274: Letting Go of the Perfect Plan with Ellen Marie Bennett | Tanya Dalton
Ellen Marie Bennett quote on The Intentional Advantage, a productivity podcast for women.
October 11, 2022   |   Episode #: 274

274: Letting Go of the Perfect Plan with Ellen Marie Bennett

In This Episode:

Today’s episode will leave you feeling motivated and excited about moving forward… even if you don’t have the perfect plan in place. Ellen Marie Bennett is on the show today sharing her journey and how she uses her purpose as a guide even when she feels unsure about next steps. She shares her inspirational story of how, through the many twists and turns of life, she has grown a multi-million dollar company while starting at a $10 an hour job.

Show Transcript:

The Big Idea

They aren’t bumps in the road… they are the road.

Questions I Answer

  • How do I figure out what to do next?
  • Can I be successful even if I don’t know what I’m doing?
  • How do I achieve a big goal?
  • How can I make better decisions?

Actions to Take

  • If Ellen Marie Bennett’s story inspired you, what parts of it resonated most?
  • When she spoke about moving back home to live with her mom and how that was not a fail… was there something that came to mind that you might have to do to achieve your goal? What can you do to change your mindset that this would signify moving backwards?

Key Moments in the Show

[03:47] How do we make the best plans?

[06:39] Planning is like using a recipe

[12:41] How to make plans flexible, but still have a big vision

[15:33] Why sometimes moving forward looks like moving backwards

[21:53] Why you can’t believe what you see

[25:12] What to do when someone says no to your dream

[37:14] Flipping the Spider-Man quote on its head

Resources and Links

Show Transcript

Extraordinary is a choice. Take that in, soak it up because the hustle, grind, repeat mantra that society’s been touting for decades, it added all wrong. I’m Tanya Dalton. I’m a seven figure entrepreneur, bestselling author, speaker, mom, and rule breaker. I’m here to help you live to your fullest potential. That’s what this podcast is all about.

The Intentional Advantage is doing life on our own terms, defying the status quo, and seeing ourselves outside of the tidy definitions societies make for us, it’s intentionally choosing to step back away from the chaotic rush of your every days and choosing, choosing to see that it’s your world and it’s filled with opportunities. Let’s challenge the bedrock beliefs that so many have wholeheartedly trusted because we were told they were truths.

Let’s have a healthy disregard for the impossible. Let’s choose to be extraordinary. Hello, Hello everyone and welcome to the Intentional Advantage podcast. I’m your host, Tanya Dalton. This is episode 274. We are in the middle of our season on purposeful productivity and our last episode we talked about starting with the end in mind….even if you don’t know what that ending looks like, having that vision really is one of the things that can be a big stumbling block for a lot of people.

We dove into that idea with our last episode and today, I wanna take it a step further because the truth is you don’t have to have it all figured out in order to not just start, but also to succeed. Purposeful productivity isn’t about waiting for the perfect plan having it all beautifully mapped out because you know what? That’s not how life works. Life is messy. Life’s gonna get you off track. That to be honest, is the beauty of life, or sometimes it’s the messiness of life. So I knew that I really wanted to talk about this idea of letting go of the perfect plan. What does that look like?

And if you let go of the perfect plan, is it all gonna fall apart? Which is why I knew I needed the ideal guest to really drive home the point that you don’t have to have it all figured out. I’ve got Ellen Marie Bennett on the show today. Now, if you don’t know Ellen Marie Bennett, she is the founder of Hedley and Bennett, a leading culinary brand, Ellen Marie. She fell in love with cooking while she spent her summers in her native Mexico with her Abu. Through the twists and turns of life and shifting of big dreams, she was led to start Headley and Bennett, which has a big, bold vision of making the best aprons in the world. This evolution led to creative out of the box collaborations with brands like the Grateful Dead Vans made Well Rifle Paper Co, Product (RED), and so many more.

Ellen’s book, Dream First Details Later empowers readers with the tools they need to bring their boldest and best ideas to life. In today’s episode, we’re gonna talk about how Ellen Marie Bennett went from lottery announcer in Mexico to founder of a multimillion dollar brand, how she was able to make decisions even when she didn’t know what she was doing; how starting over isn’t a fail and even we’re gonna talk about how our dreams and our visions sometimes change, and that is a very good thing. Let’s dive in to today’s show.

