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Episode 240: Mailbag

Hey guys, welcome back to another episode of the blessing Boston podcast. This episode is a mailbag episode over the last couple of weeks, we've really been going in. So I wanted to carve out some time to answer your questions here on the show. I'm live on my Instagram. So if you guys are not following me on Instagram, follow me at Tatum to Mia, you can also follow the blessed embossed up Instagram page at blessed in Boston. All right, let's get right into these questions.

The first question says, what are some practical ways to keep Jesus in a growing and successful business? Listen is really not that hard to keep God in your business when he's always been in your business from the get-go. So any advice that I would give you guys who you don't want to get off track, and you want to keep God at the forefront of your business is to stay grounded and never get complacent. So what I mean by that is you should always be flexible and able to move with whatever way that God wants you to move.

And what I mean by staying grounded is don't let success go to your head to the point where you think that it can't get taken away from you just like that. Sorry to interrupt. Let's pay this bill and we'll get back to answering these questions. This episode is brought to you by helium 10, picture this, you have the freedom of being your own boss and running a business that best suits your particular lifestyle and schedule the best way to work from home and be your own boss is by becoming an Amazon seller.

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Don't wait to get 50% off your first month, go to helium Let's get back to the show. Your loyalty has to be clearly defined when it comes in your business. And that's not something that happens once you're successful. That's something that happens from day one. If you're trying to build a business, God's way you need to establish, where does your loyalty lie? Is it to the money? Is it to the followers? Is it to the success? Is it to this brand that you have built?

Where does your loyalty lie? Because if it's not to God, that's a dangerous place to be in because he can take it away. Pride comes before the fall and your loyalty will be tested. I remember I tell the story all the time about when I shut down my business, I believe that was a time where God was testing my loyalty. What business was finally growing. It was finally getting successful. I was finally getting these clients and he told me to shut it all down. So I had to go to the point where I was on my way to this goal of having a six figure company.

And then I had to make a decision where does my loyalty lie? Does it lie on this trajectory that I'm finally on, that I had been waiting so long to get on or does it lie in just doing what God told me to do and putting my hope, my trust and my confidence that his plan is better than mine. Even if it feels, it seems like I'm taking steps backwards. And so again, keeping God in your business, the root of it is where does your loyalty lie? I remember when I first started seeking God on behalf of my, he studied, he had me studying Jeremiah and I, I bought this study.

It was pretty much like a, it was a book and it was a study. What is it? Study God for Jeremiah. And I went through it. It was text. And they have like little prompts where you can answer. And all of these things as I was a bit frustrated, because I didn't know why God had me studying Jeremiah. And I was in a place where I was newly self-employed. I was ready to make money. I had done all the practical things. I had this vision board. I looked at every day, I set all these affirmations. I set up everything to where I could see the things that I was working towards.

I had on my vision board at the house. I wanted the car, I wanted all of these things and I was doing everything that I knew to put success in front of me. And God had me studying Jeremiah. And I didn't really like it because it was kind of depressing. Jeremiah is a long book in the Bible. It's not even in chronological order. And it's depressing because all Jeremiah did was obey God and get rejected. So he went and did what God told him to do, but ain't nobody want to hear that they was ready to kill him, give like nobody was accepting of him, but God saw Jeremiah as successful because Jeremiah was obedient.

And the lesson that God was trying to teach me in that season, this was before the success. So the lessons he was trying to teach me in that season is to establish my loyalty. Am I loyal to what I'm looking at on his vision board? Or am I loyal to doing business God's way, no matter where that leads me. And I believe that foundation is the reason why I'm able to keep God in my business now, because I didn't get me here. I don't have any ego or pride when it comes to this. I didn't get me here.

I will shut this all down right now. If God told me to, I've done it before and I will do it again. And so as God is just continuing to elevate me and I'm seeing the numbers go up in the business, the numbers go up and listenership and the impact and the influence continues to grow. I keep myself very much so grounded to where I posted my stories. I go for my walks in the morning, like, God, what were you doing? What do you have me to do next? This is what I'm struggling with right now. How do I navigate this?

