It can also be a bit scary. The kinda' fear that makes your armpits sweaty (even if you're wearing a deodorant called Punch Today In The Face) just thinking about the fact that everything falls onto your shoulders. No one else to blame.
You make ONE small change to your sales page copy and all of a sudden your entire website looks like the Facebook algorithm. And you have to hire a coder who can abracadabra the mess. Or worst, spend the next 14 days fixing it yourself. Sound familiar?
It's so easy to get lost on the hamster wheel of busy work - posting on Instagram, blogging, creating videos, sending emails to your list, taking photos, editing photos, learning Facebook ads, hosting webinars, taking a shower... and everything in between. No wonder you miss that magic spark you had when you first started.
First on your Stop List: Put an end to doing E-VE-RY-THING yourself and by yourself.
DIY is an epidemic. RSVP your regrets to playing that 1-player game.
Ask for help. And by that, we don't mean hiring 17 employees who depend on you for salary, health care, paid vacations and retirement funds. We mean being brave enough to seek a shoulder to lean on, to tell your story to someone who deserves to listen, to find your tribe.
Where are these weirdos, these misfits, these outcasts? Where are the artists, makers, innovators, ceiling breakers, game changers, world shifters? The folks that totally get it, who also feel they don't belong. You belong together.
There is no 'hookup' app for girl bosses or creative business fairy that puts you into a mastermind and BOOM... you're having pillow fights filled with money in yachts.
But, fret not. We come with our felt magic wands, superhero capes and adult tutus to the rescue.
Every year, we join forces to offer the women who go through Marie Forleo's B-School program a sisterhood. A safe space to connect with women who are all in, like you. Women with BIG audacious dreams. Women who seek and give feedback. Women who champion each other. Women who rise together.
Every year, these women come together and change each others' lives. And they tell us things like, "I can't imagine this experience without these other women," and "Thank goodness I joined B-School through you. I would've gotten lost if I wasn't in a smaller group like this where I feel supported and understood."
We know we must be doing something right when we hear these stories over and over again from our Operation World Domination boss ladies.
It's not a happy coincidence. We're intentional and strategic in our supernova recruit efforts. We ONLY attract our people to register through us. No Negative Nancys. No Grumpy Grettas. No Darth Vaders. It's our superpower. A skill to always put together a generous, driven group of women who stay close for years.
It's what we're known for and we're mama bear proud of it.
This year we plan to take this trademark off the roof, because the women who #joinOWD or #joinBSCHOOL through us have the opportunity to meet in person. And meeting in person changes things, everything, in the BEST of ways.
That's us. Circa 2012.
April flew to Panama to "work" with Mayi. Mayi turned her supply spare room into a guest nook. We spent two and a half weeks together. And it ended up being one of the greatest experiences of our lives, not to mention our careers.
Some days, we woke up at 5am to learn our lines before recording videos with a professional team (that worked on a James Bond film!) and ended our day eating a gigantic raw veggies, quinoa, lentil bowl or homemade gluten-free pizza.
Other days we went for a private-boat ride and fixed our tan lines.
It was a dream work-cation. And we mastered the art of, "work hard and play hard". It's our mantra.
Since then, we've talked about a sequel. We've also fantasized about opening it up for our people. Not our clients, our "people", because the women we want to work-cation with would not be our customers, they would be family.
To find your girl-pack, you can't sit back anymore and wait for a miracle. You have to jump (with a giant helium balloon of course to cushion your landing). And that's where we come in.
We want to connect the women who read our emails, who comment on our blog posts, who watch our Instagram stories and who are ready to take over the world in their own weird and lovely way.
Part of running a successful creative business is meeting other creatives in person to develop deeper connections. You want the kind of connections where you can email a group of women with an ask (such as 'will you help me promote my upcoming launch by interviewing me on your podcast or emailing your list or posting about it on your blog or hosting a giveaway) and getting 90% of them to say yes. Do you have that right now?
Do you have at least three real business friends who you completely trust? That you can send an Bat signal to when you're struggling with something and they'll hop on a Skype call with you within an hour?
If you don't or you want to tighten some of these relationships and build new ones, we’ve created something just for YOU.
