Ep 325: Life Lessons of an Entrepreneur with Denise Villa | Recap Episode

AJV (00:07):
Hey brand builder, Rory Vaden here. Thank you so much for taking the time to check out this interview as always, it’s our honor to provide it to you for free and wanted to let you know there’s no big sales pitch or anything coming at the end. However, if you are someone who is looking to build and monetize your personal brand, we would love to talk to you and get to know you a little bit and hear about some of your dreams and visions and share with you a little bit about what we’re up to to see if we might be a fit. So if you’re interested in a free strategy call with someone from our team, we would love to hear from you. You can do that at brand builders, group.com/pod call brand builders, group.com/pod call. We hope to talk to you soon.
AJV (00:54):
Hey, AJ Vaden here. And here is the recap of my recent conversation with Denise via and I love conversations like this because they’re just real. And if you’re looking for a real conversation with a, a real entrepreneur, who’s not shy about telling you the ups downs, good, bad, ugly all of the in between then go check out the full episode on the influential personal brand podcast with Denise via lessons from a real life entrepreneur. But I’m gonna pick out a couple of them that I thought were really important for this recap episode that we’re gonna talk about right now. So one of the things that I think is pertinent that I’m gonna share just because it relates to me. And since I’m doing these recaps, I get to decide what to talk about. But I, I loved her take on what it’s like to work with your spouse.
AJV (01:50):
And I worked with my spouse have for a really long time, little known fact Rory Vaden and I were business partners before we were spouses. We were business partners before we fell in love and got married, we kind of broke that Cardinal rule. And we have a unique perspective that we’ve never not known each other as business partners. Whereas many couples who work together became couples before they started working together. And we don’t know what life looks like, not working together. And perhaps that’s God’s saving grace or us in our marriage as we don’t know any other way. But I, I loved a couple of things that she said I thought were really insightful. And what I loved most is that what often you hear people talking about are ways to make it work. Like how do you, you know, still find time for each other and not let work conveyed the off hours.
AJV (02:50):
And how do you divide and conquer and how do you stay in your own lane and how you not kill each other? how do you still stay married and do this together. And one of the things that I loved about this perspective, this take is actually what are the, the benefits of working together. And I picked this as one of my highlights because this isn’t the approach that you often hear when people talk about what it’s like to work and be married with your spouse. And here’s what I loved about it is the benefits of getting to work with your spouse is that you get to see them in a light that you would never get to see them if you didn’t work together. And so I can only share my personal experience, but I think one of the most amazing things about being married to my business partner, my husband, Rory Vaden, is I get to see him in his element.
AJV (03:43):
I get to see him live out. God’s true gifts on his life on a daily basis. And yeah, some of them drive me bananas because that’s not how God made me, but the amazing part it’s I get to see him in his element. I get to see him the way that other people get to see him, that I wouldn’t get to see if I didn’t work in the business with him. I get to see his brilliance at work in our company and with our clients and, and our content and what we do. I don’t know if I would have such an appreciation of that or get to see it in that light if we didn’t get to work together. And I think that’s a really healthy perspective. If you do happen to work with your spouse, or maybe it’s a parent or a sibling, or you’re in a family business, it can be hard.
AJV (04:30):
It is hard, there’s hard things about it. And there’s also really good things about it. We just choose to talk about the hard ones and we don’t often talk about like what a blessing and what a gift it is to get, to build something together with your spouse or your family to, to get to enjoy seeing each other’s gifts at work, however they can drive you crazy. And I think just making that decided choice up going, man, like what are the, the gifts, the blessings in this creates a heart change in me, at least that makes the more challenging parts, less challenging, because I get to take a, a, I get a front seat of seeing my partner, my husband, my, you know, my spouse, my friend live out his potential, live out these gifts that God has put in his life.
AJV (05:22):
And I’m really grateful for that. And I, I love that part of our conversation of it’s easy to talk about just like, oh, how do you make it work? How do you not kill each other? How do you like not let work take over? And I love that there’s also a piece of this, of like, how do you get to just sit back and revel and the awesomeness that is your, you know, dad, child, brother, sister, uncle, husband, wife and get to see them at work. And so I just love that perspective on that of working with your spouse. So that was the first thing second thing that I just kind of, of wanted to highlight but I thought was really fascinating is what it’s like to be an entrepreneur of wearing all these different hats of man.
