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7 Female Entrepreneurs Share Their 2019 Word of the Year and Its Importance

Self

Many studies have shown that most people fail at keeping their New Years resolutions. According to one statistic reported by U.S. News and World Report, 80% of people will fail by the second week of February.


This year, instead of making a long list of resolutions that you will most likely not stick to, try something different. Think of a word or theme that you want to focus on all year. Choose a word that will positively impact your life as a whole. The key to this exercise is to choose only ONE word; not three or five things you want to focus on for the year. Choosing just one, will keep you from being overwhelmed. It will help you stay on track and will give you clarity as you make decisions throughout the year. Weave this word into your daily routine and lifestyle. If you stay consistent and always go back to your word throughout the year, you'll see significant changes in your life and business.

Here are seven female entrepreneurs who share their 2019 Word of the Year and Why.

FUN – “I feel like we put so much focus into achievement, and then again into shutting off.. but what happened to the fun? I plan to learn how to DJ and go to as many salsa, belly dance and African dance classes as possible."

- Sahara Rose, Best-selling Ayurveda Author and Host of Highest Self Podcast

CHOICE – “The power of Choice reminds us that in every situation or decision we always have at least two options when deciding our next action step and is the basis of living free. CHOOSING our actions empowers us to feel like we're involved in life's process, and not just taking what's being given our way, and in turn, offers us the opportunity to create the life we really desire to live."

- Sara Quiriconi, Founder and Creator of the Live Free Manifesto, Unfck Your Body Series, and Author of Living {Cancer} Free

MENTAL FREEDOM – “What I've witnessed with my clients and students in 2018 is a lot of internal struggle and desire to break free from the self-imposed chains that bind them - 2018 was all about planting the seeds of mental freedom and in 2019 those seeds grow to fruition! I believe we'll all feel more free to be our most authentic selves, self-doubt and self-judgment will dissipate, and all the "shoulds" we hold against ourselves won't carry as much weight."

- Dr. Deganit Nuur, DAOM, L.Ac., MSTOM, Clairvoyant, Acupuncturist, Metaphysical Teacher

CURIOUS – “ I believe that following our curiosity is what guides us naturally in the direction of our most aligned and fulfilling life. For me, staying curious means keeping an open heart and mind, which creates space for possibilities we didn't even know existed."

- Ruby Warrington, Founder of The Numinous and Author of Sober Curious: The Blissful Sleep, Greater Focus, Limitless Presence, and Deep Connection Awaiting Us All On The Other Side of Alcohol

WOMAN EMPOWERED – “Woman working together to raise each other and support one another dreams and efforts is what I am focused on for 2019."

- Sabra Seligman, Owner of Manna Life Food, Holistic wellness expert, Plant-based nutrition coach

FAITH – “There have been many years in my life where I have completely lost faith in myself, my health, my loved ones and my purpose. This past year was a process of rebuilding that faith and I want to establish a strong foundation of faith in 2019. Faith in myself, my strong body, the loves in my life and the work I am meant to do here on earth."

- Nitika Chopra, Talk Show Host & Chronic Illness Advocate

RESILIENCE - “In a culture where we duck and dive difficulty, turmoil or failure, it's important to recognize that avoiding said setbacks is futile. Victory and progress lie in the hands of those that acknowledge the role of failure as a mentor that builds our strength and character. In my opinion, resilience is the greatest quality one can possess because it makes the bounce back faster each and every time."

- Hugette Montesinos, CEO of Disfunkshion Magazine, Speaker, Educator

Try this exercise for yourself as you start the new year. Think of this word as a way to create a lasting lifestyle mindset shift, not a short-term personal development “diet". Write this word out, put it up in places where you will be reminded of it and think of the many ways that you can embody this word in your life.

Reflect on this word. Ask yourself the following questions:

Why did you choose this word?

What will you do to embody this word?

What books can you read or listen via audiobooks to stay focused on this word?

What podcasts or audiobooks can you listen to so that you stay focused on this word?

What activities can you engage in to stay focused on this word?

Who can you surround yourself with that will keep you focused on this word?

What events can you go to that will help to stay focused on this word?

What media can you watch to stay focused on this word?

Which social media accounts can you follow to keep you focused on this word?

How will this word affect how you show up in your life, business and relationships?

