A Passion for Startups, Finding Balance, and Knowing When to Quit

In this episode, I have the honor and the privilege of talking with Ande Lyons, an enthusiastic and experienced entrepreneur with a passion for startups, an MBA, and four successful businesses to her credit. Her earlier companies include venture-backed College Broadcast, a broadband media portal with over 50,000 viewers per day; Goddess Granola, a gourmet food product Ande took from recipe to manufacturing, branding, and national distribution; and Bring Back Desire, a website devoted to sharing tips, tools, and resources with couples seeking more love and intimacy in their relationship.

She now lends her expertise to start-ups as the founder and Chief Startup Officer of Startup Life with Ande Lyons. We talk about what it takes to make it as a startup founder – the advice she gives on staying resilient, getting past the grueling “glorification of entrepreneurship” that causes so many of us to lose our balance, and more. We talk about:

  • why Ande is specifically passionate about start up founders
  • how she knows that they are REALLY ready to start a business
  • why she gets very real with her clients; she shares, “If you’re seeking a smooth road, don’t start a business!”
  • managing high levels of uncertainty
  • knowing when to keep slogging and when to strategically quit
  • how she and her husband have weathered personal and professional loss, but didn’t lose each other

“I’m looking for determination, tenacity, resilience and persistence, because… go run out in traffic. If you can handle that, start a business. If you’re looking for a smooth road forget it. I’m looking for someone who is in it to win it – they’re willing to hustle, they’re willing to stretch out of their comfort zone. They may be crying the whole way, wringing their hands, I’m ok with that. It’s something about their nature that I see and can filter out in a conversation with them that they are passionate about their idea in the way that I know they will get through the days that they’ve lost hope.”

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JM: Welcome, Ande. How are you today?

AL: I am really delighted right now to be here with you, Jenn. I’m feeling fabulous and Andelicious.

JM: Love it. Same, same, same. I am excited because we have a mutual friend in common, Shannon Hernandez, and I started following you on social media and I just thought, “Gosh, this chick seems really cool. I really want to talk to her more.” I’m really pleased that I’ve got the opportunity. I’ve got you all to myself and I’m going to ask you all the things.

AL: I’m so grateful to be here and I’m so happy that Shan, The Man, brought us together because I really love the work that you’re doing in the world especially for our sisters.

JM: Likewise, absolutely. Well, start there, tell me what work you’re doing in the world, tell us a little bit more about what you do.

AL: I am a startup coach and mentor. As a startup coach, I work with founders who are launching, branding, and building their businesses, helping them along that entire route, and working with them strategically as a partner, my sleeves are rolled up. I’m helping them with every aspect of the business.

As a mentor, I volunteered to really big and one of world-renowned accelerator programs. As a volunteer, I get to work with these fabulous startup founders and with other mentors in helping them grow through an accelerator program which I highly recommend anybody starting a business, if they can apply to one. It’s great coaching.

Everyday, I get to move vicariously now through other founder’s experiences because as a woman who have launched, branded, and built four businesses of her own, I’m enjoying the fact that I get to go to sleep at night versus the founders that I’m working with who are all sleeping like babies and waking up crying every two hours.

JM: That’s interesting to me because you do have a really diverse business background. You’ve done a lot. You have worked in broadcasting, the food and beverage industry, and even relationships, how did you wind up in coaching?

AL: It was a wonderful segue, I was doing this online website that I had called Bring Back Desire. It’s helping couples stay tuned in and turned on year after year as I called it Loving and Lasting. I was noticing online so much bad advice being given to people with their businesses. People say, “Oh, yeah, there’s just the blueprint,” I’m like, “There’s no blueprint. Every business is so unique, it’s like a snowflake.”

Anyway, I have an MBA, I’ve had my four businesses, I was seeing really bad advice being given out online and I couldn’t take it anymore. I just shifted. I said, “I’ve got to go help people.” It took me a while to figure out who did I want to help, what stage of the business did I want to go into.

