We’re featuring COVID Survival Stories of businesses in our Fiore3 Mentor Group that have overcome, pivoted, and hung on for dear life during the pandemic.
This is a guest blog from a member of our Fiore3 Mentor Group Petra Buric.
Let me start with a short trip into the past. The year 2011 represented a significant change for me as I moved from my former home country into Switzerland. Before that, my life looked like I was simply following a path someone decided for me, and it was pretty similar to what my parents did: find a job with an income to get by barely, try paying off the debts, no savings, maybe a holiday or two per year not too far away… absolute mediocrity. I didn’t particularly like it, but I also had no idea how to get out of it. I was born into this way of living, and I simply accepted it. Up and then, I’d see beautiful people having fabulous lives, more fulfilled, more abundant, and happier. How was it possible for them? It can’t be all fake, can it? There was a missing link that I wanted to understand. With the awareness I have now, I know that I was mentally too lazy to answer that puzzle. My mental comfort zone had a full grip on me, and I didn’t understand that.
The summer of 2011 brought my move to Switzerland, a cultural shock to me – learning a new language, finding a home, and finding a job. A year later, I got married. But after these changes settled, the rut came back. Again, the feeling that I’m stuck with this. I need to change something, but I don’t know what. The mentor that I have now, often says: “Change is inevitable, but personal growth is a choice.” I didn’t understand that growth only happens if I embrace change, anticipate it, actually cause it on purpose. And if I don’t do that, changes will simply roll over me and crush me.
The first small growth happened in 2014 when I decided to get myself to the next level. I figured out that if I improve my education, I’ll probably get a better job with more income. Since I already had a university degree, I thought the next logical step was a master. I went to a business school fair full of hope, but it turned out that “You’re not a business owner. Or a manager. Or a leader. You haven’t studied economics. Or business. You have no clue.” All I heard was, you’re not good enough. I left disappointed. Days later, a recruiter from a business school in London, UK, contacted me saying my LinkedIn profile was exciting and that I should start the application process. I had no idea what it meant, but I was intrigued! So, I jumped in! Among math and statistics tests and submitting piles of documents, it never occurred to me that I would be admitted. The news came unexpectedly! The recruiter called me in person and congratulated me on being approved to join the Executive Master of Business Administration program. Wow! Me! Is this true? After the call, I jumped for 2 minutes around the room for excitement! Then I crushed on my bed – I realized I have to pay the tuition! How the hell am I going to make it? At that time, it was nearly 70k USD for two years’ program, which was more than my yearly salary! And on top, there would be travel, accommodation, and food, not to mention the rent, all the bills at home that were not going away. I had to fly over from Switzerland to London, one weekend every month for the school, while still working full time. For the next two years! I managed without a bank loan, but I paid with all my holidays, spare time, and savings, not buying anything that was not strictly necessary. For two years, I lived like a total hermit. Again, the thoughts of “barely getting by” were haunting me. I didn’t want that! I wanted freedom! Is it even possible for me to have ALL THAT I WANT, without being forced to sacrifice so much?
I remember during the last day of school, one of the professors said: “Now go find yourself a mentor.” And I thought: “I just finished this school, why would I need one?” I thought I was now well equipped to go bravely into the corporate world, find a managerial position, advance my career, earn thousands more each year, and finally afford more. I was such a naïve girl! Of course, it didn’t happen. My work colleagues congratulated me, and that was it. I expected a new contract and position like immediately, but nothing changed. I didn’t understand.
In the meantime, my husband started a personal and professional development program in late 2016 with the person who is now my mentor as well – this is Bob Proctor. I didn’t want to know anything about it at that time! I thought it was just a lovely bunch of “mindfulness and motivation” nonsense, no real stuff. I couldn’t be more wrong! Three weeks from starting, my hubby’s professional environment, team, and opportunities changed so much that I became curious. What is this thing so powerful and impactful? I had to know! This seemed to be precisely what I was looking for! So, I changed my mind and asked to be part of it.
