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Changing Course Newsletter!

Your Time is Now!

Were you able to join us for the first and possibly only Great Reset 2020 Work at What You Love virtual workshop? We had an amazing group of people participate; we were honored to have so many wonderful Change Seekers in attendance.

Have you been pondering whether it’s time for you to make a big change in your life and livelihood? What’s holding you back?

One of the questions that came up was, “can I be successful and still be “nice?” We all have images of successful people who are, quite frankly, not people we’d like to have in our social circle, much less our family! But success takes many different forms, and people don’t become monsters just because they achieve their goals (although it may seem that way from who we’re used to seeing held up as “role models”).

The consciousness of our society is evolving–becoming more values-based and ethical. People who are yearning for success don’t have to compromise themselves or become someone they don’t want to be. The opportunity exists to create your life and livelihood on your terms.

In the new Changing Course membership group, we want to nurture you and your dreams so that you can share your gifts and talents with the world. Now don’t get nervous. You don’t need to have a big idea or be front and center in a movement. Ordinary people doing ordinary things with purpose and passion can accomplish real change that results in extraordinary shifts in everyday life and in the culture as a whole.

When we let our lights shine, follow our dreams, and use our gifts and talents to serve the people who need us, we free ourselves to be who we truly are and to become the people we’re meant to be.

Whether you feel a slightest tug in your heart or a deep yearning in your soul to live your life in a different way, we invite you to become a charter lifetime member of Changing Course for a one-time fee of just $99!

Membership benefits include:

  • Unlimited access to the recording, workbook, and slides from the Great Reset 2020 Work at What You Love workshop – watch whenever and as many times as you wish!
  • Monthly Q&A and Brainstorming sessions
  • Life-Changing Book Club
  • Educational webinars
  • Private Facebook community of supportive fellow Change Seekers
  • Dream Team accountability groups for those who are ready to move forward
  • Exclusive access to 25 years of Changing Course archived content
  • NEW! Lifetime charter members receive a discount of $97 on all programs priced $197 or higher – forever!

We know that we’ll attract all the right people to be with us on this journey, and we hope you are one of them.

This opportunity is only available until midnight August 2, 2020 – this coming Sunday!

How long have you been waiting? How long have those dreams been simmering inside of you, just waiting for you to let them out? Your time is NOW! Join us today, invest in your future, and take the first step toward realizing the life and livelihood you’ve always wanted!

Changing Course Moving Forward

From the Changing Course Family:

Two-and-a-half years after the official end of slavery in the US, enslaved people in Texas learned on June 19th–Juneteenth–that they were free. Some 155 years later, we at Changing Course acknowledge that, as a nation and as individuals, we have a great deal of work to do to ensure true liberation for the Black community and to put an end to systemic racism.

As Valerie announced in the last issue of the newsletter, she has decided to retire and we—Kate Navarro Fessler and Arthurine Walker—will be leading Changing Course into the future. We know that it is a big responsibility and we are grateful to Valerie for her guidance and advice as we move forward. As this is our first newsletter, we’d like to take this opportunity to:

  • Briefly share our plans for Changing Course (more in future newsletters)
  • Hear from you about what you need from Changing Course
  • Share our journeys to leading Changing Course

Continue to Expect Great Content 

Changing Course will continue to provide great content:

  • This summer, we plan to continue the legacy Valerie began by working with her on the Work at What You Love The COVID-19 crisis has put many people out of work. The international protests against systemic racism has caused many people to re-evaluate their lives and their priorities. Therefore, as we approach the American Independence Day, we think it’s a great time to explore work that you love.

Add your name to the priority notification list for Work at What You Love.

  • You can also expect the Paid to Brainstorm/Profiting from Your Passion coach certification program later this year.
  • And for those of you who already have a business or business idea, we will be offering business development opportunities.

We are excited about leading Changing Course, but before we make big plans, we want to hear from you. Please complete a brief survey to share your thoughts and ideas about how Changing Course can be most useful to you.

