The Detour Is the Path

One of the principles we talk about in our training programs is that “the Detour IS the Path”. We learned this principle from one of our own mentors, Layne Gneiting, who is also a guest presenter in my Achieving the Impossible program. It means is that when you embark on a hero’s journey to achieve a specific intention, there will be detours and roadblocks along the way. Rarely does the process play out exactly as originally planned. But when you face a roadblock or detour, it’s not for nothing. Those obstacles show up to teach us something that we will likely need to know or understand later on the path. They provide opportunities to strengthen atrophied muscles, or give us clues or tokens that will be needed at a future juncture.

So that’s it: The detour IS the path.

When you feel like the path is taking you somewhere other than what you intended, it’s not always a sign that you’re off track, it’s often a sign that you are being divinely guided to gather all the wisdom and treasure that the Lord has available for you along the way. He knows how to get you where you want to go – with ALL the help and resources you will need – even better than you do. So instead of bemoaning the detour, we would do better to embrace it.

Following is an update from Mindset Mastery Honors Graduate Lindsey Partridge, as she explains how this “detour is the path” principle has played out for her since her graduation.

She writes:

When I was taking the Mindset Mastery course, my end goal was always that I would get a home. We had been renting since we started on career shifts with my husband’s work back in January of 2014. We’ve been looking forward with great anticipation for the time we would own a house again.

With his business growing steadily, and seeing how the Lord was guiding and blessing us, plus really learning for myself the truthfulness of these laws and my role in creating my future, I really had started to dream much bigger in regard to that home.

I wasn’t tied to how that dream would come to pass. Of course, I had my suspicions, but was open to whatever direction we were inspired to go. Things that would have brought fear and/or doubt before–like a ridiculous swelling in the housing market–didn’t phase me. I’d seen miracles, many, many miracles over the past eight years, there was no reason to think the Lord would leave us now. I expected abundance and prosperity. I expected my dream home.

My final goal during Mindset Mastery was to complete an online photography course. I had received inspiration to take a specific photography business course from some photographers I follow. Here’s the thing, though… I’m not really a photographer.

So when the idea came to take photography lessons, though it did give me a moment of pause, I did act. I took the lessons with faith. I didn’t know why. Was I going to have a photography business? I already had a business I could grow. I am actually a singer and voice teacher. I’ve had my own business teaching voice lessons. I had wondered if the material in their photography course could be applicable to my voice studio. (Business is business, right??) So I reached out to them and asked. I was told directly that the course would not transfer to a voice studio.

So, why start another business? and with a skill I’m not as secure in? When I got the email for the bi-annual photography business course being offered in October 2021, the thought was, “not now, but in the spring.” I was a bit surprised. I do enjoy photography. I loved what I had seen from these mentors through their social media and newsletter. But the inspiration was clear. Who’s to say that I wasn’t a photographer in the rough, and just needed to practice to unleash her? I was willing to go wherever I was led.

Not until spring

I had been drawn to these photographers, and followed them on social media for a while. They just had such a good spirit about them. I wanted to learn from them, but didn’t see how I could justify spending money on their courses when it wasn’t my line of work. There were other things I needed to focus my money and energy on, especially when we had been struggling financially.

With the thought of taking this photography business course “in the spring,” I had several holes that needed to be filled in my mind. If I was going to take this course, I needed to learn how to be a better photographer. I needed to practice photography more. Should I stop teaching voice? Could I possibly do both? And rebrand to Lindsey Partridge Studio, having it apply to either photography or voice? Did I even want to have a photography business??

My next step

As I pondered, wrote, and prayed about these questions, I felt a distinct non-answer about the photography business part. It was like the answer was, ‘you’ll know in time.’ OK. So, I just moved forward with what I felt was the next step, which was sharpening my photography skills. I figured I could learn some photography skills from them now, and then take their business course in the spring.

I was pleased with what I was learning. I could see my photography skills improve, and my eye, especially. And I was right about the energy of these photography mentors. They were full of joy and love and purpose and faith. I really resonated with them. I set some high goals to complete the courses quickly, and practice daily with my skills. I was doing well.

I also faced some imposter syndrome stuff with calling myself a photographer. That was really, really magnified when I went to a camera store and spoke with the sales associates, all of whom had side-gigs as photographers. In fact, my motivation and desire really waned after that encounter. I did the mental work to push through, and set a goal for myself to take some much-needed family pictures of my in-laws when we were in town for Thanksgiving.

