Breaking the Mold: Make Your Own Rules, Embrace Creativity and Be Wildly Successful with Leonie D

A must-listen for anyone looking for inspiration and a different perspective on running an online business with Leonie Dawson.

Want to shake things up and operate outside the norm?

This episode is a must-listen for anyone looking for inspiration and a different perspective on running an online business.

Leonie Dawson is a wild, creative, and neurodiverse entrepreneur who's been running an online business since 2002. In this podcast episode, Leonie shares her journey to finding her voice and embracing vulnerability. She talks about the intersection between creativity and healing, and viewing your work as a playground to retreat to when things get tough.

Her authenticity and vulnerability are refreshing and her wild personality is sure to captivate and intrigue - a refreshing change from those trying to fit into a box.

Connect with Leonie:

Purchase Leonie’s Courses and Workbooks:

Brilliant Biz & Life Academy:

My Brilliant Year Workbooks:

Disclosure: The information above contain affiliate links, meaning I receive a commission if you decide to make a purchase through my links, at no cost to you.

Join the email list and receive 25 Conversation Starters for Genuine Connections


(04:56) Sustaining yourself when you’re going through a time when you’re not feeling up to it.

(09:53) Creating courses because you want to, not because you need them.

(16:15) How taking time off of social media gave Leonie you the space to figure out how to best use it later.

(21:28) How to get yourself to a place where you’re only doing what you love.

(26:14) Creating the space for you to have those innovative creative thoughts.

(37:47) The energy of expansion.

(41:43) Evaluating and sorting your priorities using yyour natural curiosity.



people, feel, business, create, social media, years, love, hours, share, shit, fucking, courses, person, week, good, fun, fuck, realised, part time assistant, idea


Leonie Dawson, Paula Shepherd

Paula Shepherd 00:01

Hi, I'm Paula Shepherd, I went to college to get a good job and make a lot of money. Back then, no one talked about doing what you love. And while I successfully climbed the corporate ladder, I felt like there was something missing. So I left the seemingly comfortable corporate world at 40 years old for the freedom of full time entrepreneurship. Today, I get to help ambitious women go from entrepreneur to competent CEO of their lives and businesses. I created this podcast to share what I've learned with you to make your journey just a little easier, and to connect you with other incredible business owners who took a chance on themselves and who they are becoming. So whether you're just getting started, are all in or just want to hear friendly voice. Come on in and sit with us. Now, let's dive in. All right. Hey, hey, welcome to another episode of the competence Sessions. Today. I have an amazing guest, you're going to be blown away by her. Her name is Leonie Dawson. Liana is a international best selling author with 500,000 books in use and an award winning entrepreneur, she's created $13 million in revenue, while only working 10 hours a week, and is proudly neuro divergent. I was actually drawn to her when I decided that I wanted to say goodbye to social media, and just lean into real relationships. And so I am thrilled to be able to have her here to answer all of her questions about her creativity, her neuro divergence and how she is killing it in business. So welcome to the show, Leone.

Leonie Dawson 01:47

Oh, fine. It's just so nice to be here.

Paula Shepherd 01:51

All right, so you have done well, first of all, it's 630. In the morning, let's just, we're just going to call that out at 630. In the morning, for her, it is almost 230. It's 230 in the afternoon here in Austin, Texas. And she is still bright eyed and bushy tailed. So excited about that. There are some things that I've noticed over the course of time paying attention to you one, you're incredibly vulnerable. It looks like you hold nothing back in what you do what you say whether it's in motherhood, or in business, and just life in general. And I love that about you, because so many people hide that it's one of the reasons why social media felt like a farce to me, can you share a little bit about what it looked like maybe at the beginning of your business, the pieces and parts that maybe we don't, didn't see up until now?