As I evolved myself with startup life, it took me about a year to figure out, and that’s of course, every business owner’s challenge, who is my ideal clients? Who do I really want to serve and how do they want to be served? I figured out it was the startup founder. I live in the startup capital of the US which is Boston and so I saw the folks with the pedigree degree from Harvard, MIT, or Columbia and I see them all, I mean the best resources, relationships, and network and I thought, “I could help them, absolutely, but I want to serve that underrepresented and definitely underestimated entrepreneur who…”

JM: Somebody that doesn’t have access to those resources.

AL: Exactly. I have the education, and they may not be looking to be the next unicorn, they’re looking to start a business where they may be able to feed their family, things generationally for their family, help their community out, hire people, I mean, that’s who I really wanted to help because so many of them had a great idea but they were drowning in not just uncertainty, they just didn’t have the skillset on how to build it and so bringing my wonderful clear path on how to get there and my map, it’s just I know a good entrepreneur when I meet them and someone who has what it takes and so to be able to give them some very easy tools and accessories to be successful, it’s just so joyful and a huge lift for them as well.

JM: I love that. You and I spoke earlier, we talked a little bit about the fact that you don’t charge really what you could charge because you want to make sure that you are an approachable, accessible resource for that underserved population of startup founders. What are you looking for when you’re working with entrepreneurs because you talked a few minutes ago that you know when you meet somebody and you’re like, “Okay, these people can take it all the way. These people are serious?” What are you looking for in those entrepreneurs when you say, “Okay, yes, startups can be grueling and you’re potentially spending so much time with these folks?” What are you looking for when you say, “Yup, these are the people that I want to work with?”

AL: I’m looking for determination, tenacity, resilience, and persistence because I mean, go find out in traffic and you can handle that and start a business, otherwise…

JM: That’s what it feels like sometimes.

AL: If you’re taking a slow road, forget it. I’m looking for someone who is in it to win it. What that really means is they’re willing to hustle and stretch out of their comfort zone. They may be crying the whole way, swinging their hands, I’m okay with that. It’s just something about their nature that I see and can filter out in a conversation with them that they are passionate about their idea in a way that I know that they will get through the days with just less help. I know that we can move them forward. Even if this business doesn’t work out, they will be able to pull from this a business that they can create down the road that will work out.

JM: They’re going to do something worthy no matter what.

AL: Exactly. No matter what. Daymond John says this lot from the Shark Tank, is that lots of times, because I’ll invest with someone and I’m okay if this doesn’t work out because I know they’re going to latch on to something, pivot from this, or learn something from this and I’ll invest in them again, so that’s what I’m talking about.

JM: That’s so amazing. I love that because when you and I were talking before, we talked about how oftentimes the clients that I work with, women entrepreneurs, tend to feel very isolated especially if, I think depending on life circumstances, I have two school-aged children, I take care of a parent, between my husband and I we have three businesses, we are like the most insane human beings in the world. You can become very isolated and start to think that you’re the only person who’s going through adversity and challenges and you think, “What have I gotten myself into?” It is easy to give up. I think meeting somebody like you, gosh, if I had met someone like you early on my career who just said like no matter what, you’re going to do something, everybody feels like giving up sometimes. That startup life has been a very interesting experience.

AL: It’s hard because you’re usually financially challenged as well when you’re launching the business. But if you can peel something out of your monthly net for a mentor that you can call, wind to, lean on, so much brilliance. I know this from personal experience. Having that shoulder or that person that you can just direct conversation to, “I have got this horrible problem. I have this obstacle and I can’t figure it out,” but as you start to talk, oh, my gosh, all these great information starts coming out and they’re just listening. The next thing you know is like, “Oh, my gosh, I got it. I feel awesome, this what I’m going to do.” “Okay, okay, fine.”

JM: I love that.

AL: Then they’re just probably doing their nails.

