2013 July

Secrets of my Success: Kismet Lola Mussa of Kismet Lola London

07 18 2013

Fancy yourself a little arm-candy?  This week’s Secrets of my Success interview is with the gorgeous Kismet Lola Mussa, the talent behind Kismet Lola London.  Her Middle-Eastern-inspired jewellery line is so gorgeous, you’ll be wanting to show off your summer skin with one of her beautiful handmade designs. 

Want to know the secret of her ever-so-stylish success?  Read on…

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What is your title/position?

Owner and designer at Kismet Lola London

What has been the ‘defining moment’ that set you on the path you’re on today?  How did you get to where you are now?

I wouldn’t say there has been a particular defining moment. It’s about having passion, being inspired and making those things you dream about a little bit more real. (Click to tweet it)

Tell me about your vision/goals for your future.

It sounds so cheesy but ultimately I want to be able to say, at any given moment, that I’m content doing what I love. My goals and visions are bound to change and grow, they have no limits. (Click to tweet it)

What has been most effective for you in your achievements so far, in turning your goals/visions into reality?  Where do you start?

Being productive. Unfortunately (or fortunate sometimes) I’m not one of those people that will write down a clear strategy and then work on it. I’m the opposite. I throw myself in and then think ‘oh no, I need a plan’. Its different for everyone I guess, but I need to feel like I am doing something, not just talking about it.


How do you stay motivated and inspired?

To keep motivated and inspired, I feel I have to be open to the world. Inspiration can be found in the unlikeliest of places.  As soon as you start to cut yourself off from anything, you are losing out. I love ‘me time’ just as much as friends and family time, I love exploring and doing new things but I also love chilling with some YouTube in the garden. There is nothing better than having dreams and belief in yourself. They should bottle it!

What has been your biggest lesson learned?

Never Give Up. It’s so true that everything happens when it is meant to, so keep striving. (Click to tweet it)

What have been (or still are) your biggest fears and challenges, and how do you overcome them?

Oh if I was to list my fears, we’d be here all day. But I’ve kind of started to realise that having these fears is part of what drives me to achieve my dreams.  I just get on with it and make it work.

KismetLola showcase

What do you believe is the secret of your success?

I’m constantly growing and learning so I don’t really have any secrets. However, I’m generally very determined once I put my mind to something. It also helps that I’m quite stubborn.

What 3 tips would you offer ambitious women reading this?

Believe you can do it, and then do it. No one else will make it happen for you. (Click to tweet it)

Be nice – it counts for a lot. (Click to tweet it)

Always carry flats, you never know when you will need them.

What book has most inspired you?

I don’t have just one… Different books have inspired me in different ways: they’ve made me laugh, given me faith, given me food for thought.  For me, it’s about drawing from different places.


All images via Kismet Lola London

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The Wealth Files: Why the yellow brick road to riches is NOT about the money, honey

07 17 2013

Do you want to be rich?  Like, really rich?  Just how rich do you want to be?  

OK, so on the yellow brick road to riches, you need to:

– Make a commitment, to break through the money ceiling that limits you, and declare what you want to achieve – your big money goal.

– Let go of your out-of-date money rules 

And then… what?

– Forget about money altogether

Yes, you heard me right.  Forget about it, at least for a moment.  Money isn’t the raison d’être.  Just like chickens, goats and grain that went before it, money is a symbol.  Achieving your money goal isn’t simply about seeing a super-healthy bank balance.  It’s about what money, this symbol we covet, can enable you to be, do, have.

So, let me ask you this: when you achieve that big money goal, what exactly do you plan to do with it?  What will you be doing?  Who with? Where will you be? How will you feel? What will life be like?

Think of it like a bucket list.  If it came to the crunch, if your days were numbered, what would be top priority?  How would you be spending your time?

Get crystal clear on what the focus of your money goal is.  What motivates it?