We want to give the women who #joinBSCHOOL with us this year, B-School alums (doesn't matter who they signed up with us) and all our OWD alums (Hey girl, Hey!) the perfect excuse to step away from the keyboards and take a vacay with us (that you've earned!) at a beautiful villa in Austin, Texas.
BTW, we've included affordable payment plans, so everyone who's interested can make it happen!
But before you keep scrolling for more details, close your eyes for a moment and imagine yourself laying on a black and white striped lounge chair by a 50-foot pool with frozen cucumber slices on your eyes while waiting for a chair massage before a workshop on writing copy that sells.
How does that sound?
"My B-School experience would have been very different if I hadn't joined through Mayi and April. The B-School FB group was great, but I found that anytime I wanted help or support during the course, my first stop was the Operation World Domination FB group because it was a smaller, more intimate community, and I feel like I received more thoughtful and supportive advice from the ladies there."
WE KNOW YOU CAN'T POSSIBLY BUY EVERYTHING YOU SEE ON THE INTERNET. BUT! IF YOU'RE PLANNING ON TREATING YO'SELF AND INVEST IN YOUR BUSINESS ACCELERATION THIS YEAR, WE PROMISE YOU, THIS IS IT!
Is this really happening?
Because we've been dreaming about this since our seven years and forever ago. That's a long freaking time to wish for something, but look at us now!
There was a miscarriage, a cookbook, followed by the blessing of a beautiful baby girl with a BIG personality and the Minnie Mouse-like eye lashes to match. There was health issues, medication allergies and ER visits.
The stars aligned. The prayers were heard. Pint size dictator is thriving. Health issues are under control. And we found the peeeeerfect venue. C'mon, have you seen the beautiful photos?
It's a breathtaking Bali-inspired villa decorated by an award-winning designer. Every corner is filled with gorgeous artwork and antiques from around the world. It's a creative entrepreneur's fantasy.
The entire house is Instagram-able. There are two indoor living spaces, a 2-acre private garden, a stunning outdoor common area, a 50-foot pool (anyone else thinking unicorn float?), four full bathrooms, a divine open kitchen and more. It's nearby hiking trails, horse farms, and a farmer's market. And only 14 minutes to downtown Austin and within walking distance to a gourmet grocer, live music cafes, shopping, and a movie theater.
We are hosting an anti-conference. An anti-networking event. This is an intimate retreat for creative bosses from all over the globe to relax, recharge, dream, play, share experiences, collaborate, learn from each other, and conquer the world. Yes! there will be wine too.
We planned this retreat to feel like an indulgent work-cation, not like you're taking a binder full of notes you'll never use in a conference room full of people you don't talk to more than a few minutes each.
It all started with the decision to hand pick a gorgeous house (not a hotel, not a stadium, not an event arena) with multiple, large and open living spaces that could host a group of creatives who wanted to come hang out to celebrate graduating B-School (for the first or seventh time) and continue to better themselves and their businesses in luxury.
If you are ONE OF THE FIRST 40 WOMEN to #joinBSchool through our link or #joinOWD (because you're a B-School alum already), you automatically get access to this two-day retreat. (We will make it very clear once we've reached 40, so you can decide if you want to join anyways and be first on the waiting list).
There is also a unique opportunity to stay with us in the homebase. there are ONLY SEVEN VIP TICKETS so click the VIP Tickets tab in the navigation bar for the details.
+ Two full retreat days split between business-related chats and self-care activities
+ Two creative biz workshops each day
+ Fun spa treatments
+ Hiking n' bonding
+ A creative art project
+ Wine and pizza night Saturday night
+ Pool time
+ Refreshments and light snacks both days
*Everything in this bulleted list will be paid for, including dinner on the second night. None of these things will be an extra expense for you. Happy face emoji!
+ The retreat starts at 10am on Friday, September 27th and ends at 7:30pm on Saturday, September 28th. We will only break for lunch.
+ All drinks and light snacks will be provided both days.
+ You have the option to go out for lunch or bring it and eat it by the pool and/or in the outdoor living spaces if you'd like.
+ Dinner will be provided to everyone on the 28th. Dinner will be provided to VIPs ONLY on the 27th.