A wrench was thrown in the Thanksgiving plans when we learned my brother-in-law’s daughter got COVID. Can’t very well do family pictures if we’re missing a family! Without their support, it was difficult to rally the remainder of the family to dress for pictures, let alone pose for them. I did manage to get a few pictures shot of a few of the family. The shoot didn’t turn out like I wanted it to, but I was pleased that I was capturing images of people who’d not sat for pictures for a long time. I was doing important work for our family history with my camera, and that mattered.

Where’d the passion go?

I came home, edited the pictures, and then didn’t pick up my camera until Christmas Day, and then again, not for months. December had me preparing a lot for our church’s Christmas service, and then January had me hyper-focused on preparing for a 10K, my first real race ever. (It was a big deal as a person who never considered herself an athlete, let alone a runner.) The thing was though, I didn’t seem to miss my camera. I didn’t feel drawn to pick it up. I didn’t feel like prioritizing it, and I felt like that lack of feeling was telling me something, too.

What I was starting to spend my energy on was some really great group lessons for my voice studio. I was loving doing the research, and putting these presentations together. I was excited about sharing this information with my students, and seeing how knowing this stuff would help them achieve their goals with their voices.

There was so much information that I had even created a three-part series of presentations. Working on these presentations was forcing me to learn things deeper that I had only felt I understood on the surface before. I was getting better myself! It was exciting, and nice to have a focus. When I finally shared them with my students, their responses were so encouraging!

One of my students, Alyssa–she was not only studying voice, but I was mentoring her to build her own voice studio, and she had begun teaching voice to several students herself–shared with me her thought that the presentations I was creating would be great content for an online course. That I could get some passive income through it. (Did she say those magic words, “passive income”?) She was really good at social media stuff, and had taken several courses tied to it herself. It wasn’t my forte at all, but I was excited and intrigued by the idea of having my own online course. I didn’t know how or when that would come about, but I definitely didn’t reject that beautiful idea! Someday. When it’s the right time.

Should I still go through with it?

And then the inevitable email came announcing that the photography business course was opening for enrollment again. My photography had taken a back seat. My responsibilities with church, family, and my voice business were needing my attention. But the email came announcing the photography business course again. The spring had come. It was the time I felt inspired about, all the way back in October. And what was I going to do with that now? I hadn’t picked up my camera in months! And I hadn’t felt a desire to. I had felt a desire to breathe some life into my voice studio. So now what?! Was I going to invest money in this course when I could plainly see that I really wasn’t being a photographer, let alone going to have a photography business?

I could easily have let it pass by. It made sense to let it pass by. But I wanted to follow through with my inspiration, in spite of the logic that said to not. I prayed about it. And, I registered for the course. It took me a few days to come to the conclusion that I would still move forward with taking the photography business course. I was going to invest that money in faith. I know that I was told it wasn’t going to apply to a voice studio, but maybe they were wrong, and I could glean something. After all, what did they know about having a voice studio?

So, my venture into photography wasn’t what I expected it to be. I loved learning more about it. I enjoyed practicing. I enjoyed getting better at it. It was work though. And, while I’m not afraid of hard work, my family, work, and church life were pulling my attention, and I didn’t have much left to give photography the attention it needed to really make the strides I wanted to. Plus, I wasn’t sure that I wanted to start a new business as a photographer when I already had a business I was good at. Shouldn’t I just grow my current business??

It applied after all

How delighted I was to learn I was right about the business course applying to my voice studio! Yes, they were 100% teaching the course through their lens as photographers (no pun intended), but I’m a smart woman and can transfer principles. I didn’t need to be spoon-fed. It was nice feeling like I wasn’t wasting my money. I was enjoying the course, even though I had no intention of ever being a wedding photographer.

It was so fun sharing what I was learning with Alyssa. A lot of it matched things she’d learned from the social media viewpoint, but she and I were both loving discussing all the voice studio applications.

New business partner

And then another idea came to me: how fun it would be to be in business with Alyssa. She had strengths I didn’t, and vice versa. We could really make a dynamic pair! At first it seemed a little crazy since we didn’t even live in the same state, but the more I sat with the idea, the better it felt. Before I even had time to process that idea, I shared it with her. What was funny was she had had the exact same thought, but just hadn’t shared it with me.

We really started to explore this idea. We talked about all the things we were learning, business mentors she was finding, innovations to music lessons, ideal students and markets… all the things. We decided we could do more good together than separate, so we both let go of our individual businesses and went into business together!

And suddenly it was becoming clear to me: I was to take the photography business course “in the spring” because that was when I would need this information in developing my new voice studio business with my business partner. It wasn’t for a photography business at all–which explains why I never felt I was in harmonious vibration with a photography business!

