Ellen Elizabeth is an author, sober mom to twins, recovery advocate, and infertility warrior who helps women dealing with addiction and infertility and the feelings of inadequacy that result from these conditions. In this epi...
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Welcome to the Real People, Real Business show. My name is Stephanie Hayes and I'm a business strategist and coach who loves to speak with like-minded entrepreneurs to share their real stories and the gritty details on building their businesses. On this show, you won't hear about the glamorized entrepreneurship journeys that you see online, and you won't be told how to make six figures in six weeks. If you can expect to hear real vulnerable and inspiring stories that you can relate to that have helped create the foundation for each of our guests businesses. Goodbye boss babes. Hello, real life entrepreneurs today. I'm so excited to welcome Ellen Elizabeth, who is an author that is also juggling all of the realities of the mom hood journey with twins. Welcome to the show, Ellen, and thanks so much for taking the time to share your story. Of course, I'm very excited. Thanks for having me. And I can't wait for the listeners to hear what we have to say. Me too. So why don't we dive right in? Let's hear your story. How did you get to where you are right now? What have been some of the key learnings for you? Tell us everything. Absolutely. My story's kind of complicated. It starts with, um, my journey that brought me here, which was actually struggles with addiction. Um, that led to. Both drug and alcohol addictions that I struggled with for almost 15 years. So I never, during those times really knew what I was doing with myself, what I wanted to do. I was just always feeling stuck and unhappy and kind of used drugs and alcohol to numb all the feelings of anxiety and self, like lack of self worth and those types of things. Um, I was. Drinking at certain jobs, but I never lost a job. I was very functional. Um, and it really took me getting sober. So I am now a sober twin mom and which in itself is amazing because twins are hard but I had to go to a rehab facility. To start my sobriety journey and it just kept going from there. I'm one of the few that actually made it after rehab. Um, the statistics aren't very good for people staying sober, but once my journey started, I realized how I could be an inspiration to others and how I could motivate them and hopefully help them if they're going through their own addiction struggles or if they're also sober and just wanna talk about staying sober and sobriety and. I also work with women who are dealing with infertility struggles because I went through that myself and that's how I got twins. We had to do IVF. So I really just strive to inspire and motivate and coach women. Going through any of these afflictions. So I've written a self-help memoir that is called Split Ends, and I'm working on finding a publisher for that. If I don't find a traditional publisher, I plan to self-publish it. And so that's been all in my free time and. That is essentially naptime and bedtime since I'm also a full-time mom and I have a part-time job for something completely unrelated to what I'm trying to do with my book. So it's taken me this whole journey of what people would consider really negative things happening in my life. But I have to look at it as being grateful. I actually went through those things so that now I can help others. And that's really what I'm striving to do. Yeah, I was gonna say in what free time. So , and I, you know, I had kids one at a time and I felt like it was a struggle just to get enough time to even breathe in between nap times. So tell me a little bit more about how you've, what's worked for you in terms of being able to manage and juggle and actually, you know, write a book in between. Right. Everything. So, yeah, mommying is definitely difficult. And so I started out with twins. I don't know any better, so that's kind of relieving cuz to me it's just normal to have two running around at the same time that are the same age. But, um, I. Have the kids on a pretty good schedule. Like since they were born, I had them on the same schedule, which really helped so that I wasn't just breastfeeding all day long or, you know, they were sleeping at different times and I had to deal with one while the other was asleep. I just had them. on the same schedule so that I could manage my time better with that. I've always been good at time management. It's one of my strength and strengths and, you know, good with deadlines, good with structure. But once they got older, It was really difficult cuz you know, now they're down to one nap a day and they go to bed at like the same time I wanna go to bed. So I really did my writing either at nighttime or when they were napping. And it also, I started it all at the beginning of C. So it was kind of, you know, lots of people started doing more things cuz they were stuck at home all the time. So that. Helped me be able to focus a little more just because I was. At home all the time, but it was also hard