January 5, 2022

How Getting Laid Off Was the Perfect Step for Aleya Harris to Start a Six-Figure Business

By Emily Merrell 

Instead of being disappointed by the situation that Aleya found herself in, laid off from her long-term job, she decided to take matters into her own hands. After a few years of hard work, Aleya is the founder of some very successful ventures and now shares her knowledge with entrepreneurs on a podcast. She hosts the Own it! program and she even has the ability to align your energy through bioenergetic business coaching. Read on to find out the common mistakes Aleya sees entrepreneurs making with their businesses – and how to fix them. 

Aleya Harris, founder of Flourish Marketing. Credit - aureliadamorephotography
Aleya Harris, founder of Flourish Marketing. Credit – aureliadamorephotography

SDS: What is Flourish Marketing and how did you get your start? 

ALEYA HARRIS: Let’s just say that the start of my journey wasn’t so glamorous. Like many, it started with being laid off by a corporate foodservice and facilities management company I had been working at for years. If I’m being honest, I had started to feel the tides turning earlier – but losing a job is always demoralizing. I don’t care if you’re Martha Stewart or Arianna Huffington — rejection sucks.

After some self-reflection and a considerable amount of Japanese whisky, I started to shift my perspective and look at my current jobless state as an opportunity. I decided that getting laid off was a blessing, rather than a catastrophe. Entrepreneurship had been something that returned to my mind for awhile, but I had never taken it seriously because I was stable. Why rock the boat, am I right?

So instead of updating my resume and scouring job boards, I spent my time evaluating my strengths, creating a business plan, and networking my face off. I was either going to put my whole self into this venture or nothing at all — there was no “side hustle” or “middle ground” for me.

I chose entrepreneurship and I never looked back. In the beginning, I struggled to find clarity and really get my business off the ground. I was a strong marketer, of course, but having a skill set isn’t the same as running a whole business. I definitely had moments where I felt like I was underwater, but I never questioned my decision to take the less-traveled path.

A trip to the Amazon and a few ayahuasca journeys later, I learned that a great entrepreneur isn’t the person who does all the things they think they need to do because everyone else is doing it. I decided that I was going to be the kind of entrepreneur who let my heart’s purpose drive my business direction. 

From that day forward, I chose to trust my intuition every single day. Since then, I’ve scaled Flourish Marketing to six figures, gone from near-obscurity to an award-winning marketer who speaks on national stages, grown from a solopreneur to a team of ten, replaced a scarcity mindset with one of abundance, and — most importantly — helped countless people do the same for themselves. 

The lesson here is that everyone —yes, even you reading this!— has an inner wisdom that knows exactly what you need to do to get where you want to go. Unfortunately, most people have silenced that voice in an effort to fit in with the crowd. Consider this your permission to be different and let your intuition take over from here.

SDS: Congratulations on launching your new podcast, what inspired you to kick it off? 

AH: I’m a strong believer in continuing education, so I’m always thinking about how I can provide more support to my community. As a frequent guest on other shows, it occurred to me that starting my own show was one of the best ways to reach my audience and share the invaluable knowledge that helped me launch my business to six figures in just five months.

I’m fortunate to have an amazing team of women who share my passion for helping others, so I brought the idea to them as nothing more than a passing thought. It struck a chord and, by the time that meeting ended, we were already putting together a launch plan.

Keeping up with our core values, The Flourishing Entrepreneur Podcast was made to inspire and educate energy-centered entrepreneurs with clear, actionable strategies that bust through blockages and support them in creating a business and lifestyle they love.  

SDS: You also help people with BioEnergetic Business Coaching — what does that mean and how does it influence your clients? 

AH: Bioenergetics is defined as the study and transformation of energy in living organisms. But what does this actually mean? It means that through science-backed research, trained professionals can discover how energy is exchanged throughout your body. You’re more than cells and tiny little atoms. You have energy flowing through your body every minute of every day. This energy can have a tremendous impact on your overall well-being.

Bioenergetics can help you understand where you’re blocked physically, energetically, emotionally, and spiritually. You should be working with this energy, rather than against it. Aligning what you do with what you need will allow you to discover the flow and abundance you need to thrive in life.

For entrepreneurs, their energy is tied into their business so intimately — when one is off, the other follows suit. By discovering which areas of our mind, body, and spirit need attention, we can unblock our energy and unleash abundance. And we can do so before the burnout monster truly takes over. And if you’re already struggling with burnout, bioenergetics will help you discover which specific areas you need to address to find alignment again.

In my BioEnergetic Business Coaching program, I work with my clients to dig into the root cause of what’s holding them back in business and in life so we can find a way to clear their energy blockages. Once they do, they’re able to become the entrepreneur, family member, friend, and individual that shows up as their full self, living in alignment with their goals and inviting abundance into their lives.

