Cathlyn Melvin is a TedX Coach & Copywriter who helps mission-driven experts design and deliver their world-changing messages through TEDx coaching and done-for-you copywriting services. If you’ve ever dreamt of becoming a TE...
Cathlyn Melvin is a TedX Coach & Copywriter who helps mission-driven experts design and deliver their world-changing messages through TEDx coaching and done-for-you copywriting services. If you’ve ever dreamt of becoming a TEDx speaker, Cathlyn provides incredible insights and tips for how to do it, so definitely listen into our conversation.
After getting her degree in theater, Cathlyn worked for over a decade as an actor and director when she launched her first business as a copywriter. After delivering a TEDx talk, she found herself being sought by other aspiring TEDx speakers wanting her to help them do the same. That led her to what she does today in her business, Cat Right Creative, offering both copywriting and TedX coaching.
With little information available on how to not only apply but also get accepted to become a TEDx speaker, Cathlyn is a rare and valuable resource helping business owners successfully land TEDx speaking gigs. She’s been through the process and knows the ins and outs of what makes a good application and what TEDx is looking for.
Looking back, the skills that Cathlyn used as an actor are the same ones she leverages as a copywriter and TEDx coach. Her ability to put herself in someone else’s shoes, take on other people’s voices, and be a conduit for telling other people’s stories are what have helped guide her in her business.
Cathlyn shares that while becoming a TEDx speaker will likely not make you the next Brene Brown, doing so can bring you exposure and build connections that open up new opportunities. That said, she emphasizes that to be successful getting onto the TEDx stage, it’s important to understand and respect the TEDx brand and what their mission is, which is having an idea worth spreading.
If you’ve ever wanted to be featured on the TEDx stage, Cathlyn gives some great insights and tips to help you prepare. If you want personalized coaching, Cathlyn offers not only one-on-one coaching services, but in January of 2023, she’ll also be launching a group coaching program. Tune into this episode for more details!
Find Cathlyn at:
Get your free TEDx planner: https://www.rightcatcreative.com/links/
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Join Amplify, Cathlyn's TEDx coaching program:
Visit Stephanie at: https://stephaniehayes.biz/
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Welcome to the Real People Real Business Show. My name is Stephanie Hayes, and I'm a business strategist who loves to speak with like-minded entrepreneurs to share their real stories and the gritty details of building their businesses. On this show, you won't hear about glamorized entrepreneurship journeys that you can see online. You won't be told how to make six figures in six weeks. Instead, you can expect to hear real, vulnerable and inspiring stories 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 Cathlyn Melvin. Cathlyn is a TEDx coach and copywriter whose insight has been featured by a TEDx, Thrive Global, Fem Preneur online, the writing cooperative, and all these other outlets with a degree in theater performance and over a decade as an actor, director, writer, editor, and educator. Cathlyn draws on her diverse experiences to help mission-driven experts design and deliver their world-changing messages through TEDx Coaching and done for you copywriting services. Welcome to the show, Cathlyn. I'm so excited to have you on here. Can you tell us your story? Yeah, so my story sort of takes me across a lot of lily pads that I've left, and the first of those, looking back, I, for a long time didn't really consider this part of my professional story, but now that I'm doing what I'm doing, I look back and in high school, You wouldn't have found me playing basketball or volleyball. My sport of choice was speech and debate . So I competed as a speaker and debater all the way up to the national level. And when I graduated from high school and went to college for theater, because that was my big thing at the time, I also went back and I coached a speech team. Got my degree in theater. Went and worked for over a decade as an actor and director in Chicago. Opened my first business at that time, and when it came time to leave the theater industry, I took a very quick detour to law school and ended. Coming back to some of the work that I'd been doing in my first business, which was copywriting, writing websites and emails and sales pages. And so that's really when I settled into. My second business, which is right cat creative, where I was doing copywriting services, which I am still offer, as well as the TEDx coaching. Um, that came about sort of organically over the last, um, little over a year. I gave my TEDx talk and had been engaging my business community to get it out there When it came online and people started looking at. Background in saying you've been a speaker, you've been an actor, you've been a director, you're working as a writer and editor. Now you have this sort of suite of skillset that's really relevant to TEDx. And so they started saying, I wanna give a TEDx talk. Would you coach me? And so it was really those nudges from the people who are already in my business community that led me to start offering that service as well. And that's perfect. That's exactly how you wanted to grow, right? Yeah. Because you know there's