3 Reasons to Stop Calling Network Marketing a “Pyramid Scheme”

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“Don’t hate what you don’t understand” – John Lennon

I see posts online with people calling the Network Marketing industry a pyramid scheme all the time, and I hear it in person occasionally as well. I have to say, when this happens it takes a lot of effort to keep myself from educating the people that said it. For this reason, I have set out to hopefully educate some people about Network Marketing a little bit so that we can do away with this line of thinking. To start out, I want to provide you all with the TRUE definition of a pyramid scheme for a basic understanding in case any of you are unsure:

Pyramid Scheme: a form of investment (illegal in the US and elsewhere) in which each paying participant recruits two further participants, with returns being given to early participants using money contributed by later ones.

If you are one of the people that typically refers to Network Marketing companies as a pyramid scheme, I wanted to share these three reasons with you to hopefully help you understand why you should really stop.

UntitledNumber 1: It is untrue. As defined above, a pyramid scheme revolves solely around recruitment. So as an example I wanted to show you what a pyramid scheme ad looks like. I didn’t really browse that hard, I just went to a random advertising group on Facebook and scrolled for about 5 minutes. I found this gem to the left, and this is just the first I came across of what I am sure would be many to be found on the wall of that group. This isn’t an obvious pitch for a pyramid scheme, because obviously, they would get in trouble. However, I have a little insider knowledge with this $25 per referral ad because someone tried to recruit me for this kind of crap in the past. And that is exactly what it is – total bullcrap. THAT, ladies and gentlemen, is a pyramid scheme. Their sole purpose is to go out and recruit people for the “company”. All they have to do to join is pay a small fee of $25+ dollars to join, and then they can start recruiting more people and earning money immediately. It is a constant return of cash from ONLY recruiting.

Do you see the difference between THIS and between legitimate Network Marketing companies? I hope you do, because it is pretty freakin’ huge… THERE ARE PRODUCTS AND/OR SERVICES FOR SALE… If it is a company that has legitimate products for purchase, it does NOT qualify as a pyramid scheme, despite the fact that it does involve team building. In fact, when you think about a typical corporate environment, there are often bonuses for referrals. When you work at the company for so long, you are granted the opportunity to make recommendations for people that you think would be a good addition to the company. If they are hired, make it through the probationary period, and succeed in their role, you receive compensation for the recommendation. So when you think of it that way, the corporate environment has team building too! The problem here is that this industry is a relatively new concept to people, so it is difficult to grasp I guess. Think of it this way: Each person involved in Network Marketing is essentially the CEO of their own company. In order for a company to grow and become successful, they typically must have other employees and grow in size. It is the same with Network Marketing. To become truly successful, you need to build a team, and you need to nurture that team consistently to help them grow teams of their own as well. When you think of it this way, Network Marketing actually is more of an inverse pyramid. Why? Because in order for one person to be successful, they have to aid their team to be successful. You can’t just recruit a bunch of people, then sit back and rake in cash. You need to train your team, help your team to grow, and push your team to achieve new heights in their business. Nobody can simply sit back and get complacent, which appears to be a common assumption.

Number 2: It is offensive. Seriously though! If you ask anyone in the Network Marketing business what they think about people that refer to their JOB as being a pyramid scheme, chances are they will say that it drives them a little bonkers. It is just so frustrating to be so passionate about a company that you love, and to have so many people on so many different fronts constantly trying to dis what you do. We work HARD at what we do (or at least those of us trying to make this a real career) and it can be offensive and rude to have people look us in the face and call the Network Marketing industry a scam or a pyramid scheme. If you care about your friends and family involved in this industry, please do not use those terms when speaking to them about their business. Even when speaking to strangers, it is best if you just keep those words out of your vocabulary when discussing this topic. These days Network Marketing is becoming super popular for being part-time endeavors, so you seriously could be meeting tons of strangers every day that have businesses outside of their “real” jobs without your knowledge. If you want to avoid an awkward and uncomfortable conversation, just keep those little negative thoughts to yourself!

Number 3: It makes YOU look bad. I am aware that this one may offend a few people, because I am sure that there are a lot of you out there that are guilty of doing this on a fairly regular basis. However, I gotta be real… It seriously makes you look kinda silly and ignorant to those of us that actually know the true definition of a pyramid scheme. We live in a time where SO many people around the world are bringing in full-time earnings by working at home with their direct sales business. There are millionaires in many of these companies, and more and more are made all of the time. If you put the time and effort into this industry, and you are willing to learn and to grow as a person, you can be successful in this industry as well. To say that something is a scam, when it is clearly doing so much good for so many family and individuals around the world, is just ridiculous.

If you have been guilty of this, I want to encourage you to please just stop. Start thinking of Network Marketing for what it really is – a successful business opportunity not for the faint of heart.

xoxo

Jess

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My Naked Truth

Yesterday I entered a new chapter in my life. Yesterday was the day that I devoted myself fully to my goals, and turned ideas into action steps to help me achieve those goals. One of these action steps came in the form of The Naked Leader, a coaching program with Janelle Fraser. One of the very first things that I learned, and something that is said to be the foundation for all leaders, is that you have to be 100% unapologetically yourself.

