Running a business can see you being pulled in a million different directions and wearing way too many hats than initially anticipated. It’s easy to lose focus and the ‘why’ of what you’re doing, but this doesn’t have to be the case.
We sat down with business mentor and Business Club member, Fiona Luca to pick her brain on all things business, mentoring and how yoga and dance have helped her navigate it all on and off the mat.
How can a business mentor help a business owner?
Owning a business can be extremely exposing. During one of my presentations, I likened it to stripping naked and standing in the middle of a busy highway; vulnerable, raw and out for the world to see! And doing this alone is even more confronting.
A Business Mentor/Coach supports, guides, motivates and role models, often drawing from their own experience to hold space for the business owners to feel empowered to believe in their ability and hold them accountable for their vision.
Running a business can often feel like a one man band. Having a mentor beside you, a confidante and knowledgeable resource is an effective and impactful way to facilitate your thinking and expand your view of your business and your own potential!
When should someone seek out a business mentor?
Effective immediately! This is probably the biggest piece of advice I’d offer my former (business owner) self and I offer my own clients.
As a society, I believe we have been conditioned to ‘seek support’ when we are in dire straits, rather than as an ongoing practice. Business owners, particularly women business owners, often feel the pressure to ‘do it all’ and alone. Perhaps to prove to our society, ourselves (and our ego’s) that we ‘CAN do it!’. This mindset is limiting for business and our own capacity in business.
Often the power lies in the ‘who’ not the ‘how’ and seeking support from a Business Mentor adds to the circle of support we can lean on to grow, expand and explore new boundaries in our business. It reminds us that we are not alone and provides us with alternate perspectives from someone that has ‘been there, done that and often learnt the hard way!’
I advocate hugely for the importance of investing in personal and professional development consistently as a business owner. The more knowledge we access of ourselves both personally and in business, the more empowered we feel to step into the leadership role to do justice to our vision and our business.
As a Business Coach/Mentor I cannot serve my own clients without my own circle of support, in fact, I encourage you to ask the question before engaging in your next Coach….Who supports you?
What do you find are the biggest stressors for business owners?
Great question, where do I start?!
As a business Mentor and Coach, I seem to attract the business owners that have lost themselves in their business and are struggling to stay above water for air.
Their wellbeing is non-existent and the once ‘passion-fueled’ endeavour has instead become the all-consuming task of managing teams, clients, budgets & marketing with minimal time and energy left for their personal life and often from a complete lack of consciousness, self-awareness and creativity.
The desirable work-life balance is non-existent and instead they are spinning furiously on the hamster wheel, disconnected from the awareness that ‘something’s gotta give before it changes’.
So, the biggest stressors I see stem from the business owner having lost their identity, purpose and joy during the process, left feeling unfulfilled and disconnected from themselves. Irrelevant of the size, scope or profit margin, pouring ALL of your time and energy into something that doesn’t fuel the soul is stressful, period!
What advice do you have for business owners who feel like they’re losing a bit of their passion?
I LOVE this question!
Reconnect to the WHY in your business.
What do you know of your business to be true? What do you do really well? What component of your business lights you up? Which bit does not anymore? Where does your genius lie? What is your biggest asset as a business owner?
It is so easy for us to get lost in the day to day running of our businesses, prioritising the menial tasks that aren’t pushing the needle forward, or inspiring us to push boundaries and reach new heights. As Business Owners we are creative beings. What once was YOUR idea is now a fully formed and functioning reality; one that employs staff, pays wages, provides a service and has its own social handle! Just because it is out there for the world to see and enjoy, doesn’t mean we stop being CREATIVE or INSPIRED.
Surround yourself with business owners that are taking inspired action. Seek a mentor or coach to reignite your inner flame and reconnect you with your purpose (and it is perfectly wonderful and acceptable if this purpose has changed shape or form too!)
Stop, pause and listen to what your inner wisdom is telling you. Lean into the feelings of unfulfillment or lack of passion and explore the messages they are trying to tell you. Perhaps there are other areas of your life that are lacking passion also…it sounds like it’s time for you to get curious and a coach!
What about people who are thinking about starting their own business- what advice do you have for them before starting?
First and foremost, do it!
I believe turning a vision or side hustle into a business is a life changing and expanding experience, both professionally and personally. It shows that you have ‘bet on yourself’ and that self-belief will serve you for the rest of your life.
Aside from taking inspired action, surround yourself with people that are wonderful resources for you and your business. It could be professionals in fields of expertise that your business needs, well-seasoned business owners or a business coach or mentor.
Not dissimilar to running a family, you need a tribe to run your business. Network with like-minded folk that are on the same path and can resonate with your journey. Talking business with your pals in secure government roles, won’t cut it, trust me!
Know your Why, understand your audience and believe in your idea.
And lastly, set some very firm boundaries from the beginning, ones that affirm that your emotional, mental and physical well-being are equally as important as your business.
Your business needs ALL of you, not what is left of you.
You’re a dancer and hardcore yogi, how have you found these two activities can help bring a new perspective to running a small business?
Through movement and connecting with my body, I am connecting with myself and with this perspective I make choices and take inspired action from a place of alignment, truth and trust rather than fear and scarcity.
Mindsets, many business owners (myself included at one time) find themselves in.
We all know the physical and mental benefits of exercise and moving our bodies, but for me, yoga affords me an opportunity to create space between myself and my experience of my world. With this space I find myself less reactive to what is happening around me and instead more curious to make choices from a place of clarity rather than conditioned response.
Yoga, for me, happens off the mat. If I can find the calm and tranquility I find in yoga class, in the real world, in and amongst mountains of challenges and triggers, then yoga is doing its job.
As a business owner, to be less reactive and more responsive has served me hugely!
And dance…well that’s a no brainer. Dancing has kept me young, vibrant and allows me to access my feminine. Leading with this vitality feels awesome!
You recently joined Business Club – what have you gotten from this experience?
So very much!
Knowledge, inspiration but most significantly, dear, dear friends, that see me, value me and have my back as I have there’s. Business Club is much more than a ‘networking’ experience.
For many of us, we connected during the onset of the pandemic. Many of us were scared, confused and vulnerable. Bonding from that raw place has allowed us to connect on a much deeper level and now I can honestly say that I have formed long lasting friendships because of this.
Thank you Business Club for arriving at a time, when many of us needed an extra set of hands to hold and ears to listen. As I said, it’s the who not the how, and because of the Business Club, the Who’s in my life are abundant!
Fiona Luca describes herself as a lifelong creative, both as a practitioner and consultant. She is also a business facilitator, qualified Dance educator, Yoga and Pilates instructor, and a mother and has deep desire to make an impact wherever she goes go. Just when you thought they were all the feathers in her cap, she’s also a movement, mindset & business coach, too! You can learn more about Fiona’s 1:1 bespoke programs for Women in Business and how she can support you here or @movewithfionaluca.
Become a member today to be part of a community of thousands who want the best for each other, and for the world, as well as perks like free access to online education through our Masterclass Online, a subscription to our member-mag Latte and discounted tickets to all of our events!