On today’s episode of the Modern Direct Seller Podcast, public speaker, podcast host, and joy ambassador Minessa Konecky is sharing her best tips for bringing business and happiness into better balance. After experiencing a decline in her mental and physical health from focusing too closely on a productivity goal, Minessa is helping others avoid the same by refocusing our thinking, training our brains to leave less room for distraction, and putting systems in place that work hard for our wellbeing and overall success. Using your time and energy more wisely starts here!
Time based notes:
- 1:26 Minessa Konecky introduction
- 8:42 The trick of productivity
- 11:19 Let go of the numbers game
- 12:52 Turn off your notifications
- 15:55 Rethink your busy work
- 19:24 Find your coach
- 21:20 Build effective systems
Bring Business and Joy into Balance with Minessa Konecky
On this week’s episode of the Modern Direct Seller Podcast, public speaker and Stop Shoulding All Over Yourself podcast host Minessa Konecky joined us to share her best tips for bringing our work and personal lives into better balance. She helps those who are struggling to find joy after years of trying to balance running a business, having a chronic illness or being a parent or a caregiver, and then feeling like they just couldn’t get there. She’s worked with doctors, administrators, business owners, direct sellers, stay at home moms, and found that the issue is the same no matter where she went: She’s surrounded by capable, smart, conscientious, and hungry people who don’t realize that the same things that are their strengths are also killing them. But, she encourages those she works with to control those skills to make money and be successful without sacrificing their health, family, relationships, and happiness. Her philosophy is that you can be happy and successful right now. It just requires a shift in how you utilize your emotional, mental, physical, and intellectual resources.
So, Minessa, I know that you’ve shared openly that you used to be a workaholic. And, you’ve really learned how to help others in that journey optimize their time. Do you mind sharing your personal story, what that looked like for you, and how you got there?
So, I have been a workaholic my whole life. For years, I really held onto to the philosophy that the more you work, the more successful you’ll be and the more money you’ll make. And, it wasn’t until I left LuLaRoe and started running my own business that without the boundaries around me that were set by the working hours of an office, I completely derailed. I was working all the time. And, at one point we were making more money, doing really well, but there was another point at which we reached diminishing returns, and I was starting to feel like I was working a lot more for not as much of a return as I was hoping for.
And then, during some of those periods, I said to my wife, “Oh my God, I’m so exhausted. I just think I’m just gonna go back to corporate where I have a 9:00 to 5:00 job.” And, she said something that resonated really strongly with me. She said, “How would that change anything? You were exactly like this when you were working in corporate.” And, I realized that she was right. That what I’d do was that I’d come home, and then I’d work a couple hours at night, but just those extra couple of hours made a difference to me. And, I was like, “Well, yeah, I’m a workaholic. I’m getting so much stuff done.” And, I wore the fact that I was doing so much stuff as a badge of honor. But, eventually, I ended up destroying my body. I went into adrenal fatigue; I was exhausted for so many months. I was so sick. And, I realized that something had to change. I just didn’t know what it was.
Then, I got this book called Laziness Does Not Exist by Devon Price. It really outlines well what happened to me at that time, which is, you hit a wall, and you realize, “I don’t want to do this anymore. I don’t want to do it this way.” Like, we don’t feel like we have any other options, because the messages that we usually get from our companies are “Book more. Sell more. Do more. Make more money. And then, one day, you will be free of this feeling.” The fact of the matter is, you’re never going to be free of this feeling as long as that’s the philosophy, because you’re never going to feel like you’ve done enough.
So, I basically stopped and just kind of realized that I needed to change my whole approach. Like, I needed to start from the ground up. And, I started by prioritizing myself. Therapy really, really helped. But, the most important thing was recognizing that my health and my body have value, and I am worth putting the time and effort in to make sure that I am healthy and sustainable, the same way that I’m doing in my business or for my dogs. Really, that’s what it came down to.