“Being a naked leader is defined as someone who purposefully chooses to lead and share a message wilst showing up fully as their true self.”  – Janelle Fraser

This concept essentially refers to being open, honest, and vulnerable with your followers. Nobody is perfect, but when you’re running a business, you often feel like you have to portray perfection all of the time to be successful. The concept of the Naked Leader totally challenges that habit to hide the messier side of your life. Instead, it encourages you to OWN the things from your past, present, and future that maybe are not as “polished” as you would like them to be. In honor of this challenge, I wanted to reveal the naked truth that is who I am, and how I got here.

This is most likely about to be a long one, so turn back now unless you want to be in it for the long haul!  

Note that any names used will be changed..

We all struggle a bit through adolescence. That goofy, awkward, roller-coaster of emotions time of your life where you are learning and growing as a human being. I had a pretty normal childhood full of ups and downs, and lessons learned. It was at the age of 15 when my life kind of got spun around 360 degrees and flipped upside down.

Age 14 was a tough year for me, because the boyfriend that I was madly in love with “allegedly” cheated on me with another girl. You tend to feel those emotions so powerfully when you are young, so it crushed me. We spent the summer broken up, but things picked back up when we got back to school the following September. That was when I started to change. Prior to that incident, I was pretty much a goody-two-shoes. I didn’t drink, smoke, do drugs, or even swear. When I allowed myself to go back to my ex, I started changing all of those things about myself gradually to make the Love-quotes-Dont-change-to-make-someonerelationship work. (If you are doing this – STOP NOW while you have the chance… No relationship worth having should EVER require you replacing good qualities and habits about yourself with bad ones) I wish someone had shared that advice with me because I started drinking, I smoked marijuana, I skipped class, the whole nine yards. It was not a healthy relationship, and the feelings that I felt for him certainly were not reciprocated in the same manner. Instead of being uplifted, I was constantly torn down and made to feel broken and worthless. He never physically laid a hand on me, but sometimes chronic manipulation, lying, and emotional abuse can be just as rough on a person. Eventually the school year ended, and he walked out of my life. The result was a risk-taking, newly single 15 year old ready to finally let loose and have some fun during the summer.

My dad has been a paramedic since I was a little girl, and I remember growing up he would always tell me stories about his work. Specifically stories about the reserve, no doubt trying to warn me of the dangers he had seen and keep me away from it all. As a father, he tried to warn me about drinking and partying in general. I had always heeded his warnings, until that summer. My best friend at the time had moved into a home on the reserve with her father and his girlfriend, and she had told me about a party her friends were having. We plotted a way for me and my step-sister to be able to go to the party without raising suspicion among our parents. My sister’s mom was told she was staying the night at my house, while my mom was told that we were both staying the night at Ashley’s house. Of course both of our mothers were told that her parents would be around for supervision. It was a pretty classic scenario, so I am sure that you have already guessed by this point that there were no parents present that weekend. Our plan worked perfectly, and we went off to Ashley’s house to get ready for the party. The first several hours were actually really fun, and I started to think that my dad had been wrong. Everyone had been really nice and accepting, for the most part.

My sister ended up drinking a little too much that night, to a point where she actually made me chase her out into a field when it came time to get her to go back to the house and call it a night. Whenever a friend gets too drunk, I think it is almost a natural instinct for us to cut back and take care of them instead of getting inebriated ourselves. That is what I chose to do that night. When I finally rounded her up, I found Ashley and her cousin and prepared to go back to the house. Ashley had a crush on one of the guys from the party, so she brought him and his friend back to the house to continue hanging out. Everything was fine at first, but once people started going to bed, everything changed. My sister had passed out on the bed, I was on the bed beside her, and the friend of Ashley’s date was beside me. When the other three left the room, it was just him and I left awake. He was drunk, so naturally when left alone with a girl, he made his move. At first I didn’t mind, we fooled around around for a bit because it felt nice to be kissed again. It didn’t take long for that to change though, and the requests for more started. It basically began by being told to take off my pants, and I kept insisting that I wouldn’t. I said my sister was right beside us and would wake up as an excuse. He tried to get me to go in another room, but I refused to do that too. Eventually it got more insistent, and he said if I didn’t take my pants off, he would. I continued to refuse, because I had no intentions of sleeping with anyone that night. He followed through with his statement though, and as it started, I laid on the bed motionless, crying, mumbling “no” over and over again, and just waited until it was over. When he was finished, he pretty much just got up from the bed, got dressed, and left the room without saying a word.

I know exactly what you’re probably thinking, because it was a running inner monologue of mine for a long time. Why didn’t you fight him off? Why didn’t you scream for help? Why didn’t you make more of an effort to stop this from happening? My honest to god answer is this – I don’t know. I had so many things running through my head that night. The biggest thought process of all was my father’s stories about the reserve, what he had seen, what the men can be like, the abuse, the murders and assaults, and more.  I’ve grown up now, and I recognize fully that they are not all like that, but at the time I just kept thinking about those stories and how I1 didn’t want to be one of the girls picked up in an ambulance beaten to a bloody pulp. I was afraid of what might happen if I did resist and fight. I didn’t think this guy was abusive, but then again, I was 15 and I had literally just met him that night. I wasn’t exactly in a good position to make that kind of judgment call. I had my sister to think about too, who was lying beside us totally dead to the world from drinking too much, and I didn’t want her to get hurt too. So I made a choice. I made a choice to just stay still and wait. Maybe everything would have been fine had I made more of an effort, or maybe I would have been driven to the hospital in an ambulance and not my mother’s car. That is something that I will never know.

