Why On Earth Would I Want To Share The Following Story With You?
I actually have a book in mind about overcoming life's challenges.
You know, our world is full of opportunity and wonderful people and when we can grab a hold of that when life's storms come our way, what an awesome and rewarding life we can have!
I have found in my life when someone is transparent with me in sharing a difficult time they went through and have overcome, bounced back and now better than new...
I know our best is yet to come!
So it's my time to share with you about some challenges I went through so you can see that no matter what life throws at you, you can get through and not only survive, but thrive!
Being public and sharing my story helps people overcome their own challenges. It's about inspiring others to be their best in life. I can only help them when they can relate to me.
It's difficult to hear someone say to you, "I understand what you're going through", when they haven't gone through what you have. Can I get an AMEN?
Often times people want to make excuses as to why they can't do this or that. I send them to read my story and say "yes you can, it's a decision to what to overcome."
My purpose with my business and my life is to be an inspiration for others so they can get to their finish line with flying colors!
I Woke Up This Morning When I Was Done Sleeping
I woke up this morning naturally, around 9:00 am, after my body was fully rested, not to the alarm clock. (The only time I use an alarm clock is if I have a plane to catch and have to be up.) This alone is lifestyle. It's amazing to live your life fully rested!
I mosey to the kitchen where I brew a cup of English Breakfast tea, feed my pets and open the blinds overlooking my beautiful property. It’s quiet because the neighbors have long gone off to work.
I sip my tea, read Scriptures, my current personal development book and meditate. I’m grateful.
I start work around 10:30 for a couple of hours.
I’ll grab lunch (my favorite is a spinach chicken salad) and usually head to my design studio where I play in my hobby industry of scrapbooking. I visit with family and friends and enjoy the bulk of my day.
In the evening I may hop on a webinar, do some marketing, do some coaching appointments with new partners, and go to bed when I’m tired.
I have a full time income with my online business, I spend time with people I choose to. I do what I want, when I want and I remain grateful that I don’t have to report to a boss. I’m in control of my life, my days, my time and financially securing my future.
Does this mean I don't work? No. I work. But I work on my terms and all I really need is my laptop and an internet connection. Anyone can do the same thing, if they want to.
It wasn’t always like this.
Here’s my story.
Seems Like Yesterday….
It seems like yesterday that I was living 2 miles to the Atlantic ocean in a beautiful golf community in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina (Charleston area), I had two kids still at home, one finishing up high school, the other partnering with me in real estate and we were enjoying life.
We loved strolling Historic Charleston, grabbing an ice cream and watching the boats off of Battery street. Watching the traditions of women making their seagrass baskets or the shrimp boats come in on Shem Creek, these were some of our favorite things.
I was traveling back and forth to Kentucky where I have an interest in a scrapbook store with my mom, I’d stay for a month at a time and design, do store displays, teach classes and such as well as just visit with her and dad.
Living in Mt. Pleasant and the Charleston area of South Carolina was awesome. I really enjoyed being a real estate agent there. It was a good life.
I thought my income was secure. I had buyers and sellers, the market was great and really, I had a pretty good life. One that seemed secure anyway.
Note To Remember: Look for the silver lining in any circumstance: My Silver Lining? It didn’t cross my mind that trouble was on the horizon to the extent that it would turn my life completely upside down, take me to place of complete ruin and devastation which would ultimately lead me to a life of freedom and choices that I wouldn’t want to trade for any 9-5 job.
Leave It To Beaver Lifestyle
I grew up in a “Leave it to Beaver” home where dinner was on the table at 5:30 every night, we all sat together and shared the day. Are you old enough to remember the “Leave it to Beaver” series?
Mom cooked, cleaned, ironed, sewed, tended to the children. Dad worked and was always home in time for dinner. We kids shared chores, were taught to be respectful of adults. You never looked cross-eyed at your parents, questioned their decisions or opened your mouth when they are talking. “Yes mom, Yes dad” was the response.
We went to church every Sunday (wearing our Sunday best which meant patent leather shoes and my fanciest dress) and didn’t miss a potluck.
I had a great childhood. I wouldn’t trade it for anything so don't get me wrong. I feel like the luckiest girl in the world to have the parents God birthed me into. Our home was filled with love and mom made sure the holidays and birthdays were special with decorations, music and special foods and traditions.
The Missing Generational Plan
I loved growing up in my family...
While my home was filled with love, laughter, provision, faith, friends, and everything you’d expect from the average American family, my parents raised me in the “old school” family plan.
Here was that plan:
Boys grew up to be husbands who provided for the family. Girls grew up to be homemakers. Therefore, there was never one discussion about me going to college.
The plan was to graduate from high school, get married, have children, and live happily ever after in a home with white picket fence and a puppy..
Now I don’t believe my parents would have discouraged me in any way if I had brought up the subject of college. I believe they would have supported me but I’m not sure I knew I had options.
I assumed everything my parents taught me and really just had no clue. I loved the little world I lived in.
And why didn’t I ask? Or dream a bigger dream for myself?
Because of my grooming. I was all assuming that I would do what “mommies” do by watching my mother. And I loved the idea of being a wife and mother. Mom taught me to cook, clean, iron, sew, care for children, etc. And I wouldn't trade that for the world! I feel so fortunate to have a mother who spent time instilling the importance of running and managing a home. She is amazing.
But... it was ONE way of thinking. It's how she grew up. And her mother taught her.
This is how belief systems are passed on from generation to generation and never questioned.
So the story goes... I graduated from high school in 1977 and here's where the plan started to fall a part a little bit.
1) Times had changed. The economy was fast creating a society where it took two people to maintain a home and family, which would put me to work rather than being a full time homemaker. I fell within those ‘changing years.
2) I didn’t have a husband in the wings. Mom and dad followed their dream of buying a farm in Kentucky and moved. So I was 18, just graduated, no husband and no job placement skills.
My Ace in the Hole…
Dad owned an appliance store and sold it to the manager when they moved, who was then without a secretary. He offered me the job as secretary and I took it.
Fast forward several years…. I was living in Las Vegas, Nevada, married raising 2 boys, involved in Scouts, Church and outreach programs, Little League and working as a legal assistant.
I loved my work and being a part of helping people solve their most stressful problems. I enjoyed the research, preparing pleadings and assisting in building cases to win for our clients.