I’d love for you to share the focus of your money goal: what is the life you want to create?  Share in the Comments below.

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Tools of the Trade: Download the budget planner

07 15 2013

“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail” – Benjamin Franklin

And the great Mr F’s words are especially true for the financial planning of your business.  Accounting and sophisticated planning are to be left to the experts but having a plan for your business is a must.  Financials, not my strong point.  Organisation, on the other hand, is.  Today, I’m sharing a copy of my budget planner which you are free to download here.

I’d love to know what you think in the Comments below.  What’s your attitude to planning the mulla?


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On the menu for the #GlitteratiSocial… Watermelon & Strawberry Cocktail

07 12 2013

Are you ready to taste summer in a glass? Today’s recipe for the #GlitteratiSocial, a Watermelon & Strawberry Cocktail created by She Knows, is sure to be a refreshing way to end the week.

You will need:

  • 2 cups watermelon, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup strawberries, diced
  • 1 cup coconut water
  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar
  • Juice from 1 lime
  • 1 cup ice
  • 2 to 4 shots of white rum

To create:

  1. In a blender combine watermelon, strawberries, coconut water, agave nectar and lime juice and pulse until smooth.
  2. Add one cup of ice to the blender and pulse until the ice is crushed.
  3. Divide between four glasses. You can optionally add one shot of rum or vodka to each glass.
  4. Serve immediately with a straw and garnish with strawberry slices or citrus wedges.

Join the #GlitteratiSocial get-together on Twitter today at 5pm (BST). Today’s topic is “what ding are you making in the world?”. What is the one big message you want your customers to get about you and your business?

I hope to connect with you later x

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Secrets of my Success: Polly Noble

07 11 2013

Polly Noble is one busy lady.

Aside from writing her second book, she’s a certified health coach, raw food chef and, most recently, a partner in a new venture – a juice bar and holistic lounge. Phew, a huge achievement don’t you think? What’s most inspiring though is that Polly’s first priority is her health and wellbeing. Having been diagnosed with cancer twice by the age of 28, Polly is living her passion by using her experiences to empower, inspire and motivate others to live healthily and happily. She’s just returned from a 6-week sabbatical to focus on her healing and has kindly shared her Secrets of Success in today’s interview.

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What is your title/position:

Writer, certified health coach, raw vegan chef & coach.

What has been the ‘defining moment’ that set you on the path you’re on today?

Being diagnosed with cervical cancer at the age of 24.

How did you get to where you are now?

It’s taken a lot of hard work, faith in myself and a belief that when you do something from a heart-centred place and the intention behind it is genuine and authentic, that you will be rewarded.

Tell me about your vision/goals for your future.

I’m currently writing my second book, a diet and lifestyle guide, which I can’t wait to release and I plan on writing many more. I have just opened up a juice bar and holistic lounge with my friend Kris, The Core, which we are confident will be the first of many. Within The Core I have launched my raw food brand The Noble Kitchen which I am looking at expanding into other healthy eating establishments and juice bars. I am also talking to a production company about making a food tv show. But other than that, I plan to keep walking my talk, improving my health and living from a state of joy! (Click to tweet it)

What has been most effective for you in your achievements so far, in turning your goals/visions into reality?

Doing something everyday. I like to be proactive and keep busy so just taking one small step every day towards actualising my dreams has been the most effective for me.

Where do you start?

My business and website have grown very organically. At the beginning I had no idea or vision of where I wanted to be, or where I was going, so I have kind of made it up as I’ve gone along. But these days, I have a very clear idea and vision of how I am growing my business and my brand. For those starting out, I would say; think hard about what you want to put out into the world, think about your messaging, what you want people to take away from visiting your site or business and slowly start to take steps to building it. (Click to tweet it)

How do you stay motivated and inspired?

Ambition. I know what I want and I know that by taking consistent daily action that I will achieve my goals.

What has been your biggest lesson learned?

