Back to School, Back to Work

Welcome, you beautiful MAWBsters, to the MAWBBlog!  It’s September, the kids are back in  school, and the weather is holding out and staying beautiful.  We may have wound down a bit for the summer, but we are back with our regularly scheduled programming.  And, may I add, bigger and better than ever! We had 71 business women register for this Meet Up with 65 in attendance. Not only are we continuing with our monthly Daytime Meetups, but Christine is hard at work organizing monthly Evening Meetups, lining up speakers and activities, and trying to find venues using the resources provided by fellow MAWBsters.  It is full-on collaboration, ladies! Stay tuned for more information. Here are dates we have book as of the September 18th Meet Up.

Each month I recap the monthly Meet Ups, as well as some of the other in-person MAWB events, for all the members who are unable to attend. So, although the Facebook group is incredibly active (more about that later), sometimes life and other obligations make it hard to get out to the events. This blog is meant to keep everyone involved, virtually.

Welcome To The MAWB!

The MAWB is Mississauga and Area Women in Business, a networking group for women entrepreneurs from Mississauga and the surrounding communities. Whether you’re a solopreneur, an employee of a larger organization looking to expand your network, or someone with an MLM as a side hustle or your main source of income, MAWBsters, as we refer to ourselves, come together to support and encourage each other, share ideas, and foster real relationships amongst members.  Our group’s sensibility, as established by our Admin and MAWBBoss, Christine Hull, is that people will do business with those they Know, Like, and Trust.  While this is an approach that is promoted by many networking groups, it is fully embraced by the MAWB.  The opening networking consists of a lot of hugs and a lot of laughter amongst friends.

Most of the activity between members takes place online through the MAWB Facebook Group.  The Facebook Group follows theme days, which are posted every morning. While you do get the opportunity to promote your business, the idea is to get to know your fellow MAWBsters as people first, engage with each other, and meet in person for coffee/not-coffee dates.  Theme days include Marketing Monday, Welcome Wednesday, and Social Saturday. You can find the whole list on the MAWB Facebook Page in the Files tab, or click here to view the infographic.

So, as a fair warning to all the newbies out there, don’t be alarmed if someone you don’t know reaches out to you and says, “Hey, you look cool.  Let’s have coffee.” This is just how we roll.

Switcheroo

Usually Chrisitne jumps right in with the agenda, a run down of MAWB activity, but today she pulled a switcheroo and asked people to volunteer their 10-second success stories.  This is simply jumping up and telling the group something great that happened to you over the last few weeks.  Honestly, I tried to catch everyone, but it was so rapid fire i couldn’t keep up. My apologies if I missed your great news in my list, but congratulations on that thing, you!

  • Christine Hull got a paid speaking gig, for this very afternoon, in front of 150 people
  • Amber Dinda has been holding porch sign workshops and they have been selling out so quickly she has to keep adding more
  • Jamie Grant has signed the lease and opened Zed Holistic Touch Wellness Centre on Lakeshore Road in Oakville
  • Bhie Beltran has signed a contract with someone to sell her Terrah Essentials soaps in their shop
  • Dr Lisa Ramsackal has had her clinic, INNOVA, in Streetsville nominated for two best business awards by the MBOT
  • Donna Pinsonneault is hosting a Wellness Event at She’s Got Leggz, with vendors and speakers, and ticket sales have been going well
  • Judy Lee just hosted a successful Violence Against Women awareness panel last weekend, and there were 3 MAWBsters on the panel
  • Madelaine Golec, from ECO Physiotherapy, is launching a networking group for physiotherapists, and they will be hosting their first event soon
  • Rena Anderson is going back to school

I know I missed some,  I am so sorry, If you think saying something in 10 seconds is tough, try taking notes!

Math Quiz, Just for me

We’ve  had over 66 new members join the MAWB since the last meeting, and there were 18 first-timers at the meeting. A first-timer isn’t necessarily a newly joined member.  Sometimes someone is active on the Facebook page for months before they can actually make it to a Meetup. These new members take our numbers up to 1830 fierce, female entrepreneurs.   There were 1569 active members on the Page since the August meeting. The participation rate was at 86%. This tells us the newcomers are jumping right in and engaging with the group, which is fantastic!  This is a phenomenal accomplishment, and it really illustrates the bonds being forged here. It’s too bad Facebook doesn’t keep track of coffee dates—we could break their metrics algorithm on that one!