After a several years however,, I found myself at the top of my pay scale. I was at a crossroads.
Do I accept this pay the rest of my life?
Do I go back to school and take the bar?
Do I completely change careers?
No, I didn’t want to limit how I can live my life.
No, I didn’t want to take 6 years and hundreds of thousands of dollars and get my law degree.
Yes, It was necessary to move on.
Here's What I DID Want
I wanted freedom to live my life on my terms. Period.
I trusted what I wanted.
I trusted my dream for that.
I trusted that my life is my story and it would be up to me to make it happen.
I REALLY hated to be told how much income I can make.
... OR what to do with my daily schedule
... AND when to do certain things
... AND what to wear (panty hose, suits and high heels were getting old)
I felt taken advantage of when I saw the attorney’s drive luxury cars, live in beautiful estate homes and travel to Europe while seemingly I was doing my fair share of long hours and hard work and driving away in my little red Camero.
My Brainstorm for Lifestyle Freedom
and decided to start a real estate career.
I’d get my license and make as much money as I wanted with nobody telling me what to do with my daily schedule. I had a young daughter by this time and I would need to be fully available to her.
I made a decision. I was committed. I was ALL IN.
I went to school in the evenings, got my real estate license and put my two weeks notice in to the very well paying career as a legal assistant.
Yep, I went cold turkey. Why? Because nobody told me not too! I didn’t know that 95% of people who get their license never make it. Failure was never on my mind! I assumed you get your license and then get to work, figuring it out as you go and doing the activities required to find buyer and sellers. So I did.
I did ‘floor time’, open houses, door to door, ran ads (some were good, some were terrible), I became my neighborhood expert, bought stuff to leave in door bags with my brand all over them, attended events, continued taking classes to educate myself, the works.
At the company’s annual meeting/party, they recognized and awarded a plaque to top producers (Earning $100K+ that year). When the broker announced they were going to hand out these achievement awards, I was thinking, ‘boy we’re gonna be here all night because surely everyone in here did that… except me,” and the room was packed.. Hundreds of agents.
Well, I was shocked to hear my name called! In fact, I sat there thinking maybe there was another Debbie Turner because surely it wasn’t me. I mean, I knew I was doing well but I didn’t realize I did THAT well.
But, yeah, it was me… ‘lil rookie me and I was honored.
Walking past all these agents who had been in the business for years, clapping for me and who did not receive the award. I was baffled why they weren’t receiving one and I was. Only a handful had received the award. I was shocked. That's when it first occurred to me that everyone had the same work ethic.
What I learned from this is when you just get busy and stay focused, fumble all over the place but take consistent action, you’ll have success. You’ll get there.
My Life Turned Upside Down
Years since then, I had move to Mt. Pleasant, SC and was enjoying a real estate career with Exit Realty.
Towards the end of 2007 however, things changed. At first, I thought maybe it was me when seemingly suddenly, my phone stopped ringing, the homes I had listed were sitting, and in fact, were not even getting showings.
And buyers? Nowhere to be found.
I confided with my closest colleagues and the same was happening to them. I was relieved to know that I hadn’t done something to mess up my business… but then I was devastated wishing it was just that. But it wasn’t. It was something much bigger.
The Economy Handed Me A Pink Slip.
I tried everything to stay afloat… price reductions, buyer incentives, throwing in commissions, but the fact was, the housing market was shut down.
Just the year before when the market was booming, we had many of the apartment complexes in our area convert to condos and they were selling like hotcakes. I snatched up some myself.
I owned beautiful properties right on the Cooper River that connects Mount Pleasant to Historic Charleston (pictured) and another on the Intercoastal waterway between Mount Pleasant and the Isle of Palms. Another in a beautiful golf community 10 minutes to the ocean.
My properties were soaring in value. I had great tenants and feeling pretty good.
But as my tenants' leases were up for renewal, I was left with vacant rentals and by this time, it was definitely a renters market. I had no takers.
I found myself coming out of pocket for multiple properties, maintenance, HOA’s which were high because of flood insurance, taxes and no income from closing commissions.
Additionally, I had just signed various contracts for $60K in advertising for the next year through various media outlets like I did every year… like Homes and Land Magazine.
Well, here’s the problem.
I had no income from real estate sales.
Several mortgages still had to be paid.
Taxes and insurance had to be paid.
The advertising agencies had to be paid. I couldn’t breach my contracts.
Stress and anxiety were high and trying not to panic. We were holding our own and Steve still had a good business going himself, but the we didn't have an overflowing pot of funds to dip into.
I had to put on my “I can do this” hat and find a solution.
I knew something must change.
I had to change my plan.
I needed to find another source of income outside of the real estate market and as well as make sure I was cutting out every penny of unneeded expenditure
Robbing Peter To Pay Paul
I tried to keep my head above water and believed the real estate market was just a temporary event because surely things would turn around.
I was charging everything that I could except payment on credit cards and only using back up cash for the things that didn’t accept credit.
I was doing side work in my scrapbooking design studio but the amounts that were coming in did not come close to the monthly obligations going out. My credit card debt soared to $110K after trying to manage all my business and mortgage obligations.
I wasn’t sleeping. I kept thinking, surely this market will turn around and I’ll be able to get back on top again.
But as weeks passed…no. It was a ghost town in the real estate market. It’s official. It really is time to move on.
My Search For Lifestyle Income Using The Internet
I Turned To The Internet
I went searching online to discover how to make money using the internet and working from anywhere in the world. I didn't want to be tied to a location. I wanted true lifestyle freedom. No chains!
The home based business industry caught my attention as a solution but there were two non-negotiables:
1) I would NOT do the whole "make a list of family and friends and chase them down selling lotions and potions and vitamins." No way.
2) I required lifestyle income. When someone bought my product, it had to be significant and impact my pocket book. Absolutely.
I had heard of people making lifestyle income online so I decided I would pursue this internet marketing path. I mean, why not, right? If others have done it, I can too.
Sure, there's a lot of shady things out there. But for the most part, there's great companies, great products and great people leading the way. Truth is there are shady people in every profession on earth. So that's a not a valid reason to not pursue it.
The reason the home business industry has such a bad reputation is because people join a business and think they can get rich overnight without working. So they quit and call it a scam. These are the people who should never have joined in the first place.