JM: But it’s so funny I recently was interviewed for Allison Hardy’s podcast and one of the things she asked me about, “What is your tip for finding clarity?” And sometimes it’s just finding someone that you can have a great conversation with, somebody who can be an active listener because oftentimes, we do know the answer, there’s just so many layers. It’s like an onion and you just need somebody to help you kind of peel away all those layers. That’s great advice, definitely to find a little bit of something that you can invest in a mentor or a coach.

You talk about something called the glorification of entrepreneurship, what does that mean? Because it sounds like it’s not a good thing.

AL: Oh, my God. You see it everywhere, “Oh, become an entrepreneur,” and you have images of Mark Zuckerberg, the Thinx founder, or all these people. Please, who are you kidding? Nobody can really be an entrepreneur, I mean, at the end of the day, this is really, really hard work. I feel that folks are making it sound like, “Oh, you’ll make a lot of money, it would be adventurous, so much fun.” It isn’t. It’s really hard. But the level of adversity that comes with the entrepreneurial journey is the best personal growth program that you can take for yourself. You’re going to find things out about yourself and in some cases, it may, “Oh, hell no, I am not an entrepreneur.”

JM: All kinds of things, the good, the bad, and the ugly.

AL: If you start to solve all the problems that come with your business, all the things that you solved are going to be great because hey, your family and friends all said, “Yeah, that’s a great idea,” which is like they’re the worst people to go to for advice about your idea. You’ve got to go and prove your hypothesis and the value proposition with strangers to see if you’re going to get paid for solving the problem they have.

A lot of times this glorification happens and it gets people going down the wrong path. You’ve got to be on purpose and have things that really you are passionate about. It doesn’t even have to be so much about your product, it can be passionate about being an entrepreneur. You have got to have that purpose for getting up in the day and bringing all of your deliciousness to the world and know that it’s going to be hard. But gosh, you’re building all your muscles of tenacity, resilience, persistence, and courage and you get stronger and easier, doesn’t always gets better but it gets easier.

JM: One thing that comes to mind too when I think about the glorification of entrepreneurship, and I’m sure that you see this probably all the time, I started my first business in 2005 and I had this very specific image in mind, “You’re supposed to grow it big, you’re supposed to have lots of employees, and you’re supposed to have this amazing office,” and don’t you know that somehow I created that and I hated every second of it. I hated the massive overhead of this beautiful office in Old Town Scottsdale, which if you’re not familiar is very expensive. I had tons of employees, huge, huge payroll numbers to meet, the stress of it was crazy. From the outside it was like, “Oh, living the American dream,” and it took me years to realize, I was back to work three weeks to the day of my C-section, I don’t know what the hell I was thinking. He’s my second one. That was a beautiful thing that I got to bring him with me so he wasn’t with somebody else for three weeks.

But I look back now and my husband comes from a big Italian family and there’s been all these, from Boston actually, so hopefully, I’ll get to meet you at some point. But always talked about having a third and I thought, “Gosh, back then, I couldn’t see doing it because I didn’t want to go back to work so fast and I couldn’t see my way out of it.” But to me that was the glorification of entrepreneurship, it was being very busy having lots of clients, employees, and working until 2:00 in the morning. It took illness and it took some pretty crazy experiences in great conversations and talking to wonderful people like you, Ande, to realize that you can make a lot of money and make a huge impact without having to do it the way that it conventionally seems like you’re supposed to be doing it. I think it’s a great topic of conversation.

AL: Absolutely. It reminds me of when I was in the throes of college broadcaster, my first big venture-backed business and it was during the dot-com craze. I was interviewed by Wired and I said to them, “Look, this culture of basically young males who are able to spend the night on the couch and that being how it’s done is not sustainable, life has much more meaning than starting the business and it is not family friendly, it is not holistic in any way, shape, or form.”

JM: You had a lot of force right there. It’s interesting, my husband has had an experience with the dot-com startup and that was very much the way it was. It was a room full of twenty-year-old developers, fueled by Red Bull and Taco Bell, it’s just really such a horrible lifestyle. It seems so cool back then, that was the glorification of that lifestyle but it was just completely unsustainable.