Like, it's not, I'm not so self absorbed. And that's what we, I think a place we have to really get into, because especially as we're building these brands on social media and things of that nature, it feeds that self-righteousness to where you get all these likes and followers and views and comments and shares and all of this data where people are basically affirming you on a day-to-day basis. It can make your head big. It can make you your ego big, but you have to stay in a place to where you are grounded.

And so that's the biggest piece of practical advice that I could give is to stay grounded, never get complacent and always flexible to move. As God tells you to move this. Next question says, when did you notice the transition from hustle to peaceful routines? This is funny because this transition was a choice to go from the hustle and bustle to a more peaceful way of doing business.

One thing that I did was I made sure I did a lot of the hustle before I had a family and I noticed it's impossible for everybody, but for my story, I wanted to get my master's degree out the way I wanted my business to be at a certain place financially as, and as well as a workload before I had a child so that I wasn't grinding and hustling while also trying to be there for a young child. And so I, I, I did a lot of my grinding before having a family and now grinding looks a little bit different.

Now it's more so about being efficient, being effective and being strategic, making sure that where I'm spending my time, I'm getting a return on that investment, making sure that I'm investing strategically in my business so that we can be the most effective as a company and not just in being effective as far as like the services or products that we offer, but effective as, as far as like how we operate, where I'm spending my money and team and technology and all of these things, is it giving a return on investment?

So I'm paying attention to the financials. I'm paying attention to the time that people are putting in. I'm paying attention to the structure, the organizational structure. I was talking to a friend recently and she's now expanding her team. And she was like, well, how do you, like, how did you build your team? Where do you start? How do you manage people? And I was like, well, do you have an org structure? And she was like, no, I'm like, okay, hold on. We got to start from the beginning. What is the structure of your business who is in charge? Is it a higher as a hierarchal?

You said at work, is it a hierarchy type of structure? Is everybody on the same level? Like these are the things that I learned in business school. And it's funny because people always ask that. I think that getting an MBA helps in business, and I believe that an MBA doesn't teach you how to be an entrepreneur. It teaches you how to be an executive. And that was very beneficial for me. And so I learned how to, through my coursework, I learned how to build teams and how to build a global team and to build structure for my company.

And so doing those things in school translated into my business. So we're not now when I'm looking for team members or I'm trying to decide who goes, where on the org chart, I'm able to do that and apply what I learned practically in my business. And so she and I talked about that, but that's a, that's a big thing. Now going from hustle to peaceful routines is making sure that we're efficient and strategic. Also for me, a huge part of my piece is setting clear boundaries. So most of the time I don't, I keep a clear distance between me and our customers most of the time.

So faith who is my assistant. Usually people go through her before getting to me because people try to put stuff on you in business. We'll have people who, if let's say they're late on a payment, they'll send this long email about God, this and God that and all of this. So that could stress me out because they may pull on my heartstrings to where I want to be lenient, but that's not effective for my business. We have to make sure that we're following through on our con our side of contracts, as well as making sure we're holding people accountable to their side of contracts.

And so it doesn't make us less Christian, like it just means that we're doing business. And so I'm a part of maintaining my piece is also making sure I keep that distance in a sense. And, and I do that through my team. Also, I have very clear work hours. I don't work before eight 30 and I don't work after four 30. There are some exceptions to the rule, but generally those are my work hours. I don't work on the weekends at all. I give myself one weekend a month and that's when we do our content day, where we shoot all of our YouTube videos and things like that.

But that's it that's one Saturday out of the whole month. I don't work on a weekend. There's a clear boundary. I spend time with my family. I plan my weeks and business a week in advance. So on Friday I sit down and I plan out what I have to do for the following week. So on the weekend, I'm not working at all. I don't need to figure out my schedule, cause I already know it. I did it on Friday. So then when Monday comes along, I'm not waking up like, man, what do I have to do this week? That's what grind will do it.

