One of the most important things I've learned these last 5 months is that working for yourself doesn't mean you have to approach things alone. It can feel incredibly daunting and overwhelming to remain inside your own head without brainstorming out loud and getting the support, advice, accountability, and sometimes the kick-in-the-rear you need. Many of my friends and peers are doing something entirely different, which is totally okay, but it made me wonder, Where do I turn?
Enter Instagram, the crazy app that has opened so many doors for me I swear. That's where I met Cyndie Spiegel (pictured above) who is a business strategist and coach for creative entrepreneurs. The woman is unreal, you guys. Her diverse background as a fashion accessories developer for luxury and private labels to her teaching expertise at Parsons and FIT to her yoga certification which seeps through to her zen-like (but badass) demeanor is a recipe for someone who truly knows her stuff and is excited to instill that knowledge and guidance in others. Instantly inspired, I joined her group called The Collective of Us which turned out to be the smartest move I could have made.
I feel incredibly fortunate to be a part of this online collective of female entrepreneurs which helps build and grow small businesses through strategy, community, coaching, and peer-to-peer support. These women are top notch. They're all over the country designing and manufacturing everything from textiles to children's clothing to jewelry to goal-oriented journals to footwear to glitter banners that sell like hot cakes. They're helping people with their businesses, events, style, and overall wellness. They're doers, not dreamers. I've been able to secure some truly exciting opportunities this past stretch, all because of Cyndie and the collective's encouragement.
Through private Facebook groups and Skype calls, we hold what feels like mini board meetings (often giggle-filled!) to discuss the latest. It's invaluable because you're not only giving and receiving feedback, you're learning from others going through completely different (but oh-so-similar) conundrums in different industries or stages of the game. We're constantly sharing resources with one another and there's been so many times where I'm thinkin', "Um, how am I just learning about this?" or, "Oh THAT'S how they do it." And it's also so very rewarding to finally share some of my own creative juice I've learned along the way.
Are you a creative entrepreneur interested in joining The Collective of Us? You can! Go here to sign up for more information. Do you simply want to follow along to see what the crew is up to? Follow us here on Instagram.
*picture was from last week when Cyndie came to my neighborhood for a lunch date. Love her!