How fit is your business?

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Every damn time I take a spin class with Sammy Friedman of Grooveryde (also luckily my CFO-in-training at Cleveland Flea) or at Harness Cycle, I emerge feeling inspired, empowered, clear. In other words, I feel like myself– a powerful, intelligent, gritty, talented Female Founder.

And today, I found the words to express what I usually want to tell all my coaching clients and business owners at Cleveland Flea– SURE IT’S HARD BUT THAT’S NO REASON TO QUIT.

Did you all really think business was going to be easy? We live within capitalism, in a world that is run by technology and within a city that has the infrastructure and mentality of the 1950’s.

You WILL have to do more work.

If you want to be the best.

You WILL have to feel pain.

If you want to succeed.

You WILL have to get up and put in the work.

If you want to make it.

I know you want me to take that away from you. But that’s just not the deal.

People tell me all the time that they’re inspired by my results.

But what you need to be inspired by is my effort.


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My business has the fastest record in Cleveland.

I made it that way. By practicing. By letting fear be there, but doing the work anyway. My business grew 10,000% in 3 months.

That’s gasoline, my friends. And my gasoline?

My compelling reason. I can’t NOT do this work. It is so meaningful to my heart.

If you want to run fast, go all in. If you want to go all in, decide WHY it matters. And remember that every damn day.


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How deep do we dive? Deeper than any incubator market in the country.

I can guarantee it.

I know the psychology of every type of business owner and shopper at Cleveland Flea.

You know how I got Deep Knowledge?

I went all in.

I chose the deep end over the shallow end.

No, I couldn’t see the bottom.

But now I am obsessed with diving deeper.

If you want to be the BEST in your business, and be resilient to competition, you MUST have deep knowledge, and to have deep knowledge you must spend as much time as you can in as dedicated way as possible getting there.

If you run your business as a side hustle you just won’t get there.

It requires the deep end. It requires jumping in not knowing where the bottom is.


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At Cleveland Flea, we actually walk close to a marathon at each event. The physical side of our business is REAL.

But theoretically-speaking, how far can we run? Are we giving up after 5 minutes?

No.

We keep going until we get to the finish line. We don’t give up. We can’t really. Because we have hundreds of thousands of dollars on the line, plus the added responsibility of running a business incubator and keeping thousands of people safe, we CAN’T give up– without disastrous consequences.

But the biggest consequence would be that we’d be giving up on ourselves.

We’d be violating the agreement we have with ourselves.

We’d be giving up on our integrity. To our own word. And that is how you go from HERE to THERE. You decide that you’re doing it and you don’t let yourself off the hook when the going gets tough. And believe me, the going WILL get tough.

Do you want a business that can meet any challenge? Do you want to build confidence in yourself and your business?

Show up and do the work. Every time.


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I decided this year that we have BIG plans to go national. To change not only Cleveland, but this country.

What makes that possible?

The confidence that we can go far.

The rigorous training we’ve had over the last 6 years.

The dedication we have to our team and our dreams.

The desire to change a world.

We don’t need perfect weather. We don’t even expect perfect weather. In fact, adversity makes us stronger.

And we’ve got endurance because we have a dream that keeps us pedaling forward.

Into the unknown.

Into the beauty.

Into the storm.

Into the sunshine.

Into it all.


Lastly, how dedicated are you to the work ahead?

I am 1000% committed to my dreams.

Through the bullshit, I’m committed.

Through the moments when I want to quit, I’m committed.

Through the ups, I’m committed.

Through the downs, I’m committed.

People think that because I’m committed that it MUST be easier for me. That somehow I don’t face the challenges that they do.

But they’re wrong.

And if you believe this about me, you’re wrong, too.

I am one of the toughest people on this planet. Because I work every damn day for my dreams. Through some of the most challenging obstacles.

If you’re like me, you require support because DAMN THIS LIFE TAKES A TOLL.

And if you’re like me, you know you have me for support.

I have empathy, not sympathy.

Because this shit is SUPPOSED to be hard.

And you’re ready for it.