Part of my work for our new business development was to go through that photography business course. Imagine my surprise — and also I’m not surprised at all — that right from the get-go of taking the business course, I could see how easily so many of the modules could be applied to a voice studio! Maybe my inspiration for taking the course originally had nothing to do with photography, but more about growing my new business! But how cool that I’d learned awesome things about photography on the way that was absolutely helping with other decisions I was making in regard to my website, blog, social media, and other things.

Graduation was complete, but my experience was incomplete

Backing up a minute… at the time I applied for graduation from Mindset Mastery, I was still in a place filled with questions. I didn’t know where things were taking me. I remember filling out the questions for graduation and feeling like I was almost phoning them in. I wanted to give all the heartfelt responses that were full of answers and inspiration. And I just didn’t feel like I had them. When I was filling out my graduation questions, I felt like I should be feeling something different. I felt a little like an imposter. I was reporting about my experience, but felt like I should have a much clearer direction than I did after I’d set goals like I had. My graduation was complete, but I felt like my experience was really incomplete.

I knew I felt confidence in the principles of rare faith, but I didn’t feel like my story was very inspiring beyond my midterm. I didn’t have a house, I didn’t have a photography business (and felt a little lost in what I was doing with it), and didn’t know what to do next.

It just took time

But now… I feel like I’ve got clarity, connection, I understand more of the why of specific inspirations… it just took time. And I know that sometimes it does. I didn’t doubt back then, I just knew I was still gestating, and didn’t know what exactly I was growing.

So, I am so proud to announce my new business: Élève Voice Studio!

Our lessons are different because we focus on video-exchange lessons (think Marco Polo voice lessons), supplemented with an educational video library to assist our students. We believe this will be ideal for our target student, adult women who are so busy with so many other things in life that they don’t necessarily have time for a regularly scheduled lesson.

We aid our students in accomplishing their goals with their voice, because we believe that every individual on this earth has an important work, and that every voice matters! Learning to use that voice will only benefit them in accomplishing their unique work. I love seeing how the different pieces over the past year have fit together toward this business coming to fruition. It truly is a miracle!

Speaking of miracles, we bought a house!

We finally were able to purchase a home (the home we’d been renting, no less — many miracles in that process). It wasn’t my dream home from my goal, but I felt very much like it was just the next step in the process.

There are lots of details to the story, but the short version (because isn’t this already long enough?!) is that we were finally able to work out getting financing for a mortgage, and literally the minute things were finally moving forward, I got an email from our property management company that told us our landlord was planning on selling our home, and wanted to know our plans with living there.

To make it that much more impactful, as I read that email, my rare faith anthem, “From Now On” (mentioned in my original Graduation Spotlight) started playing in the background. I knew it was not an accident that the song came on. I knew that it was God telling me that He was there, that He hadn’t forgotten me, and that my miracle was coming. It did. We got to own a home without even having to move! And I know that the miracles are not through. There’s still more coming! And I couldn’t be more grateful.

It’s been so exciting to see our voice studio blossom! We launched it last year, and have been developing and refining what we’re doing ever since! We’ve really honed in on our goals: our mission (to elevate, to create, to bring joy, to honor others and self, and to become more than we are), and our target client (adult women who love singing, but often put themselves aside). We’ve been reimagining how we reach our target audience (online lessons, and personal asynchronous lessons through Marco Polo) and even wrote a book and an online course!

We’ve stayed focused on serving others, providing value to those that give us their time, be it in person, on social media (@elevevoicestudio), or our podcast (Voice Messages, launching soon!). We have just let go of how we expect things to look. Because of that, the ideas keep flowing on how best to serve those we connect with, including those outside of our work. It’s been so amazing to see how things pivot when we truly let go, but how they become better than we ever imagined them to be!

All of this has taught me more and more how I can trust the guidance I’m given. How when the dreams don’t pan out like I expected them to, that the law of gestation is probably in play, and that my ingredients of the seed (the idea), fertile soil (faith), and time (patience) are all I’m needing before something even better than I had imagined will come to pass.

I can hardly wait to see how this all develops! I can feel it’s not done. I am grateful to finally be in a home of our own, and can feel that my dream home is still coming to me. I am grateful for it. I can feel that my business will be something for good, and will make a significant difference in the world. I am grateful for that. Mostly, I’m just grateful to know what it feels like to live in faith, and I’m happy to do so.

All my best,



Leslie Householder
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