When Elva Li left her hometown of Shanghai and moved to Melbourne, she finally stepped into the truth of who she really was, set her soul free and created a new aligned life for herself.
Now she helps visionary female coaches and founders to elevate their brands, and guides them as they embark upon their own journeys of evolution.
Elva and I connected inside a community of like minded business women where we quickly realised we offered compatible services.
Our conversation reveals Elva’s fascinating story and her ongoing evolution in life and business:
Can you describe your business, the type of clients you serve and how you serve them?
With a 10 year background in business advisory and a qualified personal stylist, coach and NLP practitioner, I have combined my creative flair with my business savviness to help visionary female coaches and founders elevate their brand and step into their next level through my unique FemmeBrand system. I integrate holistic brand strategy, creative direction, and mindset work to translate the soul of a person onto screen — so that they can elegantly increase their perceived value, expand their influence, and create more impact.
What motivated you to start your business? How did you get started?
I was that girl playing by everybody else’s rules, playing small in the corporate world and not daring to stand up as who I truly was.
Maybe you can relate too. If you are also a female entrepreneur, you’re someone who has chosen to take the risk of building a business that expresses who you are and allows you to live in your genius zone and do the things you love …. then somewhere along the line you felt like you didn’t fit in the 9-5…
Somewhere along the line, you felt like you were different from everyone else around you. If you’re like me, you know deep inside that there’s something more, there’s something different, there’s something better.
I grew up being a “good girl” for my parents, playing the good “successful” daughter, studying at the top university and then living in the “successful” corporate world. But that life was never meant for me.
Every morning from my office window I would look up at the blue sky, wishing I could grow wings and fly. Every morning I longed for something else. A different world. A beautiful world. One where there was freedom, inside and out.
Eventually, in 2010 I packed my bags, left my hometown, Shanghai, and moved to Australia by myself hoping the world would be different. It wasn’t … because I was the same.
Every day in my office cubicle, I continued playing the good girl. I kept my head down and I worked hard. I played it safe, but deep down I still dreamt of something else.
My life was forever changed when I was introduced to the wonderful world of women entrepreneurs at a business networking event. I saw glimpses of confident beautiful women who were running their own businesses with lifestyles to match. It was like getting a blue Tiffany box from the Universe. I saw the beauty I was looking for.
The beauty of choice.
The beauty of another way.
The beauty of a business as the path to truly living a life that has it all.
I was enlightened. I had a choice. I was no longer willing to accept my desires as just a daydream.
I started building my side hustles, immersing myself with personal development, working with business coaches and mentors, connecting with inspiring people…
I’d be lying if I said building my business and brand was easy. The journey is “beautiful”, but it’s not always “pretty”. I have my doubts, fears and insecurities popping up from time to time. When that happens and things get rough, I always remind myself why I started in the first place.
I started my branding and lifestyle studio because I adore designing beautiful things and nothing brings me more joy than creating a beautiful brand for other female entrepreneurs and helping them turn their dreams into reality, one brand at a time.
I quit my high-paying corporate job as a Chartered Accountant because I wanted to wake up every day with passion and excitement, to do what lights me up and utilise my full potential and talents. To have the flexibility and freedom to do it whenever and wherever I want. To surround myself with like-minded talented and inspiring people.
I dared to be different.
I dared to be courageous.
And I began to evolve into my true self.
What’s been the greatest challenge you’ve had to overcome in your business so far?
Over the years, I have been continuing to peel back the layers of conditioning … the idea that I was to be a pleasant, proper, professional, to look a certain way, act a certain way, and do my business in a certain way…
Everything looked “perfect” from the outside, but I was feeling like a fraud on the inside. The essence of my soul was locked up tight under layers and layers of who I thought I “should” be.
I have evolved. Now I only create and give in the ways that are truly aligned for me. I do the work, charge the rates and receive in the ways that feel true for me.
Now my signature Femme Brand Experience is $20,000 and I work with my soul sister clients who are soul-hearted and have amazing high frequency.
And, I am still evolving – as we always do.
There’s beauty in becoming. Life is lovingly guiding you towards all of the areas that need to be released, removed, and healed… in order for you to step into your highest vision and mission.
Some of these lessons will come up again; and I believe that they do, when we need to deepen our relationship ourselves and to embody the “next level” – a philosophy that now guides my whole business.
There are still times I feel my business and brand no longer aligns with who I’ve become; like I know I am meant for more but have no idea what “more” looks like. But now I know how to bring myself back to alignment and constantly step into my “next level”. Now I know that the only way to receive what I desire is to be who I truly am.
If you are on this journey of evolving and stepping into your next level, I see you. I am on this journey with you.
One of my favourite rituals I use to bring myself to alignment every day is my “Goddess Hour” every morning. I learnt it from my business mentor Victoria Fox and now I do it every day.
I start my mornings of 1 hour to myself each day, just for me. It is a time to feel my vision coming to life, to move, create, go inwards and connect with the magic of my body. This hour sets the energy for my entire day, and is a devotional practice. I do whatever creative and feminine practices I like in this time: art, meditation, yoga, dance, writing, walking, time in nature.
It’s not a time for consuming content from the outside world such as the internet, social media messages, or books — it’s a time to express what is in me. I dance at least one song every morning to allow my body to move me. Embodiment (being in our body and particularly our womb space) is an important part of feminine-led living.
What do you love about running your business?
I am so grateful and excited about sharing my gifts with the world by helping my soul sister clients not only create, but to live their brand with soulful femme alignment, shine bright as who they really are and create real impact, income and freedom! The world is a better place, because you are in it! ❤
I love bringing beauty and love to the world. As I consistently step into my next level, I invite my soul sisters along the way. To transform my own life and their lives at the same time and receive love, abundance, joy along the way.
Is there anyone you admire who has influenced what you do or how you work?
I follow Rebecca Campbell, Amanda Frances, and Tara Marino the most for inspiration.
I love “Light is the new black” by Rebecca Cambell. The book inspired me to answer my soul’s highest calling, keep my creations potent, align my business to my soul and scale it in a way that is sustainable, so I can create a life’s work, not a season.
Do you have any go-to tools – software, apps or other technology that help you (or your clients) in your business?
● Google G suite: professional email.
● Acuity Scheduling: scheduling my appointments.
● Asana: project and team management.
● Screenflow: Make videos, record my screen.
● Wave: Billing and accounting.
● Squarespace: website.
● Adobe Creative Cloud: design software.
● Wistia: Video Hosting for Business: video hosting.
● Planoly: Instagram scheduling and posting.
● Zoom: online meetings.
● Dropbox: sharing files
Does your business have a social enterprise aspect to it?
I co-founded Impact the Future Giving Circle, which is a part of a Charity Fund.
How do you like to spend your time when you’re not working?
Spending time with my loved ones, walking in nature, painting, and dancing.
Where can people connect with Elva Li online and learn more about working with you?
You can connect with me on:
My website: https://www.elvali.com/
Take my quiz here and discover your FemmeBrand Archetype.