cuz the kids were always in the background. So we do have, um, some people that come in and help with the kids, which is, uh, amazing that we have a whole village basically that can help. Um, so I would take some of those free hours that I had to work on everything and it really. I had to start from the ground up. I had no idea what I was doing. Um, I took something called a bestseller master class that, um, Gabby Bernstein puts on and she's really inspirational and motivational to me. So I was excited about that and it kind of gave me the, the groundwork of what I needed to do to write a book. Um, and then I had no idea that finding a publisher would be such. Long time consuming process. So I'm still going through that process and hoping it works out, but we'll kind of see and, um, It's really just time management and making the time for yourself, which is really hard when you're a mom. Oh, absolutely. Even when you're not writing a book. Right. and I think there are a lot of people who would be really interested in, in hearing more about how you found that balance. But I would, I wanna dig a little bit into the book. So tell us more about the book. So the book, like I said, is called split ends and it goes into my mental illnesses that I've had since I was a kid. One of them is called Trico mania, which isn't very well known, but it's basically a hair pulling disorder. So, um, just due to anxiety and. Issues that I've struggled with. Um, I pick at my hair and it's kind of like an obsessive compulsive disorder. You just keep doing it over and over. Um, and some people actually get bald spots and start losing a ton of hair. I've been lucky that it wasn't that bad. But that all ties into my journey through addiction and infertility and just my long path that it took to get to where I am today as a sober twin mom. So it's, self-help in the fact that I bring up a lot of issues that people don't like talking about that make people uncomfortable. And I just wanna kind of end the stigma around those, um, ideas and issues that women face every. And from the people who I know that have written books and authored books, um, from what I understand it is it's, it's a process of processing when you're actually writing the book. And is that something that you experienced as well? Absolutely. I've always loved being a writer and I've always been good at it. I've always kept journals and to me it's very, um, Self healing and cathartic a little bit, like being able to put it down on paper, gets it out into the world. Um, and there's been times where I just need to write something down, but I don't want any, anyone to see it. So in those cases I still write it down and then I'll light it on fire or shred it up or something just cuz it feels so good to have it written on paper and it's basically. Proving that you've been through something and you need to get it out. Cuz you know, we bottle so many things up just as humans. I feel like we do that. We don't wanna talk about our deepest secrets or our darkest times. And I mean, there are still things that I don't want out there, but I think getting the really hard feelings and hard journeys and hard topics out there is very. Helpful and could possibly save someone else's life. Oh, absolutely. And it's, it's brave. It's incredibly courageous, um, especially to do it when you've done it. And I, and I think that, you know, when you write a book, it's actually the start of a journey and, uh, I'd be curious to hear your thoughts on what you feel. You know your path now that you have gotten this out and, and you have a book and where do you see that leading you? I really hope it leads to more speaking opportunities to really use the stage as teaching people and coaching them and helping them. Feel like they can get through their darkest parts of their life. Um, and I want to start more of a coaching type career to have clients that, you know, I'm helping through their issues and, um, just be the person people can lean on as a coach or as a mentor. Um, I would love to, you know, Have more awareness around these issues and be the go-to expert that people look for when they wanna talk about these things. So I'm hoping that I do have like a public Instagram and Facebook that I use, um, to inspire and I put quotes and like reels and just things related to addiction and infertility that I hope reach people in a way. I wouldn't otherwise be able to, I have some experience with sobriety and addiction from, uh, some of my close, you know, people who are close to me. And I'm curious what your, uh, your take is on sobriety and how becoming sober has changed the way you see your own path in your own path as. As an author and as a, as a brand, a personal brand that you're becoming absolutely. I, if I didn't have my sobriety, I wouldn't have any of the things that I'm working towards and I wouldn't have my family. I wouldn't have this. Career path. I never would've thought of writing a book because I was just so deep in an addiction that I thought I wasn't worth it, or I couldn't do it. Or I would compare myself to others and say, I'm not as