What a ride I had started! The first topic I was confronted with was setting my goals. What? What are we talking about? Life goals? All I knew were goals set by your line manager. How much do I want to earn? Excuse me? Doesn’t the company dictate my salary? I receive what’s in the contract, right? Now I was learning that my salary is not coming FROM my employer, but THROUGH my employer, and I’m attracting the amount I THINK AND BELIEVE I’m worthy of, from the Universe (or God). Woooow! Wait a sec! I can decide if I want a promotion? Higher salary? Really? OK, let me test this! Guess what, a month and a half later I got it! I was ecstatic! I wanted more! I wanted more successful tests! So, I decided I want a bigger home with more perks. Got it. And I also wanted another promotion, just to test. Got it! Two advancements in two years! I wanted to fly business class, so I worked on that manifestation. Got it six times in a row on a long-haul flight! I forgot how the economy class looks… all of a sudden, I realized I was now LIVING the lifestyle that I was TRYING to create all my life before! What was I doing differently? I was following exactly what my mentor told me to do through his program! SHIFT YOUR PARADIGM! There were, of course, also some lows. Whenever I’d leave that path, my results would drift, my life would become challenging, my finances would get low. I understood that I needed to be persistent and change my habits, mindset, and belief on purpose and continuously.
My real significant change, the decisive one that has been responsible for all my subsequent results and real success, including during the Covid-19 period, came when I truly embraced the idea of being a coach and mentor. I had to stop hiding, stop being afraid, stop minimizing myself; I had to make this mission my own, go full out and start helping people in a professional business-like way. This was a shock to me. I had to change many paradigms, old habits, limiting beliefs, and my self-image. I could have never done it without my mentor Bob Proctor. The decision brought the realization that I want so much more. I wanted to be more, to do more, to own more, to help more, to show up more, to be genuine, authentic, real unapologetic me, inspiring woman leader that people decide to follow willingly, not because they are forced to. I wanted to guide others to go through the same transformation as I started for myself.
Then came the test of my persistence. Covid-19. All of a sudden, everything was turned upside down. Everyone in my environment, like probably in yours, kept repeating on and on: “This is a tough challenge, unprecedented crazy times, economic decline, jobs cut, no income, no future. Panic and crisis!” I agree that for many people, this might have been the reality, but I have learned from my mentor that precisely in these situations, we have to think about and believe in what we WANT and not give energy to what we don’t. Therefore, even if I saw these difficulties, I didn’t allow myself to be emotionally involved in this negativity. I knew that if ever, this was the time that people needed the most help with their mindset, their change of habitual way of thinking, and gaining absolute clarity and faith in their goals! I persisted in believing in myself and acting on my goal while having support from my mentor, courage from my accountability partner, and cheering from my professional group.
Fast-forward to today, it’s July 2020, almost four months into the Covid-19 lock-down. The personal transformation I have been working on, my mindset, my leadership, my perception of myself and my worth, finally showed in a tangible result that I love, and I have been repeating and scaling up ever since then. April and May 2020 represent my best months ever in terms of income in my entire life. Through all my professional activities combined, I earned 40k US dollars, which is the tangible, financial aspect of my goals. In my past, I would need to work for this amount for the entire three years! The wisdom, the awareness, and learnings, and then the satisfaction of what results from my clients are also getting through my guidance, is priceless.
I know that this is just the start, and I’m just scratching the surface. I will never stop helping people get what they want, and I want YOU to get it all! You might think that this is only possible for others, and it cannot apply to you. I want you to understand that you as well have this same potential that I discovered in myself! My best piece of advice to you, when it comes to harnessing your mind’s power, is the same that I got from my business schoolteacher – get yourself a mentor, a coach Now I understand why. Coaches and mentors help you see your potential and your blind spots and keep you accountable with your committed decision. There is no magic wand. You still have to invest time and money and do the work. But your search for results, your investments, your time, effort, energy, and work will be drastically reduced, and you will get there so much easier and quicker.
If you’ve never worked with a coach before, here’s a start for you, just contact me to have a simple conversation, to start the change, to ignite that desire in you to be more, have more and achieve more.
So you will be able to repeat after me, with conviction and enthusiasm: “My present is amazing, and my future is glorious! And I’m so happy and grateful now that I am the creator of my fabulous life!”
Petra is a life coach and business consultant at Empowered Life. She has graciously opened the availability of her mentorship and coaching services to our readers in an effort to help make your dreams a TANGIBLE reality during and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic. You can reach her directly at email@example.com, and don’t forget to reference that you found her through the Fiore3 COVID Survival Series!
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