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Embracing the Journey: A Solo Entrepreneur's Tale of Inspiration and Balance

When I, Ivonne Ramirez-DeBlois, made the life-altering decision to transition into full-time entrepreneurship with B&I Consulting, little did I know that the seeds of inspiration were about to be sown in my professional journey. The catalyst? An awe-inspiring piece of art by Morgan Harper Nichols that I stumbled upon and couldn't resist adding to my collection.

Nichols' creation featured a powerful message that struck a chord deep within me: "oh how beautiful you are learning to fly in your very own way." Accompanied by the imagery of a rising sun and a graceful hummingbird in flight, this artwork became more than just a decoration on my wall—it became a daily affirmation, a reminder that my unique journey was something to be celebrated.

As a solopreneur, the entrepreneurial path often feels like a race against time. The fear of slowing down can be overwhelming, as it's closely tied to the notion that any pause may translate to a loss of livelihood. This week I came upon another piece from Nichol's’ with a new profound message “as you learn to fly, may you also learn to rest…for both will prepare you for the journey ahead.” This new message is a hummingbird resting on a branch with both a night and day scene. Nichols' profound messages sparked a paradigm shift within me. It served as a gentle nudge, urging me to embrace the beauty of my own pace and trust the process of learning to "fly" in my distinctive way while understanding that “rest prepares me for what is ahead.”

Morgan Harper Nichols, through her art, has became a virtual mentor, an expander, guiding me towards a healthier perspective on productivity and success. The symbolism of the hummingbird, a creature known for its agility and resilience, resonated with the essence of entrepreneurship. It is also my favorite bird that I spend countless time watching in the summertime. Nichols’ works remind me that, just like the hummingbird navigating the vast expanse of the sky, I too could chart my course with grace, determination and incorporating rest.

Amidst this transformative journey, another influential figure and expander entered the scene: Dr. Shaunna Payne Gold. I met Dr. Payne Gold when she was my professor during my Masters coursework. I always admired her work from afar and took the leap to connect with her to gain insight on owning our own businesses. A recent conversation with Dr. Payne Gold highlighted the importance of steering clear of becoming our own toxic bosses. We delved into the necessity of creating a work environment that nurtures rather than drains, emphasizing the critical role of self-care in sustaining long-term success.

One of the key takeaways from our discussion was the vital need to avoid the pitfalls of burnout—a topic that is often overlooked in the world of entrepreneurship. Dr. Payne Gold's insights echoed Nichols' messages, reinforcing the idea that rest is not a luxury but a critical component of the entrepreneurial process. Burnout, as she emphasized, is not a badge of honor; it's a warning sign that our journey may be veering off course.

In the spirit of gratitude, I extend a heartfelt thank you to Morgan Harper Nichols for her inspiring artwork that serves as a constant reminder of the beauty in learning to fly at our own pace. Additionally, a shoutout to Dr. Shaunna Payne Gold for shedding light on the dangers of self-imposed toxicity and the importance of maintaining a balance that fuels rather than depletes.

As I navigate the uncharted skies of entrepreneurship, I carry with me the wisdom of these two remarkable women. Their guidance has become my compass, steering me towards a path that values rest, celebrates individuality, and embraces the profound beauty of the journey—because, as Nichols eloquently puts it, "oh how beautiful you are learning to fly in your very own way."

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