Tanya Dalton:

 I am so excited to have you on the show today. I thoroughly enjoyed meeting you and hearing your story and reading your story. Your book is called Dream first details later. And I can just imagine my listeners thinking, Oh, I don’t know tiny is all about planning. It’s all about having the plan. But I love how you talk about this idea of that you dream first and then you figure things out because people get caught up. They get tripped up in the details, don’t you think? 

Ellen Marie Bennett:

I definitely always had this innate ability to just decide to do stuff and then figure out everything after I decide and I was like, How do I how do I put that into words so that people can really cannot wrap their heads around if they are not that way. And I felt like dream first details later just kind of really embodied that whole concept of like, leap off the dock and worry about where you’re going to land in the lake on your way down. And most of the time, I’ve landed my falls and it’s been an amazing kind of there’s this chapter I have in the book that’s called Confidence belt and like, you go through life and you go through really tough, challenging moments. But every single time I’ve landed a tough moment, or I said I’m going to do something that I didn’t feel comfortable with. I like stretched my mental muscles and then I was able to do something bigger and crazier next time. And so you just go through life and you’re just like accumulating those little notches. And that’s what it’s all about. That’s what this book is for. It’s to like, get you out of your own way and just get on the damn road. I think when you and I first met I talked about how, you know, a lot of the things that I’ve learned about my journey of growing a business out of my house with $300 into a multimillion dollar company. It was because I got on the road of the job and the work and I didn’t sit there and ponder what it would be like and I didn’t have well I don’t have investors, I can’t do it or I don’t have this. I can’t do that. And I just put one foot in front of the other and just kept figuring out what’s the next step I need to take. And I learned so much more by doing that than thinking about it. So that’s the whole kit and caboodle of this is just do and a lot of times the answers will come because you kind of have to figure that out when the plane has started flying. You know what I mean?

Tanya Dalton: 

It’s so true. You kind of have to figure out how to land the plane when it’s already in the air.

Ellen Marie Bennett

Yeah, but if you’re like hypothesizing on how what speed the plane should fly at, you’re just concerned that damn plane forever and you don’t even know if the plane is going to work. Turn the plane on, get in the gym.

Tanya Dalton: 

Yeah, and if you thought about it too much, you’d be like, Well, I don’t know which landing gear to use. Which buttons do I put you you will overthink it to the point where you will paralyze yourself and you’ll never get on the plane. You won’t get on the road you won’t do the thing because you’re waiting for the perfect plan. And I love how you talk about this because there is no perfect plan. Yeah, there is no perfect plan.

Ellen Marie Bennett

There. Really isn’t and now that I’ve been in business for 10 years, I’ve recognized how a plan is just the starting point. And it is a it’s a sort of like little box you have on like which direction you should go and the idea the recipe if you will. But when you start cooking, you realize like that ingredient didn’t really go well with that one. And this didn’t actually land right. But your plan doesn’t tell you what to do when two ingredients don’t work well. So you have to actually use your own logic and your own rational thinking to figure out stuff that happens along the way and I think business is the same damn thing. You have a plan, but that plan is not what actually happens. It’s just the jumping off point. So plan or no plan, things are gonna go awry. That’s like what you need to know. So, just like begin and start trying.

Tanya Dalton: 

I love how you equate it to a recipe, especially think about your business and I love cooking. So your book is just filled with moments where I’m like, oh my god that chef like fig chefs that I totally adore and look up to. But the idea of a recipe is it’s there as a guide. It’s not going to tell you you don’t have you can follow a recipe step by step by step. But you don’t have to. That’s the beauty of cooking is that you’re if you change things up, and things are going to go awry. An ingredient isn’t gonna be available. Something’s not going to work out. I loved your dedication in the book. You said this book is dedicated to my Abuelita mommy and my tears, the strong Mexican women who raised and taught me to show up, never give up and fight for what’s right. I feel like I see that threaded throughout your entire story. This idea of you show up first of all and you never give up and you’re always fighting or you’re always pushing to get to the next level. I just I love that because I think that just embodies everything that you’ve done.

