Eleven years ago today, I said YES to an opportunity that would forever change my path in life. Eleven years ago today, without knowing anything about network marketing (didn’t even know that term!), I joined ‘one of those pyramid things’. Eleven years ago today, I never imagine what a deep sense of gratitude I would have for the person who gave me the GIFT of USANA over a decade ago, Leanne Jacobs, who was one of my best friends at the time and remains one of my best friends today.
When I said yes to starting a business with USANA, I had little business experience. As a teen, I had run a babysitting business, however as an adult, all I had known since I left university was how to be an employee. At the time, I was training for my 2nd Ironman triathlon and teaching French at a private school overseas. Leanne had asked me if I would try the products first, since I was doing such a high level of training for the Ironman. I was open to it, because I trusted her and she seemed pretty excited about it.
My first product ever was the HealthPak, which is still available today, albeit much improved (an amazingly, the same price!). It made a difference for me in a very short time, I was recovering faster from my workouts, I had more energy than ever before, yet I was sleep few hours (about 8 compared to 10+ before) and waking up feeling more refreshed. When Leanne asked me a few weeks later if I would join her team, all I did was watch a short 10 minute video on USANA’s website (not even on YouTube, this was 2006) and I made the leap. I figured, what’s the worst that can happen? I spend about $1000 on products that I already know I like? And what’s the best that can happen? I can go into business with my best friend and get super healthy. Sounded great to me.
The plan was to return to Canada to study at Queens to become a certified teacher, as I was teaching with a Kinesiology degree, not a teaching degree. Leanne insisted that I attend USANA’s international convention which was a few days after school had started so I had to get special permission to miss classes. I did it and it was at that first convention that my life direction drastically changed. I feel in love with the company, the people on the corporate team, the other team members, the products, the business model and the vision of the founder, Dr. Myron Wentz. When I returned to Queens the following Monday, I immediately dropped out of school. Totally crazy! I had no job, no connections in Canada as I had been gone for two years, no place to live (thankful my parents took me in for a year – then they sold their home so I was on my own) and no real network, since just before I left I had been separated from my husband and was now divorced.
I made it work. I got a few part-time jobs, my friend Pat from my former corporate career gave me a job at her gym, I tutored French, I did what I had to do to make ends meet. It took me about 18 months to create a full-time income in USANA. Since then, there have been many ups and downs in my journey as a network marketing professional. What I want to share most with all of you on this anniversary, besides the story of how I got started, is what I am most grateful for over the past eleven years, thanks to my decision to say YES to something completely unknown and on the fringe of fear all of those years ago.
I am truly grateful for:
- The health of my family. My parents were my first team members and my sister joined us a few months later. A decade later, even though they are not actively growing the business, they have all been taking the products, daily. And now my sister’s family takes the products as well. My parents are in their seventies and are in amazing health. I am confident that their USANA lifestyle is a part of that. As I watch many of my peers who are losing their parents to cancer, diabetes and heart disease, I am grateful every day that they are still here and thriving. And as for my husband? Within a few weeks of meeting me, he started on his very own HealthPak and hasn’t stopped for over 8 years. Our daughter is a USANA baby, from womb to 6, USANA’s products have been a part of her lifestyle.
- The incredible people I have met. From all of the amazing people that work at USANA Canada and the team in the US, I have always felt supported in the most positive ways by the best corporate team in our industry. And of course, all of the amazing team members I have met along the way – whether we are in the same ‘line’ or not, most of my closest friends are also a part of USANA. And most I would have never met had we not been connected by this company.
- Even more so, my personal team members. I have had so many opportunities to watch others rise to greatness and find their purpose while working together in USANA. I am surrounded daily by people who are loving, kind and generous, and who have a positive outlook on life. And I am also grateful for those who decided to leave our tribe, as every person makes an impact in their own way, whether they choose to stay or not. I am grateful for all of the lessons I have learned from working with a diverse group of people every day.
- The opportunity to serve so many customers. What I love about the USANA product line is that there is something for everyone, depending on what your specific health goals and needs are. When I’m able to help a customer to make a lifestyle change thanks to a program I have put together for them, it’s extremely rewarding. My business is filled with amazing, long-term regular customers who have made a commitment to their wellness and well-being and have chosen to use USANA micro or macro nutrients to support their lifestyle.
- The gift of personal development. This is often the undersold part of what we do and in my mind, it’s the most valuable. I was not always someone who lived with gratitude. I did not always have unshakable faith. I struggled with self-worth and confidence. The personal development opportunities that have been presented to me over the past 11 years have allowed me to change and grow as a human being, in ways that I am very proud of. And I’ve seen many of the people I love also benefit from this – for example my BFF Lee-Anne Chase discovered the Klemmer Organization through someone in USANA and attended all of their courses and become a volunteer and group leader for their most senior programs. She impacts a lot of people’s lives because of her own personal commitment to growth.
- Countless travel opportunities. I love to travel. I think that’s pretty obvious to most people especially since I just went on 5 trips in 9 weeks. I have had so many incredible opportunities to travel thank to USANA and other business related opportunities. What I am most grateful for is that most of my trips combine business and pleasure, which allows me a legitimate business write-off plus a chance to have fun! One of the things I am most looking forward to in the next few years is to have a chance to travel on a mission trip with the USANA True Health Foundation. That will be a real dream come true and I’ll probably cry the entire time, but it will be worth it.
- Finding my true passions. USANA is a vehicle that allows us to discover our passions and if we choose to, create a life filled with doing things we love. My vision of a world where everyone wakes up with gratitude came the from the personal growth work I have done. And I have always loved to teach, and with our business model, I have the opportunity to teach and train on a weekly basis, on my own terms. And it’s given me the opportunity to become a writer. My writing is a part of my passion and it’s a complement to my USANA business.
It’s been a gift to be partnered with USANA for eleven years, and what excites me even more is what the next decade will bring. I’ve been a part of helping the company summit $1 billion in yearly sales and I plan to be an even bigger contributor to the next $1 billion. It’s always a great time to join us; and now, more than ever, the timing is truly optimal. I am so incredibly honoured and proud to have chosen USANA Health Sciences as my partner. If any of this resonated with you, I encourage you to visit my mentorship page. I made a short video that highlights some of my favorite moments from the past eleven years – watch with sound and HD if possible!
I’ll leave you with one last thought: no matter where you currently are in your journey, whether things are going great or not, simply choose to Wake Up With Gratitude™ every day.
Tuesday March 7 – We will be live at the Burlington Golf & Country Club for an evening to Discover True Health and Financial Freedom with USANA.
Monday March 27 – I’ll be speaking at MoMondays in Niagara Falls. Details to follow.
Wed March 29 – Our annual 30 Day Whole Body Detox event at the Burlington Golf and Country Club, 6:30 – 9:30 pm. Save the date!
Tues April 18 – I’ll be speaking at a USANA event in Edmonton. Details to follow.
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