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If you’re an introvert like me, and especially an introverted entrepreneur, I’m sure you’re aware that this journey feels like a pretty solitary mission at times. It’s made worse by the fact that when you start to make money and you grow, your old friends will tell you you’ve changed and you don’t align with your values. Trying to maintain these “friendships” can be so exhausting.

Even if you are okay with going it alone, I’m here to tell you that a little companionship can go a long way. I’m sharing three ways that will not only help you find it but have you find like-minded people who you can grow with and who actually push you to be the best you can possibly be.

Join me this week and discover the importance of having people around you that are going through the same thing you are. It can be hard if you’ve got kids or you just can’t be bothered to put up with other people’s bullshit, but listen in, because making professional friends in your industry will change your life and business forever.

We’ve got some unbelievable guests coming on the show over the next few months, so in order to help us reach more people, please share this podcast with your tribe and leave us a review on iTunes to give us more visibility.

What You’ll Learn from this Episode:

  • Why you shouldn’t feel like you have to tend to a relationship to show that you care.
  • How my entrepreneurship journey started out without much genuine socializing.
  • What gave me some relief from the solitude of starting a business.
  • Why you need a tribe, even if you’re happy as a homebody.
  • The beauty of embracing your “paid relationships.”
  • 3 places you can find likeminded people to make this journey a little less lonely.

Listen to the Full Episode:

Featured on the Show:

Full Episode Transcript:

Want to have it all? Well, the best day to get started is TODAY. Welcome to Love Your Living, a podcast for ambitious women who want to take their life and business to a WHOLE new level of success. I’m Brooke Keeling, multiple six-figure business owner, passionate entrepreneur and your host.

Welcome to another episode of the Love Your Living podcast…

Hello everyone, and welcome to the Love Your Living podcast. I am Brooke Keeling and delighted to be here with all of you lovelies today. I hope you all are having an incredible week and I am so thankful that you’re here and you’re joining me on today’s episode.

This one is for all my entrepreneurs out there, or even all of my introverts, because I think you can also apply this to that life as well, which I’m both, so it should be a real fun topic and I’m excited to talk about it with you today. And, if you have not guessed it, it’s all about entrepreneurship, how it can be lonely – it can be really lonely for all of us entrepreneurs out there – and also some ideas on how you can change that, how I’ve changed that.

Now, here’s the thing; I’m an introvert. It’s probably a surprise to you, even if you know me, because I’m a very eccentric introvert, I guess, and I’m in the sales world. And so, I have no problem talking and I connect with people really, really well. However, if it was my choice, almost always of sweatpants and staying in my house or going to a networking event, I’m down with the sweatpants.

And also, when I’m done with a full day of work, I don’t really find much joy in socializing, like, doing weekly dinners with people and all of that. Like, I’m usually spent. I think – someone told me this once about introverts – and this is not our topic today, but I find it interesting, so I’ll share it with all of you and then we’ll get back onto topic.

Someone told me once, one of the ways you can tell if you’re an introvert is if you’re talking to someone, if you are constantly thinking about what you’re going to say next. And so, maybe you listen to someone and that’s fine, but in the back of your mind, you’re always thinking, you’re strategizing on where the conversation is going to go and what you’re going to say next in reaction to it. And so you’re almost, like, in your head while you’re having these conversations, which can be incredibly exhausting, which is why you need to take some time away and not always be around people.

So, anyways, I digress. And I want to talk about how life can get really lonely as an entrepreneur, especially for a lot of us that have really big goals and are very driven to meet those goals. Now, I’ve always said, like, I don’t need a big group of friends. I like a lot of people. I don’t feel like I need to – well actually, I have to say that there has been stress in my life previously with feeling like I need to tend to certain relationships, like I need to be a better friend or I need to go to this to show that I care or I need to constantly be in communication or whatever.

I think you can find really great ways at showing that you care about people without having it be taxing or being something that you don’t want to do, because that’s not really fun. You want to be able to hang out with people when you want to, but not feel the stress of, like, you need to constantly worry about if they’re okay or if they need to see you or hang out. Like, that’s not really my thing.

But in business, especially, I am so laser focused on my goals. And when I first started out in my real estate business, I didn’t have a baby. And also, my husband worked. Of course my husband worked, right, but my husband was traveling at the time, and so almost every single week, he was out of town Monday through Thursday.

And so this was really great for me. Hopefully he’s not listening. I’m just joking. He knew this. It was a big transition for us when he was no longer traveling anymore. Of course, I missed him and whatnot, but I was never dependent on needing to have him there for socializing or to do things with me or to care for me or whatever. I’m totally independent when it comes to that.