Ellen Marie Bennett

Well thank you I love that you that you read it. I literally get teary eyed just like hearing it out loud because I mean it from the bottom of my heart and I want every single woman and man that you know, as any contact with me of any kind, including this book to walk away being like, you know what? Fuck it. Let’s go. Let’s do this. And just to try Yeah, and like my mom and her family. You know, they were raised in a tiny little town in the middle of nowhere in Mexico. They were the first generation to go to college. They had to pay for each other to be able to go to school. They had a very tough upbringing, and yet they decided that they could do it and they did. And I look at all of the incredible resources we have in the United States. And I’m just like, Yeah, we don’t have it all figured out. We never will and no one ever will. But let’s think about what we do have. We have access to the internet to education to free courses to the library? Like there’s so much there that’s full of rich knowledge, that there’s no excuse to say I don’t I can’t do that. It’s like are you putting in the time to want to do that. And and that’s where it’s at. And they always showed me that. So that’s why, you know that dedication is also means a lot to me too.

Tanya Dalton: 

Yeah. Well, I think part of it is too, because we’re talking about this idea that you know, a lot of the details will come later but you always had a clear vision of who you are and what you really wanted. And I think that is so paramount. So what I would love for you to do is finish this sentence. I don’t just sell aprons. i What is it you do? We sell confidence. So much bigger than aprons so much bigger

Ellen Marie Bennett

aprons are this you know it’s the vessel but really we’re selling this feeling and by selling even under sells it because what we’re doing is creating and providing and sort of uplifting people to think differently about themselves. And so, people are like, Wait, what are these aprons? Well, kind of like black magic, do these aprons. You got to understand that when I first started this company, you know aprons were cheap like paper said shoe lace strap. They barely covered your boob. They didn’t protect you in any way shape or form and they looked horrible. And they were very old school. Terrible. This is a kitchen apron. Then you’ve got all the people at home that are like well I have an apron but it’s got ruffles. And I bought it probably at like anthropology. No offense on anthropology, right like they’re great, great store, but papers then kind of disposable, not really made with care. So what I wanted to do was make a product that you put on any looked and felt legit and amazing and that it didn’t matter if you were the executive chef or a line cook in the kitchen, that you could put that thing on with pride. And now we have this massive community of people that rock our product in professional kitchens across the entire country and world. And people like Martha Stewart and David Chang in every major TV show on Food Network wears Hedley and Bennett if you’re ever watching our show, and you see a little red patch on the chest that has a little ampersand symbol in it. That’s our logo and that’s our apron. And so you’re putting this apron on, but that apron represents not just you, but hundreds of 1000s of people that also are putting that apron on and symbolizing. This is the beginning of the work ahead.

Tanya Dalton: 

Look and Feel legit. I think that’s so true. It’s like you’re donning your armor, right? You’re like yes, I’m a cook and even if you’re just cooking macaroni for your kids on Thursday night you feel legit. I love this idea that it’s not just aprons its competence. It really is this idea that you are a I love what you call it a proper cook. I feel very British when I say a proper cook but it is it’s all about that feeling and that emotion. And I think that’s the thing. You always had a North Star and you’ve had this vision and you didn’t get caught up in the nitpicky details. You allowed your evolution to happen. So let’s let’s dive into that because your path was never straight. Right? It was never like point A to point B and that was simple. Look at that. It’s it’s a lot more to it. Right. So let’s walk through Share, share some of how your story and how it evolved because I want to talk about all the different things from going to Mexico to your first job, you know and all of that.