The reason why we grind is because we don't know where we're going is because we don't have a clear plan or a clear trajectory to anything we're just waking up and trying to figure everything out. And that's just stressful. And it's uneffective. You may make, you'll spend your time chasing little checks as opposed to spending less effort for a bigger payoff. I was telling a friend of mine recently, we were texting and she wanted to start, but she was saying that talking about starting another podcast, I said, you don't need another podcast for what leverage the platform that you have, make it bigger so that it can multiply and make more money and increase your reach and serve the different areas of your business that you wanted to serve.

But you don't need to do more doing more. It doesn't equal more money. It doesn't, it does equal more time, which makes you stressed because now your energy and your efforts are being dispersed. And so all of these different places as a PO, as opposed to being very focused on the one thing or the two things, that's gonna make you the largest amount of money. And so that's a big thing for me when it comes to business and making that transition, I didn't want to hustle

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Speaker 2 (18m 6s): I heard a quote where it said work as if somebody else is working 24 hours to take it all away from you. That's stressful. That's a hustler's mentality being on a block before the sun come up all the way, and then still being on the block. When the sun comes, goes down, like that's stressful and a benefit of having a business where you're following God is that when you're resting, he's still working on your behalf. He's going before you and making crooked path straight. He's making your name great.

He's making a seat at the table for you so you can work strategically and have peace of mind because you have the one who knows all working on your behalf. Like that's a level of peace. That's our past is all understanding that is promised to us as believers. And so for me, going from the hustler to having these routines that are more structured, it came from me being strategic, really operating in my space as the CEO of this company, as the manager and the leader of this company, operating in that space, as opposed to just the hustler.

It came from that as well as really understanding the benefits and the rewards that I have as the daughter of a king. This one says, how did you stay on routines with your quiet time? We've got while adjusting as a new mom. This is a great question. I didn't at first I will be lying to you. If I said that, I kept up my time with God every single day, when I first gave birth to my son, that did not happen. I was going through a lot.

When I first had my son, I was going through PTSD cause I had just a very stressful birth experience. So I was dealing with the emotions of that, had a C-section. So I'm trying to physically recover from a delivery. I'm trying to adjust, not getting any sleep. Like it was very, very stressful. I know every new mother understands where I'm coming from. And one of the things that really gave me peace of mom was that God gives me grace and I need to give myself grace as well.

And that's something that I told myself every single day, just because I may not have had that quiet time as consistently where I'm waking up and let's say sitting in front of, or opening up my Bible and shutting everything out. Even though I didn't have that, I was still in communication with God throughout the day. It may not have been this 30 to 45 minutes set period, but I was praying and talking to God all day. And I had to just give myself some grace in that season, as I figured it out. And this is a mindset.

This is something that I think we all have accept is that God is a gracious father. He knows that you're a new mom. He knew that I was a new mom. He was there through, through all of the things that had me stressed at that time. He was there as I was so overwhelmed and trying to figure out this new normal for myself. And so if he gives me grace, I have to give it to me too. And so I, so to answer your question, I didn't stay on routine initially, but once I got a little bit of the hang of this whole new babies thing, because I was so naive, I thought that when I had a child, I have the mindset where it's like, to me, everything can just be figured out.

Like it can be hard, but you know, I'll figure it out. Like that's my mindset with everything. And it was like that when it came to having a child, I'm like, okay, I know it's gonna be hard. It's gonna be an adjustment, but I'll figure it out. Oh no, no, no, no. It was a definitely a lot harder than I thought. And I still was able to figure it out, but it was a lot harder of an adjustment than I thought it was going to be because there were so many other factors in that. And so I didn't get it right initially. But once I got the hang of it a little bit and was able to give myself grace, I wasn't able to go back to the drawing board.

Like, okay, God, I know that you, you know, knew that I was ready for these blessings. Otherwise you wouldn't have given them to me. So what is the structure or the system that I need to be able to master my life in this season. And so then I just was able to go back to God and get the strategy to build it out. And I talk about this a lot in my book. So I won't get too deep. I'll maybe do another podcast episode to really break down what that system ended up looking like. But like I said, initially, I didn't stay on routine.