What I Found
I was very interested in travel so I went in search for a high commission travel product I came across a product for a high end travel club membership where when I sold one, I’d generate commissions of $3K, $7 and $10K, depending on the level of membership purchased. This had my attention.
These were the kinds of commissions I was used to on a regular basis as I closed real estate deals. So this would meet my requirement for lifestyle income.
I remember thinking if I can sell just 2-3 a month, I could catch my breath and that would give me enough to pay the mortgages and begin to rebuild.
I joined this travel affiliate program by plopping down $15K and then “plugged into the same system” that I bought from. Well, I THEN learned I needed to send traffic to the system for people to get educated, just like I did. If you don't know, 'traffic' is people. People who would be interested in my travel product.
For some reason, I thought by just having this system, that somehow people find it, buy from me and I make money. In my head, I was calculating multiple thousands of dollars a month just flowing in with this magic system with little to no effort.
I was so green and ignorant about how the whole ‘make money online’ or ‘work from home using a website' thing worked. Its amusing looking back at my perception. LOL!
I called the person I purchased from for some direction and was told to buy leads from lead vendors, send through through the same system I just came through, then call them and close the sale.
Well, okay then. I went over scripts, I hated to do that but I was open to learning and very coachable because I wanted success with this endeavor. I made the calls. I fumbled the conversations. I choked up. I sweated. I got rejected. Wash, Rinse, Repeat. For several months with zero sales this went on. I was commited to the learning curve but apparently something was wrong.
Boy oh boy.. I needed some better training. So I took action. It didn’t cross my mind to quit. It only crossed my mind to figure it out and be proactive in my learning.
I Flew to a Dani Johnson “First Steps to Success” Weekend
I discovered Dani Johnson, the homeless lady who within a year make her first million. I wanted to know what she knew. So I bought tickets to her event and headed out.
Mind you all this money was coming from the shrinking limit available on my credit cards. Imagine the monthly payments on $110K of credit card debt!
The reason I was willing to KEEP spending was because it was necessary to get me UNstuck. It was my NEW education, my NEW career and I was smart enough to know I had to buy and get what I needed to in order for to get where I needed to be.
When people tell me they don't have the money for education yet they want a change of career, it doesn't fly with me.
It’s what entrepreneurs do.
We risk alot to have what others will never have because we do what we gotta do to get there. We don’t see it as risking something to lose but rather investing in ourselves for gain. It’s a different mindset.
I came back from the event, and began calling leads again. I called leads for hours every day. No results. ZERO RESULTS. I had my sponsor listen to me call. he said I did fine.. Still No results. By this time, I assumed it was the lead source and I needed to change things up. Obviously.
I was determined about two things at this point and would begin a hunt for the answers.
1) I hated buying expensive leads that I had no clue where they were coming from because obviously, they were not targeted right.
2) I hated calling leads and chasing people. There HAD to be another way. I would figure out how to have leads chasing me!
By this time, I’m $35K and 8 months into my new and crazy career path and still ZERO sales. So… once again….
I knew these 3 Things for sure…
I knew SOMETHING MUST change.
I would be 100% responsible for the CHANGE.
If I was going to figure out this whole "home based business using the internet stuff", I knew I needed an education about marketing online.
As I was going along this journey, I was fast becoming aware of what I DID NOT want.
I didn't want what I did to feel like a job.
I didn't want to go to go back to the job market or to college so I needed to figure this out.
I didn't want to buy leads and call people about my travel product.
I was also discovering what I DID want.
I wanted to market my product on the internet where people see my offer.
I wanted them to watch a video presentation to get educated on my product.
I wanted them to get to know, like and trust me through my own videos.
I wanted them to buy without having to talk to me.
Or at the very most, have a great conversation on the phone or in emails answering their questions before they buy. I need to know how to talk to people about the home business industry and starting a business of their own. And, about how to help someone make a buying decision on my product.
I Went Searching Online For Help
Pictured: Debbie with Mark Hoverson
I searched online for how to use the internet to market this travel club membership.
I came across Jeff Mills and Mark Hoverson who were in the same company and called them both looking for ideas to market online as it seemed they some stuff figured out.
Mark and I had a short conversation, maybe 10 minutes.
I talked to Jeff and told him I was so out of money it wasn’t funny but was open to free marketing strategies. He told me he was having an internet marketing conference in Minnesota and I needed to get there. So I did.
Well, you’ll never guess who I ran into.
Mark Hoverson and we discussed briefly the Global Resorts Network business that we both had seen online and were considering joining. This was a way more superior travel club membership than the one we were currently marketing.
I Saw What Internet Marketing Was… Wow!
At the Jeff Mills conference, I was exposed to internet marketers who pulled back the curtain and showed me what it’s all about.
My first reaction was that it was overwhelming.
... as it was further explained, I realized that ALL I NEEDED was:
A good ad hitting my target audience which lead to...
A good capture page which lead to …
A good sales presentation that converted which lead to…
Sales and a good follow up campaign.
I could choose any number of marketing strategies. They all work, it just depends on my interest and budget and doing it. And keep doing it until I get results.
I Took Action
I came home from the conference with a new outlook on my business and a new path.
1) Needed a new product and Global Resorts Network was on my mind.
I had discovered over the course of the 8 months where I tried to use the product myself so I could testimony to it, that it was really a sub-standard membership for the price they were asking. I found it to be a very disappointing product and any attempt on my part to offer it to others would demonstrate a lack of integrity and self-sabotage.
2) Needed to get busy learning how to implement some of the marketing strategies I discovered at the event.
A week after returning from Jeff's event, Mark Hoverson called me. He said, “Debbie, I joined Global Resorts Network. Join with me. Here’s the link.”
I did. This was the beginning of what is now my success.
Here's what Mark Hoverson said about our new business venture and working together....
At the event, I learned ABOUT the various marketing strategies, but I didn’t learn the “how to” of the implementation of the strategy. I Googled the “how to” and figured it out as I went.
And by the way, I’m a baby boomer with no computer experience other than typing and being able to attach a document to an email so don’t think I some advantage!
I Took Action To The Top
ACTION) I shared the GRN membership with a friend and made a sale.
ACTION) I ran an ad on some free ad site and sold another.
I had made $2K my first week just like that.