I told my sister about what happened the next day, and we went back to my house. I struggled with the decision as to whether or not I should tell anyone. I really didn’t want to tell anyone else because I felt responsible for what happened to me. I didn’t feel like I could call it rape, because I had been fooling around with him first. I felt like I had brought it on myself, and that it was my fault for getting his hopes up in that way and expecting him not to follow through. By some stroke of what I thought at the time to be sheer luck, my uncle stopped by the house while my mom was out. I thought, “if I just tell him what happened, I can ask him to keep my secret.” It was pretty freakin’ naive, but at the time I was desperate, and he was my only hope to get the morning after pill. I was terrified to death of pregnancy and STD’s. As soon as my mom came home, my uncle left the house and met her on the walkway. The look on her face as she walked through the door with tears running down her cheeks still breaks my heart today.

What came next was a visit to the hospital, where my mom told my dad, and my dad told my grandparents, and I ended up in a hospital room with most of my immediate family. It was awkward, uncomfortable, and humiliating. I hated every second of it. I had a hard time filing the report with the police because I had to admit to my family that I had been fooling around with him first. I blamed myself, so I expected them to do the same. They didn’t. Next I was poked and prodded by the nurses as they performed a rape kit, extracted about 10 vials of blood for testing, and shot a massive needle into my butt that hurt like hell and burned so badly that it made me scream loud enough that my family could hear me in the hallway. The whole experience was just painful in more ways than one for my entire family. Beyond that, I was given a huge bag full of medications that I needed to take to help reduce my risk for contracting HIV. Testing had to be done in another 6 months to be fully sure, so I had to ensure several months of the unknown and worrying as well.

When I went back home, everything seemed different. My parents were on edge and understandably overprotective, so it made it difficult for me to interact with my friends. It really didn’t help matters that my closest friends at the time were male, and my parents viewed all guys in my life as the devil. Ashley was no longer my friend because my mom had told her parents about what had happened, and it had gotten her into trouble. Along 14424672with her and her entire family, a lot of people thought that I had made the whole thing up. They thought that my behavior was not that of a person who had just been raped, because if I had really been through that, I wouldn’t be comfortable hanging out with my guy friends. I knew them and trusted I them, so I was not scared of them. They knew about what happened, and they supported me through it when my girl friends laid blame, labelled me as a lying slut, and abandoned me. Ashley and I made up years later, and she understood after I explained all that I had been subjected to after that night. It is not something that a girl takes lightly. I encourage you to think about that next time you wonder whether or not to believe a rape report.

A week after the party, we heard noise coming from our back yard. A friend of my mothers was here, so we sent him out to check it out. It was a group of natives, and they were vandalizing a vehicle in our back yard. In all of the time that we had lived in this house prior to that summer, and all the time spent in that home after that single incident, we have lived there without anything like that happening again. I will never know for sure, but at the time, I took it as a threat and a warning. It scared me to death. I decided not to pursue charges partly out of fear, but also because I still believed that I was to blame. Regardless, I couldn’t stand the thought of going back to school and having to face him, all of the other natives, and his many friends who would most likely believe him over me. I thought for sure that I would end up getting beaten up at school, and I refused to go back. My mom sent a letter to the other high school in our little town, and luckily they accepted me as a transfer student against their regulations due to the circumstances.

The very first week at my new school, I made friends with the kind of kids that parents don’t approve of… for obvious reasons. The kind that do drugs, skip school, and party. I remember the very first night that I met them, and it was at our local carnival that takes place at the end of every summer vacation. I had been offered drugs that afternoon and had turned it down, but I later saw a group of people associated with the guy who had sexually assaulted me earlier that summer. I panicked, and I started to lose my mind a little bit. I sent my sister to investigate and verify that he wasn’t there, and I ended up agreeing to take my very first ecstasy pill to calm my nerves and try to have a good night. From that point forward I spent about 6 months of grade 11 high on weed or ecstasy, drunk, or a combination of both. It made me feel better, or at least I thought it did for a while. All it really did was make me forget, and give me a false sense of happiness for several hours until the crash. My solution to that was to just do it again the next day to keep it going. At one point down the line, I was offered some acid. I accepted, and ended up taking 4 hits of acid in one night. I am pretty sure my eyes remained open and unblinking for over 10 hours by the pain I felt the following day. I absolutely loved being on acid, even more than I enjoyed ecstasy, so I knew that I could never touch it again or I would become hooked to that too. It wasn’t too long after that night that the nightmares began. I had not had a bad trip while on acid, but apparently that doesn’t matter. Acid can leave its mark on you long after the initial dose. For about a month straight, I had to sleep with the light on because I would wake up petrified from the nightmares of what seemed to be of a bad acid trip. I would be hanging upside down from the ceiling unable to move. I would be seemingly glued to place on the bed as ghost-like forms lunged at my face. Basically all of the crazy stuff that a young person fears during the night when the lights are off is exactly what would appear in my head while I slept. It was extremely vivid.

