I can hardly believe it’s been a year since I left my corporate job and went full time with Star, Sage & Spirit. As much work as it is it does feel a bit like I blinked my eyes and year flew by. Hard to believe that I wrote my first big post over a year ago. I was so scared to put it out there and just look at me now!
I am so proud of what I’ve done this year. For the first time I can remember, I gave myself some time to rest. I took a couple months over the summer to actually chill out. For as long as I could remember, I was a person with multiple jobs. Becoming my own boss allowed me the true luxury to have time to think about what I really wanted to be doing with my time and energy. I am so grateful that I got to do that because I really needed it.
By the time the fall rolled around I was busier than I had ever been. October is a big time of year as a tarot reader but I really packed it in with a Spiritual Expo, a residency at Chaddsford Winery, workshops, speaking at two different events and yoga teacher training.
Over the past year I’ve done readings and treatments for hundreds of people, I’ve taught 300 + yoga classes, and quite a few workshops. I also launched my first online workshop with my High Priestess Tarot Embodiment workshop back in February and my first course, Practical Tarot for Everyday Intuitives which just started this month. I am so excited to be doing this work, and honestly happy that I already had the plans to take my work online this year.
Covid-19 threw a real wrench into my plans for the year in all realms of my business. As much business as I do online, a lot of my clients are dealing with ongoing challenges to their finances, child-care, and exhaustion.
I am very grateful that I made a plan for my year back in December that already included getting more of my business online. I don’t know what I would have done if I had to start from square one.
I am also grateful for my community. I have met so many other incredible soloprenuers this year and having that community back in my life has helped me feel more confident and less alone on this path. I’m a social person and community support has been one of the most important things for my growth this year. I have a wonderful community of friends who push me outside of my comfort zone and keep me accountable to myself.
This year has brought so many lessons for me and I wanted to share them today.
Lesson 1: No matter how much you want someone to show you the path, everyone has to cut their own.
No one has the exact blueprint for you, except for you. This is a tough pill to swallow for people like myself who love to have a blueprint for how things are done.
I wanted to know the right way. I read books, did a lot of business and marketing training, but ultimately I’m the boss. I have to decide how things work.
Sure, I’ve benefited from the help of other entrepreneurs and coaches, but largely when you work for yourself you have to be willing to adapt, let go of things that aren’t working.
Setting “work” hours was a simple and effective way to keep myself from losing my mind. It sounds silly but I learned this back when I started working from home at my last job. I am the type of person who will just work always if I don’t set some boundaries on my time. This kept me from scheduling clients at all hours and also forced me to step away from my work and do stuff for fun.
Lesson 2: You’re not going to be everyone’s cup of tea.
Everyone has their own idea of how work is done. This goes across fields but I think it’s especially present in my tarot work. I spend A LOT of time taking apart the ideas and preconceived notions people have about tarot from religion and pop culture.
Some people come in expecting me to talk to their loved ones in spirit just because I’m a medium but in general I keep tarot separate from mediumship. To me they are two different channels. Sometimes a spirit might pop in but for the most part when I’m doing a tarot reading I am tuning in to the energy of the person sitting in front of me. I’ve had several people disappointed or frustrated because they don’t understand that being a medium isn’t just having a constant conversation with the other side.
I’ve learned to have more clear service descriptions and to enforce boundaries around that. Some people handle this better than others, and I have to accept that some people will always feel entitled to more of my time and energy. That is true no matter what job I’ve had.
However, the clarity that this has given me around my work has been invaluable. I’ve spent this year crafting and reworking my offerings into something much more clear and refined and now the clients that I have are very aware of what they are buying and are open and present for the work. I cannot understate how important this has been.
I was also fired from two different yoga studios over the past year. Both of those were because I wasn’t willing to bend to the will of people who wanted to make more profit off of my hard work.
I have always been a person that speaks up and asks questions when other people are afraid to. I don’t mind going first. That said, going first is tough. It often makes you the disrupter but I have made a point to always ask in a constructive way even when I understand. I received some truly nasty feedback, but I also know that it’s not really about me and that helped me bounce back.
The moment you make peace with people not liking you, is the moment you are free.
At the end of the day, you are the person that needs to feel comfortable with the energy exchange no matter what the job is. When you worry about people liking you, or what they think, you stop valuing your work in an authentic way.
