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Elizabeth Barbour, M. Ed.
The Revitalized Business Woman
Missouri City (Houston), Texas

Call Today: (281) 778-7298

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Six Simple Strategies to Expand Your Network

Welcome to all of our new subscribers this week! Dozens of folks have joined the Revitalized Business Woman Community this week. So glad to have you all with us!

Whether you own a business or are a professional, it’s important to expand and cultivate your network. Whether you are looking for clients, colleagues, friends or heck, even a love interest – I met my husband networking! – networking is a wonderful way to practice self-care by surrounding yourself with like-minded people. Having a tribe of people that you can count on for support both personally and professionally is critical for success in business and in life.

There is not just one right way to network. It’s not a one-size-fits-all proposition. Extroverts will love big events with lots of people and introverts will thrive in smaller settings or 1:1 interactions. You’ve got to find the style and approach that works for you.

  1. If you like structure and accountability and want to get to know a few people for the long-term, consider BNI (Business Network International) or Toastmasters. These groups meet weekly, you often have a specific role to play and if you are absent, it will be noticed! BNI is a referrals group which means the specific focus is on sharing qualified potential business with one another. Toastmasters is a special interest club that meets weekly where members have the opportunity to improve their public speaking skills.
  2. If you like flexibility, meeting new people and you want to connect with a wide variety of people in different industries, your local Chamber of Commerce is a great place to go. They have choices of morning mixers, afternoon gatherings, workshops and more.
  3. If you like the idea of networking with women only, find a group that feels like a good fit. Some meet weekly, monthly or quarterly. Some national groups are ABWA (American Business Women’s Association), BPW (Business & Professional Women) and NAWBO (National Association of Women Business Owners). In Houston, I’ve really enjoyed being part of the Executive Moms Society and I’ve started my own group called Sienna Women in Business. Ask your friends where they go to network and see if you can tag along.  
  4. If you want to meet others in your same profession, find a group in town or start your own. Making friends and establishing connections with others in your field is really a wise thing to do. It gives you other people to serve as a sounding board who understand the issues that you face in your business. It also allows you to build a referral list. If you get too busy with your business or a potential client appears who you can’t help, you’ve got a list of professionals that you can send referrals to. When you help others by giving them good referrals, they’ll remember you in a positive light.  
  5. If you don’t love group settings and you prefer talking to an individual person for a length of time, consider initiating a series of 1:1 lunches or coffees. Make a list of 10 people that you’d like to get to know better, call and ask them to go to lunch with you with the intention of getting to know each other better. You can structure your visit so that you both have 30 min to talk about yourself and your business and your dreams and goals. At the end of every meeting, ask the person “Who else do you know that you think I should meet?”  
  6. If you don’t like the idea of traditional networking at all, what about joining a club or group that is of personal interest to you? If you like the outdoors, join a hiking club. If you are service-minded, join Rotary or Lions Club or Kiwanis. If your passions are animals or the environment or children, do some volunteer work with organizations that support those causes. You’ll meet like- minded people and probably have a pretty good time!

Remember, networking is the starting point for building relationships which ultimately leads to increased business success and personal happiness. Have realistic expectations about what networking can do for you. If you put yourself out there and are open to opportunities and help others when they need help, chances are good that your positive deeds will be rewarded.

And speaking of networks…

If you are a professional or entrepreneurial woman who is struggling to balance your roles in work and in life (who isn’t?!), it’s always helpful to build friendships with other women who are in the same boat! Check out my new virtual coaching program here à  RevitalizeU: 8 Weeks to Revitalization! And please feel free to email me if you have any questions at all! We start at the end of September.

Revitalization Tip: Take stock of your current networking practices. What’s working for you? What’s not? What’s missing? What can you do differently? Try making one or two intentional changes in the next month and see what exciting things happen. Tell me about it.

Here's to Networking!



Dr. Wayne Dyer + A Personal Story + An Invitation for You

If you hang out in the personal development world at all, chances are good you are familiar with the work of Dr. Wayne Dyer. He was a self-help guru beloved by millions, author of more than 30 books and a big champion of self-love, self-respect and living according to the divine laws of the universe. He passed away this weekend leaving a rich legacy. 