good as them. So I just have that clearer mindset that. Enables me to try to be the best person I can be. I mean, I still mess up a lot and you know, just last week I had a terrible week and was crying all the time, felt bad about mom guilt stuff and was overwhelmed. And so I just feel that I'm comfortable talking about those things. You know, some people just want to show the perfect, perfect life and. Except that they have any issues. And I used to be that person, you know, I was showing that I had the great marriage, the great house, you know, a great job, but on the inside I was miserable and just felt completely defeated. So now I know what it's like to actually live an authentic life and be true to myself. Well that's, I mean, that's a real discussion these days, isn't it? And I think what's interesting is that we're, you know, so the I'm gonna go on a bit of a tangent here, but the, um, the advent of like TikTok for example, is fascinating to me because what we're finding is that the things that are become that are most popular and are starting to get a lot of traction, are those, those. It is not curated. It is not the, um, the polished Instagram worthy, um, feeds that we used to see. So do you, do you feel like the trend is starting to stick that this, this greater authenticity and the showing up with no makeup and the admission that we struggle is, do you feel like there's, that we're slowly working towards more openness in that. I think in general, people are starting to call it out, which is good. You know, they're, it's so unhealthy, especially for younger people who just watch YouTube and TikTok and all the feeds. And even my daughter just loves scrolling to see videos she's only three and a half, so she doesn't, you know, understand what they are, but just everyone is so into technology these days. And. People are starting to call out the fact that we're not all perfect and we need, you know, to show our authentic selves. And I know that it's getting better. Um, I think there's still a huge issue with trying to look perfect on the outside and not showing your what's really happening. I mean, some people. There's things they don't wanna talk about, like, you know, domestic abuse or trauma, which is okay. I mean, they don't need to, but in my, in my opinion, it's helpful to others to talk about things like that. Cuz I never know who I'm affecting when I do podcasts and talk about my addictions. There could be someone who's sitting drunk at home, listening, crying, like why can't I do this? And then they hear me. Staying sober. And they're like, okay, well maybe I can try it. Um, so for me being authentic is more important than being fake, but I do think it's still definitely an issue, but it is starting to be called out. And in your experience, um, What is the best approach in terms of being able to sort of bring people along who might be stuck inside the same circumstance or stuck inside the same mindset that you were in like it. So, you know, we all know that. Cold Turkey and just throwing somebody to the wolves is probably not gonna stick. And so what works, what is, what is the process of change and the process of, you know, movement away from, you know, what's, what's already troubling. So it's, in my opinion, I'm trying to plant seeds in someone's mind. I mean, they could not feel that they have a problem, but then if they read, you know, something I wrote and it's. You know, I drank two glasses of wine a night and then it turned into four bottles or something. They could be like, oh, well I have the two glasses. Maybe I should start thinking about that. Um, but the first thing people really need in order to make the change is to accept it themselves. If they're forced to go get treatment or go do something they don't wanna do, then it's not gonna work. And I think that's why there's so many negative statistics about. Who stays sober and things like that because they don't want it themselves. They're not ready. Um, and the same with, you know, conceiving a child. Like even though we were trying so hard, I was still in my alcoholism. So in the back of my head, I was like terrified to actually become pregnant, cuz I didn't know if I could quit drinking at the time. So that fear in itself was kind of holding me back and I wasn't yet ready to make the change of not drinking until, I mean a year and a half into our journey of infertility. So it was really just me making the conscious. Change. Who are you hoping to target with the book? Um, any like, or originally I was like anyone with addictions or mental illness and I was like, well, that's kind of a grand grand scheme. So right now I think it'll really help women in general, especially cuz I have the mom aspect, the fertility aspect, and then. There's such a mommy wine culture right now that I feel is pretty negative and it's kind of encouraging alcoholism and glamorizing it. And I really wanna try to reach some of those women who may be struggling with that. It's just so prevalent. And then, you know, there's all the big advertising companies that just. Suck those people in with their