AL: Yeah. I mean, I’ve launched the business in ‘98 with a six-month-old that was nursing and a three-year-old toddler…

JM: You know what this is like.

AL: So I was going into the office and watching as we’re growing and growing and negotiating stock auction deals with twenty-five-year-olds, crazy, crazy time, I just knew that this was not sustainable for people. To me, it’s like a real business which means you’ve got to have boundaries.

JM: Absolutely. It’s such good advice.

AL: Yeah, and I also recently shared a meme that I used to think says it all which is your business idea doesn’t have to disrupt anything or be a unicorn, it just has to be good.

JM: Isn’t that funny, the crazy pressure we put on ourselves? I remember early on in my career where disruption, especially in social media, starting a social media and marketing company feeling like that was the disruption and then you’re chasing the dragon after that, what’s the next disruption and putting that kind of pressure and you think, “Gosh, how many businesses just forget they have to be good?” You just have to be good at what you do. If only I had you back then.

How do you deal with managing those high levels of uncertainty with a business? Because I think a lot of that pressure does come from that knowing what’s going to happen in the future so you’re trying to figure out the next brilliant idea and the next disruption. I know that is something that you deal with in terms of coaching your startup founders, how do you coach them on dealing with the uncertainty of starting a business?

AL: I have these new suggestions but first I’d like to see a show of hands simulating about the industry within which they started their businesses.

JM: Very few, I imagine.

AL: Very few of us. I remember when I started my food manufacturing business, and it was really on a dare, someone said to me, “Oh, Ande, you’ve got to turn this into a business.” I said, “Oh, hell no, are you kidding? Do you know how it is to start a business? I’m barely recovered from the last one.” He said, “No this is a great time, this is great, try to do it.” I said, “Okay, I’ll do it if I find a licensed bakery within my first phone call.”

JM: You challenged the universe.

AL: I called a local catering and said, “Hey, do you have a licensed kitchen that I could try a recipe and see if I can scale it?” And they said, “No. But I just hung up with Steve Jacobs who owns Boston Tea Cake and he’s looking for people to lease his bakery when he’s not using it.” I was like, “Oh, yeah.”

JM: Funny how the universe works.

AL: Oh, I just was not a happy camper so it was like your first kid I mean I was on page six and they were on page five and I was just very able to understand how this business was supposed to be told and I told people often, “Had I known what I was getting into, I would had just checked myself into clinic,” and he said, “No way,” ahead of time.

JM: You need an intervention.

AL: Just a lot of uncertainty and a lot of it is just not knowing. Nothing prepares you to be the CEO of your own business until you get in and start doing it and managing also the whole, are you an operator or are you an owner?

Some of these uncertainties, intense feelings of stress come from doing too much because you’re too much in the business instead of outside the business. But the thing that I focus on most with my clients is helping them understand that often, their brain is their emotional chill, cold on the business and so it’s perfectly normal for the brain to want to focus on what’s not working, what could go wrong, and then point to all the evidence, just to point all of that. This is when you really have to reign in your brain and turn it into a high-precision tool to start looking for solutions. Because if you keep seeking the problem, you’ll keep finding them.

I invite them to be curious, inquisitive, and ask the what, why, where, and who questions, and never how. Don’t ever ask how, it’s going to stress you out even more because you can just die in the depths of that question of how. Get into being curious. If you need new customers, start asking, “What would delight them? What do they desire?” If you’re seeking new capital ask, “Where can I find the best-aligned investors?” Or if you need to hire a specific role in the company ask, “What are the best reasons to come work at my business? And who has the exceptional qualities and experience to get that well?” These questions bring solutions. It keeps you curious and often you’re stepping back and your mind is open to creative problem-solving ideas and it frees you up to see the possibilities. So hope versus it’s a disaster.

