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Christian Woman Leadership Podcast
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Christian Woman Leadership Podcast

Author: Esther Littlefield

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It's time for you to embrace your God-given gifts, skills, and passions and lead with confidence. Host Esther Littlefield is a pastor's wife and business owner, and she is joined by co-host Holly Cain. They discuss issues related to leading as a Christian woman, and they also interview other women who share their leadership journeys. Through this podcast, Esther and Holly offer encouragement, tools, and resources to help you live out your unique calling as a leader.
130 Episodes
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Have you ever considered starting a podcast, but you’re not sure if it would be worth it? There are 9 key benefits that I’ve experienced from starting this podcast, and I’m sharing them here. Podcasting can be a powerful way to share a message with the world, but it can also feel overwhelming and scary. However, it has been one of the best decisions I’ve made in my business and leadership. In this episode, I’m sharing with you the 9 benefits I’ve experienced since starting my podcast. This content originally aired on the Christian Woman Business Podcast episode 20, but I thought it would be helpful to share here in case you’re considering starting a show. If you are, be sure to check out my mini-course launching Friday, Nov. 27th: Podcast in a Weekend. This resource will provide you with a step-by-step path to launch a podcast that attracts your ideal listeners and grows your business or ministry! If you’re not interested in starting a podcast or if you just want to consider other ways to share your message, be sure to check out episode 125: How to Start Sharing Your Message. For the full show notes for this episode, go to estherlittlefield.com/episode127   The 9 Benefits I’ve Experienced from Podcasting: Improved Speaking Skills Increased Confidence New Opportunities Business Growth Refined Message Audience Growth Connections with Industry Leaders Relationship Growth with my Co-host Ability to Make a Bigger Impact Links Mentioned: Confident Leader Catalyst Confident Conversations Mini-Course CWBP Episode 17: Should You Start a Blog, Podcast, or YouTube Channel? CWBP Episode 19: 3 Ways to Determine if Podcasting is Right for You
How can you thrive in your work and your personal life when you have a demanding career? And how can you transition from employee to entrepreneurship if you have a dream you want to pursue?   If you work full-time, have your own business, or have a maxed out schedule as a female Christian leader, you know staying healthy and making time for what matters to you can be a challenge. But it doesn’t have to be impossible. In this conversation, Dr. Ronke Dosunmu is sharing with us about how to thrive and stay healthy even when you have a demanding career. As a physician who owned her own private practice for 25 years, she certainly has experience and wisdom to share.   In addition, Dr. Ronke shares with us about how to transition from an employee role into entrepreneurship. She provides tips for determining your first steps as well as identifying who you need around you in order to be successful. We also learn about the habits that Dr. Ronke has used to manage her work and personal life.   No matter your current leadership role or work situation, you’re sure to gain insights and wisdom you can apply from this conversation.   For the full show notes for this episode, go to estherlittlefield.com/episode126. Key Points Discussed: Ronke’s Leadership Journey [3:02] Leadership lessons that Ronke has learned [5:51] Healthy work/life balance [8:15] Articulating your value as a team member How to identify where you want to go  Staying healthy when work/life is demanding Moving from employee to entrepreneurship [17:00] Is entrepreneurship for everyone? What are the first steps toward entrepreneurship? Who do you need around you to be successful? Business coach or mentor Personal board of directors Tips to maintain work/life balance when you’re an entrepreneur Habits to be successful in business How faith has impacted Ronke’s journey [36:00] Leaders are Learners [37:30]   Resources & Links: Podcast episodes about confidence Connect with Ronke: Email: info@mavenceo.com Website          Facebook Instagram Connect with Esther and Holly: Esther’s other podcast, The Christian Woman Business Podcast Esther’s Website Holly’s Website Instagram Facebook Group Facebook Page   This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode126 on Nov. 17, 2020.
Most leaders have some kind of message they want to share with the world…. Something God had put on your heart, taught you, or just something you have learned and want to pass on.   The problem is, many of us don’t know where to start when it comes to sharing a message. We often are waiting to be asked, but the reality is many people won’t know you have a message to share until you start sharing it.   As Christian women leaders, we all have a duty to share the message of the gospel in all that we do. We can do this in the small, everyday choices we make. We can do this in the way that we treat someone at the grocery store, the way we speak to our co-workers, and the times we sit down and share directly from God’s word.   But sometimes God gives us a specific message based on our life experiences, our study of His word, or the needs we see around us.   In this episode, I want to chat with you about the ways you can begin sharing your message, as well as what to do if you don’t know what your message is AND what to do if you’re hesitant to share a message because it’s similar to other people’s messages.   For the full show notes for this episode, visit estherlittlefield.com/episode125. Key Points Discussed: How to Begin Sharing Your Message One-on-one Small group settings Through writing Through speaking What if you don’t know what your message is? What if someone else is already saying what you want to say? Resources & Links: Christian Woman Business Podcast Podcast Launch Resource - Coming Soon Episode 124 with Misty Phillip Episode 77: How to Use Social Media to Effectively Communicate as a Christian Leader Episode 23: Using Your Voice and Telling Your Story as a Leader with Abbey Jo Bailey Bonus Episode: Owning Your Voice as a Leader and Sharing Your Message Through Writing with Emily P. Freeman Episode 47 with Merritt Onsa Episode 41 with Christa Hutchins Episode 6: The Importance of Leading with Confidence Episode 67: The 5 Reasons Confidence Makes You a More Effective Leader   Connect with Esther and Holly: Esther’s Website Holly’s Website Instagram Facebook Group Facebook Page This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode125.