I also didn’t have a baby. I had two little dogs that, you know, they’re happy if I just work at my desk. Like, they just chill by my feet. But other than that, I was just working all of the time. And so I didn’t have business hours, and that didn’t make me as efficient as I could have been, because rather than being like, okay I have to have this task done by this time or I need to be checked out by 4pm when my nanny’s done, it was like, oh I can send these emails at nine o’clock tonight.

And that was my life for a really long time. And when it came to people asking me if I wanted to go and get a drink or if I want to meet for dinner or if I want to do this that or whatever, 99.9% of the time, I absolutely always found a reason out of it. And that reason or excuse was always work.

Now, I could have gotten that work done well before that timeframe, but it just wasn’t something that is really that important to me in my life. I have a very close circle of friends and honestly, a lot of my friends are not within the area that I live. And so, I don’t have a lot of really, really close girlfriends right in the city that I live in. And I’m okay with that.

I’m okay with that now. I used to think I need to have more friends or – not saying that I don’t have friends or I don’t like people, that’s not that case at all. There are so many people that I really love that I consider friends, but I’m saying, like, my girls that we throw back a few bottles of wine and get crazy, I don’t necessarily have that where I’m at in my life right now win the current city that I’m in. So, a lot of times, I travel to see my friends or I have them in my mastermind groups, or other ways to communicate and show up and do things with them.

So, so much of my life and so much of so many entrepreneurs’ lives, especially when we’re working on big things, which almost always, right – like we set a goal and then we achieve it and then we set another one. I’ve told my team this so many times. I’m like, when we get more settled, when we don’t have all of these things going on – and just recently, in my own business, I’m like, look, this is a realization that this shit is never going to stop.

It’s always going to be crazy. We are always going to have 100 sticks in the fire, whatever that phrase is. It’s never going to get just, you know, boring around here where we don’t know what to do or we don’t have a bazillion things going on, because when we get a little comfortable, we launch a new business. And that’s the reality. We find something else to add or something else to implement or a new whatever to do. And I find that fun and exciting.

I didn’t always have a team either, and so, when I first started, it was just me. It was just me in my head all day long. That was it.  I had maybe one friend that was in the same business as me and we would talk shop, but that was about it.

And then, I started to really get into coaching. And this was great because I had someone to talk to about the things that I was most passionate about, that understood me and cared and was on that same wavelength, you know, within each week or every other week. I had a network of people that I started really connecting with. And that was really cool to me.

And I found a lot of connection there and people that were likeminded, which made me feel like I wasn’t as alone anymore. But still, you go away to a conference, you go away and you go to a retreat or something, you make these incredible connections, and then all of a sudden you come back to your life and it’s all grinding it out again.

Now, my life is a little bit different now, and it’s a little bit different in such an incredible way. But I now have a family. I have a baby. And so much of my time, my gosh, my life has changed, my schedule has changed. If you would have told me six years ago that I could only work from 7am to 4pm, I would be like, you’re fucking nuts, there’s no way that’s going to happen or that I didn’t work from sunup until sundown on a weekend seven days a week, I would think that you were bat-shit crazy.

Like, I wouldn’t have believed you, and now, the gifts that my daughter had brought into my life, and also just the women that have come into my life, and men that have come into my life, that have shown me a smarter way of doing business and scaling my business and growing have been absolutely life-changing. So, I can be super focused on my business during business hours, and sometimes, I still work at night or I have to take calls or have late evenings. It’s part of the world. It’s part of entrepreneurship.

However, I have a lot more boundaries there and I also really enjoy my time off. I enjoy being a mom so much and I think that this is a huge ah-ha for any moms that are listening in, whether you’re a stay at home mom or you’re in business or you’re a working mom, you own your business, whatever it may be. I am a better mom because I work. I am doing things that fill me up so creatively and that test me, that allow me to grow as a human being and as a person that, when I’m done with my work, I’m so fulfilled.

Even on the shittiest days, like, I can have the crappiest day at work, I can be so stressed out about certain things, but most of the time, I can check out because I have this undivided attention to my work and I’m so efficient in it now that when it’s time to turn to my baby, I can see everything that I’m grateful for in my life and I can see that silver lining, and it allows me to get out of my business, which is so powerful to have an outlet to have something else to focus on to just switch your mind up. And so, it gives my mind a little bit of a break versus just being in business all of the time.

This has literally been a game-changer and I’m not saying that you have to go and have a child in order to change your life. I’m not saying that at all. Some people are perfectly happy without having children and you can implement the same things. It’s just I came to a point where I had to figure it out because my life was changing very significantly and it was something that wasn’t a choice. It was there and I needed to figure it out, and beautiful things came from it.

