This week we have an interview with Rachel Haith. Rachel is serving as a Logistics Officer in the RAF; her husband is also serving. She has two young daughters at home and squeezes in being a Forever Living business owner (as well as doing a Master's and training for comedically long charity bike rides). This isn't an advert for the Forever franchise, although it is covered in reasonable depth when we discuss Rachel's story of becoming a business owner. Importantly, there is a lot of experience and inspiration from Rachel and some very good tips that are universally relevant around maintaining the correct mindset and self belief. I'm excited about this one so without further ado...
Rachel joined the military 15 years ago and, as many of us do at that point, thought it would be her life. A few years ago, she realised she hadn't quite reached the stage she had expected to in her career in terms of promotion. She decided to shake things up a bit and decided to sign up for some physical challenges and also to a Masters Degree. During this period she had a friend who had embarked on the Forever journey and Rachel felt a little jealous when she didn't have to go back to work full time after the birth of her child because of the flexibility and freedom offered by Forever Living. Upon further investigation into the business opportunity, she liked what she found and was particularly excited by being self employed and deciding the pace of growth for herself.
One message emerges early in the interview and reappears throughout - in the military (and often in civilian jobs) we tend to undersell ourselves and fit the mould. We shrink our dreams to fit what someone else tells us we can realistically achieve. Rachel found that starting her own business allowed her to rediscover some of the enthusiasm she had when she first started out in the RAF.
A typical day for Rachel will include all the trappings of motherhood - drops offs, pick ups and bedtimes - but also includes her full time job, with lunchtimes or breaks being used to do some Forever networking when possible. Evenings are full of Masters reading or writing when assignments are due, or more Forever work including weekly webinars, marketing, selling or hosting parties.
It is because of days like these - and the absence of a tardis - that Rachel has learnt her biggest lesson: the importance of good time management and prioritisation. You have to suffer the short term pain, such as missing the occasional bedtimes, in order that you can reap the long term gain: the time and financial freedom to be with the children more after RAF life and never having to miss anything again. In order to manage this frenetic schedule, Rachel highly recommends Leonie Dawson and her planner. It is a useful tool to plan and to keep track of what you have done. Rachel feels - and I entirely agree - that it is crucial to look back and see how far you've come. It has resources which help you at the end of your business year to come to terms with what you've achieved.
Rachel is very aware of the upcoming challenges for her, particularly around becoming the military spouse as opposed to the serving spouse and having less 'say' in where the family move. There will also inevitably be a loss of local network when they move, which they were in the thick of doing when the episode was recorded. With the way Forever is set up, she will still have a nationwide network and the new location will have a network she can join, but there obviously wont be the same coffee date/business planning meetings that she has become used to.
Clearly, she has a plan for that. Given that she is still fairly new to the Forever business, she still has a lot of untapped resources in her current friend network and that will be her first port of call. After that, it is about facing the daunting challenge of immersing herself in the new local community and becoming a part of it. Rachel also notes that the military allows a ready made network to operate in at each base. She feels that taking a bona fide business with her will increase her confidence and may help integration into the new community as it always helps to 'find your tribe' and those you have something in common with. It tends to be Northerners for me.
Another important message, and one that I'm sure will resonate with most of us, comes through when I asked Rachel what she wished she had known when she started her business. Her response was that she wished she had had more self belief in the beginning. At first it was excitement that carried her along, but she wishes she could have believed in herself sooner. Forever really encourages self improvement and working on yourself first. It is all about mindset and you must focus on unlocking your potential. One resource that Rachel credits as helping with this is 'The Secret'. It taught Rachel to acknowledge the law of attraction: that if you say and think positive things then that is the energy you send out and that is what will come back.
We break here for a small comedic discourse on what we would never allow the movers to pack and what they have decided for themselves that they should just take. Perhaps we need a poll for the most ridiculous 'you won't believe what they packed' story...
Rachel has another useful piece of wisdom for us. In military life, there are many things we cannot change and we must practice acceptance but we can always fight for what you can change, especially for the good of your family. In order to help her with this she finds the Serenity Prayer to be useful.
Looking ahead it is Rachel's goal is to be matching her Air Force income through Forever so there is no dip in wages in the household when she completes her service. Her big tips for us are to believe in yourself, maintain the correct mindset and do not shrink your dreams.
Recommendations this week:
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