T Time: Spiritual conversations For, With and About Women.

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Episode Summary

Are you a part of the 40% of women who make up the new entrepreneurs in the United States? Whether you were a part of the great resignation or not, women have eagerly sought out ways to work for themselves and have become more successful in their trade than ever. Check out today's T Time to learn some great tools to be successful as your own boss.

Episode Notes

Are you a part of the 40% of women who make up the new entrepreneurs in the United States? Whether you were a part of the great resignation or not, women have eagerly sought out ways to work for themselves and have become more successful in their trade than ever. Check out today's T Time to learn some great tools to be successful as your own boss. 

00:23 Twanna introduces guest speaker, Melissa Meyer. 

1:15 Twanna asks Melissa to share her journey of entrepreneurship.  

2:08 Melissa shared that coming back from maternity leave her boss did not let her work from home and that was not going to work for her family.  

3:01 When working for different office jobs, "You tend to work with a lot of different personality types," Melissa said. That experience has helped her gain an understanding of different opinions and perspectives

4:07 Being an entrepreneur can be lonely and difficult. Twanna asks Melissa who has influenced her during her entrepreneurship journey. 

5:02 Melissa shares that her father taught her to have the grit and tenacity to not give up even when giving up is an option. 

6:42 2021 has been known for The Great Resignation and Melissa mentions that since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been an increase in freelance people in the workforce. 

7:27 Twanna asks Melissa how faith has played a role in her entrepreneurship.

8:04 Melissa shares about the impact of waiting on God from the beginning of her entrepreneurial experience. 

10:01 Melissa shares the many challenges entrepreneurs face. 

12:28 Having a moment where you can do a time audit is crucial for Melissa to feel like she has work and home-life balance. 

17:30  Melissa gives encouragement to women who may be contemplating starting or growing their own business. 

20:50 Melissa closes in prayer. 

Episode Transcription

Twanna Henderson: Welcome to T Time: Spiritual Conversations For, With and About Women. I'm your host, Twanna Henderson and I want to remind you to take a moment and like this podcast and share it with your friends and other women in your life. Well, I'm excited about today's guests. Our guest for today is freelance writer Melissa Meyer. Melissa writes copy for entrepreneurs, small businesses and Christian ministries. Melissa lives in Wisconsin with her husband, her daughter, her son and her cat Kirby and her business Bets and Ben Creative is named after her two children. Melissa has an interesting story about how she transitioned from working in the corporate world after 20 years to venture into entrepreneurship. Melissa, welcome to T Time.

Melissa Meyer: Thank you so much. It's great to be on your podcast.

Twanna Henderson: Well, it's good to have you. You know, recently, I read an article that stated that women make up 40% of new entrepreneurs in the United States. Tell us how your venture into entrepreneurship began?

Melissa Meyer: Sure. Well, I worked in the corporate world for about 20 years. I did not get married until later in life. And so I was 37 when I got married. And I did not become a mother until I was 39. And so I worked while when my daughter was born. And my husband traveled a lot. So I was doing a lot of solo parenting. And when my son was born, we didn't have a daycare plan for him. So my boss at the time was letting me work from home from my office job. And then when my husband was home I would go into the office. And right before I went on maternity leave, I got a new boss. And I came back from maternity leave. And he said, you can't work from home. And that didn't work for our family. So we actually made it work for a few months. And then I left full time office work, and became a stay at home mom at the age of 43. And so when I left, I knew that eventually I would want to start my own business because I have a degree in English. I've always loved writing, it's been a big part of my life. And so I planned on being a freelance writer eventually, and then just had to kind of wait until I got the green light from God on that.

Twanna Henderson: Now, I know you shared with me that you worked in various office jobs for 20 years, how did that experience in those positions, shape your freelance business?

Melissa Meyer: When you work in freelance, just like a lot of other jobs, you tend to work on a lot of different personality types. And so, working 20 years in office settings, I worked with a lot of different personality types and people in different stages of their life. And so I really observe people a lot. And it gave me a good I guess, I would say, perspective on other people's opinions and perspectives. And so I have a little bit of a little bit of an ability to put myself in other people's shoes and see things from their view. And that comes in really handy when you're freelancing.

Twanna Henderson: You know, that whole entrepreneur space is such a, it can be a very hard space, particularly if you don't have anybody to kind of walk with you through that. Has there been anybody who's been an influence on you doing your entrepreneurialship journey?

Melissa Meyer: Yeah, well, even though it was it looks different than my freelance business, my dad was an entrepreneur. Basically, he was very young, and came into an opportunity to take over a business with a business partner, and it was in a small town. It was a farm machinery implement, so they would sell and fix farm machinery. And so I watched as I grew up, my dad, put in the long hours as the owner, deal with conflict, have kind of that grit and that tenacity that you need to not give up when you own a business because you can give up, because if you walk away, it goes away. Yeah, you can just if you don't like your job, you can just say, I'm out, I quit. You have to really dig in sometimes and stick with it. So that was a really good example to me for entrepreneurship. And then I've joined some Facebook communities of other women, that are entrepreneurs, some Christians, some non Christian, and I've had some really good influence through that. With people that I've met, kind of had a network come around me, because being an entrepreneur and freelancing, you're on your own, you're sitting in an office or whatever, you're, you don't have a lot of support, personally face to face. So it can feel kind of lonely sometimes. But having that support of other people that get it, what you're going through is huge.