JM: Often times I have found better solutions than anything I could have thought of on my own when you kind of open yourself up to asking those questions and collaborating with other people and asking for information. It’s interesting when I started my business. I went to some trade organizations and I did some networking. I had no money and I had no office when I started and so all I could afford to do is take people to coffee. But any kind of person who agreed to go with me to coffee, I would just ask them questions and I have since gone back. Thank those folks so much but it’s amazing how often times people are happy to help when you’re new at something if you’re just willing to ask the questions. That is amazing advice.

AL: And to remember, there’s a solution to every problem. I also talk about this too because I’m a huge fan of the practice of strategic quitting. Sometimes, you have to understand that sometimes instead of coping, you could be putting your skillset and experience somewhere else. So when you understand what quitting looks like ahead of time, what is it, craving for that to come together, all the negativity to it. The beauty is that all this adversity that’s taking place whether you keep your business going or not, it’s creating deeper clarity, a deeper understanding of what you want. It helps you create better results.

So the quitting comes, those who are quitting just comes with so many negative connotations because if you look at it, quitting is better than coping because quitting frees you up to excel at something else and it allows you to pivot. I also tell my clients, “Look, we have twenty-five letters in the alphabet and I know everybody is into the whole, it’s just plan A, people. Burn the ships, do all this.” No, no, no. Plan A is going to teach you something. It’s either going to work or you’re going need to pivot to plan B. Then you’re going to go into plan C, you gotta be willing to go with the flow because you come up with your great idea but your customers are always going to be telling you the best directions for you to go in.

JM: Absolutely, I completely agree. My girlfriend, Brandi, is a fabulous entrepreneur and that is one of her pieces of advice that I love and it’s what’s the answer to every marketing question, it depends on your customer. I love that.

AL: Exactly.

JM: It’s funny, you said something a minute ago to the effect of when is quitting better than coping. For you, is that kind of the yardstick measure when you talk to somebody and say, “Gosh, when stopping sounds better than continuing to cope, that’s when it’s time.” Because I mean anyone who is truly putting it on the line to start a business has those multiple points. They’re going to say, “I don’t know if I can do this anymore. This is not working out,” and then those of us who have that entrepreneurial spirit somehow kind of pick ourselves up by the bootstraps and keep going. But what is your advice to somebody when they’re kind of in that place and you say, “You know what? This is maybe not one of those times where you’re just having a bad day, maybe it’s time to think about how you pivot, wind this down, or transition to doing something different.”

AL: I can give you a clear indication. My food manufacturing which I scaled in less than twenty-four months nationally with this product and I didn’t do it by going on the shelf, I did it through food service. It was extraordinary. Now I’m into my fourth year and I’m raising another quarter million, I’m well into my fourth year and I’m going to raise its quarter million to go and manufacture what I call the Kellogg’s way which is the nice big facility in the Midwest.

Several things happened. One, agriculturally. Two of my products got hit so hard, their prices doubled, I lost my margin and destroyed. I was like, “Okay, this volume will make up for that,” and then I got hit with something we cannot predict, a storm went through upstate New York where my packaging and my manufacturing plants were about two hours apart. Both of them got hit by lightning and they were shut down for over a week. Then, my husband came home and he’s just been laid off. Those are when you go, “Alright, I got to stop.” I know you sometimes got to give, this is too many signs and from a business perspective, that’s why I check on the business. I cried for three months, I shut mycard, all of that stuff. It was a spiritual crisis for me, it was so difficult but it was a business decision and that’s just the reality.

Sometimes a flood will come through and wipe you out, mother nature, you just don’t know and the economy, all of that. You have to be looking at it as a business but also you have to say, “Is this viable on other levels? Is this business viable for me, for my family, for what I want to experience?” And you just keep calm and going. I wrote this great article based on Lady Gaga’s song, Million Reasons, you actually talked about give me one reason to stay and I asked, “What’s the one reason that you want to stay with your business because there are a million reasons why you want to quit.”

JM: I love that.

