Building An Empire in 100 sq ft


January 2019

Building an Empire in 100 sq ft is a new personal series for 2019. It allows me to share my personal journey with you since I’ve decided to be 100% free of Facebook & Instagram.

Why the title?

Back in 2014, I moved to Chicago from Indianapolis to start my own business. Along the way, I downsized A LOT to reduce overhead expenses as a beginning entrepreneur. Along with selling my car, I moved into a 100 sq ft. studio. It took a while to get used to, longer than I expected.

Physically, I made it my home with pictures of family, books, flowers, my little black desk, etc. The upside to a tiny space was being forced to be VERY intentional about every purchase and item I brought into my home. It gave capsule wardrobe added meaning. The benefit of less personal belongings means less things to take care of, less decisions to make, and I’m able to pack and travel with greater ease.

Mentally, it took longer to adjust to a tiny space. I had to literally shed the old me, old things, and old mindset in order to make way for who I needed to become. This journey was deeper and longer than this paragraph. I will share more of it later, but I’ve shed those layers and am now growing into the next phase.

I know I won’t always live here, but it is an important part of my journey. The journey of building a leadership consulting firm to help entrepreneurs become leaders whose teams love to work for them, business partners respect, and clients refer to friends.

In the future, Little Black Desk Society will build a team in order to expand reach and help more women business owners. However, the most important thing is the culture created from Day 1 and that includes the community and you.

Along the way I’m sharing a recap of what I’m working on, what I enjoy, and favorite resources.

What happened in January?

My Projects

What I’ve been working on this past month to help entrepreneurs improve their operations and strengthen their leadership abilities.

  • Completed the “Edit Your Digital Office” 21-day challenge. I’ve enjoyed sharing my best practices and tips for staying organized on my desktop, smartphone, and cloud. It is an evergreen challenge so you can join us at anytime.
  • Launched the Little Black Desk Society shop with 8 products.
  • Introduced Momentum Calls to allow quick resolutions for specific business challenges.
  • Doing research and outreach for an upcoming podcast on leadership and Women Who Excel.
Sharing my monthly journey in building an empire, leadership consulting firm, from a tiny Chicago studio. My projects, library, playlist, resources, etc.

My Bookshelf

Here is a list of what is on my bookshelf with priority. You can also see my business favorites (HERE) and connect with me on Goodreads (CONNECT).
NOTE: I use affiliate links to share my favorite books.

  • Finishing up Traction. (Reminded to read, thanks to Donna Mondi)
    • “Hire, fire, review, reward, and recognize people based on these core values.”
    • “They should be saying, ‘If you’re looking for that, we probably aren’t the company for you What we excel at are these three things.'”
  • Daily reading The Daily Stoic: 366 Meditations on Wisdom, Perseverance, and the Art of Living
    • “Think of all the interests vying for a share of your wallet or for a second of your attention. Food scientists are engineering products to exploit your taste buds. Silicon Valley engineers are designing applications as addictive as gambling. The media is manufacturing stories to provoke outrage and anger.”
    • “These are just a small slice of the temptations and forces acting on us—distracting us and pulling us away from the things that truly matter.”
  • Third of the way through Leadershift and will finish by the end of the week.
    • People want to be judged by their intentions not by their actions. But results are what make a difference, not good intentions. As results come only when people take responsibility for themselves.
    • Good leadership always challenges people to rise to the occasion, become their best, and achieve more.

My Playlist

I’ve never been a big podcast listener. My learning style doesn’t allow me to listen while working on something else. I like to completely focus on what I’m absorbing thus why I prefer reading to listening. However, these are some podcasts I really enjoyed over the past month.


Sharing my monthly journey in building an empire, leadership consulting firm, from a tiny Chicago studio. My projects, library, playlist, resources, etc.

My Local Spots

Chicago is officially Chiberia with subzero temperatures this week. That doesn’t slow us down though, we just bundle up and are strategic about when and where.

  • Cafe Integral – Loved catching up here over coffee with a friend from Phoenix.
  • Joe & Juice – Love the juices and the decor (black & white) and quiet atmosphere.
  • Maison Marcel – My favorite neighborhood coffee & pastry spot. Plus great service!

My Business Tools

These are tools I’m using and loving for business.

  • Acuity – The easiest tool for scheduling appointments with clients and colleagues. Plus it allows me to accept payments too.
  • Dark Sky – Will I need an umbrella or boots today? It lets me know by 8am.
  • Visme – Upgraded to this design app for digital products. (MY REVIEW)

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