If there was ever a year where we’ve stopped to reconsider our values and purpose in life, it’s 2020. During isolation, many of us had time to re-examine our lifestyles and resolved to live healthier, less stressed, more mindful lives. Through job loss or career insecurity, some of us have been forced to seek entirely new career paths. It has been a tough year, but it has also presented an opportunity to reinvent ourselves.

Stepping up to provide guidance during these turbulent times is a growing movement of soulpreneurs. They are entrepreneurs with soul, who see their work not just as a way to earn an income, but also as an expression of their higher selves. They are people who have found their soul purpose and are working to help others find theirs.

Many credit the late Sunshine Coast author and coach Yvette Luciano for coining the term ‘soulpreneur’ and instigating a movement that is now flourishing here on the Coast and beyond. Based at Yaroomba, she was the founder of holistic business school Soulpreneurs and the author of the 2018 book Soulpreneurs: Live Your Purpose, Lift Your Platform and Leap into Prosperity. Sadly, she died of breast cancer in February this year. However, her legacy lives on.

Maleny brand and marketing mentor Karla Pizzica says Yvette helped change her life and placed her firmly on the soulpreneur path. In 2016, she was suffering postnatal depression and anxiety, feeling unfulfilled in her work and lacking inspiration. Her sister suggested she attend Yvette’s Soulpreneur Sessions and she never looked back.

A performer who sang in a successful Brisbane band for many years, Karla fell into web design to earn extra income, but found it unfulfilling. It wasn’t until she discovered the soulpreneur movement that she became truly inspired in her work.

“Yvette’s course changed my life,” Karla says. “I decided to use my branding and marketing skills to help female soulpreneurs create abundant, magnetic and aligned online businesses. I realised it wasn’t the work, it was the type of client I was working with, so I niched. I now work with conscious women leaders. Women who are not just in it for the money; they’re in it to serve and help people with their wisdom, their talents and what they’ve learned over the course of their life. They are really conscious of something more. I don’t like using the word ‘spiritual’ because it can be viewed as woo-woo and too up in the clouds, so I use the word ‘conscious’.

“Conscious means you’re really aware of all parts of yourself; conscious of what your body is telling you, conscious of your emotional state, conscious of your mindset. Mindset is a really big thing – your limiting beliefs, everything that drives you and why.

“I believe alignment is being fully aligned between your emotional, mental, physical and spiritual selves. When you’re not in alignment, you always feel like something is not quite right. When you’re completely aligned, things just feel as if they fall into place.”

Karla offers a 10-week mentorship, helping clients refine their branding, messaging, content and social media strategies, while also helping them move past limiting mindsets. She recently founded the agency BRAVE, which offers ‘done for you’ premium marketing services for purpose-led women who want to focus on their business and hand over the rest to the experts.

“All the women I work with share the same ethos,” she says. “The reason I launched BRAVE was because I had so many women coming to me saying, ‘I got a website done and they didn’t understand me, they thought I was too woo woo’. If they went to a general marketing agency, they never quite hit the nail on the head.

“The other thing I do is I work with the energy of women. I work with the menstrual cycle and the moon cycle. Women don’t really work on the 24-hour clock; we work on a 28-day cycle that’s in tune with the moon, Mama earth and the cosmos. In our cycle, we have our times of momentum and our inner times. For example, I know where in my cycle I’ll have the momentum to batch create. When I’m planning a launch, I get out my diary, figure out where my cycle is and where my client’s cycle is. We know if we’re coming up to our moon time, it’s probably not going to be a good time to be outward and doing a launch.”

While not all soulpreneurs are women, it’s this tuned-in energy that separates a soulpreneur from a regular entrepreneur. “A soulpreneur comes from a space that is solid, heart-led and wanting to help raise humanity’s consciousness,” Karla says. “I do branding and marketing and I could be pretty straight if I wanted to, but I’m in this industry helping other women raise the consciousness of humanity. Rather than coming from a place of ‘me’, it’s coming from a place of ‘we’.

“Being a soulpreneur is about living your own purpose with passion. When you follow your own purpose and passion, you’re a happier human being and when you’re happier, that’s going to affect others around you by osmosis. I love seeing people get clear and in alignment with themselves. That to me is success.”

Like Karla, Tamsyn Neill found her path through Yvette Luciano’s soulpreneur course. Originally from New Zealand and now living in Yaroomba, she attended Yvette’s course in 2017 and this year launched her online wellness hub, Salty Peaches. It is designed to support women transitioning to or living a plant-based lifestyle and contains a library of plant-based recipes and meal plans, home workout plans, meditations and wellness interviews.