We’re going to take some time to mention the other groups the MAWB supports.  There is the MAWB Book Club, moderated by our Cake Lady, Sadaf Khalid Palijo, and visual artist extraordinaire, Shelley Foster.  This month they are reading the book The Happiness Advantage, by Shawn Achor. Discussions take place both online and in person, and discussion points are posted in the group throughout the month.  If you’re interested in participating, please PM Shelley or Sadaf, as this is a Closed group.

There is also the MAWB Get Fit group, which supports members in their efforts to live a healthy lifestyle.  They have weekly challenges, this week’s challenge being to meditate for 10 minutes every day.  Previous challenges have involved increasing water intake and cutting out sugar. Jenn Hook is the moderator of this group, and again, if you are interested in participating, please contact Jenn via PM as it is a Closed group.

Upcoming Events

Other dates to keep in mind are as follows.  Please make note in your calendars, and remember to register.  Saying you’re going on Facebook does not hold your place. You must register and make your payment.  The meetings fill up fast, so please refer to the Events tab on the Facebook Group Page for full details and registration form:

  • October 16, Daytime Meetup
  • November 20, Daytime Meetup
  • December 20, Daytime Potluck Meetup and Lunch
  • May 22-24, 2020, MAWB Retreat 2020

MUSKOKA, BABY!

In the anticipatory build-up period to the retreat weekend, there is a Meet-and-Greet Potluck Dinner for registrants on September 29.  Full details are available in the private group for registered attendees. There is still room, although we are more than 50% booked. The second instalment is due on October 15, for this incredibly reasonably priced, information-packed weekend of business development and personal improvement.  If you are interested and want to know more, please contact one of the Retreat Committee members, Carrie Whiteduck, Donna Smith-Major, Farrah Murray Snyed, Amber Schmidt Dinda, or Jenn Hook.

Details for the 2020 MAWB Retreat are as follows:  It is being held at the Severn Lodge in Muskoka, the weekend of May 22–24, and, ladies, we will have the run of the place.  There is going to be a marketplace, and the first 20 registrants were given a vendor table as an early-registration bonus. The price is $475/person based on a double occupancy room (which means two beds with one person in each, not one bed with two people), but if you want to solo it in a room, you can do so for $650.  You will receive a receipt to use or tax purposes , and the fee is all inclusive except for your adult beverages.

There will be plenty of MAWB activity taking place: workshops––there were 23 in April, but I’m sure there will be many more this time because it is a larger facility and we will have up to 90 MAWBsters there; shared mealtimes; parties; maybe a Polar Bear Dip in the lake, who knows?  All I know for sure is that I am already registered and I can’t wait! And, as a perk of early registration, I get early check in at the resort––1:00 instead of 4:00, so I can pre-game the Friday night Welcome Party. Woohoo!

MAWB SPA-LA-DAY Success

The MAW Spa-La-Day event held August 19th, 2109 was a big success, with 24 vendors, and at least 75 attendees.  At the end there were just people wandering into the room, checking things out. Several women her today were there that night, myself included.  I, personally, received three treatments: Osteopathy from Jackelyn Hurtado, Foot Reflexology from Jamie Grant, and Facial Reflexology from Gina Bello, who was the architect of the evening.  I also tried the delicious Spa Water provided by Kandice Lee Doucette, from Epicure.  As Christine said, it’s always good to grateful and share your thanks. So thank you, Spa-La-Day ladies, for providing such wonderful services, on such a wonderful night.  The question is already being asked: When is the next one? And now there’s an answer: mid-February there is going to be a Galentine’s Spa Day! Keep your eyes open for more details. Our event was Snap’d, check out the write up and pictures on the https://northmississauga.snapd.com/events/view/1269242

2-Minute Meet and Greet

Christine introduced a micro breakout session, where we spent 2 minutes introducing ourselves to our neighbour.  The only thing I have to say about this is IT GOT SO LOUD SO FAST!!!

Who’s at the Door?