glamorous. This is what it's like to have two martinis every night. And it's so much fun and everyone should do it type ads. So I really wanna. Kind of bring to light that there are issues and there are ways to recover from it. Yeah. And there's, you know, you, so if you dive into the, the mommy culture and, and, um, all of the arguments on, on either side of that kind of two glasses of wine per night and, and drink some wine because you're having trouble parenting, um, I. It's real. It's real. That parenting is hard. Like it's hard, it's tiring, it's draining and it's not glamorous. And there are, you know, a lot of, there's a lot of judgment and there's a lot of, um, You know, there are a lot of sides that get taken in the whole parenting debate and you know, is it a problem to have a glass of wine every now and then cuz you wanna relax? No, of course not. But where does that start to become problematic and where, where do we find that sort of. Middle ground in the whole debate around using alcohol to soothe, as opposed to just being kind of a funny, a funny meme. Right. And I think it's, it depends on where you are because when I was drinking, I thought those were hilarious and loved them and, you know, it would share them and be like, this is me. And, you know, just again, glamorizing it and poking fun at it. So there is the aspect where it's just funny. For good humor, but you never know who is looking at it and they're already struggling and they're like, oh, well it's okay because everyone else is doing it. So it really depends on if you already feel like you may have an issue or if you're concerned, you're drinking too much. Or if you find yourself obsessing about it throughout the day, drinking earlier and earlier and using. Like feeling like you have to have it. Those are all kind of red flags. And if you're, you know, up at night Googling, am I drinking too much? You know, that's definitely a red flag too. So it's just being aware of how you're feeling towards it. And there's a lot of people who are in a sober, curious, Stage. And that's like a big movement that's taking over where there's tons of non-alcoholic beverages to try that, you know, taste like wine. And if you're just curious about not drinking or if you're doing it for, you know, a health reason, not because you think you have a problem, there's tons of things out there that are coming and making. Like an introduction into the sober, curious world. So I think it's taking off with a little momentum and becoming more of a realization that America, the culture, just in general, around the world, you know, drinking is everywhere. It's just kind of normal. And so now there's people trying to de-normalized it. And I think it's kind of becoming bigger. Yeah, I think we have, I mean, we. A lot of pressures on us. Um, as mothers, as parents, as women, as business owners, where you're never quite doing the right thing. And, and I think that part of that empowerment is being able to make your own decisions and be okay with them and be comfortable with them. And I'm, I'm curious, um, for the, the women who might be listening kind of going, oh, am I in that category? what are some of the triggers that they can watch for to understand whether it's time to take a serious look or whether we're just like going through a rough patch? Right. So generally again, like I said, if you're obsessing over it, if you feel like you can't go a day without it, if you're one glass turns into a bottle every night and it's causing you to. Not be able to parent the next morning, not being able to work, you know, just feeling if you're overall feeling bad about it, that's probably a sign that you need to look at it. If it makes you feel worse, but you feel like you need it to feel better knowing that it's gonna make you feel worse. Um, it's just kind of a vicious cycle because it convinces you that you feel better doing it, but at the same time you hate doing it. It's a really hard cycle to break, but any of the red flags are just obsessing over it, feeling like you have to have it drinking more than you want to. Anytime you drink. You know, I totally don't think it's an issue to have alcohol in like a manageable way, but there are certain things you need to look for as far as whether it's too much or not. And there's definitely. Like I said, sober, curious, online communities. There's things you can try. There's a bunch of different classes or courses that coaches put on. One of the first things I did was join Instagram. And then I started following sober people just to kind of see what they were like. And, you know, if I wanted that lifestyle and if you just kind of immerse yourself into thinking a different way, then I think it'll. Benefit them. And sort of on that thread. So you've had kind of a trifecta, a bunch of stuff going on all at once, you know, the, the addiction and the mental health and, um, you know, Infor infertility, and then having children. What have you found has been most helpful for you in terms of keeping some balance and getting, getting through to the next thing and the next thing and