A 30-year-old entrepreneur explains how she turned a weak moment into a driving force behind her 7-figure business

Emily Williams. Courtesy of Emily Williams

When Emily Williams arrived in London in August of 2010, she was open to possibility.

The only thing she knew was that she wanted to live there — she would figure out the rest later.

“I arrived with four suitcases and a dream,” she remembers. Over the next few years, she completed her masters in nonfiction writing at City University, racking up $30,000 in credit card debt just to live but without a plan for what would come next.

Then, she had a breakthrough: In 2012, a friend sent her the website for renowned entrepreneur and coach Marie Forleo.

“There were coaches around, but I thought they were men in suits with little binders,” Williams says. “Everything clicked. I’d always wanted to help people — that’s why I got into psychology — and I also wanted this laptop lifestyle. I wanted everything I saw Marie had, and I was totally jealous. I started to research coaching more and more, and realised that’s what I was meant to do.”

Four years later, her coaching business, I Heart My Life, has earned seven figures in sales over the last 18 months. She’s worked with over 60 one-on-one clients and helped over 200 people through her group programs. Her husband was able to leave his 9-5 job as a designer to join her company, and there’s a waitlist for their four-month coaching program that costs $20,000.

Today, she doesn’t have to feel jealous.

However, Williams highlights her jealousy of Forleo as a catalyst for her own success. Since then, Williams says she’s learned to reframe any jealousy she feels as inspiration.

“If I’m ever jealous, now I know to look into whatever it is, and research it, and take notice of what someone’s doing,” she says. “That jealousy indicates it’s something I want as well. Take that feeling as inspiration and believe it’s possible for you, too. I always say I’m just a girl from Ohio with really big dreams.”

Inspiration alone isn’t enough — next, you have to take action. “What I did to fast track my success was align myself with people who had what I want,” she says. “I did the coaching certification program and hired Marie — if you’re inspired by someone, figure out how they have done it and get in their corner. Figure out what you can learn from them.”

A spark of jealousy could be a sign you’re on the right path, and an indication of who can lead you there. “For a while, I was playing that business guessing game,” Williams remembers of the days before she took action, “and I realised that was the slow route to everything I wanted.”

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