demand and you know you've got. Some type of the right combination of everything. And I love your story cuz my, my scholarships were all in theater and writing. And so we've got this , we've got this little background, but I never did anything with it. And I, and I, you know, I write and I've been writing, but I love that you went for it and you actually built it as a foundation for your business. Yeah. So now you are about to launch a group program. I am. Yeah. I've been coaching TEDx speakers one-on-one for a while now, and I have a program that I take them through all the way from idea generation where they start out like, this is maybe kind of, sort of what I pretty much wanna talk about. And we distill that idea, refine it down into really powerful idea worth spreading, because that's what TEDx is all about. And then I take them through figuring out what events they want to. They want to apply to and how to apply to those events all the way through getting the talk drafted and then up on its feet and memorized and ready for that final performance. And so I've been doing that as a one-on-one program. And I'm bringing that same structure that, that same method into a group program that, uh, will launch in January and start in February. So I'm super excited about that. And who are you looking for to join the program? Like, who's the ideal client that's gonna just thrive inside your. I work specifically with business owners because TEDx is different for business owners than it is for scientists and philanthropists and, and some of these other, um, types of talks that get given on the TEDx stage because, As business owners, we are, we give our TEDx talks for a lot of different reasons. Maybe it's that we have a book and we want more people to hear our message, that they go by our book, or we want to use TEDx as a foundation to start our speaking career and get into more rooms to share our, our ideas so that people work with us and buy our, our services and our programs. But Ted isn't. A promotional platform. It's not a sell from the stage platform. You don't get up and, and, um, overtly talk about your business. And so in the idea generation stage, in the application stage, in the writing stage, even in the stage where you are getting up on your feet and we're working on intonation and pacing and all of that, in each of those phases of the TEDx experience. Business owners need to know how to craft their talk or their application or their idea so that it's most beneficial to them and their business while still doing what Ted wants you to do and, and really focusing on that idea worth spreading. Because if you don't , you may not get accepted to speak in the first. And if you get on stage and you feel mildly promotional, then when that video gets sent off to the parent organization, Ted and their committee is looking and saying, okay, this one can go online, this one can't. You might fall into that can't category because they feel like it's. It is too promotional. And they really, they're doing that to protect their brand and to protect the idea that TED and TEDx are the organization to look to. When, when you're wanting to educate yourself, when you're wanting to, to sort of innovate the way you're thinking, why do you think the TEDx platform has become so popular? Ooh, I think that, It comes back to that focus on the idea. I think that they have been so careful. Ted started in the eighties, I wanna say in 1984, and at the time they were really focused on technology, entertainment, and design, which is where Ted comes from. They've been really careful through the different iterations of their organization. As you know, it, it, it changed hands in the early two thousands. The gentleman who owns it owns Ted now is, his name is Chris Anderson, and he's been very careful about keeping that focus on the ideas. On those messages that are being shared and making sure that they're supported. So something to consider too, as you are looking at potentially giving a TEDx talk is how am I going to support this idea? What, what science is there behind it? What data is behind it? What other experts. Have ideas that that can come underneath and support my idea because there is, we have so much trust in the TEDx brands and in Ted to give us real clear information, um, that, that that's something that they're really careful about and I think that has really allowed that brand to grow and to become, A, a huge credibility marker. And I think because of that process and the way that they have ensured the quality and the, you know, the, the brand of the talks that you get through a TEDx platform, I imagine that that means, There's almost a, not so much a formula, but it, it, it becomes clear what a te, a TEDx talk needs to be in order to be qualified, right? And so we're not just kind of shooting at nothing. When we create talks, which could be on any platform, we have some very specific criteria, right? Mm-hmm. , there aren't a lot of rules. That you have to follow, which makes it so clear the rules that there are, um, for instance, Even something as simple as, well, Ted, TED talks can't go over 18 minutes. Cool. That's like a yes or a no. It's either over or it's under. Um, and so that's really helpful too, that it's not like there's this laundry list of, of ideas that you need to check off or elements that you need to check off. You really have a ton of freedom as long as you stay within the, that handful of rules that that Ted has put. Yeah. And I think that it's more about understanding the