4 Mistakes to Avoid When Hiring Your First (or Next) Virtual Assistant

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Whether you’re ready to hire a VA (like yesterday) or are intending to hire one in the near future, this post will help you to prepare well. It’s also going to save you from hiring someone who is not really a good fit for you and your needs.

A few weeks ago a girlfriend posted asking for advice about hiring her first VA, and then a former client of mine asked me about the hiring process, and I knew it was time to write this so that more women could benefit from it.

So, if you need to hire help in growing your business and body of work, and you want to do it well the first time around, let’s dive right in:

1. Don’t Hire a Shadow VA (I Repeat: DON’T Hire a Shadow VA).

Have you ever heard of the term ‘shadow artist’ by artist and author Julia Cameron? If not, here’s the skinny: a shadow artist is an artist in hiding — an artist that hangs around other artists but doesn’t make her own art. In some ways, she denies her gifts (and what she really wants for herself), while she unconsciously fills a void by hanging around others that are doing the work she wants to do.

Look, there are virtual assistants who do NOT want to be virtual assistants, floating around everywhere in the online space. VA work is a means to an end for them. Like, they don’t actually want to take tasks and to-do’s off your plate, they’d rather be in your shoes. Usually it goes something like this: someone who wants to be running her own visionary or mission-based business says, “let me work for someone who is doing what I want to do so I can learn from them while I grow.”

And while the desire to work for someone who is doing what you want to do might seem innocent and even intelligent, in my honest opinion, it quickly becomes a conflict of interest. 



Here’s the thing: as someone who LOVES to pass off the not so exciting tasks and to-do’s to someone else, I can tell you that the energy exchange between you and the VA is everything. You DO NOT want to feel like you’re burdening someone with the tasks you’re assigning to them. NO. You want to feel excited to give them the tasks, and you want to feel that they receive them with arms wide open.



I know, I know, it IS strange (to me at least) that some people actually want to handle things like customer service, scheduling emails, setting up automations, handling client care, sending agreements, setting up opt-in pages, tracking data etc. etc. but trust me, those people DO exist and they are a total joy to work with, because you feel GREAT giving them those tasks.

What I want to help you avoid here is a) holding back the tasks and to-do’s you most need help with because you feel the person on the receiving end of said tasks is annoyed or not excited by them and b) getting into a short term work scenario in which the VA soon decides that she needs to up-level and step into her vision.

While you will want to cheer her on (rightfully so) you’ve just spent your precious energy and time training her, and now you’ll need to start over with someone new.

My fool-proof method for vetting out the shadow VAs? Ask each VA you interview a series of questions that helps you to see their big vision for themselves and their life. If their genius zone and vision for themselves doesn’t involve working on a team for you, or for someone like you, they’re not the right person for the job. Next! 


The second mistake to avoid when hiring a VA is…

2. Not Knowing What You Need (Very Specifically) Before Hiring.

Make a list of exactly what you’ll be delegating, before you start looking for someone.

What are the programs and apps you need this person to be proficient in? What tasks will you be sending to them? What are you MOST excited about taking off your plate? Keep a piece of paper near your computer or work space, and every time you catch yourself doing something you don’t really feel is the BEST use of your time, write it down. You can go back later and categorize some of these tasks or ‘energy leaks’.

Think of this as you getting clear with the Universe. You’re like, “Hey God, hey Universe, I need a supportive person to help me with my mission.” If you’re not clear on what the person will need to help you with, you’re not going to know how to choose the best fit for you, when you start the hiring process (even though you’re highly intuitive, clarity on this is still so vital).

This leads right into the third mistake to avoid…



3. Hiring Without Assigning a Test Project 



It’s not only vital that you know what tasks and to-do’s this person can take off your plate. It’s also vital that you get to know who they are. Their energy and their vibe matters. You’re going to be working closely with this person, you know? You want it to be an uplifting and supportive match. This is why I recommend having a ‘trial period’ through a test project. After the project, if you’re happy with the way it went, you can officially bring them on board. 

The test project will help you determine things like:

  • Can they communicate openly, clearly, and effectively?

  • Are they late to meetings?

  • Do they make excuses, or do they own their shortcomings and mistakes?

  • Are they happy?

  • Do they have a problem solving mindset? 
Do they gossip?

  • Do they take pride in their work?