Twanna Henderson: Yeah. Now, did you how did that translate, you know, just over the past year and a half with COVID? I mean, you know, I mean, you mentioned about kind of it sort of being isolated, but, you know, that made it even more so I think for, you know, all of us. So, did you see a difference with it over the past, you know, you know, almost two years now.

Melissa Meyer: Um, the biggest difference I have seen is that there are a lot more freelance people in the freelance space right now. I know during COVID, they kind of called it the great resignation. And there have been a lot of women who had a lot going on with a job, and kids at home with school, and all those things that COVID brought, that have left the workforce to start their own business. So there are a lot of groups that I'm in, that the numbers have really grown. And it really is neat to see, especially women come together, support each other, encourage each other and say, this is hard. But you can do it. As an entrepreneur.

Twanna Henderson: Yeah, I think that's really good. And, and then, of course, the faith, you know, our faith plays a part in every aspect of our lives. How would you say that your faith has played a role in your entrepreneurship?

Melissa Meyer: Well, I had to wait to start

Twanna Henderson: Waiting is a dirty word.

Melissa Meyer: And I've done a lot of it in my life. But just waiting on God's timing, his plan, I was actually kind of ready to jump in both feet, as soon as I left my full time job to be like, I'm gonna start a business. And my husband was like, okay, let's just get our feet under us with this new normal, this change in our family. And so I did wait and prayed on it for a long time. And, you know, I kind of tripping over my words. I just want to glorify God with my business. Yeah, you know, the Bible says, and all you do, and so work is a big part of that. So there are opportunities that might come to write for someone that maybe doesn't align with my faith values. I'm not saying that every single person has to have the same faith as me or be just like me. But there are businesses that you just have to kind of put a stake in the ground and say, I am not going to work with that kind of business, because it doesn't align with my faith and my values. And I don't think that that's God's plan for my business.

Twanna Henderson: Yeah, yeah. Yeah. And I agree, and I think, you know, too often, we are either too timid to kind of draw that sand that line in the sand or, you know, we, you know, want people to, you know, like us or whatever, but I think we do have to be very clear about, you know, what we, you know, what we stand for what we will allow and what, you know, what will glorify the Lord. I know, there's got to be challenges. Being an entrepreneur, can you share some of that just talk about some of the challenges. I mean, I know you mentioned, you know, it could be, you know, kind of a sense of isolation but, you know, a lot of women are trying to, you know, go this route and, you know, just finding it very difficult. What are some of the challenges that you've experienced?

Melissa Meyer: Making decisions in my business, I have to take a lot of things to prayer to the Lord in prayer, because it's just on you, and you get to run your business the way you want to run your business. But a lot of times, there's a lot of self doubt of, is this the right thing for me to do in my business? Is this where I want my business to go? How do I get more business? You know, there's a lot of self reflection that goes on. And so there can be a lot of self doubt, or imposter syndrome that you kind of can struggle with and be like, why would anybody pay me to do this? What makes me qualified? And so to find your identity in Christ, and not, the work that you can do, or the results you get is a big part of have been has been a big part of my journey?

Twanna Henderson: Yeah, yeah, I would suspect that you would definitely have to lean on the Lord to just kind of stay focused and not to get kind of, you know, pulled in all these different directions and stuff. And, and just really trusting him in that space is crucial. You know, because there can just be that, like you said, the waiting and just, you know, making decisions can be tough, because it comes back to you. You can't put it on anybody else. You know, many women would agree, including myself that just trying to maintain balance is something that seems to be something that we are constantly striving for. How have you been able to balance growing a business with other areas of your life, like parenting and marriage and, you know, volunteering in church ministry and just life in general? How are you handling that we want to know?

Melissa Meyer: Sometimes, maybe not super great. But you just have to set boundaries and say, This is the priority right now. And this is what I'm focusing on. And this is what I'm spending my time on. I will not work at the certain hours, because you know, my kids are home, they're done with school for the day, this is their time. So a lot of boundaries. And that comes from evaluating how am I spending my time? Am I doing things that waste time, that don't get me closer to my goal of being a good mom, being a good marriage partner, being a good person in our, you know, part of our church doing my part? Am I doing things that don't have any value? Yeah. And so I do a time audit. Every once in a while, where I write down every 15 to 30 minutes, how did I spend that 15 minute block that 30 minute block? What did I do? And then do that for a week? Go back and look and say, Oh, I spent five hours total this week playing this game online on my iPad, or whatever, or my phone, or well, I watch a lot of TV at night, or well, I should get up earlier in the morning because if I'm behind, by the time the kids get up, it takes me half the day to catch up to what I wanted to get done. And then also just time blocking and saying this is you know, these two hours on Monday morning, this is what I do. These two hours on Tuesday afternoon, this is what I do, with some flexibility. Because you can't be super rigid and say this is what, I have every minute planned out. Because if anything happens, where your husband calls and says, ey, can you grab our insurance policy, I need a check on something, and it throws off your day, you know, or, you know, unexpected things come up every day in everybody's life.

