When you are not honest with yourself, you end up living a disconnected life.
You may feel connected to your life when you get the dopamine hits of likes and follows or public affirmations from colleagues. Though, let’s be honest, these external validations are never satisfying for long.
If you live a life where your worthiness and safety are woven into the opinions of others, it makes sense why so many cling to a life that is unsustainable and out of alignment.
And it often takes a big crisis to push us out of the grind of the life we are living to reflect and re-evaluate.
Whatever the catalyst is, getting honest with yourself and your circumstances is the only way through figuring out what next steps to take.
In a world of highlight reels and social media filters, being honest can feel counter-cultural. And stepping into radical honesty can stir up a lot of emotion.
Choosing to be honest with yourself and others definitely has risks. But you will also experience the rewards of deeper connection and meaningful work.
Today’s guest rebuilt her life from the inside out after a painful bankruptcy. It was not until she got radically honest with herself that she regained her footing and did the work that has allowed her to build a business and a life that is aligned and healthy.
Through her podcast, The Bold Money Revolution as well as her program, The Bold Profit Academy, Tara Newman supports service providers in creating premium offers and scalable sales systems so they can significantly increase their profitability.
Tara teaches leaders to run businesses without sacrificing their health, relationships, or integrity by establishing behaviors, habits, and rituals aligned with their vision of success.
Listen to the full episode to hear:
Learn more about Tara Newman:
Learn more about Rebecca:
Scroll Down for The Full Episode Transcript:
Tara Newman: You would have seen an affluent young woman who was 30 years old getting out of her gold Toyota Highlander with her beautiful newborn son in her Ann Taylor suit, walking up to a home in a very affluent neighborhood that she could no longer afford. Not too long after that, like, maybe halfway in, maybe two years in, I just couldn’t take it anymore. I couldn’t take the pressure of upholding this thing that was not really true, and so, I started to just become very radically honest.
[Inspirational Intro Music]
Rebecca Ching: In a world of highlight reels and social media filters, being honest can feel counter-cultural. The casualty of living a highly curated life is losing touch with what is true and honest in ourselves and others. We end up chasing an illusion of success, love, and belonging. This path leaves us feeling empty and lost. When you forget how to be honest with yourself, you also lose your capacity for courage and discomfort, and this keeps you doing what feels easier instead of what is right.
But this is unsustainable. If you choose to be honest about your own circumstances, you'll face some hard truths, and stepping into radical honesty can stir up a lot of emotion. For example, when you choose to be honest about your mental health struggles, it may mean facing fears of rejection and feeling misunderstood, or maybe when you choose to be honest about being treated poorly by a coworker, you risk backlash, or when you choose to be honest with yourself about your values instead of going along to get along, you risk not being included and losing your community.
Yeah, radical honesty may feel terrifying, and choosing to be honest with yourself and others definitely has its risks, but you'll also experience the rewards of deeper connection and meaningful work.
I'm Rebecca Ching, and you're listening to The Unburdened Leader, the show that goes deep with leaders whose burdens have inspired their life's work. Our goal is to learn how they’ve addressed these burdens, how they rise from them and become better and more impactful leaders of themselves and others.
When you're not honest with yourself, you end up living a disconnected life. You may feel connected to your life when you get the dopamine hits of likes and follows or public affirmations from colleagues, though, let's be honest, these external validations never seem to feel enough and are rarely satisfying, but you keep plugging away, staying the course laid out by a set of rules and cultural norms that feel like they're the only way to do life and work. I know many leaders who fight to hold the façade of the image they want the world to see, and if you live a life where your worthiness and safety are woven into the opinions of others, it makes sense why so many cling to a life that is unsustainable and out of alignment. You may not even know you're disconnected from yourself and the life you're living until things come crashing down, or maybe you're like me where you know something's off with your life and work but feel stuck or unclear about what could or should change.
It, often, takes a big crisis to push us out of the grind of life we're living to reflect and reevaluate. It could be the loss of an important relationship that takes away your ability to function in your usual capacity, or it could be a physical or mental health crisis that shuts down your ability to do business as usual. Maybe your place of work asks something of you that pushes you over the edge to where you can't tolerate or take working there anymore.
Whatever the catalyst is that brings things crashing down, getting honest with yourself and your circumstances is the only way through figuring out what next steps to take. This often means choosing between keeping up the illusion of a life you're living or [Laughs] doing the tedious and, often, slow work of rebuilding your life from the inside out.
That is exactly what today's Unburdened Leader guest did. She rebuilt her life from the inside out after a painful bankruptcy. It wasn’t until she got radically honest with herself, did she regain her footing and did the work that has allowed her to build a business and a life that is aligned and healthy. Through her podcast, The Bold Money Revolution, as well as her program The Bold Profit Academy, Tara Newman supports service providers in creating premium offers and scalable sales systems so they can significantly increase their profitability. As a profit for a certified consultant, she ensures women can pay themselves well, hire a team, and leverage their small business to create generational wealth. Using decades of entrepreneurial experience and a Master's in Organizational Psychology, Tara is uniquely qualified to teach leaders to run businesses without sacrificing their health, relationships, or integrity by establishing behaviors, habits, and rituals aligned with their vision of success.
Now, listen to how Tara unpacks her experience of bankruptcy and how it inspires her work today supporting business owners. Pay attention to how Tara deepened her capacity and confidence through her relationship with the numbers in her business, and notice what shifted in Tara in her view of herself after her recent ADHD diagnosis. Now, please welcome Tara Newman to The Unburdened Leader podcast.
Tara, welcome to the show.
Tara Newman: Thanks, Rebecca. Thanks for having me! I'm excited to be here with you.
Rebecca Ching: I'm excited about this conversation.
Tara Newman: Me too!
Rebecca Ching: I've been wanting to have this conversation with you for a while on this show, and I'm glad we finally could make it happen. In typical Unburdened Leader fashion, I want to drop in [Laughs] to a tough time in your life. I want to take you back to 2010.
Tara Newman: Yep.
Rebecca Ching: We're gonna go back in time. Our world, then, was still reeling, trying to regroup from the great recession. They say it was 2007 to 2009, and I know that your family was not left unscathed, and you and your husband had to file for bankruptcy in 2010.
Tara Newman: Yep.
Rebecca Ching: Can you tell us what was going through your head at the time?
Tara Newman: Yeah, so, you know, I kind of want to, first of all, set the stage for this and say --
Rebecca Ching: Please.
Tara Newman: -- that we started a business in 2005. It was a multiple six-figure manufacturing startup where my husband was a third of an owner, I was a third of an owner, my father was a third of an owner, and we were manufacturing plastic parts, rotationally molded plastic parts. I say this because I think we see a lot of startup stories today that just are not grounded in reality, and they're not truth. So if we think of some of the popular startup stories that we hear today, we think of WeWork, Adam Newman. I'm reading the book Hype right now, and that is all about -- it's called Hype: How Scammers, Grifters, and Con Artists are Taking Over the Internet -- and Why We're Following.