How do you trust God during devastating losses and seasons of challenge and uncertainty? And how do you uncover and begin using the experiences and gifts God has given you?   Almost no one’s leadership journey is a straight and easy path, and Misty Phillip’s experience is no exception. In this episode, Misty shares some of the challenges she faced when trusting God to transition from working a comfortable corporate job to staying home to homeschool her children. In addition, she tells us how God led her into speaking and podcasting and eventually founding the first Christian podcast conference. If you’ve ever had a dream or idea to potentially speak or start a podcast, you’re sure to find encouragement in this episode.   Through our conversation, you’ll hear how Misty had to trust God through these different seasons of leadership. And you’ll learn how she started to uncover and use the gifts God had placed in her. Misty shares insights on why we need to surround ourselves with people we admire and how to find others you can trust.   For the full show notes for this episode, go to estherlittlefield.com/episode124. Key Points Discussed: Misty’s life and leadership journey [3:36] Challenges Misty has faced [6:50] How Misty transitioned into a new phase of leadership [9:00] Leadership lessons [12:30] Misty’s podcasting journey [14:13] The journey of starting the Spark Christian Podcast Conference [20:30] Misty’s business experience [27:00] Advice for potential or new podcasters [32:10] How Misty has learned to understand her gifts [35:00] Encouragement for a new leader [39:40] Leaders are learners [41:29] How to find your safe people [45:00]   Resources & Links: Episode 93: Five Obstacles to Pursuing Your Purpose She Speaks Conference Misty’s Bible Study: The Struggle is Real But So Is God Dream Big by Bob Goff Episode 120: Vulnerability in Leadership Episode 122: Flipping the Leadership Script by Serving Spark Now Summit happening Nov. 6, 2020 - use code ESTHERNOW20 for a discount on your ticket! Christian Woman Business Podcast - episodes about podcasting (episodes 17-20) Podcast Launch Resource Wait List Connect with Misty: Website Facebook Instagram   Connect with Esther and Holly: Esther’s other podcast, The Christian Woman Business Podcast Esther’s Website Holly’s Website Instagram Facebook Group Facebook Page This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode124 on Nov. 3, 2020.
Have you ever found yourself trapped in an unhealthy pattern or addiction, but you’re not sure how to break free? The answer often involves breaking free from lies and replacing those lies with the truth of God. In this episode, Holly and I speak with our guest Britney Thompson who vulnerably shares her story of breaking free from an eating disorder. We dive into her leadership journey, the steps she took to get free, and practical ways we can get rid of the lies that may be holding us back. You’ll hear why we need to bring our struggles into the light and one of the most important things Britney believes we need to do in our healing.  Key Points Discussed: Britney’s life and leadership [3:30] How Britney found freedom from an eating disorder [6:40] How this journey has transformed her leadership [14:00] The lies that kept Britney stuck [16:40] 4 step process to discern truth from lies [20:00] See your thoughts Say your thoughts Speak truth Set your mind Less obvious comforts or addictions we struggle with [27:00] Dealing with perfectionism [30:23] Why we need vulnerability and safe people [35:22] Creating a culture of healthy confession [39:45] Leaders are learners [47:57]   Quotes: “My leadership needed to be from a place of total honesty.”  “I’m a better leader because of my willingness to share my brokenness and my hurts.” “One of the biggest lies is the lie of success.” “Choose to believe what God’s truth is over what you believe your truth is.” “As long as we stay hidden, it’s never going to get fixed.” Resources & Links: God-Minded: Living God-Focused in a Me-Focused World by Britney Renae Thompson Jesus Over Everything by Lisa Whittle Audacious by Beth Moore The Daily Grace Co.   Connect with Britney: Website Facebook Instagram Special offer from Britney: Sign-Up for my newsletter between now and the end of November 2020, and be entered to win a free signed copy of my book, "God-Minded: Living God-Focused in a Me-Focused World."  To be entered to win visit www.britneythompson.com and enter your information.  Winner will be notified via email.   Britney Renae Thompson is a dynamic speaker, author and Christian life-coach who shares lessons learned while overcoming her 15-year eating disorder. She helps Christian women move past every type of fear, doubt, and insecurity to live out God's freedom and purpose for their lives. Connect with Esther and Holly: Esther’s other podcast, The Christian Woman Business Podcast Esther’s Website Holly’s Website Instagram Facebook Group Facebook Page   This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode123 on Oct. 27, 2020.
What does it look like to be an effective leader? As Christians, we want to follow the example of our leader Jesus Christ. So what did his leadership look like, and how can we emulate this?     In this episode, Holly and I continue our leadership trait series as we dive into an aspect of leadership that is firmly grounded in our faith. While some of the traits we discuss are widely accepted by the world, this one originates from our ultimate leader.   Jesus, the most impactful leader of all time, flipped the script by demonstrating servant leadership. He did things differently than what people were expecting, and his life and leadership changed the world forever.    We’ll look at 2 specific ways that Jesus demonstrated servant leadership as well as discuss some practical ways that we can develop an attitude of service in our lives.   Note: this conversation is derived in part from Holly’s reading of the book “Spiritual Leadership: Principles of Excellence For Every Believer” by J. Oswald Sanders.   For the full show notes for this episode, go to estherlittlefield.com/episode122. Key Points Discussed: Flipping the Script on Leadership Servant Leadership is Marked by Self-Sacrifice Servant Leadership is Fueled by Love How can we develop an attitude of servant leadership?   Resources & Links: “Spiritual Leadership: Principles of Excellence For Every Believer” by J. Oswald Sanders* Episode 117: Discerning the Voice of God and Making Spirit-Led Decisions Episode 120: Vulnerability in Leadership Connect with Esther and Holly: Esther’s other podcast, The Christian Woman Business Podcast Esther’s Website Holly’s Website Instagram Facebook Group Facebook Page   *Affiliate link. This goes to support the costs of running the podcast. Thanks for your support!   This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode122 on Oct. 20, 2020.
