Professor Gibson
Thought Bubbles

Fearless Entrepreneurship: My Daughter’s Story of Confidence and Success

“Mom! I offer my perspective, and THAT is worth something.”

My 8-year-old daughter has never spoken truer words. She was answering my prodding questions about the new business she offered at school. Once I found out she wasn’t charging for her services, I certainly didn’t want to be called into the principal’s office; my curiosity turned to why.

The idea was solid—help kids PreK-1st grade gain confidence and learn techniques for climbing the small rock wall at school. The timing was perfect—show up during early care before school started. The name was great–Rocks for Tots. The value was there—you get a certificate, although, as she explained, people didn’t care for the certificates, so she stopped offering them.

But one aspect puzzled me. My daughter is afraid—I mean terrified—of heights. When she was little, she wouldn’t even play on the playground. Her friends just coaxed her to the second level of the play structure.

The rock wall isn’t that tall, it’s short and wide, so maybe that didn’t frighten her. “Have you ever been all the way across the rock wall?” I asked. The answer was an eye-roll followed by the famous, “Mom! I offer my perspective, and THAT is worth something.”

She continued to explain how she gives them tips and encouragement, along with a healthy dose of explaining how she thinks about each individual shape on the wall. The shapes you only stay on for 2 seconds or less are called “temporary rocks.” The ones you spend more time on are called “normal rocks.”

What struck me was her confidence. She saw the value in her wisdom regardless of her ability to complete the task herself.

Shouldn’t we all believe in ourselves like that?

Vincent van Gogh is credited with saying, “If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint,’ then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced.” I am not sure she even has that voice of doubt in her head, but I certainly do.

What if we pushed through fear and doubt and treated it like a to-do list? If my mind tells me I can’t start a business—I start one. If it says I should not speak up about an inequity I witness—I do. If it tells me I am not good enough to speak at an event—I speak anyway.

What if we led with fear and challenged its power in our lives? How would we change? How would we fundamentally be different in a year?

Seeing her believe in herself warms my heart.

She Has Big Plans


when levi says YOU GOT THIS ELSIE!!!! 😭 #kidsbakingchampionship

♬ original sound – Food Network

And she has a business plan for this summer—a lemonade-of-the-month company. Based on the business model of her favorite little entrepreneur, Elsie, who was on the Kids Baking Championship. Elsie started her business at 8, and my daughter thinks she can do the same. “If Elsie did it, I can do it!” has become a common phrase for her.

She wants to offer a unique flavor of lemonade each month, sold by the gallon and delivered on a single Saturday.

She has it all planned out: blood orange, lavender, Maui, honey, butterfly, pina colada, peppermint, cotton candy—and for “a twist,” she might occasionally throw in a limeade.

She said if Elsie can do it—so can she! She already has a notebook full of ideas.

Paint Your Life Lemonade—might be coming to Nashville this summer (just in time for the heat).


By the way, she just walked in and saw me writing this. Her reaction was, and I quote, “Great! Maybe some people who read your blog will LOVE my lemonade business. I know you have a lot of people who read what you write. This is great marketing for me—thanks, Mom!”