Woman Wednesday: Jessica K

*Note: Woman Wednesday is a part of our blog. Each Woman Wednesday post will feature a woman who would like to share information in the hopes of inspiring and motivating other women. Comments are welcome below.    


 

Q and A with Jessica from Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada  

 

“We are human. We can only learn from that and try to be better next time.”  

 

Q: What are you passionate about?

A: I’m passionate about so many things! I’m an enthusiastic person by nature, and everything I discover is always “the best thing ever” [laughs]. Things I love that have stuck are reading, cooking, red wine, and hiking.

I’m also super invested in (and passionate about) helping other women succeed in their own entrepreneurial businesses. Once upon a time, I was a freelance copywriter and found such success that I was able to quit my full-time job to focus on my writing. Now, I’m giving back and helping other women achieve success like I once did, and girl, it feels amazing!

 

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Q: What were your younger years like?

A: It’s funny because I don’t really feel like my younger years influenced where I am now. I’m completely different from my family and have always marched to the beat of my own drum. My family is very much the “you get a good job, work all day, come home to live your 4 hours of normal life until it’s time to wake up and do it again” mentality, whereas I’ve always been extremely expressive, creative, and nontraditional.

My mom often asks where the heck I came from [laughs]!

But you know what? I really enjoy that part of me. I love being able to teach my family new things and hearing the surprise in their voices when they hear my latest endeavor because it’s just so different from anything they are used to. We certainly learn from each other!

 

 

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Q: What is something valuable you’ve learned that you’d like others to know?

A: I’m an extremely positive person by nature and genuinely love helping others find their way. Over the years, I’ve really learned to be accepting of others and keep the judgment at the door because you never know what someone else has been through. Above all, always be kind!

Of course, I’m not perfect and neither are you. Try and practice these things, and if you catch yourself being judgmental, don’t beat yourself up. It happens, we are human. We can only learn from that and try to be better next time.

 

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Q: What does feminism mean to you? 

A: To me, feminism is about equality. No matter what gender we are, we all deserve to be treated as equal human beings. And that’s it. It’s quite simple really. Treat others with kindness, respect, and equality. Women are strong, and we deserve the same treatment as any man. Girl power!

 

 

Connect with me!

You can find me here:

Facebook

Instagram

Website 

https://www.bravedigitalcoaching.com/

 

 

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Woman Wednesday: Katie

*Note: Woman Wednesday is a part of our blog. Each Woman Wednesday post will feature a woman who would like to share information in the hopes of inspiring and motivating other women. Comments are welcome below. 


 

Q and A with Katie, Madison County, New York 

“In high school, I thought I would be married, making good money at a reliable job, and adopting a couple horses by now. None of those things have happened so far, and I’m actually very happy that they haven’t! I have changed course so many more times, and it’s felt very hopeless and confusing at a couple points along the way. In the course of all of that turmoil and changing directions though, I have grown immensely. The setbacks have taught me strength and opened my eyes to ideas and opportunities I would have never imagined before recently. I am always looking forward, always feeling hungry for more.”

 

Q: What are you passionate about?

A: I’ll answer this with what is probably a very broad, cliché answer: I am passionate about love and happiness. There isn’t anything more important in life than these two things, and they mean something different to each person you talk to.

 

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For me, being passionate about love means building a life around the people and animals who are special to me and making sure I dedicate enough energy into spending quality time with them. Just like anybody, I have suffered the loss of beloved relatives, friends, and animals. I’ve grown stronger from these experiences, and I have realized just how precious the present is and how immensely my relationships affect my inner peace. Love is a nice segway into the “happiness” portion of my answer – the two go hand in hand for me.  It can be difficult to pin down what brings you genuine happiness in life, and I think I am finally starting to understand the meaning of it for myself! For me, happiness comes from finding fulfillment and joy in the things I do every day. I came to this realization through working on my career in jobs that weren’t completely fulfilling or positive for me and my quest for happiness. They may be right for other people, but not for the entrepreneurial spirit that has always been building inside me.

 

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Pictured: Designs by K. Marie Design Co.

