Be grateful for what you have, and you will end up having more. Have a heart of gratitude. Learn to listen to many and trust few. Keep your circle small. Sometimes circles decrease in size but increase in value. When you start to eliminate those in your life that do not build you up, praise you, encourage you, and support you, then you win.
As a part of my interview series with popular culture stars, I had the pleasure of interviewing Shelly Hart. Shelly is the best selling author of Unbreakable Faith, founder of Giving Hart a non-profit 501c3, show host of Hart to Heart with Shelly and the owner and licensed real estate broker of Hart Realty. Shelly’s caring heart is a huge part of who she is from sharing her story of having endured over twenty-three years of adversity, to providing a backpack ministry so children will not go hungry over the weekends. She uses her show as a platform for guests to share their stories of inspiration. Shelly assists her clients in transitioning from one season to the next in their lives. Shelly says; “It is an honor that people entrust their biggest decisions with me.”
Thank you so much for joining us Shelly! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?
Enduring over twenty-three years of adversity, has taught me a lot about perseverance. It was after my husband left the state of North Carolina and went to Iowa, to await his second liver transplant, that I started finding myself. Once I found myself and had self love, I let everything that was inside of me go. I took off. I started my real estate firm, Hart Realty, wrote my book, Unbreakable Faith, started my non-profit, Giving Hart and host Hart to Heart with Shelly. I always had this amazing entrepreneur spirit inside of me. I wanted to work my own hours and be my own boss.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started this career?
The most interesting story that has happened to me since I started my career as an entrepreneur is learning who to trust. I am a very trustworthy person and have found that others who want you to be involved with their organization are not always legit.
Once someone breaks their trust with me, its very hard to gain that trust back. You also have to learn to budget your money well.
Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?
The funniest mistake I learned from when starting out in the real estate business was do not work with anyone unless they are pre-approved. When you receive your real estate license you are so excited to go out and help someone find a home. It’s your passion. Well, I did just that. I had my first clients and they wanted to go out and look at waterfront property. I was like yes! If these clients purchase this will be my first big real estate commission. Little did I know or think to ask was, “Are you pre-approved?”
I spent an entire day with this couple. We stopped and had lunch together then continued on with their home search.
What a waste of time. I found out later they were not pre-approved nor did they qualify for what we were looking at, they just wanted to look at all the beautiful homes.
I can look back and laugh now, but after I learned what had happened, I was upset with myself for not knowing any better. Lesson learned is unless your client is pre-approved do not waste your time looking at properties they can’t even afford. Once you have that pre-approval letter you will know the price range and then can start the search.
What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?
The projects I am currently working on include group coaching sessions. I will specialize in helping women overcome adversity by teaching them the tools I have learned…through my own personal experiences. My message is designed to inspire others to become the best version of themselves that they can be. My engaging message of Unbreakable Faith combined with unstoppable courage will leave my clients inspired and encouraged.
Giving Hart has a waiting list of one-hundred kids. I am working on ways to bring in financial donations. The cost is $250 per child and provides six meals every weekend for the entire school year.
I enjoy interviewing guests on my show Hart to Heart with Shelly and find it to be inspiring. I am interested in starting my own network show or hosting a show.
Who are some of the most interesting people you have interacted with? What was that like? Do you have any stories?
Some of the most interesting people I have interacted with have been Micheal Jordan, NBA Players, Rapper Nelly and Les Brown.
I love the game of basketball and attend Charlotte Hornets basketball games.
When you are around celebrities and professional athletes I have learned they don’t like people falling at them. They don’t want you asking for an autograph or their photos taken. They want to be treated as a normal human being.
Yes, I have stories. Hanging out with Micheal Jordan was surreal. I mean it’s Micheal Jordan. He is so down to earth and a great guy. Nelly is a Charlotte Hornets fan. After a basketball game, my friends and I went bowling with Nelly. Nelly is an excellent bowler and wins most of the games.
The Charlotte Hornets were playing against Orlando Magic. After the game was over I was hanging out with friends at the Ritz Carlton. As I was walking through, I was approached by a table of gentleman asking me if I would like to have a drink. I said sure. I then started talking with the table of guys and found out it was the Orlando Magic team. They asked my friends and I if we would like to go to the club with them. We said, “yes!” Going to the club with the Orlando Magic team was an experience.
Meeting Les Brown and hanging out with him was life changing. He speaks truth and life into you like no other. He is inspirational.
Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?
The tips I would recommend to my colleagues in my industry to help them thrive and not “burn out” would be to always take time for yourself. When you come from a place of having your cup empty, you cannot serve those around you. You want to know yourself. This is essential. So when times get tough you know what drives you. Keep a clear vision and know where you are heading. Stay focused. Always be grateful. Have a heart full of gratitude.
