Hey, Whatever happeneD to That...?
"... Whatever happened with that THING you were doing, last time we spoke?"
Ugh. Here we go.
Bite back sarcastic response about where they can stick their personal questions.
Smile. Channel grace.
Show them that this question doesn’t get under your skin in the SLIGHTEST.
... But when you open your mouth, all that comes out is:
"Oh, yeah, that... You know, it... didn't work out."
... Cue subtle face-fall , followed by politely concerned follow-up question:
“Oh, no! I’m sorry to hear that. You seemed really happy..."
"So... What happened?”
Yes — what happened, indeed?
Maybe your grand plans of going back to school for your MBA...
... Got squashed by a series of rejection letters.
Maybe your “perfect relationship” that was the envy of all of your friends...
... Ended in a breakup you didn’t see coming.
Maybe your dream job, with all that "opportunity for advancement"...
... Got "eliminated" due to “budget constraints.”
Or maybe, that business you built with your own sweat and tears?
The one you tended to like a mother hen to her only chick,
the one you INSISTED to anyone who would listen was going to be
"THE NEXT BIG THING"…?
... Just wasn't?
What do you say WHEN THE STORY YOU TOLD SO CONVINCINGLY BEFORE... IS NO LONGER ONE YOU CAN TELL?
Of course, you’re too smart and self-aware to use the F word — even with yourself.
You know it’s a waste of time, a pity party with a very short guest list, to call what happened:
But the feeling of failure keeps tugging at you — playing tricks with your confidence, your sense of direction, and your sense of self-worth.
Why did it have to happen like THAT?
What did you DO to DESERVE that?
What could you have done DIFFERENTLY?
And sweet Jesus — would everyone just STOP ASKING about it already?
Of course, you know they mean well...
The parents and the grandparents and the friends and the former colleagues and even, on a good day, the recruiters….
But at this point, you’re sick and tired of having to rehash what happened.
Maybe because it feels like a waste of time to dwell on the past...
Maybe because it's high time you move forward already…
But maybe ALSO because…
YOU'RE not even sure what happened?
And how can you get back on track — how can you shed that feeling of failure and figure out what’s next — if you’re still stuck, energetically, back there?
What if that "failure" could Create your next opportunity?
You know this is possible, because you've seen other people do it.
You've watched that successful entrepreneur talk about his failed startup with levity and humor and lessons-learned, and watched everyone in the room thinking:
I want to hire this person.
What gives with that?
I mean, how come they get to be transparent about THEIR failures?
AND more importantly -- how can YOU become that kind of person?
Who can tell THAT kind of story?
Hi, I’m Jessica.
And among other things, I'm a professional storyteller and creative business coach based in the Bay Area -- currently cycling south through the Americas on an international work-from-anywhere adventure.
But years ago, when I was still working full time at a 9-5...
There came a day when I was called into the conference room for a surprise "budget meeting," sat down across from the head of H.R., and informed that my position was being eliminated.
I sat there, unmoving, in a state of mild shock.
Gazing back at these politely concerned people who, just moments ago, had been my colleagues.
Then the shock wore off, replaced by the swift sting of rejection.
I like to think that I held my composure.
I mumbled something, stuffed my severance check in a pocket, and left to clear out my desk.
I went out for the obligatory drink with everyone else who'd gotten the axe.
There, we took turns tearing the organization to shreds for how dysfunctional it was, and no WONDER they could no longer afford us!
But later that night, sitting at a table in a different bar...
My ego burned with the knowledge that they didn't want me anymore.
Then, sometime after the 2nd pint, other thoughts started occurring to me.
One by one, I started to voice them to my boyfriend, who was seated beside me.
"Do you know what this means?" I ventured.
"What?" he said.
"It means I never have to listen to --------- talk at me, or pretend to care, ever again."
"Yes," he announced, clinking my glass.
"... And do you know what else it means?"
He looked at me, waiting.
"It means that I qualify for unemployment, which is kind of hilarious."
He laughed and agreed.
"... Which means that for the next few months at least, I can use my time however I want to."
He nodded. Where was I going with this?
"... And do you know what THAT means?"
"It means I have 6 months to figure out how to build a business."
He looked at me, meaningfully.
We clinked glasses again.
And this is, more or less, precisely what I did.
"I learned more actionable steps from you than I did in 2 years of business coaching and 6 months of a high-end entrepreneurial coaching program. Thank you!"
Janis McKinstry, Holistic Wellness Coach
Now, 3 years later, whenever someone comes to me with a layoff story, or a failed startup story, or a breakup story, or any other kind of "failure" or "rejection" story, the first thing I say?
Now we can get to the more interesting stuff.
Because here is the secret:
Your story is not really about what happened.
Sure, you have to make sense of what happened, and you have to help OTHER people make sense of what happened if you want to have any credibility...
