Patricia Love is the author of the #1 best-selling book “Seen and (Un) Heard”, a professional life coach, NLP, and EFT who motivates and builds confidence in women, who struggle with being seen and heard in their own personal or business lives. Turning her own life around from being broke and broken at age 57, she has made it her mission to turn “her mess, into her message.”
Patricia is dedicated to supporting women through her “Healing Hoodies” mission, donating 10% of her net proceeds to Soroptimist International, A global volunteer organization that provides women and girls with access to education and training.
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We’re happy that you could join us today! Please introduce yourself to our readers. What’s your story?
Patricia Love: I’ll never forget the day I hit rock bottom. I remember being curled up on the floor in my home, completely broken, and wondering what to do with my life. It was 2009 and the Global Financial Crisis was really starting to bite. I had been a successful Realtor for many years but suddenly I found myself with no money in the bank, no income, and a terrifying $140,000 in debt.
My Mom had recently passed away and my husband had left me for somebody else. I was 57 years old, devastated, overweight, and lost. What was I supposed to do now Everything I’d worked so hard for and sacrificed so much for, had slipped away. In truth, ‘slipped away’ is an understatement. I felt as if my life had been swamped by a tsunami and everything I understood about myself, and about my life, had been carried away in a heartbeat. I’ll admit, I wallowed for a while. I felt like a victim. And I knew what it was to be a victim because, in my twenties, I had twice been the victim of rape, Once by a stranger with a gun and once by a boyfriend who beat me up and put me in the hospital.
So, when everything fell apart for me in my mid 50’s, I felt again the wave of despair, helplessness, and powerlessness that I’d felt all those years before. It all came rushing back with a power that took my breath away. But I also remembered that feeling like a victim, and living like a victim, hadn’t worked for me in my twenties and it sure as hell wasn’t going to work for me in my fifties. Let’s face it, at 57, I had less time in front of me, than was behind me. I couldn’t afford to wait until things ‘got better.’ I had to act right then and there before my future ran out on me. So …I picked myself up off that floor and took a long hard look in the mirror. It was time to get real …
I had worked hard to be successful, to be valued, loved, and appreciated. I’d given my all to improve the lives of the people around me. But I’d been like the proverbial beautiful swan, serene and unruffled on the surface…And paddling madly and desperately underneath. The harder I tried to make everything perfect … the quicker it slipped through my fingers … until it became that tsunami that swept everything away and I was left with nothing.
Being the top saleswoman in my company didn’t keep me from falling into debt. Making a ton of money didn’t keep my husband by my side. Wearing beautiful clothes didn’t make me feel beautiful. Working hard to make others happy, didn’t bring me the happiness I wanted. Being successful in business didn’t make me feel successful in life. Smiling on the outside didn’t make me smile on the inside …It was all a sham. A mask I had put on years before and had forgotten how to take off. A mask I couldn’t afford for anyone to see behind, But when everything was stripped away … there was only me, myself, and I. And that I was enough. I had to be enough!
12 years on, I look back at that tsunami with gratitude, with appreciation, and with wonder. The fever pitch of emotion and the extreme pressure of that time created the perfect conditions to break me open and reveal the real me within. I’m still a successful realtor and added coaching and author to my resume. I still inspire people to be happy. I still wear beautiful clothes. I still smile. But everything is different …I’m no longer that swan paddling desperately beneath the surface to stay upright. Now I glide through life with a feeling of ease.
I DISCOVERED ME! … I stepped off the hamster wheel that I was running on for so long, I acknowledged my mistakes and replaced them with more positive behaviors, which allowed me to release the worry that people would see through the mask. This resulted in me feeling, that I didn’t need to prove myself to anyone!
I worked hard to discover myself, but it was worth it, as now I can look in the mirror and see myself in all my brilliance, I learned to love myself, and all my imperfections. I now make my mess, my message…
CEOs and leaders usually have different motives and aspirations when getting started. Let’s go straight to the beginning. What was your primary goal for starting your business? Was it wealth, respect, or to offer a service that would help improve lives?
Patricia Love: I have always loved helping others, money was never a thought, I wanted to offer a service that would improve women’s lives. I feel that while I am on this planet, that having a purpose is important, That is why I turned my own mess into my message.
Tell us about 2 things that you like and two things that you dislike about your industry. Share what you’d like to see change and why.
Patricia Love: First off, there is no perfect industry, so we always need to roll with the ups and downs of any business. But what I dislike within the coaching industry, is the lack of transparency, and in addition, that it is all about sales, rather than helping people be better. They call it leveling up because you can make more money if you sell more courses.
I believe it should be more about the people that need help and support. Trying to blend the two, is hard…but, we need to seek and find a way to be more caring in this world, and less greed. What I love about the industry, is that you can help others no matter where you are in the world, and the feeling you get when you see positive results, in your clients.
