I say this all the time because I really mean it, but I love what I do because it brings me in contact with amazing women like the one featured in today’s interview, Karen Strunks. When I came across her and her blog, I was instantly drawn to both her, her writing, her life story and what she does. She’s absolutely amazing, successful and nice! I could gush on and on about her, but I’ll shut up and let her take it away!
I’ve been reading your blogs for a while and I’m always amazed by your story. Could you share a little bit about who you are and how you came to be where you are now, doing what you are doing?
I come from a very traditional, aka boring, background of doing 9-5 office work. It sucked the soul out of me and made me very depressed. One day, after 10 years being in the same job, I walked out and decided to take control of my life and that started my pursuit of life of freedom. I began my entrepreneurial career 9 years ago as a dominatrix; an alternative career choice but with hindsight it was not surprising I chose to do empowering work where I was the boss. It was liberating. I had a taste of freedom, doing what I loved and making money on MY terms.
From there I went on to become a professional photographer, which in turn, led me to embracing the world of social media and sharing my experience and expertise in that area. Today I help freedom seekers and entrepreneurs create a life and business exactly on their terms, doing what they love and making the money that they want. No compromise.
It’s been an incredible nine years. There’s been travel, adventure, working with global brands, giving lectures at universities, speaking in front of audiences of 400+ at conferences and receiving global press on tv, radio, newspapers and magazines, all the while following my passions and helping people.
What are the 3 biggest lessons you have learned being an entrepreneur that you wish everyone knew before they started their business?
Follow your own rules, trust your instincts and act on inspiration.
Never, EVER, fear failure.
Success and making money is as much about mindset than it is about taking action. More so in fact.
When I see you photos and read your stuff, I sometimes wonder, does she ever have a bad day? Ha ha….So what do you do when you have an off or bad day? How do you break through that?
Haha! Sure, I do have days that aren’t as brilliant as others, or days when I feel frustrated by having such high ambitions and things aren’t happening fast enough, or just the odd ‘off’ day, but they aren’t that common. I work on my mindset and positivity every single day so I am able to get out of more ‘negative’ moods quite quickly. Besides, if I start moaning about it, I’ll just be entering into victim/martyr mode and spreading that negativity to other people, and where’s the good in that!
If I have something to share of a less negative nature, such this post about a bad relationship, Be Careful Who You Let In When You Are Feeling Weak. I tie it in with a lesson or something inspiring or motivating so it’s of use to the reader and it not just me having a pity party.
From where I stand, you are very very successful. I want to be like you. How do you quantify and celebrate your success?
How I quantify success; can I do what I want, with who I want, when I want, where I want? Can I wear what I want? Can I set my own schedule? Am I following my passions? Am I in complete control of my life and destiny and not answerable to anyone?
If the answer is YES to those questions, I am successful.
The bottom line, before the more material, outward signs of success (though I am VERY money positive and encourage wealth creation) is FREEDOM. That’s what drives me. That’s what success is to me.
I don’t really stop to celebrate! I’m always moving forward. Perhaps I should have some celebrations!
What has been the most rewarding thing for you since launching your own business? What has been the most disappointing thing?
The most rewarding thing is that I have done it, and I am still doing it. They say it’s not the goal that matters but who you become in pursuit of that goal. Never a truer word spoken! It’s been a roller coaster. I’ve been tested. I’ve held on when it’s felt like my world has been crumbling. I’ve withstood what would make most people run back to the ‘safety’ of a job. Would I do it all again. YES. Even the hard times have been rewarding!
Working with people to build their dream business and helping them to change their lives is incredibly rewarding. My clients do the work and I think I get more excited about their success than they do lol.
Disappointing thing… Hmmm. I’m not sure. I don’t tend to focus on the negative. If something doesn’t work out I just move on quickly.
What’s the best advice you have for someone like me who may be struggling a bit, but still shows up everyday and does the work?
If you don’t give up, you cannot fail. Keep taking action in the direction of your goals. Base your decision on where you want to be, not where you are now or your circumstances. On a practical level, offer something awesome for sale every day, reach new audiences, and make sure that you are on track, following your passions, working with people you love hanging out with and having fun!
What is the biggest motivating factor for you in life and business?
Freedom. That’s it.
What is your favorite or best client/customer story?
Oh, it’s hard to pick a favourite! I’ll pick a recent one. In the words of my client…
‘I was thinking about how appreciative I am for your support. You have been a true life changer for me!’
This is from a client who is committed to doing what it takes for as long as it takes. She has incredible tenacity and it’s a privilege to work with her. But that’s what I do, help people change their lives.
How can my readers find you and connect with you?
I’m everywhere! lol.
My blog is here are karenstrunks.com.
Tweet me at @karenstrunks
Watch my business, success, money and life videos on Youtube
Join my FREE facebook group, Rebel Business Bitches, where I hangout every day to help and answer any questions. It’s for women who are sick of the flowers and unicorns in the female entrepreneurship and who mean business!
Is there anything else you’d like to share with my readers?
Yes! I’m giving away a free copy of my amazon book; 8 Secrets To Playing It Big In Life And Business. Download your FREE copy here!