brand, right? Mm-hmm. understanding the brand that, of TEDx mm-hmm. and understanding what's going to kinda light them up and light up the mm-hmm. , the people who love TEDx. Right. Yeah. And I think it's about respecting and honoring that brand too. Yeah. Yeah. That if you come in and, and you really want to use the stage, For ultimately your own purpose, then you might not be super successful. So you, you always have to come back to that message and that idea worth spreading that TED and TEDx are all about. And that's why we hire coaches. Yeah. To help us distill that. Cause I know as a business owner, I mean I've got 180,000 ideas in my head and these things that seem really important to me. But you need that third party. who can represent the audience. Mm-hmm. , and who can say, look, okay, how do we turn that idea into something that other people might actually be interested in, and that's relevant to them. And I think that's really the challenge with people who are trying to go it on their own. Yeah. I think all of that is so true. And. One of the things that I wish Ted did a little differently, and I'm not sure if this is purposeful or just something that they haven't put effort into, but there just isn't a lot of clear information out there about how TEDx works, about what the requirements are about how to apply about, you know, X, Y, and Z. And so having someone at your side who has gone through it, And who has seen other people go through it and is able to be that that guide for you, I think can be immensely helpful. So what's common about all of the people who become successful speakers? I think that. Whether you are speaking on a TEDx stage or speaking on, you know, a, a workshop or a webinar that you host virtually or anywhere else, it's about the relationship that you have with the audience. Hmm. Sometimes it can feel when someone is up on stage more like, A lecture more like I'm sitting in the audience of my college classroom and my professor is speaking at me. He is teaching to us. But what you really want is for, for it to feel more like a dialogue, more like a conversation. At least energetically, you may not be literally having a conversation, a spoken conversation with your audience saying, you know, raise your hand if, and people respond, you don't need that. But as long as you keep your focus on the audience and what message the audience is able to receive, I think that that's really what, what creates. An excellent speaking experience and a little bit of experience, I think too. Yes, , yes. You need, so something that I, that I often encourage people to do if they're like, oh man, I really want a TEDx talk, but I've never done any public speaking is create your own space. Go live on Facebook. Host a workshop. Like those are, those are ways that you can get used to having an audience, maybe not an audience that you can see if you're doing it virtually, but knowing that there's someone on the other side, and the point is for them to listen to you can help you sort of get your feet wet into that mindset of like, oh yeah, I'm a speaker, I'm a presenter, I have ideas to share, and. I think that the, the trick to that, especially for, for people who are looking forward toward giving a TEDx talk, is not getting stuck there. Not saying like, well, I have to do this for a whole year, or I need a, I need to be a guest on 40 podcasts before I can do the next thing. But with TEDx especially, it can be. Sort of an entry, a gateway into speaking because they are so focused on the message, they're so focused on the idea. They're not looking for quote unquote circuit speakers. People who, you know, go from stage to stage giving the same talk. So if you don't have. You know, an entire resume of speaking experience that's not necessarily going to keep you to bar you from doing your TEDx talk. And so it's a balance. Like, yes, go get, go, get that experience, make that experience for yourself, but also don't get, don't get paralyzed in that, in that part of the process. I think, and you can correct me if I'm wrong, , I think a lot of people get paralyzed by ha not going live and not speaking because they don't have the very Right. Perfect. Talk or topic or what have you. Mm-hmm. and I think in, at least in my experience, doing podcast interviews and, and talking live and just the more, the more I talk, the more I develop my ideas mm-hmm. And so being able to like orate and being able to say them out loud. Even, uh, you and I are in, or we're in a mastermind together, and even just like those weekly, conversations that we have where we talk about our own businesses. Like every time I'm saying something out loud, I'm further formulating an idea. Mm-hmm. . So I think that the exercise even informally is really, really valuable. Yeah, I totally agree. I think that, that, that's true for speaking. I think that's true for writing. Like the more that you let your ideas out of your brain, it's like they multiply, multiply, um, I just had an image, this is like super dating me, but I just imagined like triples in Star Trek, , like filling up this, this, the, the spaceship. Um, and that's sort of how it works. Like you, you let it out of your brain and your brain then can process it differently than if you were just thinking about it. Whether you're speaking it, whether you're writing it, it helps give you that creativity. And one of the things that I really love about. That in relationship to the work that I do as a TEDx coach is my clients leave ready to give their TEDx talk all finalized and ship shape