(Totally acting like a school girl, making this sale was liberating! I called Mark who was stepping off a plane in Hawaii, crying tears of joy, to say I had just made a sale! We did a little 1 minute celebration and my belief in myself and the product just went way up. After almost a year, I had finally made my first money online.)
And if you can make $1 online, you make millions.
ACTION) I started marketing using free methods because I was out of money.
I began making videos like crazy, teaching, sharing and inspiring... and did massive amount of marketing with the following strategies:
- writing articles
- creating Squidoo Lenses
- creating Hubb pages
- contributing in forums
- networking on MySpace
- I started my DebbieTurner.com blog
- I started a second blog for Global Resorts Network
- I started creating capture pages
- I started using attraction marketing
- I burned the candle at both ends for days and weeks and months.
I had nothing else to do and finally felt I was on the right path with the right product, the right commissions and the right mentors.
Late 2008-2009 Life Was Sweet.. then BAM!
My business was going great and I was enjoying the lifestyle I wanted.
*** I was working with Mark and we were doing team calls, I was doing some coaching for his new members as well as mine and as our teams grew, Mark started hosting live events which we’d all meet up at and do fun stuff together.
The picture below was taken at liftoff hot air ballooning over the Rockie Mountains in Colorado.
*** I hosted opportunity calls for Global Resorts Network.
*** I was marketing other affiliate products and found myself on the top of leaderboards and winning affiliate competitions for Ann Sieg, Jonathan Budd and others.
*** I was respected in the industry and establishing a name for myself. I was able to really start contributing and helping others.
*** I had finally been able to take control over my life.
Enjoying time with the best friends any person could ask for.. .
THEN Life Happened …
My Mom Suffered a Heart Attack and Stroke
It was not the economy that took my breath away this time. My mom who is my very best friend in life suffered a heart attack. It shook my world to the core. The doctor had less than an hour to get her into surgery and put in a stint to save her life.
It was also discovered that she has a condition called “Ballooning Heart Syndrome”. It’s not curable. You just live with it. She can’t do anything that would get her adrenalin going.
So for example… no more fast rides at Disneyland, no water rafting, no big surprises, nothing that would pump blood through her heart fast, such as hiking or working out.
Over the next several weeks, I helped out at the family brick and mortar during mom’s recovery. She was in and out of the hospital with spiking blood pressures with no answers as to why.
She had a mini-stroke not too long after her heart attack and it felt like we were walking on eggshells with her life. It seemed like we were waiting for her to fall over any minute. It was terrible.
To say the least, I was distracted, so naturally, I was not very attentive to my internet business as I usually was, I’m sure you can understand that. I wasn’t as available for coaching and really being fully in the game. My time was more split now between attending to mom and the family brick and mortar store and worried about Dad holding up. I did the best I could.
NOTE TO SELF: I was feeling grateful that money was coming in while I was helping my family. It’s a dream come true and it’s why we set our automation in place to make money while we live our life.
If dealing with Mom, the family business and my own business was all I had to focus on, I could have managed.
However, over the course of the next year, there were monthly events that came at me at rapid fire which threw me into a deep depression.
Here’s What Happened…
I Went Through A Divorce
I went through a divorce after 30 years of marriage. If you’ve never been through that, you can’t image the energy it takes. Steve and I are the best of friends through it all which sounds weird, I know. Family is still very important and we are very close with our kids and even do family stuff together. Nonetheless, it was a loss. But it's all good.
The Next Month My Business Lead Source Shut Down
It’s about 10 pm and I get an email that says, “Hey Debbie, I was going to watch your video but it says it’s suspended”.
I said to myself, “This can’t be happening and at a time when I need it the most!”
Sure enough, the hundreds of videos that I had built over the previous couple years were gone. These videos were embedded on my blogs, in forums, on capture pages, on Squidoo Lenses and Hub Pages. And now they were gone. This meant, my lead source was gone. And when your lead source is gone, guess what? You’re out of business.
Well, I wasn't out of business but this was like a big 'SORRY, WE'RE CLOSED' sign.
Now, normally, I’d say, “dang.. okay, let’s start getting them uploaded again.”
It has taken so much energy to deal with mom and the store and the divorce and now the realization that I just threw 2 years of videos in the trash (which were hundreds).
But, as luck would NOT have it, I had gone through and deleted about 90% of the videos from hard drive. I assumed they were safe on YouTube and they were taking up space on my computer. This means, two years of work was just trashed.
NOTE TO SELF: Do Not Rely On YouTube For Safe Video Keeping!
I didn’t feel like I had the energy to rebuild at the moment. I was tired. But I knew I had to anyway.
I created a new channel and I started building again, but by this time, it was harder to get momentum because I wasn’t putting them out in massive amounts like I should have been and my energy was lower. I was doing the best I could.
Here’s the truth.
My eyes didn’t sparkle, my energy was low and I looked sad. Even when I tried to fake it. I had depression setting in and went through weight fluctuations. I had lost weight and then gained weight and I didn’t feel good. It’s amazing how stress can change your physical look!
I tried, I really did try to make the best videos I could. As I watched myself on a playback, I just looked empty. I was tired, hurt, scared, just lost most of my business, almost lost mom, lost my marriage, my kids were gone now, and I was so exhausted from life, it was starting to show.
But hey… I’m a girl, I can do it! I’m not going through anything that others haven’t and if I change my thinking, stay focused on the positive, the good, the grateful, the vision I had for my life, I can turn this around.
I bathed in personal development, more time in meditation and prayer.
Doing the best I could, I started uploading videos, doing more screen capture videos than head shots but it was taking every bit of strength to keep going.
The Next Month... BAM! I Lost My Smile – Bone Transplant
Within a couple of weeks following, two of my teeth cracked in half. The $15K in dental work I had done about 5 years earlier, was done incorrectly and just fell apart. These were teeth that showed when I talked or smiled.
With holes in my smile, how was I going to rebuild my video channel?
I wanted a quick fix to the teeth but I was told I needed a bone transplant for the new teeth and it would take awhile to heal before I can have my smile back.
This was another blow, but I wasn’t going to be stopped.
The Next Month... BAM! Self-Esteem Issues Surfaced
Even with the “I can’t be stopped” attitude, there was something NEW surfacing that I had never experienced before.