the next thing. And I think I really admire that, you know, you and I had this conversation a little while ago. Kind of your own path and what you see for it. And, you know, you said to me, Stephanie, like I wrote my book and I do have a vision for what could be next, but I'm sort of taking one thing at a time. And I really, I really respect that. So can you talk a little bit about what. What either mindset or tools or support, like what's been really helpful for you? Because I know there are a lot of people listening who everybody's got something, right. And we've all got the things that feel insurmountable and we're all trying to sort of trudge through our own journeys and our own path, whatever they might be and make that progress while facing all of those challenges. So I think that would be really helpful for our listeners to hear. The first thing that's become most important to me is self love and self care. Um, I realize that if I don't love myself, I'm not giving the love and attention needed to my family. I can't love them the way they need to be loved, cuz I'm just doubting myself all the time. And so I have a very strong self care routine where I actually. Tell my husband, you know, I need this time for myself and I need to, you know, do a yoga class or do an online meeting or actually go out and just have some time to myself. And he's very supportive with that. And I understand that he also needs that, you know, we're both learning as parents that. We essentially have zero time to ourselves anymore. And it's just kind of like Groundhog day every day. And it's the same thing. And then it's a new phase. It's no longer the baby phase, but it's a toddler phase. And you're just like, I don't know what I'm doing for any of these things. I'm learning as I go and it gets better. It does get better. What everyone says. I'm excited for me. If I try to do everything like you were saying, just trying to do all of it, then I get so overwhelmed and I just shut down and. I'm not able to do anything cuz I'm just overwhelmed. Yeah. And I think, you know, even, even without all of the additional things to deal with, I think that's true for a lot of people, but yeah, it, it does get better with the kids, uh, and a little, you know, I'm at that phase of my life with my kids where I feel like I'm an empty nester because they're teenagers now and they, like, I have to beg them to spend time with me. So yeah, 12, 10 years or so. And then, uh, it'll be a different story, but you know, I think this, this sort. Um, I think resilience is a really interesting topic and a really interesting, um, concept with parents, with business owners, especially with parents and business owners who are both, you know, trying to do both at the same time. Um, where do you derive your resilience from? I think I've over the years, it's just gotten. To the point where I'm like, I need to do this and I need to make a change. And if I don't, I'm just gonna stay on this path forever. And I've always been pretty resilient. Even as a kid, I would, you know, set goals for myself and achieve them. I was always an overachiever, like a perfectionist, and that all comes with my kind of OCD stuff that I have going on. But I. It was really, I lost myself in the addiction and that happened so often where you just don't recognize yourself anymore. And so during that time, I obviously was not feeling resilient, but once I was able to get out of that, I just had this new view on everything. And. Realize I need to stay resilient in order to keep the life I have. It's kind of like, I know how much I'll lose now, if I'm not resilient. And if I'm not trying to focus on myself first, I know it sounds selfish, but I have to put myself first in order to be the best for others. No, it's the whole oxygen mask thing. And I, I know it's a bit of a cliche, right. But it's, it's absolutely true. And I think for a long time, I felt like a very selfish person because I would make choices that served me as well. Um, and now I, I look back and I realize that, and I think that comes along and, and sort of trickles down to your kids as well, which I think is super important. So you've got some sites that. Um, on where you want to go with, with the work that you've created already in the body of work that you have. So the next step is finding a publisher or self-publishing. So what's that journey look like for you? It's so I've already been working on the book for two years. Um, it's the, the manuscript is ready and I've been sending, you know, query letters to different agents who would try to put me in touch with a publisher. Right now I'm really focusing on publicity. So trying to get on more podcasts, to get more guest writing posts and to kind of make a name for myself so that when people see Ellen Elizabeth, they're like, oh, she's the one who's writing this book. Maybe she'd be a good fit. And. So that's a pretty high goal. I know that traditional publishing is usually a harder route to get into, and it's so easy to self-publish a book these days. So I have set a goal to try to do that within a certain amount of