Ellen Marie Bennett

Yeah, so when I turned 18, I decided to move to Mexico City and I lived there for almost four years and I had the craziest set of jobs ever while I lived there. And I had to do that because my parents were like you can’t live in Mexico by yourself like what are you talking about? You need to come home and so they thought Well, alright, my mom was like, Well, I not gonna give you any money. So you’ll come home and I did not come on. You did not work. So I had to get my Mexican citizenship. I had to figure out where to live and how to provide for myself and create a whole world in a foreign country. And what it really kind of made me do was put my like feet to the fire and no one was going to save me so I had to save myself. And I sort of told them I can figure it out. So I wasn’t about to back down and say oh no turns out I need like, eject I need to be rescued. I was like, Ah, we’re doing this. And so by getting all these crazy jobs, like I announced a lottery in Mexico. I worked as a simultaneous translator for the Mexican railroad union like I had the funniest weirdest jobs ever. But every single one of those I got myself and I was completely freelance. So if I didn’t make the money that I needed to make that month I wouldn’t pay rent, right? And there’s a real responsibility that comes with that fear or that like nervousness of I’m not going to make rent if I don’t get this job. So I always worked 10 times harder than maybe I even needed to and it allowed me to recognize it like I could forge a path for myself. And it was always uncomfortable. The let me be super clear. There was never a moment when I lived in Mexico that wasn’t uncomfortable. I was always like, oh my god, do I have enough money? Am I gonna be able to do this? It was a it was hard and brutal and like motivating, but motivating and he taught me grit and resilience and all these things that in the moment when you’re going through the really hard stuff. You don’t realize how much resilience you’re building, but you are and it’s like when you’re at the gym and you’re doing the crunches and you don’t feel like I can’t do anymore and then you keep going. It’s the same damn thing and then next thing you know you’re stronger. Your muscles are stronger. You’re to me my mental muscles got stronger. So the best thing I could have ever done, and then when I came back home and was living in the United States, I moved back in with my mother because I was like, I want to be in the food world. This is what I want to do. I had a great life in Mexico, but I let it all go to come home and begin my culinary career in the United States. So Tanya Dalton:, that was like starting from the ground up all over again. And I was so that was a shocker to me.

Tanya Dalton: 

Yeah, well, I think for some people, they’d be like, I’m never going to move back in with my mom. Like that’s moving backwards. And it’s it’s not necessarily it’s sometimes it’s it’s a starting over. It’s a reinvention. It’s a all of those things. Yeah, was a calculated

Ellen Marie Bennett:

decision that made the most sense, because I knew if I lived with my mom, I could save on rent. I knew what it costs to live on my own because I had done it in Mexico for years. So it was a choice I made and you gotta like leave your ego at the door and just say what’s the right thing for today? Maybe what I was doing two years ago, doesn’t fit today anymore and I have to be okay with that. And not just have the ego of like, well I lived on my own for four years. So I can’t ever imagine living with my mother. It’s like, if you don’t have the money to get your business started and you want to be like fancy and go rent to you know, really cool apartment and use all your money to have a really cool apartment. Guess what? You’re not gonna get your damn dream faster.

Tanya Dalton: 

Your business? Yeah. It’s so true. It’s so true. You have to you have to give things up. I love how you said they aren’t bumps in the road. They are the road race. Yeah, I think we fear the bumps but but like, you have this way about you of just embracing the bumps and just saying they’re gonna be there. It’s just allowing them to be there and not stressing you don’t seem to stress about the bumps in the road. It’s like yeah, I had to move with my mom. Not ideal, right could couldn’t be better. However, because of that decision. And I love how you said that was a decision. It was an intentional choice. You chose that in order to pour more into growing the business more into growing your career to start with, right, all of those things. Absolutely. And

Ellen Marie Bennett:

when you put yourself in that mindset of like, okay, it’s my choice. It’s my intentional choice to move in with my mother. You’re more in control. It’s not just like Woe is me. I now have to move in with my mother. I’m a victim of my own situation. It’s like no, you are in charge of your situation. Therefore you are going to do something that’s maybe a little uncomfortable that in the long run is going to benefit you because you now have more resources to get your shit together and go start that business you want to start or go do the culinary career you want so so cut to moving in with my mother which was you know, shell shock back in with my mom who an opinionated Latin lady, so it’s a lot and she was like LME this week of hysterical and I’m just like, oh my god, I can’t believe this is happening. But I did it. I leaned in and I got a job at the one of the best restaurants in LA because I was able to do this with my mother. I was only making $10 an hour at this restaurant but I thought this is the best restaurant. It’s two Michelin stars. It’s worth it. I will pay my dues. Let’s go. And in that job is when I started Hadley and Bennett and Haley and Ben It was literally forged out of the fire of working at this incredible spot with beautiful food, horrible uniforms. And I was like this is it. This is the thing I want to create that competence and you know, we’re off to the races from there but at to your earlier points like it has been anything but a smooth ride. And rarely do I actually talk to a founder that’s like oh yeah, everything was great.