Rebecca Ching: Wow.
Tara Newman: In there, they talk about Billy MacFarland who was the Fyre Festival person, they do mention Donald Trump, and they also talk about Elon Musk, right? These are businesses that are surviving on capital -- the other one is Elizabeth Holmes from Theranos. These businesses are surviving on venture capital with trumped up P&Ls, and they're not actually making a profit.
They're way over-valued, and there's also no real consequences for when harm is done by these companies.
Rebecca Ching: Can I pause you real quick?
Tara Newman: Yeah.
Rebecca Ching: So for you to talk about this right now when I ask you about your bankruptcy, you're wanting to pull us back and maybe address some of, maybe, the stereotypes or the beliefs around bankruptcy. I'm hearing you start to differentiate from the grifters, folks who are just exploiting people versus your story, which I know you're gonna get to.
Tara Newman: Yeah, I do because, you know, when there's a lot of people who are doing business, whether it's in the online space or not in the online space but use the internet for stories and for inspiration and for things, and I just want to be clear that we're not always seeing the reality of what is happening, and the truth isn’t always there, right? There are a lot of reasons why people aren’t being fully truthful, and so, I want to be a very honest reflection of startup businesses, of small business ownership, and be very honest around what transpires in these situations and that they're not all rosy-colored, that they're not all unicorns and rainbows even though that's, often, what we make it seem like.
Rebecca Ching: Hmm. Gotcha. Have you read the book Cultish: The Language of Fanaticism?
Tara Newman: No, not yet.
Rebecca Ching: Add it to your list after this.
Tara Newman: I will.
Rebecca Ching: Because Amanda Montell, the way they describe it is she teaches the social science of cult influence and how cultish groups from Jonestown, Scientology, to Soul Cycle and social media gurus use language as the ultimate form of power, so I feel like that's a good -- I can't put it down, Tara, so I'm excited to hear your thoughts on that. Back to your story.
Tara Newman: And I'm just genuinely alarmed for what we're seeing in this post-truth space, right? And so, if there's one change that I can make, and that's me showing up and being honest and being open -- which is why I really love these questions.
So 2010 bankruptcy after 5 years of financially struggling to get this multiple six-figure investment startup off of the ground.
Rebecca Ching: Mm-hmm.
Tara Newman: Any kind of venture capital we've capitalized our self -- and that was largely part of the problem is that we were undercapitalized for what we were trying to do -- combined with a lot of naiveté, like, we had no business starting this type of a business. Even though we knew a lot, even though we were experts in what we each did and brought to the table, it was very clear that we were well over our heads from the very beginning with things like we didn’t realize we really had to sell. We were delivery people. We were great on the process and on the people and on the teambuilding and on the delivery part, knowing numbers and things like that, but that whole sales piece -- which is so funny, right? It's, like, that's how you have a business, which is why I'm so passionate about teaching sales today. We weren't fueling the business great with revenue, and we had one really large client, and they decided that making product in America was just too expensive, and so, they sent it to China.
When we do these things, when we make these decisions as businesses, we have a huge impact on our domestic economy. When we decide we want to buy cheap, when we decide we wanna really cut corners, when we decide that we wanna nickel and dime, this is impacting the livelihood of Americans and people in this country.
And so, we made the difficult decision five years in, not necessarily because we wanted to. We were forced at that time just as the banks -- remember the banks were -- the problem in 2008, 2009, it was an 18-month period where the banks were crumbling. They had made really bad decisions with lending, and they were in crisis, and that was about to collapse. They did get a bail out, but then they called in a lot of lines of credit, whether it be for businesses or even on homes.
So, simultaneously, we had our home line of credit pulled back which we were using to some extent (not a lot, but at times we had to use that) as well as they called in our business line of credit. The problem is they said we had 30 days to pay back our business line of credit or they were going to cease the collateral and the assets that we had put up, and I was confused because I said to my husband, "We don’t have anything. What are they taking?" The third business partner was my dad, and we had sent him to the bank to deal with the line of credit because this was his expertise in owning a business for as long as he had, and he put up collateral. So they weren’t going to take anything that I had; they were gonna take his commercial property if we didn’t pay that loan back in 30 days.
So that was quite problematic, and that really drove the decision to go bankrupt, because what happened was -- and when I talk about bankruptcy, I really want to acknowledge the privilege in being able to declare bankruptcy.
Rebecca Ching: Tell me more.
Tara Newman: Well, it costs money. You have to hire an attorney to declare bankruptcy, and there's filings and there's fees to actually go bankrupt, right?
There's also the access to the information that you can go bankrupt or how a bankrupt proceeding would work or even just having the mental and emotional support as you're going through something like that. I think there's a lot of privilege there. There's certainly a tremendous amount of privilege in my failure and in this story because what happened was my dad liquidated his assets, he paid the loan, and then he was very angry with us, rightfully so-ish, and he didn’t take responsibility for some of his part in the partnership, and so, we were very angry at him. Then, he demanded that we pay back in full with interest, and we couldn’t keep the business going. We couldn’t pay him back. We couldn’t pay back some of the credit card bills that we had on the business, so we, ultimately, decided to go bankrupt and we were able to liquidate some things and pay him back.
And so, that's really that bankrupt story and how that time in our economy affected us.
Rebecca Ching: On a very kind of day-to-day level, what would we see if we were watching you do life during this challenging season?
Tara Newman: That is such a great question because it really depends on what part of this -- it was five years.
Rebecca Ching: Oh gosh.
Tara Newman: So what happened was my husband started the business in January 2005. He started the business because his company that he was working for was moving, so he was out of a job. So we lost two-thirds of our salary right out of the gates.
Rebecca Ching: Wow.
Tara Newman: And then he didn’t collect a salary until October, and so, when we decided to start the business, I found out I was pregnant with my son.
Rebecca Ching: Oh.
Tara Newman: Okay, so that first year, we were Keeping Up with the Joneses. Like, nothing changed. Even though we lost two-thirds of our salary, this was our biggest mistake.
We had saved a whole boatload of cash to handle those initial peaks and valleys, but we didn’t change our lifestyle until a year to 18 months in. We're like oh, we got this. It was very hopeful like the money's just gonna start coming in. Look, we have this business plan. We wrote it out on paper so it's just gonna happen. It didn’t happen that quickly, and so, we burned through --
Rebecca Ching: I'm gonna ask you a quick question.
Tara Newman: Yeah.
Rebecca Ching: Was that really hope or was that more of just kind of a bypassing optimism. How would you word it?
Tara Newman: I would word it as naiveté.
Rebecca Ching: Ah, okay.
Tara Newman: Everybody says you need to have a business plan, so we did. We wrote numbers down. [Laughs]
Rebecca Ching: [Laughs]
Tara Newman: It was just gonna happen.
