Courage and Clarity Podcast Notes Episode 007-012: Running a Meaningful Business, Book Publishing and Community Building

Courage and Clarity Podcast Notes Episode 001-006: Starting your own Business, Contracts and Facebook Ads || The Travel Tester
Courage and Clarity is the podcast of Steph Crowder, talking with guests about their story and tips to earn an independent living doing something they love. Here are my notes from Episode 007 - 012.

Being a fan of the Fizzle Show podcast, I knew that member Steph Crowder was working on her own Podcast, so when it launched, I was hooked right away. Courage + Clarity is a unique podcast in that each guest gets two episodes: one in which they talk about their own personal story (courage) and one in which they give advice on their expert topic (clarity).

I really like Steph’s energy and her ability to summarize what her guests are saying, although sometimes, I feel that she needs to calm down a bit as she can become a bit too hyper for me and leaves not time for my own reflection or time to breathe herself, it seems :) But she does have interesting guests and a wonderful personality that really shines through in this Podcast.

In this post, I’ll share some of my favourite quotes and insights from episode 007 to 012 with you (so as each guest gets two episodes, these are basically 3 interviews), and then you can head over to the Podcast to listen to the episodes themselves if you want! Next time, I’ll continue with the future episodes.





Courage and Clarity Podcast Notes Episode 007-012: Running a Meaningful Business, Book Publishing and Community Building || The Travel Tester



Episode 007 & 008 – Blair Staky – Branding and Blogging

  • When you do keyword research, look for keywords with low competition and over 1000 results per month
  • See if you can pair your content with things that are going on in your life to give it meaningful context, for example pair fashion items with ‘going to work’ as a theme.
  • People are more likely to buy when they have an emotional connection / relationship with the products.
  • On Instagram, make sure to tag brands that feature in the photo for a chance to get re-pinned.
  • Actively engage with your audience to show you’re a real person with a message worth following.
  • Just get going today, because there is no way to grow and be further ahead than you already are.


Listen to Episode 7

Listen to Episode 8


Episode 009 & 010 – Cassandra Bodzak – Running a Soul-Centered Business & Publish a Book

  • Actively seek happiness.
  • We seek so many answers in business from the outside (who can I help? What can I sell them?), but instead ask yourself: ‘How can I go deeper inside myself and pull out things that I can share?’
  • Instead of stressing out to make money out of everything you put out there, create the space to be creative by having a steady source of income (coaching/partnering with brands).
  • What if your (day) job could be the thing that allows you to do the work that you really want to do?
  • Listen to your guidance and be unapologetic about it.
  • A book advance could be anything between $5000 – $25.000.
  • The size of your platform (blog, social, network) is really important and one of the main things publishers will look at.
  • Before you even approach a publisher, have a really good look at yourself and ask yourself if you’re being the kind of author you would give a book deal to.
  • Are you giving great content? Are you writing good blog articles? Are you already contributing to places with good writing? Do you have a clear message?
  • You need to do the work before people even begin to notice.
  • Doing a book proposal regardless whether you want to self-publish or want a publisher, is great for getting really clear.
  • A publisher is an investor, so you need a game plan on how you’re going to pay them back. Spell it all out for them.
  • Marketing Sheet (this is a ‘brainstorm sheet’, not a ‘promise sheet’!): people you’re going to reach out to, podcasts you can speak on, workshops/talks you’re going to give, giving, teaching you’re doing, shops that will sell your books, etc.
  • Mapping of the book proposal: title (different options), byline, table of contents, paragraph for each chapter, key points and excerpts for each chapter
  • The better your book proposal is, the easier it will be to write your book.
  • Be in the energy of being an author.


Listen to Episode 9

Listen to Episode 10


Episode 011 & 012 – Running a People-First Business

  • The world as we see and experience it, is heavily influenced both by our biological structure (neuroscience and mechanisms that are taking place in our brain to process and interpret visual data), as by our experiences (the psychology such as our memory, our emotional connection to things). One person can look at something and another person can look at the exact same amount of visual data that comes in through their eyes and both process and experience it slightly differently.
  • The sacrifices, the decisions that we make in order to pursue our passion, in order to build something that is uniquely ours and that has a freedom with it, an autonomy, that we wouldn’t get in a traditional workplace, is worth it.
  • I would rather look back on my life and say ‘I took a chance and it failed’, than ‘I did what was safe and I never knew what it meant to really give it a shot’.
  • It becomes clear that we can’t rely on the fact that there will be a ‘some day’. We have to understand that we have gifts and talents that we can leverage right now today to make an impact on this world, to set forth a plan for our families, to better whatever it is we care about.
  • There is always something in common with really successful business owners: it’s a combination of at one point someone believed in them and often times, that led to them believing in themselves.
  • Understand why you are hustling so hard. What is it that you want? What is your vision? You need to look forward and say ‘this is what I’m working towards’, know why you care so deeply about it. That will get you through a LOT.
  • People may have an advantage on you in any way (more money, more education, more access to tools), but YOU are the determining factor in how hard you work. No one can change that.
  • Are you willing to put in what it takes to make it happen?
  • Once you finally hit success, once you start to step into that vision, it’s only when you worked to get there that will feel fulfilling.
  • When we look externally at what other people are doing, we’re only seeing the highlights, we’re not seeing the losses, the failures, the mistakes and very rarely people open up about it. But we’re all human beings.


  • Community divides the struggle. It carries the burden with you.
  • 1 in 3 entrepreneurs struggles with either depression or anxiety.
  • People should always come first. Profits should always come second. There is enough business out there for everyone. The struggle is not with competing against one another, but it really is educating the public on why what you’re offering in the first place is a value.
  • Creating an environment in which people thrive is one of the most important things you can do.
  • When you start a business and stand in the middle of a room to announce that, you can only reach the people in that room. When you build a tribe and tell those people in the room you want to take them with you on the journey, they will leave the room and tell their friends in other rooms. You enable your business to go viral.


  • Put the SOCIAL back in Social Media. Don’t treat it as a soap box.
  • The best way to get around an algorithm is to actually generate genuine conversation about your content.
  • Analyze your platforms and look at ways you can use them to build relationships.
  • Instagram: for every 1 post you put up, comment on at least 10 posts of other people.
  • Instagram: use stories to generate conversation and reward the audience members who are listening to your content.


  • Get involved in existing communities that align with your brand, business, values.
  • Step up as a leader, volunteer, share knowledge.
  • Have the courage to step out there a little bit.


  • Build a support group with other entrepreneurs.
  • A rising tide lifts all ships


  • Rock relevant hashtags.
  • Don’t just stick them on your own post, but engage with content and the people behind it you find through them.


  • Share your heart. Have the courage to be honest and authentic.
  • Always remember you’re speaking to a specific audience member, you don’t need to appeal to all the billions people on the planet.
  • You can’t market effectively if you’re trying to market to everyone. It just doesn’t work.
  • Seth Godin: In order to build a community (tribe) around an idea, business, etc. You have to connect people to a leader, to an idea and to one another.
  • With tools like Instagram Stories and Snapchat, we have the capability to be more real than on a standard curated feed.
  • I think you’ll be surprised by how many people would much rather hear about you burning taco’s, then about your most recent award or accomplishment.

Listen to Episode 11

Listen to Episode 12


The Travel Tester - Practical Information

These were my favourite quotes from The Courage and Clarity Podcast Episode 007-012, but of course there was a TON of things that got covered in the episodes, so I can recommend giving them a listen.

What were your favourite take-aways? I’ll be sharing my favourite quotes from Episode 013-018with you soon! 



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