and ready to go. But they also leave with this like, Background of all of these different ideas that we've maybe discussed putting in the talk, that don't get put in the talk or that came up that were like, oh, that's only tangentially related. So that's, they're, we're not even gonna consider putting it in the talk, but that's great and you should, you know, do a podcast episode on it, or you should write a blog on it, or that should go in your book that you're writing. And so, yeah, creativity builds on itself. Ideas build on the. And that's super cool. Here's the other suspicion I have, and again, you can correct me if I'm wrong, I have lots of suspicions that what really like hits for your talk may not be super directly on the nose related to the work that you do. So I have a, a, a good friend Terry, and she, um, her TEDx. Like rose to fame and, and like, had millions of views and all this sort of thing. She's ended up writing a book on the same topic, but it's not related to like, she's a, she's a writer and she's a mm-hmm. also a, you know, she, she does speaking stuff and what have you, but she's, she's a writer and her topic wasn't, you know, directly related to writing. but it's, you know, it's, it's worked really well on building her personal brand. And, um, I know another one of her friends and someone else that I know, she, she gave a TEDx talk that was also totally unrelated, but she, you know, she, it was, it's one of the most beautiful TEDx talks I think I've ever, ever heard. But it wasn't directly related to her work, but it certainly opened up huge opportunities for. And I had a really similar experience because when I went to give my headache talk, it wasn't through a business lens. I wasn't trying to achieve these, these business goals that I think are really valid. Um, And that I will someday give another TEDx talk in order, in order to, to further expand. But my TEDx talk is, is completely unrelated to my business and the work that I do, but just having it out there and being able to. First of all, show people that logo say, yes, TEDx chose me. I got to go give a talk on, on, um, on that kind of stage. But also having people. Find my video and hearing me talk about who I am and, and experiencing me in that sort of like 3D full form. It's a connection, isn't it? Yeah. Yeah. It's been super duper helpful and has opened up. Opened up doors to doing things like this, to getting on podcasts or to writing for a publication or, you know, it, it all snowballs. And I think that sometimes people think about TEDx as like, well, Brene Brown gave a TEDx talk and now she's super famous and ultimately, Very unlikely to happen. She gave her talk in 2010 and the, the internet is a different place in 2022, and very, very rarely do people go viral. But your TEDx talk still exists as like, The, the very, very tippy, top widest part of your funnel where people are finding you. They're saying, oh, I love her energy, or, wow, that's a great concept, or, I like the way her brain works, and then they're going to find you and following your social media, or getting on your email list or buying your book, or whatever the next part of your funnel is so that you're really attracting this really wide. Range of, of humans into your orbit who, like you said, are feeling connected to you and that's why they keep on looking for you and following you and, and, and absorbing what you have to say. And I think that's why the topic has to be something you are connected to. I know I tried to write a talk for six months and. I was like, oh, it has to be about business. It has to be about entrepreneurship. It has to be like something related to what I do. And I just couldn't, like, I couldn't even start it. I didn't even know what it was gonna be. I couldn't, I couldn't even get started and I went to one of Terry's workshops or, or we, it was a writing retreat we were writing. And that was the project that I wanted to work on in the last day. And I didn't know how to get started. I had no idea. And Sarah, who was the other, um, TEDx talker down there, she said, you know what, just like, honestly blank canvas, just put a whole bunch of posted notes on this big piece of paper about like every weird story or something that comes out in your head and it doesn't have to be related. So I did that and all of a sudden it took me half an hour to write the talk and it just all came out from like, Random, random things that had like stuck out for me from like childhood and from this mm-hmm. from that. And they all just like wove together into this narrative. And it was about being reluctantly feminine. Mm-hmm. , nothing to do with business, but it like mm-hmm. , I talked about business inside of it and, and what have you, but it was just like, that was the thread. And I'm like, where did that come from? And it was, it was like a weird. Like magical process, but it, it's because I took off the lens and because I didn't need it to be anything specific. Yeah. It, it releases that pressure when you open it up and you say, you know what, I'm just gonna, I'm gonna tell a story and see where that goes. Like, there are so many different ways that you can, You can get to what your idea is and sometimes having like really physical or, or visual sort of cues. Yeah, like that, like those, those post-it notes that you put on the wall that can let you out of your brain and into your body. and bring up things that, that you wouldn't have ever thought about if you were just like sitting at your desk and Yeah. Being like, I have to