Tanya Dalton: 

So easy. Money.

 

Ellen Marie Bennett:

Things are easy. No supply chain issues. Oh no, it’s perfect. Nobody says that. Let’s be real. The only thing that makes you think that is Forbes and Inc Magazine that hasn’t like plant seeds in your head that you are not as perfect as the as other entrepreneurs that you compare yourself to.

Tanya Dalton: 

I think that is so so true. I want to get more into your story here in just a minute. Let’s take a quick little mid episode break. Okay, so we had the break and then we just come back. I love what you said there about, you know, we look at people in Forbes or we look at the inside story and we feel like Oh, it must have been like an overnight success, which there’s no overnight successes. There must have been the Cinderella story which even Cinderella had to scrub floors for a while. Right? I mean, this is the thing is you are working for $10 an hour so that you could get the experience in a two Michelin star restaurant. And that’s what was the catalyst to get you moving.

Ellen Marie Bennett:

Yeah. And that was uncomfortable because as you think about my life in Mexico, after all the crazy struggle and everything else. I was actually really financially stable happy. Had a house had a whole kind of life that I left because I wanted to go pursue the thing that I knew in my heart of hearts was what I wanted. And the journey is is a windy one, right? Because then you might say like wait, but Elon, you’re not you don’t have a food company now. And you’re damn right I don’t and that’s the crazy thing about getting on the road and doing the work because as I did the work, I realized I love food, but I don’t think I want to be having a restaurant for the rest of my life. Like I don’t know if that’s actually the dream that I had. Therefore I’m going to adjust my dream because of the experience I got along the way. And now I’m going to do this thing that’s like apron, so it’s food adjacent. So having the willingness to adjust when things don’t actually turn out like the recipe right? If it doesn’t taste good why need to add another ingredient. You might need to add honey the recipe doesn’t say add honey. Well, what are you just gonna sit there and let the damn thing taste bad? No at the fucking honey. You know, do something they are shaken make it legit and that’s what I did. I was I was willing to be okay with the fact that my dream wasn’t what I wanted, and that I didn’t actually turn out wanting restaurants and I was going to do something different. And that was hard because I had gone to school in Mexico. I had had this like, beautiful picture of it and then that wasn’t exactly what I wanted. And that was okay.

Tanya Dalton: 

Yeah, sometimes we over romanticize what we think we want and then when it doesn’t match up, we have a choice. We can mourn that that’s not going to happen. Or we can say what about this instead? What if I do this? I love that it’s food adjacent like you love food. I love food. We can talk about food all day if you want. But that it’s I don’t want to run a restaurant. I have no desire to do those things. What else can I do? There’s other opportunities showing itself to you I think is so powerful. There’s a point in the book where you say there’s a point where everybody stops and that’s where the road forks and you have to choose you either get off the road or you take one of the forks and for you it was starting heavily and Bennett right. Really understanding this gap in the market where people are not feeling confidence in what they were wearing in these kitchens whether we’re talking about a home cook or a professional cook, so powerful, but I know for you you got one of the things I think is really interesting about you is and you talk about this a lot in the book is this idea that of being open to feedback, listening to people having conversations and not taking no as a no I want to talk about that because I think so often people allow either the people in their immediate life friends, family who don’t buy it in their dreams. They take that as a sign as they’re not supposed to do it or they can’t do it. Right when you obviously had some nose there but you had nose other places. Let’s talk about this idea of no and what that can really look like

Ellen Marie Bennett:

Yeah, I mean I truly do hear no and I think well no means right now. No Not Not right now. Not no forever. And yeah, what you kind of approach it from that perspective. It helps you because then the doors slammed in your face. It’s kind of just like, cracked closed, they’ll little but it can be done later. Right. And so I think about when I first got that job that Providence this two Michelin star restaurant, they actually let me come in and practice like they call it starting in the world of food. They let me start so do like a one night internship. And I totally thought they would hire me because they gave me this opportunity to come in and do a one night internship. And I was practically like, Alright, where do I sign? And they were like, we’re not even hiring when I went to ask. And I was like, Oops, what do you mean you’re not hiring you just let me come in and work for you here. And they said, Yeah, we’re not hiring right now. And I could have walked away at that moment. But instead I said, No, my fingers in the door. I’m going to like, hang out and drag this out a bit longer and see if I can’t get another opportunity. So I said don’t worry about it. Just like I really want to keep learning. You guys are amazing. Please let me keep coming and I’ll just work for free. I’ll come a couple of days a week.