Rebecca Ching: Okay.
Tara Newman: Right? It was just naïve. That’s not actually how it works, unfortunately. I would love for it to be that way, that you write numbers on a paper and they just materialize. [Laughs]
Rebecca Ching: That would be a drastically different world.
Tara Newman: But, like, this is sort of part of that grifting conversation, right? That's not how this happens, and so, we were like yeah, it's gonna happen any day, like, any day. This is what we're supposed to do. We're supposed to work really, really hard, and then we get the payday. That's what entrepreneurship is. That's what we believed entrepreneurship was.
Rebecca Ching: Ah, you work hard, you put in your sweat equity, payday.
Tara Newman: And you get the payday. Right. And so, we ran through our savings. You would have seen -- and I talk about this a lot -- you would have seen an affluent young woman who was 30 years old getting out of her gold Toyota Highlander with her beautiful newborn son in her Ann Taylor suit, walking up to a home in a very affluent neighborhood that she could no longer afford. To the point that, you know, when the Highlander lease was up, I couldn’t even afford a new lease payment. They had made changes to the Highlander, and the leases had gone up, and we had to go and buy a car off of auction that was more of what we could afford to pay for on a monthly basis.
So, initially, you would have seen quite a façade. And then somewhere, probably, not too long after that, maybe, like, halfway in, maybe two years in, I just couldn’t take it anymore. I couldn’t take the pressure of upholding this thing that was not really true, and so, I started to just become very radically honest. We lost a lot of friends, and we lost a lot of our lifestyle for lots of different reasons, but I would say, when people would be like, "Let's go out to dinner," and I'd be like, "We can't afford that. The business isn't doing very well. Right now, it's very hard for us financially. We would love for you to come and have dinner here, and we can hang out and talk or play games or whatever." That didn’t last long. There weren’t a lot of people who wanted to do that. We turned down almost every birthday invitation because we couldn’t afford to be buying gifts. My son was born in October, and we would take his birthday presents, and we would let him open them, and then we would hide them and re-wrap them for Christmas.
Rebecca Ching: Mm.
Tara Newman: You know, so there wasn’t a lot of money for gifts. Any kind of wedding or anything like that was a no. It was an honest no. It was we cannot afford to attend your wedding. We wish you so much love and happiness, and under different circumstances, we would have loved to be there, but this is not an expense that we can afford right now.
Rebecca Ching: Tell me about the shift of living the façade to radical honesty. When did it click for you to not hustle to try and keep up the image versus just here's where we're at and letting the chips fall where they may?
Tara Newman: There was just an unsustainability about it.
Rebecca Ching: Mm-hmm.
Tara Newman: My body just couldn’t -- I don’t think it was actually a thinking thing.
Rebecca Ching: Ah.
Tara Newman: You know, it was like -- right after my son was born was so amazing, right? A newborn, but then there's postpartum depression. I had to go back to work fulltime in a corporate environment which was very oppressive.
Rebecca Ching: Oof.
Tara Newman: My boss used to wait for me with her clipboard at my office at 8:00 AM staring at the clock. Oh, it was terrible.
Rebecca Ching: Oh, my goodness.
Tara Newman: So when they get sick in daycare, you have an hour to pick them up, and I was going into her office one day to say, "Hey I'm sorry, my son's sick. I've gotta go," and she's like, "Oh, while you're here, let's just do your performance appraisal." It was terrible. It was untenable, and there were just so many components of my life that were untenable.
Rebecca Ching: So truth was it. Truth was it.
Tara Newman: It was just the easiest path.
Rebecca Ching: [Laughs] The only path, really.
Tara Newman: Yeah, it was just the easiest path.
Rebecca Ching: And so, you talked kind of -- there was the "Keep Up with the Jonses," radical truth, and then towards the end of those five years, what would we see?
Tara Newman: So you would see -- you know, it's complicated. So you would see somebody who was a lot wiser.
Rebecca Ching: Mm.
Tara Newman: You would see very different decisions being made. I joke about how my husband and I would be putting on deodorant in the morning, and we would remind each other just one swipe.
Rebecca Ching: Wow.
Tara Newman: So when we went bankrupt, we didn’t have any personal debt; it was business debt. It was we knew we couldn’t afford things, so you would see a woman who, almost every weekend, was selling things from her house. I sold the highchair right out from underneath my daughter. She actually never even sat in the highchair. She sat in a booster, so I was like okay, we have something for her to sit in to eat. It doesn’t have to be a highchair. The highchair's gonna get me a lot of money at a garage sale, and I can use that money to pay for food, for diapers, for a double stroller that I needed at the time because this was 2008.
My daughter was born. Nobody has a second shower for you. Nobody cares. [Laughs] We could barely afford the kid we had, and so, we were making some really hard decisions. You were seeing me really, probably, be incredibly discerning about what mattered in my life, what I had energetic capacity for and what I didn’t. You would see somebody who -- in this time period, this is where I found mindset work, specifically around money. So you would see somebody who was very diligent about managing her thoughts and how I thought about things. By the time we made the decision for bankruptcy, it was relief.
Rebecca Ching: Gotcha.
Tara Newman: But there was also a lot of gratitude, to be honest.
Rebecca Ching: Gratitude for or about…?
Tara Newman: Well, it was always so shocking to me that no matter how badly this experience went, I was grateful for it because I knew that I was going to learn and become somebody different from it.
Rebecca Ching: So, on that note, what surprises you about yourself when you look back on this time?
Tara Newman: I think what surprises me the most is that the range of emotions that I was able to hold at that time, I think, the gratitude that I felt for having the experience, despite how awful and horrendous it was, and I think that I'm here.
Rebecca Ching: Absolutely.
Tara Newman: It was a real 'I survived' moment. There was no thriving. I survived. [Laughs]
Rebecca Ching: [Laughs] Gotcha. You started touching on this, but how has the burden of this experience, how does that inspire your work with business owners today?
Tara Newman: Hmm, so a couple of things that I hear -- one of the main things that I actually hear from women who run small businesses, that I work with, you know, they're experts at what they do, but they're not experts at business or they're not experts at money, and they say, "Oh, I feel embarrassed that I'm running a business, but I don’t have a business degree," and I always say to them, "Well, I went to business school and I went bankrupt so you don’t have to."
Rebecca Ching: Oh. [Laughs]
Tara Newman: Because all of my lessons have come out of that experience in my life, and when I talk about money and when I talk about business and when I talk about the fear and anxiety and worry and stress that comes with business ownership, Gallop did a recent survey that 60% of women worry daily about their businesses. Sixty percent of women small business owners experience daily worry, and that is dramatically different than their male counterparts. I have a much different perspective on that because of the experience that I had, and if can be the calm in the entrepreneurial storm and be the example and the evidence that bad things happen, but there's a lot of good that can come of those things and that there's resilience there, then that's really how that comes forward and inspires what I do.