Leonie Dawson 02:36

Sure. It's like, it's been an evolving journey for me. And I'm not just like a 24/7 Vulnerability machine, on the internet, because that is cold, using the internet as your therapist. And instead, I discovered over many years, I've been you know, I've been running an online business now since 2002 1001 2002. So it's coming up on two decades of this, I've been blogging since 2004. And it's really finding my way and finding my voice. But most importantly, for me was really paying, like finding and keeping the love for it, you know, there's, there's no way you can keep up that amount of enthusiasm for something unless you are loving what you're doing and finding the real joy in creating and sharing. So I think early on, I like to share like the juicy bits, the good bits, the insights, and it was, it was more difficult for me to share the painful parts. And I remember that was a real turning point for me when I was experiencing postnatal depression and anxiety with my when I had my first child, and that's now nearly 13 years ago. And I was just in such an awful place. I just felt horrid. And I remember friends saying to me, you know, at some point, when you're over this, you're going to write about it. And I was like, No, lady, like, I am going to tell people how bad this is like, that is disgusting. And she was like, at some point, you might feel comfortable. And I think it took you know at least another six months or a year of recovery, to get to a place where I was actually healed within myself and doing much, much better. Before I realised like Oh, I do actually want to share about this and I did it because I felt very protective over other mothers and for anyone who was experiencing that level of pain. I really wanted to make sure that they knew that they weren't alone in that. So I wrote about it. And it was it felt so scary. Ready to do that. But it was hugely healing for me to do it. And then when I did share it publicly, the responses I got from people were just stunning. And even now, people will go back and read my blog in entirety, entirety. And there'll be like, Oh, you'll plug some parts that have depression or anxiety, you know, just I didn't, I thought I was the only one, you know. And that brings me so much joy. And so I, it's now just a commitment of mine when bad shit happens when I am through it a bit and healed and got some some wisdom to share, or even just like the Hey, this is my story of how much that socked that I'll offer it up to the world.

Paula Shepherd 05:48

I love that. And when you're going through something like that, it's really difficult, I think, well, I know. And I've experienced myself as a business owner, especially if you are a solopreneur. Or you have just kind of a small but mighty team, maybe just some people who are doing some things here and there. But you're the creator, you're doing the majority of the stuff, and you're just not feeling up to doing that. What are some ways that you've sustained yourself in those moments, maybe in the beginning, when you weren't at the capacity of the revenue numbers that you are right now, to continue on? Even when it felt really scary to pause?

Leonie Dawson 06:23

You know, for me, the creating has always been just healing for me. So even if I'm not talking about the shit out, going through, being able to turn up and go, Okay, what am I want to make this week? What do I want to write about this week? How what could help people this week, it's felt like therapy in itself, honestly, like, my business, I, it's always felt like, the little soft playground that I could retreat to when shit gets awful. And I get to make stuff. And that's just such a privilege.

Paula Shepherd 07:00

Well, and what you just said was so contrary to what almost anyone else I hear would say is that it was you showed up and said, What can I do? What can I create for someone else. So even in that moment of feeling really, like feeling a lot of pain, you were still showing up in a state of service, which is, I mean, really, really admirable. Most people aren't doing that they're caught up in the fear of, if I don't do x, then y and you are going, how can I continue to create and share and pour into all of these people, which is, I guess, an amazing way to sustain yourself in life, not just in business.

Leonie Dawson 07:39

Yeah, and it's also like, it's, it, it's really selfish as well, because, like, in a beautiful way, because I know that that's what makes me feel good. And also, I can pretend like the hours I turn up to work, I can pretend that she's not bad. You know, like, it's a beautiful therapy thing to go like, Oh, I get two hours off of thinking about this awful fucking thing that's happening. I could just do.

Paula Shepherd 08:10

That's a great tip. That is a really great holiday, just kind of pretend for a moment, you know, here I am. And I'm showing up to work and I'm this, you know, powerful person, or the super creative person. And this isn't happening in my life, and just kind of letting that go if you're able to in that moment. I know that's not possible for everyone. But that's incredible. Which leads me to not only do you create, but what I love most, I think what I'm drawn to most about you is this idea of really not putting yourself inside of a box. So in this world, where people are going to niche down niche down niche down, pick the industry, do the thing, get the steps got to this, you're like, fuck that. Like, it's like that mean, you know, people are throwing the papers everywhere, and you're like, I'm gonna show you, I'm just gonna create what feels really good for me. And then and then we're just going to have this hodgepodge of stuff that is amazing and really helpful to all of these people. And they're coming to you because they trust you, and you're serving them. And it's not a This isn't you requiring them to come in and you can you're only working with this kind of person necessarily. And I like did you ever feel the pressure to niche down or was that always something that you were totally resistant to?

