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Part 3: To my Team H&S: I was Dishonest.

Updated: Feb 14, 2023

I pride myself on honesty. It's ingrained in me. My parents always joked that as long as they asked the right questions, they'd always get the truth. As I got older I took to giving far too much information for the sake of complete transparency. Sometimes all the information isn't needed. But it's who I am. I think it's a bit of a defense mechanism, letting it out in case I did something wrong. Owning my shortcomings so that I can get feedback or learn from another how I can do better. Telling the full truth so that others won't think I'm holding back.

My brother is the same way, I'm constantly telling him he doesn't need to explain himself or over-apologize, or ever apologize to me, but at the same time, I get it. It helps us to be forthcoming. When my family was planning my (surprise) wedding, my father had a broken knee and a potential blood clot. The most important thing to me was his health, and I wanted him to get into the dr asap. While he was on the phone the day before the wedding (I had no idea what was taking place), I sat there while he told the receptionist that he couldn't go to the dr the next day, he said: "my daughter is getting married." I screamed at him, "WHAT??!? Dad just take the appointment! What are you saying, don't LIE!!"

Later at my brother's house, I broke the devastating news to him that our father can actually tell a lie 😂. I remember the look of confusion and anger on his face while I explained the situation, he seemed so upset I felt I had to calm him down "I think it's fine JR, I mean, I think he just really wanted to get an appointment today...but we have to come to terms with the fact that he is capable of lying."

It was unfathomable, this man would go to great lengths to return something that was sent on accident and go back to the grocery store if he found he was undercharged; he has always taken responsibility for his actions, he was and still is a fantastic leader and he taught us how to live in the truth, always. Even if it was hard.

So, he wasn't lying; the look on my brother's face was genuine concern that I had figured out what was happening. I was oblivious, though, so for a few days, I grappled with my dad being a liar 😂 which made this surprise nuptial all the more funny and wonderful. Thank goodness I learned the truth. We don't lie in this family. We face the music and we feel safe knowing that, if nothing else, we are honest and trustworthy. We can believe in one another.

What does this have to do with my message to you? Well, I was dishonest when I resigned from our business and team. I didn't want to be; I wanted to explain everything to all of you. I had to repeat the party line that "I was making the best decision for myself and my family." Stating that meant that while people would still be upset and confused by my decision, it's very hard to argue that someone shouldn't do what is right for them. With this being my stance, I was accused of abandoning my team. You may have felt blind-sided and abandoned and I am so sorry. Having been bound to a contract and fearing a lawsuit, the truth was not safe to tell.

I resigned fully because I was not ok with continuing to benefit financially from a team I could no longer lead. Once I saw I was not in alignment, I was not ok with continuing to earn money from your businesses or orders.

Many of you became a part of my team simply to get discounts on your products. Some of you hoped to find success in the business. Many did earn money, only to become burnt out or unable to continue running parties. I hope that you found some value in our community. Getting to support and work with you all, on any level was such an honor. We had a very special group, and that time will always be one of the greatest of my life. Getting to encourage and support. We did have a beautiful community that I miss very much.

The truth is that I excelled at the business. I worked hard once I saw the potential of it; I believed with all my heart that anyone could do exactly what I had done. I wanted that for everyone. Since it was my experience, I think I oversimplified the business unintentionally. I worked hard; I pushed through difficulty. I was all in, and if I'm being honest, I had a lot of difficult things happening personally; work, supporting others, connecting with my team, and training were an escape for me and a way for me to feel like I was doing good on a higher level. My family is not just honest; we are also workaholics. My escape from life was hard work, and in my mind, encouraging our team and all of you as individuals made me feel better.

What I portrayed as simple was not for most, but it was hard for me to realize that...until it wasn't anymore. I started to realize that I was not happy, that I did not enjoy asking you to place orders even though it was clear the business may no longer be for you. I realized the difficulty in finding new business, and new hosts, and the time involved in running groups and running events when they were no longer simple. I am sorry if, at any point, you placed an order you didn't need for the sake of me getting a promotion. I am sorry that I didn't understand how much that was not in line with my definition of leadership. I am so sorry that my success somehow became the team's success, even though there was no physical distribution of that. I tried to make up for this with giveaways and gifts. It was the only way I knew how to. I don't feel good about it.

I hope that the experience wasn't all bad. I hope you felt supported and not used. It was never my intention to use or take advantage of anyone. I truly wanted everyone to succeed and hit their goals. I didn't understand it could be different until I was presented with a better way, even in my frustrations and growing unhappiness, I still didn't see the lack of leadership in what I was doing.

So when I left, I lied. I did not just leave because this move was best for me. I left because I found something good, healthy, and full of potential for anyone who wanted to grow and start a business. I tell you this not just to try and make things right but because it pains me that many, without the full context of my decision, felt abandoned and confused, left without answers. Led to believe stories and untruths about myself and the company I became a part of. When I told you we had the best business, product, and future, I truly believed it, but I didn't understand enough.

The thing is that once I learned and saw, and understood enough to look at my business objectively, I could no longer tell you that we were in the best place. I could no longer encourage you to push for goals and growth in a place that I didn't feel in alignment and I wasn't sure you could succeed there the way I wanted to believe you could. I left because I couldn't lead with integrity; I left for you. I know that may sound backward. I honored and continue to honor everyone's decision to stay or simply give up the business. I hope that you have gone on to find something that you are proud of and in alignment with.

My leaving wasn't just about me. By saying that over and over, it simply made it ridiculous for those who disagreed with my decision to be able to speak it without having an ulterior motive. How can we really fault someone who makes a better decision for themselves, right? It was a strategic way to hold onto friendships and keep my uplines and sidelines from being upset with me. It didn't work. I was still turned on, and stories were still told, and that's ok with me. What I truly care about is you. I didn't want you to continue doing something you didn't love for ME, and, more than anything, I wanted to lead in real ways. I wanted a business where I could encourage and support others, knowing that they could build something if they wanted to. I wanted the opportunity to grow outside of a product and I wanted others to be able to have a business that could serve as an asset to making their dreams come true, no matter how big or small.

I do not share this to encourage you to leave or start a business with me, especially if you have found balance and love what you are doing in life right now. I say it because it's true, and I wasn't willing to continue lying about this move having only been for me. It was for everyone and I'm sorry I didn't (or couldn't) clarify that. It would have been hard to say without seeming like I was trying to take everyone with me. I want to encourage people to make the right decisions for themselves. I did not want to continue signing people up only to ask them to place orders if they did not succeed in the business. It didn't feel good and I didn't feel like a leader within our team. My friendship and support are always free, and they always will be. Thank you for being a part of that special time in my life and the incredible community we had. Thank you for helping to form my future; I wish I felt as though I had been more of a catalyst for your future. I didn't see it while I was there. I know I led with integrity to the best of my ability with the information and understanding that I had. I promise always to do better.

I love, honor, and miss you all.

Thank you again and I hope you'll be willing to forgive my lack of explanation for so long. I hope you know that I will always support you, and I have never stopped being a part of what we were; it will always be a huge piece of me.

I wish you all the things you dream of having in this life.

I'm always here.

With Love and Gratitude,

Katie Barnett

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