Category Archives: Indigenous

The life changing aspect of Entrepreneurship for Indigenous Women,

When I reflect upon entrepreneurship and being an Indigenous woman, I can agree, it was a  game changer, for me. When we put our minds and our hearts together, to take those risks, do the things we love, and apply our skills. Removing the blocks, the barriers. This could apply to any of us. We all have mindset work. We all have individual areas we need to work on.

Removing barriers, the messaging that no longer serves us

The stories we have been told that are simply not true:

“your too old” to “we are all in our own time”

“your too broke” to “I am valuable”

“your too distracted” to “I am multi talented”

“you are not that type” to “I bring my own skill set”

“there is no funding” to “what is my true worth”

“you should be doing xxxx because everyone else is doing xxxx” to “this is how I roll”

“your not supposed to be an entrepreneur” to “I come from a long line of creative entrepreneurs”

“why don’t you get a real job” to “work is so many things”

Raising your vibe though entrepreneurship

Raising your vibe, and energy is necessary.

Knowing where you are aligned is much like going to places that support you, and your vision.  When I began to research my own business, not only did I have to search out people and mentors in my field, I deliberately sought out mentors. Sometimes this mean calling them, contacting them, finding them on Linked In, Facebook and other social media. I also lifted myself out of the parameters of the geography of where I lived. One of the best things I did was volunteer to present at a conference, and in exchange for my presentation, I received air fare and a hotel. I offered to also volunteer at the conference.

Going where your vibe is

Places can suck your energy, especially sometimes depending on what kind of person you are.

Knowing what you like? Being where you like to be. Taking comfort in knowing where you are has what you need.  Raising your belief, and your deeper sense of self, because it comes from that creative and feel good place, is honouring that place within you. For me being an entrepreneur and building that mindset meant I was able to receive. When I offered my skills and advices, it became a good relationship. Being an entrepreneur is about so many areas, and the multi layered experiences within, make it a place to really allow that creativity to shine through.

Stories

We’ve heard the stories: the entrepreneur who travelled across the country with one hundred dollars in spending money and a paid room. She wowed the audience. She made that connection. She came back to not only one, but two contracts awarded to her, enough to live off for a half of the year.

Why did this happen? The answer is simple: alignment and being true to what she could offer. Being true to what you have to give is why you attract the clients, and those who are interested in your work. Because you are being true to what and who you are. I can say that doing what you love, will attract more love, because that is the reciprocal nature of success.

Ideas on entrepreneurship

Everyone has their own ideas on what entrepreneurship means.

Because I am an Indigenous woman, and have had my own set of barriers: lack of access to funds, lack of access to culturally supportive mentoring. I realised that I had to unstuck myself.

I had to find out what my gold was. Not defining success by monetary values was an important aspect for me. Though knowing I’d need money to finance what I wanted to build.

I don’t claim to even truly know this, but I think what it means, is knowing what you feel is important and valuable. Perhaps the belief in self is the first step.

I knew when I faced unemployment, entrepreneurship was my much needed location, and go to place. I also knew it felt mysterious, overwhelming and at times, cool, and chic, but without a foundation, this would not work.

Knowing what was successful and tangible for me, was what I had to figure out. I am still ironing out what and how that looks. For example, what products can I offer: I often think writing a book would be a starting place. I have other areas I’d love to expand upon. Finding the time to do and design that is definitely on my list of things to do. Which means: time management, visioning and prep time, are very important here to mention as well.

As much as Indigenous women seem to be in the news, for the negative outcomes that we face, that burden our everyday lives, and that many of us deal with day to day.  I knew entrepreneurship and the building of my business, was a place for me to unshackle from those low vibes, a place for me to go. A creative safe space. Knowing what worked for me. For my family. For my life situation. Following my heart. Belief in my self. Lifting above the crushing lateral violence. The “I am not good enough” messages.

Ms. Audette writes in a 2012 article:

“The women entrepreneurs we see have more self-esteem. They are using their businesses to provide a healthy life for their families — and that is so much more than just a successful business. It helps keep families together, to provide an environment for their children to get an education, adds so much to the quality of life of aboriginal families.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Indigenous Knowledge Conference Keynote, Andrea Landry

Thunder Bay is so fortunate to have a local Anishinaabe scholar as the keynote of this fall’s Indigenous Knowledge Conference.

Andrea was more recently featured in a Canadian Parenting Magazine where she talked about “How I’m raising my daughter to be 100 percent, unapologetically Indigenous” where she shares her values and knowledge as she speaks about, Indigenous kinship practices (IKP) in Today’s Parent, and stories of her experience as a mother and her reflections and priorities in parenting.

In this article you can read further about her journey as a mother and her lineages. What strikes me the most about her story is the stories we all carry, about our lives, and our roles in passing tradition to our families, and in building Indigenous stories into mainstream magazines. She has accomplished in so many ways though I wanted to share this article, see more here,

It’s vital that we teach children that an Indigenous way of life isn’t seen as an alternative lifestyle but a priority. 

Fashion, body & story

515427f836c6c9b1c255e375d3e71399--native-indian-native-artBody image and who we are is a question each of us wakes up to each morning.

Am I where I want to be physically.

Do my thighs touch. Did they touch 20 years ago?

What or why does that matter?

After having three sons, I look at my body and think, on most days, what have I done.

I knew I was sinking and running out of time after my third was born and I was so tired, not only from raising them, and being a mom but from not knowing how to (A) separate from my children (B) how to exercise with my children.  (C) work.. work out.. raise children.. how does this balance itself?  Even though I nursed all my kids a super long time it never helped with the weight.  I nursed for less than a year for baby 1. Nursed 2.5 years for baby 2. Then 9 months later had baby 3, who I nursed for 5 years.  Private stories sure, context: I’ve given a lot, and in return, I have become, a different version of myself.

At this point in my life, and I do admit I have a few buckets of stored clothing, that are multiple sizes, I will keep them for now.

I’ve posed in various pictures over the years on the beach, in various bathing suites, and gotten my husband to take the photos. Who knows what he has thought, seeing his wife change shapes, mostly drastically.

Ive found old photos of me.. thinking wow. As we all do I am sure, of ourselves years ago. Though, remembering our beauty where we are now, is critical, for so many that one reasons. This is one reason why I still wear bathing suits and refuse to cover myself up. In fact, instead of flat out black, Ill go for colours. Ill do this for my sons. Ill do this for me. I want them to know they had a mom who was floral and loved vibrant things. I want them know the healthier versions of me but I want them to know me and that I love me for where and who I am now. That this version of me, is still me. That of course I want that former fit version. And Ill get there.

In the meantime I came across the Indigenous Goddess Gang and I think of goddesses all the time, what that means to be fully female and fully 100 percent into my feminine self. I’m glad to see other Indigenous women, unapologetic, and creatively loving themselves. It makes me feel content. It makes me feel love.

What does that look, feel, and sound like.

Yes, I have always taken  lot of care for me.

And, at other times, appeared to be trying and not as much, but life, priorities, spaces, and times.

“I must be a mermaid… I have no fear of depths and a great fear of shallow living.”

Do check out, this:
Indigenous Goddess Gang

Kokum Skirts