I was now becoming very self-conscience between the weight I’d gained, the lost sparkle in my eyes, the energy drain and now a couple of teeth missing which was evident when I spoke or smiled. This one really surprised me because I have NEVER had self-esteem issues.
Go figure! I’ve always thought I was pretty awesome!
How many of you know that when you lack self-esteem, you’re pretty much a sitting duck for lack of confidence?
Well, that’s what was setting in, the poor self-esteem about my appearance and the energy it took to keep people from knowing how difficult my life seemed to be. The chatter in my head was negative about how I viewed myself.
But I’m a tough cookie and was determined that nothing is going to keep me from all that I was destined to have and I would stay the course, doing my best to rise above my self-esteem issues.
I needed my internet business because without it, I wouldn’t have the time I needed to recover and to take care of myself and my family. This is the beauty of home based entrepreneurship.
Successful people will do what they know they should do even if they don’t feel like it.
Not feeling like it, I flew to Arizona
There was an event coming up for my GRN team. For my team and for myself, I needed to be there. I put on my best game face and pretended like I didn’t have a care in the world. I tried to hide my pain. I pulled it off. But let me be very raw and honest here.
This was my first trip away from mom who was still in recovery and I was full of anxiety that if she had a relapse, I wouldn’t be able to get to her side quickly. I was scared. I also was self-conscious about my smile and my extra weight gain and lack of energy.
Have you ever hid the fact you’re really a mess and falling apart inside so that others don’t think you’re just a complainer or your making excuses?
Or hid because you’re embarrassed to let people see that you’re human with weaknesses?
Or hid because you have an image to uphold that says, “I’m together, I’m strong, I’m successful based on past results” and you fear what others may judge about you if they discover your situation has changed?
That was EXACTLY what I was going through!
I was a leader. People expected me to be that same person. So I had to be that person, even in my weakness so to not let anyone down.
Getting To An Event Took Courage
I did not feel strong at all. But I went because I knew it would be good for me. It’s important to stay connected. It was important to be filled so I could continue to give back to others.
It takes a lot of energy to hide your pain when you’re really going through crap in your life and act like everything’s fine at an event. For me, here’s how it went.
I loved the people I was around but because I was there with a mask on, it was exhausting. I didn’t want anyone to know my current pain.
Because of that, I looked forward to the end of the day as I smiled and waved to everyone, headed to my hotel room where I could shut and lock the door, be alone, and cry my eyes out to release the pain and drop the mask.
I packed my eyes through the night with a cold washrag and hotel ice to keep the puffiness down. In the morning, I put on my happy face, head out and pretend again that everything’s grand in my personal life.
My Video Below With Mark Hoverson
The video below is from one of those events. Now, because Mark had become a really close friend and business partner, he knew what was going on with me to some extent, but not fully at this time. I was hiding even some of my pain from him.
As Mark is interviewing me, notice how I’m not smiling really. I’m very careful about showing my teeth and I’ve positioned myself so the right side of my smile does not show. I was SO self-conscious between the 20 lbs I had put on and my missing teeth, but again, I knew I needed to “show up in my business” regardless.
I was hanging on, staying in there and knew I wanted to feel better, overcome this time in my life and make a difference.
Note to Mark: Thank you for showing me true friendship always.
My best friend and business partner, Stevie Knight, who I’ve known since my journey began back in 07 where we met on MySpace was also at the event. Stevie has been a prayer warrior for me through my mess since day one. (Can I just say you find out who your true friends are when you’re down and out? Thank you Stevie!) Here’s a picture of us girls.
Back Home… Can I Get Back To Normal?
Coming back from that event, I affirmed that I loved this industry, that Mom was okay while I was gone, that I loved my internet friends and I would get through my ‘life happening’ and was ready to do my best to move on.
After all, surely, the worst is behind and focusing on the future is where it’s at, right? Well...
I didn’t know this was coming…. and I bet you can relate to all of this! LOL!
The Next Month... BAM! Car Transmission Blows
A few days after getting back from the event, ( a month after my $12K transplant and tooth ordeal), I’m driving down the highway and the transmission blows out on my car. I sell it for junk parts at the local dealer in North Carolina where I’m passing through. I pull my big girl panties up and get another one.
But I am having mixed thoughts.
Thought #1 – I’m grateful I have the money to pay for it as a result of my pressing through and maintaining my internet business.
Thought #2 – Dang! I could have used this money for paid advertising. I mean, with leads not coming in, I am limited in my income. I wished I didn’t have to spend this for a car and teeth repair that should have been done correctly the first $15K.
The Next Month... BAM! Computer Crashes & I Lose Work
The very next month… no kidding, my computer crashes. I didn’t have a back up and lost work I had been doing in my business. A TON of it! It could not be fixed or recovered. I pull out more cash to buy a computer.
Should I laugh because this ‘every month events’ is getting silly or cry?
Note To Self: Always Back Up Your Content
The Next Month, BAM! My brother has a stroke and goes blind.
My brother who lives in Maryland has struggled with diabetes for several years. A nurse from the hospital there calls and says get to there, hopefully my brother can hang on until we get there to say our good-byes.
Myself, Mom, Dad, sister, we pile in the car within a half hour and start making the 12 hour drive. Dad drives through the night and we get there noon the next day.
I’m worried about Mom’s heart and whether this is going to trigger another heart attack as well as Dad trying to be strong for the family and of course, my brother, for his life.
Short story… my brother survived but he is blind and has limitation on movement..
The Next Month... BAM! Foreclosure Started on My Multiple Properties
The next month I have to let my properties go. With little new business coming in because I hadn’t been able to recouperate from YouTube turning off my lead source nor having the funds for paid advertising because I’ve been busy paying for teeth and a car and a computer and business expenses, I was no in a position to pay $7K a month toward housing that I couldn’t rent. I had carried them for months.
I tried everything to rent the properties out. There was a shortage of renters and too many rentals. I tried working with the banks. No deal. You know the story if you went through that too! I had to the let the homes go.
The Next Month... BAM! Mom Has a Second Heart Attack & Stroke
By this time, it had been 11 months since Mom’s heart attack and the family was getting a little more confident that she’ll be okay. We are still walking on eggshells trying to understand her ballooning heart syndrome.
She calls me one fall morning and says, “Honey, I think you better get here. Dad’s at the store and I’m feeling like somethings wrong“.
