After a break for the summer holidays my Embracing Life (in Midlife) interview series is back - and with the gorgeous Chloe Leibowitz - Inspiring Women.
Chloe is a good friend and I have known her for probably ten years now - eighteen months ago she set up her inspirational life coaching business. She really is one of those women who I genuinely admire, as well as being a seriously lovely person, she is totally amazing, I really don;t know how she does it all - so I asked her, she definitely inspires me so if you need a little dose of inspiration today then read on and find out more about Chloe, her life and her business. And she is offering readers of Fifty & Fab a discount on her coaching packages - further details are at the end of this post.
Tell us a little bit about yourself?
I’m Chloe and I’m 41. I have two children aged 12 and 15. I’m married to Gary and he has three children aged 13, 15 and 18. Gary and I met about nine years ago and got married three years ago – we have a really great time together and love to travel, go to see movies, see friends and generally do fun things together.
I grew up locally, in Marlow, and now we live down the road in Hurley, which we love.
And tell us a little bit about your business venture and what inspired you?
My business is called “Chloe Leibowitz – Inspiring Women”, I’m trained as a Life Coach and I work with clients 1-2-1, in groups and interactive workshops. I also enjoy speaking, and am an Ambassador for a networking group called The Business Girls Network.
I specialise in working with women who are juggling their home life (house, children, husband etc) with running, or wanting to run, their own business. Things get out of balance, they neglect themselves, lack focus and organisation, and ultimately end up feeling like they “can’t” do it. I know they can, and I know I can help them get a better balance – it usually starts with putting themselves first more often, and I insist on Progress not Perfection!
What inspired me most was my own struggles to get to where I am now. Although I trained quite some time ago to be a Coach, I put everything on hold when I met my husband and we combined our family of seven! It was such a huge challenge, the youngest two were only 5, and I suddenly found myself very regularly looking after five children AND had two day jobs that I had taken whilst going through my divorce. Over the following four years I cut the day jobs down to just one, but it still only left me with about 12 hours a week to focus on any of my own business things – and generally most of that was eaten up with household things and other “normal” life stuff that had to get done!
Eventually, nearly two years ago, I took the plunge and left my day job. I was nervous, lacking confidence, and I was starting from zero! It’s been a bit of a hard slog, and there were many times that I felt like giving up – but I’m so glad I didn’t! This year has been fantastic, and the business is really moving. It’s my passion, and I want to share with my clients the tools and techniques that can help them find a better balance and follow their dreams.
What does an average day look like for you?
No two days look the same really! But it generally starts with getting up around 6.30 am, getting showered and dressed and getting the rest of the family up – sometimes it’s just me and my children if Gary is travelling with work, but other days the whole crew can be here – which is very busy! The kids are all well practiced at making breakfast, so they make what they want (they’re well versed on what’s good and not good for breakfast!) and we leave the house around 8.00 am to get to Marlow.
After the school run I could be doing anything between 8.30 am and 3.30 pm from seeing clients at home, talking to clients on the phone, running workshops, having meetings, writing blogs or scheduling social media, running my networking group or going to another one – and sometimes I might be exercising or seeing a friend for coffee.
What has been your biggest challenge?
Keeping my mindset in the right space and getting myself out there and noticed.
In 2017 when I started I was quite scared of networking, so I put it off. The result was it was extremely hard to get much awareness – I didn’t have anyone to tell about what I was doing! Finding the right networking group for me was a game changer. The Business Girls Network is incredibly supportive and I’ve met so many like-minded women I know feel like I have a team behind me. As well as building brilliant relationships and friendships, it has helped word to spread about what I do and that is how my business has built.
What advice would you pass on to someone wishing to change career in midlife?
Find your inner positive voice and let it loose!! We are so quick to tell ourselves that we “can’t” do something. Yes, you can. If you have a passion or a dream you want to follow, then work out exactly what it is, and then scale it back, step by step, so you can start making some progress. Perfection doesn’t exist, but little, small bits of progress are where the magic happens.
Do you have a signature style, an everyday look that you love?
If it’s summer I love a simple dress, and wear them pretty much every day! My style definition is a “fashionable classic” and that’s pretty accurate. I like things like jeans and a top or jumper, but with a twist of an animal print belt, or some silver trainers. I also love a good jacket! If I have a day without clients or meetings I can be found in gym clothes, even if I’m not exercising – so comfortable!
How do you balance your business with family life?
It can be tricky, but generally seems to work fairly well. My main hours are school hours, that’s when I see clients, run workshops, have my networking meet-ups. I try to get my admin done during that time too, but it can definitely spill over into evenings or perhaps weekends – but not at the expense of other things. If I have to do things in the evenings, I also make sure I’ve got time for the kids and Gary. I like down time, and I like family time, so I find it relatively easy to switch off
What is your biggest achievement to date?
If we’re talking work then it would have to be the event I just spoke at last week, where I spoke alongside the Prime Minister, Theresa May!
The event was run by Make It Your Business, an organisation that encourages women to run their own businesses. I was on a panel of three business women giving real accounts of what we do, why we do it, and what the struggles have been.
Theresa May was there to also encourage female entrepreneurs, and gave us some facts about why women make such good entrepreneurs, and how great it would be for our economy if there were many more women in business.
Just being in the same room and speaking at the same event was surreal, but then she actually quoted me and said my name in her speech!! She liked my “Progress not Perfection” strap-line!
Where do you see yourself in 5 years’ time?
I would love to pursue more speaking opportunities where I can inspire women on a wider platform. I would love to write a book and be able to appear as an expert on shows like This Morning, encouraging women to find their confidence, put themselves first, and realise that they CAN achieve the things they dream of
How can we get in touch with you and find out more about you?
My website is www.chloeleibowitz.com and email is firstname.lastname@example.org
I can be found on social media platforms:
Facebook - chloeleibowitzlife
Instagram - chloeleibowitz
Twitter - chloeleibowitz
You can message me from any of these platforms to chat to me, and I always offer a complimentary 30 minute session before anyone commits to working with me – and if you did book any coaching packages after reading this blog I can offer a 10% discount.
Gosh, thank you so much Chloe, you really do have a busy schedule but it just proves that it is possible to find the right balance in life and do what you love!
Chloe invited me to attend the Make it Your Business event - she said there was a special guest - but couldn't reveal who. I was delighted to be told when it started that it was our Prime Minister. Chloe had to stand up in front of a room full of women and with Theresa May right in the front row and do a give-minute presentation and she was awesome. The nerves didn't show. I really enjoyed Theresa May's speech too, she was extremely supportive of women in business and the benefits of networking. I am so glad I went.
In case you missed them, read my other interviews:
Embracing Life (in Midlife)
Karen | Inspire my Soul
Heidi | Walking Tours of Oxford
Jenni | Chance Coaching
Hi, I’m Michelle and my blog Fifty & Fab is all about my journey into and through my fifties. I share style tips, health and fitness inspiration, I talk about my holidays and days out and I tell you about my beauty regime and my lifestyle. I hope you might pick up a tip or two and get some inspiration!
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