The difference between who we say we are and how we actually live impacts not just us personally, but also everyone we lead. But how can we learn to identify this gap and begin shrinking it?    In this episode, Holly and I talk with our guest Terra Mattson, about this issue, which she calls an integrity gap. We dive into what this means, common symptoms of an integrity gap, and how to start closing this gap. In addition, Terra sheds light on why unresolved trauma is common in leaders and what leaders need to do about it. We also discuss with Terra whether we should address integrity gaps when we see them in other people. Finally, we explore why speaking up is so important, even when it’s risky and what it means to become a wholehearted leader.   This is an important conversation for every leader, whether you are just getting started or whether you’ve been in leadership for years. As Terra reminds us in the conversation, this is an ongoing process and none of us are immune to integrity gaps. For the full show notes for this episode, go to estherlittlefield.com/episode121. Key Points Discussed: Terra’s life and leadership [4:38] Terra’s leadership journey [6:40] Why integrity matters for leaders [10:00] Integrity gaps [15:10] Most common symptoms of integrity gaps [21:00] Unresolved trauma [28:00] How to begin shrinking an integrity gap [32:00] Why is it hard for leaders to be honest about their struggles [35:00] Identifying safe relationships and red flags for unhealthy counseling situations [39:00] Being a safe person for others and when to refer out [45:00] When you see an integrity gap in someone else [47:12] Speaking up when it’s risky [53:58] Becoming wholehearted leaders [1:01:41] Leaders are learners [1:04:14] Resources & Links: Episode 120: Vulnerability in Leadership - Why It Matters, What it Looks Like, and How to Practice It Core Values Index Connect with Terra Mattson Living Wholehearted Website Terra’s Website Free Audiobook before Oct. 31, 2020 with purchase of “Shrinking the Integrity Gap” book Terra on Instagram Connect with Esther and Holly: Esther’s other podcast, The Christian Woman Business Podcast Esther’s Website Holly’s Website Instagram Facebook Group Facebook Page   This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode121 on Oct. 13, 2020.
Vulnerability isn’t just a “nice to have” trait for leaders; it is essential to being an effective Christian leader. But why does it matter and how can we practice it in our everyday lives?   In this episode, Holly and I are kicking off a new series about traits we need to develop as Christian leaders. We originally shared a list of things we felt leaders needed back in episode 2 of the podcast, but now we’re going to do a deeper dive into some specific character traits for leaders.   Today we’re starting with the trait of vulnerability. We believe vulnerability will help you be a more effective leader, so we’re sharing 4 reasons why it matters, as well as what it looks like and how to practice it as a Christian woman.   For the full show notes for this episode, go to estherlittlefield.com/episode120. Key Points Discussed: What is Vulnerability? Why is Vulnerability Important for Christian Leaders? What Vulnerability Looks Like How to Practice Vulnerability as a Christian Woman Action Step   Resources & Links: Dare to Lead by Brene Brown The Goodness of Vulnerability - article from Intervarsity The Part Of Vulnerability No One Talks About - article from Relevant Connect with Esther and Holly: Esther’s other podcast, The Christian Woman Business Podcast Esther’s Website Holly’s Website Instagram Facebook Group Facebook Page   This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode120 on Oct. 6, 2020.
Are you a parent, grandparent, mentor, or leader of teens? Or do you want to gain leadership insights from parenting teenagers?  In this conversation, Holly and I talk with Connie Albers about thriving while leading and parenting teens. She shares many insights from her experience raising 5 teenagers as well as other lessons she has learned on her leadership journey. Connie shares wisdom and insight on how to keep the heart of your teen, what’s more important than fixing their problems, and how to repair and rebuild a relationship that has been broken. Even if you are not currently parenting teens, this episode is packed full of valuable lessons that every Christian leader can benefit from. Key Points about Leading and Parenting Teens: Connie’s life & leadership [3:27] What led Connie to write her book about parenting teens [12:00] Keeping the heart of your teen [16:42] Listening to teens rather than fixing their problems [28:47] What to do when your teen shares something difficult or surprising [38:00] Repairing and rebuilding relationship with your child [47:40] Leaders are learners [56:00] Connect with Connie   Key Quotes about Leading and Parenting Teens: “In leadership, you have to be a great listener and you have to be perceptive.” “You don’t have to survive the teen years; they can be the most profound years of your parenting.” “Families are destroyed at the hand of unbending rules.” “When we want to keep the heart of our child we first have to maintain the relationship.” “Control is an elusive feeling.” “Surrendering has to do with letting go and trusting that what you have taught them is in their mind and in their thoughts.” “Our children aren’t problems to be fixed. They want a relationship.” “Two things your teens need: they need to be heard and affirmed.” “Tell your kids: I am a safe person. I am not going to judge you. I am not going to think poorly of you. I will be your greatest cheerleader. And then live it out.” “We can teach our children everything about God but we can’t force a relationship with God.” “God is not finished with your child’s story and he is not finished with your family’s legacy.” “It’s never too late; it's always too soon to quit.” “It’s not what you say but how you say it.” Resources & Links: Parenting Beyond the Rules: Raising Teens with Confidence and Joy Connect with Connie Albers: Website Equipped to Be Podcast Connie is a marketing and public relations professional with over thirty-five years of experience working in the nonprofit and for-profit markets. Connie equips families to navigate the seasons of life and parenting with her #1 ranked Amazon Hot Release book Parenting Beyond the Rules: Raising Teens with Confidence and Joy and through her blog ConnieAlbers.com. Connie also took a post at Social Media Examiner as the director of first impressions and managed volunteers for Social Media Marketing World.   She and her husband, Tom, have been married 35 years and have successfully homeschooled their five children, all of whom continued their education and graduated from the University of Central Florida on scholarship.   Connect with Esther: Esther’s other podcast, The Christian Woman Business Podcast Esther’s Website Facebook Group Facebook Page This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode119 on September 29, 2020.