Leonie Dawson 09:23

Yeah, look, I, every time I come across that and you know, I've come across it so many times in 20 years now I'd like Right, okay, maybe I should try that. And then I just, I can't it's not inside me and my niche is anyone who likes his personality. Right? And you know, my red velvet rope. The thing that stops people from coming into my business is people who don't like this personality. Like it's like, you know, the people are either gonna have to two reactions like they're just gonna be like, Oh my God, this chick she is my person. Yes. And then some people are just like, what is happening here? Like, what? Buck? It's fine bikes, like, there's like so many millions of beige business coaches out there that you can go find who are not going to swear like a fucking sailor and who are not going to be, you know, kind of neurodiverse and wild and creative and just make random shit. So yeah, I'm very happy for people to make a decision based off my personality. And then the people who love my personality, I've got a big range of offerings that they may loves, and maybe the right thing for them. And or it may be like, oh, there's only this part, this part, this part, like, cool, whatever, I don't care, because I've got so much to create, I think I've created we'd have to be heading near towards 200 courses and workshops now. Yeah. And like, I'm not stopping anytime soon, there's gonna be something that they like,

Paula Shepherd 11:02

oh, but but you're creating it. Because you see, you will want you're enjoying creating them. And then to you're obviously hearing that there's some kind of a need for it. But it almost feels like you're creating it because you want to, and then the need is coming to you, which is people almost I mean, I know I've purchased courses from you, and I'm an affiliate for you. And I've looked before and gone, oh, I didn't know I needed that. But now that I'm looking at that, I probably actually really do need that. And I've had that experience, where you're not this stuffy in a box person, you're gonna get this wild, fun personality, which so many of us are just stuffing inside of our bodies, and we're trying to just be what everybody else wants us to be. Which, again, social media. Let's talk about that for a second. Because I know that you've you pivoted and now you're coming back there, but I found you because I said, I'm done. I want people to thrive without living on social media. And somebody said, Oh, do you know Leone, Dawson? And I said, No, I don't? Well, now I do. But the only reason I did was because I said, oh, there's got to be a way to do this. Without this. This there it existed before, you know, businesses existed and thrived before this. This isn't a necessity. And then there was someone else, like someone else who wasn't in their 60s saying, See, I did it, I did it. And I'm not on here. So what what made you go done not going to be here shifting over off of social media, and I'm still going to be wildly successful.

Leonie Dawson 12:32

I had no idea at the beginning of 2021. To do like 21 day challenges of all the different like habits and experiences I wanted to try out. But as an you're a divergent person, I couldn't commit to them permanently. Right, I was just like, I can only do 21 days. Plus, it's a novelty, I'll get stars if I finish each challenge. You know, like, that really appeals to me. So I wrote a list of all the, like, the experiences I wanted to try for 21 days. And, you know, not using social media for 21 days was it was, you know, like high on the list. And I thought, fuck, I'll start with that one, because that sounds really fun. And I felt really anxious doing that, which was further proof that I needed to do it. And that was really funny to me, because I'd already taken a year off social media previously. And, you know, I didn't feel Yeah, like, I felt like quite free in my own way. But the addiction was fairly high at that point. So I was like, right, 21 days, let's do it. And I did you know, I did 21 days, but really quickly, I realised like, Oh, I I don't want this to be 21 days, I want this to be long term. This is feeling so great in my brain. And I thought you know what, it'd be really cool experiment to try out a business, that's an online business that's not on social media. And, you know, looking at all the 1000s of different ways that I could market my business. And, you know, I looked at my statistics as well. And I was spending 80% of my marketing time doing social media. And yet, it was only bringing in like, 20% of our sales, which was shit. So shift. Yeah. Yeah. So that really helped consolidate that. The decision like okay, I'm not returning. I don't foresee a change in that. And so I wasn't on social media for two years. And I expected it to be a lifelong thing. But as I was doing my planning, just in the last month or so, I realised that I really wanted to create videos again, and because I can kind of connect with people in a different way in videos. And then I was like, Well, I can't do that because I'm not on social media. You already wore and a lot of the video platforms, social media, and I just kept up today like head fucking myself I wrote was like no, no social media for you Leone.

Paula Shepherd 15:11

Like you can change your mind you weren't allowed to try because you already made up your mind you couldn't change.

Leonie Dawson 15:16

Yeah, yeah. So yeah, it was a really it was it was a really interesting like transition to go through and they'd be like, Okay, well I need to come out about this because I feel disingenuous when I do. Like if I do suddenly appear on social media, I need to tell people in advance like, hey, guys letting you know, I'm coming out to social media. This is why. And here are the rules that I'm applying to myself to ensure that social media doesn't suck up my brain space and my hours and all that kind of stuff. So I've got like 12 rules.

Paula Shepherd 15:53

What are a few of those rules for people who aren't yet on your list and haven't seen that email? What are some of your rules about returning to social media?

