“Not a numbers person? You can be!” with Elle Connolly

I meet a lot of business owners who say they are not good with numbers.

In today’s episode, I chat with Elle from 23 Wise Words about how important understanding numbers is for business owners and how she got more familiar with her numbers and money.

In this Episode:

05.13: Why Elle joined the Mastermind to stop ‘coasting along’ in her business
07.21: Embracing your numbers as a business owner, even if you aren’t a numbers person
11.15: How Elle tracked her money to move past the scarcity money blocks
14.20: Why doing the mindset work isn’t just something that happens overnight
18.40: How creatives can take responsibility of their numbers and harness their manifesting powers


Guest Bio

Elle work with coaches, consultants and course creators who understand the glorious power that sales copy has to take their business higher ( and higher, and higher ).

With a background in psychology and 10+ years in marketing, Elle writes sales and launch copy that turns words in to sales, combining buyer psychology, proven conversion-copywriting principles and brand voice.

Until the copy is so packed with strategy, it’s about to burst.


Let me guess, you’re not a numbers person. I meet a lot of business owners who say they’re not good with numbers or not good with money, but as today’s guest on the podcast, Elle from 23 Wise Words explains, when you’re a business owner, it’s not good enough to say you’re not good with numbers, but there is a way that you can get more familiar with your numbers and your money in an easy way. Elle shares lots of amazing money mindset hacks in this episode as well, and I hope this episode leaves you inspired to learn to love your numbers.


Hello, and welcome to The Clare Wood Podcast, where myself and incredible guests share about money mindset, financial successes, and how to manage your money in a fun and practical way to create wealth and abundance in both your business and your life. I’m your host, Clare Wood. I’m a business coach and a money mentor. I strongly believe that money has the power to positively change the world. I can’t wait to help you transform your mindset around money, create a love of numbers and build the business of your dreams so you can live a life of financial freedom, giving, and global impact.


Doors to my high ticket Mastermind, the Mind to Money Mastermind are now open. This high ticket community is about surrounding yourself with people doing amazing things in their businesses and helping you to unpick both some of the money blocks that are holding you back from building the business that you dream of, but also how to take the practical actions required to scale your business towards the million dollar mark. If you would like to find out more about the Mastermind, you can do so by clicking on the link in the show notes for today’s episode.


A big warm welcome to the podcast, Elle, all the way from the UK. Would you like to introduce yourself to the listeners and share what it is that you do and how you help people?


Hi, Clare. Thanks for having me on. Yeah, all the way from England. 6:00 AM here. I run a business called 23 Wise Words. I’m a copywriter. I help mainly small businesses, many women, it tends to be. I think women seem to attract women in business. I write sales copy predominantly. So there’s lots of different ways of saying it’s a sales copy or club version copy, some people call it. I work a lot with coaches and people that are launching and write copy that helps them get clicks, if I say. So a lot of website copy, a lot of sales pages, and funnel copy and that kind of thing, but really, with that kind of sales focus in mind. There’s a lot of misconception around the idea of content versus copy. I always say my side of it is very much that getting the clicks rather than the brand awareness in the content side.


I love that. So what’s the difference? Just to expand a little bit more on that, what’s the difference between… If people come to you and ask you to write blogs or website, is that something that you do or are you really focused around the selling process?


Yeah. I used to. I think it’s a natural progression for me. I find a lot of copywriters will call themselves copywriters, but traditionally, copy is more of that you are getting people to take an action, which is a little bit more of a high commitment than just following on Instagram or liking my blog. So content is very much, in my perspective anyway, that content marketing side. So you might be writing Facebook posts or blog articles or eBooks, and it’s all about brand awareness and getting people to engage with your brand and maybe a low commitment like a blog post or make a comment on a blog post, but you’re not necessarily asking them to do anything that’s a little bit more high commitment like work with you or that kind of thing. Content writing is brand awareness and copywriting is more that sales focus. The minute I say sales, everyone’s like, “Oh, no.” I don’t like sales copy. It’s not salesy. It’s not sleazy. It doesn’t mean that we’re really hard pushing the sell, it’s just that that’s the end goal and we’re leading people on the journey towards that end goal.