I have learned that you can’t control everything and that you will make mistakes along the way and that’s okay. I have also learned that being 100% genuine and authentic to your message and work is absolutely essential to success.

What have been (or still are) your biggest fears and challenges, and how do you overcome them?

My biggest challenge is to remember that my healing regime, how I live my life and what I put into and onto my body, is more important than anything else. I have a desire to serve which can sometimes mean I make other things (like work) more important than they are. My other challenge is being more selfish and putting myself before others which I can sometimes find hard.

What do you believe is the secret of your success?

Being real, being myself and being honest about where I am with my healing journey has helped people to relate to me and feel motivated by the information, recipes and wisdom that I love to share.

What 3 tips would you offer ambitious women reading this?

Make a decision – get really clear about what you want and why

Take consistent action on a daily basis

Believe in yourself and trust that the Universe has got your back.

What book has most inspired you?

Where to start?! There are so many! The two books that completely changed my course of direction were Louise Hay’s You Can Heal Your Life and Brandon Bays’ The Journey which both opened my mind to the possibility of self-healing and the concept of mind-body connection.

You can connect with Polly on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. To visit Polly’s website and find out about her books, click here.

If you were to take Polly’s advice and make a decision today, what do you want and why? I’d love for you to share with us in the Comments below.


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The Wealth Files: Two money fundamentals every female entrepreneur should remember

07 10 2013

How do you feel when someone asks your fee or the price of your product? Awkward? Embarrassed? Maybe even a bit guilty?  What if you were to double your fee/price?  Now, how do you feel?

I asked you recently to put a number on your ‘money ceiling’.  Turn to a clean page in your notebook and right down your desired digits now (without currency symbol).  Say it out loud.  How does that feel?  Now ask what it is going to take to get you to that goal?  What do you need to be charging  from today to get there?  

The chances are you know, deep down, that you’re under-charging so what is holding you back from charging what you’re worth?  

“I’m not sure how to…”

“I don’t want to lose my customers…”

“I don’t have as much experience/feel as qualified as my competitors…”

Or simply, you’re missing the confidence to really put a value on yourself.  I say this with kindness because I have been (and still am) that girl.  Money has always been an awkward necessity for me.  And asking for money, toe-curling.  BUT, I’m working on it…. and want to remind you of these money basics that may give you the same ‘lightbulb moment’ they gave me.

– Money is a symbol.  It is us that attach the meaning to it.  To one person it may be a joyful thing that creates freedom, to another it may be “the root of all evil”.  What is it to you?  Something clicked with me when I was reminded that money is simply a means of exchange, a transaction.  Instead of me exchanging two chickens for that book on my Amazon wish list, I use coins/notes/plastic .. or Paypal!  Yes this might be obvious but seeing it as a tool changed my perspective.

– Your customers decide what is a fair swap.  If I asked which has more value, a gold bar or a loaf of bread, I imagine you’d go for gold.  But, what if you were starving, couldn’t wait and your immediate need was to feed yourself and your family – you may think differently.  Start to think about what need you’re solving for your customer – your ideal customers will see the worth in the solution you offer and will pay you what they believe it’s worth in exchange.  Don’t charge based on what you need, charge based on the value you offer in return.  

What is/are your customers biggest worries or needs? What solution do you offer? What value can be placed on that solution? Tell us what need you solve in the Comments below…

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Behind the scenes with Joy LaForme

07 09 2013

They say art comes in many forms.  For Joy Laforme, schooled in art and design, her artistic talents span across websites, branding, stationery and textiles.  I recently discovered her Illustration Daily project and immediately loved her style.  Joy is kindly taking a rare ‘time out’ to share a peek behind the scenes of her business…

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What is your title/position?

Designer & Illustrator

Tell me a bit about your business: 

I’m a freelance designer and illustrator, and soon-to-be shop owner. A lot of my business is a catch-all for anything design and illustration related! I’ve worked with stationery and print clients, web clients, and textile clients. It’s both stressful and rewarding at the same time.

