Ixchel Tiffany Renée is an intuitive shaman, native beekeeper and regenerative entrepreneur. While blazing her own trail as the first to go to college as a single mom, to becoming the first Latina to serve as Vice Mayor of Petaluma and beyond, Ixchel has mentored women to run for office, start their first business and learn strategies to champion their causes.
What motivated and inspired you to start your own business?
Both my parents were entrepreneurs with a deep work ethic. Having an allowance wasn’t a thing. They expected me to earn money as an adolescent. So I began supporting my after-school activities through odd jobs like house cleaning, answering phones and gardening. When I left home at 16, my first business was making beaded jewelry. If only Etsy had been around back then!
As a mystic, I enjoy work that allows me to contemplate about the mysteries of life or just get into Flow. I’ve always been deeply immersive in my work. Having the freedom and space of my own business has allowed me to volunteer, run for office, and now, live as a digital nomad.
Tell us about your business.
I work with leaders and visionaries, lightworkers and activists in sacred Sister Circle masterminds. I know what it feels like to sail too close the sun without the right tools for the charge.
Working with you before you burn out while reflecting back to you the earthbound supernova that you are, I will help you dust off your shine with self-care, spirit-care and a mid-flight refuel so you can be more effective, heart-centered and impactful as you make history, to show up brighter and more brilliant than ever.
You are the leader of your journey, you walk your own path in beauty. It all begins with how you want to feel.
Are you currently running any promos/contests/giveaways that you would like our readers to know about?
A few times a year I invite women change-makers (whether you are a Wonder Woman in politics, business, a creative, or a lightworker) to work with me in retreat and masterminds. Because of the urgent need for our planet, I work in intimate groups that have a track record of doing good work in the world and are ready for further transformation.
- Author of Buzzing Blooms for Bees: How to Grow a Food Forest.
- First Latina to run for US Congress for the Northern California Coastal District.
- Served as Petaluma Vice-Mayor
- Appointed to the public boards of Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District, Association of Bay Area Governments (serving 11 million people in the San Francisco Bay area), and Sonoma County Transportation Authority.
- Oversaw $230 million budget and $841.7 million in public assets for Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District in addition to overseeing the $40 million budget of Petaluma.
- MA from California Institute of Integral Studies with a focus in Integral Ecology.
- BA in Women’s Studies from Mills College.
- AA in Journalism from Santa Rosa Junior College.
- Award for Excellence in Community Service from The Society of Professional Journalist.
- Permaculture Design Certificate taught by the late Toby Hemenway and Daily Acts.
- 2007 Fellow of the Leadership Institute for Just and Resilient Communities
- Certified WildFit Coach.
- Desire Map and Fire Starter Sessions Facilitator from Danielle LaPorte.
Where is your business based?
Ixchel Rainbow Living Mayan Bee Sanctuary is a melipona apiary project in Matagalpa Nicaragua. Our mission is to provide economic development for women and ecological preservation through ethical native beekeeping.
My Retreats and Masterminds help fund our programs. With practical, bite-sized solutions and inspiration to growing bee habitat and a thriving food forest, we can all help save the bees and reverse climate chaos in our daily lives.
Formerly located in Petaluma, California at 8th & B Streets, I moved with my husband to Matagalpa, Nicaragua (the second poorest country in the Western Hemisphere) in February of 2017 to explore a more simple way of life, growing a food forest while giving back to the community in the tropical highland climate.
What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?
Having mentored women to run for public appointments and office (especially women of color) for the last 25 years, I pivoted to life coaching and shamanic healing after retiring from public life. My focus this last year has been on a personal reinvention through my coaching certifications as well as being mentored by a few of the top coaches I could find that had openings.
I’ve also spent a year in sabbatical, renewing and enriching my spiritual and ecological practices to develop a curriculum for my clients. My second book is writings on themes of resilience and joy, as I explore ecological collapse and the revolutions of Central America that are bringing about an ending to colonialism in the Americas.
What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?