Have you heard podcast guests who are living out leadership and thought, “Yeah, but I couldn’t do that”? Or perhaps you’ve thought about joining the Confident Leader Catalyst but you’re not sure if it’s right for you. In this episode, you’re going to hear from 3 women who were members of the very first round of the Confident Leader Catalyst program. They share their real life stories of why they joined, how it has impacted them, and what has changed since participating. If you’re interested in joining the Confident Leader Catalyst or just want to know more, head over to confidentleadercatalyst.com. It’s open until Friday, Sept. 25th for the fall round. After that you’re welcome to join the waitlist so you are the first to know when it’s open again. Even if the Confident Leader Catalyst isn’t for you, I know you’ll enjoy hearing these gals’ perspective on becoming confident leaders!   Key Points Discussed:   Introducing the 3 women featured on this episode [3:07] What life was like before participating in the Catalyst [5:17] Why they wanted to jump into the Confident Leader Catalyst [8:03] What made the biggest impact for them [10:50] What has changed since participating [15:44] If you’re considering joining the program [18:46] Key Quotes:   “I always thought I was confident… but I realized in taking this class that there was a lack of confidence in going forward with some of the things I wanted to do.” - Marie Weber   “I have taken action since I took this class; it has built my confidence up.” - Marie Weber   “Part of what the program did was present leadership from a Biblical worldview and some takeaways from that are leadership as a servant leader, which looks different from worldly leadership… sitting in Scriptures that focus on that was very helpful for me.” - Jennifer Tjepkes   “It’s not all about me; it’s about gifts that God gives us, and how are we stewarding that? Which feels different than me trying to shine up and be a good leader and have it come from something that I’m doing.” - Jennifer Tjepkes   “Being in the community of women was critical… it’s easy to not do it on our own; it’s harder when we’re more accountable to a group.” - Jennifer Tjepkes   “Just taking purpose and calling out of this very specific place and really understanding how general it is…who we are called to be first and foremost as Christians... that really helped me.” - Brandi Davis   “It’s in the day to day that leadership is implemented.” - Jennifer Tjepkes   “It gave me a whole different attitude of: this is where God has called me, go forward with it.” - Marie Weber   “There’s a sense of permission... to still be learning and growing and discovering parts of myself… having that permission has been freeing.” - Brandi Davis   “Don’t come in with any expectations of what the process will look like… you’ll come out on the other side and really be able to see how the Lord moved, and be able to tap into all the goodness that came from the experience.” - Brandi Davis   Are you ready to become a confident leader? My program, the Confident Leader Catalyst, is open Sept. 21st through 25th for the Fall round. It’s a step-by-step program that takes you from hesitant, confused, and stuck to confident, clear, and ready to take action. We will dive deep into helping you become a leader who has confidence, clarity, and courage so that you can step out of your comfort zone and into your calling.   Head over to confidentleadercatlyst.com to get all the details and join us now!   Connect with Esther: Esther’s other podcast, The Christian Woman Business Podcast Esther’s Website Facebook Group Facebook Page  
Have you ever struggled to discern the voice of God amidst all the other voices, including your own? Do you have trouble making decisions and feeling confident that they are in line with God’s will?   As leaders, hearing the voice of God is of utmost importance, not just for our own lives, but also as we lead others. But sometimes it can be difficult to discern God’s voice and determine where He is leading us.    In this episode, my guest Jenny Randle shares with us about some of the things that hold us back from hearing God’s voice, why it’s so vital for us to listen to God as Christian women leaders, and what a healthy theology of the Holy Spirit looks like.    In addition, Jenny shares her 7 question checklist for making decisions which is SO helpful in making some of the big decisions in life. Jenny and I also discuss the importance that church and spiritual leadership has in our lives plus what to do when what your leadership says is different from what you sense God telling you.    Join my free webinar: 3 Keys to Becoming a Confident Leader by texting the word “CONFIDENT” to 55444. If you’re hearing after the webinar is no longer available, I’ll be sure to send you some other free gift to help you become a confident leader.   For the full show notes for this episode, go to estherlittlefield.com/episode117. Key Points Discussed: Why we have a hard time hearing God’s voice [6:27] Why Jenny wrote her book [8:00] How distraction, isolation, and timidity keep us from hearing from God [10:24] What a healthy theology of the Holy Spirit looks like [26:13] Why Christian women leaders need to discern God’s voice [31:55] Jenny’s “check yourself before you wreck yourself” checklist [33:57] The importance of spiritual leaders in our lives [35:34] Red flags for identifying unhealthy leadership [44:51] How hearing God’s voice allows us to lead with confidence [50:00] Jenny’s bonus workshop within the Confident Leader Catalyst [52:00] Connect with Jenny [53:48] Resources & Links: Jenny on Episode 43  Getting to Know God’s Voice: Discover the Holy Spirit in Your Everyday Life (A 31-Day Interactive Journey) Episode 10: Finding Your Purpose   Are you ready to become a confident leader? Join my free webinar on Sept. 21, 2020: 3 Keys to Becoming a Confident Leader by texting the word “CONFIDENT” to 55444. If you’re hearing after the webinar is no longer available, I’ll be sure to send you some other free gift to help you become a confident leader. My program, the Confident Leader Catalyst, will be open soon for the Fall round. It’s a step-by-step program that takes you from hesitant, confused, and stuck to confident, clear, and ready to take action. We will dive deep into helping you become a leader who has confidence, clarity, and courage so that you can step out of your comfort zone