But the far more interesting question?
is what happens next.
And if you don't yet know how to gracefully make the meaning of what happened and bridge it to what happens next...
Or even (especially) if you have no IDEA what might happen next...
Have I got something FUN for you.
STORY NINJA training
how to re-define your worst experience and become an opportunity magnet
This quick-and-dirty audio training will walk you through a simple 3-step process that helps you reframe how you think and talk about that thing that (gulp) failed, so you can:
Shrug off the yoke of "failure" and craft an authentic personal story that positions you well and attracts your next opportunity.
If you're ever been dumped, rejected, fired, laid off, or made to watch your hopes and dreams come crashing down around you...
And THEN had to answer everyone's questions about it?
Then you KNOW how soul-sucking it can be.
I decided to make this for you.
imagine The lightness that awaits...
You can easily talk about the tough times you've had with perspective, levity, and insight...
... in a way that makes them want to refer you to new opportunities.
Imagine being completely free from the confusion and the angst...
Imagine looking forward to...
I've helped dozens of people achieve personal liberation and professional leverage from the burning wreckage of a perceived-failure story,
What you'll get
When you invest in Failure into Fortune, you’ll receive:
A simple, fail-proof, 3-step system for easily fielding questions about that thing that didn't work out
3 audio lessons delivered immediately to your inbox
A refreshing shift in perspective regarding "what happened"
The ability to effortlessly pivot from "what happened" to "what happens next" inside a single story
A handout to help you apply the strategy to your unique situation
"Jessica has her MBA in storytelling, and much more."
Sean Conway, co-Founder & CEO of Pillow Homes
"The investor was so connected and blown away by the idea. He said he rarely hears an idea he believes in, and that the way I framed it was unique and unlike anything he's heard before."
Dasami Moodley, Senior Product Manager
"Jessica is not only a master storyteller, but also an incredible guide and teacher. She helped me construct stories that will be a cornerstone in my business and help my brand stand out. I cannot recommend Jessica enough. She is badass, brilliant, honest, and the person you want in your corner to construct your story and take your life and business to new heights!"
Danielle Leslie, Founder of Culture ADD Labs
This it the same stuff that
Silicon Valley CEO's, Forbes 30-Under-30's, and Berkeley-Haas MBA's
pay thousands of dollars to access.
And I want to get it in YOUR hands.
RISK-FREE Satisfaction guarantee
I want this training to fast-track your progress out of failure-hood and into fortunate new developments. If you complete the training and don't feel you've gotten huge value from it, I'll give you your money back within 30 days of purchase. Just show me that you did the work, and you'll receive a full refund!
"This feels so much more in line with our deeper mission... thank you for helping me unlock my true story, and all the power that comes with being able to communicate myself and my brand effectively."
Micah Clasper-Torch, Founder of CityBird
What's the alternative?
You could hire a storytelling coach or consultant for $6K... but you won't have the benefit of a community to test and tweak with (and potentially partner with down the road!)
You could attend a live class for $500... but this doesn't include ongoing personalized feedback as you apply what you learn in the real world (and on your schedule!)
You could DIY (do it yourself) for free... but with no blueprint and roadmap, no expert feedback and no accountability for your success, you risk spinning in circles for years.
also, Did i mention?
Register before August 1 and you'll also get:
A live group coaching call with *yours truly* to workshop your story and learn from other examples
Frequently asked questions
Q: I GENUINELY believe I am the reason things failed, and I can't see a way to "talk" my way out of that.
While I have no doubt that you know your situation better than anyone -- I must assure you that there is always more than one way to look at "the problem."
Of these, "fault" is never the most interesting, and it's rarely what people want to hear more about. But as long as you get hung up on whose fault it was, you can trust that other people will, too.
Q: What happens after I register?
After registering, you'll immediately receive the link to download your audio training and accompanying worksheet, so you can get started as soon as you want.
Q: When is the live Q&A?
The live Q&A call won't happen until a few weeks after registration closes -- to give you time to practice and hone the technique IRL!
Q: What if I can't make the live Q&A?
Not to worry - the Q&A will be recorded for those who can't make it live.
Q: Will This help me tell better stories, generally?
No -- this is not a comprehensive course on the art of storytelling, but rather an extremely targeted mini-training for people specifically looking to transcend a perceived failure.
If you'd like to get really good at personal contextual storytelling so you can watch it unlock amazing results in your business and life, check out my other course: Own Your Story.
Q: Isn't storytelling a fluffy soft skill? Why would I pay for it?
Oops! You must be in the wrong place. I'm assuming you already have exactly the life you want -- dream job, dream business, dream income, dream clients, dream relationships... Congratulations! If that's not the case, come back after you've tried everything else.
to your one wild and precious life