Isn’t it funny? This is a mindset thing straight away, isn’t it? Even business owners freak out about the word selling, but at the end of the day, we are all in sales. We have a service or a product that we’re selling. But let’s talk all about mindset. Before we dive into that, let’s backtrack a little bit to when we first met, because you were obviously in the last round of my Mastermind. So I’d love to ask you, why did you decide to jump into the Mastermind?



Why Elle joined the Mastermind to stop ‘coasting along’ in her business



I kind of cussed my mind, that. I was just ready to do something different. I’d been toasting along and yes, growing year on year, but I was five, six years in and I was just like, if I don’t push myself to do something that’s a little bit above where I think I am right now, then I am just going to… I could happily coast like that probably for forever. I was earning decent amount of money. I was happy with what I was doing. There was no huge life event that made me like, “I need to do this now,” but I just didn’t want to settle where I was. I wanted to make sure I was pushing myself and the Mastermind came up and I was just like… Obviously, I did the whole thing, watching you and seeing how things are. Sitting back and watching things for a few months. Then I just thought, “Yeah, if I don’t do this now, I’ll just stay like this forever.” So it was more this me trying to push myself to do something that I wouldn’t normally do.

I knew that being in that head space, spending that money, being around those people that are in that head space as well was just going to really elevate my business more than I was at. I needed that support around me. I needed that kind of push.


Isn’t it amazing the decisions that we make in our life? It just happens in a moment sometimes, doesn’t it? Or it can take a long time and then a decision happens in a moment. Well, I’m super glad that you did come into the Mastermind. Thank you so much for joining us for the last round. Let’s have maybe a bit of a chat about my favorite subject, money, one of my favorite subjects. You are obviously a creative. You are very clever with words. The fact that I was talking a lot about money and numbers, was that a bit of a turnoff for you when you first, I guess, finding out about my brand and about the Mastermind?



Embracing your numbers as a business owner, even if you aren’t a numbers person



No, that was actually the reason where I was like, “This is right for me.” Because I think if you carry on attracting or going into spaces where that’s how you think anyway, you’re never going to learn anything new and you’re never going to expand your mindset or what you know. The money side for me was actually the thing that made me think this is actually what I need, because like you said, I’m a writer. I’m not a numbers person. I hide behind words. I don’t think in numbers. I don’t need to think in numbers, but I actually knew that I did. You can’t run a business unless you do know your numbers and you’re thinking about your numbers and you’re confident in your numbers. The fact that you talked a lot about money was actually the reason why I was like, “Yeah, this is what I need because I don’t think about money and I need someone to be like, ‘You need to think about money.’” So that was the kind of thing. I needed someone to do that for me. So, yeah, that was the kind of thing that made me think, yeah.


What were some ways that this was showing up in your life, in your business? How were you going, I really need to focus on this? Were there some indicators or things that were coming up for you?


Like I said, I wasn’t doing badly. I was fine for money. It wasn’t that it was like, I need more money, although obviously, I need more money. It was more that I couldn’t get past this certain point. I’m sure a lot of people can relate when you’re a service business and your time is capped in number of hours per week. It had got to that point where I was like, right. I never thought of this before I started. Outside service business is easy if you don’t really have any overheads. It’s just you. So I was like, “This is great.” But actually, what you don’t think about is that you only have so many hours in a day and once those hours are filled, that’s your income cap unless you start that employing people and grow that way, well, so I thought. So I was like, “Well, that’s the only really way to expand,” and I didn’t want to employ people. I just didn’t feel like that was the way I wanted my business to go.

Maybe in the future that’ll be different, but definitely at that point, I’m not ready. I don’t want to employ. That’s not the way I want to do it. So how do I scale? How do I move up when I’m exchanging my time for money? So that’s how I came to realise that I did need to think a little bit more strategically about money if I did want to get past this point and how do I scale past the point of it just being me. So that was another really big thing for me and something you talked about a lot was, how do you create something bigger than yourself when you are your business? So I think that was more the trigger. Although I knew I wanted to know more about the money side of it, it was also the fact that I needed to know how to scale up without employing more people.


I’ve just been talking about this a lot on the podcast actually. I call it the 6 figure plateau. I find that it happens when you hit the six or the early six figure mark, and then you cap out. I know it definitely happened to me as well that you reach a point and you’re like, “What happens from here?” I’ve just run a whole training, actually, called, 6 Figures, Now What? about this exact topic. I love that you’ve brought that up.