You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
I would love to start a movement with the education system in America. The school system needs to have real life teaching in schools. Kids today are bored and are hating school. When a teenager graduates from high school and goes out into the real world, they have no idea what to do. Educational classes teaching life skills and entrepreneurship would be high on my list.
I believe teens today are not being heard. I feel teens need to have people speak life into them. To let kids know its okay if you don’t know what you want to do for the rest of your life when you are in high school. Kids today are under so much pressure and stress. Need to prevent teen suicide.
Social media has taken over how kids communicate with each other. Kids will say anything behind a screen but would never say face to face. The bullying needs to stop. Kids need to feel and know they are loved.
What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.
The five things I wished someone had told me when I became an entrepreneur are:
1. You never know what life will throw at you. I have learned that everything you go through will grow you. Be the best you that you can be. Stay focused on the positives and never look back unless you are looking back to see how far you have come. Never regret anything that has happened in your life. It cannot be changed. Take it as a lesson learned and move on.
2. The essence of everything successful is integrity. Be honest and have strong moral principles in business and in life. Stay connected to the ones that lift you up. Always aim to be the greatest version of yourself. Choose things that will help you achieve that. Remember, how you make others feel about themselves says a lot about you. Know your worth and never settle for less.
3. Be grateful for what you have, and you will end up having more. Have a heart of gratitude. Learn to listen to many and trust few. Keep your circle small. Sometimes circles decrease in size but increase in value. When you start to eliminate those in your life that do not build you up, praise you, encourage you, and support you, then you win.
4. Don’t make assumptions. People like to make assumptions about everything. When you do this you believe what you are assuming is the truth. Then we put blame on that person and react, when what we are believing to be true may not even be happening. We only see what we want to see and hear what we want to hear. If you don’t understand something it is best you ask and be clear than making an assumption. With clear communication, all your relationships will change.
5. Entrepreneurship is not easy. Starting your own business is not easy. No one sees what it takes to be successful. They see all the glamour and fun life you have. They don’t see the hard work, extended work hours, discipline, rejections, criticism, risks, changes, dedication, and passion it takes. Success is on you. The goal isn’t more money. The goal is living life on your own terms.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
My favorite life lesson quote is “Two things define us. Our patience when we have nothing and our attitude when we have everything.”
This quote was relevant at the time in my life when our family of four had sixty-nine cents in our bank account. My husband had lost his job due to illness and was awaiting his second liver transplant. I was a stay-at-home mom studying for my real estate license when this all took place. You realize how to have patience and lots of trust and faith in God.
When the times changed and we had everything we needed, you need to be grateful. Having a heart of gratitude brings more goodness into your world. Everything you have can be taken away so quickly.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
There is a particular person I am grateful for who has helped me get to where I am today. That person is Les Brown. If it wasn’t for the content Les put out on social media, I would not have had someone to mentor me in getting through the hard times in my life. I would listen daily to his inspirational content. I would be told, “I have greatness within me.” “Your past does not define you.” “Too many of us are not living our dreams because we are living our fears.” “Other people’s opinions of you does not have to become your reality.” And so many more.
The day I met Les Brown in person, he invited me to come back to his hotel after our event. We had hours of discussion about my story. Les said, “you have a powerful story and people need to hear it.” He spoke life into me. It was in that moment, I became aware of my potential.
Some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might see this. 🙂
The person whom I would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with would be Ellen DeGeneres. There are three reasons. The first reason is I would love to have my own show or be a talk show host. I have a love for hearing peoples stories and inspiring others. I would love for Ellen to give me some insights on what makes for a successful show and learn about her story. The second reason is her heart for charity. I have a 501c3 non-profit Giving Hart. Having the opportunity to talk with Ellen about fund raising and have her help get my charity name to the public would be an honor. I want to help the one-hundred children currently on our waiting list and start expanding into schools outside of our community.
The third reason is I have a heart-warming story I want to share with Ellen. I want to share with her my story of going through twenty-three years of adversity and how I am still fighting through today. How I never gave up. My husband just had his third liver transplant and how he is a living miracle. I was told twice I was going to lose him while he was in transplant surgery. The additional nine surgeries after the two transplants. Raising two beautiful daughters all on my own in a two parent home. I give and take care of others. I have finally found self love. Ellen, I would be honored to have a private breakfast or lunch with you.
How can our readers follow you on social media?
You can follow me on Social Media…
Facebook: Shelly Hart, Hart to Heart with Shelly
Linkedin: Shelly Hart
Non-Profit Website: www.givinghart.org