Amy Schmidt and I are kindred spirits. After being on one another’s ‘radar’ for a bit, we finally carved out the time to meet (virtually, of course). Seriously, it was as if we were old friends – instantly. Our visions and missions aligned. That could have made each of us ‘suspect’ of the other; viewing the other as a competitor. It didn’t. Almost immediately we knew that collaboration, joining forces, would make each of us stronger and provide more value to the women we both are impassioned to serve.
Welcome Amy Schmidt to the Kuel Life Community. Amy will be regaling us with her Midlife Musings regularly. You can also find her book in our curated shopping experience. Women empowering women; it’s really that simple.
KUELLIFE: What type of business do you own/run?
AMY: I am the CEO of AKS & Associates and Founder of the Brand, Fearlessly Facing Fifty. I am the author of ‘Cannonball! Fearlessly Facing Midlife and Beyond’, Podcast Host of ‘The Fearlessly Facing Fifty Podcast’, and public speaker.
Just Getting Started:
KUELLIFE: What prompted you, or drove you to become an entrepreneur? When?
“You’re never too old and it’s never too late”
AMY: Such a great question. I have always had an entrepreneurial spirit. At 22, I was ready to set the world on fire as a journalist. My passion has always been sharing stories, writing, and hosting interviews. Well, life happens and 27 years of marriage later, and three ‘big’ kids later it is my time.
I knew there was more of me to give, and there was more for me to do and learn. As I was sitting around with friends having a glass a wine, it seemed as the conversation always went back to the same topics: those commonalities we share at midlife and beyond. So I decided; why not open the dialogue on these very topics, and change the narrative around midlife from crisis to opportunity? I launched the Fearlessly Facing Fifty Podcast in October, 2019. This happened to be five months before I turned 50. If not now, when?
At the same time, I decided to share my story and vulnerabilities in my book that launched in June: ‘Cannonball! Fearlessly Facing Midlife and Beyond’. I always say, that I have haven’t peaked yet…I’m just getting started and that’s just what I’m doing. Putting my fear aside, getting comfortable being uncomfortable, and going for it. And, I am grateful that I look the leap of faith – or as I would say, my cannonball moment. I am inspiring women everywhere, at any age, to challenge themselves in a new and different way. You’re never too old and it’s never too late.
Use It Or Lose It:
KUELLIFE: What’s your biggest struggle?
AMY: My biggest struggle was probably getting tech savvy. If you don’t use it – you lose it. I needed to challenge myself to learn the ins and outs of podcasting. There were many trips to the genius bar (they may or may not have looked the other way when I walked in the door). But, it’s important to keep up with technology – it’s not going anywhere. You don’t want to fall behind. There are more resources at our finger tips than ever before. So my advice to move beyond my struggle was simply – embrace lifetime learning.
KUELLIFE: What is your biggest fear as an entrepreneur? How do you work through it?
“I always say: ”Get Up…Get Dressed…Get Going””
AMY: I supposed my biggest fear was those good old feelings of self-doubt. After I was ready to rock and roll with my first episode of the ‘Fearlessly Facing Fifty Podcast’, I took a deep breath and shared my story. When I was done, I stood up and did a happy dance, and searched my computer for the audio file so I could take a listen back before sending it out to the world. Well….let me emphasize the word ‘searched’. I actually never hit record. There was not an audio file. And you know…I started to think to myself: ‘Okay…what am I thinking? I can’t even record an episode. I’m in over my head.’
But you know what….that fear thing….those feelings of self-doubt…kick them to the curb. Like I always say: ”Get Up…Get Dressed…Get Going”. I just had to do it again…..and keep moving forward. And keep in mind, it doesn’t have to be perfect. There’s no perfect timing. Don’t procrastinate. Just Start. There is so much power in taking that first step.
Make A Splash:
KUELLIFE: How do you measure your success?
AMY: I define success as having the confidence to take a chance, step outside your comfort zone. Cannonball off that high dive and make the biggest splash when everyone is watching. And, my mission is encouraging women to take on midlife and beyond (or any phase) with confidence. To share their experiences and their knowledge with others. Another way I measure success is realizing that the messages I’m sharing, or the experts I interview, are encouraging others to take action in some way. NO matter what their story or their circumstance.
It’s not about getting rich, or 10 ways to lose weight, and make a million dollars. For me, it’s collaborating with others, learning together and linking arms with brave women who are sharing their stories with me. Those stories, and advice inspire me to be my best self, and my heart is overflowing with gratitude because I’m doing something I’ve always wanted to do. Inspire others to be their best.
KUELLIFE: Finally, what advice would you give other women about taking an entrepreneurial path?
AMY: Just Start! My best advice is something I talk about regularly. I challenge each of you to sit back and close your eyes. Reflect back on all of those cannonball moments you have experienced over the years. Create your own highlight reel and allow those experiences and stories to propel you forward. Ask your friends for help when you get stuck. Use your resources and go for it. Don’t wait – because there will never be the perfect time. Get up. Get dressed. Get Going. Make it happen. I’ll be there to climb to the very top of the high dive with you…..and cannonball with confidence. You got this!