Queen, this is something I didn’t want to share. Part of me still doesn’t. And yet, I know this will be great and really freeing. For most of my career, I haven’t shared failure or bumps along the way. Today, that changes.
I’m here with Laura Belgray, a celebrity copywriter and an extraordinary human being. Instead of an interview, this episode ended up being my personal therapy session with Laura. I’m so grateful to her for all the wisdom, insight, and understanding, and I’m sure her words will serve you well too.
Recently, I had to come face to face with failure. This story is related to my business, but it’s very personal and vulnerable to me. I wanted to share it in part because I needed to work through it, but mostly because I want you to know you’re not alone.
This is something I want to leave behind. And on this last day of 2020, let’s get it all out of our system. Everyone is doing their best, and today is the day to leave behind feeling less-than just because something didn’t work out.
We’re all in this together and I’m so proud of everything we’ve done.
What Queenhood Really Means to Me
When I got on this call with Laura, I had to make a choice about how vulnerable I want to get on my podcasts. But because Laura is a copywriting expert and my issue was related to copy, I decided to be brave and lay it all on the table.
I felt like doing a deep dive into something personal, something that was unclear to me—something that I’ve been struggling with.
For the past 15 years, I have done relatively well with business coaching and I’ve enjoyed the process. I always wanted to empower women through financial success. My business turned into business coaching, which was fine—I love helping women make money because of who they became in the process. Today, that chapter is closed, relatively speaking.
Of all the things I did, I’m still obsessed with the concept of Queenhood. It’s based on the ancient story of Queen Esther of Persia. For me, it means that we’re all these ordinary women that have a great calling in our lives. We’re all meant to do our thing, and the time to do it is now.
I’ve always been spiritual and I’ve always wanted to live the lifestyle of divine living, not just divine working. This is my message and I’ve been putting it out in the world, through Instagram, emails, other channels.
So, This Is What Actually Happened
This year, Black Friday came around and my team came up with the idea to do an online book club. My book “The Audacity to Be Queen” had recently come out, so this seemed like a great idea and I was really excited.
We promoted the event and we ended up with 200 people signing up. As you can imagine, this wasn’t great news to me. As Laura said, this number can be amazing or it can be a cold shower. But for me, I’ve been in this business for 20 years. It just felt very defeating.
But, if I can help even one person, I’m available. I got on to the call with 186 happy campers and we had a great time. We were having a blast, people loved the message, the entire event was so much fun. Three hours in, we still had 176 people on the line.
As the event was ending, I did my pitch. The audience seemed lit up about my message, Queenhood and spirituality, so I invited them to join me in the Q Club. This is my membership site where Gina DeVee meets Netflix meets Food Network meets Travel and Leisure. It basically costs $1 a day to become a member. So, I pitched this offer and we got a whopping 20 signups.
Now, I pride myself on my positive attitude, but I’m not going to lie, this was a huge blow for me.
And then, one hour later, I got on a call with one of my friends. She told me she had an incredible Black Friday and had 1000 people sign up in 20 minutes, with 100 people signing up every day after that. I love this woman so much and she deserved all that success. But, 1000 was my number. This is what I wanted to achieve and I’m not ashamed to admit it, I just felt very defeated at this point.
My Big Realization
So, I’m not the one to sit around and whine. I do my work. I hung up the phone with my friend and immediately called one of my coaches. I just didn’t get it—this was supposed to work out. Why am I the internet’s best-kept secret?
She asked me: “What’s your resistance to being in public?” And I said, no, I don’t have any resistance, I’m ready for it, I’m there for it.
She advised me to write an Instagram post and I realized just how much I dislike writing Instagram posts. It’s my least favorite thing to do. I don’t write on my Instagram. I have nothing to do with it.
Then it hit me, it really hit me. I have a wonderfully talented 20-something writing all my stuff. She’s great but she’s not me. I’m not showing up and I’m not writing from my heart. And here I was then, surprised that I don’t have a bigger and more dedicated Instagram following. Suddenly, it was clear exactly what was missing from my feed.
The Importance of Being Earnest
At this point, Laura jumped in with some priceless advice. We both remembered Cathy Heller and the incredible success she’s had. And when you look at Cathy, all she does every day is speak from the heart. Now, we’re not all Cathy Heller and we can’t do what she does.
But what we can do is be raw, honest, and vulnerable. People may like seeing the perfect picture, but they rarely relate to it. It’s not personable. It doesn’t inspire commitment and passion.
There are people who have millions of followers yet can’t sell 30 shirts. ANd there are people who have a small audience that’s crazy about them. The difference? People who show up as their real selves and share their real struggles are the ones who have people rally around them.
As Laura advised me, people love a sense of relief. We all love to see a message that shows behind-the-scenes. Not everything I touch turns to gold, and because I’m a positive person, I never felt like sharing the bumps in the road. I’m lit up about aspirational messages, but talking to Laura, I realized there’s something to be said about sharing both the good and the bad.
Everyone can smell a script, and they never like it. People will judge you either way, so why not let them judge you for something real?
As Laura told me, a sense of relief is the biggest value we can provide. People always talk about providing value in terms of actionable advice, but the value can also mean making someone feel less alone.
Being a Business Therapist on the DL
Now, I had to know how Laura became so great at giving business advice. As a celebrity copywriter, she has a mastermind, but she told me, they don’t really discuss copy. Laura’s real passion is helping people make their business a 100% expression of their personality so that they can get paid just to be themselves.
Right now, she’s an undercover business therapist, but that’s the direction she wants to take in the future. Another big part of her dream is writing a book.
Laura is well-known for her work with Marie Forleo and being a copywriter for Joan Rivers, Kevin Hart, Kathy Griffin, Ted Danson, Vanessa Williams, Roseanne Barr, Kelly Ripa, Adam West, and many others.
But, she has always wanted to do something that will get her recognized as being herself. The book is her chance to shine as Laura Belgray, period. The title is “Tough Titties” and it’s a series of personal essays following a coming of age story in New York. It gives you permission to live life and to find success on your own terms and your own timeline. Needless to say, this book is a must-have, so make sure you keep an eye out when it comes out in 2021.
Unapologetically, Be You. Just Be More YOU.
If there’s the main takeaway, this is it. I’m ready to give more of myself on social media and show up as an authentic, unapologetic Gina DeVee. In this new year, I hope you also find the strength and power to show up as yourself, wherever that’s needed and wanted.
Finally, Queen, I want to say Happy New Year! I love you. I appreciate you. I love hearing from you and I’m looking forward to all the joy, dazzle, and love we’re yet to share. Thank you for all your support and let’s make this new year the best one yet!
Queen… Laura just blew my mind today. I’m sure you want to connect with her and learn more about what she does. Go visit her website, get her amazing offers, and keep an eye out for her book.
We’d also be so honored to hear your takeaways! Screenshot this episode and tag us on Instagram at @ginadevee and @talkingshrimpnyc. Let’s get talking, my dear Queen!
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I’m delighted to invite you to my 5-Day Free Training: CONDUCT BUSINESS LIKE A QUEEN!
From January 18-22, I’ll be live every day in our Facebook Group at 9 am PT/12 pm ET providing in-depth coaching and training. In this challenge, you will discover your unique purpose, master your mindset, and transform your “money story”. PLUS, I share with you my own proven business strategies that can provide consistent, reliable income for you, too.
It’s time to do things different in 2021. It’s time to put you, your dreams, and your purpose first. It’s time to do life and business #LikeAQueen.