Tough Love from Jillian - The Newsletter
Since time has healed my broken heart and my faith has grown stronger, I am comfortable saying I hated my business once and wanted to quit.
It was 9 years in and I just didn’t feel like it was ever going to catch on. From the outside, we looked successful and prosperous. But internally, we were hanging on by a thread. And money wasn't the only thing I was running out of...my hope was fizzling.
I struggled for 3 hard years during this time and was reaching my edge.
When the biz first started, I spent 4 solid, blissful years chasing my passion. In years five and six, we grew rapidly and I had my two boys. I was basically sitting on the gas pedal of business and life.
Year 7 stopped me in my tracks.
The financing caught up with me.
My processes were a mess and didn’t evolve with growth.
Leadership was still too green
We didn’t have the marketing structure in place at that time to support the size of our business
The list goes on...
In years 7-9 through nine, we (I) struggled.
The risk you take on as a business owner is not one most people will ever understand or ever really comprehend. You risk money, time, and energy to follow a passion or create something that will help others. The product or service you are providing must be consistent and the company needs to evolve with growth to always stay relevant.
Those are hard tasks for green entrepreneurs, so the early years can be stressful, to say the least. Regardless, my point is that those three years changed me as a person.
I learned who my true friends were.
I learned what risk really meant.
I stared fear in the face every day, and fear won most days.
I was frustrated with God.
I was confused.
I was worried all the time we would lose our home.
My fear was crippling. All this was going on and I was trying to be a good mom and keep my shit together as a leader to be the light for my team. But truthfully, I was just thinking about whether we'd make payroll each Friday.
My purpose is to serve people through the platform of fit-flavors. That has always been the responsibility and gift that God has granted me. I started to lose hope and questioned my purpose during those years. Why God, why is this happening to me? I prayed. I cried all the time. I felt stuck.
I remember coming home from work to a two and three year old and pushing them on the swings looking at the lake in our backyard, what would have been a joyful moment was torture. Inside I thought I am not happy, I hate my life and this should be such a beautiful moment but work would control my mind.
I tried to turn work off and be present but so many times my peace was stolen by the fear that lingered in my body day after day.
Looking back now, I would not trade what I went through for anything. Which sounds crazy, I know. But those times of suffering and waiting were there to strengthen me. And the same can be said for whatever you're going through.
That season my life was testing my faith. God was with me the whole time. Pushing me to my limit, yet never forsaking me. He was strengthening my faith through my struggle. I did not want to let go because I feel responsible to God. Yet every inch of my cardinal nature wanted to throw in the towel. I never stopped fighting, as hard as it was, as lonely as it was, how depressing it was, my internal fire would not go out.
The light that Jesus planted in me was still going. Barely flickering, but it was still burning. I have faith that God is using me as a tool in his plan. I am merely an available Christian willing to carry the flag for Jesus.
I don’t have all the answers to why the business came out of the pits, but it was a collaborative effort by the entire staff doing their jobs great and a relentless commitment to the purpose of fit-flavors. To be your first resource in healthy eating for the communities we serve.
Life has its ebbs and flows. I have seen my fair share of ebbs, but right now at this moment, we are flowing. I am present, I am grateful and I know there will be another ebb in my future. I am equipped with the power of God’s spirit to help guide me.
Thank for listening to another deep one, guys.
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