+ We'll suggest a couple of hotels for you to stay at close by the hotel if you don't stay at the house with us (but you can stay anywhere you'd like!).
+ If you stay at one of the hotels we suggest, we'll offer some "taxi services" to and from the house by April's husband who has already done this for her for one retreat and is happy to do it again!
+ If you'd like to reduce costs, you can easily find someone to split a hotel room within the OWD Facebook group.
+ You can also do the same thing (share with other ladies at the retreat) if you decide to leave the house for lunch and want to reduce costs of an Uber.
As we get closer to the retreat, we'll help you with all the logistics.
If you're joining B-School for the first time and you want a free pass to our vacation, plus all our cool extra bonuses, you must purchase B-School through our affiliate link. If you accidentally click another link you find in your inbox, social media or someone else’s blog post, you’ll show up as their referral–not ours.
As soon as you purchase B-School through our affiliate link, forward your B-School receipt to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll get you set up for everything within our bonus package.
There is NO ADDITIONAL charge. If you purchase B-School through our link, you will get you access to our entire bonus package, including the retreat.
If you’re already a B-Schooler and you're joining Operation World Domination, you’ll receive an email as soon as you register with everything you need to know to get access to your bonuses.
Operation World Domination is the best fit for creative entrepreneurs.
Artists. Jewelry designers. Website designers. Cupcake makers. Yoga Instructors. Writers. Magicians. Personal Trainers. Illustrators. Coaches. Speakers. People who truly want to make a contribution and generate good money in the process.
It's for the creative who suffers from 'look a squirrel' syndrome and needs help focusing. The woman who has lots of ideas and jumps from project to project, so she still doesn't have a flagship program. Maybe she's been working on it for the past two years. She knows what she's meant to do in this world, but she can't seem to get her butt in the chair to do the work. Access to Sunday Society and Life is Messy Bootcamp will help this creative finally GET. IT. DONE.
Operation World Domination is for the creative who dislikes marketing. Maybe she hates marketing, maybe she just prefers her creative work. Either way, she wants someone to help her get her products or services in front of more of the right people while cutting her blogging/email/social media time in half. She doesn't want the coveted multi-million dollar business, because she doesn't want to run a huge team or work 17 hours a day. She'd be over-the-moon happy if she made $30,000 in her next launch or $150,000 this year. She wants to make enough money to run and grow her business, hire an assistant to do the things she doesn't love, have a comfy savings, go on nice vacations with her family and go on the occasional Anthropologie shopping spree. Whenever someone says, "I'll teach you how to make millions of dollars," she's automatically turned off.
It’s not for everyone.
It's not for the entrepreneur who expects to be taught by someone in a suit or sweater set. Do silly accessories or slippers (that you can't even see in a video call) bother you? If so, this isn't for you.
It’s not for someone who won't download Chrome or Firefox onto her computer to watch a two-hour free webinar that's packed with value and comes with 25 pages of done-for-you notes, because that's "too much work."
It’s not for the person who is looking for shortcuts to billions of dollars. Do you dream of running a team of 36 and working super long hours to earn millions? Then, this isn't for you. There's nothing wrong with money, my friend. We both love it. But, we work best with creatives who are looking to build a smaller online empire. A team of two or three with a website coder on standby for big launches. A dream of making six figures.
It's not for the person who can't imagine sharing someone else's work with their audience, because it might take some of the attention away from them. We're all about abundance at Operation World Domination. The more one succeeds, the more the others succeed.
"Operation World Domination is everything a girl boss might need to take an important project and change her life forever. Believe that it's the perfect group to get together, it's not just business, it's friendship and tons of fun and useful information."
APRIL BOWLES-OLIN is a creative business consultant who helps creatives build the businesses of their dreams around the lives they crave to live.
She’s a writer, watercolor lover, photography dabbler and devoted doggie mama to three sweet lab mixes that love to join Sunday Society dance parties and bark in the middle of live calls to share their opinions.
April has worked with thousands of creatives through her CreativeLive courses, speaking engagements and retreats, her online courses, group coaching and one-on-one consulting.
She’s been featured on many websites and blogs and in magazines including: U.S. News and World Report, Where Women Create, Etsy, The Unmistakable Creative and Design*Sponge.