Companies around the world are rapidly changing their work environment and organizational culture to facilitate diversity. How do you see your organizational culture changing in the next 3 years and how do you see yourself creating that change?
Patricia Love: Diversity is critical in creating a world of opportunity, a better and gentler place for all of us to live. I am dedicated to seeing and hearing the voices that work with me and being inclusive to all. I see my company as being a leader in shifting, pivoting, and pushing through any barriers that might arise. I want to see all people, of all ages, all religions, all races, have the opportunity to live their best lives, Everything starts with ourselves, so I plan to grow mentally and mindfully to make the world a better place.
According to the Michigan State University “An organization’s culture is responsible for creating the kind of environment in which the business is managed, and has a major impact on its ultimate success or failure.” What kind of culture has your organization adopted and how has it impacted your business?
Patricia Love: An inclusive environment, giving an opportunity to all. This has made an impact not only on my business in a positive way, but in my personal life. I believe it has made me not only a better leader but a better person.
Richard Branson once famously stated “There’s no magic formula for great company culture. The key is just to treat your staff how you would like to be treated.” and Stephen R. Covey admonishes to “Always treat your employees exactly as you want them to treat your best customers. What’s your take on creating a great organizational culture?
Patricia Love: Being humble, and leaving your ego at the door. Lead by example, and let your actions speak loud! Listening to the people your work with, look at things from all perspectives, Be open, sometimes we need to “change the way we look at things, and the things you look at change” Wayne Dyer
The overwhelming majority of more than 9,000 workers included in a recent Accenture survey on the future of work said they felt a hybrid work model would be optimal going forward, a major reason for that being the improved work-life balance that it offers. How do you promote work-life balance at your company?
Patricia Love: Everyone works differently with different lives, so I don’t think setting the “How-To’s “is as important, as creating a “How Can” atmosphere that will put you over the finish line. Having a high level of communication with your workforce is critical for life-work balance.
How would you describe your company’s overall culture? Give us examples.
Patricia Love: A positive experience that is inclusive, flexible, understanding, communicative, and passionate about what they do. Where the work goal is the same, and at the end of the day, a feeling of peace because everyone did the best they could.
It is believed that a company’s culture is rooted in a company’s values. What are your values and how do they affect daily life at the workplace?
Patricia Love: I believe that positive reinforcement, integrity, honesty, and transparency are imperative in the workplace, starting from the top down. When you believe in the people who work with you and give them the space and the confidence to do their jobs, your workforce will respond with quality work resulting in a happy atmosphere.
An organization’s management has a deep impact on its culture. What is your management style and how well has it worked so far?
Patricia Love: My management style is easy-going but direct, and creating an atmosphere of an open-door policy has led to great communication and positive work outcomes.
Every organization suffers from internal conflicts, whether functional or dysfunctional. Our readers would love to know, how do you solve an internal conflict?
Patricia Love: By keeping an open dialog with no judgment, listening to both sides, and looking for solutions, that will benefit both parties. Having them take a pause and get out of their comfort zone, so they can look at things from different perspectives, besides their own. Looking for a win-win usually works.
According to Culture AMP, Only 40% of women feel satisfied with the decision-making process at their organization (versus 70% of men), which leads to job dissatisfaction and poor employee retention. What is your organization doing to facilitate an inclusive and supportive environment for women?
Patricia Love: I will listen. People need and want to be heard. When you create and intentionally listen without judgement, it is amazing the positive conversation and ideas that will come from it. A company must be open and be willing to shift if necessary. The world is changing, and we need to be willing to change with it.
What role do your company’s culture and values play in the recruitment process and how do you ensure that it is free from bias?
Patricia Love: One’s company needs to stay in the know, and educate themselves on changes regularly. a conversation needs to be kept open so that new ideas and thoughts are regularly talked about. Structured interviews should be constructed, to keep everyone on the same page in regards to questions.
We’re grateful for all that you have shared so far! We would also love to know if there was one thing that you could improve about your company’s culture, what would it be?
Patricia Love: Finding more ways to help my workforce and let them know I care about them, that without them, there is no company. They are the soul and the breadth of what I do. I do not take that lightly.
This has been truly insightful and we thank you for your time. Our final question, however, might be a bit of a curveball. If you had a choice to either fly or be invisible, which would you choose and why?
Patricia Love: I would choose to be invisible because I believe people hold a lot of feelings within themselves, and if I could be a fly on the wall, I could listen and help them and or the company be better. Good or bad, it is important to know the truth, because, without it, we can’t change it.
Larry Yatch, VIP Contributor to ValiantCEO and the host of this interview would like to thank Patricia Love for taking the time to do this interview and share her knowledge and experience with our readers.
If you would like to get in touch with Patricia Love or her company, you can do it through her – Linkedin Page
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