Before moving on to our group photo and the speaker for the day, there were door prizes to give away.  Every meeting a few ladies who generously donate a door prize are given a few minutes to speak about themselves and their businesses before randomly choosing a winner.  If you are interested in donating a door prize for a meeting, please contact Christine Hull via PM to discuss it. The number of door prizes is limited and the donors are chosen in advance so we are not overrun with so many we can’t hold the meeting—MAWBsters are a generous bunch. This meeting we had three door prizes.

  • Madalaine Golec, from ECO Physiotherapy,  is a pelvic floor physiotherapist. To quote her: “Show your lady parts some love!”  And, just to be clear, because she had a very dramatic pause in the middle of that sentence, she is not asking you to show your lady parts, just to show them some love.  Joyce Cameron, a first-timer and realtor at Keller Williams, won a free pelvic health assessment.
  • Vicky Harrison, a Nygard stylist, provided a very stylish coat and jewellery, won by Helen Snell
  • Helen Snell, from Arbonne provided a skincare pack, won by Amber Dinda. The takeaway for all of us from Helen was this: “Do you think about the things you put on your body as much as the things you put in your body?’

…Aaaannnddd…break for the group photo, snacks, and perhaps a visit to the ladies room.

Speaker Presentation:  Cheryl Martin

From Procrastination into Powerful Action was the topic of Cheryl’s presentation.  Cheryl is a Resiliency Coach and owner of Soul Spark Transformations and Coaching.  She started with a pretty powerful statement:

“We’ve hit a place where we have things we have to do in our business but we put them off,
and they’re usually the things that get us paid, so it’s a problem.”

I don’t know about you all, but I feel this. 

She went on to explain the three parts of the brain:

  • The Amygdala is the lizard brain and is controls fight or flight reactions
  • The Limbic brain controls emotions and motivation
  • The NeoCortex is the rational, goal setter centre

Unfortunately, the NeoCortex, the conscious part of your brain controls very little.  The Unconscious, made up of the amygdala and the limbic, runs the show—it is 90% of who we are.  Your unconscious mind stores everything you’ve ever done, said, decided, experienced, and it stores it in your memory at the age you experienced it, with the knowledge and maturity level you have at that age.  We are programmed to survive, not thrive, and our “Monkey Mind” prevents us from leaving our “Safe Box”. It sabotages you every time you try to do anything outside your comfort zone.

Now, Cheryl wasn’t procrastinating while she was providing this information, she was setting the scene for us so we can actually tell the difference between protective behaviours and sabotaging ones.  

Subconscious protective behaviours, which tell us we need to slow down, prevent us from meeting our goals, and despite the fact that we are taking action, we are exhausted, overwhelmed and confused.  Sabotaging actions include making excuses, taking no action to make changes, getting angry, and blaming others. 

The solution, according to Cheryl, is to take action by anchoring your circle of power.  She then took us through an exercise to anchor our circle of power. (Watch it here.) She asked us to own our CourageInspiration, and Motivation by using a memory of a time when these feelings were exceptionally strong for us.  We then had to go back as if we were there in the moment and allow the emotion to build, then step into an imaginary circle.  As the emotion peaks, step back out of the circle and anchor it. Repeat for each of the emotions, then pick up the circle, condense it, and store it on your finger like a ring so you can draw on it anytime you need it.

I know I have not done the power of Cheryl’s presentation justice, so please book a coffee date with Cheryl so she can explain what she does in more detail for you.  She has a lot of knowledge and experience and is looking to share it.

Where you can find Cheryl online…

Website: soulsparksisters.ca

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SoulSparkCoachCheryl

instagram; https://www.instagram.com/cherylgoncalves

Breakout Before We Break Out

The final 15 or so minutes were spent getting to know the ladies we were sitting with.  I was grouped with some familiar faces and some new ones. Sadaf Kahlid Palijo, the Cake Lady, Cheryl Martin, our illustrious speaker today, Cathy Bochnak, Nygard Stylist, and I, were grouped with newbies Shelly Bandali, a VA, and Anna Gurevich, a lawyer.  We introduced ourselves and then discussed and brainstormed Q4 strategies and goals.  As we chit chatted and shared goals and ideas, we developed some new bonds and reinforced existing ones.  And that’s what happens at every MAWB Meetup. Bonds are formed, friendships are forged. It’s like a tree taking root.  Soon we will be like a giant redwood, deeply rooted, reaching for the stars, with an expansive canopy, encompassing women everywhere.  What a great image. Someone needs to paint that.

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