AL: Sometimes, it really is getting to the bottom which is just putting into her, at the end of her song she talks about I bowed down and pray, Lord-show-me-the-way type of thing. Sometimes you have to rely on a higher power to help you make that decision. But at the end of the day, it really will come down to business, is it sustainable? No matter in perfect conditions, are you going to be sustainable and profitable as it looks today?

And I also feel so strongly, it’s a big belief of mine that every business we want is a gift, as the best teacher provides us with a deeper toolkit to bring even more of our greatest work to the world. Don’t get caught up in the constraints of failure. Do your absolute best effort to create a successful company. It’s not work and don’t stay shackled to the belief that your bed is made and you have to sleep on it, let it go and move on to your next adventure. There are so many famous people who have these stories.

JM: We really do that to ourselves too and I don’t know if you find that equally among men and women but I do find that women tend to put that pressure on, “Well, I committed to it so here we are,” and feeling like you can’t change it when the beauty is we all continue to evolve. Your business evolves with you whether it’s your passion for who you serve changes or your product or there’s disruption in your industry – there’s that word again, disruption – but whatever those changes are, and you get to change with it, you get to evolve with it.

AL: Again, it’s not always a gender bias, but in our women friends, we tend to see women have the kitchen-table mentality which is, “I just need to work harder or I just need to get this done here and leverage with money.” A lot of times, women are not going after the dollars out there, they’re not raising their money, they’re not finding, I would say give up the money, it’s maybe $5000 or $25,000, no, go look for a million. If you want to really take revenue to a whole nother level, you’ve got to leverage other table’s money.

JM: Absolutely. I just read this really interesting statistic that something like only two percent of women who own businesses will receive funds because they’re so incredibly underfunded. The number is just staggering, it’s crazy.

AL: I invite your listeners to read Julia Pimsleur book, Million Dollar Women. It’s wonderful and it talks very much about what that is, what happens, and how we self-sabotage because of just not having the same mentality, state of mind as our moral counterparts have in understanding that. Yeah, sure, you’re going to be afraid to lose that person’s money but they’re going in with as much risk and understanding what the risks are. You’re not getting the money from widows and orphans, you’re getting your money from investors, they know what they’re doing if they put money into it.

JM: Isn’t it funny how we think that way? I’m definitely going to check that book out. Let’s pivot for just a moment because, speaking of challenges, you have some interesting things to say about sustaining your relationships when you’re starting a business. I love this article that you wrote. You wrote this article for Medium called When Your Loved One Isn’t an Entrepreneur. It was funny for me because my husband and I are both entrepreneurs so reading that through the lens of us both feeling those highs and lows about each other I’m like, “Oh, we made it this long.”

We’re going to be celebrating actually sixteen years in March and somehow we have like survived most of that time as entrepreneurs, crazy people. But you talk about some of those things that you do and you don’t share with your spouse who is not an entrepreneur and really letting them know how they can support you. I thought it was such great insight. You shared, “We lost babies, businesses, all our money, and our hormones, but we never lost each other.” How do you do that? That’s a huge statement. But any one of those things, how do you continue to stay resilient in your relationship through that loss?

AL: You got to get help. You got to have someone who has your third opinion, an observer.

JM: A tiebreaker.

AL: Yes, give you the tools. Now, I went really wild and crazy when our dot com started. We had over eight million in venture money in our dot com and we even turned down fourteen million from the City Bank at the time. We had a lot wrapped up in this and it just imploded like all the other dot-coms and we had been so close to monetizing and figuring all this stuff out. They are the one hundred employees, one hundred back then to zero and we had moved to Los Angeles.

Now we are literally down in that in Beverly Hills and we couldn’t say a civil word to each other. It was awful. We had had a couple of counselor on the East Coast. I flew her in and I had her lived with us for five days. For the first two and a half days, we were in time out in the corner most of the time. We were using angry words and hurtful words. But why did she bring us back to the love and the magic and gave us the tools to last a lifetime and practices of honoring and commitment and how to be with each other in a way that saved our marriage. It never would have lasted to that, we were just so fought with anger and fear from what we had gone through together and what we had lost together.