  • Are they so bogged down by 100 clients that they bring stress into your business and creative space?

You won’t know the answers to these questions until you get started on a project together. Make an agreement to start with a test project (you of course pay them for this) and at the end of the project you can determine if you want to bring them on board, fully. 



Which leads me to ONE more mistake I want you to avoid…


4. Hiring Someone Who Doesn’t Take The Initiative 



You’re already busy. You have enough on your plate. The last thing you need is someone asking you step by step instructions on how to do something that they can easily google or find the answer for in a forum somewhere. Hire someone who can receive a task, and figure that sh*t out for you, without you needing to be super involved.



If you loved this and found it helpful, leave me an emoji in the comments below.

And, if you’ve started the process of hiring a VA leave me a ‘1’ in the comments, and if you’re ready to get started (especially after reading this) leave me a ‘2’. 



Big Love,



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If you want to:

+ Help your clients get better results

+ Free up time + energy to strategically create a group program

+ Stop hustling for your next single 1:1 session, or low-end sale

+ learn how to go high-end with your rates, effectively

Then, this is for you. Download it below for instant access. 

 
 
 

How to Prepare Financially and Energetically for the BEST Postpartum Experience Possible

photo by devany or serpent fire tarot

The first time I was pregnant (in 2013) I could not see beyond birth. Everything was about birth. There was nothing else. I just couldn’t imagine life beyond it.  

Now that I am pregnant with number two (we’re due in May), I’m not as focused on birth. Birth is going to happen, and of course I want to optimize our experience, but it’s the fourth trimester I’m really planning for.

During the vital months after my first was born, I had no help outside of my partner, Aaron, who had to go right back to work because we needed his income (and then some).

I didn’t have community.

No meal train.

No frozen bone broth or soup stock.

No help with the laundry and house.

Actually, I didn’t even have a washer or a dryer yet.

A thousand people gave us onsies, and we didn’t need them. We did need more cloth diapers. But this blog post isn’t about that.

This blog post is me taking you by the shoulders, looking you square in the eye, and telling you to prepare. A supportive postpartum requires resources. It requires you shift patterns, expectations, and basically, your entire standard of living.

You deserve that support.

You deserve the resources you need, to hire that support.

Most of us don’t live with our extended family, in community. While your mother, aunt, or sister may be nearby to help out, there’s no shame in doing what you can NOW to set yourself up for the experience you most want, and there are still energetic shifts you need to make. And, just because there are people around you to help, doesn’t mean they’ll automatically know your needs and wants.

When it comes to preparing financially, you have three options:

1. Save steadily and consistently for a duration of time until you hit your goals. You may have a goal to hire a postpartum doula, or a house cleaner, or both. You may also have a goal to make X amount per month during your maternity leave, without working. Wouldn’t it be great if young women (who want to be mothers) were encouraged to save for this long before conception, as much as they’re encouraged to marry?

2. Separate money from time, so you can create sources of income that recur without you doing work in-the-moment. This is what I call a new paradigm of money — one where you receive money for value provided, and not necessarily for time (think: create something once and sell it repeatedly). If you’re entrepreneurial you know what I’m talkin’ about here.

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3. Rely on someone else. Some women have partners who have resources that can temporarily cover everything. Other expecting women contribute significantly to the household earnings. If that’s you, it’s smart to prepare as best you can by choosing either (or both) of the options above.

When it comes to preparing energetically, focus on the following:

1. Know your desires, and own them. There is no point in attempting to ‘find your voice’ or ‘use your voice’ if you aren’t clear about exactly what you want help with. You need to get clear on your primary role and be ready to pass the rest off to your support team. Getting clear on what you do, and don’t want, will require you speak with women who’ve gone through this transition already.

2. Use your voice. Now that you know what you want and what you don’t want, it’s time to practice ASKING for help clearly, and directly. You also want to practice asking for help without guilt. Remember, you deserve this. Growing and birthing a human is epic. It may feel uncomfortable at first to raise your hand and say, “I need ____, and I don’t want ____.” but your emotional, psychological, and physical health depend on it.

3. Get used to doing less, and receiving more. This will challenge your current patterns. It challenged me tremendously (hello, type-a!). If you’re hard-wired to produce results and your self-worth is attached to those results, you’re in for it. You’ll want to practice increasing your capacity to receive support from others with grace. There are strategies, mindset shifts, and embodiment practices I can teach you, that help with this.

