An Interview with Kat Mische Elle
Amber, tell us about yourself. I was raised in a hardworking Midwestern family.
We were always trying to get ahead, but the money made was just enough to pay tomorrow’s bills. I was the first generation in my family to graduate high school, and I was valedictorian. I was determined to change the course I was on in my environment. I came from multiple generations of lower education, with alcoholism also part of the family history.
From the time I was a young child, I was very empathic and sensitive. Somehow, I could sense there was a larger world than I had around me.
I love my parents; we have a strong relationship now, but when I was younger, it wasn’t easy. I couldn’t understand the fighting or the constant stress all around me. I grew older and became very compassionate and could see and understand that my parents did the absolute best they could in their circumstances. They were just humans trying the best options available to them to make things work.
I realized that we are all children walking around in adult bodies. That played into creating who I am today by growing up in those challenges. I wanted to go to college.
I worked multiple jobs so I could put myself through it. This momentum felt good, and I loved being in charge of my life. I signed up to be in every leadership organization I could find. I wanted all the know-how. I was determined.
I like the power I felt by putting myself on a different trajectory to have options. I didn’t know what the path would bring, but I knew I needed to uncover opportunities somehow.
In college, I studied abroad in Kenya, inspired to find a path to see and meet other people and cultures.
I worked throughout college doing a telemarketer sales job. I have joked that in that job, when 99% of the people think that you’re a scammer, and they hang up on you, but you are willing to put yourself still out there and make things happen, you can do anything. I became successful at it, and it helped me build confidence to connect with others. This position allowed me to believe that I could do anything.
My skills increased, leading me to a sales career where I sold TV advertising and started my own business.
But I always had in the back of my mind all the fighting and the chaos my parents went through. They were amazing people who worked hard, but it was a constant struggle. I knew that I didn’t want to feel that way. I didn’t want money challenges in my life, so I unknowingly became a highly sensitive overachiever which allowed me to have an ability to feel deeper into what my clients needed beyond our conversations. And as a young girl, people saw I was always a leader and loudly shared my opinions.
What was it like taking a big jump into the future once you were out in the world?
At first, I suffered from impostor syndrome and fear at every step of the way. I was walking through a belief that I must become bigger than anything around me because no one in my family has ever done what I have done. I didn’t have many mentors, and I didn’t have family guidance.
Even when I drove myself down to college, it was the first time I had driven in a city, and I was first introduced to traffic lights. All roads were new for me, literally and figuratively. I was on shaky emotional ground at first. Nobody from my family came to visit me at college. I couldn’t afford to live in the dorms.
I lived in a house with six guys, worked 30 hours a week waitressing and bartending, and was also deep in my studies. It was very lonely and challenging at times. But I was able to build resilience, knowing that each hard thing I was experiencing was moving me toward providing more freedom and opportunity.
Sometimes these are the most real steps in creating and manifesting future outcomes.
Yes. People can easily be delusional with a glossy social media version of manifestation.
I had to be my biggest cheerleader and have a positive mindset and a belief to keep getting up every day to do the hard things.
But we get to make a choice. I’m all about honoring your human emotions but encouraging logic to be blended with it.
And if a powerful, what I like to call an ‘emotional sneeze’ needs to happen to get it going so you can have that clarity to be okay, do it!
What happened after college?
I met my now husband just after I graduated. He and I started a rock band together with no money, just the love of music. We were both so incredibly broke starting our lives together. Our first piece of furniture was a mattress out of the trash. We could afford an apartment and nothing else. My husband remembers being so embarrassed about having to put the cheapest food at Walmart back on the shelf.
When did your life shift in the direction of where you are today?
Through the experiences I was collecting in my life, I understood how to connect authentically with people, understand their business opportunities, and put that into a brand message.
At the time, it was just something I did. I had a vision of what someone’s brand could become if they positioned it right. I was helping people become successful with the skills I had collected in life, and an unforeseen business for myself came to life. I grew to earn more money than anyone I’d known in my family. I had more than doubled my income in that role and was able to buy a house.
But at the time I felt something within me, a whisper, that was growing into a roar, and it said that more was possible for me. That desire to fully uncover my purpose became the catalyst to start my business. I let my actions be louder than words and told myself to focus on helping one person, one client at a time. To serve from my heart, and to use my strategy from the mission of why I started this business.
Eventually, my business climbed to great levels and then I took the plateau of where my business had arrived and began to rebuild even stronger from there. I was launching now from the lessons I had learned along the way from the people who showed up in my life without the best intentions for me or my business. I unknowingly gave up my power during a period of time that brought me back to a deeper reflection of myself. I am grateful. I climbed out of this funk I found myself standing in and then upward into a stronger and more powerful than ever before reality. I created a path to the next most extraordinary level!
What would be good strong advice for you to give entrepreneurs?
If something feels like a misstep, tune in and listen to yourself. Pay attention to your inner knowing and connect with that. If something doesn’t feel right, if there’s anxiety or stress, look at that. Try not to quickly blame the outside external factors. Sometimes it is an external toxic environment or a misaligned partnership. But I invite people to make that inward journey because all change starts within us.
What is inspiring you now?
I am attracting vibrationally aligned team clients, supporters, and resources. This is the evidence proving that I am on the right track and mindset. Again, I am seeing that I can create whatever I desire to make, and there’s abundance all around to help activate and support that mission. I don’t believe in setbacks or failures anymore. I don’t see things through that lens. In reflection, I now have more evidence of all the times that I came up against a wall or something painful or unexpected and how I moved beyond that, became stronger, and learned and grew. I am now more intentional and present within my micro-moments to help develop the great span of time ahead of me. I’ve stopped robbing myself of the gift of joy. I’m creating for the future.
There is a great quote I like, “We can only trust that part of ourselves that we have revealed to another person and had it validated instead of violated,” by Kurt Wright.
Who are you grateful for?
A dear friend Amy Gannon. She left this world too soon in a helicopter crash with her daughter in Hawaii a few years ago in 2019, which was heartbreaking. She was bold and outspoken. She believed in accessibility and entrepreneurship for women and people of color.
One of the most important moments I carry from my time with her is when I told her about my vision and goals, which included writing a book. When I shared this with her a few years ago, I told her these were my ‘someday’ plans. Amy sat back and listened until I was done sharing, and then she said, “Why can’t you do that now?” I had no damn good answer because everything I wanted to respond with was an excuse.
That powerful statement from Amy had such sound wisdom. And for Amy to lose her life as she did so abruptly reflects how impactful and important it was. And so, I kicked into high gear my life’s ‘now’ instead of the ‘someday.’
Did you finish writing that book?
What is the name of your book?
Unleashed; A Been There, Rocked That Guide to Radical Authenticity, in Life, and Business. u How do people find you? On all social media platforms under my name, Amber Swenor. Or my website, which is soul-seed.com.