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True to Myself

What makes a business sustainable?

One important element is alignment with values.

“As a business owner, it’s so easy to keep moving forward without looking at the business from a bird’s eye perspective,” says Gila Arnold. “Temech helped me clarify where I wanted to focus my energies. 

“And it was always couched in the larger questions of who am I? What are my values? Are my business goals congruent with my values? There was always that larger perspective.

Gila worked as a speech therapist for 17 years, first in the US and then in Israel. Then, she started writing as well.

“I’d always enjoyed writing,” she says. “When we had to pick a hero in eighth grade, I chose Louisa May Alcott.”

She attended the Jerusalem Women’s Writing Seminar (JWWS), which pushed her to write a fiction story. It was published in Mishpacha magazine. She went on to pen numerous features, short stories, and several serials.

Another pivot awaited. “After my youngest was born, I realized it was time for a change. I enrolled in Michal Eisikowitz’s copywriting course, which I completed twice.”

Michal’s course gave Gila copywriting skills and helper her launch her business.

She then joined Temech networking groups to learn how to expand further.

“The group provided focus, support, and positive reinforcement. There was no competition, no driving us towards specific financial goals.

“It was about self-fulfillment, approaching each person holistically.”

She finished the monthly group, then joined a more intensive weekly one.

“My business was growing, and I had a few steady clients. Temech helped me niche. I stopped taking any job that came my way and focused on the work I wanted to be doing.

Gila also appreciated the input from the group. “We learned from each other and sparked ideas in each other.

“There was so much support; someone would share a dilemma, and we’d all offer suggestions and ideas. Because we each had different expertise, we could offer a variety of perspectives.”

Gila reminisces about an enlightening exercise conducted by Leora Gruen, the group leader. Leora brought in a deck of cards, each with a value written on it.

The group members kept switching cards until each woman held the cards containing her top three values.

“I’d been feeling this pressure to do more, earn more,” says Gila. “This exercise and other classes helped me realize I was happy where I was.

“I don’t need a lot materially; what matters most to me are things that can’t be quantified.

“I’d been listening to other people tell me what my goals should be. Temech helped me listen to my voice and build a sustainable business aligned with my values.”

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