Leonie Dawson 16:00

Sure. So I don't have social media apps on my phone. If I need to use them to record something, then they get in, like they get installed every single time I say that every single time I do the thing, and then I delete the app. So I can't scroll. My whole goal here is not to really consume other people's content, but just to create my own and connect with the people that are connecting with me. And even on my computer, I have blocked site, which blocks your access to websites. And so I always have social media websites blocked. And then when I do need to, like use social media for a specific purpose, I have a list of the things that I need to accomplish. And then I get myself a little timer, and then I set five minutes on the timer, when things off, I have to turn it off and then get on with the rest of my day. And of course, I'm going to be like batching content and and scheduling it. And then reusing content across multiple platforms to make sure that I'm getting the highest amount of use possible.

Paula Shepherd 17:08

So do you feel like the time off of social media gave you the space to figure out how you could best use it later on, without scrolling and being in because I know the impulsivity I feel that to having ADHD be that that like constant is like the scroll and the Keep going Keep going like and then also this idea of I have to because I create because you said I want to create this thing. But without the intention of I'm gonna go on there. And I'm actually going to consume I'm just creating and putting this there as another way for people to get to know me. There's this spin this reciprocal thing for myself. And for other people I know where if I am creating and I'm sharing, then I'm also obligated to consume. It sounds like you don't feel that way. Which is amazing.

Paula Shepherd 18:02

Yeah, but do you hear that from people where they're like, but if I create, then I have to go and like 1000 different people's stuff, and then play the game and do the thing and you just don't buy into any of that. I love it.

Leonie Dawson 18:13

You don't have to do shit, guys, you don't have to do anything you don't want to do and also like, if it's not good for you. And if it's not helping you achieve your life goals and making you a happier sane person that fucking don't like for me at Instagram is just like the devil spawn for me. Like, just, it's like reading a magazine, but like a magazine of all the people that you like, but they all just like look incredible. And it's just like, This is what I'm here for. I love long form writing and Instagrams not long for writing. So fuck no. So if there's anything that's on there, it's because my assistants put it on there or it's been scheduled from our like our batch like I'm not like, I think I might we'll see how I go. But in my like five minute timing, I might have like a checklist to just like go through and check a couple of comments on Instagram reply, and then get the fuck off there. I'm not like looking at shit on there.

Paula Shepherd 19:13

Yeah, oh my gosh. So if you guys are scrolling, feel empowered now to know that there are other people on there that are posting things and don't feel like they need to give away all of their time to go scroll. Lionni is a perfect example of that. Now your now that you're shifting back there, and you're starting to do some of these new things, what are some other? What are some ways that you're using cube working 10 hours a week and I'm sure that there are people going, she must have this massive team. Of course she's working 10 hours a week and they're doing all her things and she just said they're posting this stuff for her. Now I know from what you've shared previously, that that is not true. Can you tell us the behind the scenes of what is your team really look like at this moment in time?

Leonie Dawson 19:59

Sure. Um, you know, for me like 10 hours a week isn't because I like ascended to this level of success. It's been a life constraint for me, like, I've never had the luxury of working full time. In my business. I was working for the Australian Government, when I started my business. I kept going for like, six, eight years. While because I'm very like, even though I personalities very, like fuck everything, I'm very risk adverse. And so I built my business up on the side in like, part time hours, while I still have my safe government job, and only left when I was eight months pregnant with my first daughter. And then I had a baby who didn't sleep. And I didn't want to put my kid in daycare, it just like that wasn't a my value as being as present as a parent as I could. And so 10 hours a week was all I could kind of extra extricate from that situation. And then I've just continued to, you know, I had another baby and then continued raising them. And then we homeschooled for years as well, pre COVID. We did it before it was cool. Yeah, we

Paula Shepherd 21:17

were it was cool. Yeah. Do you have a course on that? How to homeschool your kid?

Leonie Dawson 21:22

Oh, I think I've got a free ebook somewhere. Once you do, of course, of course I do. Yeah, I just made Yeah, I just I made do. And so it made me really good at going, Okay. I've got this short period of time, I've got two hours, what can I do that needs to drive my business forward, because I'm the like, I'm the sole breadwinner for our family. That was my choice. And I'm very grateful to my husband for supporting by providing like the kid care and stuff like that. While I was taking those times, right, how do I make money? And how do I make money now, and it forced me to just fuck off a whole bunch of things I listed on important, like, the only reason I've created $13 million in 10 hours a week is because there's a very long to do list behind me of things that I haven't got to do.