So you’ve jumped into the Mastermind. What were some of the big a-has that you had inside the program?



How Elle tracked her money to move past the scarcity money blocks



Yeah. The big one for me was the tracking, tracking money. Really, this is how much I’ve earned. This is how much I want to earn. What does that bigger actually look like? What are my expenses? How can I grow while my expenses grow and still earn money and just really delving into it and delving into why I don’t like money, why I have this whole mindset around it. What were the blocks that were stopping me moving forward? It was definitely that whole… It comes up again and again, that whole scarcity mindset. If I spent money, it’s going to run out. There isn’t more to come. So just getting over that whole block of you have to spend, you have to flow to and from you, you can’t just take it in and hold onto it and then just expect that the energy around money is going to be positive.

Yeah, that kind of spreadsheeting, I think, was a big aha, and definitely the scaling side. So that kind of helping me with the launching my digital product, which I would not… Look, I’m quite a productive person. I do get stuff done, but I would not have launched my course without you guys being there, being like, “Come on, when is this going to happen?” that accountability side of it. That was huge for me as well. That was another massive part of it, just being able to launch something and that whole aha moment around realising how I can scale without having to employ people. Oh, okay, I can put my IP into a digital product and share the message to lots of people that way. So those were two massive aha moments for me.


I love that. I think that’s my big thing. I think that you’ve got to figure out how to scale in a way that feels good for you. I don’t think that everyone has to have a course. I don’t think that everyone has to build a big team. I think it’s really going well. What works for me and my lifestyle and how I want to run it and then starting to actually take action, big, scary action with it. Another thing that you touched on that I thought was really interesting, and this is something, I wonder if people question themselves in this, but it’s like, “Well, why don’t people just do it? Why didn’t you just launch?” So can we dive into it little bit more? Because people often don’t understand. They don’t get what mindset is and I bang on and on and on about why mindsets is so important. They’re like, “We’ll just do the thing.” So can you, in your words, explain why that doesn’t work, why you need to have the right mindset first?



Why doing the mindset work isn’t just something that happens overnight



Yeah. I think because when you don’t realise that it’s a mindset block, you believe the stories to be true. So no matter how many times someone would say to me like, “You do have enough knowledge,” say for example, “to… So my courses is around teaching people how to write websites. I have written probably hundreds of websites by this point, but I still, in my head, was like, “Oh, do I? Can I teach people how to write their own website?” There’s all these stories then that come up like, “Oh, no. People don’t want to know how to write their own website. They want someone to do it,” but all the stories and unless you know that that is a mindset look, you just believe that’s the truth. That is your truth. So it’s like, “Well, no. That is actually true.” But then when you actually start going back and diving into it, you’re like, “No, that’s not true.” That’s the story. And so many times we’d be on the Mastermind chatting as a group and someone would say something and you’d be like, “That’s the story.” I’d be like, “Yeah, it is a story.”

When you hear it, someone say it, and then you start understanding what mindset blocks are then you do start noticing the stories in other people. I had a client who wanted to start recording videos on Instagram for her business, but she was like, “Well, I don’t want to do it yet because my brand tagline. I can’t start recording videos until I know that brand tagline so I can say them.”

Then I start noticing the stories in other people, and I was like, “That’s the story.” That’s the story you’re telling yourself. Stop. It’s kind of a defensing so you don’t have to record the videos. Of course, you can start recording and then once we have this brand tagline, you can start introducing it. It’s funny how you start questioning yourself in every aspect of your life as well. It’s not just about the money and the business. It’s everything. I know stories in myself now were parenting and in my relationships. Even for seeing my friends, I’m like, “Oh, no, I can’t do that because I’ll be too tired or something.” Then I’m like, “Is that a story I’m telling myself when actually, there’s another reason behind it?”

I think it’s huge knowing that mindset is not the truth. I think that’s the big shift, just standing back and questioning things a little bit more. Maybe it is the truth at the end, but as long as you’ve questioned it and got to the bottom of why you might be thinking it, then you do know either way. So that’s huge, I think, just identifying those mindset a lot.


