Liz Worth is an astrologer, tarot reader and author living and working in Toronto. She is an original collaborator with Assembly and we are so happy to have her back in studio November 4th with her workshop, Tarot 101.
1. How did you get started?
My journey into tarot had a false start when I was younger. I was really interested in tarot and the occult as a teenager, but didn't have the patience to learn tarot at the time. Looking back, I probably didn't quite have the life experience, either. I got a deck back then, but expected it to all come together right away and when it didn't, I got discouraged.
I didn't come back to tarot until much later, when I was in my 20s. By then I was very career focused, but was missing something. I had put aside my occult interests in the process. But I needed a spiritual connection to something and needed to focus my energy on something more than work. But I didn't know what. I went to an astrologer for a reading and after learning a lot about myself through my natal chart, I got inspired to get back to my long-forgotten interests in things like tarot and the esoteric. Especially because this astrologer had told me I had the right energies for this kind of thing.
I picked up another tarot deck and it became an entry point back into the spiritual path I'd been seeking. I started to get into astrology, too, and began to learn how to work with both. I didn't set out to read professionally, though, and resisted that path for a long, long time. I took classes, read books, and did a lot of practice readings. Eventually, friends started asking me to read at parties and things, and then friends' of friends would ask me for readings. And then people started to say, "You should charge money for this." And then people would ask, "Do you think you will ever start a business for this?"
But I kept thinking no, because I had another career planned out. But one day I realized I could do this, and that I wanted to, and the more I thought about it, the more right it felt. Years had gone by and I felt very confident as a reader by then, too, which helped. Practice is important.
2. What has surprised you the most about starting a business?
The power of saying no.
When I first got started, I had to say no to myself a lot. I would start to believe that I needed to do all the things, all the time: That I had to be on every social media platform, that I had use every bit of business advice I could find, that I had to take a million business courses and try to market it myself in thirty different ways.
And the reality is, the more focused you are, the better things become. Because you can't do it all anyway, and honestly, you only need to find a few things that stick and stay consistent with them. If Instagram gives you lots of visibility, then great. Stay with Instagram. Don't feel pressured to spread yourself so thin across other platforms, or to jump on the next tech bandwagon just because. Building business takes time and it's best to pay attention to the things that work for you.
And of course, saying no can be extremely important when you are looking at which opportunities to take. At the end of the day, you're going to be putting time and energy into whatever you are working on, so make sure it's the right thing. Don't feel that you have to say yes to everything, especially if it's not going to move your vision forward.
3. What's one trait you think a small business owner needs to be successful?
It's hard to pick just one. I think patience is important, because without it, any vision - business or otherwise - has little chance of becoming a reality.
When I started my business on a full-time basis, I would have whole months go by where I didn't have a single client. That's scary for someone who is running a service-based business model. But I really believed in what I was doing and I gave it time.
I was also consistent in the effort I put into my business, which I think goes in hand with patience. Patience helps you say, "Give it another day," which helps you to show up consistently to work, even when the money has yet to appear.
4. Any advice you would give to a new creative entrepreneur/business owner?
Take your business seriously and treat it as such. Invest the time, the energy, the money, whatever you need, and give it enough time to actually become something.
If you want your business to be full-time, you will eventually have to work on it full-time. It might not happen without you taking the leap first, so be ready to quit your full-time gig (if you have one) to turn your business into a reality.
And know when to stop working at the end of the day. This can be really hard early on because there will be times when you need to be working on your business enough so that you can get all the pieces together. But breaks are important, too. Self-care matters. Don't work yourself sick. Don't deprive yourself of sleep. Don't forget that you are a whole person, mind, body, and soul, and that you will be better for taking the time to rest, relax, and recharge.
5. What is a little known fact about you?
I won a public speaking award in Grade 4 for a speech I gave where I spoke from the point of view of a cat. I wore a cat mask and everything. My mom still has the plaque somewhere.