Paula Shepherd 22:21

Okay, so let's worry, I'm going to repeat that. The only reason that she created the $13 million is because in 10 hours a week is because she's got a long to do list of shit that she never did. So, so being neurodiverse. And creating priorities for yourself, I imagine is I mean, for me, it's challenging, it's always been challenging, because everything feels really important. And the to do list becomes so long, and then you're like, I got to do all the things. How did you get yourself to a place where you went, I'm only doing this bit. And that's going to be enough. And I'm going to prioritise these things,

Leonie Dawson 22:59

just the natural reduction of work hours, like if you want to work less hours, then you'd like it doesn't happen by you going well, you know, at some point, I'll have less work to do. No, like the work is always going to be there to do. But you need to get very clear about what's actually going to get you big results. And what is gonna get you small results. And also what's just like a nice to have like, last year I fucked around and built the most beautiful, like notions standard operating procedures for my team like is that in any way helpful? Buck? No, like that was that was a bullshit use of time. So you just have to be super clear about what's revenue producing and what's not what's nice to have, and also in terms of revenue, producing what's going to create the big revenue, and what's not going to create the small revenue and then concentrate more of your hours on the big revenue.

Paula Shepherd 23:53

And you're so right now you have I think you have to you have two part time assistants. Is that

Leonie Dawson 24:00

so I have I'm back down to one part time assistant now. Okay.

Paula Shepherd 24:04

Yeah. So 10 hours a week, obviously, let's be I want to be really clear. I want to keep reiterating these things to people because sometimes that FOMO happens to people see where you are right now. And they forget that she said that she had this job, she waited her child was eight months old. She built her business on the side. And now she she created that 10 hour week container long before she started her business full time. She didn't go 40 hours a week or 60 hours a week and then decide now I can scale back. She set that that precedent for herself in that moment. And that's really important. And now you have yourself and you said one part time assistant, which is incredible. Yeah.

Leonie Dawson 24:46

And I you know, I did go through a period of like big expansion, where I ended up hiring a really large team because the business was growing and I thought that's what I needed to do it So I think I ended up with like 2025 staff. This was maybe six years ago, seven years ago. And I fucking hated it, like I hated, it sucked so much. And also, when you have a big team, you, it's, you have to work more hours. So that was a point where like, I ended up working more hours, I think I was doing like 20 hours a week. And I know, that's still like, a small amount, but it fucking killed me like, I had, you know, I had small kids, and I was trying to be as present for them as possible and 20 hours a week, and with my neurodiversity, and with the unique body setup that I have with different ailments and stuff. It was fucking god awful. And also emotionally and spiritually, I just felt like I was completely on the wrong path. I just thought this sucks, I would rather go back to just having a very simple, powerful business, where I'm supported by just one part time assistant, who is low drama. And so I ended up kind of over the period of a couple of years, right sizing my business. So when people would leave to go to another job, or whatever, I just replaced them. And got it back to a point where it felt so much better. And I'm so grateful, and I will never go back. Well, no, I should say I'll never go back. Because I always say I never, never do something like but what it is,

Paula Shepherd 26:30

but you get to bring one rule whenever you feel like it, that's the day. But tomorrow, it can be different. I think, sometimes people vision what they want, and then they go that's how it has to be. And I when you just said that I appreciated that because I, I had a big team at once. Well, not as big as that. But at the same time, I almost corporatized my business. So I spent 20 years in corporate. And then I started it felt like I was I was corporatized my business now all the SOPs and I've got to have this thing, and I've got to have that thing. And then this person has to be just like this. And I've got to have that. And there was so much structure and so much predictability. It just wasn't fun anymore. Exactly. It was it was this cohort here. And then that cohort happens here. And it was great when you feel those things and this stuff happens and everybody's doing what they're supposed to be doing. And from the outside looking in, it can be like, Wow, that person really hasn't made look at them with their big team. people aspire to that, you know, this whole idea of delegating, but But you you've really embraced the elimination piece of it, versus the delegation piece of it. There's a lot of what can I hand off to somebody else, and we're often handing off, I've done it paid for a lot of shit that we didn't need, because we thought we needed to delegate it, because instead we weren't looking at it going do I actually need that in the first place? Hence your social media thing? Right? Yeah. So being able to what you've done is so magical in that creating that space, not 10 hours a week, you know, for your 10 hour work week, is you're creating the space for you to have those innovative, creative thoughts that most people would haven't been conditioned to do. Especially here in the US where, you know, grinding and hustling and moving and constantly being on the go is kind of glorified. You know, working 10 hours a week. What, that's insane. And the rest of us are all drooling going. Yes, please give me some of what she has. But, okay, now, I could go off on a tangent on that forever. I'm just like, where are we going here? You also have this amazing Academy full of courses. And recently I Are you still doing your your 90 It wasn't $99 What was it? Yeah, yeah. dollars for a boatload of courses? Would, would you share what that's all about and why you were giving giving it away at $99 All of this genius in these courses.