When I heard that he had died, the first thing I did was walk to my book shelf and pull out my two copies of The Power of Intention. (I have the original boring print version but then also bought the pretty, illustrated version because it just felt so much better to hold in my hands! ) I spent time perusing the book, one of my favorites when it came out in 2004, and reread all of the things I had starred or underlined.

The chapter that speaks to me the most, however, is the one that most directly relates to my work as a passionate advocate for self-care. Chapter 7 is titled: It is My Intention to: Respect Myself at All Times.

When I read that, I got goose bumps because that is one of the cornerstones of my work. Maybe it’s because I’m now in my mid-40s and have gotten to that stage of life where I don’t worry as much what other people think about me. But it wasn’t always that way. 


My Journey to Self-Care and Self-Respect

Many moons ago, I was saying yes to everyone else and ignoring my own inner voice that was begging and pleading for help and I said “Shush. I have no time for you.” I was working 70 hours a week in a job I hated, in complete denial that my (first) marriage was slowly disintegrating before my eyes and my health was in major crisis.

The Universe decided to put me out of my misery and it all came to a halt - fast. My then-husband asked me for a divorce, I quit my job and within 6 weeks relocated to a new city where I had only one friend. Turns out, that city was the amazing Asheville, North Carolina which is a powerful place for healing and transformation and that is where I embarked on my Journey of Self Care and ultimately Self-Respect.

When I arrived, I sat on my mountaintop and cried for three months. There were days when I forced myself to go to the grocery store just to buy a loaf of bread so that I would have to talk to the checkout clerk. It was a dark, dark period in my life but it was filled with tremendous gifts.


The greatest gift of all? I started listening to myself. My own inner voice. My wise sage. (Or the voice of God. Same thing in my book.)

I completely overhauled my life. Day by day. Bit by bit. Step by step. And one day, I woke up and said “OK, I can do this.” And I got back out into the world and into life. And the magic that ensued is, well, pretty darned magical!

Within a year I built a sustainable coaching practice where I was paying my rent and they didn’t repossess my car. I developed an incredible circle of friends and I started going to church. I read books, took naps and journaled my anger, my grief and my dreams for the future. I went for long hikes and went out on dates where we would take picnics up on the Blue Ridge Parkway and watch the moon rise.

Within the second year, I met the man who would become my now husband and father of our child. I knew on our second date that he was "The One”. I called my girlfriends and told them so and they said “No way! How do you know? You just met him? And you just started dating again?!” and I said “I just know.”

I had cleared the cobwebs through remarkable self-care. And I was able to hear that sweet, still voice inside and I knew. I knew that he was the one. I knew the timing was right. I knew that my life was on track again. I had learned to love and respect myself again.


An Invitation for You

I’m launching a shiny brand new 8-week coaching program September 23rd to help you revitalize your life.

If you....

Have been putting everyone else’s needs first

Are feeling burned out, stressed out or exhausted

Have problems with your health, finances or relationships

Are living your life on autopilot and not tuning in to your intention or intuition

Struggle to balance the demands of ALL of your responsibilities

…you may want to consider joining us.

I want to help you reclaim your voice, your power, your “me-time” and your self-love and self-respect!

Click here to learn more: RevitalizeU: 8 Weeks to Revitalization


Here's to Self-Respect and Self-Revitalization!



P.S. If you get a hunch that a friend or colleague might need some support in revitalizing their life right now, please give them the gift of forwarding this email. Trust your intuition…


15 GEMS From 15 Years in Business

As August comes to a close and I wrap up my #GratitudeFestival15, it’s been a fun walk down memory lane reflecting on the clients, colleagues and coaches who have helped shape the course of my work in the world. Entrepreneurship is not for the faint of heart. It was the riskiest career move that I ever made but it was the smartest life choice that I ever made too! As my clients know, I always end sessions with the question “What’s your GEM?” So today, here are a few gems from my 15 years in business. Thanks for being along for the ride!

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