“Yvette saw a light within me and a potential within me,” Tamsyn says. “She made me feel like I could do anything. She made me feel like my ideas were valid and I could support and inspire other people with my journey. Yvette was an igniter of people’s inner spark. She helped women to step into the power they had within them.”

Tamsyn walked a harrowing path to find herself in the place she is now, a soulpreneur living her dream and helping others benefit from her experiences. When she was 15, she underwent major surgery to reconstruct her spine due to scoliosis and developed an addiction to pharmaceutical drugs.

“After the operation, I was placed on a morphine prescription and became reliant on it without knowing the long-term side effects. One day when the pain had lowered and I felt like I no longer needed the morphine, I stopped and my body went into shock. My systems began shutting down and I ended up in Emergency in Auckland having severe withdrawals. I do understand pharmaceuticals have their place, but for me it was really strong in my heart that I needed to learn how to work without them and find solutions that weren’t detrimental to my body. Finding long-term solutions is what led me to seeking more natural solutions, not just for my pain, but for my moods and anxiety.

“When I moved to Australia, I made friends in the wellness industry quite quickly. My partner introduced me to Yvette and I did her two-day soulpreneurs retreat. It was an incredible group of women who felt like they had found a home. They knew they had the potential to do something more with their lives, but didn’t have that guidance to bring it to fruition. Everyone there was so lit up by Yvette.

“To me, a soulpreneur is someone who dedicates their lives to finding their true purpose and passion and their true values in life and then sharing it with other people to inspire and create a positive impact. With Salty Peaches, I was coming from a place of learning with my journey and putting that into something to support other people, so they don’t have to go through what I did.

“Being a soulpreneur is spending the time to find your true values and what it means to you to live a happy, fulfilled and vibrant life – stepping into that and doing it. So many people have these beautiful ideas and know their purpose, but are still so held back. A soulpreneur has the courage to step into that power and share that light with the world and have a beautiful, positive impact.”

Rosie Chehade is another Sunshine Coast soulpreneur using her gifts to help transform the lives of people around the world. Based in Palmwoods, she is the founder of the Happiness Lifestyle website and is a life coach, speaker, mentor and author. She specialises in helping high-achieving women and business owners reclaim their wholeness, and is a business strategist for conscious entrepreneurs. Rosie has been busier than ever during the pandemic and believes it has been a time of great awakening.

“It has been a huge adjustment and a wake-up call for many people,” she says. “Not everyone has had time out. Lots of people have had to juggle the kids at home while working. But this is a phase of great transformation. Many people are becoming conscious of how they want to live their lives, how they want to conduct their business. It’s not about the old paradigms anymore, or burning the candle at both ends. This has been a wake-up to what’s really important and what really matters. What’s important is family, connection, our values and whether we are living in alignment with those values. Many people weren’t.”

Rosie says her work is not about helping people fix what is broken, but about finding they have been whole all along. “I help people wake up to the love they are and express the love in what they do, which is where it translates into their business. When they realise the truth of who they are they say, ‘wow, I get paid to be me’. There’s so much freedom and liberation in that.”

Rosie was working 16-hour days in the construction industry and was a self-described workaholic, before illness forced her to change her life. In 2007, she was at the top of her field and had 700 people working for her when her life hit a crisis point. She became chronically ill with Meniere’s disease, chronic fatigue syndrome, migraines, Graves’ disease, digestive problems and debilitating anxiety.

She embarked on a healing practice, following holistic health advocates like Deepak Chopra, Dr Andrew Weil, Dr Joe Dispenza, Bruce Lipton and Dr Walter Willett. She eventually regained her health and turned her life around, reinventing herself as a coach and mentor.

“The main thing is really healing our core wounds and our story,” she says. “Essentially it comes down to this: running a successful business is child’s play. Heal the inner child and let her play. The moment we heal our core wounds from the root, everything happens. We open the gateway. Fear blocks us. Our not-enoughness is what’s stopping us from real success. Our business is reliant on
us being able to show up as our true selves, our authentic selves. If we’re worried about being judged, that’s going to block us from being seen.”

Rosie is proud to be part of the dynamic, growing movement of soulpreneurs and says while 70 per cent of her clients are women, men are increasingly joining this new, more awakened way of doing business.

“We are living our purpose, fulfilling our mission and why we’re here on this planet,” she says. “My mission is to help others to know the perfection of who and what they are and make a difference in their world.

“Everybody that comes to me says, ‘I want this, I want that, I want more money. I want to be an expert in my industry.’ All of that is great, but to get to that you have to do the work and know your inherent worth. It’s like looking in the mirror and you finally see yourself as the universal other sees you. You are so much more than your business or your job or anything the mind can place on you. When you actually tap into that, oh my god, it’s absolute freedom.”