“I hope this email finds you and your family safe and well…” That’s how work emails start these days, and I was afraid to reply with the truth: “To be honest I’m hanging in there by a thread trying to juggle my day-job (which I’m lucky to have), home-schooling three kids under seven years, and supporting my elderly mother who has been sensibly cocooning since March.
I was utterly exhausted, which was made worse by living under the guillotine of job losses. I worried that at any moment my husband’s business could go under or indeed I could lose my job or my hours could be cut back.
But things are never as bad as they seem at three in the morning and this is what I told myself as I slipped into what seemed to be a lunatic’s dream sequence.
At dawn I got up and set off to hike the mountain behind my house. Nature has always been my reset but for the last 10 years I had a job which involved a 4 hour round trip to work (this was balanced out by the fact that I loved this job), and I also had three small demanding kids (also balanced out by the fact that I loved them), however, there wasn’t much time for hiking.
I hadn’t set foot on this mountain since I was a kid. It was harder to ascend that I remembered but the struggle upwards was a welcomed distraction from the thoughts in my head. By the time I reached the top something happened that would probably never have happened if I hadn’t given myself this headspace to shut off my thinking, because that’s what happens when you do a hard hike (especially when you’re unfit). You have to concentrate carefully on picking each step so you don’t slip or fall; there’s no space for other thoughts as you concentrate on safely putting one foot in front of the other.
As I took a deep inhale at the top of the mountain I realised two things:
- I’d no phone signal so no one could get me, or ask me to do anything, or make any demands on me, this was bliss (as long as I could get down the mountain…).
- And secondly, it struck me that the solution to my problem had been right in front of me all along but I’d been too frantic and freaked out to see it.
For the last two years I’d been carrying out academic research on what the exceptional 10% of employees do differently to outperform everyone else. A decade of independent studies in the area of high performance revealed that the exceptional 10% have a certain way of working which challenges our deep-rooted social and personal work norms.
For example, the exceptional 10% do not work long hours, they never work late or at weekends.
It was also clear that exceptional has a pattern which is fully replicable.
So I used this pattern to create framework – a step-by-step program, so anyone could learn and replicate the strategies, skills and approaches of the exceptional 10% and increase their productivity so they too can outperform everyone else.
This research lay in my laptop, of no use to anyone else as I hadn’t finished it or published it, but I did have a framework ready to go and now I could be the first one to see if it truly was replicable.
I used my B.R.A.I.N. R.E.S.T™ framework to launch my first online business, and even though I’d no business background, no tech know-how, no investment money, and perhaps scariest of all – no childcare – I launched in six weeks and made a profit of €20,000 in the first month.
The business was an online course called Mum to Mogul that teaches other mothers, like me, how to launch their own courses based on their expertise or life experience. I’m a third level lecturer and course director of a BSc so I do know about course creation and I know what makes compelling content as I’ve been a TV producer for over a decade.
I showed my students how they could create a course once and resell it over and over again on automation – and make money while they slept.
I want mothers everywhere to benefit from this course so now I give this training for free
My only other advice is to carve out a little alone time, go for a walk before your family wakes, let nature be your reset, and problems which looked like they had no solution will begin to unravel, but for the love of God don’t get stuck up a mountain without a phone signal. It was a muddy nightmare getting down, but easier as a huge weight had been lifted from my shoulders.
****** Trina Rea is a best-selling author, a Fulbright TechImpact Scholar, former visiting Scholar to New York University, and is currently a third level lecturer and course director of a BSc in Ireland. She’s founder of www.Mumtomogul.com and www.brainrest.com