 

I left my office job at the beginning of 2018 to pursue my own design & illustration business, K. Marie Design Co., and I have since found a genuine sense of happiness and fulfillment I always knew was missing. This change put a lot into perspective for me and it’s been a challenge, but I can tell you one thing; I’ve been able to focus on my passions for love and happiness a lot more since I made the jump. I’ve never felt surer of anything. Working for myself also meant having the flexibility to accept a position teaching a design class at my alma mater, Cazenovia College, during the fall 2018 semester. You never know what may happen when you take brave new steps. Nothing worth having ever comes easy, including the process of making your abstract dreams and passions part of your everyday reality.

 

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Pictured: Designs by K. Marie Design Co.

 

Q: What is something valuable you’ve learned that you’d like others to know?

A: This is something I have learned recently, something very important. It is okay to change course! It’s okay to change plans, and it’s okay to question yourself. I grew up desperately wanting to be part of the equine industry, and then it blew up in my face when I went to do that in college. I then spent my time honing my design skills hoping for the perfect 9-5 job after college, and that expectation ultimately failed me, too. In high school, I thought I would be married, making good money at a reliable job, and adopting a couple of horses by now. None of those things have happened so far, and I’m actually very happy that they haven’t. I have changed course so many more times, and it’s felt very hopeless and confusing at a couple points along the way. In the course of all of that turmoil and changing directions though, I have grown immensely. The setbacks have taught me strength and opened my eyes to ideas and opportunities I would have never imagined before recently. I am always looking forward, always feeling hungry for more.

 

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Pictured: Designs by K. Marie Design Co.

 

Don’t limit yourself by what you, your peers, or society tell you your life “should” look like at any stage in your journey. Take your time, try different things, and learn when it is time, to be honest with yourself by recognizing that something may not be right for you… and make a change. You will find your way – it may be hard to believe when you’re in the low points, but as long as you keep pushing forward, things will work out for you.

 

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Q: What were your younger years like?

A: My childhood was wonderful – very family oriented, which has definitely had a big impact on the person I am today. My parents are very nurturing and generous people, and I never understood just how much that really meant at the time! My mom stayed home with me, my sister, my brother, and our dog. We didn’t have a lot of the material things other kids had, but I never once felt alone or unloved. I wouldn’t trade that for anything. My mom and dad continue to be a huge influence on me today. They have always been very supportive, and they encourage me to do things that make me happy.

 

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Pictured: Artwork by K. Marie Design Co.

 

This family support has been vital since I left home for my freshman semester of college at The University of Findlay in Ohio, where I was planning to be an equine business major. Things didn’t work out at Findlay due to a lot of personal things I was going through at the time, but my family was behind me through it all. I eventually went home to NJ, spent the spring semester of my freshman year at the community college, and then transferred to Cazenovia College in the fall of 2012. After about two weeks at Caz as an equine business major, I realized that my lifelong love for horses was better off as a hobby rather than a career in a fast-paced, unforgiving industry. I changed my major to visual communications to chase my other love besides horses, which has always been art. I’ve always loved to draw, and the community at Cazenovia helped me find my feet and discover smart ways to marry illustration and graphic design together. I’ve been through quite a lot since I left home eight years ago, and it’s all played a part in making me into the creative, free business owner I am today! I can confidently say that I am excited rather than terrified by a future of unknowns and constant development in myself and in my creative career.

 

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Q: What would you like others to learn from your story?

A: I’d like others to learn that you have to do things that make your soul happy. Don’t settle for a job, a relationship, a major, or anything that does not feel right to you. You are the only one who can make good things happen for yourself, but you are also the only one who can prevent good things from happening by becoming complacent and accepting less than you know you deserve. Evaluate your life and your happiness. Do some brainstorming and soul searching and think back to the dreams that lit up your eyes when you were younger. What do you want your life to look like when you’re 90 years old and thinking about your past? Is this what you want to remember? Maybe it’s time for a change!

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Pictured: Design by K. Marie Design Co.

Q: What does feminism mean to you? 