Rebecca Ching: You're right, being an entrepreneur and a business owner, it is a storm, and it's so funny because I even think I'll be the exception, and I work with people who think I'm gonna do it differently so I can avoid the storm. Like, you can't, you know? Owning a business finds the little cracks and the crevices where your insecurities or your vulnerabilities lie, and it pokes at it, [Laughs] and sometimes it blows it up.
There isn’t avoiding the storm. It just is inevitable, and even those who try to avoid it, they end up white knuckling it until they just crash.
Tara Newman: I have the luxury of being able to say, "What's the worst that can happen? I'll go bankrupt?"
Rebecca Ching: [Laughs]
Tara Newman: I did that. I'm here. My credit score ten years later is amazing.
Rebecca Ching: Yeah, you really have risen. So I want to talk about -- you touched on this a little bit because you were working full time in a corporate job, and you had started your own business working with business owners and leaders in around 2014, and you left your corporate job shortly after that. So walk us through -- again, you gave a flavor of a little bit of the emotional weight of this job, but walk us through your decision to leave the financial security of your corporate job, especially at this time, for your new online business.
Tara Newman: Yeah, it was interesting because you and I, I think, have a similar story in the sense that in April of 2014 I collapsed with pneumonia.
Rebecca Ching: Mm.
Tara Newman: And it went a little misdiagnosed. I actually diagnosed myself. I walked into the clinic, and I was like, "It's not what you think it is! It's pneumonia!" [Laughs] I feel like a horse is standing on my lung on my back.
Rebecca Ching: That's the worst.
Tara Newman: Yeah, it had really gone a little, probably, further than it should have because they thought it was a sinus infection. I actually thought I was gonna die. Two young kids, and my husband, he's a hard hustler whether he works for himself or whether he works for somebody else, and he always has worked in manufacturing, and it was one of these times of crazy manufacturing where he was working, like, a 36-hour shift, and I was home with two babies and pneumonia. I'm like you left me to die. I didn’t know if I was gonna make it through the night.
Rebecca Ching: Mm.
Tara Newman: And I went to see a nutritionist, a holistic doctor, a naturopath, after, and she was like, "Listen, you have N-stage adrenal fatigue. You are beyond exhausted. You need to make some serious life decisions and consider your career choices."
I was like oh, I don’t know what you're talking about. I don’t know how you leave the six-figure salary, plus the benefits I barely pay for, plus the match on my 401k, all the things they tell you that you need to have to be an upstanding member of society. [Laughs]
Rebecca Ching: Mm-hmm.
Tara Newman: I'm like I don’t know how you leave that behind. So that was April of 2014, and on August 20th, 2015 -- so, like, tomorrow would be my anniversary -- I walked out, I left, I quit. I left my job by that point.
Rebecca Ching: Six years ago.
Tara Newman: Mm-hmm. Yep.
Rebecca Ching: Wow.
Tara Newman: Yeah, so that really -- I, somehow, had to go from I don’t believe this is possible to it's happening, in my mind. It's not about physical proof, 'cause there have been times where I had less money and had felt more secure, and there were times where I had more money and felt less secure. At this time in my life, I had probably the most amount of money in the bank that I could possibly have, and I still didn’t feel like it was the right time. It was a mental journey to get from I don’t see how this is possible, I could never do something like this -- even though I really wanted to; it's been my dream -- to it's done, I'm walking out, I'm leaving, bye.
Rebecca Ching: Tell us about when you hit that point where you were like I'm done.
Tara Newman: So I had been blogging because, as an outcropping of this bankruptcy, there was healing that happened. It looked differently for me and my husband. So my husband went the path of Iron Man Triathlon.
Rebecca Ching: [Laughs] Yeah.
Tara Newman: [Laughs] A lot of running, swimming, biking, healing, and, like, having to have this big amazing goal that he achieved, I think, to make him feel and find his worthiness again after this failure, and, for me, it was writing. And so, through him doing the triathlon, I started a blog. And so, the reason why I started this blog was I never wanted anybody to feel alone in their daily struggles that nobody wants to talk about, that nobody will admit to, but that everybody's having.
Rebecca Ching: Like…?
Tara Newman: Like business failure.
Rebecca Ching: Yep.
Tara Newman: Like, you know, not making enough money, like not being able to pay your bills, like feeling like you're unworthy or postpartum depression or chronic illness or just being a mom, right? There's so much struggle that we don’t want to acknowledge, and so, this blog was just like I'm gonna put myself out there, and people are gonna read it, and they're just not gonna feel alone.
Rebecca Ching: I'm just connecting the thread of that shift of truth and carrying it on. You're like I'm gonna continue just to speak truth about my lived experience. Is that right?
Tara Newman: Yeah. Yeah, like, that was probably the greatest gift that came out of that time for me, was just to be able to say this is how it is for me.
Rebecca Ching: Mm, clarity.
Tara Newman: Yeah, and so, I had this blog, and then John, we spent 18 months preparing him to run Ironman Lake Placid, and that was July 28th, 2014, so we just passed that anniversary as well which was incredibly significant for both of us but in different ways, and I had fully bought into the Disney Princess story. He was my knight in shining armor on the white horse, and he was gonna come in and provide me the life that I wanted.
Somehow, he was gonna fulfill my goals and my dreams, and if I just focused enough of my attention and energy on him, for his career and getting what he wanted and him achieving these goals, that that was going to be how I achieved mine. It was going to pay itself forward back somehow, and we prepared for -- we changed our entire life, our entire lifestyle for 18 months so he could train. By the end, he was training 20 hours a week and working a full-time job, so you can imagine I was doing a lot of the parenting, [Laughs] a lot of the life-ing, and he was sleeping when he wasn’t doing those two things.
So he runs Ironman Lake Placid in the typical badass fashion that my husband approaches any athletic pursuit, and they have horrible mountain storms that day, and it's thundering, and it's lightning, and it's sheets of rain, and they were pulling people out of the water, but he was able to swim fast enough to get through the shortening of the swim. He was riding his bike through hypothermia.
Rebecca Ching: Oh, man. Wow.
Tara Newman: I mean, like, you have no idea. You have no idea. It was just an entire experience in itself. He gets through the finishing arches which were in the Olympic circle up in Lake Placid, and he's an Ironman. He's accomplished this amazing goal. The reaction to it was not what I thought it would be for myself. I thought that this was gonna be my moment too because we did this together. This was the promise that we were doing this together, and I was gonna have my moment. This was gonna be our moment, and he absolutely will always say that he couldn’t have done this without me, but I didn’t feel that. I didn’t feel the same level of accomplishment to a goal that he had, and I actually felt very small standing beside him like well, what am I doing with my life?
What's my big goal? What's my Ironman? I think I had worse post-race depression than he did.
Rebecca Ching: Wow.
