Episode 238: Reshaping Your Business To Reflect Personal Growth

September 14, 2022

My brand is making a shift and reshaping in order to reflect my personal growth. I believe that a pretty and profitable brand is valuable, but it’s more impactful when we represent who we are and put empowerment behind what we believe. In today’s episode, I’m giving you an inside look at what this means for me, but also encouraging you to do the same.

Let’s get vulnerable.

Building Business that Reflect Who We Are

We live in an era where we get to build businesses that reflect us and who we are. This priveledge offers us the chance to present ourselves in the way we want to be portrayed, but also comes with a lot of decisions to make in what that looks like. I think the beauty in this is that we get to evolve this portrayal as we become more comfortable with who we are, but also who we’re becoming on our own journey.

Taking a Retrospective Look at My Business

As I approached my annual sabbatical this year, I wrote an email to my newsletter community that there would be a shift in my brand, as the way I was doing it was no longer serving me.

When I looked at my business, especially when I looked at the way that I was marketing myself or utilizing social media, I was not resonating with that anymore. I decided that I wanted to shift, no matter how scary that was.

I wanted to evolve my brand to serve me better. My business is a machine that works for me—at least it should be. So I took a look at what was serving me, what wasn’t serving me, and how I could shift.

When looking at this, I realized that my business doesn’t serve the humanity that I want it to. The amount of work and emotion wasn’t bringing me joy, despite the fact that I had made great strides to building a business that served me. I could do better. If it’s not life-giving, there is no longevity possible.

Now, I’m in the process of leaving behind what has served me well up until this point.

Reshaping Your Business To Reflect Personal Growth

In order to step into what’s next for me in this season, I have to take a look at my business and reshape it. Now, I am restructuring it to have equity at it’s very core. My business will honor the diversity, the equity and the inclusion that needs to show up in every business, across the world. I’m also taking the steps to build a business who honors who I am.

I’m no longer committing to showing up as a character inside my business anymore. I’m committed to showing up in the real and the vulnerable ways that honestly were such a foundational part of how I grew my business in the beginning.

I want for this business to be committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

I want for my business to honor the fact that I live with a chronic illness.

My business needs to operate differently throughout the year to honor my energy and prioritize my wellbeing.

I am committed to honoring the queer community that I am part of in what appears to be a heteronormative space while creating a space for others who identify as queer.

I believe that when we embrace who we are and we build that into a part of our brands, we give ourselves the opportunity to not only be seen fully as who we are, but we also give ourselves the opportunity to connect with others who need our message and will be encouraged by that message. That is worth it if you ask me.

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Hi friend, and welcome to the brand strategy podcast. A show created to equip you with the inspiration, encouragement, and clarity. You need to build a brand of your dreams. I’m your host, Bonnie Bakhtiari, brand designer, strategist, and founder of the Illume Retreat. From sustainable strategy to heartfelt encouragement. Each episode is designed to equip you with the tools you need to chase after your dreams, because you deserve a brand that empowers you to do what you love, connects with your dream clients and offers a deep sense of fulfillment along the way. So grab a cup of coffee and join me on this journey. Won’t you,

Hey friends, welcome to today’s episode of the brand strategy podcast, where I’m sharing some honest and truly vulnerable thoughts on shifting and reshaping your business to reflect your growth. And I’m excited to share this episode with you because I’m inviting you into more of my journey as an ever growing person, as an evolving entrepreneur, to show you what this looks like in action. So this is an episode for you. If you have been in a season where you feel like you’ve been going through some personal growth, or you’ve been receiving some clarity about who you are or how you wanna show up in your business. And you’re finding that you’re feeling a little bit limited about the way that your business is currently structured, or maybe the way that you show up within that business internally or externally. And you’re wanting to take some thoughtful steps in order to shift in order to grow in order to make some changes that allow you to be expansive in your business and stretch out and be your whole beautiful, bright, shiny self.

So this episode is to help encourage you on that journey and to show you that that is normal. Um, with, you know, 10 years of experience as a designer and strategist and entrepreneur, I can honestly say that this kind of evolution in our businesses is normal. And it’s one of the beautiful things that I think that we get to do as business owners, living in an age and doing business in an era where we get to be personal in our businesses, we get to have personal brands, or we get to show up as real and imperfect humans behind these businesses. And so I hope that today’s episode encourages you, shows you what’s possible and gives you some thoughts to consider on your own journey. So let’s get into it a couple months ago, I was going on on sabbatical and I wrote an in depth vulnerable email to my community, sharing that among other things, there was a shift coming that I recognized that like so many people in the online business space that the current iteration of our businesses was no longer serving us.