This kind of preparation?

There’s emotional healing involved. Self-worth work. There are mindset shifts involved. There are risks that need to be taken, and fears that need to be overcome. Becoming a mother, or becoming a mother again, changes you into a new woman.

One of my favorite experiences with birth is that it connects you even more deeply with your purpose-work. This is because birth connects you to life, AND death, simultaneously. And when you come face to face with death, you start living with less fear, and more intention. You start to claim what you want more readily, because you realize that you won’t be here forever.

Are you excited about gaining clarity and confidence around what you want your postpartum experience to look and feel like? Are you afraid of losing your creative juice and business momentum after the baby comes? Are you feeling unsure and uncertain about how to prepare for your future, energetically and financially?

Do you want to do some deep Soul journaling with me, that’ll reveal to you what patterns and beliefs you need to shift, to make your transition into a well healed, wonderfully supported, and deeply fulfilled mother?  

Whether you’re an entrepreneurial woman who is:

  • Trying to conceive

  • Already pregnant and planning for postpartum

  • Already in your postpartum

  • A new mother

I’ve got a very special PDF guide that I’m creating for you. It’s designed to help you to get clear about the kind of support you want, and help you set up a solid plan for attracting and receiving that support. Think: planning + strategy meets energy-work. Think: your vision all mapped out in one beautiful place.

Sign up here to be the first to receive the [Deeply Supported Mother Workbook] when it goes live: https://bit.ly/2GaN1t4

Big Love,

Jillian-final.png
 

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If you want to:

+ Help your clients get better results

+ Free up time + energy to strategically create a group program

+ Stop hustling for your next single 1:1 session, or low-end sale

+ learn how to go high-end with your rates, effectively

Then, this is for you. Download it below for instant access. 

 
 
 

Anger + Rage: Go Beyond Bypassing + Reactivity to Access Your Pleasure [Part 3/3 of the Liver/Gallbladder/Enema Series]

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Have you ever struggled with anger and rage?

Have you ever felt irritable and frustrated for extended periods of time, but felt totally unsure of how to shift these emotions in healthy and constructive ways, without by-passing them or getting reactive?

Have you ever feared the depths or intensity of some of your emotions?

Today, I’m here to share part III of the Coffee Enema / Liver-Gallbladder Series which features another special video interview with Healing Arts Practitioner and Transformational Feminine Embodiment Mentor, Christina Louise.

Before you watch the video (it’s super insightful) I just want to thank you so much for your comments, insights, feedback, and questions! The amount of interest expressed about the topics we’ve been sharing is SO refreshing.

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Okay, so...

In this video interview Christina and I covered:

  • The connection between the liver/gallbladder and the female reproductive system

  • How to embrace and welcome anger and rage as ‘energy in motion’

  • Healthy expressions of anger vs unhealthy expressions

  • The common trauma-coping tendency to bypass anger with laughter or sadness (and insight into why this happens)

  • Personal experiences that navigate the terrain of why it can be so hard to express the full range of our anger and rage in front of others

  • The importance of having a safe container to express yourself honestly

  • What a containment exercise is, and why it’s so important to work with tools for full-expression and permission (especially now!)

  • And more…..we go really deep in this one!

Watch the video interview here:

After you’ve tuned in, let us know in the comments below what your insights, a-ha’s, and realizations were. Has this interview helped you piece together a part of your personal healing journey? How so? Were you raised with a healthy expression of anger? Or were you raised in a family or culture that shamed and suppressed anger? Let us know in the comments below!

Did you miss Part I and Part II of this series? Get all caught up here:

Read Part I here: The Healing Power of Coffee Enemas for Liver + Gallbladder Vitality [Part 1/3]

Watch Part II here: How to Facilitate Coffee Enemas Intentionally to Radically Upgrade and Heal the Body-Mind with Christina Louise [Part 2/3]

Big Love,

Jillian + Christina Xx


You can find Christina Louise here:

Website: http://www.christinalouise.net/academy
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/sell.nick2005.2
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/christinalo...


7 Core Components_ipad_white_portrait.png

If you want to:

+ Help your clients get better results

+ Free up time + energy to strategically create a group program

+ Stop hustling for your next single 1:1 session, or low-end sale

+ learn how to go high-end with your rates, effectively

Then, this is for you. Download it below for instant access.