I had to figure out what my, what quiet time was going to look like in this new season of my life and give myself the grace to be able to adjust and figure it out. This episode is brought to you by word tune. If you're like me, you spend a lot of your time writing. It may not be books or products, but you write emails. You may write your resume. You may write papers for school, a meeting, recap, a blog, all of the things.

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My listeners get to try word tune for free at word Get help writing your emails, reports, presentations, resumes, blogs today go to w O R D T U N Let's get back to the show. Okay. So the next question is a business one. It says how to create a community from scratch. I'm so glad that they asked this because I always tell people, especially when they're trying to figure out, even with podcasts, is when they're trying to figure out how to make money or what to sell.

I always recommend that people do communities. As you guys know, we have the society, which is our membership community. It's a monthly membership community. We do Bible studies challenges fast. We can't do so much. We have weekly prayer calls sessions twice a month. We highlight even our members where our members who are entrepreneurs are able to do sessions within the group to advertise their businesses. It's a lot going on in there, but it is a community of like like-minded women who want to grow in their faith and who want to grow in their business.

And we've been doing this for a couple of years now. It's been extremely successful for us. And so I've learned a lot over the last couple of years, doing this membership community. So for any of you guys who want to build some type of monthly membership community is great because it's recurring income. So I know how much money I'm going to make from the society. Every single month, kumbaya knows how much money she's going to make from the society. We do it together every single month. And so it's recurring revenue is repeatable revenue.

So it's really beneficial for us, planning wise, as far as our businesses go. But the first thing I would tell you to do with starting out is figure out what does your community need, right? Where are your people at now? And where are you trying to help them get to through your community? So for us, our community, they're in a space where they identify as Christian. They are newer entrepreneurs. They haven't really hit their big success goals yet, but they're figuring it out.

They're building, they're also Christian and they're struggling a bit. And they're walking in a sense where they're trying to figure out, like, how does this fit together? Like they understand from a logical standpoint that God should be involved in their business, but they're not sure like how to really put that together practically and how to live it out on a day-to-day basis. They may have their own things that they're dealing with. That's preventing them from truly 100% diving into the faith part. They may be confused on some things. So I understand where our audience is right now, where we want them to get to.

Isn't a place to where they're confident to, where they are having those consistent business meetings with God, where they're seeing a breakthroughs in their life and in their businesses where they know the word where they're not settling for anything less than God's best to where they wake up and they'll make hell mad because they are, are walking boldly and confidently in their purpose. Like that is where we want them to go. So identify where your person or your people are now identify where you want them to go and then figure out what do they need in order to get there.

And that's how you start to build out what the inclusions are in your community. So we do our weekly prayer calls. We have Bible studies. We have devotionals that go out every single day. So we're constantly in communication with an audience of we're constantly providing them resources to be able to grow in their faith and their business. Something else to consider though, with your community is understand that it's time consuming. So you have to figure out a way to give your audience something consistently, give them these resources consistently without you being the one that has to show up every single day for it, because we don't want you being burnt out and trying to build this community.

And if it's going to be a monthly membership is going to be low cost. So you don't want to be showing up for a 9 99 membership community every month. You don't want to be showing up every day and giving your last two that every single day, it's not, it's not worth it. So you have to figure out that happy medium. So for us, we have the daily devotionals that go out, but those are prescheduled a month in advance and so kumbaya and make sure that all of those are scheduled to go out. So they're getting something every day from us, but we're not showing up and giving our energy every single day.

The prayer calls a lab once a week, even with the Bible studies, we get group licenses for Bible studies. So like one of them, we did a Priscilla Shire, a Bible study on how to, how to hear from God. And so we're hearing God's voice, something like that. And so we bought the group license so that we can then take all of those videos. It's about seven or eight video study. And so we were able to take those videos, uploaded into our system and have that auto spill out to the audience. So they have these resources come into them, but in there they're getting growing deeper in their understanding of the word by somebody who is a Bible scholar.