Again, I have an incredible husband and I have a baby to tend to, so my socializing and my social life is not what many maybe would like. I don’t know. I absolutely love it. I love my life. And it’s filled with fur babies and all of that, you know, I’m very much a homebody and I’m cool with that. But I still do feel like we need a tribe.

We need to be able to go to someone and chat about things. For me, that outlet has been – so, masterminds and coaching, that’s one huge one, And this is another topic that came up that made me giggle one time, because it’s so true for me. and it wasn’t a reality until recently, but I have found so many incredible friendships that have escalated my life, my vision for my life, my dreams, my aspirations, my love, like everything, and they’re through people who I have hired to help me in my life.

And so, it’s really funny because this is coming from someone who is also very much an introvert, also very serious about business, and she said, “I like my paid friends more than I like my non-paid friends.” And I think that is, like, absolutely incredible because I’ve found so many incredible relationships through the things that I have invested a lot of money in.

And at first, when I started out like coaching or I started out going to different events, I was like blinders on, you guys, all business all of the time. I didn’t want to talk to anybody. I didn’t want to meet anybody. I would go to the seminars and the sessions and I would go straight back to my hotel room and I would study the course work, I would highlight it, I would do the homework, I would put plans in place. I meant business.

I was making shit happen in my life and I needed to get serious. But then, I don’t know what changed and shifted. I truly don’t know what changed and shifted, but if that sounds like you, the next time you’re in that type of a situation, I want you to be open to meeting people because, here’s the thing, I used to just want the content, just want the tools, just want the one on one coach or help to figure out my life and move my business forward.

And it was all business all the time. But when I allowed that guard to come down, something incredible happened and I got more out of the relationships and connections that I made within those investments than I did in the actual coursework itself, always. I look back at that now and it’s pretty incredible.

I, myself, was in a high-end mastermind this last year and I thought to myself, wow, this is a huge investment. And I don’t know that a mastermind is for me because there’s a lot of chitter-chatter going on. I just want to work with someone one on one that’s going to coach me and be strategic and work on my business with me, and I really like that dynamic more than masterminds.

And I’ve had this thought with almost all of these events and masterminds that I have been in in the past. But it literally hit me like a brick. And I looked back at all of the other things I’ve invested in and I realized that some of my best friends, some of the people that I absolutely love and adore, they’ve come from me investing hundreds and thousands of dollars into different courses, into different retreats, into different coaching programs.

And so, one of the ways, if you are a lonely entrepreneur or if you’re feeling like maybe you want more connection in your life – last year, at one point in my vision board, I actually put a picture of people, like, looking like they were friends on my board, because it was an awakening to me that I had outgrown a lot of my old friendships. Not because I don’t love them anymore, but just because I was at a different place in my life and I needed more people that I could do me with at my phase in my life that understood it, that understood where I’m at and what I want because they want the same things.

That was one of my goals. I wanted to start being open to that. And what miraculously happened is, one, I have incredible connections that I’ve made through past groups that I’ve been in that have been business oriented. So if you’re trying to find people that are likeminded, hello, invest in something, you’re likely going to get some friendships out of it, people that you can connect with, talk about business.

Maybe you pay for a friendship, but you’re paying for it up front and you’re making lasting relationships in your life and it is worth every single cent, every single penny of an investment. Now, the mastermind that I’m running right now is a group of women that I personally invited to come together. And they’re all women from different business backgrounds that have very audacious goals that all have a lot of the same insecurities.

And it’s just incredible when you can start to connect with likeminded people, and we’re just getting started, but oftentimes, when you finish a program like this or a group like this where you’ve been together for six months or a lot of different programs or masterminds or whatever, they last 12 months, you know so much about people. You go through so much with them and you have a lifetime relationship. It’s really, really incredible.

I even had this – I went on a retreat last year as well and that was the first time that I had ever done anything like that. I’m not big in traveling with groups because I usually like my own itinerary and I just want to be alone – again, that introvert piece of the puzzle. But I was open to going to this. And at first, I found myself, like the first day, judging everyone. Like, oh that person’s a bitch because they’re really skinny and pretty and from Florida and they’re tan and they’re perfect. I literally had that thought.

Like, hello, you know better than this. At the end of it, there’s people all over the world, all over the country that we spent one week together and I feel like I know their life’s story, and I can’t wait to go and visit them and see them again. It’s so powerful, you guys.

So thin about that, if you feel like you’re missing some connection, one of the ways that you can find it is by joining a paid mastermind or going on a retreat or finding a group that maybe you do pay for your friends, but that is okay because they’re lifetime relationships that you’re building.