A: Feminism means pride and equality. It means building other women up and encouraging other women to pursue their passions and make their marks on the world. A lot of people out there will use feminism as a shield to hide behind while they try to tear men down. Those people are not true feminists. Feminism is important to me because we have been pushed around and treated like we’re lesser than men in a lot of different ways. I see a lot of progress for women in the modern world, and I think it’s fantastic that men and women are joining together to make the world a more justified place for people of all genders. There will always be room for improvement, as with anything, but the fact that there is more awareness and more action is a great start.

 

 

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Pictured: Sketch by K. Marie Design Co.

 

Connect with Katie:

 

Website: www.kmariedesignco.com

 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kmariedesignco

 

Instagram: www.instagram.com/kmariedesignco

 

Etsy Shop: www.etsy.com/shop/kMarieDesignCo

 

 

 

 

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Woman Wednesday: Jen

*Note: Woman Wednesday is a part of our blog. Each Woman Wednesday post will feature a woman who would like to share information in the hopes of inspiring and motivating other women. Comments are welcome below. 


 

Q and A with Jen, Green Bay, Wisconsin

“You can do what you set your mind to. Everything takes work, and learning is a constant part of life. If your dream is to one day own a business that makes money, you need to make sure you have all the skills and knowledge to make that happen.”

 

Q: What are you passionate about?

A: In a few words, my passions are my family (including my collies and cat), my business, and flyball. I own Candy Social Media. I am a digital marketer helping real estate agents and mortgage brokers generate exclusive prequalified leads. I also offer social media management, social media strategy, and social media marketing and consulting. My main focus, however, is on generating leads for real estate agents.

 

 

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I found this passion when I realized that my previous passion for technology simply wasn’t there anymore. I felt the fire burning out. Back in 2003, I was overwhelmed with technology, and I was excited to help people. I finished my degree in network security from the local technical college. I was president of the computer science club there for two years while attending college. I really enjoyed being in charge of the club, and I enjoyed the extra responsibilities involved of being president.  I moved on to get my bachelor’s degree in business management. I enjoyed learning about business management. I yearned to be in front of technology. I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it and learn more about it.  From 2007, I have worked in the technology field in various roles from being level 1 support to network administrator. All of these required some sort of certification requiring me to renew it every three years. As if spending 10k on my education wasn’t enough, Corporate America wanted me to spend another $500 to $10,000 dollars to show that I know my stuff.

 

 

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Pictured: Jen and her collie, Candy.

 

I was tired of not being recognized for my knowledge and education that I worked hard for. I wasn’t able to move up in management positions because of my lack of certification.  One day, the job that I enjoyed required the support team to learn to programme of C++ or C#. I knew that it was too detailed for me to do. I quit my job and decided that I wanted to work for myself. I wanted a career change.

 

I saw this 9-5 killer ad on Facebook. I signed up for the webinar. I didn’t have the money to pay for the course, but I talked with other people who joined the course. It changed their lives, and they were able to make a living. The business involved creating websites that focused on Search Engine Optimization (SEO). SEO is difficult to keep up with because of the fact that almost every second, it’s changing. By the time I finally knew what I was doing, something new came out. I tried that for about 6 months. It didn’t work out. I went back to work for someone else at a college. The people there showed me that I didn’t have a passion for helping people in technology. I was reminded that I didn’t want to work for someone else. I wanted to make myself money; I did not want to make money for someone else. I saw another ad for a social media manager. People pay you to play on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, et cetera. I spent the last year learning about how to engage, the software required, the content required, et cetera. This is all great, but you aren’t making money from your knowledge. It’s an expensive hobby. From there, I signed up for one more class of how to prospect your clients and reaching out to our potential clients. Then I jumped in! 

 

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Up until about October, I was friends with a digital marketer who was looking for different people to complete his challenges. I signed up for his challenge and immediately was blown away. The first thing I learned was sales. I learned about how to get the clients. And from October, I have been able to gain the knowledge and confidence for me to put myself out there connecting with real estate agents and mortgage brokers. I was too scared to reach out to clients. I thought if I friended them on Facebook and made nice with them and offering them advice about social media, they will ask me to be their social media manager. Nope. This isn’t the way things work. You have to put yourself out there constantly to make yourself known. I have reached out more to potential clients in the past three days than I have in the past year.

