Wash, Rinse, Repeat

May has been a wild ride. Not much more or less than April, but built of different things.

Today, while catching up with a colleague in a quick "I'm gonna make sure you're still breathing" call, she asked why I haven't been writing for the blog. The answer is simple, I have little time to do more than true, results generating work and care for my sweet family.

She didn't like my answer. Writing is good for my soul. I have so many stories to share. People want to hear what we're up to. The public loves the behind the scenes stuff. I have so much experience building businesses, I should share it all.

Mmmm. Hmmmmm. 

Good for my soul, yes. I'll give her that one. Writing is both an escape and a full frontal that's equally liberating. I do have so many stories to tell. They're coming. Three books in the works, one almost ready to go to the editor. Landmarks, the story of my wild life to this point, coming later this year. A yet untitled number on building COTERIE. I'm considering "Tacos, Turning Points + Turncoats" or "The Pie Shop, a Journey to Serving Women Worldwide". I'll keep you posted.

People want to hear what I'm up to? I'm keeping this movement moving. Keeping my team inspired, motivated, plugged in and steeled against the craziness of being part of a startup. Led by a woman, with an all female cast of characters. We're on the road a lot. On the phone even more, and working our asses off to create fresh, innovative, inclusive communities for people to thrive in. While keeping it all together on a shoestring because our bootstrap wore out about six months ago. Learning who to talk to, trust + choose to work with as we grow this vision to an unprecedented scale. While managing the normal person daily stuff of life. Like laundry that doesn't hang itself up. Or carpool and end of year projects for big kids who still need direction, TLC and more than any single human can give well on a daily basis. And these kids are the best of the best a mama could ask for. If I had two extra hours in each day I'd sleep for 30 minutes of that and give the other 90 to them, so I'd be a slightly better version of my tired self when enjoying the extra time together.

The public loves the behind the scenes stuff? I'm going to call bullshit on that one. The public loves chewing on other people's truths. They're somehow infinitely more palatable than our own. Truth #1, be good to the people who are there for you when shit is hard because when things get harder you'll be surprised {unless you've built hard things before} how many people will run in the opposite direction. Truth #2, be prepared for less sleep, money, social capital and {insert chosen vice} than you need to sustain your sanity. As one successful entrepreneur said to me recently "everyone who's built something big has experienced the thing where you question every single decision you make and then the recovery decision. Twice. In the same day." You think we're crazy? We're way ahead of you people. Truth #3, there's no secret sauce. Buzz kill, right? Not all truths are delicious.

I love writing. I aim to do it more frequently, just as I intend to exercise more, spend more time walking on the beach and mastering my crepe making skills. Lately I've been writing term sheets, investor decks, equity agreements, checks... lots of checks. Praying they all clear.  🙏🏻 

Lessons to share on building a business? Stop reading all the formulas for success. They're nonsense and extremely distracting from the work you need to do. The only formula is work + more work = results. Get back to work.

To my sweet friend who called me out today, thank you for reminding me what fun it is to sit down and share all of my thoughts in words on the virtual blackboard in the classroom disguised as the internet. I'm not sure that it's all relateable but it's all real. Totally and completely imperfect in its execution, even if it's well designed. Maybe the magic lies in connecting those stories so that we can all be a little kinder not only to each other, but also to ourselves.

Until next time...

jb