I focused on building a large Instagram following over the last year (now at over 13K) because the platform lends itself well to beautiful photography to inspire my sister tribe. That has led to earned media and word of mouth marketing. Coming from a former political life with roots in media, I know how much value there is in earned media to get your message out to the masses.
Since where I live is currently in political upheaval, I wanted to leverage the earned media to spotlight the culture and environment of Nicaragua because there is so much good work that goes unseen in the world. I love to champion others.
What have been your biggest challenges so far?
Living in Central America and not having traditional in-person opportunities to network is probably the toughest challenge I have so far. This is why earned media becomes even more important for digitally-based businesses like mine.
Being a digital nomad has great perks, but the views and adventures seem to come with a time cost and the risks of poor internet connections. I’m learning how to crack that code of increased presence without having to put in tons of additional hours online establishing relationships.
How did you overcome these challenges?
Because my networking opportunities are digitally based, I’ve established deep relationships with interesting people in courses, masterminds and online groups through transformational learning platforms like Mindvalley, Marie Forleo B-School, The Shift Network, and Kate Northrup’s Origin Collective.
How do you keep motivated through difficult times?
Actually, I don’t rely on motivation because it can be so fleeting. Instead I let my soul’s purpose pull me forward with desire being the energy source. If I’m not being pulled forward then I know I need a course correction. Oh, and stay in gratitude. Always gratitude.
How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?
Competition isn’t part of my vocabulary. Staying connected with my truth and gifts are what make me unique and what draws my clients to the work we will do together. So many people need help in the world, we all have our stories and wisdom to share. It’s just a matter of connecting with those that resonate with your story.
What is the best advice you have received recently?
After expressing some form of resistance, loving into the resistance with an “evolving out loud” statement like, “And I love that!”. I am loving the the wisdom of Kyle Cease.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?
Ensure the business you give your Soul to is one that pulls you forward with Love, that inspires you and aligns with your Soul’s purpose. Entrepreneurship can be lonely and challenging. The task list is usually longer than the day. So put yourself first. Have a daily ritual that is non-negotiable and covers all your basic needs, including a reflective practice.
It doesn’t need to be 3 hours, but if you commit to this along with a regular practice of staying connected to nature and other humans, life visioning, being in Flow and regularly detoxing from whatever doesn’t support your purpose, you’re going to see huge transformations in all areas of your life. When one area is doing better than others, stay in gratitude and apply what’s working to the areas that need more of your attention.
What are your favorite business tools/resources and why?
I love Instagram. My Tribe of 13K+ is an incredible group of women that love what they are doing and take the time to share it with others. The tools that support me are Canva, WordPress, Typeform, Acuity Scheduler, and Teachable for my courses.
What is a good article or book you have read recently?
Braving the Wildness by Brené Brown has really helped me face my fears and longing to belong. My past stories of being the only [fill in the blank] — feeling on the outside of my family, my community, my career — really held me back.
Brené’s book helped me dissolve those fears and face my reinvention and eventual identity shift. So much shifted in my life this past 18 months in living in Nicaragua that my old identity no longer fit me.
It took changing my name to help see myself as the reinvention I am. And for the first time in my life, even amidst this political chaos and violence, I feel like I belong here, that what I’m doing matters.
What are you currently learning about for your business or looking for help with?
I’ve been diving deep into Transformational Coaching, teaching, facilitating, and shamanic practices. I need help with audience development, finding my tribe. I prefer not having to worry about PR and Marketing, FB ads.
I’ve really been learning how collaborate and hire when I don’t need to know something, instead of learning it and doing it poorly. I’d much rather let someone be in their genius zone, so I can stay in mine.
What are your goals for the next few months and how are you striving to achieve them?
Continue attracting amazing and interesting women to fill my masterminds and retreats. I am floored at the depth of experience and courage these women bring! Complete my second book and find the right publisher to share this baby with the world.
What social media outlets do you use? List them below.
Hashtags #FlowForChangeMakers #RhythmFlowGuatemalaRetreats #RhythmFlowMastermind #eatlikeancestors #growyourgreensmoothie
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