In late 2007, I started giving Akashic Record Readings to the general public. It has now been 10 years since I became a professional intuitive – and what a wild ride it has been! What started out as a blog to promote my readings has over the last decade turned into an online learning hub for spiritual and intuitive development that has had millions of visitors.
In this intimate, no holds barred article, I am going to share the 4 most important things I have learned in the last 10 years in this business:
Lesson #1: If you have a dream, and know it’s the right thing for you, focus on your vision and tune out the naysayers
One of things that used to annoy my mother about me was that I rarely took advice from her about anything, or from anyone who told me I couldn’t do what I wanted to do.
I was self-directed, in tune with what I wanted and how I wanted to go about it. I now think that what was once considered a shortcoming on my part has served me well in business.
To give one example, when I started out in this field (which was when the recession hit in 2007-2008) I was warned by a couple of people ‘in the know’ that the industry of psychic development was extremely crowded, a lot of people were struggling, and there was unlikely to be room for my new business.
I also had feedback from various sources close to me who thought it was ridiculous that I quit my teaching job in a recession to become an Akashic Record reader. Especially because I had no capital, no computer, no client base and no IT skills. I literally had just a couple of hundred pounds in the bank.
In hindsight, it was reckless! But the voice inside said ‘do it anyway’ and I managed to swim rather than sink.
I do remember crying the day my website went live because I stumbled upon a website belonging to someone else that seemed so similar to the vision I had for mine, and I began to wonder if it was true that there was no room for me – it had all been done before. But something inside me knew this was the right direction for me, and so I tuned out the external sources of advice and tuned in to the internal one, and followed that.
Experience has taught me that in the spiritual industry, there is always room for another business in the marketplace, as long as you’re bringing your real self to it and you’re authentic. People work with other people based on who they like and fit with, personality wise and so there is always going to be a group of people who are attracted to your personality – you’re a good fit for them.
So in this field, it is best to be yourself.
I seem to attract a lot of students who are down-to-earth and often very left-brained with it. They seem to have that weird combination I have of being spiritual yet also kind of skeptical & analytical at the same time.
Lesson #2: You can’t avoid breaking a sweat in the pursuit of something you really want
“The big secret in life is that there is no big secret. Whatever your goal, you can get there if you’re willing to work” – Oprah
One of the things I have learned as an entrepreneur over the last decade is: the more work you put in, the more successful you become. It is actually very rare to see a true ‘overnight success’ – most seeming “overnight successes” are a combination of prior preparation (i.e. putting the hours in) + being in the right place, at the right time.
Personally, I do not put much stock in ‘cosmic ordering’ or the Law of Attraction as used to build a business or a career. You might be able to find a partner this way or manifest a piece of furniture for your living room that is a bargain, but you can’t build a business through envisioning success or setting intentions that clients will find you.
I was into that when I first started out in business, because I came across trusted teachers who were espousing it – but the results were not great. And when I became more well known in the online sphere and some of those people became my colleagues (and I found out more about their lives and their businesses) it turned out they were very hard-working and dedicated. I am sure mindset and LOA had a part to play, too, but in my experience, the law of attraction is highly over-rated in the realm of business.
Of course, there are always ways you can work smarter rather than harder, but there’s no success without putting in the hard yards and the law of attraction should only be a small part of your business plan (the bigger part of your plan should focus on action) for the best results.
Lesson #3: Some people will reject you
I think this is true not just of business but of life in general.
This is a hard one for me and many other people in this field because we are a sensitive bunch. I’ve had mean emails that made me want to cry (but these are a very small proportion of the emails and feedback that I have received over the years.)
Over time I have learned not to take that personally.
We can’t always know why we are rejected – and I have come to believe that in many cases, it has nothing to do with us and whether we are ‘good enough’.
For example, let’s say you are doing online dating and you don’t get as many replies to your messages as you would like. Perhaps it is because you’re too far away geographically from the person you wrote to and she’s not up for a long distance relationship. Maybe it’s because you have 4 dogs and he is not a dog lover. Maybe he definitely wants kids soon and on your dating profile you state you’re not sure. Maybe she only dates redheads with beards!
Even the really harsh feedback or rejections are often not about us.
The most memorably harsh email I ever received was from a person who was taking my beginner’s course and did not like it – or me.
It is seared in my memory because it was so cutting and personal – criticising my character and personal qualities. It also did not make sense because this person had given positive feedback about their experience in the week prior to the email. This sense of confusion went round and round in my brain for days and I ruminated over it, in an attempt to extract some sort of lesson from it (probably in the hope that if I did so, it would never happen again.)
