How A Howler Monkey Changed My Business

“Erika, are you coming to Costa Rica with me — or what?”

It was the middle of a brutal Midwestern winter, and my husband, Chad, had found a sweet rental in the middle of the jungle, booked the flights and blocked time off work for a romantic month-long work-cation.

He was beyond excited and cruising through every book and website about Costa Rica, making lists of what to pack and booking reservations for the must-do tropical activities.

As for me?

I was stressing out over whether my next online class was going to fill up — or not.

You see I’d only been in business full-time for 3 months when he asked me to go.

I had said YES to the trip, but was scared as hell.

I was hustling like a mofo to keep my budding business afloat. And it seemed totally irresponsible to LEAVE THE COUNTRY FOR A MONTH.

But I knew I HAD to go.

I had promised Chad for years that we’d go on vacation soon… And he’d been soooo patient.

I just had to take the risk that my class would fill up and I’d actually be working in my jungle headquarters…

And NOT crying about my business. 

When I told him my concerns, his face went from HELL YEAH-I’M-GOING-TO COSTA-RICA–FOR-A-MONTH-WITH-MY-FAVORITE-LADY grin…


It’s not a look anyone wants to see.

At that moment, I thought I was being a “smart businesswoman” — turning down the promise of fun & relaxation in order to put my nose to the grindstone.

But in reality, I was doing myself (and my clients) a huge disservice.

I was being fearful, stingy, and stressed out to the max. I was spending way too much time online, and not enough time out in the world.

I was obsessing over minuscule tactics and metrics instead of focusing on the big picture.

THAT was not the woman I wanted to be. And somehow she had snuck up on me.


I made a commitment to change the concept of who I was.

I put on my big-girl panties, bucked up and told myself that I was going to Costa Rica AND somehow, someway it would all work out.

And guess what?

My class filled before I left for my trip AND I even filled the next class in between sun-kissed bike rides and smooches with my man.

I learned two big lessons from that experience:

1. If you’re going to Costa Rica, make time to hug a Howler Monkey.

2. If your business feels crazy, close your laptop, take a step back and ask yourself, “Am I willing to change the concept of who I am?”

Imagine yourself as the new YOU. The “you” who ISN’T stuck by this thing holding you back.

What’s she like? How can you become her today?





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