time. And if it doesn't work out, I'm moving forward with self-publishing. So I at least have. A deadline. Yeah. A deadline essentially, to try to get it done. And then I will move forward. I mean, you get lots of people who self-publish and they do really well. So I know it's, it's possible for both different routes of publishing. Yeah. I know. I have some, uh, some clients and some people in my audience who. Work primarily in self-publishing and it can be quite lucrative. And I think the, the goal is to, you know, have that asset, right. Uh, you're building an asset and that asset then is the catalyst for the next phase and the next phase and the things that you wanna build. And when, you know, when it feels right, and when. You've had, have had a chance to get that out in the world and you know, then the next step would be the coaching. Then the next step is like, how do you build a business around that book? And I'd be curious to hear your thoughts on that. So it's such an important piece of what I'm working on and such a dream of mine to have a big audience and reach lots of people. And, you know, I would love. Have a book tour or, you know, even write more books after this. I have a few like children's books ideas in my head too. So I just think once it's out there and once it's in the world, it'll start making the impact I want. And from there I'm hoping that it just kind of escalates to everything else that I want. But obviously I'm working on all the backend work right now. You know, I've started my website, got a. Followers on Instagram and have a mailing list and all the things that kind of help you get running in this business, essentially. So I know it's now I know it's time consuming and you need to start small before I started, I was like, I'll write a book and it'll be published and Tata. So it's been a learning curve for sure. But I'm understanding more and more about the. You know, when we first talked a few months ago, um, you know, I, I think you said something to me to the effect of, I'm not sure that, um, you know, I I'm, you would consider me a bit to be a business owner. And I actually think that that's quite quite true that you are building a business and you're almost building it. In the reverse order of what a lot of people do, a lot of people will, you know, start their business based on a skill that they have, or like some service that they provide and then lean and then sort of migrate into a book as a form of publicity as a form of building their brand and that sort of thing. You're just starting. There and building the business out of that brand of the, of, you know, your publicity. And I think that's super interesting, but I do think that you are indeed. And in fact, a business owner, you're just at a different point in that kind of development. Very true. And so. It's it's hard for me to think, cuz I'm doing all the startup work and everything and I don't have a, you know, ton of clients and everything. So I'm like, no, I don't have a business, but it is. It's true. The way you're speaking about it, that I definitely am. I'm building it up. Kind of the opposite of what people do. And it is hard for me cuz I'm like, well, this person already has this and they got a book deal and they did this and all that. So, you know, it's so hard not to compare yourself to others, but I, I strongly believe that we're we choose our own path and we're on the right journey and everything happens in its own time, but it's hard for me. Remember that when I'm feeling defeated, I'm just like sad face. But then I remember, you know, it'll all happen when it's supposed to. I think there's advantages for everything. Like, I think you can, you know, whatever direction you choose to take, there's going to be some reason why you did and some advantage you have over someone else and maybe they have an advantage. You, it doesn't matter anymore. Right? Your, your path is your path. And as long as we keep our heads on our own, you know, our heads down and our eyes on our own paper, we will find that and we will do it in our own time and in the way that we actually, you know, that suits us and serves us. So I think your path is just as a legitimate, as you know, someone else's. And I think that you have a, you know, a wealth of opportunity to follow whatever direction feels really good at the time. And I think that's what you're really good at is recognizing that this is where I'm here right now. And I will be, I have the intention of being here at some point in time, and maybe that'll happen this way and maybe it'll happen another way, but you are in my mind, a business owner and you have created a business. And I, I think it's, I think it's totally legitimate direction and legitimate way of doing it. Um, and so tell me who. You are in terms of a brand, like, what is your unique viewpoint on, on, you know, the, the intersection of, you know, mental health and addiction and infertility and being a parent? Like what is it that people will remember you for? Well, I'm hoping they, like, we already talked, remember me for my resilience and vulnerability. I