And when I looked at my business, especially when I looked at the way that I was marketing myself or utilizing social media, I was not resonating with that anymore. And so I had a couple choices. I could just suck it up and stick with it and see what happened or I could do what I would argue is the scarier thing for me anyway. And I could change, I could shift it. I could take my business, my marketing, my offers, and I could evolve them to a point that served me better because I am looking at my business as a machine that works for me, not as a prison that needs to keep me locked inside a constant way of operating of doing things or showing up. And so I started to make the shifts to identify what wasn’t working for me. And I started to look at how I could change those things.

So they would serve me better. Some of the things that I’ve realized over the months that I’ve been diving into this work, the months of introspection and the months of therapy that I’ve been going through this process is that my business does not honor my humanity to the full extent that I want it to. Sure I’ve done some great things. Like I’ve switched to a four day work week. I work less than 20 hours a week, and I still generate six plus figures a year. But the way that I felt the amount of emotion, the amount of energy that I was pouring into my business was not bringing me joy. And if it’s not life giving, there is no longevity possible. As far as I’m concerned, if I’m running my business in a way that technically works, but it feels like it is not honoring my energy or my knowledge or the way that I want to show up and connect with others, then it’s not really working.

So what I’m looking at is shifting the way that I show up and the way that my business moves around me, but that starts with me. I have to decide to be, be brave enough to take that step. I say brave, because making changes about the way that your business operates, the way that it’s structured, or the offers that you share that requires that you leave the safety of what is known. And so I’m in this process of leaving behind what has served me well, up until this point, I acknowledge the systems and the workflows and the trainings that have helped me on this journey. But I’m acknowledging that in order for me to step into what’s next, and what’s meant for me in this coming season, I need to do things differently. And some of the commitments that I am honoring through this journey is restructuring my business in a way that has equity at its very core, a way that honors the diversity, the equity and the inclusion that needs to show up in every business, across the world.

I am making the steps and taking the steps that I need to have a business that honors who I am. So yes, of course we love a well branded business and we love an on point brand persona, but I’m not committing to showing up as a character inside my business anymore. I’m committed to showing up in the real and the vulnerable ways that honestly were such a foundational part of how I grew my business in the beginning. So I’m showing up acknowledging that, yes, there are parts of this business that, that serve me, but I want for this business to be committed to things like diversity and equity and inclusion. I want for my business to honor the fact that I live with a chronic illness. And so my energy is not available to me 24, 7, 7 days a week, 365 days out the year. I’m acknowledging that my business needs to operate differently throughout the year to honor my energy and prioritize my wellbeing.

I’m acknowledging. And I’m valuing the fact that I am a queer person doing business in a predominantly heteronormative space. And I am committed to not only honoring my queerness through what I create, but also celebrating and creating a safe space for people who also identify as not fitting into the heteronormative. So society’s boxes. I am taking the action to change my business because this not only honors my humanity, but it, it celebrates my humanity. It celebrates who exactly I am. And I believe that when we embrace who we are and we build that into a part of, of our brands, we give ourselves the opportunity to not only be seen fully as who we are, but we also give ourselves the opportunity to connect with others who need our message, who will be encouraged or empowered by that message. And that is worth it. If you ask me,

Thank you so much for joining me today, friends, before you go, I would be so grateful to receive your feedback on the brand strategy podcast. If you enjoyed this episode or the podcast in general has helped you grow your brand. I’d really appreciate it. If you left us the review in iTunes, your positive reviews enable the brand strategy podcast to continue to grow and reach like-minded creatives. Just like you. Thank you for all your support and encouragement as together. We pursue building brands with purpose and intention until next time and cheer you on from Waco.

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My name is Bonnie – I’m a brand designer, strategist, and writer which all adds up to one eclectic conglomeration of qualities that enables me to serve you well! Past clients have dubbed me "the Joanna Gaines of brand design," and I've had more than a few call me a dream maker, a game changer, and a design wizard (my Harry Potter-loving heart didn't hate that one, let me tell you!). At the end of the day, I'm a big-hearted creative who will get teary-eyed as you share the heart behind your business; who will lose sleep over the perfect font pairings and color selections to bring your brand to life visually; and who will work tirelessly to empower, encourage, and equip you to share your work with the world intentionally. 

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