Tribute to Valerie Young

We could not begin to tell you about ourselves until we first take a moment to pay tribute to Valerie Young. She had the foresight 25 years ago to start Changing Course, a business that is so relevant and needed today. While the last newsletter highlighted some of the things that she has accomplished with Changing Course, her real legacy is the people she has affected through her work. Those people include us, but here are a few highlights of what others are saying about how Valerie’s work affected their lives:

Valerie’s work showed me that I can create a career I’m passionate about and live the life I want. It was eye-opening for me, a missing link in my personal and professional journey! Thank you for all your work!
– Dominika Miernik

Valerie is a true example of a hard working woman that creates income on her own terms. Her teachings and inspirations were a huge push for me to think outside the job box & create an income and lifestyle that go hand in hand. I am forever grateful that our paths crossed!
– Jen Schulz

Not only did I have the pleasure of being Valerie’s student and having her as my mentor, but I was also honored to have been able to interview her on my previous online radio show, The Denice Rivera Show, “Girl On Fire!” two weeks before O Magazine called to have her be featured in their magazine. On my show, she inspired even more women to “think outside the box”, in order to create a life they love. I can’t say enough about Valerie, her passion to educate and help others, her drive, her wisdom, her compassion and this amazing legacy she has built, which will continue to inspire even more people. What an amazing human being! Wishing her the absolute BEST in her future endeavors and honored to have had her be a part of my journey!
– Denice Rivera

Working with Valerie has been a life changing experience in so many ways. Never have I been so challenged to take control of my life and what I really want to do with it. Everyday I live out what she has taught me as well as get my clients to “live their lives on purpose”.
– Leisa Good, Powerfully Purposed For Success

These are just a few among the thousands of people Valerie has affected through her work. As we step into the leadership at Changing Course, it just didn’t feel right to use the title Dreamer in Residence. That has always been Valerie. In honor of her 25 years of putting so many of us on a new path, we have decided that Valerie will be the-one-and-only Dreamer in Residence at Changing Course. We will take on new titles as we continue the Changing Course journey with you. Below, you can read about each of our journeys to leading Changing Course.

Arthurine’s Journey to Changing Course

I have three distinct memories about choosing a career. The first came at age six when my Aunt Carmen asked, “What do you plan to do after college?” My response was “I want to do something that helps people.” My six year old mind had limited knowledge of helping careers, so I suggested that I might become a doctor, lawyer, or teacher.

Fast forward 10 years, at age 16 as I was preparing to go to college, my mother told me “When you go to college, get a career not just a degree.” My mother had friends whose children had college degrees but could not find a job. Only much later did I think that my mother never suggested that I study something that I enjoyed or was passionate about that might lead to work that I would love doing.

The idea of loving my profession came during my senior year of college. I was a marketing major and we had to select a project around which we would create a promotional campaign. I wanted to create a campaign to encourage people to register as organ donors, but I was outvoted by my team and my professor. Instead, we worked on a project to launch a new luxury car. That was a pivotal experience for me. I made a promise to myself then that I would never again work at something that I didn’t care about deeply and that six year old girl inside me still cared deeply about doing something that would help people. For the past 30 years, I’ve kept that promise to my adult self and the six year old me.

It is one of the many reasons why, when Valerie decided to retire from Changing Course, that I expressed interest in stepping into the leadership. I believe that everyone should do work that they love and I’d like to help as many people as possible to achieve that. My friends call me a risk-taker because I’ve been willing to move to different states, try out new things, and basically live life on my own terms. For me, Changing Course is about doing work that you love and living life on your own terms.

I first learned about Changing Course in the late 1990’s from Barbara Winter’s newsletter. I had taken Barbara’s class and purchased her book, Making a Living Without a Job. The very idea of making a living without a job and having multiple streams of income intrigued me, though I wasn’t quite sure what I would do with it yet.

While I have worked in education, the nonprofit sector, government, and the private sector, all of my work has been about growing and sustaining nonprofit organizations, developing their leaders, promoting education, work skills development, and national service or working directly with education, youth development or teacher education programs. It has all been work that I’ve loved and work that helped people. And although I have been an employee, since 1999, I’ve also been an entrepreneur.