Shortly after the person gave me that feedback, they launched their own intuitive program very similar to the intuitive course I ran. I realised that they had not been at the learning level they should have been to benefit from a beginner’s course and they probably had not taken part with the genuine intention to increase their skills. Perhaps they were just looking around to see what else was on offer as a form of market research.
That experience taught me that when feedback is essentially a character assassination – unnecessarily personal and cutting, it is usually for reasons that don’t have a lot to do with you. I think it is important not to hide away or water oneself down in reaction to such feedback.
(And I reckon that this is true of relationships in general – not just business ones.)
There may also be the times when someone is not pleased because maybe something happened in the business and it was your fault. I have learned it is important to use feedback from incidents like those to improve and make it right with one’s customer.
What is the difference between these two forms of feedback? I have found that the feedback you need to discard will focus on what is wrong with YOU. Whereas the genuine feedback or complaints focus more on what has not met the client’s needs and on what could be improved about your product or service.
(Incidentally, I just read an excellent book on the topic of rejection by Alexandra Franzen: You’re Going to Survive: True stories about adversity, rejection, defeat, terrible bosses, online trolls, 1-star Yelp reviews, and other soul-crushing experiences―and how to get through it)
Lesson #4: don’t put all your eggs in one basket
My biggest disappointment as an online businessperson in the last 10 years has come from putting all my eggs into one basket – Mr Google’s basket!
In mid 2016, my website was doing extremely well and attracting so many visitors from Google because of all the online articles I’ve written over the years. (Blogging is my primary way of letting people know what I have to offer on this website.) I had more students and customers than I could handle and it was time to bring in some help.
I brought on board two new assistants and two guest intuitives to help me deal with all the business.
Just after I brought these people on board, a mistake was made by my web hosting company where they accidentally changed my web address from https://annasayce.com to https://annasayce.com, then to www.annasayce.com and then back to https://annasayce.com following the purchase of an SSL certificate.
Google does not respond well when you make small changes like this to your domain name. I didn’t realise it was happening at the time so I didn’t take the appropriate steps with Google to mitigate the effects on the website.
The mistake wiped out between 35-40% of my reach (and also income) overnight and it was not a temporary setback. I was saving for a deposit on a house at the time and looking to buy, and this really destabilised that dream, as it showed me that my business was actually in a very precarious position, being so dependent on the approval of one organisation.
I decided to house sit while I worked on taking some of those eggs out of that basket and putting them in other places, too.
Was this a blessing in disguise? Possibly. Losing that much income so quickly would have been really bad news if I had had a mortgage to pay so I believe this experience was showing me where my vulnerabilities were on the way to achieving my goal of home ownership – so that I could fix them. And as a result of what happened, I have a much more solid set up for this website than I had back then. It turned my focus towards a more sustainable set up for the years to come.
I think this is a lesson that is true of life in general – don’t rely on one thing for your success or security. It is good to diversify and have back up plans.
Oh, and if you are starting a website or an online business and you plan to be in it for the long haul, choose your domain name carefully. I have changed mine several times over the years, from annafrancesconlan.com to healingandinsight.com, to psychicbutsane.com to annasayce.com
If you’re not sure what your brand should be, open a website under your name and keep it. Don’t change your domain name every time you feel a new branding direction coming on – Google rewards stability and longevity. I’ve lost so much favour with Google over the years over these changes (and as a result, it is not as easy to find me online as it would have been, had I kept my original domain name).
I hope this article has been helpful for those who are looking to get into this field or anyone who is starting an online endeavour – please leave a comment below if you have something to add!
Thank you for this. It was very helpful and insightful.
Thank you, always, for being such a true and authentic light. So much love to you and your work.
I enjoy reading your insightful and truthful insights into life, in general. I bought your intuitive course some months ago and am still trying maybe too hard? I long for spiritual communication, first hand, affirming all of my heart felt beliefs. I thank you for your very good, and thoughtful, well-planned course. For me, just listening to your voice in delivering the course’s content says it all to me, for your soul’s intention. Through you I have taken advantage of readings from Debra Reeves, in New Zealand, and Lucia Roberts, just recently. Both women are right “out there”, nice and close, with their soul. Both, as well as you, exemplify caring and nurturing that is very profound! Keep up the good work. I am sensitive, as well, and have difficulty in the past and even now, with people who manage to dig into me with a hurtful or reprimanding comment. I must learn.