and into your calling. Head over to confidentleadercatlyst.com to get on the waitlist now (or if you’re listening when the program is open, you can get all the details there). When you join the waitlist, I’ll also send you my free “Renew Your Mind” guide which has 12 mindset shifts to help you become a confident leader! Connect with Jenny Randle: Instagram Website How Well Do You Know God’s Voice Quiz Jenny Randle is an Emmy®-award winning editor who went on a journey to discover what it really means to live on purpose. From a career in the heart of Hollywood editing for billion-dollar franchises to a faith-based author, national speaker, and chart-topping podcaster, Jenny’s voice, and work has been featured in hundreds of notable films, print and media outlets. Her search for meaning in the everyday moments of life has led her to write Courageous Creative and her newest book, Getting to Know God’s Voice. Jenny encourages leaders, creatives, and procrastinating dreamers to get comfortably uncomfortable as they discover how God designed them on purpose too. In early 2018, Jenny and her husband Matt formed Freedom Creatives Inc., an organization dedicated to developing resources that merge profound Gospel-centered truths with practical application. They reside in Northern Florida with their two young kids.   Connect with Esther: Esther’s other podcast, The Christian Woman Business Podcast Esther’s Website Facebook Group Facebook Page   This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode117 on September 15, 2020.
What do you need to be an effective and confident leader? What traits will set you apart and help you lead well?   In this solo episode, I want to share with you 3 traits that every leader needs. These 3 traits are not an exhaustive list by any means, but they are characteristics that will help you lead more effectively.   Before we dive into the 3 traits, though, I want to share with you why I talk about confident leadership so much, and why it matters.   For the full show notes for this episode, go to estherlittlefield.com/episode116. Key Points Discussed: Why I’m passionate about confident leadership 3 Traits Every Christian Leader Needs Are you ready to become a confident leader?   Resources & Links: Episode 68 Episode 6 Episode 67 Episode 10 Episode 93 Episode 113 Confident Leader Catalyst   Celebrate my birthday with me! This Friday, I’m turning 40. I’d love to invite you to celebrate with me by sharing this episode (or any other episode) on social media, mentioning how it impacted you, and be sure to tag me.   My Facebook page (@estherlittlefield) My Instagram account (@estherdlittlefield)   Connect with Esther: Esther’s other podcast, The Christian Woman Business Podcast Esther’s Website Facebook Group Facebook Page   This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode116 on September 8, 2020.
Have you ever felt like your past disqualifies you from stepping into a leadership role? Do you ever appear confident to others but truly struggle with feeling that way? In this episode, Holly and I talk with our guest Chelsey DeMatteis about her leadership journey and how she has overcome guilt and shame about her past and stepped into leadership. She shares some of the ways God used others to help her heal and how she’s gradually grown in her leadership roles. Chelsey also provides insights into why different generations of women need one another and how we can effectively reach out to other women.   In addition, Chelsey shares that while she previously appeared as though she was very confident, she actually struggled on the inside. We discuss how God has shifted the way she perceives confidence and helped her to grow into this new perspective.   This episode is brought to you by the Confident Leader Catalyst. Click here to get on the waitlist or learn more. When you get on the waitlist, I’ll also send you my free “Renew Your Mind” guide with 12 Biblical mindset shifts you need to make to become a confident leader. For the full show notes for this episode, go to estherlittlefield.com/episode115. Key Points Discussed: Chelsey’s life & leadership [4:00] The shame and guilt Chelsey experienced and how she healed [8:41] Learning to use her gifts [15:36] Why different generations need one another [19:15] Impact of mentors in Chelsey’s leadership [24:31] Chelsey’s struggle with confidence [29:43] Refining her personality and gifts [33:12] Transitioning from working to staying at home [39:10] How Chelsey’s podcast came to be [42:26] Dealing with comparison [48:18] Leaders are learners [55:25] Connect with Chelsey: Living with Less Podcast Website Instagram Take the next Step: This episode is brought to you by the Confident Leader Catalyst. Click here to get on the waitlist or learn more. You can also find the free Confident Leader Stages Quiz here.   Become a Podcast Partner & Receive Bonus Content We have a fun way for you to partner with the podcast and get access to exclusive content. Every month, we add at least 1 bonus clip from an interview or from Holly and I to a special podcast for our partners. You can become a podcast partner for as little as $5/month by clicking here.   Connect with Esther and Holly: Esther’s Website Christian Woman Business Podcast Holly’s Website Facebook Group Facebook Page
Have you ever struggled to find the right ministry role for yourself--a place where you can use your gifts and skills to benefit God’s kingdom?   In this episode, Holly and I chat with Gena McCown about her leadership journey which includes transitioning from the marketplace to the church world. She shares insights on the differences between the two worlds and how she has handled this. We also discuss what to do when your gifts are not recognized or valued in your church or ministry, navigating volunteer leadership, and leading with a chronic illness.    If you want encouragement in finding the right ministry role for yourself or as you lead with a chronic illness, this episode is for you.    This episode is brought to you by the Confident Leader Catalyst. Click here to get on the waitlist or learn more. You can also find the free Confident Leader Stages Quiz here.   For the full show notes for this episode, visit estherlittlefield.com/episode114.   