Tara Newman: I remember the next day, sitting on the floor of my hotel room, talking to a friend of mine who's also a Triathlete, and I said to him, "I don’t know. I think John needs to run another race or something because I'm feeling really let down." Then, I remember a week later calling him and saying, "No, I'm gonna start a business. That's gonna be my Ironman."
Rebecca Ching: Ah!
Tara Newman: Starting a business is gonna be my Ironman. That was August, and December I sent out my first email saying, "Hey, I'm doing this thing! Who wants to buy it," [Laughs] to my very small email list that was associated with my blog. By the time I received my bonus check from work in January, my monthly revenue was larger than my bonus check.
Rebecca Ching: No way. Wow.
Tara Newman: So I was like oh. I'm like okay, I'm gonna be leaving, and so, I started having conversations with my boss (which was a different boss than the one that I was previously talking about), and they paid me a ton more money. I got, probably, one of the largest raises I had ever received, and it just wasn’t gonna keep me. Then, in May, I had said to my husband, "It's coming. I'm leaving. I'm gonna pull the plug on this, so we need to figure out, financially -- we better start socking away more money than we even had been," and we went on this whole two-month 'how much can we save' because I, then, went on a leave of absence. I had purposely gone on a leave of absence so I could act as if and see if this was really what I wanted to do.
Rebecca Ching: Oh, that's interesting.
Tara Newman: Yeah, and then when I returned, I gave my notice and I was out. I was like, "Yeah, this is done. I'm done."
Rebecca Ching: What would have been the stakes if you chose to stay in that job, for you?
Tara Newman: I don’t want to sound over-dramatic, but, honestly --
Rebecca Ching: [Laughs]
Tara Newman: -- I would have lost everything. I would have lost myself.
Rebecca Ching: Oof.
Tara Newman: I would have lost my dream. I would have lost the opportunity to live an unconventional life. I would have lost the lessons that come with self-reliance. My kids were -- I always knew that the easiest time to be a working mom was when they were little, when they were toddlers. Stick them in a daycare. They just want to play all day. They would never know, but I knew, come their teen years --
Rebecca Ching: Yep.
Tara Newman: I remember my teen years. I wanted to be there for them, because that was, like, the opposite of what my mom did.
Rebecca Ching: You got it.
Tara Newman: She went back to work during our teen years, and that did not go well. For me, that did not go well. So my daughter was in first grade when I left my corporate job, and my son was in fourth grade when I left my corporate job, and now they're 12 and 15. For the last seven years of me having this business, the last six years of me working from home, they have watched me and they have learned things that they would have never learned before. They listen, and they're engaged, and it's such a different family dynamic. There's so much richness that as I develop myself as a person in my business, they develop along with me in a really interesting and unique and very fulfilling way. I think that I would have traded -- when we start our businesses, we want financial independence and we want personal freedom -- financial freedom and personal freedom.
You think that a job provides financial security, but it doesn’t.
Rebecca Ching: What does?
Tara Newman: Knowing your numbers.
Rebecca Ching: Tell me more.
Tara Newman: Understanding how much money you need to sustain your lifestyle and understanding how you can bring that in, whether it's from a job or not. But, I mean, there's nothing saying that your job can't lay you off or that that business couldn’t go out of business, but for me, I know how much I need to make, I know the lifestyle I want to have, I'm completely in control of going out and making that money, and I have the line of sight of when things are going south or when things are going north, and I am making those decisions. I have agency, and I am in control of that.
Rebecca Ching: Can I ask you a question because this is, maybe, more from me and my evolution of numbers. Talk about, briefly, the difference between your job, your salary, your money coming in --
Tara Newman: [Laughs]
Rebecca Ching: -- and knowing your numbers, because I conflated the two --
Tara Newman: Do did I.
Rebecca Ching: -- for so long. Can you just briefly unpack that?
Tara Newman: This was a year one in business lesson for me because I kept not wanting to leave the, quote, unquote, (I'm doing air quotes) "financial security" of my job until I could directly replace my salary. I didn’t understand that my revenue was not going to equal my salary that I was making in my corporate job. And so, at that point, I was just like well, this is good enough, and that's when I left. When I was like I've saved enough money, this is good enough, I had a verbal agreement with my husband that he was gonna provide some air cover for me while I went and got this thing started up. We had a one-year plan, and we had a two-year plan.
Year one plan, I took everything that I made in that business and I reinvested it. Yes, I understand privilege, having a husband who also brings in an income.
Rebecca Ching: Yeah.
Tara Newman: But, really, the first whole year of my business I was also working in my corporate role, so I didn’t need the money. It was a side hustle for nine months, so anything that was made went right back into the business as an investment, and then, year two, I was not going to take a paycheck. We were gonna be a one-income household, and then by year three, there was an amount of money that I needed to start bringing into the house, and I could only invest what I earned. I couldn’t take personal income and make an investment in the business. Those were our rules.
What you're talking about is that when you bring in, in revenue, is not your salary. So if you are making -- and I’m a Profit First certified professional so I’m gonna be giving Profit First related numbers because it's the easiest way, it’s the easiest system to understand cash in a business and revenue in a business. If you bring in one hundred thousand dollars in revenue, as per Profit First, 50% of that is what you would pay yourself. So you would be paying yourself fifty thousand dollars on a hundred thousand dollars in revenue. Fifteen percent would go to pay taxes, because you have to pay taxes now out of this money that was being taken out of your paycheck prior. Then, you have business expenses. You have to run your business. You want to have, maybe, some part time admin support or you want to invest in a personal development program or you want to have some systems or software or apps or you have a computer that you need to buy. Those are expenses on your business, and that hundred thousand dollars as well.
So it’s not a direct one for one. Is that what you were talking about?
Rebecca Ching: Yeah, ‘cause, honestly -- I don't know if I’ve shared this before, but I came from a family where bankruptcy was filed, but under very different circumstances. My father got into an accident. There were insurance issues, and it really just leveled our family. Then, that was the domino effect, and so, I was young watching that, but I never understood about spending. It was almost just like I never saw budgets. It was just like we’ll figure it out, you know?
Tara Newman: Uh-huh.
Rebecca Ching: And so, just having that in my background, and then seeing other people who had businesses where maybe they were taken advantage of or exploited and trusted people. I kind of wanted to do everything, but I never got my brain around the difference between what I was bringing in and then what I needed to do with those numbers. It really took me a handful of years to understand that and recognize all the different burdens that we carry around those beliefs about ourselves having money or not having money, what to do with it.
So it felt like it stirred it all up til it was a bit of my own inner-hurricane and I’d go, “Ahh!” and I’d just have my accountant tell me what to do and where to send things. But, you know, things really shifted for my confidence and clarity because then I was just working, and I just kept working and working and I didn't have boundaries around that because one, I loved what I did, but I also kind of just felt like I didn't have a sense of when I could take a break either. So knowing your numbers is a powerful boundary to me on, you know, how I can care for the things that matter most like my well-being, my family, and be generous with others too.