Now, one of the other ways, if you’re missing a bit of connection – and this can go also for people that are not right local within your area – is being able to engage with others and get on calls or get on a Skype, or you know, Facetime someone, do something like that.

This is not one of my favorites. I’m not even going to try to pretend that it is. I hate talking to people on the phone. I despise it. And my grandparents hate me for it, and you know what, I am clearing that shit, I’m okay with it. and I used to have so much resentment around it because I feel like they don’t think that I love them or I’m not being a good granddaughter or I’m not in contact with them enough.

But the reality of it is, I don’t have time to sit on the phone for 30, 45 minutes just chit-chatting. And, you know what, I can’t even say that. I do have the time. If I wanted to do it, I do have the time. I hate being on the phone. I hate it. It’s not something that I love. I don’t like picking up the phone and calling someone. I barely do it with my mom.

I do it every once in a while so that she can Facetime my daughter and we can chat, but outside of that, I am not a big phone person and it’s just not for me. But if you are someone – I know many, many people that literally – there’s one of my team members, I think it’s so funny, because she has a best friend that’s he talks to all of the time. And her friend was on vacation and she goes, “Oh my gosh, I realized on day four like how much I actually talk to my friend. I haven’t talked to her. And usually, any time I get into the car, I just call her number.” And I’m like, oh my god, I would die.

That’s not me, but this is the way that she’s able to connect with her friend. And it’s also someone that is a very, very hard worker that is going through the growth phases of outgrowing relationships and needing to have that type of connection in their life and their friend is not in the same city. And so, how they’re able to connect is through a phone conversation and being able to talk to each other every day. And that’s what really, really works for them.

So just know that you don’t always have to be in the same state and the same city to be able to find deep connections with people. And in fact, one of the quotes that Tony Robbins teaches and that he lives by that I really took into my own life that I love, he says that, “If you don’t have to fly to see your friends, you’re not thinking big enough yet.”

And I think that’s really, really powerful because the more we grow, the more that we have to go out and find likeminded people that are on the same level, playing at the same level and wanting the same things that we want. And they’re not going to be like our high school buddies. I’m not trying to say that as being mean or insensitive.

And to be honest with you, I have a high school buddy that I absolutely love. I have a couple that I do love and that I am on the same – I actually have a childhood friend too that these girls may be listening, may not be listening, but what’s also funny about following your own path is that sometimes people come back into your life.

Like, I had a girlfriend that we’re literally like the same person, and we hadn’t seen each other since, like, fifth grade. And I can’t wait to continue to fly and see her and vacation with her and her family and this whole journey of me putting myself out there and doing what I want to do in my life has allowed me to reconnect with her, which is amazing. And those are the types of relationships that we all really want in our life, right?

So, one of the last ideas that I have for you if you still are like, okay, I still need more ideas or I want more connection within my own community and I don’t have the money to invest in buying my friends, you can look at networking events. So, there are so many events out there. There are so many different groups that you can become a part of that are business related.

There’s a lot of – we were just talking about this recently as well – there’s a lot of new, up and coming – in a lot of different cities – there’s a lot of young professional groups. Or if you’re not in that realm or age category, you can look at other networking events that are well suited for you. And likely, if you’re going and finding a networking event for a specific reason, you’re going to connect with people that are also likeminded.

So just make sure it aligns with whatever it is that you believe in or something that you like to do. Don’t go to a networking event that you absolutely despise and expect to find your best friend there because that’s likely not going to happen if they really, really enjoy it. You want to be able to find the things that you love and then do those things and see who you meet while you’re doing that.

So think about some of the areas of your life that you really enjoy, you enjoy doing certain things. Go and do them and see who shows up after time. Just be open to connecting with people. And a really powerful exercise that I did a few years ago was I actually – some of you may think that this is really creepy, but this is what one of my mentors at the time, one of the exercises that they gave me that they actually did in their own life, because they were at a point, at one point, that they outgrew a lot of people in their relationships and they started seeing massive success.

And there is a lot of really fake relationships and people that weren’t happy for that success and you will also have that. You’re going to have people that you think are your friends and then they start to see massive success and all of a sudden, they’re naysayers or they have an opinion about your success or they tell you you’ve changed and you’re not aligning with your values.

Maybe you have this within your family too, like, they don’t like the person that you’re becoming. That’s their opinion, okay, and you need to let that shit go as quick as possible because it’s absolutely toxic and you know that it’s not true. But I promise you, you will have that, either if it’s in friends or if it’s in family. People are not going to be okay with the way that you live your life. As you change, they’re going to have an opinion of it. So you have to be able to let that go.