This is another turning point in my life. I started to really think about where I was and what I was doing to myself. I started wondering, what if this is God sending me a message and telling me that I need to stop doing drugs. Please note that I do not identify myself with any particular religion, so I am not trying to preach to you about God. Regardless of my beliefs or non-beliefs, I thought of these nightmares as being a bad omen. I decided that the drugs needed to come to a stop.

Unfortunately for me, I did not decide to stop drinking, and I continued to hang out with the same crowd of people. One night I was at a party drinking, and I had consumed a large cooler (basically a cooler the size of a wine bottle) and 1 mixed drink with rum. By this point, I had obviously become accustomed to drinking alcohol, and I had built up quite a tolerance for the stuff. Those coolers were basically juice for me, and for someone who typically just did shots and drank hard stuff from the bottle, 1 mixed drink didn’t do much damage either. I remember sitting on the couch having a conversation with my cousins boyfriend, feeling fine and having a great time. I finished up that drink, and he offered to get me another. He came back with my drink and we continued to talk as I drank it. I don’t really know if I ever finished that drink, because everything from that point on is pretty hazy despite it being so early in the evening. I remember him helping me to the bathroom, and holding my hair as I threw up. I vaguely remember him helping me to a bed in a bedroom, and then offering to get me water. Everything beyond him leaving the room is a mystery.

I was woken up really early in the morning by my friend saying that I needed to go home because I was in his bed. I groggily got up, got my things, and went out to the cab. I turned on my laptop when I got home to check Facebook, and I had a large amount of messages from my cousin. She was livid, and was accusing me of having slept with her boyfriend. I had no idea what she was talking about, but she said people from the party had told her. I sent a message to the friends of mine that had hosted the party and I asked him what had happened. He told me that it was true, and that the guy had been bragging about it. My cousin said one of the girls at the party told her I bragged about it too (but the source was a girl that didn’t like me to begin with, so I don’t know for sure if I did get up from the bed at some point through the night to talk to people or not). When I went to get undressed to put my pajamas on and go back to sleep, I found a large amount of dark blood on my underwear. I didn’t think that it was the right time for my period, and when I 11174887_10153782931693508_8908561499487718016_nfelt the soreness the next morning, I had to face facts. At that point, I knew it was true. This time I didn’t tell anyone, I just went to the clinic on my university campus to have tests run. The bleeding continued, and I was told that the guy that night must have been very rough because it had caused damage internally that was made evident from the discoloration of the blood. I blamed myself again, because I was the one that had made the choices that had ultimately led me to that moment. I didn’t realize it at the time, but it is very likely that I was drugged. I knew from the start that something about that night just didn’t make sense, but I hadn’t been able to put my finger on it until I learned in one of my psychology classes about the date rape drugs and their effects. Much like the last time that this kind of thing had happened, I still considered myself to be at fault, so this time I kept the whole thing to myself. I didn’t report it to the police or tell my family. I hadn’t gotten pregnant or contracted any STD’s, so I just dealt with the bleeding on my own and tried my best to act like it hadn’t happened.

It is kind of ironic actually. When I was assaulted the first time, it led me to the darkness. This time, it brought me out into the light, because it gave me the strength that I needed to finally put an end to my destructive behavior. I quit drinking cold-turkey, and I cut ties with most of my “friends”. I use quotation marks because for the most part, once I quit drinking and partying, they really didn’t seem to care about me or want to spend time with me anyway. I started focusing on my school work, and I turned the second half of grade 11 around to a point where I was getting mostly 80’s and 90’s. I was isolated though, and very damaged, so the depression sunk in. I started to supplement my feelings with food, and I would eat junk food constantly in an attempt to make myself feel better. I developed a very unhealthy relationship with food, and the result was rapid weight gain, which ultimately led to more depression, and more junk food consumption, and the cycle continued on and on and on. I pretty much spent that second half of grade 11, and my entire graduation year, isolated and alone.

I did very well in school that last year, and I did it without touching a drop of alcohol. I decided that I wanted to go to law school to become a prosecutor so that I could make a difference by putting away the bad guys. Since I spent my weekends alone, I developed an obsession with Criminal Minds reruns that played pretty much non-stop each weekend along with CSI. I bought the entire collection on Ebay, and binge watched the entire series. I decided that I wanted to become the Canadian version of a profiler, which, much to my surprise, actually does exist within the RCMP under the title “Criminal Investigative Analyst”. I spent grade 12 working towards getting into the school that I had chosen, and I did get in. From that point forward, I was focused entirely on getting what I wanted. I knocked all basic requirements out first year, and the next year was split equally between Criminology and Psychology. Third year was spent fulfilling requirements for the honours program and additional Criminology and Psychology requirements, and fourth year was spent finalizing all requirements needed for my double major and honours in Criminology. In the end, I made it out alive and graduated with honours in distinction. My studies in these subjects taught me a lot about myself, my circumstances, and society. Unfortunately, the world we live in appears to have made victim-blaming so commonplace that most women and girls victhat are victimized automatically begin the line of thinking that they must have done something to deserve it. Maybe they think their outfit was too revealing, or like me their earlier actions suggested consent. What I have learned is that it was NOT my fault. It was NOT okay for someone to continue once the word “no” had been uttered even once, let alone numerous times. It was NOT okay for someone to have rough sex with a person that had thrown up and then needed to be put into bed with a glass of water. It was NOT okay for people to put the blame on me. It was NOT okay for those guys to take what they wanted from me and leave me to pick up the pieces of my broken life. Most importantly, I learned that I would be okay. I always wanted to someday tell this story to the world in an attempt to hopefully help others going through similar circumstances to learn these important facts for themselves, and I just now mustered the courage.

