A Fun and Full Week

I spent most of last week visiting Vancouver BC masterminding with Andrea J. Lee and my fabulous fellow participants of her Wealthy Thought Leader mentorship program. We spent all day Thursday and Friday brainstorming about our businesses, sharing ideas and resources, and challenging each other to stretch and be leaders in our field. It was fun getting to know everyone and all the amazing things they are up to.

On Friday, New World Library FedExed me a print out of my finalized book cover! Very exciting to see. Friday was also the day my book went to the printer. It was a treat to get to celebrate this milestone with my fellow Diamonds and a little bit of bubbly, thanks to the lovely Pamela!

On Tuesday I attended the TEDxYVR event and enjoyed watching past talks around the theme “Playing with Possibilities.” You can see a couple of my favorite videos from the night here.

I loved hanging out on Granville Island. It’s a funky, artsy area with lots of cool shops, an art and design school, and an amazing public market. I was obsessed by all of the cute stationary and notebooks at the store Paper-Ya.

And while we were holed up in the Executive Board Room of the hotel, Andrea and her team invited in play with these colorful pipecleaners. They’re such a fun and easy way to inspire creativity! You should’ve seen all of the great accessories people made.

I’m still digesting all that we covered during our intensive time together and I’m super excited about what’s in the works for next year. I’m very grateful to have the support and guidance of this mentoring group as I head into the exciting adventures that await in 2011!

C.E.O. Women Storefront Presentations

Last night I volunteered at an inspiring event through C.E.O. Women. This amazing non-profit empowers immigrant and low-income women to create economic opportunities for themselves through starting their own business. Through a rigorous 16-week program, the women learn English and entrepreneurial skills. The program culminates in their “Storefront Presentations” where they showcase their business idea and share their plans with us.

I’ve been volunteering with C.E.O. Women off-and-on since 2005 as a business coach for a massage therapist from Japan and a jewelry designer from Peru and guest presenter but this was my first time attending the Storefront Presentations. It was so much fun to get to talk with the women about their ideas and see their visual presentations (very much like a Right-Brain Business Plan!). We were encouraged to ask them lots of questions like who their target customers are and how much will it take to start their business so they get practice talking about what they do. The women last night we’re totally engaging and oh-so passionate! I met a coach, a professional organizer, and women who wanted to open up a day care, consignment shop, lunch delivery service, a floral design business, and more.

I came home feeling inspired by the passion and dedication of these fabulous women who are overcoming obstacles left and right so they can live their dream.

If you’re in the Bay Area and want to get involved, they’re looking for their next round of volunteer business coaches starting next month.

A Return to Chaos and the Unknown

“I don’t know where to start.”

“I feel overwhelmed.”

“Nothing seems to fit together anymore.”

“What’s this all for anyway?”

“Umm… no really, WTF am I doing?!”

Ahhhh, the all-too-familiar (and at times paralyzing) signs of being at the start of something new.

I’m having to retrain myself to be with and move through this amorphous inception phase again. After months of wearing “book” blinders while I focused intently on one specific goal, now I can finally set my sights on the many other creative projects I’ve been dying to get to.

But why has it felt so hard? Why have I been resisting and avoiding? Oh, yeah, it’s because I have no idea what I’m doing! How could I? I’m just getting started. The only way to know more is to do more. To take more steps forward, dabble, and play until a picture starts to take shape.

So, I sat myself outside for a couple of hours, opened up a my laptop, and just started typing notes to myself. And I finally started to gain some momentum. Sure, I’m still overwhelmed by all the things I want to do and how I’m going to do it. But, I’m not feeling stuck anymore.

The cool thing about chaos and the unknown at the start of a creative project is that really anything can happen! (Well, anything can always happen in the creative process), but somehow it feels especially juicy at the beginning.  Now I hear myself saying:

“I wonder what could happen next?”

“Yahoo! I get to do it any way I want to!”

“Anything is possible! Rock on!”

Tranquilista Goodness

Britt Bravo and I joined Tranquilista Kimberly Wilson and her beau Tim Mooney for dinner at Cafe Gratitude in Berkeley. Kimberly was in town doing her west coast book tour for her fabulous new book Tranquilista: Mastering the Art of Enlightened Work and Mindful Play. We gabbed, we laughed a ton, and we brainstormed about our creative women entrepreneur event, all while enjoying a delicious raw meal.

Kimberly Wilson and Tim MooneyHere’s the darling couple. Tim is such a great guy. It was fun to learn more about all the cool stuff that he’s up to, too.

You can check out Kimberly’s TV segment about financial finesse on The View From the Bay below.

Right-Brain Business Plan e-Course

The Right-Brain Business Plan e-Course video on Vimeo

I’m excited about the fabulous creative entrepreneurs who will be joining me in the Right-Brain Business Plan e-Course that starts next week. I hope that you’re one of them! Check out my video above and sign-up here. The early-bird special ends soon. Finally get that business plan done and have fun doing it!

Creative Women Entrepreneur Survey Results and Winners

creativewomenentrepreneurs-300pxIn the fall, Lisa Sonora Beam, Kimberly Wilson, Britt Bravo, and I asked you to tell us what your ideal creative women entrepreneur gathering would look like by completing a survey. We were thrilled that 300+ of you shared your ideas with us! Thank you!