But anyways, this mentor of mine, she had gone through this previously, and so she gave me an exercise that helped her through it years before. And it was basically, think about what type of friend you want and do an entire list on it. Get really crystal clear on who she is, what she wears, where does she hang out, what does she do for fun, what does she like to read? What does she do in her free time? Is she a mom? Does she own a business? All of the little intricate details, being as specific as you possibly can, writing it all down. And once you’re clear on it, it’s one of those things where it’s like ask and you shall receive. And you’ll be surprised, once you’re clear and you’re open to it, what starts to present itself in your life.

So, again, like, if you’re lacking some really deep fulfilled relationships, that’s another exercise that you can do. But a few of the ones that I have chatted about on this podcast is the masterminds, or retreats, which are my go-tos that I absolutely love. And the reason why is because I have gained so much out of them. Number two, engaging with others on calls or Skypes or different groups that you can do even like online or on Vimeo or a chat call, something like that. And the other one is networking events; finding different events within your community if you want more one on one.

Now, one of the things that I really highly suggest that you do that I’m just starting to do in my own life, I’m literally doing this now, like I have some people that I really care for and that I love, and what I’m trying to be more mindful of is really showing up for them and showing my love and my appreciation for them in their life, whatever it is that they’re doing, letting them know that, hey, I’m here for it and I’m here for you.

So if they’re doing something, if they’re hosting an event, if they’ve invited you to go on their book tour, rally your people, take time off, go and show up for them and let them know that you’re here to support them because that’s what we need. And if that’s what you’re lacking in your life, you have to give that to others first, okay.

So be a good friend first and you will get that back in your own life. But we have to learn to give a little bit more and take time out of our busy schedules to say yes to some of the things that are important to the people that we love, the ones that we really and to nurture our relationships with, and show up for them as well.

I just did this recently. I have a friend that just released a new book and during the presale side of things, I ordered 10 of them, okay. Like, it’s a number one seller on Amazon and this was my way of saying, like, hey, I’m here for you. I just ordered 10 books. I’m going to gift them to people.  I love reading and I know that her message will be really well perceived by other women in my life. And in addition, she had a stop on her book tour that was in Chicago, which is near me, and so I road-tripped down to support her and show up for her book tour, her book launch party. And that made me feel really good. I also knew that it means the world to her that I showed up for that.

So, remember those little things too as you go. And also, when you show up for things like that, guess what, I got to connect with other likeminded women that were showing up for the same reason. And so you never know where your next friend could be hanging out or where that next big connection might be. You know, it’s all about connecting dots as well. So some of the incredible opportunities that I’ve had in my life, especially recently over the last year in my business, have been through these incredible relationships that I’ve built and then their connection.

So it’s all connecting the dots, you know. You connect with so and so and then they introduce you to so and so or you meet – it’s all connecting the dots and it all makes sense in the big picture. But just be open to meeting those people as you’re growing your business and you’re living the life that you want to live. Be congruent with that because that’s where those people are going to show up.

So, if you are a lonely entrepreneur, if you’re lacking some human connection in your world, I hope that you can take some of these ideas and try them out and see how they feel for you. And if you’re not a lonely entrepreneur, if you’re just an entrepreneur that doesn’t think that you need friends, I’m here to tell you that you do need a little bit of human connection. And, to be honest with you, the connections that I’ve made through my coaching and my journey have fulfilled my life beyond what I would have been able to do on my own with my head down in the sand, absolutely beyond that.

And so, just know that as well. Pick your head up every once in a while, and connect with likeminded people because you’re going to grow 10 times faster by surrounding yourself by people that are playing at a higher level or at the same level and can help you along that way versus just trying to do it all on your own. It can be lonely that way. So, take my words of wisdom from someone that has been there, that has had that opinion and has been on the other side of it as well, making really incredible connections in my business and in my life.

So, I hope you guys enjoyed this topic and if you haven’t already, please, please, please take some time to leave us a five-star review. Share the podcast with your friends, with your family, with anybody and everybody so that they can hear some of these incredible topics that we have coming on and these incredible empowering women that I am interviewing over these next several weeks.

So, I have an incredible lineup for all of you. I hope you all have an incredible week and I shall see you next week.  Thanks, guys.

Thanks for showing up and listening to this week’s episode of the Love Your Living podcast. If you’re ready to create a business and life you love or simply take your already-pretty incredible life to the next level, head on over to loveyourlivingonline.com or simply check out the link in this week’s episode of show notes to instantly download my 6-Figure & Beyond Business Blueprint. You’re going to absolutely love it.

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