She currently lives in Blacksburg, VA with her lawyer husband (who moonlights as her videographer and photographer).
MAYI CARLES is a tiny Panamanian artist with a T-Rex heart making a living on the Internet by being herself, owning her weird and sharing all the lessons she’s learned along the way, including the messy middle.
My flagship course Life is Messy Bootcamp has helped 7,000+ save-the-world-in-pajamas types take their brilliant ideas from lightbulb to done, reclaim their neglected bucket lists and turn their multiple curiosities into a healthy money-making business.
Studied Art in Scuola Lorenzo de Medici in Florence, Italy. Received a dual Bachelor degree in Communication Studies + Art Theory and Practice with a minor in Art History from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. Completed a Masters in Art in Visual and Critical Studies from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in Illinois.
She’s been featured on the cover of HOLA Magazine, U.S News, Huffington Post, Artful Blogging and almost all predominant local publications. Has also collaborated with world-renowned brands like Adidas, Kate Spade NY, Polo Ralph Lauren, Roxy and Kielh's.
Currently lives in tropical paradise with the love of her life David and beautiful baby girl Olivia, and works in a lil' nook of a studio filled with children's books, bunting flags, vintage toys and party props.
(By the way, this is Mayi. I sound so busy and important in third person, don’t I?)
"You created a very intimate community so that I truly felt like I was going through the experience with a group of like-minded friends. I also found an amazing accountability partner from the group - we like to say that we are the next Mayi and April! The personal attention to answer ALL of our questions in the weekly meetings made all the difference. It made the material come alive on a whole new level, and helped me figure out how to personally apply it to my art biz."
"It was also great being in a group of women that I could build a relationship with. I’ve always been a small group/individual kind of person, so the idea of trying to mingle with the thousands of B-School 2016 participants was TOTALLY overwhelming. Having our own small group was exactly what I needed to feel invested and included in B-School."
"If you’re considering B-school, you need support to get through B-school, not an extra unrelated course. Mayi and April have created something so fun, but practical and supportive. It’s not an extra thing you don’t need, it’s a thing to help you do the thing you’ve already committed to doing. Some people can do B-school without the smaller community/accountability/support, but that wasn’t the case for me, and OWD was perfect. If you vibe with Mayi and/or April, and want to hang out with them for 8 weeks, AND rocket your business in a way that feels really good for you, B-school and OWD is an incredible combo."
Look, we know you’re on the verge of making a BIG, potentially life-changing investment.
Perhaps, like us seven years back, your heart is racing at 1000mph just by the thought of joining B-School for the first time or Operation World Domination. But it doesn’t matter at what stage of your business you’re at, I know, you’re not ready. No matter how much you desire it, “now” is NOT the perfect time.
We’re not witches. Remember, we were there.
The way we see it is this: When you think about where you are “now” and try to make a decision from that frame of mind, of course there’s no way in hell you can afford anything, so your default response is always: “I’ll pass. Maybe next time, if I work harder or win the lottery. Or a pony.”
Let’s try this one more time.
When you’re thinking about investing in something SO BOLD and AUDACIOUS IT HURTS that will change the way you live, love, work, parent and look at yourself in the mirror, you need to bring forward [insert your nickname here] Fierce (you know, your alter-ego?) or the you of the future, the one you dream of becoming – a more fearless and wiser you that’s traveling back in time to rescue you from yourself, your current stuckness and self-sabotaging trolls.
See what we’re sayin’ sistah?
+ Trust the messy middle.
+ Having a nervous breakdown is part of the process.
+ Get comfortable with the discomfort.
+ Be smarter than your brain chatter and act in spite of being afraid.
+ Do something today that your future self will bear hug you for next year.
"Mayi and April are absolute cheerleaders’ when dealing with learning how to create an online presence. They are happy and extremely talented, each in their own right. If you like design, Mayi will definitely inspire you. And April is great with copy. They have a tight community and are super easy to reach. Mayi was actually the person to inspire me and to show me that having a profitable online business from Panama was completely possible. I don’t know why I was mentally blocked and thought that you could only achieve this lifestyle if living abroad (crazy I know!)."