Anna Maria Locke

Field notes from the entrepreneur rollercoaster (buckle up!)

Anna Locke

Hello my friends!

Can you believe we're already at Memorial Day? In typical Chicago fashion, the weather has been boomerang-ing between 40’s and rainy and 70’s and humid. But the peonies are starting to bud so there’s hope!

The weather is kind of a metaphor for my life right now. Sunny/cloudy. Hot/cold. Energizing/depressing.

I’ve spent the last few months participating in a wonderful and inspiring mastermind group of other life and business coaches who are also passionate about building successful coaching businesses grounded in authenticity and spirituality. A fusion of biz and woo, if you will. It’s been a blast and also an extremely intense comfort-zone blasting experience (I'm such a sucker for those!).

This week my coach Lexi helped me realize that I need to share more behind the scenes of what I’m going through in this season of life.

So here I am! 

For the past several months I’ve been dealing with a lot of writer’s block around blogging because to be completely honest, I feel like a hot mess on the inside and don’t even know what I could or should be writing about. I have so many thoughts and ideas swirling in my head but as soon as I get a bit of clarity, I move on to the next breakthrough and I’m afraid if I try to put what I’m going through into words, I will make absolute zero sense. 

Insert: perfectionism paralysis

But I also know that it’s ok to not make sense. I’m living this life for me, and I want to write for me. I want to document this messy season of becoming and be-ing because I’m starting to understand that life will always feel messy and it’s not my job to make sense of it all. It’s my job to strap into the rollercoaster and go along for the ride!

I think it was Liz Gilbert who wrote that she bargains with God, saying "I'll show up and focus on the quantity (of work), if you take care of the quality," and I'm trying to adopt that mindset of faith.

It’s not about the outcome or whether my (or your) writing is good or bad. Who’s the judge, anyway? It’s about the process and the discipline of sitting down and letting creative energy flow through me. Letting myself find my voice. Letting my message and thoughts be heard. The more I bottle up creative energy, the more anxious and stressed and out of alignment I feel.

So here’s where I’m at:

I’m learning that entrepreneurship is very much a spiritual journey, and building a business doesn’t fit a linear growth model.

Yup, it's a never ending rollercoaster shaped like a ball of spaghetti noodles.

My inner perfectionist and Type A left brain scientist is having fits.

My inner artist and right brained creative is having a field day.

When you’re trying to figure out your purpose, you’ll probably be faced with the questions “what did you like to do when you were a kid?” AKA what were your dreams and desires and passions back before the world started to get into your head?

And the truth is that I was always creative. I was easily inspired and loved making beautiful things out of nothing. My imagination was bigger than life. I lived inside of my daydreams, my magical invented worlds. I knew I was part of something bigger than I could see and feel with my eyes and body.

So I’m giving that little girl Anna some time in the sun again. This is who I’m meant to be and I'm discovering that through the past 15 years of education and jobs and pivots and crises I’ve simply been on a journey of coming home to myself.

I'm trying to get curious and listen to and ACT on my creative impulses instead of telling myself things like “I’m too busy to take a break and paint.”

I've been taking deep dives into self care, spirituality, and learning what it’s like to lean back and meet God/the universe halfway instead of trying to force and control my goals into existence. Trying to trust that what I’m seeking is also coming to me, and learning how to open myself up to receive instead of constantly striving.

Here’s what I’m learning about entrepreneurship:

There’s so much dogma about the hustle, the grind, working harder and smarter and making more money, but when does it all end?

It only ends when we decide that WE ARE ENOUGH. It’s ok to want to continue to grow, but when we work from a place of rest, peace, and knowledge that we already have everything we need … we’re able to go deeper and further.

I’ve been exploring my faith, establishing a personal relationship with God, and getting curious about the invisible stuff like feminine energy, astrology, cycles, deeper connection to the vast space of source energy that we’re all part of. 

I love learning how I work, how I’m wired, and discovering my strengths. To me, spirituality is a form of self discovery on a deeper level, beyond personality tests.

Where this is bringing me?

Into my soul’s purpose.

My mission as a life coach: to help my fellow perfectionists and creative entrepreneurs learn how to slow down, release the striving,  navigate the rollercoaster, connect with their purpose, put their soul and heart back into their biz, overcome “empty success syndrome” and create a thriving business that supports them and a life that lights them up. 

And I'm learning that I need to do the work on MYSELF first and always (because it never ends), and learn what it actually feels like to slow down, tune in, and light myself back up from the inside.

When we project thriving positive energy and a sense of abundance, we’ll attract the people and opportunities that we need to take ourselves to the next level of success.

It's also important to remember that external success doesn’t bring happiness. If you want to be successful, you have to be happy FIRST. The money and all the ego stuff will follow, but it shouldn't be the goal.

Welcome to the rollercoaster. Up and down and up again.

Sometimes I feel like I’m growing and evolving so quickly I can barely keep up.

Sometimes I feel stuck.

Sometimes I feel like I’m pouring all my heart and time and energy into something that isn’t going anywhere.

Sometimes I feel like I can't even contain the joy and happiness and gratitude that's exploding my heart. 

Sometimes I go through a few weeks where I’ll be busy being … not busy. Hanging out with my own thoughts and Hulu.

Sometimes I watch myself dip back into my old workaholic tendencies and forget to take care of myself. Then I start to feel burned out, frazzled, and desperate and try to remember what it was like when I was doing less.

But through it all I’m continuing to show up for myself, my business, and my life and I’m learning so many lessons along the way.

I’m turning my life into my work and even though it's scary, it's also so much fun.

And day by day I'm making it happen! And letting it happen.

And learning how to relax and ride the rollercoaster with my arms in the air.

xo Anna 

p.s. if you want to chat more about life coaching or your own rollercoaster, click here to book a free 30 minute discovery call! Aka virtual coffee date :)

photo by Artistrie Co