write. Yeah. It was a fascinating exercise and it wasn't an exercise at all. It was just a, a like a, like, it was like your brain just kinda , don't, so let's talk about the other side of your business. So you've also got this, this writing side. and you have, you have developed your business as a copywriter. And first of all, I have to just, you know, get the story around the name of the business so it's Right Cat creative. Cause you has the right cat . I do. So the, the, the real story about the name of my business is I want it to be Blue Cat Creative and the business mentor that I was working with at the time, Told Oliver, our students all the time, like, don't worry about your name. Pick a name. Your name doesn't matter. Just don't let yourself get stuck in that. And so I wanted to be Blue Cat Creative and I was devastated to realize that apparently Blue Cat is a a thing. And there already was a Blue Cat Creative as well as other Blue Cat. Blue cat design and blue cat jewelry. And who has so many blue cats? I dunno. I dunno. Um, but I was like, okay, I'm not gonna let myself get stuck in coming up with a new name. So I just made a list of single syllable adjectives, and picked right . Um, so that's how Wright Cat Creative came out, but cause. My business name is right Cat Creative. People sometimes assume that I am the right cat and that therefore my name is Cat and I don't go by Cat. Oh, that's, that's funny. . I would never thought of that. . I, I didn't realize that people would, so I have tried to be, um, very open about my cat Tucker being the right cat of right cat creative and, and being my, um, being my, my sort of right hand cat. In order in, in the hopes that people will understand that Tucker is a cat and that Right Cat Creative is really inspired by like a house cat. not by me, myself being cat, cuz I'm Kalan and I almost always go by my full name. That's funny. I would never have even put those two together. I just think about your cat, because every time I see you we're on a call and, and your cat's there. And he, and he joins us because he is a very, um, affectionate and an needy sort of creature. Yep. Same with mine. Same with mine. Mine came into my last podcast interview, but I was recording. He's very, very attached and very needy. So how do these two sides of the business kind of work together and compliment each other? So they're. All about messaging, both of those sides. The the copywriting work that I do, the TEDx coaching that I do, it all comes down to business owners who have a message on their heart that they wanna get out into the world, that they want people to understand. Um, so that. People will get the help that they need, whatever that business is. And I work a lot with personal brands, um, usually businesses that, that in turn work with entrepreneurs, um, and usually service-based online businesses. And so having that sort of like, Niche. It, it, it, working with them really allows me to have that full umbrella of messaging, but still have the two different arenas that I, that I serve them through. Yeah. And do you ever have common clients for both? I have not yet. I don't. I don't think that's probably a never, I think that that will probably happen at some point. Um, but at this point, the people who have worked with me as a copywriter, I am their copywriter. And the people who have worked with me as a TEDx coach, I'm their TEDx coach, and they sort of see me in in those, in those very specific ways I think. So I've worked with a pile of copywriters as my clients, and I'm curious what's the, like, what is your focus, what is the most specific part of the work that you do? Do you prefer more of a, the storytelling or do you prefer, you know, conversion copy Or where's your, where's your happiest place? I work in three different areas mainly. So I write websites, I write sales pages, and I write email sequences. And the reason that I like those three kinds of projects is because they are all long form. With little puzzle pieces inside of them. So like a homepage isn't going to be a long form piece of copy, but when you look at the entire website, how does your homepage interact with your about page, interact with your service page, interact with your contact page. And the same thing with a, with a sales page, which. On the surface feels very long form because you're literally scrolling down one page, but every section has its own unique purpose, and so it's like, okay, here are the, here's the information that I need to present, but what order does it work best in? How do we get the story to flow? How do we make sure that our eyes keep scrolling down and not that we give up? , and that's the same thing with email sequences too. So all three of those have these like little mini pieces, every individual email. But when you're working on a launch sequence or you're working on a welcome sequence, how do those all weave together so that we have this full experience from start to finish? So there's a real thread of storytelling through the, the writing work, the, the speaker coaching and mm-hmm. that is, you know, all related to messaging for sure. Are there other pieces of messaging that interest you? Uh, that interest me, yes. I am a very, like, widely interested person, , widely interested. Ok, I like that. Yes. Um, I. I am very, I'm interested in social media, for instance, and I like writing social media content for myself. I don't do a lot of social media writing for my clients unless it's like, oh, you're writing this email sequence for me. I want