My friend Holly often tells those who don't know her, when they ask what she does, that she is midwife of dreams.
Her statement, while challenging for those who aren't creative types, is not untrue, for her work is in showing artists how they can brand themselves and put their best face forward in a tough industry like music.
She is both harsh critic and passionate validator. And everyone needs one of those in their lives — even if Life Midwife is not a popular shingle in our everyday world.
There is a phrase I've always loved. It goes: "Each one, teach one." And put simply, it encourages the use of your own skill set to help others find their paths. Someone taught you. Now go share what you know and pay that knowledge forward.
The saying is rooted in African-American slave tradition, where education was denied blacks kept imprisoned. When one was taught to read, he or she was duty bound to share that knowledge with others without access. It resonates still today in myriad ways.
When we first were fermenting the idea for "Be Brilliant," we sought out someone who had created a vision and company like ours and asked her to meet with us. She was well-known. A major success story. On television talking about business all the Time. And she didn't know us at all.
Getting that meeting took about four months of asking and calling and planning around her busy and extremely successful life. But we didn't give up, feeling sure she was a right fit for our questions, and finally she agreed to hear us out — a pivotal moment that essentially green-lighted our idea as viable.
Because of Jen's guidance and approval — her generous mentorship — our company was born.
Good information is crucial and seeking out those with expertise early on can serve to answer questions — for your life and your business — before you alight on a wrong path.
Who in your world can answer your questions? Because in truth, we all have experts in something in our Rolodex, among our Facebook friends, even at our churches, gyms and PTAs.
Don't be afraid to seek those people out for help. The truest thing in the world is that most people love to be validated and also share what they're good at with others.
The midwife for your dream could be right next door. Don't be afraid to knock.