I call 911 and get to Mom’s who is just down the street. The paramedics work to keep her alive her for 30 minutes before they can pull out of the drive. You can't image what's going through my mind.
She’s in the hospital almost 2 weeks. I have a lot on my mind and on my plate but I’m so worried about Mom… and Dad holding up.
I really needed both of them right now. They were everything to me. I helped Mom with her recovery and in the family business. That was really the priority.
The Next Month... BAM! - Forced Into Bankruptcy
The next month, my attorney told me that I would either need to come up with hundreds of thousands of dollars on deficiency judgments after foreclosures on several mortgages plus the HOA’s...
…or, I could file bankruptcy to protect myself and give myself a chance to start over. Either way he said would lead to eventual bankruptcy unless I had a gazillion dollars to pay the defidiencies.
I didn’t want to file. He said OK and of course it was my choice but to think about it.
After a couple of weeks getting other opinions from another attorney, brokers, lenders, and my mortgage holders, being told judgments were 100% for sure (which I knew) and the collections against me extremely probable and to expect it, I decided it was in my best interest. It was a no win situation.
My credit was already beat up with the foreclosures so I went with the advice of my attorney’s and filed bankruptcy.
You know, I hear people say when they file bankruptcy, that they feel good, relieved. Well, I felt like crap! There was nothing freeing or happy or satisfying about it! I hated it! I wanted my properties and my credit and my good name! I wanted to banks to work with me! I had the ability to pay if only the banks would work with me for a little bit and let me refinance. UGH!
And I knew I was in for a long credit recovery if I went this route.
The Next Month... BAM! The Ruin of My Credit Begins
I had always taken pride in my credit. I worked hard to protect it. And now darts were being thrown at it outside of my control and I would now become a cash buyer. Creditors make you feel like trash!
Have you ever tried to run a business, send kids to college, and otherwise manage life on a cash basis? It’s not convenient.
The Next Month... BAM! Worried About My Credibility
I was worried about anyone finding out about my newly developed situation and didn’t want people to think less of me. My ego was such that I was embarrassed and ashamed of what life was dealing with to me. I didn't ask for it, it just was what it was.
So I was fearful of that. I became obsessed with what others would think of my mess. And when you’re fearful, you don’t live life full out.
The Next Month... BAM! Began feeling “Burned Out” In Business
I felt like I had become tech support for team rather than a business partner. It wasn’t fun but I was allowing myself to reach out and try and help. I wanted to help. In fact, Mark Hoverson fondly referred to me as “motherly”. Geesh.. I didn’t want that either!
But the truth is, I didn’t become an entrepreneur to be tech support or the help desk. I was an entrepreneur building MY business and fully expected that others should be entrepreneurs and build their businesses too!
But when business partners complained about “I can’t do this or that” and whine about it rather than get the education that they needed, just like I did, it sucked energy from me. Energy I didn't have.
I looked at what I was willing to do to figure stuff out, and I had a hard time understanding why others would not do whatever they needed to figure stuff out for their dreams as well .
Let me say this.. I did have some business partners, still do, who are top notch. They ARE in the game. They ARE taking responsibility. They ARE doing whatever they need to do to have a better life for themselves. I was and still am so proud of them and cheer them on everyday.
The Next Month... BAM! My YouTube Channel Goes Down Again
The next month….my YouTube Channel gets suspended again. Why? Who knows! OMG! Really!? I was up to about 100 videos and BAM!
Do I need to tell you how that felt? Would this tiny little thing be the straw that wacked me a good one?
It was just getting to be too much to deal with all at once. At this moment, I didn’t have the strength to start over again.
Have you ever felt like a force was out to keep you down? I was feeling like this. What can I say but the truth.
BAM! My Body Shut Me Down – Deep Depression
Month after Month after Month, crap just kept coming at me. What the heck!?
Deep depression set in.
It was NOT my choice.
It was NOT my decision.
I used to hear people say, “Depression is a choice. Decide to think differently.“
Those who makes these kinds of statements have never experienced deep depression. It’s an ignorant statement. It’s not something you ‘think yourself out of.’
That's like saying “I broke my leg but If I will just think positively, it will fix itself”. Really, it’s an ignorant statement.
So for those of you who may be reading this and you think depression is a wussy thing to deal with, be very careful, lest it ever falls upon you. I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy.
And if I had to go through this so I have a better understanding of how depression can destroy a life in order to help others through it, I’m grateful for it. We have to look at life’s circumstances like this.
The good news is … it’s treatable… you just need someone to help you process!
3 things about depression…
1) I never thought I’d go through it.
Depression happened to OTHER people, not me. After all, I’m a strong person. I’m happy, I’m independent, I’m healthy, I know how to make things happen… so I was never going to have to worry about depression in my life.
2) 181 million people worldwide quietly suffer from it.
Many have depression and are ashamed and embarrassed so they go through the pain of hiding it everyday. This can lead to addictions. They won’t let people know or get help. I’m thankful I got help and had people who loved me through it.
3) I didn’t know it shuts your body down.
There’s a couple kinds of depression, chemical (little release of serotonin to the brain) and situational.
The kind of depression I had was called ‘situational depression‘ meaning when a person goes through a crisis and it's overwhelming in their life, their body is designed to ‘protect’ itself from having to deal with too much and depression can set in. And as the situation(s) resolves, as some time goes by, the depression lifts and you’re fine again.
My counselor told me that just ONE of the things I had gone through was enough to send most people into depression. But I had multiple things all hitting at once. Too many things in a short period of time. She explained that our body will override our thoughts and what we think to take charge and protect us.
Here’s What MY Body Told Me… Then Carried Out
I love ya but here's the deal. I gotta intervene in your life, step in and shut you down.
I have too many things I’m trying to process and handle.
I can’t resolve all of these at once and right now there is so much pain and loss and things to deal with that there’s no more room for anything else.
So, I'm going to turn you "off" for now.
I need some time. This is overwhelming.
Go to sleep. When you sleep, you can escape the pain of life."
I felt it coming on but I always thought that if I kept positive and stayed focused on my future that I could deal with anything. Right?
But here’s what happened in case you’ve never gone through this.