We combine science-based techniques, intuitive guidance, and tried-and-true revenue-driving models to get you and your business back on track. I like to think of it as a little bit of woo and a lot of practical business strategies to help entrepreneurs get to the bottom of burnout, rise out of a slump, and realign their energy and cash flows. My clients are always shocked at how much energy they reclaim as they rediscover a passion for their businesses, align their brand messaging with their core values, and fill their day with the work they love most.

SDS: What are common mistakes you see entrepreneurs making with their business? What is one easy tweak most entrepreneurs can make? 

AH: There are several I can think of, but the biggest one I see is the tendency to hoard money instead of putting it back into their businesses. This is most common with new entrepreneurs who live with a scarcity mindset — they worry that spending their hard-earned money means they’re losing it. In reality, wise entrepreneurs know that you need to spend money to make money. 

Avoiding financial investments in one’s business leads to stagnancy, burnout, and disappointment. You should be thinking about financing a new hire or a great CRM system. But dollar signs can feel scary if your money mindset operates from a place of fear. 

In fact, this mistake is so common that I created a whole guide for entrepreneurs to recalibrate their money mindset and prioritize the key investments that will support their growth. 

A few others I see a lot:

  • Letting fear run the show: Fear will always be the loudest voice if you let it! Fear isn’t a bad thing — it’s a survival tactic. But when it starts to hold you back from reaching for your full potential, then it becomes a problem. Next time fear creeps up and threatens to shrink your presence, smile and tell it: “Thanks, but no thanks!”
  • Putting rest at the bottom of their to-do list: I’m going to say this once — rest is productive. You cannot be the best version of yourself in business if your head is fuzzy and you’re yawning through sales calls. You need to be crisp, clear, and on top of your game. Prioritizing intentional rest is the only way to maintain your energy levels.
  • Skipping the boundary talk: Everybody needs boundaries — from kids on the playground who don’t want to play tag to entrepreneurs who don’t want to take client calls at night. Boundaries protect your wellbeing, allowing you to budget your time and energy to the areas that matter most: profit-driving activities, personal growth, self-care, continuing education, and quality time with loved ones. Everything else is noise, serving no purpose but to distract you from your goals.
Podcast host, coach and founder Aleya Harris. Credit -aureliadamorephotography
Podcast host, coach and founder Aleya Harris. Credit -aureliadamorephotography

SDS: If you were to retire tomorrow, what would you do with your time? 

AH: Oh, boy. Well, the first thing I would do is get a one-way ticket to Bali and disappear with my husband for an indefinite amount of time. I would get my spiritual groove on, and spend time reflecting on my accomplishments and discovering where a retired Aleya fits into the world.

Inevitably, I would miss my people and head home feeling a new sense of grounding, ready to take on the next chapter. Helping others is in my blood, so I think I would go right back to that. I’d volunteer my time and expertise to support the causes I hold near and dear to me, chair a few industry boards, and invest my energy in supporting folx as they find balance in their lives.

SDS: Anything new and or exciting happening at Flourish Marketing? How can our readers learn more about your business? 

AH: Yes! We’re always working on new ways to support the entrepreneurial community and I’m thrilled to share our new membership program, Own It! It’s a 12-month membership program full of the tried-and-true strategies entrepreneurs need to build a six (and seven!) figure business.

Own It! is the membership I needed when I started out. It’s filled with the lessons, resources, and tools I’ve picked up along the way (not without my fair share of mistakes) that have helped me to scale multiple six-figure businesses. It also provides a tight-knit cohort of femmepreneurs so nobody ever has to feel like they’re alone as they grow their businesses.

Throughout the 12 months of Own It!, members gain exclusive access to monthly empire-building training modules, an accountability planner to stay on top of goals, my 6-Figure Formula I used to scale Flourish Marketing, a cohort of like-minded entrepreneurs, and members-only networking events. For those uncertain of where to take their business next, I invite you to learn more about Own It! and sign up for our waitlist.

Outside of Own It!, we also provide full-service, holistic marketing support for businesses of all sizes and across all industries. From Strategy Sessions to clarify your brand messaging to our done-for-you Followers to Dollars social media management, we’ve got you covered. We can develop your marketing funnel, complete with lead magnets, email sequences, sales pages, and social ads. You name it, we’ve got it!

And, as mentioned earlier in this interview, our BioEnergetic Business Coaching program was made for entrepreneurs staring down the sights of burnout. If your passion has fizzled out and you’re running out of steam, this is where you need to start. All of the marketing tactics in the world can’t pull you out of burnout — you need to look within yourself first. 
Readers can also find us on Instagram at @flourishmarketing.co, @aleyaharris, @flourishingentrepreneur, and @thesocialmediapantry.

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