social media posts that are gonna get pulled from that content or whatever. Then I'll create those sorts of things. But it is something that interests me on my own. I'm very curious about it, and I like to see how different copy works for different people and for different brands. And I, I follow a lot of, of, um, different content so that I can. See it, but again, like I don't professionally write a lot of it, so that's more for my own entertainment So you followed sort of a pretty consistent path, right? Like yes, there's meandering, but. I think you've stayed the course and, and you've been really true to what's passionate for you and what's interesting for you. Maybe a little detour into law school, but , I'm curious now, like what's been sort of the guiding light for you? Like how a lot of people don't do that, right? A lot of people bounce around until they finally figure it out, but what's different for you? It's a really good question, and I think that. What I don't, I don't know that I've ever had to articulate this before, so bear with me as my, as my brain sort of processes it. But the place where I have always felt most comfortable and most, um, connected with other people was when I was working as an actor. and embodying other people when sometimes people are surprised, they learn that I'm an introvert and that I am shy and socially anxious, and they say, well, how were you ever an actor? And it's just very different because when I. And, and maybe you've had the same experience, Stephanie, but when I'm on stage, Cathlyn doesn't exist. Nobody knows about Cathlyn. And so it is a, it's this really like safe and freeing experience of getting to. Live fully where, uh, where I, as Cathlyn, especially earlier in my life, didn't necessarily feel, feel safe or comfortable doing that. Um, and part of that I think comes from being neuro divergent. Um, part of it comes I think from trauma that I experienced early in my life. Um, , but I think that that is sort of, even though like that was at its most powerful, I think when I was working as an actor, I also get to experience some of that as a writer. Mm-hmm. when I'm taking on, because as a copywriter, I'm taking on other people's voices. Like that's literally my job is to write in other people's voices and to understand who they are and where they're coming from and where their clients are coming from. Um, And so it's really through my work as an actor and a director, or through my work as a writer and an editor. Through my work as a TEDx coach, I get to be a conduit for other people's messages, a conduit for other people's story, the conduit for, for other people's passions and, and their existence. And I really love. I love being sort of like the center of the ripples. Like I am not a person who is gonna go make huge waves of impact on my own. I'm, you know, not gonna go invent something or be super innovative. I'm not very much a visionary. Um, um, but I get to make all of this impact because, Because I am that conduit and so I get to do a little thing that turns into a bigger thing that turns into a bigger thing in that message and that those stories and, and those, um, sort of reasons for being ripple out and ripple out and ripple out and touch. I don't know how many people . That's so fascinating. Oh, I love that. I mean, that was really longwinded. Thank you for sticking with me as I like unwound it. . I love it. And, and it's so like, it became so clear to me. You know, that is your core. That's your core skillset is the ability to, to like turn into these people and, and represent them and become this manifestation of the things that they can't say themselves, that they can't articulate themselves. And I think that's so fascinating and it, and what's even more fascinating is your experience being on stage and being an actor. I have the opposite experience that I feel like it, the characters I would represent when I was on stage were just pieces of me and I felt like I never felt like I was someone else. I felt like it was just me standing there being some other part of me being some other piece of me. But it was always, it was easy because it was always natural. You know, I, I was told a long time ago that the best. The best acting. I don't remember how I, the words that he said, but the, the, the best acting is where you can bring the most of yourself into it and like pull, pull on the least like mask. Um, and that makes a lot of sense to me. And I think that. My experience, it wasn't even so much that I, Hmm. I never felt unfamiliar with my characters. And so I think that, that some of that is like the freedom that I had to, to be. Myself, be my own human, um, as no one was seeing me . Totally. I mean, it's it all like it. Whatever works, works, right. . Yeah. Okay, so we're coming up, up on time, but what's, what's the one thing I think that has, um, or that you think has. Really sort of pushed you through in all of these explorations, in all of these experiments inside of your business, what do you wish you knew, you know, 10 years ago that you know now? Hmm. Something that. I have learned now that I didn't know in my first business that I think my business partner and I really, really struggled with is like in, in our first business, we were in arts education company. The performing arts industry and the education industry separately are, are both like notoriously , uh, not, stingy isn't the right word, but like budget conscious . And so we really struggled with that mindset of like, we have to be affordable. and in my