I woke up one morning and couldn’t get out of bed. I slept for 20 hours. I’d wake up and want to go back to sleep. I didn’t want to eat.. I just wanted to sleep.
I just thought I needed some rest and I’d be okay, because after all, I’m strong. I’m not a quitter. I can get through anything. I just needed to sleep.
So I slept and slept and slept. (It was my body escaping).
I was up long enough to reschedule coaching appointments and go back to sleep.
After a couple days of sleeping, I noticed that not only did I want to sleep but I couldn’t see a future for me, I couldn’t think straight, I couldn’t hardly walk, my strength was all but gone, literally. I was like a rag doll.
I truly felt like I was losing my life and everything I had and everyone I loved.
My finances (insecurity) again.
My worries about my credibility in my industry.
My weight gain.
My self-esteem issues.
My bone transplant and loss of smile for months.
My major relocation.
My empty nest… kids gone now.
My inability to be super woman and cope.
My life just seemed to be going the wrong direction with things I was losing.
I had tried to be a big girl and believe for the best in each situation, focusing on solutions and moving forward but I guess I got to a point where enough was enough and I hit my tolerance level. My mind was so full of things to solve, so it just shut down.
When I was awake, I was crying. I couldn’t seem to pull myself together. I wanted to go to sleep and not wake up because as long as I was sleeping, I couldn’t feel the loss in my life.
My Journey To Heal
My Parents Are Such A Great Love Gift!
My parents wrapped around me. My mom and dad are so amazing! They loved me, prayed for me and over me and provided a quiet place for me to heal and begin my journey of restoration. I had to move back home at 40 something. Who wants to do that? I had to. It was where I needed to be.
“Thank you Mom and Dad for loving me.”
Jesus Christ Is Always Faithful And My Healer
Jesus promises to never leave or forsake us and it's a promise you can count on!
I was raised in a Christian home and I understand that just because you’re a Christian, doesn’t mean that you get a “free pass” from challenges, hardship, loss and hurt.
But, we are promised that when we look to God, He is faithful to raise us up and restore us. And He did this for me. And if He did this for me, He’ll do it for you because He loves us all the same.
While we don’t always understand why things happen to us, we can stand on God’s promises that He will take what the enemy meant for our harm and use it for good and to bless others. It’s incredible. He’s already using my story to help others.
Christ has always been with me and during my times of trouble, He never left me. When there was uncertainty in every area of my life…. I was able to be certain in His faithfulness that He will turn things around. And He did.
He wiped away my tears, lifted the depression and put a new strength and purpose in my life. Part of my purpose is share my journey to inspire and encourage you and to let you know you have a great life ahead of you.
I Bathed In Personal Development
I knew that the noise in my head had to change. I had to find myself again. I had to find my value again. I had to fill up again. And so I began to read and listen to audios everyday. Sometimes hours a day.
I listened to Joyce Meyer, Joel Osteen, and many pastors I follow. I listened to John C. Maxwell, Brian Tracey, Dan Kennedy, Wayne Dyer. I listened to anything and everything I could get my hands on.
And I read. I read about overcoming, and thinking the right way and how to pull myself out of this pit. I read for help, I read for inspiration.
I listen to audio and read every day.
Leaders are readers.
Successful people read.
I needed to get back in the saddle and get my head screwed on straight again.
Reached out for Christian Counseling
I reached out to Christian counselor friend just to process all these things.. and as you know… it’s good have a listening ear, someone who can help you process and can help pick you up and get going again.
I was grateful for my internet business, the people and friends on my list, my business partners and the ability I had to work from home during this trying time in my life.
"Lifestyle doesn’t mean you’re immune to struggle, hardship and pain. It means you have CHOICES and FREEDOMS to work around those." ~ Debbie Turner
And during this time, that’s was I was doing.
I was grateful for my elifestyle!
I knew my familiar action steps.
I knew SOMETHING MUST change.
I would be 100% responsible for the CHANGE.
It had to be something I BELIEVED I could DO.
See no matter what, this formula applies. In my case,
1) The SOMETHING that MUST change was that I needed to get back on top so I can serve others and live the life I was called to.
2) The RESPONSIBILITY of making the the CHANGE was 100% MINE to take. There were people who I could reach out to talk to and process with, from attorney’s to counselors to friends and business associates, etc., but I could point fingers at nobody but me for my rebound. It was up to me to take responsibility for myself.
3) I had to find it in me to BELIEVE that I could get through this and get my life back on track and build my business.
I already had #1 and #3 down. Now I began the #2…the process of taking responsibility and this ALWAYS requires ACTION.
I GOT BACK UP
I started attending industry wide networking events to ‘get back on the horse’ so to speak. I can't begin to tell you how insecure I felt.
Here I was felling pretty good again and it felt good to be getting back but a little gun shy about people finding out "where I've been" and "what I've been up to".
The first one was with my GRN team at Mark Hoverson's house and I started to share a little of what I’d been through. It made a difference to my healing and for others.
After I shared, many come up to me and with tears in their eyes, and confided they were going through some of the same things and were grateful to see that if I can come through crap… so can they.
It’s amazing how when we can share with others what we’ve been through … that helps others to overcome too! Thank goodness we can take our mess and be a blessing to others!
I got my smile back!
As I was able to finish up my dental work, I had my smile back. I’ll never forget in the dentist’s office when they said, “Ok, we’re done.. take a look” and they handed me a mirror. I opened my mouth to smile and broke down in happy tears. I had my smile back! I had just been given my self-confidence back too!
I Was Back on the Leaderboards
I continued to market my business, adding on other affiliate programs and started blogging more, emailing more, getting back into affiliate competitions and winning.
The picture below (Didi Alchevia, Debbie Turner, Mike Dillard, Isiah Sieg, Ann Sieg) in Austin for the weekend after I teamed up with Michelle Pescolido, Erik Wilkes and Adam Holland known as “Team Voltron” for Mark Hoverson’s Info Marketing Blueprint launch.
I stayed in an attitude of gratitude. I had so much to be thankful and grateful for. I reminded myself everyday.
I sponsored more children through World Vision. I love my kids!
I joined Empower Network because I found it to be THE SOLUTION for so many people who want to make money online, just like I did back in 2007. Empower Network has everything one would need to get started.
1) A blog like this one to share my value with others.
2) Personal development audios like I had to listen to to get my head screwed on straight and back in the game.
