Category Archives: Uncategorized

Planning for success in 2017


We’re just a couple weeks shy of the end of 2016. Even if the year wasn’t everything you imagined it would be; the New Year brings with it the opportunity for a fresh start. The question is: what are you going to do with yours?

If you didn’t accomplish everything you wanted to this year, it may be about more than just poor planning. Just like a house built on an unstable foundation won’t stay standing, we need to make sure that we have a solid mindset before pursuing our goals. If you pursue 2017 goals with 2016’s mindset, don’t be surprised when you get similar results!

Consider the beliefs or thoughts that held you back from doing things you knew were going to help your business. What would you need to do to shift them so that you can take those leaps of faith in the upcoming year? Whether it’s hiring a coach, attending a workshop or reading a book, there are many ways to work on your limiting beliefs.

Sometimes we’re not conscious of the beliefs that are holding us back because we’ve believed them for a very long time. Many of the limiting beliefs that we have were passed on to us by well-meaning family and friends. They too are unconscious of the fact that what they’ve shared with us causes limitations. It’s only when we start to question whether or not our beliefs truly serve us that we can identify the ones that need shifting.

If we don’t work on our mindset, we will struggle with the plan. If you are limited in your belief about what’s possible, it will undoubtedly affect the plans you put in place. Maybe you’re playing small when it comes to your goals because you don’t think you’re capable of achieving the amazing things you really want for your life. Whatever’s holding you back, know that it doesn’t have to be your reality. I truly believe that where there’s a will, there is always a way!

What are you going to do differently in 2017? What beliefs do you need to shift in order to make those changes happen? Who or where can you go to for the help you need so that you don’t sabotage your success and you can really make the New Year your best year yet? Whatever it is you need to do, write it down, give yourself a deadline and take action to make it happen!

If you’d like help with identifying your limiting beliefs so that you can pursue your 2017 goals with a mindset for success, book a complimentary, no-obligation 30 minute Clarity Session with me today!

Sandra Dawes is a certified life coach specializing in helping women who feel unfulfilled with their 9-5 follow their dreams and pursue their passions. She holds an Honours BA, an MBA as well as a certificate in Dispute Resolution. She has completed her first book,Embrace Your Destiny: 12 Steps to Living the Life You Deserve!


Want to plan your 2017? Enhance your planning with a Leonie Dawson Workbook


Tagged , , , , , , ,

How to Take a Vacation From Your Marketing


As a business owner, the most important thing you can do for yourself is take a break. It also happens to be the hardest thing to do if you are trying to run your business because the moment you go silent on the marketing front you will lose audience interest.

With the holidays right around the corner, it is the perfect time to take a breather from 24/7 entrepreneur brain. Taking both a physical and a mental break from your business (even if it’s a staycation) will help you avoid burn out.

If you’re looking to take some time off this holiday season, don’t let your marketing efforts suffer. Here are a few things to consider to keep that momentum going throughout your time away.

  1. Blog early: You should have a regular posting schedule for your blogs so your audience can come to expect content at a certain time. Keep that schedule going while you are away by writing your blogs ahead of time. Most blogging platforms will allow you to schedule each blog to go live at a specific day or time.
  2. Automation is your best friend: This requires a bit of planning, but if you work ahead of time, you can schedule content to go out while you are away. Work with a program like Hootsuite, Buffer, Mailchimp, etc. Try to stay away from the bots that automatically like and comment on posts as those can seem too contrived.
  3. Delegate tasks: If you already have a team in place, make sure you put someone in charge while you are away. Empower them to make decisions without you, but let them know that you are available for emergencies. If you are a solopreneur, hire someone you trust to look after things while you are gone. Start working with them at least a few weeks in advance so they are fully comfortable while you are away.
  4. Prioritize tasks: Not everything has to be done right now. Have a look through your to do list and rank everything by due dates. If there are things that need to get done before you leave, then get them done. If you have tasks with no due date or ones with later due dates, leave those to get done when you get back.

After taking some time for yourself, you will find that you return more refreshed, which usually leads to more energy to put into your business. Taking time away from your business will allow you to approach your business from a new perspective. It will make you a better business owner – and your marketing strategy doesn’t have to suffer.

Candace Huntly is the Founder and Principal at SongBird Marketing Communications, an award-winning agency working to take organizational and individual brands to the next level. With a passion for all things related to creativity and strategy, she specializes in business intelligence, marketing & branding, content strategy & development, media & influencer relations, and social media. Basically, if you need to put your brand, product, or cause in the public eye, she will find a way to do it, while making the approach unique to you.

