I’m really excited about today’s DREAM JOB feature with Siobhan Sudberry of BeFree Project. Siobhan is an amazing coach who empowers women to find their passions, set meaningful goals and live more fulfilled lives. But even more than that, Siobhan is an incredibly humble, passionate and faithful woman who believes that her God-given purpose is to help women who feel stuck and unfulfilled reclaim their passion and start to get more out of life. Siobhan can do that because she’s been there. She’s been stuck at a job that left her feeling wanting more. Now she’s encouraging women everywhere to be proactive about making life changes, and she is definitely the right woman for the job.
I had a great time interviewing Siobhan and getting to know more about her. I can tell coaching comes naturally to her because during the course of our discussion, she gave me five books to read, and she gave me the courage to cut my hair. No, seriously. I got chills listening to the conversation we had because I could hear the resolve in my voice after hearing her story and making up my mind to get the haircut. So yeah…she’s an amazing woman, and I can’t wait for you to learn more about her.
Dream Job Interview //
Siobhan Sudberry of BeFree Project
Siobhan Sudberry // Founder // Year Launched: 2014
How did you get started in coaching? How did you know this is what you wanted to do?
I’ve been coaching for about 5-6 years, but without a title. Family and friends would come to me, or I would willingly just offer my advice to them; I would also hold them accountable—if they told me they wanted to accomplish a certain goal, I would just give them an action plan and voluntarily follow-up with them and see where they were [in terms of accomplishing their goals]. I’ve always been an infectiously positive and optimistic person, always inspiring, encouraging and motivating others to be better, so coaching comes very naturally to me.
In addition to life coaching, I host events in my city called BeFree Life Class, which is a social space for positive like-minded women to come together to discuss their purpose, ambitions and dreams while being inspired and motivated to create the life they want. Each session I spotlight a woman in the city who’s living in her purpose and allow her to share her journey to being free with the attendees. I also create the BeFree Workbook for those who feel stuck, unfulfilled or unmotivated and a need a guide to jumpstart their journey to being free.
What were you doing before you launched BeFree Project?
I’ve been working in Corporate America for over 15 years, and I was with my previous employer for seven years. I always excelled and did really well, however I was unfulfilled and always felt that there was more to my life than the life I was living. I kept saying to myself, “I know this is not my calling; this is not my purpose,” but I wasn’t ready to make that step [to leave my job]. In October 2013, the company decided to close the site and all employees were permanently laid off. Initially I was a little taken aback, but the Holy Spirit spoke so clearly to me, saying this was my opportunity to take a chance on myself; now is the time to discover your purpose in life and pursue it.
How did you make the transition to entrepreneur?
I lost my job in October 2013 and then enrolled in Rosetta Thurman’s Launch Yourself Boot Camp in November or December of that year. It was a 6-week program that was all about launching your [new business]. I went through the program and I started my business in February 2014. When I was still trying to figure out what the name of the business would be, I was looking back at some of my old journals (I’ve been keeping a journal since I was 14 years old), and I wrote a lot about being free. Around that same time, I was in church reading a devotional, and the topic for that day was being free. I started playing around with the concept of being free, and settled on the name “BeFree Project.” Once I had the name and had taken Rosetta Thurman’s course, I told my friends and family about my new business, I changed my handles on social media to my business name, and I started blogging. Shortly after, I started getting clients. It was confirmation that I was going in the right direction.
In order for me to fully walk into my purpose I had to get really clear about what I wanted and didn’t want for my life. I went through a process of cutting off my hair, going to therapy and then losing my job for me to really get to know Siobhan and begin the process of creating the life I desired. I always say that I am on a journey to being the best me possible. It’s so important to understand who you are as an individual prior to taking the leap into entrepreneurship.
How did you fund your business in the beginning? How long was it before you started seeing a profit?
While I was working I had paid off my credit card debt and I saved a significant amount of money. At the time I had no idea what made me start getting serious about paying off debt and saving money, but I now know that God was preparing for the launch of my business.
I offer coaching services as well as the BeFree Life Class and any products that I offer. I encourage everyone to have multiple streams of income so that you always have money flowing in from various sources.
What do you enjoy the most about owning your own business?
Every day I wake up I get to do what I love which is motivate and inspire women to be better. I get to create my own schedule and do the things that I enjoy most. My husband and I have two children and I love that I’m able to be available to them. I feel really blessed because for so long I felt stuck and unhappy in my career, and now I’m building my business by doing what I love. It’s a wonderful feeling.
What do you enjoy the least about owning your own business?
I’m a solopreneur, so it can be a little overwhelming trying to balance everything. With the marketing, writing blog post, coaching clients, creating products, planning events, I can go on and on. Plus as I mentioned above I’m a wife and mother of two school age children. I’m learning how to simply blend everything. I can’t wait for the day where I get to hire employees and have a team helping me do all these things. (laughs)
Was there ever a point when you wanted to give up?
Absolutely not! There are days when I get stressed out and feel overwhelmed. And I promise you every single time I have those days I receive an email, text, or message on social media from someone saying how much they’re inspired by what I do and how their life has changed based on something I said or posted. And that fuels me to keep going.
How have you gotten the word out about BeFree Project? How have you established your social media presence?
Social media has been huge for me with spreading the word about BeFree Project. Typically that’s where my clients come from, because they’ve found me on Instagram or Facebook. I’m very consistent with posting on social media and I make sure that I engage with others. Also with the BeFree Life Class I’m able to meet and connect with people offline. Lastly, I attend a lot of networking events to get the word out about BeFree Project.
What’s a typical day like for you?
I typically wake up between 5:30-6am and I start my day with a morning routine of affirmations, meditation, visualization, reading and journaling. I get my kids ready for school and then I maximize the time while they’re at school to work on BeFree Project, which consists of a lot of things. I pick up the kids from school in the afternoon, cook dinner, do homework, etc. And then I work on more business stuff in the evenings.
What’s been the most amazing moment for BeFree Project thus far?
Wow! There has been so many. But if I have to name one it would be creating the BeFree Life Workbook and receiving so much positive feedback from it has been amazing,
What advice do you have for aspiring life coaches?
My advice for aspiring life coaches and entrepreneurs is to figure out your niche and how you want to service others. Be very clear on who your ideal client is. Don’t compare yourself to anyone else, just focus on you. Know your why and let that be your motivation when you feel like giving up, always go back to why you started in the first place. Lastly, I want to share one of my favorite quotes, “Feel the fear and do it anyway.” It’s my mantra.
It’s so evident from my interview with Siobhan that she’s as encouraging and motivating as you could ever want a life coach to be. And I’m sure after learning more about her, you agree that she’s most definitely walking in her purpose!