Tanya Dalton: 

Hold on. I will work for free. You said I crazy. I will

Ellen Marie Bennett

be crazy. Totally crazy, Reg, especially now because everyone’s like your money is your value and don’t give your shit away and all that but you got to understand like, I wasn’t a professional chef. I knew nothing. I had gone to culinary school which is good as peanuts in the world of professional cooking. So to me, they were doing me a favor because they were giving me the experience and then I needed I needed them more than they needed me. Let’s put it that way. So I was willing to do that for free. Because I don’t I didn’t know how else I would get in the door anywhere. I didn’t have like some great resume that I could go get hired anywhere. And so I hung I hung back into the kitchen for a couple more weeks, and I would show up and I do the work and you know every time I didn’t know how to do something I would just clean frantically and be like scrubbing things and sweeping the floor and just making myself indispensable. And they pulled me aside and they said hey, how quickly can you quit your other jobs? We’d like to hire you. But it took two weeks for them to kind of like see me in action have me front and center and reminding them that I existed. And instead of going out and being like alright, we need to go find somebody. Let’s put an ad up and blah, blah, blah. I was right there. I was ready and willing. And that is a perfect example of like don’t take no for an answer. Yeah,

Tanya Dalton: 

well, and I feel like you know, that whole story is just so amazing because it really is the power of not accepting a no at face value to really see the opportunities hidden within there. And I know in your book, you talk about understanding the know, so you can understand the why right? There’s a why buried in there and let’s figure out what it is. And it’s the same when you’re getting feedback. I know for you when you first started, you know creating your aprons and you’re giving them to these chefs and you’re having these amazing opportunities to meet with the chef’s some of them were like yeah, don’t like it, not happy with it. And you didn’t take that as well. I guess I’m a failure. Let me just throw everything away and I’m just gonna go back to calling a lottery numbers in Mexico you chose instead to say okay, tell me more. Let’s talk about this idea of feedback. I think there’s a difference between criticism and feedback. Feedback always comes from a place of love that I want you to do better. In the world we live in some people give you criticism, and some people give you feedback. So we want to pay attention to the feedback because it comes from a place of wanting you to do better how did it help you getting feedback? How did that help you do better?

Ellen Marie Bennett

Well, the feedback was just honest opinion about what wasn’t working in my product. And it was so helpful because it was kind of like a free focus group. People were literally telling me, I don’t like this I need this. I don’t like the way you set this up. That pocket doesn’t work there. If you listen, like really listen, that’s invaluable. You are going to make something that your customer actually needs versus something that you think your customer needs. And what you think and what they think don’t always match up. And so by being willing to kind of like put the ego aside and listen to the what the people were telling me, I was able to perfect our products and make it something that not only stood the test of time in professional kitchens for, you know, eight plus years, but when we moved into the direct to consumer space and more of the home cooks space, our product was so perfected, that we were offering something of immense value to these home cooks that they didn’t have to think about because I had already done all the work with all these chefs that every time someone complained about something I’d fix it and make the product products better. It wasn’t overnight. It was almost a decade in the making. And now you know when these like we’re mainly direct to consumer now which means we sell more to home cooks even then to professional chefs and not because we don’t outfit chefs anymore, but simply it’s just been overtaken by so many people at home cooking and wanting to feel and look legit while they do what they do. Whether you’re a baker or a griller or a potter or a you know a cook at home, and they now have this great gear, but that great gear was by almost a decade of feedback.