Tara Newman: Yeah.
Rebecca Ching: So I appreciate you unpacking that.
Tara Newman: Yeah, I think women make a mistake -- and so, I just also want to say that I didn't start managing my own money until I started my business when I was 39 years old. So from the time I first started working -- my husband and I have been together for 26 years, and we’ve been married for 21 years which is a very long period of time, and we moved in together a year before we got married, and that’s when I also happened to graduate college and get my first job and all those things.
Right from that very moment, I just handed him my paycheck. That’s what I had seen being done in my house. That’s what I thought you did, and I really have to credit my husband to me gaining a lot of financial literacy. I understood how money worked in business because I did that in my corporate job, but there was a detachment and a separation with it because it wasn't my money, somebody else managed it, I didn't have direct responsibilities for it. I understood it but not in the same way.
When I started my business, I didn't know what in the world to do. I looked at my husband, and I was like can you do my books? After the first year, I said okay, well, I don't want you doing my books anymore. This isn't great. We have a different perspective. I’m gonna hire an accountant or whatever. He’s like, “No, you're gonna do them yourself.” He’s like, “You're not gonna hire this out until you can sit down with your money every week, look at it, navigate it, understand it before you hand it off.” I was so mad.
Rebecca Ching: [Laughs]
Tara Newman: I just wanted to advocate that responsibility.
Rebecca Ching: It feels big. There’s something that can be so overwhelming about numbers, but once you understand them, they're not the boss of you.
Tara Newman: No, and so, what I see women doing is holding off on knowing their numbers and understanding that until they’ve done enough mindset work or have healed enough money stories. I, actually, think it should be the opposite or in tandem. I think, if you know the math, it actually just knocks out some of the concerns that you’re spinning on, and then you can actually more easily get to the root of some of those stories and some of those beliefs that you have that you want to re-evaluate.
Rebecca Ching: Yeah, it’s not about pushing yourself to have some false number that is an optic for the world. It’s, really, figuring out what works for you, how little or big that is. I always ask my clients, and they really spin out, I’m like, “What’s your ‘enough?’” They’re like, “That’s a limiting belief!” I’m like, “No, it’s not. It’s a boundary.” [Laughs] What’s your ‘enough’ that fuels the life that you want to live, that you feel called to live. Not the Keeping Up with the Jonses and the hustling, but what’s your ‘enough’ looking at time, looking at, for us, it’s travel, and those types of things. What’s the ‘enough’ around that? It’s really flipping the script of more is more and more is better, and so, that’s exhausting people.
Tara Newman: Yes. So I think that most women are burning out because they don't know their numbers, and if they saw that they had enough with a lot less work --
Rebecca Ching: For sure. Yes.
Tara Newman: So Brené Brown says that the opposite of scarcity is not abundance, it’s enough.
Rebecca Ching: You got it! Game changer for me.
Tara Newman: I fought her on this for a really long time. I really did.
Rebecca Ching: [Laughs] You did?
Tara Newman: I did. I mentally fought her on this for a while, until I just had a deeper understanding, through my Profit First training, and what happens when you have enough is your nervous system calms down.
Rebecca Ching: You got it.
Tara Newman: It regulates, and then you can actually step into more than enough, and so, my goal is for women to always have more than enough, but we can’t have more than enough until we have enough.
Rebecca Ching: And we have to know that we are enough.
Tara Newman: Yes.
Rebecca Ching: And that what we make isn’t connected to that.
Tara Newman: They’re not connected.
Rebecca Ching: That’s the work. Phew, that’s the work.
Tara Newman: Yeah.
Rebecca Ching: So I want to shift, briefly, just to talk about you and your husband. You both still are business owners and entrepreneurs. I’d like for you to talk, briefly, about how you navigate work-life together and how maybe it’s different from conventional wisdom often shared when both partners are running their own businesses.
Tara Newman: Yeah. [Laughs] He and I have actually had this conversation so many times because I know it’s really big in the online space where women are like, “I retired my husband.” I was like that would certainly make things easier, where if he was home taking care of things, but that’s not what he wants. That’s not what he wants to do. He has a business. He loves running his business. He builds things, and he likes that. Nor do I want to be solely responsible for all the income coming into the family. I really like, and he really likes, having a financial partner, and so, I think that our relationships can be -- I don’t think it’s more complicated or challenging than any other relationship, to be honest. Sometimes I’m like I don't know. This might be more complicated, but I really don't think so. We definitely talk about business a lot. I’ve started recording our conversations at breakfast and at dinner ‘cause they’re really good. We’ve got, like, a two-person mastermind going on here, like, all the time.
Rebecca Ching: [Laughs]
Tara Newman: We solve some really big problems over, like, a barbeque steak, ‘cause he runs a manufacturing business, so in all fairness, he does have some big challenges, especially right now. As he was leaving -- he has a habit of springing things on me at 6:30 in the morning when we sit down for a cup of coffee, and I’m like --
Rebecca Ching: What’s up with that?
Tara Newman: -- not the time, John. Not the time. This is not the time.
Rebecca Ching: [Laughs]
Tara Newman: This is, like, Tara’s trying to get brains in her head and not the time.
Rebecca Ching: [Laughs]
Tara Newman: [Laughs] It’s always anxiety-fueled stuff, so I’m like okay.
Rebecca Ching: I think that’s more me. I’m probably more like your husband to my husband. He’s like, “I haven't had my coffee yet, Rebecca,” and I’m like, “Shoot! I’ve got big things to say!” He’s like, “I need my coffee first.” [Laughs]
Tara Newman: So he says to me this morning, he goes, “I thought COVID was gonna be bad, and I thought COVID was gonna be the death of my business, but this post-COVID, supply chain issues and labor shortages, it’s really crushing businesses that are dealing with physical products and inventory and labor and there’s a lot of businesses. We forget, in a service-based business, that we don't have these challenges. So we’re solving some really big problems for him sometimes. I think that the secret to our success is that we just like each other, and we have some things in common, and we really differ in opinion. Over the last year, we’ve had to really learn how to agree to disagree or respectfully disagree or, you know, just be okay not being the same person. [Laughs]
Rebecca Ching: Yeah, ‘cause you are very different. You are different people, but we all are different, and I think -- we think with our partner (especially if we’re really different) it’s bad. [Laughs]
Tara Newman: Humor is really big for us, especially me.
Rebecca Ching: Nice.
Tara Newman: It’s how I deal with my trauma. If you ask my kids if my husband was funny they’d be like, “No.” He’s so stiff. He’s so intense, my husband, and he could be dry and sometimes a little bit of dad humor-ish, but I really actually realized that in order to live with me, he’s a really funny guy. [Laughs]
Rebecca Ching: Nice, nice.
Tara Newman: I said to him the other day, “You know, you really do have a good sense of humor to put up with me.”