I think so much of that resonates. And, I think, especially in this industry of direct sales, where you’re working from home, there really aren’t clear boundaries unless you create those boundaries. Like, I love to work. And, I spend too much time working, because I really have to remind myself, “Okay, like, have you taken a break today? Have you moved your body today? Have you stepped away from your computer today? Are you taking care of yourself today?” Because, it’s so easy just to go, go, go as you’re working towards that next big milestone with that achiever personality.
Something I want to say about that, actually, is that one of the things that many of us think is that if we’re enjoying it, or I love it, like, then it’s okay. But, a really great example of this is Universal Studios, right? I love Universal Studios. But, at some point, no matter how much you love Universal Studios, your body is like, “You need to rest,” and you will go home, and you will listen to your body. You’re not just going to keep walking until you pass out in line for a ride. You’re gonna eventually go home and lay down.
We have a hard time thinking of our businesses through that same lens, because it’s also tied into our belief about productivity and you’re a good person if you’re working. There’s a value judgment. So, when you combine those things, it can become really dangerous, because it’s like, “Well, it’s okay if I push myself to this, because I’m doing it for something good,” which is productivity. Which is being a valuable member of society. So, we can trick ourselves into thinking that we have to run on empty because that’s what is expected.
Okay, so how do we do it, Minessa? We know that there’s an opportunity for us to work less and still build this business and this life of our dreams. So, how do we do that? What are all your secrets to help us create those boundaries?
I wish that it was as simple as saying, “Just work less. Just rest. Just sleep,” right? And the truth is, it’s not. We already know that. Because, if it was that easy, we would have done it already.
So, this is not something that anyone’s coming into new, being like, “I haven’t tried anything to feel that sense of calm or peace.” So, I think the first thing to recognize is that the solution isn’t where you think it’s gonna be. They say that if you’re a surgeon, every problem looks like a surgical problem, right? So, if you’re a hammer, everything looks like a nail. The same thing is true for us. When you’re feeling tired, overwhelmed, or out of balance, you’re gonna go to your regular go-tos—whatever they are—because you don’t know what else to go to. Nobody’s ever told you. So, I want to encourage you to think about not whether any of these ideas or tactics will work for you, but how can you make them fit into your framework.
What I would recommend is, first, turn off all of your notifications. You know how, like, sometimes you’ll be sitting there, and somebody’s phone goes bzz, right? Every time that happens, your body gets a shot of cortisol. If you get a shot, and then another shot, and then another shot, what that does, it heightens your stress response. And, the body is not supposed to have that much cortisol in it all the time, or adrenaline, and so what ends up happening is, you will be in a heightened state of stress all the time, simply because your phone is on vibrate. Turning off all notifications—within reason—is where I say start. What you’re trying to do is eliminate the things that are getting in the way of your day while you are working.
Because, what happens when your phone buzzes is that, whether you actually turn to pick it up or not, your brain is now distracted for 23 minutes. Studies have shown that it’s going to take you 23 minutes to get back on to whatever topic you were on. The more that happens, the more the bzz, bzz, bzz keeps going, that whole day, you’re partially distracted. So, the capacity of work that you’re doing is now very low. You’re operating in the redzone, but you’re working. So, as long as you’re working, you feel like you’re doing work. But, the truth is, you’re not actually producing anything. If you turn off your notifications, you’ll now be able to focus on that task, get it done, and so now you don’t need to work for four hours to do an hour’s worth of work.
Lowering the amount of the stress hormones that are in your body starts by eliminating some of the major stressors that exist out there that we don’t think about. And, this is a really great one, because it’s not anything you have to do actively. Once you do it, you will already have put something in place that will help heal you over the next couple of weeks.
I love that. I turned my notifications off a couple of years ago, and there’s no turning back. All of a sudden, there’s no fires, or no urgency. Like, what’s the worst gonna happen? I’m gonna respond to somebody when I check in a couple hours later?
That is exactly the key, is that when you have that heightened stress response, we are conditioned that everything is urgent. As you have less of that hormone in your body, things that used to seem urgent don’t seem urgent anymore, and you start to realize that you are now more willing to slow down.