Lesson 3: You have to LOVE the work.
I love my work. I have felt drawn to healing my whole life and it wasn’t until I found Reiki and energy work that it clicked.
I also love watching things come together for people with tarot. I often feel like I’m confirming thoughts or feelings my clients have and validating their own intuition. Watching people grow and trust themselves more has been such a gift.
This is also true with teaching tarot. Watching students begin to understand how their intuition works for them, trusting themselves, and having tools to better advocate for their needs has been so rewarding.
Being true to keeping the love alive did mean taking a step away from mediumship this year. While I do love the work and it has brought about profound transformation for me and others, It can also be very draining. In particular with everything going on right now with covid-19 I’ve had to take a step away from this work.
It is hard for me to keep my vibration high and keep a clear connection to the other side when I’m experiencing a lot of fear myself. It has also just been a very transitional time for A LOT of spirits which has made it difficult to hear through the noise.
Lesson 4: You have to be willing to shift over time.
(Insert COVID 19 joke here) Obviously this year has been one of having to let go of the formats we are used to and that has been true for many businesses. One of the things I’ve realized with switching to so much customer facing time, is that I’ve needed to shift my expectations of myself.
I’ve spent most of my career sitting at a desk so this was a big adjustment and I underestimated how tiring it can be to stay present when you’re face to face with clients. I’ve adjusted my schedule a lot. I have also shifted my offerings and noticed how much I enjoy teaching. It allows me to do the same things I do one on one but reach more people. This wasn’t my original plan when I started a year ago but I have adjusted and really loved teaching and building community.
If there’s anything I’ve learned from all of my healing work it is how much we all truly have in common. I hear similar struggles shared by so many clients and teaching in workshops, free training, and on online forums allow me to speak to these things that are so collective, and it helps us all feel less alone. Especially when we are physically isolated.
Lesson 5: Walk Your Talk
If you’ve been reading the blog you have seen me posting all about how I use tarot in my business but there’s a lot more that I do to incorporate my work into everyday life. I truly learn so much from my own spiritual practices that I work to share with students. Teaching from experience keeps me grounded and accountable to keep up my own work.
I even did my own business year ahead spread to celebrate.
Looks like the theme of the next year is going to be getting more clear about what I really want to be doing. Getting more comfortable with boundary setting when it comes to my work and being more discerning about what still feels in alignment for me and what I might need to let go of. I can still be a little guilty of doing a lot of free labor because I just want to help everyone so that’s been on my radar for a while.
I also see a greater opportunity to feel more stable. Although a lot changed this year and a lot of unexpected challenges came up, I think that I’ve learned what works and what doesn’t and how to give things up that aren’t working. This year looks like it will give me an opportunity to set up greater structure which will hopefully save me time and energy.
I also have made a point to find support in the areas where I struggle. So this year I’ve invested in some technology to make things easier and a tech support person for when I get stuck. There’s tremendous value in saving myself that stress, even if it’s a bit of a stretch financially.
Lesson 6: Be afraid but do it anyway
This is maybe the most important lesson I’ve learned so far. Growth only happens when you get outside of your comfort zone. I’ve done a lot of uncomfortable things this year. Putting myself out there on social media is scary. It opens me up to criticism and it brings me face to face with imposter syndrome but in those moments where I’m most scared, I know there’s a lesson on the other side. It’s usually not so scary once I actually do it.
I still have days when fear runs the show but they are fewer and farther between.
I am so grateful to be one year in. I’ve learned so much. I have the most incredible clients and students and I am so happy to be doing this work. I also have an incredible group of fellow entrepreneurs who have offered advice and community to me and I’m very grateful for them as well.
I also wanted to give a shoutout to my partner, Mike. He’s always here behind the scenes giving me hugs when I’m discouraged, editing my training videos and audio, and taking beautiful photos of me. Thank you for supporting my vision, even when I’m not great at articulating it.
Finally, in honor of my one year anniversary and to thank all of the amazing clients and friends who have supported me this year, I am offering a FREE online workshop this Friday, May 22nd at 1PM ET in partnership with Healers Wanted. My Lovers Card Tarot Embodiment workshop will teach a blueprint of how you can best advocate for the love and support you need in your life, not just from others, but also from yourself. You can sign up here.
© Sheila Masterson 2020 All Rights Reserved