Leonie Dawson 29:03

And so for me, the academy is just kind of this bonkers idea I had 13 years ago. And I was like, You know what I could, you know, sell this amount of courses. You know, and you know, and do it in this amount of launches or whatever. Or, or I could just like pile all of the courses and meditation programmes and books that I have into a membership programme and sell it for under 100 bucks a year. And so I did that for like nine years. It was super fucking fun and loved it. And then I was like, oh, okay, I want to take some years off from doing that. I felt like that cycle was finished. So I took three years, four years off, and just, you know, sold equals one to one. Also really fun. And then I had another dream It was like, Oh, the Academy's coming back guy. Fuck cool. All of the programmes again. Wow, all together two and a half grand, and you get it for nine bucks a year. Right?

Paula Shepherd 30:11

Wow. You know, there's, there's this idea around courses where people go, well, it doesn't make sense for me to do that and then $99 For all of these courses why? Why would you, but I love that you're creating all eat also creating accessibility for people in an industry that can often price people out of what we claim everyone needs. And when we and and as I would say coaches, creators, helpers givers, we want to serve the greater good. Unfortunately, what winds up happening is in order for us to feel like we need to survive, we're charging these massive premium prices. And then most of us feel bad because we're excluding the people that we really wanted to help in the first place. And yet, you are a living, breathing demonstration of the fact that you can sell an academy full of incredible courses for $99 and still be doing really well.

Leonie Dawson 31:13

Yeah, really. I think for me, I've really realised over the years is that my happy spot is helping more people, not less. And so like you know, sometimes I've looked at should I be selling myself like a programme for $2,000 like a signature programme, but especially a signature programme if I only had like one thing to sell for the rest of my life, I had a fucking stab myself in the face with a cucumber honestly just repetitively. Like I think he I want to talk about all the fucking things I want to teach about all the fucking things I want to make whatever the fuck I want. So a signature programme is just not it for me. And then for 2000 bucks, like just like not like I could just sell it. I could just like help 20 people for 100 bucks, you know? So I always just prefer mass market I just prefer helping more people I have lots of friends who do the higher price stuff and like I buy this shit I'm super happy for them. I love what they're doing. It's just not the right fit for me. So yeah, I like being fucking weird in the way that I do business. And you know when I look at like bringing in $30 million like the vast majority of that is in selling low priced stuff you know I just I like it

Paula Shepherd 32:41

Where do you see most of your your business come from? Because I know you have a pretty incredible following of folks who are sharing word of mouth affiliate, you know kinds of things and use some great great I want to say I don't want to call it promotion that's a really crappy word but you incentivize your community who is sharing what they already love. Are you finding the affiliate programme is filling that revenue gap, or is it something else that you really lean into?

Leonie Dawson 33:10

Oh, so I'm a little bit of an oddball in the industry in that I don't I haven't really used Facebook ads that much like I haven't done paid advertising that much. Because I'm such a slug for organic traffic. I really am such a slug for it. Like why would I pay for something when I could get it for free? And the way that I get it for free? It's just by making cool shit like sign me the fuck up? Yes please. So I just like making cool appreciate and giving it away to the world I liked like I just I've given away so much shit now and I love it. I love writing blogs still I'm still just an absolute old school blogger and writing really long form you know they're either going to be like really emotional pieces or they're going to be helpful pieces given away you know there's like a bit of search engine optimization but like I'll be real with you I probably haven't done anything Search Engine Optimization wise like specifically for that for probably years it's like more just like fucking write a bunch of shit and at some point it may turn up on the website like on the Google's but I think a lot of it is just trying to be so useful so helpful so loving to people that they can't help but tell other people about me like I want people to be going to their fucking Leonie Dawson shake like she is bonkers. It's so awesome.

Paula Shepherd 34:54

And it's true. You have so many things where you'll just give it away for you're giving things away for free. You'll have an Email and hey, I created this worksheet for myself or I realised I remember an email where you were talking about how you realise you were taking yourself too seriously. And all you're creating was for your business, but you hadn't done any real creating for yourself, and how you shared what that looked like and what you had created. And it was just a really, I mean, really talked about the hidden the cucumber over the head, but it was for me it was this, oh, she's right, how much am I just absorbing business stuff, and not really being free to be me outside of my business. And so you're giving away not just things, tangible things, but you're giving us a window into your world as you're walking through it. And that is allowing other people to have practical tools. And by tool, I don't mean an SOP, I mean tool, meaning a way to tap into your own creative side, so that you can stop being so stuffy and just start having more fun. But this idea of giving, I think not giving too much away, there's this, how much do I give, but then I don't know, I don't want to give too much. And you just, you just do what feels really good to you. And that always comes through, I am always excited to share your name and your information. Because you're real, you everything you you come across, because you are it's not just that you come across as so real, it's just you you are the person that I'm meeting today is the same person that I imagined you would be based on the the courses that I've taken and seeing you on or the emails that I've received. So I just I want to commend you for being that way. And also anyone that's listening to really pay attention to the fact that you you do things because you really want to help people and helping people doesn't mean that you're not making money while you're doing it. Yeah,