JM: Yeah.

AL: We’d already lost babies before our businesses. We’ve been through a lot, you would have thought we had a lot of this worked out but we didn’t. So we train that respect but also the magic of our unification and the love, the enduring love, and how do you get that back. That was how we did it. And then we’ve continued to have lots of other terrible things happen but we got through them because this wonderful woman gave us these tools. She was just really good as a relationship coach.

JM: That’s so awesome. It’s interesting because I think different kinds of losses bring sort of different emotions up and just different dynamics. I mean for us, my older son who is now completely healthy, knock on wood, he had a brain tumor when he was two and in 2009, it was like, everything at once, it was like the world was burning down around us, I miscarried.

AL: I’m so sorry.

JM: Thank you. You know what? He’s fabulous and we’re so blessed and so fortunate that it got to be a learning experience instead of an ultimate tragedy. But he got sick, I had a miscarriage, I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, the economy was in the tank, our adjusted gross income for the year, I was cleaning out our old taxes and it was like $9000 for the year and I was like, “Holy crap. I don’t even know how we’re still here.” But it just goes to show you that there’s always that light at the end of the tunnel.

But it was interesting because each of those experiences brought out something different in our relationship, both good and ugly like it was rough, it was really rough. I will say this over and over and over again, time and time again, I can’t tell you how much I wholeheartedly agree, good therapy is a game changer. I will always have a great business coach and I will always have a therapist. We are perpetual therapy people, we had so many things going on that we will keep working through for so long.

AL: Oh, you can’t really keep moving without that.

JM: You can’t, I agree.

AL: I mean you can, you’re just not going to come out healthy.

JM: Right, right, agreed. I don’t know. You just gave me a new idea. I want to move my therapist then. I didn’t even know you could do that. I love it.

AL: It’s probably something that most people wouldn’t do but I knew we could not solve our problem in fifty-five minutes. She needed to be with us hour to hour to stop the bad habits and to shift looking at each other and anger to looking at each other with love and appreciation.

Listen, just you guys for staying together, what a flurry of unfortunate events that you took, managed, got through, and fought. I think it’s a Napoleon Hill quote which is basically even every adversity situation is a golden seed of opportunity. As you said, you just get a deeper appreciation for the beauty of this life and how grateful you are for the present moment. For those of us who’ve been through such incredible torturous times, I swear every day I wake up and I’m pain-free and I’m thinking, thank you.

JM: And priorities, those things will, if you let them know, they will help you gain clarity pretty quickly, absolutely.

AL: Oh, I’m so in awe and wonder of you and your darling man, congratulations.

JM: Likewise, you too. I have loved to talking with you. I would love to talk with you again some time if you’ve got the time. You’re a wealth of information and I feel like I could just keep talking and talking to you forever and ever. Thank you so much. Congratulations on all of your success. I can’t wait to read more articles from you. I mean, you’re so wise. Tell our listeners where they can find you if they would like to reach out and get in touch.

AL: Oh, I’d love to hear from you, andelyons.com is my website. You can find me hanging out on Twitter @AndeLyons and anywhere else you can find me. If anybody’s raising money and they need a pitch deck or you’re going to an accelerator event and you need to pitch to the audience, I have a phenomenal pitch deck, do-it-yourself to gorgeous deck of slides.

JM: Is it a template?

AL: It’s a template.

JM: Okay and they can get it on your website.

AL: They can visit my website. And you can just go on the startup pitch deck and you can scroll down and listeners pop in the word Startuplife for discount on it, 20%.

JM: Ooh, that’s good. Alright, perfect. If you would like to reach out to me, please visit brandwithcatalyst.com, I would also love to hear from you and again, if you check out the blog and podcast page, you’ll be able to find the show notes for all of these resources. Ande, you’re awesome, thank you so much.

AL: Thank you, Jenn, for your generosity. I appreciate it.