Key Points Discussed: Gena’s life & leadership [4:34] Marketplace to church world [12:28] Differences between the two settings Chain of command issue When your gifts are not recognized or used within the church [19:33] Gena’s ministry roles [28:15] Best practices for volunteer leadership [32:50]  Leading with chronic illness [43:20] Leaders are learners [53:58]   Resources & Links*: Episode 60: Glass Ceilings, Sticky Floors, and How to Be Effective as Women in Leadership with Kadi Cole Gena’s book: Women's Ministry With Purpose: A Vibrant, Gospel-centered Approach Our Struggle to Serve by Virginia Hearn Church Refugees: Sociologists reveal why people are DONE with church but not their faith by Josh Packard, Ph.D. and Ashleigh Hope The Together Project - Kadi Cole’s podcast Developing Female Leaders by Kadi Cole After Class Podcast series on women - Episode 1; Additional episodes in the series I am Leader by Angie Ward Worthy: Celebrating the Value of Women by Elyse Fitpatrick and Eric Schumacher   Key Quotes: “We lead better from within than ahead or above.”   “I always want the people I am pouring into to surpass me one day.”    “We are losing our best and our brightest because they have these gifts and talents, and they are feeling stifled in the church and unable to use them.”    “There are spaces that you are not going to be able to change; only the Lord can change their hearts. You can pray for them and not be among them.”    “Am I in a stage of stay and pray, or am I in a stage of go to grow?”    “Every leader needs to be looking for and identifying future leaders and building them up.”    “Bring them into the vision that the Lord has cast; don’t just tell them what the vision is… help them see it.”    “A lot of people with chronic illness feel forgotten about… we have to still make those people feel valued and wanted and that they have a place in the church.”   “We have to have compassion.  We have to acknowledge that these illnesses are real, that they exist, and this person still has value.”   “It is really easy to let a treading water moment turn into a quicksand moment.”   Connect with Gena: Website Gena’s book: Women's Ministry With Purpose: A Vibrant, Gospel-centered Approach   Gena McCown is a native S. Floridian, married for 22 years with 3 daughters.  She serves in her church as a Women's Ministry Leader, and has written the book Women's Ministry with Purpose: A Gospel Centered Approach.  In addition to serving in her local church, Gena teaches a college course on Women's Ministry through Christian Leaders Institute and founded the Women's Ministry Council to provide practical ministry training to women called to leadership.     Connect with Esther and Holly: Esther’s Website Christian Woman Business Podcast Holly’s Website Facebook Group Facebook Page   *Affiliate links are present. If you purchase through one of these links, it supports the podcast, so thank you! This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode114.  
Our culture and our world sets us up to believe that the value of what you do in life is related to the size of what you do. Therefore, leadership can often be seen as ‘unimportant’ if it’s on a smaller scale or with small numbers. But we believe that “leading small” is an important opportunity and can have a big impact. In this episode, Holly and I are talking about leading small--what this means, why it’s important, and how to navigate it well. If you’ve ever felt like what you are doing or how you are currently leading is less valuable because it’s “small”, be sure to take a listen.   Key Points Discussed: What “Leading Small” Means Why Leading Small Matters How to navigate leading small well Ways to invest in your leadership while you lead small Learn to develop your discernment in decision making Figure out your motives Create healthy habits and figure out your baseline Find those who supplement your weakness and create a “cabinet” of trusted friends for the long haul Grow in integrity Learn to love those you lead when they are unloveable, difficult, or “unleadable” Develop courage and perseverance  Learn to learn (i.e. become coachable) Develop your confidence  Listen to past episodes about confidence to understand the role it plays in your leadership (see list below) Take the stages of confident leadership quiz to determine your next steps   Action Step: Join the Purposeful Leadership FB Group and tell us from the list of ways to prepare: what is one thing you are not doing that you will start?    Other Episodes & Resources Mentioned Episode 80: How to Avoid the Trap of Niceness and Speak Boldly with Sharon Hodde Miller  Episode 6: The Importance of Leading with Confidence Episode 67: The 5 Reasons Confidence Makes You a More Effective Leader Episode 68: What You Need to Know About Becoming a Confident Leader Stages of Confident Leadership Quiz Confident Leader Catalyst My Biz Bestie: How the Brain Works with Melina Palmer Connect with Esther and Holly: Esther’s other podcast, The Christian Woman Business Podcast Esther’s Website Holly’s Website Instagram Facebook Group Facebook Page   This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode113 on August 18, 2020.
Christian leaders are often passionate about what they believe. But they do not always share their personal convictions in ways that are healthy or productive. There is real danger when Christian leaders use their personal convictions as a mandate for how others should live. Doing this tends to lead towards legalism and away from discernment. But what should we be doing instead? In this episode, I’m diving into a topic that is relevant to what is happening in our world right now. You can’t go on social media or the news lately without seeing people, including Christian leaders, making blanket statements about what you should or should not be doing (wearing masks, how to respond to racism, etc). And while I sometimes agree with the recommendations, I’m concerned with the ways they are being communicated. In many cases, leaders are creating a set of rules that you must follow in order to be seen as a ‘real Christian’... and this is legalism. But how can we share our convictions and beliefs without promoting legalism? Today I’m sharing from a blog post that I wrote previously with 5 principles for sharing our convictions as leaders.  Click here for the full show notes for this episode. Connect with Esther and Holly: Esther’s other podcast, The Christian Woman Business Podcast Esther’s Website Holly’s Website Instagram Facebook Group Facebook Page   This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode112.