Toward the end of my third year of my degree I made a life-changing decision. I decided that I was going to take my life back, and that I was not going to allow my life to be dictated by my past. I decided that I refused to spend my grad year of university the way that I had spent my grad year of high school. I was miserable, alone, and just totally defeated back then. I set to work immediately after school ended that third year, and I began P90X. This Beachbody program helped me change my habits. I worked out 6 days a week for 6 full months with that program, and I ate clean through the duration of that period as well. When I finished that, I tried Turbo Fire, then Les Mills PUMP, and so on. By the time that I got back into school for my grad year, I was feeling so much better about myself as a person. I was happier, I was getting my confidence back, and I was pushing myself to talk to people and make friends. I did go out to grad events that year, and I had fun and made memories this time. All of this helped me come to the realization that my desire to be a prosecutor or in the RCMP really wasn’t about the job itself. It was about getting revenge on the people that had hurt me by putting away other bad guys in their place. To take those kinds of positions would have been focusing on a life of negativity. I would have been constantly surrounded by terrible acts of abuse, and I would have to live with that burden on top of that which I already bear. When I came to this realization, I decided that I was better off choosing a different path.

I decided to skip grad school. I became a Beachbody Coach to help motivate and encourage others to achieve results like I had. I later joined Younique because I fell in love with their makeup. I’ve since been on a backpacking trip where I explored Barcelona, Paris, and London. I’ve been to Chicago, Vegas, and California, and I have trips planned to Nashville and St. Louis next summer. I have had so much positivity come into my life since making the decision to let go of my past, and I just have to keep reminding myself of this every time that I slide backwards.

Now you may be curious about the whole cold-turkey alcohol situation. I quit halfway through grade 11, and I did not touch alcohol until a few months into my first year of university. The impact that it has had on my behavior is huge though. I am very conscious of what I am drinking and how much I am drinking while I am out. If I am out with people I am not 100% sure I can trust, I make sure to stay sober enough to handle myself should a tough situation come about (it helps now that I have Les Mills COMBAT under my belt lol). I NEVER allow anyone but a bartender or daterapesignificant other to provide me with a drink while out. I tend to just totally ignore all men while at a bar, unless I went there with them or I know them already. I stick to the buddy system and always go out drinking with a friend, or don’t go at all. I am sure there are more weird little quirks, but ladies, regardless of whether or not you’ve been assaulted, you should all be doing these things to protect yourself. We shouldn’t have to – but this is the world that we live in, so we need to take precautions while we work and fight for change.

The impact that this has had on my relationships has been pretty powerful as well. Men tend to not be a fan of my perspective, so I guess in a way it is a good thing, because it weeds out the unworthy. I will not sleep with people until we are in a committed relationship, or have at least been dating for a while. The point is this: I’ve gotten to know them, I have come to trust them, and I can see the potential for a future with them. I once had a guy respond to this rule with “you don’t buy a car without test driving it first”, but in my case, yes you do. Needless to say, this guy is no longer a part of my world. Our happiness is not defined by having a man in our life. I have come to learn that if they can’t handle me needing time and space to get to know them and trust them before getting intimate in that way, then they don’t deserve to be in my life in the first place. I would rather be single, working on my own personal development, growing my businesses, and creating a life of happiness for myself than be in an unhealthy relationship that is going nowhere.

I am human. I am flawed. I am far from perfect. I have made terrible decisions that have had very bad consequences, and I know that I will make more bad choices throughout my lifetime. I can’t say that I regret any of the choices that I have made in my past, because it has led me to who I am in the present. Who I am is a good person that has had a few hurdles thrown in her path. I am also a person that deserves to be happy, and I am ready to do whatever it takes to create that for myself, no matter how many hurdles I have to knock over to get there.  No more hiding. No more keeping secrets. It is time to lay it all out there so that I can finally move past this and get started on my future.

If you are struggling with being a victim of sexual assault, I strongly encourage you to talk to someone. Anyone. You NEED to get this off your chest. If you don’t feel comfortable talking to anyone in your life, please write to me. Use the contact page here on my blog, and reach out to me. I promise that I will talk to you, and do my best to help you through this. If you are struggling with a drug problem, regardless of the type, and regardless of how far along you are, I encourage you to STOP if you can. If you are too far along and you physically can’t do it yourself, I encourage you to do the same. Reach out to someone for help, even if that someone is me. If you are struggling with depression due to body issues or anything else, I encourage you to get help as well. Again, reach out to me if necessary. You can’t do this on your own. I had a lot of help along the way from my loving and supportive family, and I couldn’t have gotten to where I am today without them in my life. You need someone to be in your corner, and if you don’t have anyone else, please let me be in your corner to help you get through this.