Leonie Dawson 36:56

and I've still got really good boundaries you know, like I'm not somebody who can be walked over if somebody you know, hopefully I'll meet someone they're like ah, let's let's get a coffee so I can pick your brain like what tighter me this I'm available but that experience babes know you can go read my fucking blog for free you can listen to my podcasts are free you can download everything off my friendship page, but I'm not going out to fun coffee even with my best mates. So just because I'm a hermit

Paula Shepherd 37:33

no but you're protecting your time too and I think that's it is being able to say no to people and not feeling bad about it because we create our own standards right nobody can push our boundaries if we haven't set standards and principles for ourselves and unfortunately most people don't so good for I mean, I'm like good for you. Like I'm sure you on over here I know I know. Um yeah, the whole idea of the million go coffee chats and all those things are it's incredibly exhausting, I think for the most of us and then so many people then shift into social media world because they think that's where it all lives and you're just a demonstration of just kind of try what feels really good to me and I'm going to hold my own here and I'm going to make a decision and I'm going to live in my values and I'm going to help a lot of people but I'm also going to make the money while I'm doing it well now that you're in this place of kind of shifting back and making new decisions for yourself Is there anything else that you feel like changing are there things that we should be paying attention to like what what new surprises are we gonna see from you?

Leonie Dawson 38:40

Oh, who fucking knows I think my commitment this year is I you know I've been a little bit a classified as partially retired for a while in that still working but lower intensity and this year, we had his back pitch like full intensity full Scorpio energy so I want to be loud I want to be present. And I want to be seen so it's just this this energy of expansion is here and a regrowth phase so I'm excited to see what the fuck happens next really with that kind of energy around

Paula Shepherd 39:28

Do you because you come out with that energy do you do you sit and and vision I want this to look exactly like this like did you ever sit back and say I want to make a million dollars and I want this kind of car you know people do this vision boarding kind of life visioning. I want exactly this thing. And then those of us who maybe don't think that linearly or or say like, I know I want things to be different. And I know what I don't want but I don't know exactly what I do want. What what is your what, like, where would you tell them to go and grow from? Because you are so fluid in your thinking? And I love it.

Leonie Dawson 40:05

Yeah, I mean, for me, I don't, I'm not that prescriptive in my dreaming I want. Well, no, I do set like yearly income goals. But that's about it because I want something to run for, you know. But other than that, it's all, like kind of just a vision of my life, the vision of my life is that I want to have a really happy home life with my husband and two daughters. And I want lots of time being present with them, and just be gentle, you know, just all of us to feel gentle and safe. And blooming in our own time together. And I want to feel abundant, and so I don't want to feel money stress. And and I like in terms of prescriptive test, I do like having a blue car. That's, that's about as far as it gets. Like, I don't care, necessarily what kind of car but as long as it's blue. That's all I've

Paula Shepherd 41:09

ever dreamed of. Yeah, that's very own brand.

Leonie Dawson 41:13

Yeah, yeah. Right. So everything else is cool. Like I, I just want to be happy and content and create stuff and have a good home life. And however else that comes about. Cool.

Paula Shepherd 41:31

I think I have one more question for you. And I think this is a great way to kind of close it out, as you mentioned the money piece. And I think for a lot of people who are thinking, if I made that much money, of course, I would feel relaxed or be able to be myself like she does or right, there's all that when I make x then this or that external thing that's gonna get people to the next level. Do you ever have the feelings even at making this much money? You've been doing this for so long? Do you ever have that feeling? Or that fear of? You know, what, if it all ends tomorrow? Did does it ever come up for you?

Leonie Dawson 42:09

Sometimes it does. And then I think I will a fake assumption out, let it go. Yeah, um, you know, for me, you know, one way I did work, one, one thing I did kind of have a fear about was like, Oh, what if? What if my heydays over intervene, because I've had periods of like, extreme visibility and stuff like that. And, like, I had to remind myself, like the only like, it's going to ebb and flow. And what's really important is still feeling like you have your priorities sorted in terms of you know, you've got your home life in a really beautiful state. And that you continue to turn up and create and share in whatever way that feels right to you. And that's, that's all that's really in my responsibility. And in my care. Hmm.

