Notes for the Curious: Edition #57


How are you doing? It's been a busy few weeks here. I led two sessions at the WIT Regatta Taster Meet Up here in Amsterdam on Why Women Turn on Each Other. Fascinating, I have a lot to say on this topic so it was really good to be in the role of facilitator for other people's stories. I'm looking forward to gathering together more stories of women in the tech world when the WIT Regatta rolls into town again in October. For my North American readers, keep an eye on their website for events in Seattle and Vancouver. I've never seen anything like the Regatta before. It is definitely not your average conference and I'm excited to be part of it. 

Summer is fast approaching in the Netherlands and with it the first round of my new Change Maker Collective. This round is full, and September's round is filling up. I realised after the last Notes that while I had talked to you about what it is, I hadn't actually gone into many details, and there still aren't any details on the site. So for those of you who would like to know more, this is the pdf I have been sending out to people who expressed interest in the Collective. And if you would like to grab a place for September (with a bonus mini-focus session to use this Summer before the September Round starts) then make sure you've completed the Intake Form.

In the meantime, let's get on with the Notes...

1) Pursuing happiness

Everyone wants to be happy, right? That's the goal. But what if our pursuit of happiness is actually making us more unhappy? For me, I am much more likely to pursue things which engage my curiosity than to actively seek out things that I believe will make me happy. Happiness tends to be a by-product of my curiosity and the meaning I look for. Which is exactly with Emily Esfahani Smith covers in her highly engaging TED talk

2) Procrastinate more

An inability to procrastinate is not a problem that I possess. I have always been a down to the wire kind of a girl. I am led, as the article says, by the instant gratification monkey. It seems that I need the fear of an impending deadline to get me motivated. But I know that there are many of you who sit on the opposite end of that spectrum to me. Oh how I envy you! You seem so organised and on top of everything. But what if we both came away from our respective extremes? Adam Grant explores the benefits of procrastination in this article as he attempts to turn his pre-crastination into procrastination. As well as giving us procrastinators some valuable tips on how to use it in a more beneficial way.

3) Stop worrying

Talking to other business owners in groups these days I find that we spend an awful lot of our time worrying about what other people think of us. We worry about what our clients think, what our potential clients think, we worry about what other business owners think of us. Frankly, it sounds exhausting. Wouldn't it be better if we could just stop worrying? Here are some tips to help

4) Courage over comfort

Notes reader Eva sent me this beautiful piece by Brene Brown and I made a last minute switch to the planned content for this edition so that I could share it with you. I spend most of my time on the borderline of discomfort. Many of the things I do with my time are not innately comfortable to me. It was not comfortable to start getting up on stage and talking about the issues which most deeply affect and drive me. It was not comfortable to become the visible figurehead of my not-for-profit foundation. It was not comfortable to stand up and say, I don't think we're developing small businesses on strong foundations and I believe we can do better. Not comfortable. Not comfortable. Not comfortable. And don't even get me started on the courage it takes to fail and hold your hands up publicly and openly to that failure. But I also believe that when you do put courage before comfort when you get comfortable with discomfort, that is where the most profound change can occur and that is a skill that we spend little time developing. What do you think? 

5) Money traps

My clients and I seem to be a in season of squashing our money gremlins. What does that mean? Well, something I have come to realise in myself and in many of my clients is that whether we think we do or not, we all have a lot of emotion wrapped up in our approach to money. And it is hurting our businesses. I do not pretend to be an expert in this area, I am most definitely the student, but I am committed to learning more about why I approach money in ways that are not necessarily beneficial to myself or my business so that I can support my clients as they start to unravel their own money stories. If you are also on the student track with money, this article outlining 12 mental money traps that we fall into is an excellent starting place. And when you are ready to dive deeper, here are my favourite books on money.

Until the next Notes,


P.S. For my Netherlands-based readers, I am helping Facebook set up their first Community Leadership Circle in Amsterdam. Community Leadership Circles are local chapters of Facebook Group, Page, and Event admins who meet regularly to connect and learn from one another. The goal of the program is to build stronger communities by supporting local leaders both online and off and empower local community leaders across the world. These forums give highly-engaged admins the opportunity to share their best practices and participate in leadership development sessions. Right now, we are looking for people who admin groups or pages with around 1,000+ participants who have regular active engagement, based within 30km of Amsterdam (or willing to travel regularly to Amsterdam for the live events) and who are building a meaningful community that is not part of their business as the Circles are focused on community building, not brand building. If you are an admin who fits that criteria, you know an admin who fits that criteria or you belong to a group or page that you believe would benefit from being in the Circle, please let me know by replying to this email so that I can add them to the Amsterdam Circle Group.

Who am I and who do I help? I’m Emmy McCarthy and I help small business owners build and grow businesses that make impact and income with more ease and less stress.

If you would like my help to get get clear, get focused and take action to reach your business goals, these are the ways we can work together. 

  1. The Change Maker Programme - A 5 month incubator programme to work through the structure, systems and strategy of your business and move you from overwhelmed at all the things to confident leader of your business alongside a small group of peers. The next cohort begins in September 2018. Applications are open.
  2. The Change Maker Collective - Strategy, support and accountability for established business owners who thrive in a community driven environment. New cohorts start every three months. June = Full, September = 5 spots left. Apply for your place now.
  3. 1:1 Mentoring - For business owners who are ready to transform their business with personal, actionable strategies to achieve their goals. I have a very limited number of available slots for business brainstorms or more intensive mentoring programmes. Next available programme start date = mid-July 2018.

❓ Do you have a burning question that you think I can answer? I don't have all of the answers, but that just gives me a good excuse to learn more. Hit reply to this email to send me your question.

🎙 Would you like me to speak on your podcast or present to your audience? I'd love to! Visit my speaking page to get in touch. 

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