Describe your typical day/week schedule. 

My schedule is flexible, which I love – but I’m definitely a workaholic! I usually have to force myself to take breaks. I do my best work in the morning, so sometimes you’ll find me up before the sun. I’ll often take a longer break in the afternoon, to go find new inspiration for a project I’m working on.

How do you plan and organize your time?  What are your biggest challenges with this?  What tips can you offer? 

This wasn’t always easy for me! I’ve learned to make to do lists based on priorities, client urgencies, etc. I think that is the tip I can best offer to others – prioritise! Sometimes the things that are stressing me out the most, I will prioritise the highest. It helps me get stress and cloudiness out of the way so I can focus on the good parts of my business.

Joy LaForme illustrations

What are your essential office tools? 

What aren’t my essential office tools?! My desk is swimming in paper, paints, pens, ink, and sketchbooks. I also enjoying having music play while I work.

Are there any websites or apps that you’d recommend to other entrepreneurial women?

I invested in an invoicing tool called Pancake about a year ago and I would be lost without it! It helps me manage my projects, clients, and all of their milestones.

Describe your workspace and how it integrates with your working style.  How does it motivate/focus your work?

I have my textiles and illustrations all over the wall in front of my desk, along with my favorite books and sketchpads. It helps me see my work and the things that most inspire me, right in front of me. I’m also a very, very, organised person. I like to keep things as neat as possible in between projects or it clouds my thought process. Mess around me reflects itself in my work.

What book has most inspired you?

Max Lucado’s Fearless has inspired me so much. For almost three years I toyed with the idea of starting my own business, but looked for full-time work on the side. It was never something I totally invested in, because I was afraid of failing. (Who isn’t?!) I’ve learned over the past few years not to be afraid of failure but to look at moments where you didn’t perform how you wanted as teachable experiences to learn from. (Click to tweet it)

What’s your typical working lunch? 

My favorite is a big plate of vegetables and blue chips, with hummus. It’s a snack-type of meal that I can eat and keep working if I’m working through lunch.

And how do you switch off once the working day is done? 

This is a tough one because I don’t often take my own advice. I try to not look at my email, which is really difficult, especially if I see clients are emailing me. But I try to keep my work during my working hours, so I can still do the things I love to do that have nothing to do with my job.

What makes your life sparkle?

My family. I wouldn’t have any of the success I have had without them. They are so supportive and loving. They make each day a great day.

See more of Joy’s work, including the gorgeous illustrations above, here

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Tools of the trade: Daily planner to download

07 08 2013

It’s fair to say I was more than a little distracted last night as I planned my week (*tried to*) with the excitement of the Wimbledon Men’s Final in the background.  

A few people have asked how I plan my time, so I thought I’d share … along with a daily planner which is free to download.

– I have one big ‘master’ to-do list on Todoist.  This is the place where I pool everything that needs to get done – ideas and inspiration for future work projects, plans for our home, activities and creative play with my baby, and on it goes.  Each mini ‘task’ sits within a project folder online.  

– Each task gets a rough deadline.  These are never set in stone but, for me, it helps to put a date on the ones that are immoveable and immediate, and ‘file away’ those that are longer-term plans and ideas.  As I mentioned before, Todoist is great in that it syncs with Google Calendar.

– Ahead of each week, I use Todoist and Google Calendar to look at tasks for that week.  I then start to plot these on my daily planner, one for each day of the week.  I try to allot time to things if I can… I tend to over-estimate what I can get done so this helps me to be a bit more realistic!

Top tip: When you look at your week’s tasks, before you plot them onto your daily planner, it’s worth checking in to see if they’re actions that are a good use of your time.  Get in the habit of asking will this get me closer to my goal of…?  

Do you have any planning tips you’d like to share.  I’d love to hear from you in the Comments below x

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