While working for the government agency that administers the AmeriCorps national service program, a nonprofit colleague, who had seen me facilitate a series of discussions about literacy, introduced me to a program manager at a Charter School association. They were looking for a consultant to facilitate strategic planning discussions with the teachers and administrators at Charter Schools in Washington, DC. This was exciting to me—I loved strategic planning, education, and facilitating. And it became my very first venture into entrepreneurship.

Since that time, I have consistently been engaged in some form of entrepreneurship. I’ve done work around helping people with college and career pursuits. I’ve focused on helping people to figure out how to use existing knowledge and skills in new ways that may be more aligned with their personal interests. And, after completing the Profiting from Your Passions coach training program (then called Outside the Job Box Certification Program) in 2007, I began helping people to figure out how to create their own jobs, doing something they would love, and creating the life they want to live. It continues to surprise me how many people don’t believe that work should be something that you love.

As I developed my knowledge of the nonprofit sector, I also began doing training and coaching with nonprofit leaders. I believe the business development work that I’ve done with these leaders can be transferred to helping those who want to Change Course to develop sound and sustainable business practices.

For a time, I worked under the business name, What is Your Marathon? If you have ever seen a marathon live, especially after the 20-mile mark, then you know how amazing it is to witness the power of human endurance. Building a business or changing course in any area of your life is rarely a sprint. Like a marathon, it takes time and effort. Each year, around the globe, thousands of people—young and old and people with differing abilities—complete the 26.2 mile course. A marathon demonstrates that you can do anything with the right preparation. Changing course is hard, but I would like to help you to go the distance.

Partnering with Kate to lead Changing Course into the future may be my “dream job” and just what the six year old me was looking for even though I didn’t know it at the time.

Live the Life of Your Dreams,
Arthurine Walker
Chief Changemaker

Kate’s Journey to Changing Course

I became a Changing Course Outside the Job Box (OTJB) Career Expert—later known as Profiting from Your Passions coach (PFYP)—with the class of 2007. Until that time, I worked in corporate jobs. I had worked at least one job since I was 16 years old, and I’d made a decent career for myself. But, I always felt like something was missing. I also felt like I wasn’t appreciated or given the opportunities I thought I deserved.

My career journey is long and convoluted, but I give credit to my last significant employer—a large internet company that was in its toddlerhood when I worked there. I was exposed to a lot of innovative thinking, and because there were not very many people in my group, I was able to expand my capabilities into numerous areas. The prevailing attitude was “if you think you can do it, and you want to do it, go for it!” I loved this energy and really loved my job … until … the company started to grow and put “structures” in place. In my case, that meant no more of the “can do” message, and more of the “we’ll hire someone with a higher salary to do that.” My “job box” began to narrow. I no longer felt that sense of contribution, of everyone working toward the same goal or the camaraderie of making things happen that seemed impossible to anyone on the outside looking in.

I wanted to make a difference. I wanted the freedom to make my own schedule and not be bound by the two or three weeks of vacation they allowed. I wanted to be paid well and have the right resources for the work I did, rather than to continually be told to “do more with less.”

That’s where I was in my life when the Changing Course training came along. When the student is ready, the teacher appears!

In some ways, I feel like I’ve been preparing to steward Changing Course to its next chapter for a long time. Since 2008, when I left my corporate job, I’ve immersed myself in learning more about different worlds and opportunities that I never knew existed through numerous coaching and educational programs involving everything from mindset to marketing.

I was raised to be a rule follower – eight years of Catholic school! Then it slowly dawned on me that the game was rigged. The “rules” were set by someone who did not necessarily have my best interest at heart. Career and/or job “rules” were not created to bring out the best in people, to help them grow and attain their highest potential. From job descriptions to performance reviews to pay grades, they were designed to reward those who made the rules and have everyone else working to support the dream of the rulemaker.

Then I stumbled on a quote from Katherine Hepburn, which became one of my favorites: “If you follow the rules, you miss all the fun.

My first brand as an OTJB/PYFP coach was “Play Your Own Game.” If others could make the rules, why couldn’t we? Instead of trying to change the rules, why not opt out of the game altogether?