Tanya Dalton: 

Yeah, well, I think it’s really hard not to take feedback personally because it’s when you’re creating these aprons, especially the beginning I mean, you’re like boots on the ground, doing all the things to make it happen. It’s really hard not to take that personally when someone says I don’t like this pocket or I don’t know why you did it this way. How did you keep yourself from taking that personally or did you take it personally, but then give yourself time to kind of lean into it? I’m curious.

Ellen Marie Bennett

I made it very collaborative. I’d be like, Oh, tell me more about that. What do you think we could do to make it better? How would you do it better? Oh, you don’t like that? Have you seen one that you like a lot? I mean, I’d love to hear about it. Tell me more? This is great. This is so helpful. Like I really super acknowledge what they were saying I would I would really kind of like take it in and sincerely listen to them, which actually just made most people buy into Headley and Bennett and be wanting to have it grow because I was willing to listen to them. And I wasn’t just dismissing their feedback and saying like, well I have it all. Figured out. So I don’t need you. Instead, I’d want it and it would help me and it would help them because then they felt like they were helping me and it just became a collaboration versus you telling me how should it be I am. 

Tanya Dalton: 

Tell me more is such a powerful phrase. Tell me more about what you want. Tell me more about what you need. Tell me more about what you don’t like, hard to ask for. And yet so powerful. That was a huge catalyst for you. Because then all these chefs were then more than happy to spread your name and to talk to other chefs about you. Right, I think, because you were so collaborative because you didn’t take their nose and just get huffy or irritated or there’s a lot to be said for letting go of ego and letting go of the hubris that we have. This is the best damn apron you’ve ever seen. What are you talking about?

Ellen Marie Bennett:

Right? Yeah, yeah, no, and by the way, a lot of times I would make friends with somebody and maybe they didn’t need that product then I wasn’t offended or upset or if anything, I was just excited that I got a new friend or I got a new relationship that I thought they were doing really cool stuff and it was awesome to be connected to them. And so to me, it was never a transaction. It was a relationship. And you know, sometimes people say like, Oh, I gotta go into network. And this word like network is really funny because I don’t know what the hell it even means. To me. I go to an event and I meet people and the ones that are really interesting. I’m like, You’re a good egg. I like you. I want to be friends with you. It’s not about what can you do for me? It’s like, you’re awesome. Let’s know each other period. And then from there in the future, they’re like, Okay, I need aprons for an event. I’m going to call Ellen because she has the apron company, then it’s I’m actually providing a service that somebody needs versus shoving aprons down people’s throats when they don’t need them. It’s just like, get yourself on people’s radar. And when they need you, they will contact you. You don’t have to be like obnoxious person about it. And that’s always been really helpful because of a community is beautiful and giant and strong. But it’s not fake. It’s real.

Tanya Dalton::

Yeah, I think I think that’s really your superpower is your mindset. Honestly, this whole mindset of it’s not about the transaction. I’m excited. I got a new friend that I think makes everyone want to work with you. And it is it’s a total shifting of a mindset, which I think is incredibly powerful and everything that we needed to hear because it is it is your mindset. It’s understanding there’s going to be bumps, it’s not just understanding there’s going to be bumps, it’s accepting bumps, or they’re they’re just coming your way right? And that people are gonna have feedback for you. I love your story. It’s so powerful and so fun the way you share it. Can you tell people where’s the best place to connect with you to get the book to get the aprons?

Ellen Marie Bennett:

To get the aprons? Yes, definitely. Everyone should go to hedlybennett.com. You can get signed copies of Dream First details later on there, but you can also buy it on Amazon or you know, any local bookstore. You should definitely get the book. If you’re not into reading, you can listen to the Audible. I actually did it, so I did the whole voiceover.

And I really, really can’t say enough about checking out our products because our team has put so much time and care and effort and we’re not a flash in the pan brand like we’ve been around for 10 years, we really do outfit every major chef in the country. So to be able to gift that gift to someone else of like, Hey you, you’ve been saying you love baking and you wanna get into it, here’s this apron that’s your sort of like, you know, shield of armor when you go do the thing. It’s really special and people feel very, very, very important when they put it on and it’s awesome. So if you can give that gift to somebody, it’s pretty, pretty spectacular. So check us out. And then on Instagram, it’s Ellen Marie Bennett and Headley and Bennett and on TikTok we have a highly, highly, highly fantastic TikTok that’s pretty ridiculous and amazing. So go follow us on all those channels. And I’m a big messenger, so like send me a message and I will respond messenger. I don’t even know if that’s a word, but I think I just coined it. 