Twanna Henderson: I love the idea of a time audit. I mean, that that is really good. Because, you know, I think all of us would probably, you know, just be amazed at, you know, where we're spending our time. And, you know, even when we say we don't have time, and we realize we do have time, we just haven't maybe used it as effectively as we could have, you know, at different times of the day. And so yeah, that could be kind of convicting though.

Melissa Meyer: Yes, and I'm not saying that if you take an hour to read the newest novel you want to read or whatever, but that's a waste of time. We you know, need to take care of ourselves have downtime, so you can't go beat go go go all the time. But really take a hard honest look at where you're spending your time. And where could you improve it? Yeah, to maybe reach the goals you want, whether that's in your family life or your work life.

Twanna Henderson: So tell us what exactly you do with this and being creative.

Melissa Meyer: Sure, I do different types of writing for different types of businesses. So, like, this month, I did some website copy for a window treatment business. I did a press release for a physical therapy practice. So I do different kinds of writing that businesses need. But maybe don't have time for it's on the to do list, but it's always at the bottom because they don't like to do it. Or they don't know how to do it. And so I do website, copy, case studies, blog posts, social media posts, podcast notes, things like that, for different businesses. Usually women on business, businesses, but not always. And then also, I work with some ministries, doing some editing, podcast notes, stuff, things like that. And I love it. I love words.

Twanna Henderson: Awesome. Awesome. And you know, and a lot of people don't? And so that's why they need someone like you. Because it can be hard. I mean, I think, you know, just translating stuff into writing can be very difficult, if you're not really gifted in that area.

Melissa Meyer: And sometimes it's good to have somebody who's not in your industry writing for you. Because if you're a whatever, physical therapist, chiropractor, whatever, you use that jargon, which to the person that might be coming in your office doesn't know what that means. So you need someone from an outside perspective to kind of relay that information in a way that people can understand.

Twanna Henderson: Yeah, that makes sense. That makes sense. Well, I know there are women who are listening who are contemplating starting a business or who are even working on growing their own business, what, what encouraging words do you have for them?

Melissa Meyer: I would say, find some people who are like minded like you, and join up with them. If you can. Get a support system in place. I would also say, go to people who know you and love you and say, What are my strengths? What am I really good at? What do you think I could do as a business that would really feed into the talents and gifts that God has given me? Because sometimes it's not apparent to everybody. They might not have something that they've loved since they were eight years old, like writing and reading. But I would say get an honest assessment from someone and say, do you? Do you think I would be good at this? Or what do you think I would make it good at. I just, you will never know what you can do until you try. So if you can take the little leap of faith. Ask God what do you have for me? Wait for his timing. Man, if you just have the desire and the passion and the green light from God, there'll be no stopping you.

Twanna Henderson: Yeah, and I think that's the key having the green light from him.

Melissa Meyer: Yes, yes.

Twanna Henderson: And not the green light from us. So I know your your website Bets and Ben Creative betsaandbencreative.com says that you like to work with three types of people, the go getter, the creatives, and the women of faith. Talk to us about those three types.

Melissa Meyer: Well, you know, the go getters, they just get things done. And that describes a lot of women I know. When they are juggling motherhood, or have juggled motherhood and maybe they're empty nesters now, and they're looking for something new and different. I love those kind of women. And then just the creative kind of people that think, Okay, I've got this idea. I just don't know how to get that into words. How do I convey that to other people? I can help you with that. And then the women of faith, I just love women of faith. I have been surrounded by women of faith my whole life. I'm involved in a Bible study my church that I just love. I volunteered with different women who just love Jesus and want to help other people know how to love Jesus.

Twanna Henderson: Yeah, that's good. That's good. Well, as we close, this has been really good. And I hope that I'm sure it has really inspired some women. I'd like to ask you to pray for our listeners who may be trying to clearly hear the Lord's voice about entrepreneurship and, and even those who are maybe even some somewhat fearful about making that leap. Would you do that?

Melissa Meyer: Yes, I would love to do that.

Twanna Henderson: Thank you.

Melissa Meyer: Father, I just pray right now, for the women listening, who maybe you have planted a little seed in them, of thinking about starting a business doing something a little scary. Father, I pray for these women that they would just wait for your voice, your prompting to say, this is what I have planned for you and I want you to go for it. Give these women courage, strength, tenacity, and a tender heart to hear what you have to say to them and what you want them to do. No matter what stage of life they're in. I pray that they are just seeking you, asking for wisdom, asking for your plan for them and that you will be faithful to answer those prayers. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.

Twanna Henderson: Amen. Melissa, it has been so great having you on T Time today. Thank you. I wish Bets and Ben all the all the success. And to all of our listeners I'm Twana Henderson and I look forward to connecting with you on the next time be blessing of the Lord.