One of the reasons why I am SO passionate about Younique is because of what they stand for and what they support. Our mission statement is to Uplift. Empower. Validate. I just love that. Our goal is to be women supporting other women, making them feel amazing and beautiful, and 15 - 1most of all, making them feel like they are worth it. YOU are worth it. Younique has created a foundation to support survivors of sexual abuse, and it is a very powerful and empowering initiative that just fills my heart with that much more love for this company. As I mentioned before, I had the privilege of attending the 2015 Younique Convention in Chicago, IL. Prior to our convention, Younique challenged everyone to submit a video lip syncing to the super-powerful Fight Song by Rachel Platten. A select few of these videos were clipped and made into a video that was shown at convention. On top of everything else, this was beautiful and it certainly brought tears to my eyes. Check it out:

 You are not alone, and you will get through this.

If you’ve made it this far, thank you so much for reading. If my story helps even just one person, it will be worth it. Please know that this is not a cry for attention, nor is it an attempt to point fingers at the two men. All of this is behind me now, and I simply want anyone else struggling with these issues to see that you CAN turn things around.

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xoxo

Jess

5 Reasons Direct Sales is MADE for the Struggling Student

Something about myself that many of my online readers may not know, is that I actually started my direct sales journey while I was an undergrad student. There are challenges that accompany that for sure, because along with class, you are often trying to balance readings, writing papers, preparing presentations or projects, working part-time, and having some form of social life. Having a direct sales business on top of all of that sounds daunting to you on top of all of your other tasks, and it does come with unique challenges. However, it also has a lot of hidden perks. When you have classes through the week, and schedules that change from one term to the next, it can be difficult to find steady employment that is above minimum wage… and let’s face it, minimum wage on part-time working hours for a student is often just not enough. When I started school, I was actually working three part-time jobs. Each job individually did not provide me with enough hours, so I kept taking on more and more. This resulted in little sleep, a lot of stress, and not enough time to focus on my schoolwork. Any of the higher paid jobs typically do not accept students, because they prefer to have people that are going to be there long-term and working on a full-time basis. Add to that the fact that it is becoming increasingly hard to find a job in the first place, at least where I am from in the Maritimes.

I was pretty fortunate in that I was able to get into a good and steady job the summer after my second year of my degree. It wasn’t much in terms of hours during the winter months, but the hours and income I had during the summer allowed me to save. I also managed to get a perfect job for a student in my final year, a security guard in a government building. I worked weekends, which admittedly did suck, but it permitted me to study and work on schoolwork in between my responsibilities because the building was nearly always shut down on weekends. Most students are unable to have that luxury. For that reason, it is almost like the direct sales industry is perfect for the struggling student.

Here’s 5 reasons WHY direct sales is MADE for the struggling student:

  1. You have the ability to choose your own schedule. Have exams coming up, three papers to write, and a presentation to prepare for a seminar? Not an issue. With a direct sales business, YOU get to choose when and how you work. If you only have 5 minutes before class, you can write a quick post for Facebook and share an image on social media. Network marketing provides you with the freedom and flexibility to CHOOSE when you need to focus on your studies, and when you have time to focus on your business. There were some days when I was just totally drained mentally, emotionally, and physically from school (especially exam week), so having the ability to say “you know what, I think I need to take a day off from working my business and focus on my studies, or even just to relax and power up” is amazing.
  2. You are surrounded by potential customers. One of my biggest regrets is that I didn’t use that huge advantage while I had the chance. I am shy and more introverted, so I didn’t network like I could have. If you are a social person, this is honestly the perfect opportunity for you to use that to your benefit and make connections that will ultimately propel your business forward. University is just full of students, and gives you a giant advantage over everyone else doing a business. You have opportunities to meet new people DAILY.
  3. You save money on products you love. When you pick a direct sales company to join, you need to make it something that you love and fully support. In doing so, you will be genuine with those around you and they will see that in you. Working for a company that you love will allow you to get the products you would be buying anyway at a much cheaper price, and even make a return on all of your purchases through commissions from sales you make with the company. I chose a beauty brand and a health and fitness company because those were (still are) my passions, and I stuck around for 3+ years. I am with LimeLife now, and it is something that I absolutely love and enjoy doing, and it allows me to save money on amazing makeup and skin care that I would be buying full price anyway.
  4. You can take your job with you wherever you go. I went to school in my hometown, but a lot of people that I went to school with were from out of town. Many people came from different cities, provinces, or even countries to study. If this is you, what happens to your job if you go home over the holidays, during summer breaks, or when you graduate? Chances are a place of employment will be okay with 1 week vacation to go home, but they won’t be down with an entire summer. With direct sales, you can bring your business WITH you. While on holiday breaks, summer breaks, or upon graduation, you can continue working on your business. It is even better for you this way, because it allows you to network and make connections in your hometown and across the country as well!
  5. Extra income to support you throughout your degree. Every company is different, so I can’t speak for the payment schedules of all direct sales companies. However, I can tell you that LimeLife has the best compensation plan that I have seen for a direct sales company. The commission is deposited onto a special credit card that you can withdraw from, or even use to pay for in-store purchases like groceries, gas, etc. Personally, I chosen to allow my commission to accumulate on the card to use it to help pay off my student loans. This approach gives you an opportunity to support yourself throughout your degree with something you enjoy doing on your own time, by your own terms.

The naysayers will try to convince you that it is a waste of time, or that it isn’t worth it, but they are wrong. Even if you only have time to work on it super part-time like I did when I was in school, it still allows you to build a following through networking while in school and establish credibility among your friends, family, and peers. Over time that business will grow, and eventually you will have more time to put into it, and it will be worth it to see the result.