AJV (06:08):
You are sitting with so many responsibilities and of which include taking out the trash to pay in the bills to, you know, sitting on boards, to writing checks, to being featured in media, to letting people go laying people off, hiring people, leading people, managing people. And I just don’t know if you know, the, the letter CEO, chief executive officer are all encompassing enough for what really happens on a daily life as an entrepreneur of a small business. Right. and I thought that was a really good take of going, like what it really means to be an entrepreneur is that you’re willing to do all of the things. And you’re not above any things. If you know the mate isn’t there, it’s you clean it up, right. Trashman, didn’t show up, you take it out, person, quit, you do the sales call, next person quits, you do this call.
AJV (07:08):
Right. And it’s, and I think a part of that is an ingrained feeling right. Of it’s a, this is mine and it’s whatever it takes, right. It’s like, I like so many things in my life today to parenting. , it’s like the, if the day, if the diaper needs to be changed and no says around, I’m doing it right. If you know, the trash needs to be taken out, I’m doing it. Dishes need to be washed, I’m doing it. Right. And it’s, it’s no different than at work, right. It’s like, I take honor in getting to change my kids’ diapers, although I’m very happy. I don’t have to do that anymore. Now that they’re potty trained, but it’s, it’s an element of I’m taking care of something that I love. And that is a perspective shift again, of going, it’s not that we have to do all the dirty work as entrepreneurs it’s we get to do all the things that take care of the thing that we love.
AJV (08:08):
And that includes our clients, our employees, our mission our, you know, our company is like another baby, right? It’s like a child. But we get to do all the things to take care of the thing that we love, that we have to do all the dirty work. And it’s so hard. Those things are true too, but it’s that, that slight perspective shift that again makes all the challenging things, just a little less challenging. All right. And then my third thing kind of on this same kind of same line, right? I, this, I love the kind of title of this, just lessons of a real life entrepreneur of what is it like to go through the different ebbs and flows, the peaks and valleys? The good and the bad of having an exclusively high growth company to, wow. Now we’re having to lay everyone off just to survive and then to come back and go, okay, now things are back again.
AJV (09:08):
And, and that’s an emotional roller coaster and like buckle up, hold on tight, cuz you just dunno how fast the drop’s gonna happen and then how fast it could pick back up again. And I loved what she said about like how do you create some consistency right. Both mentally, emotionally, even physically of making sure that your work, isn’t just the only thing in your life. And I think that’s the real takeaway for me is I think as American entrepreneurs and I can only say that because I am an American. But I’m sure this is true in most countries. Our identity gets tied up in our work and our identity is not what we do. Our identity is who we are. And if all we do, if the only thing we do is work, then we lose side of all of the other pieces of us.
AJV (10:05):
So to create more consistency, to create more stability, what we do is we have to have a little bit more diversity and all the things that we do, right. I can honestly say before I became a mother work was way more all consuming than I would care to admit today. But I think through becoming a parent, I realized it’s like, oh man, I had really put too much of my identity into one thing. And I wanted to be really careful not just to dump it into the next thing, which is motherhood of going well, where is my identity and who am I, if it’s not just, you know, being Jasper and Liam’s mom or doing this ex company or doing these ex services or whatever it may be. But it’s really making sure that it’s like, I have more diversity in my life of recommitting my life back to, to Christ and getting more involved in Bible studies and increasing a friend group.
AJV (11:08):
I didn’t have friends for a really long time work was everything. And it was creating, you know, routines and habits that’s that created some separation where everything, everything wasn’t centered on just this one thing. And I think that that’s necessary in my opinion, so that your identity doesn’t get just tied up in one thing because that isn’t your identity. That is a, a phase of your life. It is something that you’ve done, although it may be a large phase of your life, but it is not who you are. It is simply something that you have done for a period of time until you move on to the next thing. Y’all so many takeaways, those were just three highlights. They had a common central theme there. Loved this conversation, loved these takeaways. They were important to me. I hope they’re important to you. So stick around and we’ll see you next time on the influential personal brand.