1. How/why did you begin your business?
I would like to say it happened by divine interventions. Honestly, I always knew I was a teacher – the way that Socrates saw it — and I’ve been a professional teacher for a while. In that I moved into mentoring and assisting learners, staff, and colleagues on their paths. Using my intuition I have, over the years helped many and then someone simply suggested that I should make this my business. I believe it was mostly that and the fact that when I speak – people tend to resonate so it made perfect sense to take my calling to the next level and be a speaker and mentor.
Today, I see more clearly than ever what happens when I connect with people from the stage or at other events; the minute I tune in things shift and it is obvious that my service is needed and appreciated. Working with individuals, entrepreneurs, and organizations I engage a techniques that unveil “The Hidden Power of Patterns” ™ through which we then go on the fast track to success and opening doors of expansion beyond belief. Seeing and experiencing that means I am on the right track as I am a servant and my mission is to help people (at least 1 million) to lead their happy, authentic lives.
2. What has been your biggest challenge and how did you overcome it?
I would say that there are 2 big challenges for me:
- Giving sufficient time to my family while completing the final stage of the business and to fully serve. I promised my daughter she comes first, and I believe that is necessary – so I am balancing not working or working very little when I am with her, which is a lot.
- Taking the plunge and sometimes putting myself first; not giving it all away though I am a “collabora-holic” as I like to put it. I love connecting people with one-another, supporting others, teaching others and sometimes I need to focus on what I need to be of service, too. Luckily I have been able to create a support system that gives me “wake up calls”. Just being open to the opportunities so that I can be of the best service possible is sometimes a little challenging.
3. How do you define SUCCESS?
Success to me means living authentically your/my life the way it bring you happiness; this means being happy and as balanced as possible while serving people who I can serve. It includes, as a very important factor, my family being happy and being able to spend time with them.
Success to me clearly is connected to my mission to helping people lead their happiest lives, whatever that may look like.
4. If there was one thing you wish you knew before you began your business, what would that be?
I wish I had known more about the length of time it takes to establish the business firmly and with profit, even if there is a clear need and desire for your services. Though I had done the research it still is surprising to me at times how long it takes, not to mention that there are a lot of people who do not believe in collaboration or sharing. To me collaboration is key in supporting people but there are so many for whom competition still is the only way to go and they will do anything to prevent you from moving forward, which is sad even though I am able to handle that given my long experience with competitive-minded people.
When establishing and growing the business, I have come to learn that we will get a lot of advice, most of it well-intentioned but it can surely lead to loosing oneself just because you trust the advisors and because you are focused on reaching those you wish to help.
The time it takes can be very intimidating, especially with added obstacles because you are under the microscope as a public figure, but it’s worth it so ultimately: follow your dream and don’t give up trusting yourself.
5. What makes you an innovative woman?
I ask “why not” instead “why” – I am a visionary, I see things that are possible and help people dream and achieve their goals. Innovation means being able to see beyond the current limitations, beyond the obstacles and beyond the wildest dreams. I see, envision, and help create in ways that are at times considered unorthodox or revolutionary and – they work.
I am able to speak to any person, any group and every time I do the message is for them, what they need right now because as an innovative woman I can see what is needed quickly and provide possible actions steps.
For more information visit www.natalieforest.com (coming soon) or connect with her on Facebook or Twitter. Natalie is also the Today’s Innovative Woman City Director for the Baltimore area, find out more by visiting her City Page.