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Community Highlights: Meet Melissa Drake of Uncorped Influence

Today we’d like to introduce you to Melissa Drake.

Hi Melissa, so excited to have you on the platform. So before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
I started working at a very young age—14. At 19, I began working full-time in the insurance industry. I spent 25 years climbing the ranks in the corporate world, ending up as a director reporting to the CEO. At the age of 31, I completed my college degree, a B.A. in Business Management, graduating cum laude, while attending school full time, working full-time, and raising my son as a single mother. I went through many of life’s tough transitions throughout my career, including divorce, co-parenting, major depressive disorder, losing both of my parents in the same year, two concurrent chronic illnesses, and the empty nest.

When an unexpected job elimination occurred in 2015, I took it as a lead from the Universe and chose to make changes in my life. I became a certified life coach through an organization in LA and traveled to California to explore the culture. I fell in love with the way I feel in California and the diversity of people and activities. I quickly decided to uproot my entire life to move here from Des Moines, Iowa. At age 46, I sold the home I’d owned for nearly 20 years, left the only environment I’d ever known, and moved across the country with only the belongings that would fit in my SUV.

At the time, I was on contract managing a coaching organization’s blog and mentoring their coaches to share their stories, but it was only a $1500 stipend. I had no idea how I’d make enough money to live in California, but I knew I would. I took the leap, learned new skills, and set about creating the life and business of my dreams in California. A few months after I arrived, I left the coaching company and wrote a manifesto that would eventually become the first draft of my TEDx Talk, “The Dance of Collaboration.” The following year, I wrote my first book and I’m currently polishing my second.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
The road I traveled has been quite the adventure, which is much different from the endless loops of the same thing I’d traveled before. It’s not been without trials, though. When I moved to California, I was in love with LIFE. I was excited and passionate about everything I pursued. It wasn’t long before I became much more interested in making a living than actually living. I stopped doing all the fun things I did when I first moved, like networking, attending events, and exploring the culture. While my income grew exponentially—quickly exceeding six figures, my happiness declined rapidly and I experienced symptoms of burnout.

Another major challenge I faced was related to my own expectations. After delivering my TEDx Talk, I expected to be jet-setting around the world, sharing the message of collaboration I’d crafted. While I did speak at a few events, the message didn’t take off as I expected it to. That caused me to doubt my path, the message, and its alignment in my life. As a result of the doubt and fear, I stopped promoting myself and even began to question the message I knew I was born to deliver.

The very day I published my book, I lost a five-figure monthly retainer contract without notice. I wasn’t exactly worried because I planned to be touring and presenting workshops related to my book’s content. Less than a month later, the world shut down for the pandemic. This brought up so much fear in me. For the first time since I’d become a full-time entrepreneur, I longed for an employer to share the burden of uncertainty. My mental health took a turn for the worse, and I spent most of 2020 healing wounds I thought I’d addressed many years ago. Except this time, rather than glossing over my wounds, I questioned everything, confronted the root causes of my wounds, and built a brand new foundation for my life.

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about Uncorped Influence?
I share stories of hope and inspiration through the books I write and the talks I deliver. I also partner with other coaches and creatives to share their stories and market their creations. I consider myself a bit of a mystic midwife assisting others to conceive, birth, and expand their dreams. I help people find solutions and go further than they imagined. I work primarily with stories and help people write and publish articles and books, establish their online presence and social media platform, promote their stories through an ecosystem that delivers leads, and manage the sales process. As an empath and Highly Sensitive Person (HSP), I’m full-on “woo,” I’m imperfect, I’m authentic, and I’m full of integrity. I believe in many things that aren’t mainstream. Because my beliefs are a part of who I am and help me with the work I deliver, I make no attempts to hide them. In fact, there are certain services I purposefully market as intuitive, even though intuitive and professional skills appear to be an uncommon match in the same way intimacy and business are not commonly related. (My next book is about the provocative correlation between business and intimacy.) This uncommon meld of sensitivity and professional expertise creates the exact foundation that makes my services unique. I’m really in tune with other people and I’m ridiculously perceptive and heart-centered. I also approach business with the same love and attention that I share with my family and friends.

Are there any books, apps, podcasts or blogs that help you do your best?
Dancing and hiking are movement meditations that help me dispel the excess energy I pick up as an empath. I’m in love with the tracking on my FitBit to maintain my health and appreciate the 99Walks app for monthly goals and motivation.

I’m a firm believer in continuous learning and make a point to read at least ten pages every day. Three of the best books I’ve read this year are “How to do the Work,” by Dr. Nicole LePera (known as The Holistic Psychologist on social media), “The Buddha and the Badass,” by Vishen Lakihani of Mindvalley, and “Loveability” by Robert Holden, Ph.D.

I’m a student of The Law of Attraction and the process of raising collective consciousness. I frequently listen to YouTube influencers like Abraham-Hicks, Brian Scott of the Reality Revolution, Phil Good, and Kryon.

I’m also a huge fan of the beach, Meet-Ups, Facebook events, and Eventbrite. I’m in love with the variety of activities in SoCal. It seems that no matter how strange your interests, there’s always something to do and you’re never alone in your desires.

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