How do you trust God when your entire world is turned upside down? And how do you cling to truth when you’re the target of criticism and doubt? Amanda Florczykowksi joins me for this episode to share her story of a first-hand encounter with a sex trafficking attempt, her decision to go public with the experience, and the resistance she ran into as a result. Take a listen to hear how Amanda learned to trust God in the midst of each step of her journey, as well as how she was able to choose truth in the midst of doubts.   Key Points: Amanda’s life & leadership [4:27] What led Amanda to write her book “Unraveled” [9:34] Going public with her story [17:30] Processing criticism and rejection [24:05] How rejection changed her view of persecution [28:12] How to respond to criticism as a leader [33:01] Importance of having a mission and vision Know when it’s time to lead and when it’s time to leave Never give up Dealing with doubt from those who are closest to you [38:57] Leadership lessons from the publishing process [50:31] Leaders are Learners [54:40] Key Quotes: “I never questioned God, but I started to question my perception of him.” “Every good leader at some point has had to wrestle in pain and the ones that emerge the best leaders are the ones that have encountered it and been able to walk through it with the Lord.” “You have so much for grace for people when you recognize it is a spiritual battle.” “When you understand in leadership that you will be misunderstood--I didn’t say judged, but misunderstood--it gives you room to love and the grace to recover.” “When the voice we trust on earth the most makes us feel like God can’t be trusted we must choose truth. You have to choose truth.” “Wise counsel should never trump God’s word or what He has spoken to us.” “Know how to study your bible, then study it.” “Christian leaders are so needed, but you have to start with God’s word to be impactful.” Resources & Links: Amanda’s book - Unraveled: Mothering Fiercely in a World Full of Fears Leadership as an Identity by Crawford Loritts The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell   Connect with Amanda: Website Free resources from Amanda Facebook Instagram   Amanda Florczykowski is an intrinsic lover of risk, progress, and people. Her ability to merge all three embodies her personal mission. Her love for women, her desire to see families strengthened, and her unabashed faith in Christ Jesus have led her to found a MOPS International© ministry group and a University-Model® School. As a degreed communicator, Amanda’s professional career, pre-kiddos, included awards and high heels as both an educator and top marketing professional for an industry leader.    When not involved in family life, reading, or writing, Amanda uses her pioneering ambition and experience to partner with business CEO and Development Pastor husband to consult with organizations who desire to prosper. Lastly, she is a magnetic motivator speaking on the topics of motherhood, leadership, and faith (see ‘Speaking’ tab above).    Amanda’s family of six, along with their German Shepherd, Radd, live in the Texas Hill Country outside Austin. And while accomplishments are part of a bio, Amanda wants you to know they don't rival her joys; a nightly sunset, "I love you" from her child's mouth, answered prayers, a good night's rest, a big, Saturday breakfast, a clean kitchen, a hot bath, board games, finding $10 in her pocket, a good movie, date night, and welcoming friends into her home to eat and laugh. Support the podcast Our Merch Store Click here to go to the store and find merch you'll love! If you grab one of the items and share a photo on social media, use the hashtag #leadwithconfidence and/or tag us so we can see it! Tag @estherdlittlefield on Instagram Tag @estherlittlefield on Facebook   Become a Podcast Partner & Receive Bonus Content We have a fun way for you to partner with the podcast and get access to exclusive content. Every month, we add at least 1 bonus clip from an interview or from Holly and I to a special podcast for our partners. You can become a podcast partner for as little as $5/month by clicking here.   Connect with Esther and Holly: Esther’s Website Christian Woman Business Podcast Holly’s Website Instagram Facebook Group Facebook Page   This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode111.  
Do you have a dream or an idea about something God is calling you to do, but you’re not sure how to step out into the unknown?  Often we sense God calling us to something new, something different… but we are afraid to take those first steps, especially when we don’t know what the outcome is going to be. In our final episode of our Summer Throwback Series, you’ll hear from several of our past guests and find out how they were able to take courageous steps into something new. You’ll hear about their real life experiences as well as glean wisdom and hear their recommendations for how you can take your first steps.   Featured Guests on this episode: Tembi Secrist, Episode 83 [3:21] Rachel Pellegrino, Episode 69 [7:19] Merritt Onsa, Episode 47 [12:52] Jocelyn Sams, Episode 54 [19:00] Stefanie Gass, Episode 71 [21:08] Final thoughts from Esther [24:00]   I did not include this one in the clips, but I want to point you to Episode 93 if you are experiencing hesitation or doubts about pursuing a dream or calling God has given you. In that episode, I talk about 5 obstacles to pursuing your purpose and give you some encouragement around getting started.   Key Quotes from this throwback episode:   “It really was hearing God’s voice, stepping out without really knowing what that meant at the time, but trusting that God was gonna take me through.” - Tembi Secrist   “I don’t think you can ever lead well without wise counsel.” - Rachel Pellegrino “I needed to wrestle, because otherwise I wouldn’t really need Him.” - Merritt Onsa   “A lot of people ‘kinda’ want to do something, but if you are not all in on it, it’s not going to happen.” - Jocelyn Sams   “If you have that tug on your heart or that feeling that you need to do ‘a thing’, but you’re not sure how… God already has the plan, He already has the solutions.” - Stefanie Gass   Support the podcast Our Merch Store Click here to go to the store and find merch you'll love! If you grab one of the items and share a photo on social media, use the hashtag #leadwithconfidence and/or tag us so we can see it! Tag @estherdlittlefield or @christianwomanleadership on Instagram Tag @estherlittlefield on Facebook   Become a Podcast Partner & Receive Bonus Content We have a fun way for you to partner with the podcast and get access to exclusive content. Every month, we add at least 1 bonus clip from an interview or from Holly and I to a special podcast for our partners. You can become a podcast partner for as little as $5/month by clicking here.   Connect with Esther and Holly: Esther’s Website Holly’s Website Facebook Group Facebook Page   This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode110.