3) The "how to technical" of applying the marketing strategies that are working today.
4) Leadership development and team building
And everything in between.
And it's all wrapped with a strong community of great individuals who say it doesn't matter what you've been through....
... or what you've done and who you are...
... or what your age is, your color is, your religion is...
... or what clothes you like or music you listen to...
... or whether you like tatoos and tank tops or 3 piece suits
... or whatever... you name it.
YOU ARE EXCEPTED! YOU MATTER! YOUR STORY MATTERS!
Empower Network is a melting pot of people with a dream for personal freedom and empowerment from around the world and I invite you to partner with me and find your voice, your passion, your freedom and acceptance also.
I was drawn to it because I was looking for a place to come back and be myself and not be afraid of that others may think. I was looking for a platform where I could take my story and share it with others to impact their lives, to help them see if I can do it, they can too.
You'll learn how to make money using the internet and begin a journey to creating your own economy, without the worries of a paycheck and time constraints. Yes, you have to work. You will have to work darn hard. You have implement and be willing to fail forward, but you can do it if you want to.
You see, I just wanted it bad enough. To me, hard is doing the 9-5 grind. That's horrific! So to learn and implement how to create the life I wanted was way easier than the thought of having to report to a job.
How bad do you want it?
Empower Network's motto:
Build A Business and Have A Life
And we'll teach you how to do that.
You can get started immediately. This was a fantastic move for myself and almost 200,000 other customers (at the time of this post) who are working towards their life dreams. My first year I made $67K part time.
Income disclaimer... Empower Network makes no guarantees of income. In fact, you may make nothing at all. It's all dependant on whether you work and grow your skillsets and of course, how committed you are to your success. See our live income statement here
I got this big ole’ check for $36K in Atlanta representing 6 months’ income.
I’m pictured with David Wood and David Sharpe.
And another a few months later….
Speaking on stage at the Fall 2013 Empower Network Washington DC event
I REALLY JUST GOT BACK TO WORK… but this time with a program where my team can duplicate following a simple 3 step system.
SO….Back On Top
It’s now I take you back to the beginning of my story at the top. I’m grateful for the experiences because I’m a stronger, more confident woman and I’ve been through the fire. Anytime you go through the fire, you come out more refined, amen?
Don’t think your struggles or pain are for nothing. They build character and you get to discover what you’re really made of. And once you’re past that, you are blessed beyond measure when you can share your story and others respond to make a better life for themselves. You help them press on.
My Journey Continues
My journey continues and will always continue because as I arrive at what I think are destinations along the way in my life, I will discover there’s always new paths to explore.
I have a great business.
I have time freedom and security.
I travel and do fun stuff with the family.
I play in my hobby industry.
There are days that I remember not too long ago that life seemed impossible and I'm grateful all the time for what I have and the challenges I've been through.
I still go through stuff....that's just life. You do too.
And like everyone else, life still happens, but our joy is in the Lord who promises we can have our best life.
For Example... My Dad Passed Away
Dad went home to Heaven in December of 2013 and I miss him very much. I pull from his love and strength on days that I'm down or have a decision to make. He was always around for brainstorming and encouragement. Dad was an entrepreneur most of his life and draw from that.
I Keep Pressing on...
I’m so grateful that I didn’t throw in the towel to my dreams of freedom! Having a lifestyle is so unbelievable, you just have to live it to find words that express it.
Why Do I Share My Story?
Aren’t I ashamed? Embarrassed?
No! I’m happy to share it!
I want to inspire you to press through and press on for the best life you can have because you know what? You deserve that!
Nobody likes to admit their failures, weaknesses and brokenness. But I have found in life that when we share our lives in an authentic way, we can reach people that would be otherwise unreachable. People are crying out for help to those who can relate and understand.
I believe people are tired of thinking they have to hide their pains and journey and through me sharing mine, it will free others to come out of hiding so they can get help, love and move forward.
It's about Empowering People!
You see… here’s how it happened for me.
When Mark Hoverson shared his story of qualifying for food stamps, living in a trailer with barely any food for his kids and drinking himself to sleep to medicate the pain of his poverty, that gave me the courage to share about my foreclosures and bankruptcy.
When Tony Rush shared his story of burnout, that gave me courage to share my story of burnout.
When Susan Sly shared her story of divorce, that gave me courage to share my of divorce.
When David Wood shares his story of being homeless living in a van, that gave me the courage to share my story of having to move back home at 49 for a few months.
When David Sharpe shared his story of drug addiction, that gave me the courage to share my story about reaching out for help with depression.
When Donald Trump shared about his early failures, it gives me permission to be okay about sharing mine.
All great industry leaders have a story, and they let the ego go, to share it with others to inspire.
When Dani Johnson talks of how she was homeless with $2.50 and living in the back of her car and went on to make her first million a year later, that gave me permission to talk about my ups and downs.
And you know what? I don’t know anyone who doesn’t have a story of some kind that involves pain and suffering, set backs and shattered dreams somewhere along the way.
So it’s time that I share my story to inspire you.
Maybe you’re a female baby boomer and you can relate to some of my story.
Maybe you’re a real estate agent or an attorney or you work in the legal field, or maybe you suffered in the past with depression, or went through a divorce.. gosh.. I don’t know.
But I hope there’s something in my story that will inspire you to keep going and create a fabulous life for yourself.
Whoever you are, I want to encourage you to never give up on yourself or your dreams.
READY TO CHANGE YOUR STORY?
If you’re reading this and are interested in making money online and you are ready to learn how to do internet marketing, this is your time.
IT'S YOUR TIME!
Join Empower Network, let’s lock arms and let’s TOGETHER, work on those changes so you can have the life you are seeking.
YOU DESERVE IT!
Here’s what to do next.
Step 1: Click on the Register Now Button Below.
Step 2: Fill in your name and best email in the form.
Step 3: Click on Submit.
Step 4: Let me know you're in and I have a new member training to help you get started. It's the SAME new member training I went through to get the results I have.
Thanks for taking the time to read about my story. I sure appreciate you! I hope I made a difference in your life!
To Your Best Lifestyle,
PS: If you care to know more about me and what I'm up to, please visit my website at www.DebbieTurner.com.
~ Where Passions and Entrepreneurship Meet Prosperity ~