Thanks again, Jeffrey Wood
You know Anna, first of all thank you for this article.
When I read it,I remembered that in the past I also have similar experience,around what to do and what not to do,especially with my mom.
But when you mentioned rejection, I remember a quote that is my favorite. It says:
“Rejection is a myth. Rejection does not exist. What do you say,when someone say NO? You say NEXT.There are a lot of people on this planet. Someone will say YES”.
It is a quote of Jack Canfield’s – he is right.
Anna, I have taken several online psychic development courses and your was by far the most practical and helpful. I loved it and still use your techniques daily, nearly 12 months later. I truly appreciate your very honest and authentic approach, and the way you explain everything so clearly and practically. Thank you for being you!
I “knew” you under ‘physic but sane” and it took me a couple months to find you again, but I’m so glad I did!! Your courses and insights have been a real joy!
Thank you for this article and to you, many blessings!
I was starting out right around the time you were on my journey and was with you from the beginning. It’s true! I can sort of picture your first website when you first launched it. My journey took me in a totally different direction. I got a grad degree in psychology and did psychotherapy for a while. I practiced as a hypnosis practitioner for a few years. I mean there were other things like giving birth to and parenting 4 kids. Honestly I think I took all the conventional routes because I wanted approval so badly, to be recognized as valid. I took so many trainings in so many different modalities and I don’t even feel close to being done. I wish I did my own thang from the very beginning like you did, followed my own intuitive path and built up my brand. Now I’m relaunching myself and trying to keep more true to ME regardless of what other people think. I thank you for your article. Great reflection on your journey.
When this comment is posted, it will be Christmas in NZ. Best Holiday greetings and wishes for a splendid New Year. You are a natural teacher, and that gift is evident in all your blog posts. Thay are always fresh, engaging, instructive, and true.
Bravo! Love your photos too…..include more.
You’re inspirational Anna! Thank you so much for sharing your valuable experience.
This was a great article. I bought your akashic records program earlier this past year and never finished it because of work and then life got in the way but reading your blogs and learning about all of the other people you work with and who have helped you on this path has inspired me to finish it again. I am actually decided to go back for a second masters in counseling because i think it will be beneficial to do this work . I feel called to do spiritual work and channeling more then ever before and what you say is right its going to take work …. its not going to happen unless i make it happen and you know know8ng that my guides are here with me supporting me and knowing professionals and mentors like you are around helping and teaching your experiences and wisdom I know my dreams for thus lifestyle will come into fruition. We need more light workers out there to help people more then ever . Its time to step up and make the difference whether people support us or not, whether they poke and reject us, that’s ok . I will be ok! Thank you for this wonderful postand looking forward to working with you again in 2018!
Thank you for sharing! I needed to read this today. I still remember the reading you gave me about 8 years ago so clearly. It helped me come out of the psychic closet, and set me on my path!
Lana – thank you!
Jeffrey – thank so much you for the kind words!
Where are you up to in the course? If you need some support or troubleshooting as you work through the course, don’t forget you can log into the private members area forum and we can converse on the message boards.
Alan – love that quote!
Natasha – thank you so much for the lovely feedback on the course – I am very happy you found it helpful!
Deborah – Awesome – thank you!
Frank – thanks!
Olena – I remember you from the SR community?! On the upside, I am sure your psychology/counselling degree will stand you in really good stead for your alternative healing/intuitive work – I wouldn’t mind having one of those!
Betty – so glad that you feel inspired to go back to the course! I am here to help as you work through it.
Mei Ling – That’s so wonderful to hear! Thanks for commenting!
Thanks to everyone for your comments
Thank you so much for this article Anna! I’m in the infancy stages of learning and sorting out what I want to do with myself… what do I want to offer to the world? I’m learning, researching, and reading everything I can as I discover what I really want to pursue for a career. So often I feel the same way you did about flooding the market as another metaphysical worker, and once those feelings come about, so does the fear that maybe this is a bad idea. It gets compounded by those in my life that don’t understand it and think it’s risky… those who don’t understand my vision. All it takes is a few words from them and I’m back to doubting myself and feeling the fear to take a leap. I greatly appreciate what you’ve written here and I will print it off for myself so I can reread it over and over again when I have these moments of doubt. Not to mention all the other wonderful pieces of advice you offered.
Truly grateful to you! And wishing you Love and Light!
Thanks for commenting – I’m so glad this has given you some encouragement!