Are you a struggling student with a direct sales business already? I would love to hear about how this industry has helped you throughout the duration of your university career! Please share below in the comments :)

Feel free to reach out to me at any time should you have additional questions!

xoxo

Jess

So you want a business opportunity that is free?

Much like anyone else in the network marketing business, I am a member of multiple groups to network with other people in the industry and those looking to become a member of the industry. Within these groups, I see countless posts on a regular basis of people seeking business opportunities with no starter costs. If you are one of those people – this is for you.

If you have been searching for anything free, chances are you can’t find a business opportunity that is free because that is not the way that the world works. Network marketing is NOT a get rich quick scheme. Network marketing is a legitimate business opportunity, and essentially you are your own CEO. Obviously all companies are a little bit different in how they do things, but for the most part, you are paying a fee to start that covers a kit full of products, training, website fees, etc.

Think of it this way. If you wanted to start your own store locally, you wouldn’t be able to just do it for free. There are start up costs, and a whole lot more that way too. Network marketing gives you the opportunity to have your own company without all of the hassle of producing the product and shipping it out.  You can’t expect companies to give you the world. The products that come in those kits are super discounted already (at least with my company, LimeLife) , so you can’t expect to be handed them for free. Not to mention that initial fee also covers your training online, it usually covers a personalized website, you get a LimeLife credit card for your commission, and more.

Another common theme among people that make these posts is to say “well I would rather join for free and not get the starter kit”. That is available with LimeLight as well, but I am sorry, that option just makes no sense if you want to get your business off to a good start from the beginning! Having a start up kit is essential to a new business so that you can use the products and accurately represent them to your customers. You need to have experience with the products and be knowledgeable about the products if you are going to sell them successfully. People are going to ask you what you think of certain products and expect you to be able to give them an honest answer. They won’t appreciate you saying “well, I don’t know actually because I have never tried any of the products”. Right then and there you will lose all credibility with that potential customer, and that is bad for your business.

If you are just joining a company for the sake of joining a company and making money, I have to be honest, don’t bother. People can tell when you are genuinely passionate about a product or if you are just trying to push it, and they will gravitate to those they can tell truly care about the product. People want to buy from people that they can trust, and with whom they have formed a relationship. If you’re all about the sale and you place little value on the customer experience, you’re not going to get far in this industry.

Now I know that if you’re struggling and you don’t have a lot of money it can be difficult to make that investment, which is why some of the people making those posts are seeking something free to join. However, if you are serious about wanting a business opportunity that you love and creating a life of financial freedom, you’ll make the effort to save up bit by bit until you can pay for your kit. Even just a couple of dollars here and there will add up.

Just remember that with any network marketing business, you need to put in what you want to get back out of it. If you are not willing to make an investment into your business, then that is a choice that you are making, and it is something you are going to have to learn to live with. I don’t believe in sugar coating the truth to get people to join my team because I feel like people need to know the truth about network marketing prior to joining. It is important that you know what you can expect from this industry and what it will take to be successful, because it simply may not be for you.

It’s not for everyone, and that is perfectly okay.

Visit my previous post to learn about the Network Marketing industry. If you are still interested in making this a part of your life, Click Here to learn about LimeLife, or visit my website to sign up today! I have my own team training resources in addition to those provided through LimeLife corporate and our Facebook training group, and I would love to have you on my team and help you create the success you are hoping for.

Thanks for reading!

xoxo

Jess

The truth about Network Marketing success

One of the biggest objections that I get from people that I approach about my Network Marketing opportunities is that it is a pyramid scheme, and/or it is not a real job. Well, I am here to dispel these misconceptions and tell you exactly why that line of thinking is just plain wrong.

I think the biggest issue with these network marketing professions is that people tend to think that if you just join, you’ll be able to start making a LOT of money fast without actually putting in a lot of work. If you think of it as a get rich quick scheme, chances are, you are NOT going to find success in this industry. These businesses DO work, and they can provide you with unlimited earning potential. However, it is not a magic money tree that is going to continue giving you money for little to no effort – at least not in the beginning. Just like any other job, you actually have to WORK at network marketing in order to be successful. This means that YOU and you alone are responsible for your own success or failure with your business. The tools and training are all at your fingertips, and if you join under the right upline and with the right team, you will have the support that you need to be successful. However, the rest is completely up to you when it comes to putting in the time and the effort that it takes to sell your products, and build your team if you hope to move up through the ranks to be successful.

I don’t want to sugar coat this part because I think you need to be prepared for the fact that it is not always going to be sunshine and rainbows, and there are going to be a lot of people that are going to ignore your invitation to learn about the opportunity or straight out reject it. It can be scary at first, because nobody likes rejection, but you just have to realize that it doesn’t matter! If you believe in your products whole-heartedly like I do, then you just move on to the next person until you find someone that can understand and appreciate what you have to offer. It is really a numbers game, so the more people you get the opportunity in front of, the higher the likelihood that you’ll be successful. Anyone can make some extra income with network marketing, but if you really want to be successful, you need to step out of your comfort zone and get over your fear of approaching people about your business opportunity and/or products. Our team actually does challenges to motivate everyone to step out of their comfort zone and do something new and different to take their business to the next level, and that is a huge help. Small little steps compounded over time can make a BIG difference.