But again, we're not the ones that showing up every week, teaching it and breaking down the scripture. And we're able to leverage the expertise of others by buying the licenses for their products. We're able to now bring in that high level expertise and offer it to our community at a low cost. So think about creative ways that you can continue to give your audience to tools that they need, but to where you're not completely burnt out in the process.

Also make sure that you're very clear on what the culture of your community is. So with the society, we prioritize being a sisterhood. This is a safe space where you can let us know, let yourself, let your hair. Now you can be yourself. You can talk about the things you want to talk about and we're going to help each other grow. Even with one of the most beautiful things that I believe happened in a society was when COVID first hit. Of course, a lot of our members were impacted by that.

And so there was one thread. I think I brought it up on a prayer call. I don't even remember, but there was a thread where I was like, does anybody need help? And so there were people who commented, like they needed help. They didn't have money for their rent. They didn't have money for these bills. And so they, they, and so I told them like, drop your cash app. This is a safe space. I'm not, we're not judging you because you may need help or anything like that. And so people's mortgages was getting paid bills was getting paid like, so we were able to just come together as a community and give and help each other.

It's just such a, it was such a beautiful thing for me to just see during this place of the pandemic, it just started so much calamity was going on. Here we are. And our little section of the internet, we were able to come together as a group of, of society, sisters and help each other grow. So that really blessed me just to see it happening. And so again, think about the type of culture that you want to cultivate within your community and be committed to that.

And sometimes you have to be a little bit stern. I know we had a situation recently where I usually don't step in too much unless I need to with like certain things that may go one. And so we had a situation where I felt like the culture and the S the sisterhood that we were, that we cultivate was getting, what's the, what's the best word to say it. I felt like it was getting compromised. And so I had to be very clear about what we do and also what we don't do within this group.

So as the leader of the group, you also have to make sure that you are cultivating and making sure that the people that you allow in your community are adhering to the rules and the culture that you set. Also, if you're a faith based community, make sure that you're praying and interceding for your community as well. Because the thing about membership communities is because a lot of it is automatic, especially with like recurring payments and stuff like that.

A lot of it is automatic. So for us, somebody can activate a free trial. Then after the two weeks is up, they stay a member. We don't see all of that. So it's easy for people to maybe sneak in and we not know that they're there, but we have to make sure that we're also praying for the safety of our community. So we're not letting the enemy infiltrate what God is doing and what he's building. So also make sure that you are constantly praying and interceding on behalf of your community and praying against any type of attacks or anything that may try to happen or compromise what God has you building.

So that would be my advice to create a community from scratch. Also having some type of, and I mentioned free trial, having some type of low risk way for people to try to community out before they commit. So you want people to know that where they're spending their money monthly, or even if they stay for a few months, you want them to know what they're getting into. So be very clear about, what's included, be very clear about your refund policy, especially if it's a digital community. If somebody wants to refund, they already have access to all the stuff.

So make sure if you're not giving refunds, that that's very clear. You can maybe even have some type of agreement that they have to sign in order to be a member of the community, but yet offer some type of free trial to where people could come in and experience it at a low risk way. Something that we, a system that we found that works to get members in is we do these challenges and fast and bootcamps and all of these different things for free. And it's pretty much still just the free trial that we always have. We're just facilitating some type of event that goes on during that free trial period to get people in.

And so that's worked very well for us to where now we have a system, we know we're going to do some type of challenge. We're going to get new members when the next quarter runs around, we're going to do another type of challenge or event or whatever, to get members in to get people involved. And then that just helps us continue to grow and build our community. So I'm giving you all the secrets here. I hope we really wrote that down as I gave you everything that you need to start a, a community from scratch. So I'm going to stop the questions there.

If you have a question that you want to be answered on the show, whether I do a mailbag or I'm able to get to it in a normal episode, just email me Tatum at Tatum, to me, We separate those emails, just so we have them available for whenever we do answer questions on the podcast. And again, make sure that you follow me on Instagram at Tatum to Mia and follow the podcast and blessed in Boston. Thank you guys so much for listening to another episode. I will talk to you next week.


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