I even designed a t-shirt for one of my clients with the slogan, which has become my mantra, “My Life, My Rules.”

My Big Why has been the freedom to make my own rules; to create the life that I want, regardless of what everybody thinks I should want. I want the freedom to do work I love, work with people I love and for whom I can make a difference, and to create prosperity and abundance for myself and my family. I want to own my time and my livelihood, and to contribute in the same spirit of “if you think you can do it, and you want to do it, go for it!”

And I want that for you too!

One of the most important things I learned is that navigating the transition from corporate employee to entrepreneur was like moving to a foreign country – I didn’t know the language or the customs, and it was a strange and wonderful journey, with lots of zigs and zags along the way! I learned that mindset is a big part of it, and I’m looking forward to introducing some mindset discussions to help you really become the “ruler” of your own life.

I am a big believer in multiple streams of income. In addition to Changing Course, I do consulting work for a large technology company. I love the work I do, and I love the people I work with. I control my time, and I work from home or wherever I happen to be in the world. At first, it felt like selling out my dream, because of some questionable coaching I had received about “burning the boats” so there’s no going back. But I realized I like the work, I wanted to keep a toe in that water, and quite frankly, it pays well! So once again, I decided to make my own rules. I can do both! I’ve helped numerous clients over the years create that sort of structure in their own businesses, when it’s appropriate, so they don’t have to give up work they love. They can just change the rules to suit their vision of what they want their life to look like.

I am committed to continuing and expanding the mission by bringing this freedom, flexibility, love for what you do, resilience, and the ability to create one or more streams of income that empowers you to live your ideal life to the Changing Course community.

Especially during these times, when everything seems to be in doubt and the old rules are being questioned in so many ways, I hope you’ll support us in doing our small part to help usher in a new way of life that brings more joy and prosperity to all. I’m optimistic about what the future will bring, and excited about being the co-pilot on the next phase of the amazing Changing Course journey!

Your Life, Your Rules!
Kate Navarro Fessler
Chief Empowerment Officer


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Notice to Our Valued Readers: Since 1995 the Changing Course Newsletter has been ad-free. However, we do need to keep the lights on. So some pre-screened resources reviewed or promoted may result in a referral fee. That said maintaining our 25+ year reputation means far more than making a few bucks promoting stuff we don’t believe in. Be assured that we only endorse products, people, or resources we know to be of value to our readers and never recommend anything we either have not or would not personally use ourselves. As an Amazon Associate, Changing Course earns from qualifying purchases.

Help People to Solve a Problem Created by COVID-19

Part 3 of Why is This a Great Time to Start A Business?

Across the globe, people are quarantined, self-isolating, social distancing, or operating under ‘stay at home’ orders. This has left many people feeling isolated and alone. Just because you are self-isolating, doesn’t mean you need to be lonely.

Join other Changing Course fans on the Changing Course Facebook page to discuss what you’ve been doing with your time at home.

In Part 1 of this series, we discussed what you can do with any additional time you may have due to start a business.

In Part 2, we discussed ways that you can build relationships with your potential customers.

In this final piece of the three-part series, we will explore business opportunities created by the COVID-19 pandemic.

What issues or problems are people currently facing as a result of COVID-19 that a business can address?

Many people are making and donating masks for doctors, nurses and other health care workers and performing other volunteer acts such as food and medicine deliveries to vulnerable neighbors.

We encourage you to join these voluntary efforts, if you can, while also exploring potential business opportunities for people experiencing challenges. For example:

  • People experiencing social isolation: Is there an opportunity to provide structured online activities for people who are feeling isolated? Could you create groups of people with similar interests and then organize online or phone activities for different days of the week.
    While some people may be experiencing social isolation as a result of COVID-19, this is an ongoing issue that could use a long-term way to address it.
  • People adopting animals to combat isolation will need assistance training their new companions and preparing them for a time when their new parents return to work. Here is how one animal trainer is helping people with new canine companions by offering free Homeschool the Dog training.
  • Parents who are homeschooling could use online educational support. In addition, they are looking for structured online activities for kids outside of the homeschooling hours.
    While students will go back to school, structured activities that are fun and keep youth occupied in positive ways is an ongoing need for many parents.
  • People who are now cooking at home, who generally eat out, might enjoy live, real-time cooking classes, where they can ask questions as they prepare the meal of the day.
  • DIYers with time for home projects could benefit from live classes on how to address common household projects or repairs.
    While some of these things may exist on YouTube, people are looking for a way to connect to a live person and to be able to ask questions when they are unsure.
  • Overextended healthcare workers who must still go to work and may even need to work extra shifts, may need a personal concierge who can take care of grocery shopping, laundry, and other necessities.
    What products or services might essential workers need that you can provide or arrange for on their behalf?
  • People who need extra income: One of the sad realities of the COVID-19 pandemic is the number of people who have been laid off or furloughed during this crisis. Some will return to work after the crisis is over and others will be looking for new ways to earn an income.
    Are you good at brainstorming? Can you help people to brainstorm ways that they can make extra income or create their own income?
    If you are interested in helping others to identify ways to create income, Changing Course will be offering the Profiting from Your Passion career coach training this summer. Add your name to the waiting list.

Texas Man Provides Critical Support During COVID-19 Crisis

A man in Texas is using his garage to make helmets that are used as an alternative to ventilators—a critical tool in the treatment of breathing problems and pneumonia resulting from COVID-19.

He was making the helmets prior to the pandemic, but has increased his production to keep up with the demand for the helmets by hospitals across the country.

He has offered to share the instructions on how to make these devices for free to anyone who wants to begin making them.

Have you created a business to address a problem resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic? Join the Changing Course Facebook page to share your ideas for how we can help during these difficult times.

“Every problem has a solution. You just have to be creative enough to find it.” Travis Kalanick, Co-founder and former CEO, Uber

Utilize Your Clients’ Free Time to Engage Them

From the Changing Course Team

Before we jump into Part 2, all of us at Changing Course would like to send a special thank you to all of the essential workers, who are keeping us going during these difficult times.

To those who work in health care; grocery stores; mail and package handling and carriers; food service and food delivery; police, fire fighters, EMTs; transportation; sanitation; financial service workers; all those rarely seen people who clean and sanitize hospitals, restaurants, grocery stores and public transportation, and so many other unnamed, we are grateful for all that you do.

Why is This a Great Time to Start A Business?

Part 2: Utilize Your Clients’ Free Time to Engage Them

Now, to get back to why this is a great time to start a business…In Part 1 of this series, we discussed some of the steps you can take to start a business, using the additional time you have now, if you are at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, entrepreneurs are not the only ones at home.

Your Potential Clients Have Extra Time Also.

That makes it a great time to reach out to them.

For many of you, marketing to your potential clients can be a scary thing. You might be thinking, ‘how do I know that they even want what I have to share?’ Well, you can ask.

You are doing a disservice to those who need your product or service by keeping it to yourself.

Here are a few things you can do now to build a relationship with your potential clients.

  • Get Clear on the Problem You are Solving. You must clearly identify the problem(s) that your product or service can solve and how it will solve the problem.
  • Research Your Target Audience. Who needs what you have, i.e. Who has the problem that you can solve? Why should they be interested in your product or service?
  • Identify How You Will Reach Your Audience. Today, social media is an important tool for reaching various audiences. Which platform does your audience use?
  • Get to Know Your Potential Clients’ Needs. Engage with your potential clients in social media groups; ask questions, share your knowledge, share articles or blogs on related topics to generate discussion.

    Post to your public social media accounts using hashtags that are commonly used among people with an interest in your product, service, or topic area.

    Remember that social media is about engagement and relationship building and not just to announce things that you want to share.

  • Build Your Mailing List and Your Following. As you get to know your potential clients, create and offer them useful content. Provide a link to a website where they can enter an email address in order to download or receive content by email.

    You can also use paid ads that link to your website to receive the free content.Provide opportunities for those on your email list to follow you on social media and for your social media followers to join your email list.