Paula Shepherd 43:12

Thank you for sharing that. I appreciate it. Because I think there are so many people that just they think that when they have that next thing, it's just going to make everything better, and they'll never have those feelings. But the fact that you do, but you just know how to say I've done this before, I can do it again, I'm super creative, I've created this thing. And I can continue to do that. And you believe in yourself. And you do it kind of in a scrappy way, which I love. Your podcast is amazing. It's not over produced, so many people over produce them. And I was one, you know, you pay a lot of money to have. If your podcast producers, I don't mean anything, not trying to say don't go spend money here. But this idea of like it has to sound like this or be like this, and you throw all of that out the window. But truly inspiring to go, I can just have this thing and just like put it put it on, and people still listen to it. And it's fine, because it's the message. It's not the like pretty intro and the outro and like the this and that and the other. So I really, I want to I want people to really see that you do things from a place of giving, but from this like scrappy, creative, innovative place that isn't overdone, but it's created with love in a way that says like, I know, you just need to hear this message. It doesn't need to be so polished that you you you don't believe it anymore. So I applaud you for that. And I thank you for really being this like beacon of light. And that sounded corny, but like you really are this this person that's out there doing things so much differently than everyone else. And even though you're making your reappearance back on social media in another way You You are someone that people should follow and and really read your blog and get to know you because you are, you're doing it so much differently than everybody else. And it is just a breath of fresh air. So thank you.

Leonie Dawson 45:13

Oh, thank you for that. That beautiful mirror, like often I totally forget what I'm doing also ADHD, I just turn up and go, Who am I again? What am I doing? Like, oh, okay, I'm doing shit differently. Okay, that sounds like a really great mission.

Paula Shepherd 45:34

Yeah, do it. That's that's exactly what it is. Those are the best people. And I'm, I'm so grateful for you. I'm glad that I said something one day and someone said, Do you know? And I said no. And that was the introduction. And it really is that easy. People. It doesn't have to be that you were she was writing some amazing piece of how to content with a list. And you found her on social media. Like it doesn't need to be that way. It just needs to be an introduction. And those are really the best, most amazing connections. So Liana, before we close out this amazing conversation with you. Is there anything else that you'd like to share? Something that's maybe on your mind that kind of popped up in your ADHD brain? Anything that we should know about you?

Leonie Dawson 46:20

Oh, okay, here we go. This is real world exclusive. This is exciting. So one of the things I'm really well known for is my yearly goals workbooks, where you set out, you know, your review your last year, and you set out your goals for the next year. And I think I need to actually start doing quarterly and start instead of just the yearly like, I think I need to drill it down. Because I think a year might be too too long for me, but I'm still playing with that. And so of course, once I've worked it out, I'll let everyone fucking know what system like and create systems around it and make cool shit for it. But I think I'm gonna do seasonal planning. And it seems like such a simple thing. But honestly, it's it's like blowing a fucking mind.

Paula Shepherd 47:11

I love seasonal planning. I'm here for it. I'm looking a year out feels so hard. But if you do if you chunk it up like that, my brain can handle that so much better. I'm here for it. Do it. Make it we need it. Nice. Okay, experience. Yeah. And in the meantime, I will share all of your links so that people can access your website, your academy, your goal books, you can get those on Amazon as well. But I'll make sure that you have all the links so that you can stay connected. Definitely get on the newsletter. It is one that you will look forward to getting in your inbox. I don't know that you call it a newsletter. But you know what I mean? With that, it's just yeah, I mean, I'm kind of like newsletters newsletter, I don't know it is but it's fun. It's not boring. You will want this in your inbox, you will want to go follow her. I promise you. Thank you so much for being here. I am honoured to have the opportunity to share this space with you and to elevate your voice to the masses. So I'm looking forward to staying connected.

Leonie Dawson 48:08

Oh, bless you. I just adore you, Paula. No,

Paula Shepherd 48:11

thank you. All right, everybody. Until next time, I will see you then. Thank you for listening to this episode of The confidence sessions. I know there are hundreds of 1000s of podcasts and I'm so grateful that you chose to spend your time today with me. Head on over to the courage forward slash podcast to check out the show notes from today's episode, and grab links to all the amazing goodies mentioned today. If you love this episode, as much as I loved making it, make sure you don't miss out on any future ones by hitting the subscribe button right now. See you next time.

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