Tanya Dalton::

It Works!

I have to say I’m always very excited when I’m watching, you know,Food Network and I’m seeing people with the little red amper sand on their apron. I’m like, oh yep, I know, I know that apron. And it makes me happy because I love supporting companies, I love supporting brands, I love supporting women like you who are so authentic and so true and so open with sharing your story. I think it’s so powerful. So thank you so much for coming on the show today. 

Ellen Marie Bennett:

Thank you for having me, Tanya. 

Tanya Dalton:

Okay, so what was your favorite part of the show? I can tell you for me, I love when she starts talking about those bumps in the road. Yeah, that is the road. I feel like that totally sums up why we can’t have the perfect plans,

 

why we don’t need to wait until we have it all figured out. I also loved how in today’s show, Ellen Marie talked about how moving home wasn’t a failure. That maybe sometimes when we’re moving forward it might look like we’re moving backwards. I think that’s a nugget to hold onto honestly, because I think so often we worry about how it looks to everybody else or other people gonna think I’m failing when the truth is it doesn’t matter.

Sometimes moving backwards is part of moving forward and how sometimes having responsibility, like needing to pay your bills and doing those things can actually empower you. I think it’s Jim Quick who talks about he takes that Spider-Man quote. There’s that famous Spider-Man quote where it’s with great power comes great responsibility. He flips it on its head and he says, with great responsibility comes great power.

And I think that is true when you take responsibility for your vision for where you wanna go, that’s incredibly powerful. And I love how Ella Marie Bennett just drove that whole point home to all of us through our own story, which is, well, let’s be honest, it’s an incredible story. This whole concept that the choices that you make, they are what benefit you in the long run.

The choices of today, that’s what’s gonna get you to that future you want. And isn’t that truly just that definition of purposeful productivity to be truly productive means letting go of what others think and doing the work that aligns with you. Oh, so powerful. I knew you guys were gonna really enjoy hearing Ella Marie Bennett’s story. I wanna encourage you to pick up her book and to check out all the show notes over at Tanya dalton.com.

And speaking of heading over to my website, if you are a business owner and you are ready, just like Ella Marie Bennett did, to have a bold vision to really align your all your choices and your decisions so it feels strategic, go get information on my strategic planning circle for 2023. Just go do Tanyadalton.com/ 2023. There is a very limited amount of spots I’m keeping open for this, so Tanyadalton.com/ 2023. Now here’s what I want you to take away from today’s show. I hope you got a lot out of hearing Ellen Marie Bennett talk today. I know I did. She’s an amazing inspiration. I know, I feel so motivated and inspired because the truth is when we let go of the perfect plan, when we choose to not hold back, but to live life to the fullest, that’s when you know you’ve got the Intentional Advantage.

Thanks so much for joining me today. Quick question though, before you go. Do you like prizes? When you leave a rating and review of the Intentional Advantage podcast, you’ll be entered to win my life-changing course, multiplying your time. Simply leave the review and then send me an email at hello Tanyadalton.com with a screenshot. I choose one winner at the end of every month. So go ahead, do it right now. Just a quick comment with what you loved about this episode or the show in general and a rating and send it our way. Not gonna lie by stars is my favorite, but I’d love to hear what you think of the show and if that’s not enough of an incentive for you to win the Multiplying Your Time course,

I have to tell you reviews are the number one thing that supports this podcast and me. It’s the best way to spread the word and get business tips and strategies to all those other women out there who need it. So there you go. Two great reasons for you to go and leave a review right now. So go ahead and do it. Send that screenshot my way because I wanna give you a free course.

And thanks again for listening today.

 

**The Intentional Advantage is a top productivity podcast for women, female leaders and anyone who is ready to lead. This transcript is created by AI, so please excuse any typos, misspellings and grammar mistakes.

 

Tanya Dalton is a female productivity expert, top motivational keynote speaker and author. She speaks to corporate audiences, female ERG associations and organizations for women about time management, habits, goal setting and toxic productivity.

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