Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in personal development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Sara Stepa, founder of Step Up Consulting & Coaching, located in Calgary, AB, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
As a personal development nerd, author, and coach, I encourage anyone who comes into my energetic space to choose themselves courageously. I spent many years following the path I thought I "should." I did well for myself, only to end up in an anxious and overwhelmed state of being with no remaining connection to myself. I had to find my own courage to make the best choice for me, even if it didn't make sense on paper.
Now I am committed to helping others ask themselves what they want, reconnecting with their inner desires instead of following the path society has laid out for them. Through my book, Choosing Fulfillment Is Scary AF, and all my coaching services, I help people see and believe they are worthy of being chosen and that their dreams are meant for them. I lead from the heart, and I don't pretend to have all the answers.
Tell us about yourself
I am a born and raised Alberta girl from Canada with an adventurous spirit. Traveling throughout my 20's taught me more than any university education ever could, where I traveled to over 30 destinations, including Ecuador, Nepal, and Vietnam.
I always had a deeper desire to be a writer and write a book, but I was conditioned to believe that I wouldn't make any money and that I wouldn't be successful. Instead, I pushed that desire down and dismissed it until I couldn't anymore. The pandemic caused me to take a serious look at my job, and while I loved it for many years, I realized I no longer did. It had taken on a life of its own, and I was no longer passionate about the work. I didn't care at all anymore. For a bit more context, I was working in the non-profit sector, so caring about your work was part of the job description.
Without a plan in place, I left my role as the Director of Programs in February 2021 to embark on an intense and soulful journey of finding my path (one I am still discovering). Since leaving that role, I have written and published my first book - Choosing Fulfillment Is Scary AF, Get Unstuck and Change the Life You Have into the Life You Want, and started two businesses.
I am still passionate about the non-profit sector, so I help charities write funding proposals and grants to secure the funding they need for their missions to thrive. I also started my personal coaching business to help guide others back to themselves and find the courage they need to choose themselves.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I am an international Amazon bestselling author. I became a #1 Bestseller across six different marketplaces on my release date, and my book reached the #1 Self Help book in Canada.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
Two things - Cash flow & working solo. I miss working alongside others and the support they provided. Now, I'm in the accounting department, marketing, and communications team, CEO, tech support, and business developer. Wearing different hats isn't new to me, but man, it would be nice to be able to focus on the areas I enjoy fully!
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Get to know yourself. Your beliefs will be challenged in new ways by starting a business. Understanding where your blocks are, where your limiting beliefs stem from, and your willingness to look inward will give you answers that will help your business thrive long term. Understand your strengths and your weaknesses. Learn how to balance your energy and take care of yourself.
- Your network is your lifeline. When you become a solopreneur, your network will be a major asset in providing advice, giving referrals, and helping you figure out things you don't know how to do.
- Rest IS doing something. When starting a new business, we can get stuck in the hustle and grind mentality. We feel pressure to always be "doing something." Rest IS doing something. Just like our physical bodies need rest to replenish after an intense workout, so do our minds.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
It's challenging to go your own way and start your own thing, but what I've found to be the most challenging... is to trust myself. I have had to bet on myself wholeheartedly by stepping into the unknown, and when you've never done that before, it can feel scary as hell.
Ask yourself, am I enough? Am I worthy of the dream/business/goal I want? Do I believe it's possible? If you can't answer YES to those questions, I'd start with you.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email email@example.com; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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