What affirmations can you recite each day that will keep you focused on this word?

How will your life positively change by staying focused on this word throughout the entire year?

Stay focused on your word of the year and you'll create lasting habits and mindset shifts that will positively impact your life and business!

Culture

Why Whiskey Should No Longer Be Categorized As “A Man’s Drink”

I walk into a room full of men and I know exactly what they're thinking: "What does she know about whisky?"


I know this because many men have asked me that same question from the moment I started my career in spirits a decade ago.

In a male-dominated industry, I realized early on that I would always have to work harder than my male counterparts to prove my credibility, ability and knowledge in order to earn the trust of leadership stakeholders, coworkers, vendors and even consumers of our products. I am no stranger to hard work and appreciate that everyone needs to prove their worth when starting any career or role. What struck me however, was how the recognition and opportunities seemed to differ between genders. Women usually had to prove themselves before they were accepted and promoted ("do the work first and earn it"), whereas men often were more easily accepted and promoted on future potential. It seemed like their credibility was automatically and immediately assumed. Regardless of the challenges and adversity I faced, my focus was on proving my worth within the industry, and I know many other women were doing the same.

Thankfully, the industry has advanced in the last few years since those first uncomfortable meetings. The rooms I walk into are no longer filled with just men, and perceptions are starting to change significantly. There are more women than ever before making, educating, selling, marketing and conceptualizing whiskies and spirits of all kinds. Times are changing for the better and it's benefitting the industry overall, which is exciting to see.

For me, starting a career in the spirits business was a happy accident. Before spirits, I had worked in the hospitality industry and on the creative agency side. That background just happened to be what a spirits company was looking for at the time and thus began my journey in the industry. I was lucky that my gender did not play a deciding role in the hiring process, as I know that might not have been the case for everyone at that time.

Now, ten plus years later, I am fortunate to work for and lead one of the most renowned and prestigious Whisky brands in the world.. What was once an accident now feels like my destiny. The talent and skill that goes into the whisky-making process is what inspired me to come back and live and breathe those brands as if they were my own. It gave me a deep understanding and appreciation of an industry that although quite large, still has an incredible amount of handmade qualities and a specific and meticulous craft I have not seen in any other industry before. Of course, my journey has not been without challenges, but those obstacles have only continued to light my passion for the industry.

The good news is, we're on the right track. When you look at how many females hold roles in the spirits industry today compared to what it looked like 15 years ago, there has been a significant increase in both the number of women working and the types of roles women are hired for. From whisky makers and distillers to brand ambassadors and brand marketers, we're seeing more women in positions of influence and more spirits companies willing to stand up and provide a platform for women to make an impact. Many would likely be surprised to learn that one of our team's Whisky Makers is a woman. They might even be more surprised to learn that women, with a heightened sense of smell compared to our male counterparts, might actually be a better fit for the role! We're nowhere near equality, but the numbers are certainly improving.

It was recently reported by the Distilled Spirits Council that women today represent a large percentage of whisky drinkers and that has helped drive U.S. sales of distilled spirits to a record high in 2017. Today, women represent about 37% of the whisky drinkers in the United States, which is a large increase compared to the 1990s when a mere 15% of whisky drinkers were women. As for what's causing this change? I believe it's a mix of the acceptance of women to hold roles within the spirits industry partnered with thoughtful programs and initiatives to engage with female consumers.

While whisky was previously known for being a man's drink, reserved for after-dinner cigars behind closed doors, it is now out in the open and accessible for women to learn about and enjoy too.

What was once subculture is now becoming the norm and women are really breaking through and grabbing coveted roles in the spirits business. That said, it's up to the industry as a whole to continue to push it forward. When you work for a company that values diversity, you're afforded the opportunity to be who you are and let that benefit your business. Working under the model that the best brand initiatives come from passionate groups of people with diverse backgrounds, we are able to offer different points of view and challenge our full team to bring their best work forward, which in turn creates better experiences for our audience. We must continue to diversify the industry and break against the status quo if we really want to continue evolving.

While we've made great strides as an industry, there is still a lot of work to be done. To make a change and finally achieve gender equality in the workplace, both men and women need to stand behind the cause as we are better collectively as a balanced industry. We have proved that we have the ability to not only meet the bar, but to also raise it - now we just need everyone else to catch up.