But, the other thing is that “busy work” is not what you would think, too. Because, one of the things that’s busy work is buying the course that you’re thinking about buying. Don’t buy it every time. And, I’m saying this as someone who’s sold courses before, because what I found is, people tend to buy a ton of courses in the hopes that it’s going to help them change their business. They do a little bit of the course, and then they don’t do any more of it. And then, they do another one, and another one, and another one, and another one.
The thing that I want to impress upon you is that the basic practices that your direct sales companies tell you to do about booking parties, and making/building relationships, that is actually, fundamentally, the best way for you to grow your business. But, you need to do it in a more strategic way. So, rather than going on social media and trying to learn the next hot trend, which is going to take up all your time and effort, instead, join the local networking group. Not to go sell them your products, but to go make them your friends. These are the people who are going to introduce you to your next set of customers. Thinking that way is going to give you the ability to share what you do without going in for the hard sell so fast, which will allow you to build more nurturing relationships.
I think you’re right on. With the courses and the training and jumping on the hottest trends, I think it’s really easy to be distracted by the next shiny object, right? And, that’s gonna hold you back from actually going out, and talking to people, and making connections, and focusing on building that relationship. I mean, I know companies that are doing training twice a week, and, their employees feel like, “I’ve gotta go to this training. I’ve got to go to the next training. I’ve got to go to this.” Just go work your business.
And, you know what? I’m glad you said what you just did about the fact that they’re always doing trainings. One of the things that I do want to say is like, if you’re reading this blog post, or you’re listening to the Modern Direct Seller Podcast, or you’re following Becky, let her be your trainer. Let her be your guide. If it’s someone else, then follow that person. Use your home office and your company as team building, as product expertise, but find yourself a coach that you trust, who’s direction you want to follow, and follow them.
Okay, let’s switch gears and talk systems. I know you’re a systems kind of person, right? And, we know that systems can actually save us time and make us more money. So, what are those systems that you love?
The thing about systems is that a lot of people overcomplicate what a system is. So, the first thing is, is a system is when you do the same thing over and over and over again, to the point where it is almost automatic. When that happens, you use less active brain cells, and what you produce tends to be better, because you’re practiced at it.
My favorite types of systems are ones that you don’t have to think too much about once you’ve set them in place. For example, if you every day know that you’re going to be posting something at 10:00 AM—an informational quote or something like that, you know you have to figure out your plan every month. You say, “At this time, I’m gonna write the informational quotes. I’m gonna write the posts. I’m gonna get them up there.” And figure out exactly what your pathway is and how you’re gonna get those quotes out there. Then, when the time comes for you to sit down and write them, the only work you actually have to do with your brain is figuring out what informational posts you want to write.
But, let’s say you don’t have that in place. Now, it’s not planned. So, on Monday night, you’re gonna be like, “I need to write this quote.” So, now you’re feeling tense all day long. You’re thinking, “What am I going to write? When am I going to post it?” And, because you want to do one every day, you are now feeling that way every day, and it becomes a hornet in your brain. Every time you don’t have a system or a process for something, you’re adding something else that your brain has to worry about, or keep ahold of, and that is going to exhaust you.
So, first and foremost, I would strongly recommend following Megan Sumrell, because that woman is an organizational and time management queen, and she has systems that will help you get ahold of your schedule. The other thing that I’m going to recommend is that on Minessa.com, you can download my “Hustleproof Your Life” handout. It will give you four steps. They’re very small. They’re really tiny. But, each of them will eliminate 20 hours out of your week that you are currently spending on working. It reframes little things that you’re doing in your day-to-day to buy more time to allow you to focus more. And then, what that’s going to do is that the courses that you already have, the stuff that you’re doing with Becky, the stuff that you’re doing with your therapist, things like that, you will now feel like you have more bandwidth in your mind and body to be able to actually do those things, right? And, that’s really the key. So now, all the things that you spent money on before have more value, because you can actually do them.
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Take Action: What is one way that you can reframe your mindset for a healthier lifestyle?