feel that I am very open compared to most people. And I say, you know, some of the worst demons that I've faced in my life, and I just want people to resonate with anything I say. Kind of in a way that they're like, whoa, no one ever talks about that, but I deal with it too. And I think a lot of what people struggle with, especially with the topics I discuss is just a fear in general. So the fear of quitting drinking, the fear of getting pregnant, the fear of having panic attacks and it. Causes you to stay stuck. So if people can just kinda look at their fears and see how those are holding them back then I think they'll make great progress to learn what to look for and what they need to do moving forward. Tell me about the, the title split ends. So it came to like originally it was gonna be something totally different. And I was just thinking of the piece about, you know, my pulling hair and. Part of what I would do would be looking for my split ends and just rip 'em out. Um, and so throughout the book, everything that I go through is part of the split end part of the hair. So it's like, you know, I have an addiction, you know, that's one split, you know, I have infertility now there's two splits type thing. Um, and so it all kind of ties together with the Trico mania. And one, one day I was just. That's kind of a cool title, just because of what I'm talking about. And then there was part of me that was like, well, I hope they don't think I'm, you know, a hairdresser or, you know, salon owner or something. But I think it's pretty powerful once you read the, about the book and what it is, and then actually read the book, it'll all. So this, the sort of the underlying theme is fear and resilience. Mm-hmm and I think also bringing together multiple circumstances. All at once. I don't think that's, uh, I, I don't think that's as unique as we might think it is. And I think people hearing that someone else is dealing with all of these things at the same time, I think we tend to focus on the one, one of our challenges, but when they're all coming at the same time, um, We we compartmentalize. Right. And right now I'm dealing with a mental health issue right now I'm dealing with, you know, parenting and I can't, I can't address everything else. And I think people will really benefit from your story where you were like all of it at once. Come on, like let's right. Let's yeah, let's do it. Um, and so that, that sounds like a really important part of how you approach this. Absolutely. And I think. So it's all intertwined and it is, you know, one thing helps contribute to another and you don't realize it. And then before, you know, it's just the perfect storm and you don't know how to get out of it. So it does have that level of. Complexity, um, that most people wouldn't think about. And another part of my story is my childhood was great. You know, there was nothing that happened that was traumatic. I had great loving parents and a great family and did well in school. And most of the time people think of addiction as, you know, everything was awful. And so that led to their drinking or that led to their drug use. And so mine's kind of, you know, addiction. Can affect anybody no matter what they've been through. And I don't think people really think of it that way all the time. And I think increasingly we're gonna see a lot more of that. Like, I look at my kids and what they deal with on a regular basis. I mean, we didn't deal with any of this stuff when we were young. Right. And you know, my daughter didn't go to school for three months last year because of the bullying and because of the, the stuff that happened to her and death threats, and like, she wouldn't even leave the house. Right. Who goes through that at 13? I know, and, and now it's like these, these girls, like these, one of these girls found my cell phone number and started texting me threatening stuff. I'm like, you, can you imagine when we were 13 threatening another adult, just, you know, to, just to torment. Their peers. Right? Right. So it, I think that this generation, although they are very aware and they are, they have a lot more information than we did at the same time. I think that the, the impact of what they go through and what these kids are feeling empowered to do is, is much stronger. And they will be facing, um, mental health issues at a greater. A greater capacity. I think. Absolutely. I'm so sorry that all went was going on. That's I can't even imagine that with 13 year old girls texting you, not even, you know, going past your daughter, so that's insane. I'm sorry about that. But it is, that's one of the things that. Causes me fear with my three and a half year olds. I'm like, what are they gonna go through when they're older? What it'll be? What will social media be like in 10 years? You know, how does this keep evolving and how much worse is it going to get or is it going to get better? I don't, nobody knows right now. Well, this is why I think your story is important because resilience is an incredibly important skill that I know my daughter's in great shape. Now. She we've had