Sisters. 

As we’re rolling into GL18- I thought I’d share some thoughts with you. 

This screenshot of my personal accounts are all negative balances except my checking account with $184.07 in it. 

The $25,000 loan and my credit card just bridging $7,000 are all expenses from GL17. 

I’m not financially irresponsible, just uneducated.

My dad got me my first pretend checkbook when I was 14?  But when I started using drugs and drinking at 17, needless to say I wasn’t the most financially responsible person. I remember the first time I learned I owed my bank $1200 from the mysterious “reserve line” I wasn’t even aware I had.  Apparently when you deposit a check, only $100 of it is available for the first 24 hours until it clears.  #whoops. I also remember when I bought my first house, and after the first year, I looked at the actual statement, and noticed that I had basically paid zero off the principal of the loan, and that my mortgage of $2300 was going towards interest.  I was gutted.  I hate owing people money, I hate being late on payments, and I always do my best to keep my credit score in at least the Low 700’s.

Anyway, I digress…..

Financial insecurity has always been a ‘thing’ for me.  I grew up in a hard working middle class family.  I never went without anything, but I was always feelings like we never had enough.  Could potentially be alcoholism, but I don’t have the mental capacity to go into that right now.

This picture was yesterday, 12 hours at a desk working on the event, but I’m actually writing this blog from the back of a van, with bags of inventory piled around me in trash bags as myself and my two wing grrrls, drive towards Vegas for 2018.  I still have a lot to do leading up to this event which is only FIVE DAYS away from happening now.  But at least unlike last year (our first year), I wasn’t just diagnosed with Hyperthyroidism and sleep deprived for 2 weeks!

But as we roll into GL18, I look at the debts I took on from my personal account, to pull this event off.  We took out several loans, and have spent the majority of 2017 paying them off, but have yet to touch my personal debts.  The credit card was used for AV costs, and the cash flow manager loan was used to pay The Artisan hotel, to take over the hotel.

Clearly, we had to learn that lesson the hard way.  After GL17, there were SEVERAL times we nearly rolled up our doors due to the inability to get ahead.  But of course, we’ve always found a way, and looking back on our recent IGG campaign, YOU all found a way……

So now, with GL18 just days away, I noticed that I’m starting to get on edge, and had to question why.  Of course there is a lack of preparation.  We spent 10 days from April 8-18th packing up our warehouse and shipping out 700 orders.  Not great timing in retrospect to be doing that RIGHT before your second annual event.

But I realised that a big part of this edginess comes from that rooted fear of financial insecurity.

But the reality is, financial security is an illusion.  And this is why I’m writing this blog.  If you’re like me, you can easily look at numbers in your account, and let that dictate your mood, or feeling of success.  I can quickly look in my personal account and become overwhelmed and think “what the actual fuck are we doing?”.

Then I think back to the 8 year old who came and met me yesterday after talking to her on the phone a little over a month ago about why she should love her body, and not feel like she is anything less than perfect.  I think about the tears that rolled down her face as we finished saying The Pledge together, and I know that financial insecurity is an illusion.  I think back to the day prior to that, and look at the footage we captured of Amber Gallegos interpreting (signing) a video for us, and explaining the importance of bringing awareness to the deaf community and how we need to do better as a society.

I also think of every member of the grrrlarmy who has had her life changed by this brand.  And whilst my Grandmother might not see the value in what we’re doing because all she ever hears about is how tight money is, and my partner and I are fighting, and my health is declining.  But what a lot of people don’t understand, is that entrepreneurship is rewarding beyond not having to wake up to an alarm clock, being told what to do by someone else, and getting to set your own schedule.  It’s about having the opportunity for creating real, substantial change.

So if you’re reading this, and you’re a business owner, or contemplating starting your own business, do not let financial insecurity deter you from chasing your passion.  These numbers in my personal account are temporary.  And even if they kept getting bigger, who the fuck cares?  We’ve created an army of women ready to FIGHT for any one of us.  GL18 is doubled in size from GL17, and we learned by making A LOT of mistakes the first time around.  If we let that keep us back from doing it again, there wouldn’t be any magic.

When I die, I’m not taking any of these numbers with me, positive or negative.  Interest rates and the ‘Federal Reserve’, have a fascinating history if you ever get time, look up how the institution got started, and who’s behind it. “The Thrive Movement” is a good place to start on youtube.

Once again, I digress….

So much is about to go down next weekend.  I can’t even articulate.  But had I let fear creep in, and financial insecurity hold me back, a lot of lives wouldn’t be evolving next weekend.  Which of course will have a ripple effect on many more.

So to all of you who have made the sacrifices to get out here, I thank you from the bottom of my heart, and know that GL19 will be even more untouchable.  With that many more lives impacted.

Love

MFCEO