 

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Outside of business, I am passionate about health and pets! I have three collies and one cat.  My company is named after my dog, Candy. Candy is a 14-month-old border collie who gets to travel the country with me (attending flyball seminars and tournaments). Flyball is the past time passion that I enjoy doing when I am not working. It’s something that makes me happy.  I was able to train Candy from my past experience training with Gunner. Gunner is a 2-year-old border collie who knows flyball, but he seems to have a jock mentality [laughs].

 

Q: How has your past experience shaped you?

A: All of my past experiences and education and personality really helped to develop who I am today. The motivation and ambition have to be there every day. Also, never let your disability get in the way of your dreams! I have a stuttering disability and rather than hiding behind it, I use it to my advantage to work harder! I am sacrificing time being spent on training my dogs and time with my boyfriend, but in the end, I am putting time into my company, which means that I am putting time into myself. I am finally living the life that I want to without having to worry about paying those bills or worrying about my cell phone bill being cut off! And it’s nice knowing that if I need an extra day off, I don’t have to call my boss hoping that she or he will give me the time off.

 

 

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Q: What would you like others to learn from your story?

A: You can do what you set your mind to. Everything takes work, and learning is a constant part of life. If your dream is to one day own a business that makes money, you need to make sure you have all the skills and knowledge needed to make that happen. If you would like to do what I do, you will also need the right software. It is also important to have the capital to put into your business. I worked a part-time job to have money to put into my business.

Also, always make time for those who matter in your life.
Happy Holidays from my family to yours!
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Join Jen’s Social Women Group! Click here!

Click here to check out Candy Social Media.

 

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Woman Wednesday: Raquel

*Note: Woman Wednesday is a part of our blog. Each Woman Wednesday post will feature a woman who would like to share information in the hopes of inspiring and motivating other women. Comments are welcome below. 


 

Q and A with Raquel, King of Prussia, Pennsylvania

“You never really know what someone is going through despite their outward appearance or your depiction of them.”

 

Q: What are you passionate about?

A: I would say I am passionate about many issues and problems, but I am most passionate about freedom for farmed animals. I have always been a huge animal lover, and dogs have been my best friends in my life when I felt alone. I always fought hard to raise awareness for the cruel dog meat trade in Asia and never realized I was being hypocritical when it came to my diet. I became vegan once I educated myself about how these animals are abused and tormented and how selfish it is for me to decide my taste buds are worth more than an innocent being’s life. Pigs are more intelligent and just as emotional as dogs, if not more, so who am I to take their life? My passion has driven me to decide to one day have my own animal sanctuary for these innocent beings once I am successful enough in the modeling industry to support these animals.

Click here to watch a short video on the similarities between animals and people. 

 

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Pictured: Raquel modeling My Lilianas. Photography by Ollie Productions. 

 

My interests include mostly spending time with my family and dog, going on long walks, sewing, and helping others when I can.

I work as a full time model and travel, which has been amazing so far!

 

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Pictured: Raquel and her younger sisters.

 

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Pictured: Raquel modeling My Lilianas. Photography by Ollie Productions. 

 

Q:What is something valuable you’ve learned that you’d like others to know?

A: I have learned to truly not judge someone for what I think their life seems to be. You never really know what someone is going through despite their outward appearance or your depiction of them.

 

 

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Pictured: Raquel modeling My Lilianas. Photography by Ollie Productions. 

 

Q: What were your younger years like?

A: My childhood has been something that was hard at the time, but now I am so glad that I went through these things to build who I am today. My dad was never a great father figure, and he was not home most of the time. If he were, it was just miserable. I became an extremely anxious person which has stayed with me. In high school, I did not have many real friends, and it was really hard for me when it came to lunch time. I always sat alone or in a teacher’s room, because I hated being alone in the library or lunch room. It really killed me emotionally, at the time. My mom has always been there for me helping me everyday when I feel like everything is spiraling, and I am forever grateful for her impact and support in my life.