Rebecca Ching: Well, thanks for sharing that. I think it’s important to touch on and give a window into that. So I want to talk about something that you and I have had, actually, side conversation about before. You’ve said and written something to the effect of, “The online world makes you stupid,” and I don't like that word stupid.
Tara Newman: Me neither.
Rebecca Ching: It’s not allowed in our house, but in the sense that you’re referencing people with advanced credentials or years of professional experience or deep skills all of a sudden feel like they don't have any of those skills when they enter the online space. So I’d love for you to kind of share your birdseye view of this phenomenon that you’ve been seeing for years and how it impacted you when you first started your business.
Tara Newman: Yeah, all right, so I say it makes us dumb, but I’ll reframe that and say it gives us amnesia.
Rebecca Ching: Ah, I like that better, so much better.
Tara Newman: Okay, like, we forget how powerful we are. We forget that we are experts. We forget that we do know something, and for the women that I work with, they usually have a very deep professional background or they’ve even run businesses before that have been brick and mortar, and now they’re flocking to the internet to see how they can leverage technology. So this is what they want to do. They want to leverage technology to increase their income and use their time better, is what I think is happening. Then there’s this online thing. Then, they get sucked into the matrix.
Rebecca Ching: What’s the matrix? How do you define the matrix?
Tara Newman: Whatever app of your choosing is the matrix, because once you’re in, you can't get out, and the algorithm is only sending you the things that you're clicking on, so you're just reinforcing whatever your beliefs and thoughts are while you’re scrambling your brains with eight-second reels because apparently we have an attention span that is shorter than a guppy or a goldfish, and this is somehow acceptable these days. It’s not acceptable to me. Where is our moral compass? This is my nightmare fuel. Right? So good intentions -- how do I use technology, how do I leverage technology so that I can have a greater reach, make more money, help more people, and do it in a way that leverages my time?
Sucked into the matrix -- and then we start seeing all these things that are happening and we’re like oh, well, I don't know how to do that. I don't know that technology. I need to be this way. This person is having success with -- it must be whatever it is that they’re doing, and now we’re copying and intentionally trying to copy people’s strategies and business models and process and ways of doing things.
What they’re really doing is copying their personality because making money online, in the way that most people are seeing it -- when I say making money, that’s really questionable -- a lot of it can be personality-driven, and so we’re seeing people try to copy people’s personalities, and we forget that we actually know what we’re doing. We have expertise that works. We have helped people. We’ve provided solutions, whether it be in a corporate job or in our own businesses that maybe weren’t online, and it happened to me. I was like, “Oh, I don't know anything. I’m a newbie. I’m a newbie,” and I wasn't a newbie, but I thought I was a newbie. If you have experience and expertise and you’ve either worked in corporate or academia or small business or whatever it is, but you’ve maybe not worked ro yourself or you have worked for yourself in a brick and mortar, you are not a newbie. You’re not starting over.
Rebecca Ching: So what do you think contributes to this level of scarcity and doubt, especially for established leaders like yourself and those that you lead on a regular basis?
Tara Newman: So I work with people who have online businesses, and I work with people who don’t have online businesses, and there’s a big difference between the two because the people who don't have online businesses usually aren’t even using the internet.
They don't have a functioning website, and they don't have social media for their business, and yes, you can actually make money without a website and without social media. It is possible.
Rebecca Ching: It sure is.
Tara Newman: And it’s actually quite dreamy, in my opinion. [Laughs] So they're not seeing what their competition is doing.
Rebecca Ching: Plus, they’re not getting into the comparison.
Tara Newman: They don't know what everybody else is doing, and they're not buying the big lie because they don't know it exists.
Rebecca Ching: The big lie is you’re a newbie?
Tara Newman: No, whatever big lie the internet’s peddling that day.
Rebecca Ching: Got it.
Tara Newman: That you have to be a seven-figure business owner to be successful or that you can make money in your sleep or --
Rebecca Ching: Enough, that you’re enough.
Tara Newman: -- or, you know, that passive income is the answer to burnout or any of those things. They're all just a big lie.
Rebecca Ching: Well, and I would also add to that, too, what it means -- that successful means you have to look a certain way --
Tara Newman: Very much, yep.
Rebecca Ching: -- and you have to act a certain way, and your tone and your language and your clothing and there’s archetypes and it gets -- yeah, there are some pretty insidious aspects to it too that are very, very dark, I think.
Tara Newman: I one hundred percent agree. I have definitely worked with my fair share of either business coaches or have been in certain communities that have done more to erode my confidence and have taken me longer to get over and have caused more harm to my business in that respect than anything else. Our confidence and our energy are key.
Rebecca Ching: Hmm, so how do you navigate the scarcity and doubt when it comes up for you today?
Tara Newman: Well, I try and stay away from things that create it, so I’m actually not online very much, and I think the other way, first of all, is acknowledging that it exists.
Rebecca Ching: Mm, yeah, for sure.
Tara Newman: Right? I think that we have an expectation, again, perpetrated in the online space, that you’re only allowed to have an abundance mindset and you should never ever feel scarcity, and I think scarcity is a part of the human condition.
Rebecca Ching: Ugh.
Tara Newman: The expectation is, is that you will feel scarcity, and that’s okay.
Rebecca Ching: Literally.
Tara Newman: So, for me, it’s first, the expectation that I will feel this way and that it’s not a bad thing. It just is what it is. It’s a part of being human. It makes me real.
Rebecca Ching: We don't have to lead from it.
Tara Newman: It makes me real.
Rebecca Ching: We don't have to lead from it, though.
Tara Newman: Right? I acknowledge that it exists, and I speak compassionately to myself when it comes up, and that I speak to the part of myself that is feeling scarcity so we can try and bring it down a bit, right?
Rebecca Ching: Get some space, yeah.
Tara Newman: Yeah, bring the overwhelm down a bit., and I don't really try and analyze it, to be honest, and I’m a pretty analytical sort, and I probably have done a lot of trying to analyze it in the past, but I really don't. I’m just like, “Hey, I feel that you're feeling scarcity. this is real. it’s okay that you're feeling this way. it’s normal, and how can we work together to help you feel differently, better, less overwhelmed by it.” For me, it’s a lot of stepping away. It’s a lot of regulating my nervous system. The key to making money is nervous system regulation.
Rebecca Ching: The key to a lot.
Tara Newman: Yeah.
Rebecca Ching: Yeah, it’s being able to regulate. You know, and befriending our fears, befriending discomfort versus trying to bypass it, exile it, destroy it, kill it. It’s a game changer, isn't it?
Tara Newman: Huge, huge.
Rebecca Ching: Mm-hmm. I appreciate that. All right, I have one final question I want to ask. Earlier this year, you received a formal diagnosis for ADHD.
Now, I know you had expected this for some time. What led you to getting a formal diagnosis?
