Photo credit: Tiffany Kowalski
Vernetta R. Freeney aka The Truth Confidant™ is an award-winning Blogger, Speaker, and Podcaster. Read how this well-established entrepreneur handled a major burnout which led to the sale of a very successful blog business “Women Are Gamechangers” that would ultimately welcome in new opportunities.
In the midst of recovering from my burnout, I realized that I shouldn’t do what others expect of me but what I’m supposed to do with my own life.
You are the founder of Truth Confidant ™ a service which curbs burnouts, ensures daily productivity and creativity to your clients of entrepreneurs, teachers, and corporate employees. What led you to start the business?
I started this new direction not because I wanted to but I had to. In fact, when I knew it was time to walk away from Women Are Gamechangers I was actually working on something else. I had spent a few months working on it and then God told me to stop, that’s not what you’re supposed to do. I had already started a 13-week program with a group of ladies when God told me on the second week that this wasn’t the direction I was meant to go in.
Let’s go back to why I knew it was time to walk away from a company I started. I knew when I started Women Are Gamechangers that I wouldn’t always keep it. I was to start it so the right person could take it further. And that right person unknown to me at the time is my mother who now runs Women Are Gamechangers.
But in 2015, I had about 4 businesses, family responsibilities, and volunteering that just overtook my mind, energy, and time. I literally said enough. I shut down in December and decided to remove myself from everything God didn’t want me attached to. I put myself in the position of being there for everyone but myself. So I had to remove myself from everything that wasn’t meant for me in this season of my life.
In the midst of recovering from my burnout, I realized that I shouldn’t do what others expect of me but what I’m supposed to do with my own life. And I know my purpose is to help others. How I do that is reflective of the season I’m in. And the season I’m in right now is to help others avoid burnout while increasing their productivity and creativity so they can live their life to the fullest.
The program I created is to help people create their own framework (a system for how they run their business or perform on their job) to include a daily mental detox while focusing on accomplishing a goal within 90 days.
What is the number one reason (telltale sign) many entrepreneurs and business owners experience a burnout?
For me, because I can’t speak for others, is when I take on too much responsibility when I know my plate is already crowded. I tried to do everything I was good at, what others asked of me and trying to be there for others. I learned in the midst of my recovery that I can only give from the overflow that is on my saucer. Not the overflow from my cup but on the saucer my cup is sitting on. That way I’m never giving my own energy and then having to replace that. But I give from my saucer which holds the overflow from my cup, then I will never deplete my own energy again.
Is there any hesitation with potential clients who want to be assured their business concerns remain confidential?
I’ve never had that problem when people want to work with me. I don’t even post if and when I work with someone. I don’t like to post every single time I work with someone because I’m more focused on working with them opposed to telling the world every step I take in my business.
If they share a testimonial I post that. But other than that what we say and do is between us. When I was thinking of a name for the program I wanted something that is reflective of who I am to the people I work with. The word confidant came to me and I knew it was a fit. People tell me things in confidence all the time because they know I won’t tell. I don’t tell because I wouldn’t want others to tell what I share.
And in business, most people are embarrassed when they go through certain situations. Especially when it comes to not making any money or a profit. That’s why I created my podcast. To share those embarrassing situations in a public forum so others who can relate to those experiences know there is someone who has been through it and will help them without running to tell the world about it.
Why do you believe it is so hard for many of us to face the truth to let go of businesses that no longer service our needs?
Afraid of what others think. That’s the main reason I didn’t sell in 2013. But now I know God wanted me to prepare a foundation for my mother to leave teaching and step into a platform that works perfectly for her.
But essentially people don’t walk away from a business because they are afraid that other people will think they are a failure. And walking away is a public failure in the eyes of many. For me, it’s not a failure but a knowing that the lesson is over and I got what I needed. Time to apply it elsewhere. And I’m applying many lessons now.
Through your podcast “A Toast to the Truths” what is the overall message you send out to audience members who tune in?
The overall message I want people to take away from the podcast is to know that entrepreneurship isn’t some day at the beach where you have photo shoots for Instagram. But a journey with peaks and valleys you must be willing to go through.
People lead others to believe all it takes is knowing your purpose and you can make all this money. When in reality there are so many hidden things that happen in business daily that most aren’t even aware of until it happens to them.
I wanted to shed light on those topics such as being a homeless entrepreneur, dealing with a mental illness, having a coach tell you what your vision is instead of helping you realize the vision you have yourself, etc. These topics touch people in different ways but most vent their frustration online instead of looking at what happened and what not to allow to happen again.
The podcast shares experience with solutions that anyone can take and apply in some form or fashion. A Toast To Truths is a name that came to me. Sidenote: my best ideas that resonate well with my audience come to me opposed to me creating it. That’s when I know it’ll be a hit.
Back to the podcast. Everyone wants to be an entrepreneur because it’s the cool thing to do now. However, everyone is not meant to be one. Everyone is not strong enough to handle the daily objections, trials, and obstacles that pop up. Everyone’s purpose in life is not to take their passion and turn it into a business. Contrary to what’s said out there, you don’t have to be an entrepreneur. That’s why I work with corporate employees and teachers because what The Truth Confidant™ teaches can be applied across industries.
Will you be hosting future conferences and seminars?
Not exactly sure what the future holds, however, I do know I have some ideas. But I would say definitely sign up for my newsletter on my blog http://vernettarfreeney.com so you know when something is coming up. I do have virtual workshops and local Houston workshops in the works. So definitely stay in the know via my newsletter.
When you’re not helping others to achieve happiness in their professional lives how do you continue to ensure yours?
I know when to close myself off from the world so I can just breathe. Most importantly, I say NO and mean it. So I don’t take on too much responsibility anymore. I’ve had to learn to do that. So I’ll turn my phone off, turn on Netflix, read a book, take a nap or just walk around outside for a while. But I begin each day journaling so my mind is clear of any past thoughts that could trip me up during the day. That way I’m focused on the present and not looking back at the past. I make sure I mentally detox every morning so I’m equipped with handling what the day will throw at me. That helps me keep my soul at peace.
Thank you so much for the interview. And wishing you many more years of providing great content to your readers.
To learn more about Truth Confidant ™ visit http://vernettarfreeney.com/truth-confidant/