 

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Pictured: Raquel and her younger sisters.

 

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Pictured: Raquel modeling My Lilianas. Photography by Ollie Productions. 

 

Q: What would you like others to learn from your story?

A: I would like others to educate themselves and truly research how corrupt the meat and dairy industries are and how this hell is ruining the environment, their health, and torturing millions of animals each year. Animals are no lesser than humans and deserve to roam happily. I would also like people to take away that you never know what someone is going through.

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Pictured: Raquel modeling a faux blanket and My Lilianas. Photography by Ollie Productions. 

 

Check out Raquel on the My Lilianas Commercials:

 

 

 

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Woman Wednesday: Corrie

*Note: Woman Wednesday is a part of our blog. Each Woman Wednesday post will feature a woman who would like to share information in the hopes of inspiring and motivating other women. Comments are welcome below. 

 


 

Q and A with Corrie, Baltimore County, Maryland

Teacher, Animal Lover, Towson University Alumni

“I wasn’t a failure or a quitter for changing my major. I was making myself happy. I also learned that it is very hard to stick with something when people are against you, but in the end, it is worth it.” 

 

Q: What are you passionate about?
A: My passions include teaching, animals, and conservation.
I am currently a 4th grade teacher. I absolutely love teaching. I feel at home in a classroom surrounded by students. My students bring out the best in me, and my goal is that I can do the same for them.

 

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I didn’t always want to be a teacher. When I was younger, I saw myself working with animals. My first job was being a kennel technician at an animal hospital. I eventually moved on to be a veterinary technician, which I continued to do all throughout college. While working at the animal hospital, I started being a nanny for a doctor that I worked with. I instantly fell in love with being around the kids. I really enjoyed helping them with their homework. I started to rethink my entire life path, and I became a teacher.
My love and compassion for animals never went away. Being a teacher allows me to teach my students about animals and conservation. I enjoy telling my students about all my pets- most of them are rescues. We talk often about the impact we have on our environment and the animals we share our environment with. I constantly let them know that they can be an advocate for animals and our environment in many ways.

 

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Q: What were your younger years like?
A: My family has had the biggest impact on my life. I was raised by my father. He was a single parent raising myself and my brothers. My dad worked hard to give us a great life. Every day, I strive to make him proud. Growing up in a family of all men wasn’t always easy. Let’s face it; girls and boys are different. I didn’t have a lot of confidence around other girls and women. I wasn’t used to being around them. My dad is amazing and always encouraged me to be a strong woman. He even bought me books about how to be a strong woman when I was in middle school. He knew how important it was for me to feel comfortable in my own skin.

 

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When I was in college, I started as a biology major. I was almost finished with my degree when I decided to pursue teaching. Most people were very supportive, but of course, some were not. People thought I was crazy when I told them I was switching majors. They questioned my motives. They often brought up my love for animals, and they brought up the cost of education. There were a few times when I almost decided not to switch majors and to just stick with what I started. I’m glad I didn’t. I learned a few valuable lessons from that experience. One thing I learned is that change isn’t a bad thing. I wasn’t a failure or a quitter for changing my major. I was making myself happy. I also learned that it is very hard to stick with something when people are against you, but in the end, it is worth it. The last thing I learned was that a great support system is so important. My husband, Tony, who was my fiancé at the time, supported me in my decision to no end. He was my biggest advocate and supporter. I would like others to learn that change can be a good thing, to always stick with what your mind and heart are telling you, and to keep positive people in your life.

 

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Q:What does feminism mean to you?
A: What does feminism mean to me? That used to be a very hard question for me. I honestly used to believe that feminism was a negative word. I thought it was a word that was used to describe women who hated men. I was raised by my father and brothers, so, of course I didn’t hate men. It took me a while to realize that feminism doesn’t have to be negative. To me, feminism means believing in yourself as a woman. It means knowing that you can do anything and everything you put your mind to. Feminism means wanting the best for all women. It means wanting to see women succeed in their careers and life.

 

 

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