Tara Newman: Watching my son get diagnosed, and not just diagnosed, because he’s been diagnosed for three, four years. I knew that when he first got diagnosed that that was also me. Like, he’s living my life. [Laughs] Yeah, in each stage I’m like oh, yep. I totally see myself. Yes, I see myself there, and this last year with COVID and remote school was just so hard for him, and so, in the very beginning of the year, I actually had him re-evaluated to make sure we didn't miss something and, at that time, we decided he was gonna go on medication. When I saw that it wasn't just about him focusing better, that it changed his mood and his affect and his relationship with others and his relationship with himself, and that we didn't realize that he had anxiety and that he was calm -- his body was calmer.
Rebecca Ching: Wow.
Tara Newman: I was like I think I need that. [Laughs] I think it’s time to maybe look at this in a different perspective because whatever he’s got going on right now, I want some of that. That would be really good. Because, likewise, for him, this past year for me with COVID and not knowing I had ADHD -- knowing but not really understanding. I didn't really understand it. I didn't do the depth of research and understanding about it that I did this year, so I didn't really understand why things were so difficult for me, but the lack of continuity, all the different changes in regulations and rules and how you can enter a grocery store or not enter a grocery store really kind of taxed whatever coping mechanisms I had that were not pharmaceutical-related.
So I was already naturally doing everything that you would do to manage those symptoms naturally, and it wasn't working anymore like the way it had been.
Rebecca Ching: What impact did this diagnosis have on how you view yourself?
Tara Newman: I’m still working on that. However, I was like oh, everything everyone has ever told me was wrong with me was actually related to ADHD.
Rebecca Ching: Mm, dang. That makes my heart hurt. We see --
Tara Newman: Every teacher, my parent, every employer, friends, family -- whatever. Whatever anybody had a complaint for a piece of feedback or criticism about me, I can directly tie it to it being a symptom of ADHD.
Rebecca Ching: What’s come up as you’ve processed a lifetime of navigating a brain that worked differently than the world said how you should function?
Tara Newman: It’s really liberating for me because I think I was just ready to let go of that stuff anyway, and this was just a little extra level of permission to be truly who I am. I’m also just understanding myself a little better. I can be very verbally impulsive, and at times it can be inappropriate or funny, depending on how you look at it. [Laughs]
Rebecca Ching: Fair. [Laughs]
Tara Newman: So my mom used to yell at me, as a kid, “Filter!” That has been a huge story and a huge process of working through, that every time I go to open my mouth I hear her yelling, “Filter!” and I get very tongue-tied, and it feels like word salad. My words don't want to come out, and they get stuck, and it’s really uncomfortable, physically, to have my brain working in a certain way, and then not being able to verbalize it.
There’s always stuff that comes up around my throat chakra and all that stuff. That’s probably been one of the biggest areas that I’ve been looking at around boundaries. When do I want to filter and when do I not want to filter? When is filtering okay versus when is filtering not okay for me, and I always want to -- words matter, and so, I do take my words very seriously. As somebody with a podcast and with a platform, not a very large one, but a platform of any size, I do feel responsible for the words that I share. At the same time, it’s okay for me to be me. That’s been a real dance for me right now.
Rebecca Ching: Mm, I think that’s powerful. It’s okay to be me, and then setting those boundaries around I’m not gonna be around people or allow other people’s discomfort or expectations to take that away.
Tara Newman: Yeah.
Rebecca Ching: So here’s what’s okay and here’s what’s not okay. Yeah, this has helped you come into more of you knowing it’s okay to be you and discovering what that is. That’s powerful. Ah, Tara, this was such a great conversation! We covered a lot of territory today.
Tara Newman: We did.
Rebecca Ching: Where can people find you if they want to connect with you and your work?
Tara Newman: Sure, three places. I have a podcast, The Bold Money Revolution. I do hangout on Instagram, so I’m @thetaranewman and if you are someone who is like you know what, Rebecca and Tara really inspired me to know my numbers and to get a bit of a handle on that so maybe my system doesn’t have to work as hard, I don't have to be as overwhelmed, maybe I’ll do some math first and then see what plays out, I have what I call a revenue goal calculator that helps you get familiar with your numbers, and you can get that at theboldleadershiprevolution.com/revenue.
Rebecca Ching: We’ll make sure to have links to all of that in our show notes. Tara, thank you so much for your time today. Thank you for your leadership and for your heart and for sharing your story. Really grateful for you.
Tara Newman: Thanks for having me on, Rebecca.
Rebecca Ching: It takes a lot of work to figure out how to build a life and a body of work that feels like an honest reflection of who you are without the filters and the highlight reels. So many of us show up in work and life following the rules and the “shoulds” of what we’ve been taught. We cultivate an image for fear of losing reputation and belonging. The fear of being seen, making a mistake, or being less than perfect can override the need to get honest about the state of our lives. Instead of staying in denial and crashing and burning, Tara stopped trying to keep up appearances and got radically honest with herself and those in her community. Her honesty had its losses, for sure, but there were so many gains. Tara has modeled for us how the fruits of that honesty led to her rising from bankruptcy and questioning her career path, to building a business and a life that is sustainable and impactful.
What is unsustainable or off in your life right now? Where are you sacrificing your well-being in pursuit of keeping up appearances? What support do you need to help you dig deep and practice more radical honesty? We clench our jaws and tighten our fists, maintaining the status quo until our bodies and bank accounts can no longer sustain what is not working. Make the time now, before the next crisis, to get radically honest with yourself about your life and work so you can move closer to living a life that reflects you and reclaims your worthiness and safety from the collective other.
Leading is hard. Leading is also often controversial as you navigate staying aligned to your values, your mission, your boundaries. Navigating the inevitable controversy can challenge your confidence, clarity, and calm. You don’t mind making the hard decisions, but sometimes the stakes seem higher and can bring up echoes of old doubts and insecurities during times when you need to feel rock solid on your plan and action.
Finding a coach who gets the nuances of your business and leading in our complex and polarized world can help you identify the blocks that keep you playing at safe and small. Leading today is not a fancy title or fluffy bragging rights, it is brave and bold work to stay the course when the future is so unknown and the doubts and pains from the past keep showing up to shake things up. Internal emotional practices and systemic strategies are needed to keep the protector of cynicism at bay and foster a hope that is actionable and aligned. When the stakes are high and you don't want to lose focus, when you want to navigate inevitable conflict between your ears and with those you lead, when time is of the essence and you want to make hard decisions with confidence and clarity, then Unburdened Leader coaching is for you, where you deepen the capacity to tolerate the vulnerability of change, innovation, and doing things differently than the status quo.
To start your Unburdened Leader coaching process with me go to www.rebeccaching.com and book a free connection call. I cannot wait to hear from you!
Thank you so much for joining this episode of The Unburdened Leader. You can find this episode, show notes, ways to sign up for the weekly Unburdened Leader email and other free resources along with ways to work with me at www.rebeccaching.com.