Here are some highlights of what you said:

  • Your preferred formats would be a retreat, or an online event
  • You are in the beginning stages of starting your businesses
  • You would like both early stage and established entrepreneurs to be a part of the gathering
  • You want to clarify your vision, network, and learn hard skills (i.e. social media, finance, licensing)

Based on your input, we’re thinking about holding an in-person retreat and an online event in Fall 2010. We’ll keep you posted as things evolve. In the meantime, if you have favorite retreat locations you’d like to recommend, let us know! We’re continuing to vision and plan a fabulous experience for you and we can’t wait to connect with all of you vibrant and inspiring creative women entrepreneurs.

And congratulations to the winners of our raffle (you should each have been notified already via e-mail by your awardee):

Playing & Planning with Creative Entrepreneurs

right-brain business plan workshop

I had a blast on Sunday at my the Right-Brain Business Plan workshop. Here are Britt Bravo and Gretchen Wegner collaging up a storm! Throughout the day, we had fun shaking, howling, and twisting with our MuseCube moments. Gretchen’s MuseCubes are such a great way to connect back with the intuitive wisdom of your body.

In-person gatherings are great for building off of each other’s creative energy, getting fresh perspectives, developing relationships, brainstorming ideas, and knowing that you don’t have to go it alone as a solo-preneur.

right-brain business plan workshop

Each participant’s visual plan and business truly reflected their own values, vision, and special gifts. I loved seeing what amazing things these ladies are up to in their work.

right-brain business plan workshop

You can read a little bit more the day and see additional pictures on the Right-Brain Business Plan blog.  While you’re there, check out the latest featured business plan and interview with Sara Ortiz. Her colorful visual plan and business are bursting with creative goodness!

Connecting Creative Women Entrepreneurs


Kimberly Wilson, Lisa Sonora Beam, Britt Bravo and I were on a call the other day talking about how fun it would be to put together an event for creative women entrepreneurs to connect, create, and learn together. We came up with our own description of what an event like that would look like, but we want to hear your thoughts and opinions, too.

We put together a six-question survey to find out what your ideal creative women entrepreneur event would look like. By providing your feedback, you can enter in a raffle to be one of four winners to receive either a half hour social media consulting with Britt, a copy of the Right Brain Business Plan e-Book by Jennifer, a copy of Creative Entrepreneur by Lisa, or a copy of Hip Tranquil Chick by Kimberly.

Click here to take the survey by November 16th.

Thank you very much for your input! We’ll be designing an experience that caters to you and is what we wish we had along our journeys. That’s why we’re excited to create it!

Right-Brain Business Plan Workshop

It’s hard to believe that we’re already in the 4th quarter of the year!  Are you and your business ready for 2010? Get a head start at the Right-Brain Business Plan Workshop on Sunday, November 15th in Oakland from 10am-4:30pm.

At this fun and engaging workshop you’ll:

  • Clarify your business vision
  • Paint the picture of your business landscape
  • Create your marketing plan
  • Develop your financial plan
  • Identify the action steps needed to bring your plan to life
  • Craft a visual business plan for your entrepreneurial success

This workshop is perfect for you if:

  • You’re a creative entrepreneur, artist, health and wellness professional, educator, coach, designer, freelancer, writer, photographer, non-profit leader or all-around creative soul wanting to make a positive impact with your entrepreneurial endeavors
  • You hate the idea of writing a business plan, but you know you need one
  • Numbers numb you out

What past participants had to say:

“Your cheerful, optimistic and generous attitude really lifted my spirits and got me going into action mode. I felt I gained so much practical information as well as inspiration from the course. Having a visual reminder of my goals is really helping to keep me focused on achieving my goals for the year!” — Michelle Casey, Professional Artist

“The workshop presented a fabulous tool for accessing the non-linear wisdom and creativity that only your right brain has, and using this brilliance to fuel your entrepreneurial aspirations. If your business needs some creative fire, check it out!” — Laura Parker, MFT, Creativity-Centered Therapy and Coaching (her Right-Brain Business Plan is in the photo below)

Find out more and register here (Early-bird special ends on November 1st).

While you’re there, check out the Right-Brain Business Plan site’s fun new facelift and the latest Right-Brain Business Plan spotlight featuring Danielle Grinnen of Deliante Designs.

D.C. Creativity in Business Conference

Photo by Shiny Heart Ventures via Flickr

Last Sunday, I presented the Right-Brain Business Plan in a breakout session at the Creativity in Business Conference in D.C.  I had so much fun getting to learn and play with so many creative, innovative people.  Michelle James, the conference founder, did a magnificent job bringing together a community of entrepreneurs and professionals who are bringing positive change to the world of business.  There were experts in creativity, storytelling, business improv, right-brain/left-brain thinking, social media, conscious capitalism and so much more.

You can read my recap of the conference here, including some notes from the sessions I attended.

Photo by Shiny Heart Ventures via Flickr

I had a blast with my breakout session.  The participants were great sports, jumping right into the experiential activities and sharing with each other.  I love seeing how energized people get when they really resonate with their business vision and are inspired to move into action.

I am so glad that I said “Yes!” to Michelle’s invitation (via Twitter!) to fly out to D.C. and present.  This was one of the most engaging and authentic conferences that I’ve been to and I connected with loads of awesome people who also want to make a difference in business.

To get a feel for the energy and positive vibe of the event, check out this awesome slideshow.