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5 ways women & femmes of color can liberate their business in 2021

Jan 22, 2021

We’ve all been fed the Capitalist & White Supremacist Kool-Aid all our lives.

The kind of nonsense that starts with ‘you’re not enough’, and ends with ‘it’s okay to give up sleep for a year if that means working towards success’.

We’ve been taught that there’s only ONE way to run a business, and if you try stepping a toe outta line, you’re doing it wrong, and you’re destined for failure.

And because of generations of trauma, lifelong conditioning, and plain-ol’ fear, we hold on to age-old, colonial, white ideals as entrepreneurs.

Let me say one important thing here.

If you know you’re holding onto these colonized ideals, that’s NOT YOUR FAULT.

You’re acting as socialized.

It’s tough for WOC to show up authentically in our businesses because we’ve been taught that we are wrong.

We’re too much, we don’t have the right “look,” and if we want to be successful, we need to assimilate to fit in.
If the last year has taught us nothing, it’s that its time to say “fuck that” to that colonizer bullshit.

The only way for us to truly thrive is to decolonize.

I know it can feel tricky to decolonize your business and life, so I wanted to share 5 ways I and my clients have decolonized and completely changed our businesses and lives:

 

1 – Integrate your WOC identity into your biz and messaging

White supremacy culture has taught us that it’s impolite to talk about race, and that we should be palatable to our “entire” audience.

Spoiler alert: they’re just talking about your white audience.

Your identity as a woman or femme of color is likely your most important identity you have – if not, it’s definitely in the top three.

So how in god’s green earth can you ever be sharing a fully authentic message if you’re leaving a massive part of yourself out?

Your identity is a part of the reason why you do what you do, how you do it, and who you serve.

Make sure you talk about it.

P.S. – I teach an entire free masterclass on how to integrate your WOC identity into your biz. Sign up for it here.

 

2 – Leave the rush behind

I found a version of this line on the interwebs and I fell in love with it instantly. In fact, it sits in a place of honor in my daily journal (and I might’ve shared it on Instagram too):

‘Constantly feeling like you need to DO something to HAVE something is a form of capitalist bullshit’

Okay, so maybe I paraphrased what I read a bit, but it’s a sentence I 100% stand by.

With everything around us, it’s easy to feel like rushing is the only way. You need to rush to fix your mindset, become a better entrepreneur, connect to yourself and everything in between.

You know what? I say ‘fuck it’ to that.

You don’t need to sprint anywhere, you have ALL the ingredients for success with you already.

And a big step towards an intentional, decolonized biz is giving yourself permission to SLOW DOWN to see what you already have.

When you run too fast, the world around you becomes a blur, and you end up chasing capitalism’s version of success, instead of your own.

 

3 – Stop looking for the right way to decolonize

In 2021, cancel culture can feel so real.

You want to be anti-capitalist, anti-opression, and anti-racist in the way you do your business, but you’re still waiting for someone to tell you the right way to do it.

You worry about saying the wrong things, not being inclusive enough, and the list goes on.

(That’s white supremacy culture at work telling you there’s only one right way, btw.)

As I’ve decolonized my business, I’ve learned that there is no right way, or wrong way.

Some folks will be further along in their journey, or value different things to you.

It doesn’t make you wrong. It just makes whatever they’re doing wrong for you.

If charging high-ticket feels right for you, but you spend all of your money ethically, that can be a decolonized, anti-capitalist business.

If you give a way a ton of things for free, that can also be right for you.

We need to let go of the colonizer’s need to be right – and start embracing our ancestral truth.

Thinking about how you can thrive financially and be anti-capitalist in your business? Check out this quick livestream I did here on the topic.

 

4 – Define your success outside of money & visibility

You and I both know that your #1 priority when you started your business wasn’t to get rich.

But for some reason, when you think about your business and what makes it “successful,” all you think about is money, mentions, and perception.

Why is that? (Spoiler alert: it’s capitalism. The answer is always capitalism.)

Decolonizing your business means refocusing on what’s ACTUALLY important to you and not your parents, society, or capitalism.

Serious question: What was the reason you got into this field? What kept you up at night, lit your soul on fire, and made you take those first baby entrepreneurial steps?

My guess is, if you’re reading this – it’s because you wanted to be of service and fuel the collective liberation of folks of color.

THAT is your Revolutionary Vision.

It’s a vision led by your intuition and inner knowing and not by any of the capitalist BS around us right now.

Want to go even deeper on this? Check out my podcast episode on Owning Your Revolutionary Vision on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts.

 

5 – Get Your Mind Right

I’m not going to lie to you – decolonizing your business isn’t easy.

It means going against standard business practices and advice from “successful” entrepreneurs.

It means being the first and the only to do things.

But if you do it, it also means feeling more fulfillment than you ever could have imagined in your business.

To get that fulfillment, you’re going to need a fuck ton of courage, and the tools to help you stay in alignment when you’re tempted by the pull of capitalism and traditional success.

A strong mindset helps – because when you have a solid mindset practice, you can identify unhelpful thoughts quickly, mark them as unhelpful, and find and create evidence that staying true to your decolonized path WILL work.

Curious about what those tools might look like? Check out this quick live training here.

Decolonizing your biz isn’t a one-size-fits-all journey.

All of the above are just steps that have worked for me and that I recommend to all of my clients. But, I encourage you to use these as a springboard to start your own revolutionary journey and get to your most decolonized state at your own pace.

However, if you’d like some help along the way (and a community cheering you on!), check out the Revolutionary Rising group coaching program!

It’s the most nurturing, supportive community of women and femmes of color entrepreneurs who are all committed to decolonization and collective liberation.

We teach you to slow down, anchor yourself into what you really want, and take a break from the capitalist madness around you so you can create a business that actually allows you to thrive – which, in case you were wondering, has very little to do with money.

You can also check out more of my thoughts on running a revolutionary business and interviews with other revolutionary WOC entrepreneurs through the Revolutionary Rising podcast!

Like I said, the process of decolonization isn’t easy. But every time you’re lost, remember there’s a whole community of folk out there who WANT you to succeed. Who believe you can.

I’m one of them. And I’ll be cheering you on.

Best of luck,
Gieselle

We Can’t Thrive Alone!

The best part about building a Revolutionary business is knowing that your fam’s got your back. Join the Revolutionary Entrepreneurs of Color Facebook group for WFOC entrepreneurs who want to run their businesses THEIR way.

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