Again, you need to think of this as a real job, because it is a real job and a real business. Too many people out there are looking for something free to join in the hopes of making some easy money, but in most cases, that just isn’t going to happen. It is super unfortunate, but way too many people join a company thinking they’ll get rich, and then they quit before they ever get to experience the results of their small steps compounded over time. You should commit to at least one full year with a company before you throw in the towel, because a breakthrough could be right around the corner. Furthermore, with a real business, you have also got to be willing to invest something! If you’re going to join a company and promote their products, you kind of have to know what it is that you are promoting! For example, with Younique there are no monthly fees and you don’t pay a “startup fee”, but you do purchase a presenter’s kit that is full of our most popular products at almost a 50% discount. This allows all of our new presenters to try out our products so that they can market them to others appropriately and really gain a passion for the products and the company. Most other direct sales companies out there will have the same kind of system with their products, and it really is a valuable investment.

Thinking of a network marketing opportunity as a real job also means that you need to designate some time each day to working your business. Honestly, that can be as simple as taking 15-20 minutes out of your day here and there to make a few posts on social media, respond to a couple emails or messages, or make a simple blog post. A lot of us waste hours of our time on social media without even noticing! Why not use that to our advantage and use some of that time to take steps that can further our success with a given company?

“You work just hard enough to keep them from firing you and they pay you just enough to keep you from quitting. You are in a prison.” –Rise of the Entrepreneur

The fact of the matter is that our system is flawed because so many people are going to school in the hopes of finding a good job, but then end up struggling to find a job after graduation and being saddled with debt for years to come. People work sometimes 2 and 3 jobs just to make enough money to get by, and instead of going away for vacations, most people are stuck at home on their vacation days because they don’t have the money to do anything else. That is why network marketing is an amazing solution to these issues. It is something that you can do from home on your own time, and it is without all of the risk that usually comes from starting a business. Most companies have relatively low startup costs, and you aren’t responsible for coming up with the product to sell because that is already established for you. You aren’t responsible for producing the product, shipping the product, fixing issues, etc. All of these things are taken care of by the company, and you are just the third party tool that spreads the word about what you have to offer and brings in the new clientele and you get paid to do it. I find it so ironic that people are willing to spend 50+ years of their life working for someone else and struggling with money, yet they aren’t willing to spend 3-5 years working a business with unlimited earning potential and making enough money to not only get by, but to thrive! With network marketing, we get to be the CEO of our own business. How awesome is that?

Probably the biggest issue that I wanted to address was the common misconception that network marketing opportunities are really pyramid schemes. This one drives me craaazzzyy. It is one thing for people to genuinely ask about this, but it is a whole different story for a person to try TELL YOU that your company is a pyramid scheme. I am sorry, but in my opinion that is just childish and ignorant. Please do your research and learn the definition of a pyramid scheme before you insult someone like that, because though there are pyramid schemes out there, the vast majority of network marketing opportunities are legitimate. Honestly if you think about it, Corporate America is actually a pyramid scheme because you have the top people getting richer and richer while everyone else stays relatively at the same income level. Now, with network marketing, it is actually more of an INVERSE pyramid. Instead of the top earners doing well while the rest of us stay at the same low income, the top earners GET to where they are by helping those below them to do better. Our success is really the product of our team success, so in order to do better ourselves; we first have to help teach our team to be successful as well. This means that everyone on the team that is putting in the work will be moving upwards with their business!

“Think of your dream as a balloon on a string. Are you going to reach out and grab it, or are you going to let it slip through your fingers?” –Rise of the Entrepreneur

Are you willing to work and to learn? Could you benefit from an opportunity that would allow you spend more time at home? Do you need or want an extra source of income? If so, I would love to chat with you about the opportunities that I offer. I highly value both of my companies for different reasons, but fitness and beauty have become huge passions of mine. If you’re a woman that loves makeup, ask me about Younique. If you want an opportunity that would allow you to work on your health and fitness, ask me about Beachbody.

Network marketing IS a better way, you just have to be willing to take a chance and try it.

I need your input!

This is why I am content with my two businesses! First I have my regular in-person job for money, and then I make money on the side with my two businesses. My Beachbody business has the health and fitness avenue covered, because I drink my Shakeology daily and get my workouts in from various Beachbody fitness programs! I also have the benefit of being creative through Younique in experimenting with makeup and creating different looks. I absolutely love fooling around with different pigments and trying to create something new!

There is one more passion of mine that isn’t represented here though – TRAVEL! I adore what I do as a Beachbody Coach and a Younique presenter. I get to make money for working out, staying active, and playing with makeup! I joined both of these companies out of love and appreciation for the products, and a desire to share that love and appreciation with others. I had zero intention of joining any other company, but recently I was approached by someone in the travel industry.

I need advice!! I am strongly considering taking the plunge with a travel company to take care of that third passion I have for seeing the world. I have been itching to get back out there ever since I got back from Europe last summer, and the only thing that is stopping me is the money. I now have an opportunity in front of me to earn super cheap rates for travel all over the world, and to make money with the company at the same time as a travel agent.

My question for all of my followers is this: Do you think that I should take a chance on another business to satisfy my travel urges, or do you think that I should stick with what I’ve got? Sound off below on this thread with your opinion!