incredible conversations and she, you know, we're lucky that she's a kid who's incredibly intelligent and, and self-aware, and has taken this whole experience and become very introspective about, you know, how we get through these things and how we see how people behave and why they behave in this way. And so her resilience is what has, you know, put her into a position where she's fine, but I can only imagine that kids who, who haven't sort of matured in that way or have developed that, or don't have the support to develop that. Are gonna spiral. And they're the ones who are going to end up in places that are really difficult and, and they don't, they don't, they're not equipped to deal with them. Right. So I think that your story and what's coming out of your story around resilience and the, the teaching points is gonna be super, super important. Thank you. I hope so. I hope it brings to light a lot of things. Yes. Well, you know, we all need to hear and to hear that we are part of a community in that there are other people going through the same things that we. Right. Absolutely. I have a question that I ask everyone, and this is a little bit of a different context for you. Um, but I would love to hear your opinion on what's the difference between what we sort of see out there in the world and, you know, online, social media, online business, et cetera, et cetera. And what's real. I think that, like, we kind of talked about a little, there's just the people that show everything is perfect. And then there's the business owners saying I went from $700 a month to 70 grand or something, and it's just kind of promoting this perfectionism. That's completely unrealistic for most people. I mean, if you. Make 70 grand out of 700, then that's amazing, but that's not gonna happen for everybody. And I think that we put too much pressure on ourselves to be like other people and to achieve what they're, they've already achieved. And we touched on that a little where I have compared myself to others and you know, it just brings down your. Mindset and makes you feel like you're not worthy or not as good. So I think it's really important to remember number one, everything you see online, isn't real, um, to don't compare yourself cuz you, it's not always apples to apples. You know, everyone else has different. Paths and did things a different way. And number three, just be your authentic self. And, you know, people will love you more for that than for being fake. Yeah. And there are a whole bunch of people in this world and they don't all have to be yours. Right. Exactly. Yeah. That's a good, I like that. And no, there's a, there's a balance between being aspirational and, um, Achievable. And I think that's the whole point of this show is to, I think that there are little like micro aspirations that I think are much more real and, and, um, applicable to the majority of the population out there. And every single person has something to offer in terms of those, those aspirations in terms of those, that problem solving. I think that's what people really want is to be able to see themselves and see something. That they can apply in their own lives or change, shift their thinking, or, you know, there's a, maybe there's a real tactical, you know, problem or solution out there. So, uh, I love that. That's what you, that's what you see in terms of the difference. So, Thank you. Yeah. And I think this, this authenticity movement, I hope, um, has legs. I agree. I think it's, it's getting there, but it's still kind of in the better ways to go. Yeah, for sure. Okay, so we're coming up on time. Can you tell our listeners where they can find you and absolutely. And follow you? Yeah. So I'm on Instagram and Facebook at it's Ellen Elizabeth, and then my website can also show you all of the places I've been. That's www dot it's Ellen elizabeth.com. And if you wanna find out more about my book, just sign up for my, um, mailing. List. And you'll get a little about the book blurb so you can learn more about what it'll be. Amazing. Well, I can't, I mean, I'm for one, wanna read it and I can't wait for that to become available to us. We'll put all the links in the show notes and you'll be able to find, um, Ellen Elizabeth in all of the different places and follow along with her story as she continues to build her business in her own way. So that's a wrap we're at time. I'm so happy. We had the opportunity to chat with Ellen today to hear more about her business or how it's coming to be her experiences along the way in what the future of that business entails. And thanks for tuning into this episode of real people, real business, where we get the real entrepreneurial stories and journeys that you can relate to. The show notes and resources from this episode are available on my website and social media platforms. And thank you again for joining us today. If you have enjoyed today's content, I'd love for you to leave us a review on whatever platform you're on to help us share these genuine stories with an even bigger audience till next time, keep building, keep dreaming and keep being real.