I saw her posts on my Facebook feed for the last several months. I don’t know her in real life. She’s a friend of a friend. Each time I saw her posts, something said, reach out; you should know her.
Nudges. We get these nudges. I believe they come from God, but I think everyone gets the nudges, whatever you believe. The question is, “Do we respond to them.”
She is a business owner, a single mom, and loves great food and wine. I know this from her posts on social media. Finally, I sent the message. “Hey, if you want to grab dinner and talk about business, let me know.”
An immediate response, “YES!”
Look, we’re all still a little bit of that 7th grader afraid we won’t get invited to the party, so reaching out to a stranger takes gut and gumption. I’m sharing this story to encourage you to move past the uncertainty and reach out.
I met Abby Ripberger for a 6pm dinner reservation at 9th Street Bistro, where I’ve been trying to get a reservation for months! It turns out she’s friends with the owners, already making this a win-win situation.
We left the restaurant at 10pm! The food was incredible, the atmosphere warm, the conversation funny, and inspiring.
Abby is an entrepreneur; she runs a few businesses, including a food truck called The Love Bug in Tipton, Indiana. She’s not read my book, but she’s a perfect example of what “Writing Your Own Story” looks like. She’s done college, business, corporate work, management, and bought a trailer and turned it into a food truck. She’s written many chapters in her story already.
She’s also faced massive challenges in life, personally and professionally. Each time she rises up and thrives in a new chapter. Last night, we were able to look at her story and her current business model and see the deeper meaning behind it all.
Abby cares deeply about empowering women, especially women in business. She received texts from friends and family all night, asking for advice and help. People trust Abby because she cares, and she also doesn’t take any shit. As a single mom, she knows what every minute of her time is worth, how she spends it matters.
Abby believes that women are at the heart of the community. If she can help build their confidence, inspire them, and give them practical advice, they can elevate their small community in beautiful ways that serve community and commerce.
This is the Age of Humanity I write about in my book, Write Your Own Story – Three Keys to Rise & Thrive as a Badass Career Woman. Abby gets it; she’s doing it. And as the book states, Nobody Thrives Alone. I was able to help Abby see her business and her story for the much deeper meaning and purpose that it provides.
Today she’s making soup and delivering it to be sold in a fellow business owner’s shop, East Street Provisions. We get up every day and do the work, chop the vegetables, help with homework and “all the things”. It’s important while we’re doing the work, we know how those things are part of a much bigger picture. We stand taller in our story because our story matters.
I’m so glad I followed the nudge to reach out and meet Abby. Our stories are now connected. It’s gonna be a blast to see where her following chapters take her and her community. We’re already planning a summer event together. Stay tuned; it’s gonna be a blast because badass women, food, wine, and a love of community are a recipe for greatness.