I love that. You’ve explained it so well. I knew a words person would explain it really well. Yeah. Our subconscious mind is so powerful, and these stories, they come from somewhere. I didn’t think I had any stories. Then the more work that I do in this space, I must say in a day, “Oh, that’s a story. Or is that a truth? Is that a belief?” I think this is a thing too that I’m such a big believer that the mindset work needs to keep on happening because I find as my business is growing at every new stage, there’s new stories. Oh, hiring someone means whatever. This course name isn’t resonating with people. I need to come up with a new name for my course, whatever it might be. It’s just really questioning.

Sometimes maybe it is the truth, but to your point, like just questioning, is this a truth? Is it a story? What else could be a possibility? What else could be a reality if I allowed myself to think differently about it? Cool. So lots of good stuff going on there. Thank you so much for sharing some of your insights into mindset. Coming back to spreadsheeting and numbers, do you find that lots of creatives perhaps are a bit like you and think that they don’t need to know their numbers?



How creatives can take responsibility of their numbers and harness their manifesting powers 



For some reason, people’s categorised them in either numbers people or not numbers people. There’s two camps and you either are or you aren’t. It’s funny because my husband, his job is numbers, contracts, money, spreadsheets. That is him. I almost then, because of that, hid behind him as well. It was like, “Well, I’m a creative, so I don’t have to worry about… I don’t think about numbers. I don’t think in numbers.” Also, in my personal life, I don’t have to think about numbers because that’s his domain. So I hid behind that for a lot of years. I knew what was going on in my business. It wasn’t that I was not invoicing and had no idea what I was earning and things, but I didn’t really delve any deeper than that.

It wasn’t a case of, “Okay, so what could I do here to increase this?” or “What if I spend this, how much will that take away from my time?” Well, like adding things up over a whole year. It’s interesting to kind of, so this is how much is a month. That’s as far as my in. But then I’m like, “Okay, but over a year, that’s going to be this much.” Just thinking a little bit broad, which sounds so silly, but when you are a numbers person or you don’t identify as a numbers person, you don’t really delve any deeper than what’s the first value. Now, I’ve really started. Now, I have these spreadsheets. So I have a spreadsheet where I can track my income and what I want my income to be over the month, and then annually as well.

Then also, shifting it as well. I’m thinking it’s not just about how much I’m bringing in for how much I’m invoicing my business, but how am I manifesting money in other ways? That’s all adding to that positivity around money and that mindset block that I had, which was that money’s scarce and it’s going to run out and I have to hold onto it. So for me, really identifying other areas that money does come to me is really helpful for me to then shift to a more positive thought process about money. It’s not just that I have to earn money and I earn money and I invoice money and that’s how I get money. I can manifest it in other ways. I might get a freebie from somewhere or a discount from somewhere or someone might give me a present, and all that is manifesting money as well.

So I track all that as well now because it just makes me feel so good then at the end of the month because it isn’t just about how hard I work, although that is a huge contributing factor, but as I am more positive about money, as I understand its energy, that it flows to and from me, and then I can see how I’m manifesting it more and more because my energy has shifted around it in other ways. So that’s been massive for me as well, just that whole idea of money is energy and money is positive energy and not… Whenever I used to think about money, it’s funny, I used to always have this clenched, almost holding it close to me like I can’t let go.

So I try and do more positive postures around it as well and just being bit more open, opening my arms out and being like money can flow to me and flows from me as well and that’s fine. It doesn’t matter that it’s flowing away. That whole idea of manifesting money and not just making money as part of your income as well.


Oh, I love that. So many good things in. I know that it’s something that my coach actually said to me just recently. She’s like, “Don’t dictate to money the how,” because I’ve seen this with clients and they’re like, “It’s all doom and gloom,” and then they have a slow month in business. I’m like, “But you just sold your house and made a ton of unexpected money over there,” or “Your partner just landed that dream job, and now you guys don’t have to worry about cash anymore.” I think that’s one of the things that I really love to explore and play with money, is this fact that to your point, it can show up and come to you in any way. If you are not appreciative of it… Let me share an example. Sorry to go on a bit of a detour here.

I shared on the podcast that I had a launch and I didn’t have as many people come in. I was like, “Oh, that’s not what I was hoping for,” but then someone new joined in the Mastermind and that was obviously a significant amount of money coming in. I was like, “Wow, that’s way more than I’d hope to make off the launch.” So if you aren’t open to that, if you just focused in and say, “Well, this has been a failure” or “This month’s been a failure,” or whatever it might be and actually don’t look at the big picture, then you’re not actually appreciating what is showing up for you, which leans into that whole practice of gratitude and appreciation and things like that, doesn’t it?


Definitely, definitely, and just almost surrendering the outcome a little bit or like you said, the how, that’s massive. That is massive. Just trying not to control the how as much and it’s just like, “This is where I would like to be,” and surrendering to how you get there in a way. Yeah, it does make a massive difference. If you’re putting out negative energy around money, it’s not a nice feeling and that’s never going to help you expand and grow, so I think just having a positive energy around it. Like you said, if you don’t earn as much as you wanted in that month, then what are the positives? What gratitude can you take in other, maybe like your…

For me, I always find whenever I don’t earn as much or there was a month where I didn’t hit my target, my husband will somehow get money. I feel like I manifest through him a lot, which is really annoying, but sometimes I’m like, “I’ve been doing all this work,” trying to manifest and he is like, “Oh, I just happened to have an extra. I’ve got the tax rebate” or something. And I’m like, “How’s this happened?” Then I’m like, “Oh, it was me. It was me manifesting through you.”


I love that. It’s funny, isn’t it, that the letting go of the how? I find it’s this delicate balance between what we spoke about earlier like the spreadsheeting, like actually knowing your numbers, getting into the details, setting plans, but also being okay. This is what I find is that the hard thing for people to go over there like, “But look what the spreadsheet’s saying.” And I’m like, “Yeah, but what if there’s another possibility? What if money’s going to show up in a different way and being open to that?” Do you know what? Even if money doesn’t show up in another way, focusing in on what has shown up for you. If you are always living in what you don’t have, you’re living in lack. So I love, love, love that you’ve shared that. Amazing. Well, is there anything else? We’ve been talking a lot about the Mastermind. Is there anything else that you want to share with the listeners about either money, mindset, or your Mastermind experience?



Yeah. I just go back to that idea of questioning, of always with the money mindset of just questioning yourself a little bit, because I think that is a huge turning point when you start understanding that what you believe to be true might not be true. I think with the Mastermind, look, you have to come in knowing that you’re going to be talking about money and you’re going to have to be ready to look at money and not hide behind not being a numbers person anymore. But there’s no way that not knowing that side of things can’t be good for your business. It’s not like one of those situations where you’re like, “Well, I could have gone by without knowing my numbers.” You have to know your numbers. I would say, if you ever, ever, heard yourself say, “I’m not a numbers person,” this is the kind of thing you need to do because that was what I said for 36 years.

But no, you are a numbers person. Say you have to be a numbers person and you can be and it’s not scary. You can’t not do it. It’s like what I say with my people that I teach to copyright. People say, “I can’t write,” and that’s a story as well. I can’t write. The science behind writing, just like the science behind the numbers side of things. You can learn science. You can learn the techniques. You can learn the strategies. You can learn how to do things in a way that makes the outcome what you want it, and that can apply to writing, and that could apply to numbers as well. So not being a numbers person isn’t an excuse.


I love that. I love that. Well, if people are listening and thinking, I’m not a words person and I want to learn how to be a words person, how can they find out more about your course or about working with you?


Yeah. The best place is probably Instagram. So I’m @23wisewords like the number 23 and then wise words on Instagram. Post a lot of copywriting tips on there. Then the links in my bio, you can get to my courses and all the various other things I’ve got. So that’s the best place to start, I would say.


Amazing. Well, I will pop those links in the show notes for today’s episode as well. Elle does post some… I love the post you did recently about examples of good copy and bad copy. You were showing how people had just not nailed their brand. I thought it was so clever. I will share her links in the show notes for today’s episode. If you are loving the sound of the Mastermind, don’t forget that the doors are closing very soon for the remainder of 2021 until Q2 2022, so this is your last chance to jump in. Elle, thank you so much for joining today. It’s been an absolute pleasure chatting to you again and I appreciate your time.


Thanks, Clare. Speak soon.


Thanks so much for listening. If you love this episode, please share it with your audience and don’t forget to tag me on Instagram at @clare_wood_coach. Also, make sure you hit subscribe so you never miss an episode. Have an abundant week and I look forward to talking to you again next week.


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