  • Find Out How Your Business Can Best Serve Them. Consider using a brief online survey to find out how you can best serve their needs through your business. This will allow you to target your offerings to meet their needs.
  • Continue Reaching Out to Them. Communicate with your list by providing useful content on a regular basis, but do not flood their email boxes. This will help in building relationships, engaging them, and learning more about their needs so that you may tailor a future offer.
  • Teach Them Something New – Whether your business involves a product or service, you can teach your potential clients a new way to use your product or service while showing them how your product or service will help to solve their problem. recently ran an article entitled How These Female Entrepreneurs are Using Technology to Thrive Amidst COVID-19. While the article focuses on women who already have active businesses, it is also a great time to use technology to start a new business.

There is a quote from an old TV show that goes, “There is a lot of energy in unfulfilled desires.”

Do not let your desire to start a business go unfulfilled. Use that energy to start your business. Why not start today?

Coming Soon: Why This is a Great Time to Start a Business Part 3: Help Solve a Problem Created by COVID-19.

Why is This a Great Time to Start A Business?

Part 1: Utilize Your New Found Time to Build Your Business

The uncertainty of life in the time of COVID-19 has left many of us wondering what’s next for our work, our kids, and our lives. On the one hand, the experience can be quite isolating. On the other hand, we know that people across the globe are experiencing the same thing—so we are truly all in this together.

Why are these uncertain times a great time to start a new business or dust off one that you may have started in the past, but have not operated for a while?

The biggest reason: You Have the Time.

Across the globe, people are living under stay at home orders. Even if you are able to work from home, you are saving time by not commuting and that time may be used to create your new business. If you are staying at home, but not able to do your job from there, you may have even more time to work on developing a business. What can you do with this extra time to create a new business:

  • Brainstorm Business Ideas – if you don’t already have a business in mind, this is the time to think about your knowledge, interests, passions, and skills that could make a great business. If you already have a business idea, this would be a great time to map out the various pieces of that business idea to turn it into a reality.

  • Develop Your Business Plan or Map – Depending on the type of business that you want to start, you may need a full business plan or just a chart that lists your business goals and the strategies, activities, deadlines, and resources needed to accomplish each goal. Create your plan and identify the steps that you can take right now.
  • Learn Something New – Do you have an interest that you think could make a great business, if only you had more knowledge or skills in that interest area? This may be the time to gain that new knowledge or learn those new skills.
  • Utilize Social Media – While using social media to connect with family and friends has become part of our daily lives, this is an opportunity to practice using social media to market your business or business idea. Run a social media ad or ask your connections on social media about their need for a great product or service. You can test the idea without even telling family and friends that it’s your new business idea.Learn how to use social media for your business:
    • Use Facebook to Market Your Business
    • Use Instagram to Market Your Business
    • Use Twitter to Market Your Business

  • Develop Content – Will your business share information with your customers? This is the time to develop advance content. This includes articles, newsletters, blogs, and social media posts.
  • Learn New Technology – During this COVID-19 pandemic, and beyond it, technology is critical to delivering services as well as connecting people to products and services. You may need to learn various technologies in order to build your mailing list, do outreach to potential clients, or push out new offers to potential customers.
  • Build a Website – These days, it is difficult to run a business without having a web presence. Some groups are successfully doing that through social media. Still, others find great benefits to having a website that can fully explain the products or services offered by your business.

There is a message that is making its way around the Internet. It says: ‘If you don’t come out of this quarantine with a new skill, your side hustle started, or more knowledge, you never lacked time, you lacked discipline.

Now that you have more time, do you have the discipline to start your business?

Read Part 2 Why This is a Great Time to Start a Business: Utilize Your Clients’ Time to Engage Them

P.S. Sara Blakely of Spanx is opening up applications for biz grants for female entrepreneurs. $5k for 1000 businesses.

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A New Direction

I decided to take the Work @ What You Love Workshop and also work one-on-one with Valerie. The workshop explored so many unusual and unexpected solutions to my specific questions. I made so many new connections to what clearly works for me in crea...

Julia Raymond
Curvology Studio

Read More Testimonials »

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