What are some of the best and most unexpected things to come out of 2 years of the Christian Woman Leadership Podcast?   In this episode, Holly and I are celebrating our two year anniversary by answering some of your questions about the podcast. We’ll share what we’ve learned, favorite guests, best things to come as a result, and much more. Plus, we share some of our reflections and let you know the top 5 episodes since we started! Key Points Discussed: Invitation to join our group [1:50] Bonus podcast for our supporters [4:00] Answering your questions [7:11] What has been the best thing that has happened for you during this 2 year journey? What are your family traditions or routines? Do you have any regrets from this journey? Or otherwise ways you would have done things differently had you the opportunity to do it again? What unexpected lessons have you learned (good or bad) from starting a podcast? And what's kept you going for 2 years without getting burned out? Which guest(s) moved you, surprised you, made you laugh, changed your thoughts on a topic, challenged you, etc.? Episode 103 with Dr. Shannon Polk Episode 59 with Hillary Morgan Ferrer Episode 90 with Valerie Woerner Episode 80 with Sharon Hodde Miller Episode 60 with Kadi Cole Episode 96 with Alisa Childers Bonus episode with Emily P. Freeman Our Top 5 Episodes in 2 years of the podcast [32:00] Episode 1: Our Leadership Journeys & What to Expect Episode 81: Dealing with Burnout, Compassion Fatigue, and Mental Health as a Christian Leader with Laura Howe Episode 80: How to Avoid the Trap of Niceness and Speak Boldly with Sharon Hodde Miller Episode 64: The Power of Community Through Devastating Seasons with Brandi Wilson  83: When God Shifts Your Path Into the Unknown with Tembi Secrist - A Leader’s Journey Around the World Part 1 Our total downloads for the podcast [36:20] Other reflection questions [37:21] What is a topic we haven’t covered that you’d like to cover this year? What has been something that has stuck with you that a listener has said to you? Holly & Esther’s updates [48:00] A recent listener review [52:30] Fun question of the week: What other podcasts do you listen to? [54:30] The Ops Authority The Christian Woman Business Podcast Grit with Jessica Stansberry Living Proof with Beth Moore Made for This with Jennie Allen The Way I Heard It with Mike Rowe The Legacy Entrepreneur with Lindsey Johnson Go to Gal with Jaclyn Mellone My Biz Bestie The Next Right Thing Friending with Noelle P. Rhodes Grace in Real Life with Jill E. McCormick   Other links mentioned: Episode 57: One Year Anniversary Esther’s new business podcast Holly’s updated business endeavor: Prosper Collective Holly’s post about growing tomatoes and our gifts   Connect with Esther and Holly: Esther’s Website Holly’s Website Facebook Group Facebook Page This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode109.
How do you respond when you meet resistance to using your gifts as a female Christian leader? What about when you face criticism and challenges to what God has called you to do?   All of us will experience resistance, criticism, and challenges as Christian leaders. It’s how we respond and handle these situations that really matters.    In this episode of our Summer Throwback Series, you’ll hear from several of our past guests and find out what they have learned in these situations. Plus, you’ll receive practical wisdom that you can apply in your own life as a leader.   For the full show notes for this episode, visit estherlittlefield.com/episode108.   Featured Guests on this episode: Jenni Catron, Episode 11 [2:55] Esther & Holly, Episode 17 [6:45] Tembi Secrist, Episode 84 [10:15] Jenny Randle, Episode 43 [16:03] Kadi Cole, Episode 60 [21:00] Dr. Shannon Polk, Episode 103 [26:34] Alisa Childers, Episode 96 [29:40]   Key Quotes from this throwback episode: “That ambition, that drive, that achiever in me is not all bad. I just have to find the part of it that God is forming and reforming, and not be afraid of it… but to completely shut it down is to not steward that gift that God has given me.” - Jenni Catron   “If I am looking for affirmation or value or approval for anything outside of [God’s love], then I’m going to struggle.” - Esther Littlefield   “When you are in the middle of the situation, you are aware of things and options and the nuances that not everyone else will be aware of… the most important thing is: if God has called you, you have to go.” - Tembi Secrist    “If you are letting other people’s criticism or feedback define you, you’re not going to get anything done.” - Jenny Randle   “These are my 2 anchors: I want to be honest about myself and what I’ve done without bragging, and I want to be honoring where I’m not usurping or putting anyone down.” - Kadi Cole   “Go where you are celebrated, not where you are tolerated.” - Dr. Shannon Polk   “We are doing spiritual warfare in the realm of ideas, and we have to realize that people are going to hate that. We have to see everybody as Jesus sees them, and hope that there’s something we can say that will soften or diffuse so that they can hear what we have to say.” - Alisa Childers   Support the podcast Our Merch Store Click here to go to the store and find merch you'll love! If you grab one of the items and share a photo on social media, use the hashtag #leadwithconfidence and/or tag us so we can see it! Tag @estherdlittlefield or @christianwomanleadership on Instagram   Tag @estherlittlefield on Facebook   Become a Podcast Partner & Receive Bonus Content We have a fun way for you to partner with the podcast and get access to exclusive content. Every month, we add at least 1 bonus clip from an interview or from Holly and I to a special podcast for our partners. You can become a podcast partner for as little as $5/month by clicking here.   Connect with Esther and Holly: Esther’s Website Holly’s Website Instagram Facebook Group Facebook Page   This episode was originally published on estherlittlefield.com/episode108.  
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