current business, I am much more open to the idea that like, while I still wanna be accessible to the people that I want to work with, that that's different from being affordable and that the people who. There are people out there who are going to be the right people to pay me what I need to be comfortable and to live the way that I envision living. Um, and so sort of opening my mind to, to free myself from that limitation of like trying to fit myself financially into. Other people's wallets. , yeah. Um, has been really important. Yeah. Yeah. I absolutely agree with that. Mm-hmm. . And then final question I ask all of my guests, and I know you'll get a kick outta this one. What's the difference between what we hear out there in the business world and the marketing and, and like all of the, all of the, the conversation and what's. I think that the thing that comes to mind when you ask that question is that what we are hearing from the people who are teaching us how to run businesses is always delayed. We, because they did a thing, they learned a lesson from it. They changed how their business worked. Everything went great for them, and now 10 years later, they're teaching that thing when in reality, especially for business owners like me who work in the online space, it's, it's changing so rapidly all the time. But I think that you always have to take those. Those sorts of lessons with a grain of salt and say, does this feel, does this feel like it? Like I should stretch myself and, and try that out. Um, does this feel like it's still accurate to my understanding of how the world works? And I think that that can be a really tricky spot because you don't want to just say, nah, that doesn't feel right, without, um, without some experimentation. But I do think that that it's also easy to get stuck in like, oh, I have this mentor and this mentor says that X, Y, Z is the only way to go, or it's the most powerful way, or it's the fastest way. And sometimes it's just not right for us. Sometimes it's not right for our specific business, and sometimes it's just not accurate anymore for how the world works. and I think when we are first starting out, the presence of someone to give you some type of direction mm-hmm. some type of permission, some type of like, place that guidance you can go is great. Mm-hmm. and, and then you start to develop your own intuition. But I think a lot of people get stuck waiting for people to tell them what to do. Mm-hmm. and I, you know, to your point, It's the, the number one thing most business owners haven't learned how to do is to trust themselves and to reflect on what they've seen and heard and learned. And actually doing interviews like this is a really great way to reflect on your own intuition and your own experiences and, and like being able to articulate what you actually know. And I know a lot of the work I do with my clients is getting them to the place where they do trust themselves and they can actually. Action that is completely customized to what they want. So really, that really resonates with me. Yeah, and I think it's really human too. I think it's more than just business owners. I think that as humans, we struggle to trust ourselves. Yeah. I mean, and don't even get me started. And as women, we've got another double whammy because we've spent so long being told. You know, we have to be quiet and that we should just be nice. Mm-hmm. and, and that's what we're valued for. We're And follow someone else's lead. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Totally. Mm-hmm. . Okay. So we're at time. Um, I wanna thank you so much for taking the time to come and chat with me today. It's always lovely to hear from you and your, and how articulate you are. Can you tell the listeners how they can find. Yeah. So the first place that I want to direct your listeners to is to my website and the page where you can get freebies. So that's at Right cat creative.com, R I G H T. Cat creative.com/links. And so one of the things that you'll find listed there is a TEDx planner that helps sort of take away the guesswork of what do I do next? How much time do I need to put on my calendar for this step or that step to really clarify what. A TEDx process might look for you, look like for you, if that's something that you're interested in. And then if you want to follow me to keep an eye on what I'm doing, especially as I get into launching Amplify, which is my new group program, you can find me on Facebook under my name Cathlyn Melvin, and on Instagram at Right Cat Creative. Amazing. We'll put all the links in the show notes as well, and go and check out Katherine and her freebies. I think I'm gonna pop over and get that TEDx planner myself, . Yay. Thank you so much and we're gonna wrap up, but I'm so happy we had the opportunity to chat with Cathlyn today to hear more about how her business came to be, her experiences along the way and what the future of business entails with her new launch coming up in the new year. and thank you for tuning into this episode of The Real People Real Business Show, where we get the real entrepreneurial stories and journeys that you can relate to the show notes, resources, and links from this episode are available on my website and social media platforms. Thank you again for joining us today, and if you've enjoyed today's content, I would love for you to give us a review on whatever platform you're on to help us share these genuine stories with an even bigger audience. Until next time, keep building. Keep dreaming and keep being real.