Connect with Candace


Get organized for 2017


Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Judene McCalla: Canadian Small Business Woman of the Month of May 2016


As a graduate of the University of Windsor, I received my Bachelor’s degree in Criminology. Although my career extends to social science, my desire to launch my own business began after I designed my friend’s invitations and accessories for her wedding in 2005.

Eventually, I started to get request from other friends and relatives, to design invitation for their events.

Each item I create is custom designed and handmade from start to finish. A great man once said, “The proof of value is where you invest your time.” I am as passionate about your celebration as you are.


Whether you are looking for invitations for an elegant wedding, graduation, birthday, corporate events, engagements or wedding announcements, baby’s arrival, or relocating, I will create a package reflects your style, personality and budget.


Our Q & A with Judene:

*What inspires you?
I am inspired by my surroundings, anything can beautiful and can inspire me from shapes to colours and even smells.
I love reading; it gives me a chance to escape into other worlds.  I’m also inspired by the great outdoors.  I love documenting nature through my passion for photography.  And of course, you may expect that as an invitation designer, I am inspired by topography: I have not yet met a font that I do not want to own!
*As a small business owner, what achievements make you most proud?
I am very proud to be able to help my clients begin their events with fun, stylish custom invitations. I am the founder and principal designer of a successful award-winning invitation studio specializing in delightfully beautiful, customized, handmade designs. For the last three years, we have been voted “Most Popular Invitation Designer, Worldwide” by Wedding Industry Expert Awards.   
*What advice would you give to other aspiring small business owners?

I have learned so much in this journey of owning my business and I have three pieces of advice for aspiring small business owners. One, don’t expect to start making a profit overnight. It’s not a sprint, it’s a marathon. Invest in your business and you will see results. Two, clearly define your goals so you can measure your progress. And third, love what you do, and enjoy all of your accomplishments.

Finally, In this day and age of social media, do not compare your achievement anyone else, you are unique and different, celebrate you! 

*What new things can we look forward to from your business in the upcoming year?
We are constantly thinking outside the box and creating new designs. In September we will be introducing our new invitation collection. The collection includes box invitations and lasercut designs. Glitter is a huge trend in the wedding industry right now so we will be showcasing how couples can incorporate the shine and pizzazz into their wedding day.
Connect with Judene: Website, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter

Virginia Presseault: Canadian Small Business Woman of the Month of April 2016


Virginia Presseault is a Life and Wellness Coach with her own private practice. She has been enthusiastically coaching people for years. She found her calling after working in the mental health field for 4 years, herself having suffered from anxiety and depression since her early teens.  As far back as she could remember she was on a quest to find healing techniques to help her feel a sense of wholeness again. She fervently believes in championing her clients to create and live their authentic lives.

She is a passionate storyteller and humorist who believes we all have a story to tell and that laughter is the best medicine. Her first book, “Mother Load” is a humorous and lighthearted story about a career woman with three dogs, two cats, a bag of crazy patients, a mystery to solve, and an overbearing Macedonian mother, with all of it leading to a series of amusing adventures and mishaps.

“Our Willingness to Invite Change: An Unconventional Approach to Coaching through Example, Reflection and Storytelling” is a compilation of the knowledge she acquired during her long journey to come to terms with and understand her anxiety and depression. Through a great deal of self-analysis, numerous insights came to light. When you learn, you teach and inspire others. Her love of storytelling helped her to convey her message with stories that capture the imagination and bring understanding in a unique way.


Our Q & A with Virginia

What Inspires You?

Warriors inspire me. The unsung heroes who stand up for truth and justice and devote their lives to elevating human consciousness through their tireless work each and every single day. Those that stand up for all sentient beings, and demand that compassion and fairness be our guide.

As a small business owner, what achievements make you most proud?

Through all the struggles of my life, I have remained open-hearted and compassionate and that I strive to impart the gifts that I gained to be of service to others. To be given the opportunity to share what I have learned and to possibly inspire others and assist them in my small way so they too can find their power within and hopefully from there be able to take that new awareness and share it with others.

What advice would you give to other aspiring small business owners?

Find a mentor, a support system that will help you to achieve all you seek. Having your own business can be a road fraught with challenges sometimes, so find those people that will uplift you, encourage you when you falter. I firmly believe in the power of someone standing behind, beside or with us as we journey to create our dreams.

What new things can we look forward to from your business in the upcoming year?

I would like to promote my book and write a sequel to “Mother Load.” I am also interested in setting up a center to teach and inspire.


For more about Virginia visit her website

%d bloggers like this: