What About the Money Honey? How I Fund My Dreams

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Dream chasing is a precarious thing when you channel your inner Evel Knievel and take the equivalent of a flaming motorcycle leap over an ocean full of hybrid piranasharks – because that’s what it feels like when you get creative with how to pay the bills.

I did this on January 1, 2015 when after months of (exciting) labor, Hiya Tootsie! was finally born in all her ass kicking, dream making glory.

Previously, I spent nine years in full-time ministry. For six of those years, I worked to rehabilitate women in the porn industry and men addicted to porn, educate the public on the exceedingly prevalent sexual, physical, mental, and emotional violence and trauma on and off set, law makers on the unregulated workplace, and health officials on the rampant disease inherent to the industry. I also spent a lot of time working with women dealing with substance addictions and mental illness, and as an ordained chaplain, was a spiritual mentor to everyone I encountered along the way.

During these nine years, I worked under various nonprofits where I raised my own mini salary to pay the bills, so doing out-of-the-box work to earn out-of-the-box income is nothing new to me. This lifestyle is admittedly less than stable and in a very real way is like having a second full-time job just to ensure the funds will come in. But the trade off is that I get to live on my own terms, do work that matters to me and creates change in other people’s lives, and have complete freedom over my time. Basically, I get to be Boss. Yes ma’am!

When the effects from my previous career became way too much to handle (oh hey tramarama!), I called it quits and decided to try something brand new.

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I have my degree in Pro Writing so blogging seemed like a no-brainer – especially after I learned that it’s possible to make a living with it. I love writing and adding value to people’s lives, and because I’m an ENFP and get high off of ideas and new experiences, thought, “Yes! Writing! And why not create helpful things to sell and try my hand at business too? I know nothing about business, but who cares! I could be an entrepreneur! Why not? Hooray! New! Fun! Happy! Woohoo!”

The thing about starting a business of course is that the money does not flow like milk and honey from the get. That’s just what people tell you when they’re trying to sell you something. Realistically, it takes at least a couple years to earn a sustainable living. So right now, I hustle, learn, diversify, slowly build, enjoy the ride, and try, try, try.

I knew this adventure would be challenging, so I planned early on to get creative, remain celebratory that there are totally ways to make it work, and went all in. I take freelance editing gigs here and there when I can find them, pray my head off, and rely on out-of-the-box means that look a whole lot like a village of likeminded people getting behind a vision.

I’m an all or nothing chick, so when I found out about Patreon, I basically felt like the Heavens opened up and the angels themselves began serenading me by name. 

Patreon is a crowd funding site like Kickstarter except rather than being for one huge project, it’s designed specifically to allow artists to make an ongoing living doing their craft. Basically, people who dig a creator’s work become “patrons” and financially support getting the work out into the world (and subsequently support the creator). They do so on either a per project or monthly basis, depending on how the creator sets up their page.

Big name folks like Amanda Palmer (musician and New York Times bestselling author of The Art of Asking), Pentatonix (a cappella super group), and Walk Off The Earth (the band that did that five people on one guitar cover of Goyte’s Somebody That I Used to Know) all use Patreon to support their work. There are also tons of bloggers, songwriters, artists, podcasters, and YouTubers on the platform.

Heather-Jabornik-Hiya-Tootsie-Patreon-3I created my own magical Patreon page (which you should totally check out, fall in love with, and join – WINK) back in December of 2014 to prepare for Hiya Tootsie’s launch on January 1st. Over the last 10 months, my ridiculously incredible team has single-handedly allowed me to push this dream chasing work out to all of you every single week.

We call ourselves Team Tootsie! and our bottom line is that we believe in the magnitude, importance, and world changing capacity of broads just like you and me, our sisters, best friends, coworkers, and classmates, chasing down our dreams.

But you guys, here’s the thing. I don’t do woo woo and I don’t do fluff. I can appreciate it, but it’s not me. And while I get that this idea of dream chasing can sound hella fluffy woo woo, allow me to succinctly specify why it’s not:

1. I believe (on a spiritual gangster level here, people) that our gifts, talents, and dreams are divinely inspired and given to us. This is deep.

2. I believe we’re really, really, really good at not using our gifts and talents and are basic professionals at letting our dreams die within us. This is bullshit.

3. I believe that when we flip the bird at that noise, especially as women, and ACT on what’s in us to do, momentous change occurs in us, the people in our sphere of influence, and ultimately, the world. This is the friggin truth.

I’ve personally seen change happen over and over and over again.

Remember that previous nine year career I mentioned? I’ve walked alongside countless women for years who revamped their entire lives and started positively impacting other people’s lives when they finally understood who they were and what they were uniquely gifted to do.

And remember how I’m a chaplain? It’s kind of like character street cred. While I don’t spiritually guide people as a job anymore, I love and follow the radical, historical Jesus and refuse to get caught up in caricaturized religious bullshit. So what I’m saying is that I’m not going to freaking lie to you here. I’ve been watching the work work for years.

Heather-Jabornik-Hiya-Tootsie-Patreon-1This dream chasing business is life-changing stuff that works. It’s important.

I’ve dedicated my professional life to making sure you know you have what it takes to make it happen. And you know what? I do this for me too. I do this because I believe my dreams matter and I finally believe that it’s just as important for me to show up and kick ass as it is to have the privilege to support you in the dream chasing, ass kicking arena.

When women do what is in us to do, when we go hard after our dreams, insist on kicking ass, and stand on the truth that what we have to offer matters, everything changes.

Do you have any idea how obnoxiously thrilled I’d be to have you join me in this work to shake shit up and change the landscape of women’s lives all over the globe?

We’ve got women and men on Team Tootsie! giving anywhere from 2 bucks to 200 bucks every single month and it’s because of them that Hiya Tootsie! exists in the capacity that it does. It’s because of them that I can focus my time and attention on proving to, teaching, and raucously cheering on all of you to make your dreams happen.

Remember for yourself that anything is possible. You have permission to do what is in you to do. There’s no one else on the planet like you who can offer the rest of the world exactly what lives behind your gorgeous eyes. You are unique. You are one of a kind. Darling, you’re the only you we’ve got. If you’ve got no one else in your life jumping up and down for you and shrieking your name in wild, joyous abandon, cast those pretty peepers over this way. I gotchoo. I believe in you. I’m here for you.

I work so that you’ll be great. So join me already, would ya? Let’s do this thing together. It’s fun, fulfilling, and I give you free crap!

I want to give a loud and clear shout out, infinite thank you’s, and love bombs galore to my team both present and past. Ansley, Taily, Jordan, Ryan, Erika, Marilyn, Sean, Colette, Christen, Olivia, Beth, Charissa, Mandy, Sarah, Laurel, Greg, Ethan, Melanie & Steve, Julie & Jeff, Tom & Cathy, Colleen, Abner, Kath, Courtney, Juliane, Curt & Linda, Karrie, Kayla, Ryan, and Rachel, thank you for being in this work with me. You’re the heartbeat of this dream chasing movement for offbeat broads and I owe you my deepest gratitude and most heartfelt butt slaps. You’re the freakin best. I love you!


Click here to join Team Tootsie!
ya beautiful badass!

Images from: Tiffany Fulmer


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