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Photo: Kelly Sikkema (Flickr: Public Domain)

DECEMBER 2016

This is where I'm at: weekly blog posts being published, blogging course complete (and a great investment), business cards printed, reaching out to others in regards to photos (next: collaborations??), trademark process plugging away in background, initial research done for one-off project ideas and had a good discussion with past business-partner about old project.

This winter I need to continue to work at building my community - tribe.  That is the main priority this winter, along with making the one-off products.  It will be great to release these into the world next spring!!!  I need to continue to work on the flow of work at home for my blog and social media and also for the current paid contracts.  And I'm learning a lot about what I want to continue to do as this career expands.

I'd love to hear what you are really excited about!!  There's lots to learn and I hope that we can cheer each other on!

what's what: monday morning check in!

WEEK 33 - POST 1

It WAS a BLAH week last week.  I felt so overwhelmed by the writing contract and my projections of what people "expect" from me (which they don't really!) that the week was crappy.

I'm glad I listed what still got done, because despite it all - things still got done.

I now have a chance to sign up for a podcast class but I'm procrastinating (should I spend the money???) and distracting by judging other people's lifestyles (how can SHE afford all that and have the time to do that?).  These are people I only know from their blog.

I guess the real question is where is this projection coming from?  Do I feel that I need to justify what I'm doing?  Do I feel like I'm not contributing enough to justify how I spend my time?

ACK.

This weekend I spent almost a full day sorting and organizing my photos.  V. had given me a bunch of his so I can use them on the blog but I couldn't find them (I kept asking for the same photos).

And I spent another day taking photos both in the morning and the afternoon (we also got over to a location on the west end of town for a quick shoot on Sat. morning).  There's still two shots that I need soon but I should be OK for now.

THAT feels great!!

In terms of podcast course, graphics, etc.  I do need to invest in this if I really want it to be a BUSINESS.  And I"m not going to worry so much about social media.  I think it's better if I focus on some targeted marketing ideas and connecting with certain people.  I need to really create a community - rather than a following.  (I spent some time "paying it back" on Fbook and liking other people's projects.)  Social media can be REALLY addictive.  I need to do it very lightly in the AM and then a bit more in the PM and ONLY a few times a week.

Regarding people - I did contact some others this week and have made some plans.  Now, rather than contact MORE people, I will ride on that for a week or so and then when it dies down again, I'll contact some others.

Contacted mastermind friend - still need to email her back
Contacted local writing friend - might meet up this week or schedule something for Feb
Contacted C.P. - skyping this week
Contacted local friend about hooping - no hooping but some snowshoeing and labyrinth walking
Texted three friends who texted me on NYE (St. Cat, Barr + West) - nothing back from Barr (but that's OK and will see West this weekend).
One neighbour done the other to do + Christmas Card Friends (emailed one, still about five or so to go!)

So this week I have a post ready already (yeah!!) but must work on another (or two...) but I also have to prioritize my Writing Contract and my C.P.   Wish me luck!  And I wish you all the best also!!

Good luck with your entrepreneur endeavours!!

xo






What's Inspiring You This Week: the lightness of this weekend, it felt good to get something done (even if it wasn't "on my list") and now I'm really set for blogging this winter.  yay!!

Where Are you Stuck This Week: balancing writing contract with C.P. work and blog.  wish me luck!!

What Is The Message You Need To Hear: slow and steady, slow and steady, slow and steady.  open and allowing and accepting and forgiving.  it's all ok.  fear is ok.  sit with your fear.

know that you are only trying to distract yourself when you get in these spirals (judgement, faint of heart, perceived judgement of others on their expectations of you, overwhelm with work)  xo

What Will You Commit To For This Week: one blog post posted.  more postcards up (and some photos in west end).  a draft for the next post (or two).  and signing up for podcast class!!





OK, that's me... now tell me about you!!

What's Inspiring You This Week:

Where Are you Stuck This Week:

What Is The Message You Need To Hear:

What Will You Commit To For This Week:

something achieved even if it feels like a BLAH week

WEEK 33 - POST 2

This week was hard.

Felt overwhelmed by people - still working on how to reach out and take care of my precious time.  I can see how my commitments are already affecting my personal life, my work life and my most important relationship (with my partner).  It's these expectations of others: my mother wants us to go on a river cruise with her, a friend was thinking I was in the hospital because I didn't respond to email sent to my work (even though I had an out of office notification) and then one text on the weekend), other friends I worry are in need but I'm having a hard time even answering my own needs, I never find time to reach out to those out of town and there are still a stack of xmas cards and emails that need responses.

I MUST MAKE PEACE WITH THIS.

And I feel so behind in everything and I know that the next two months are going to be all about the writing contract.  I'm realizing that I (again) have taken on too much.  But what I'm really wondering is how anyone does a blog in this day and age of social media.

It's like a whole different strategy of figuring out what makes an interesting post - how to get people's attention.  And timing and rhythm.

And then there's instagram - what if you are not a great photographer??  Or can't make interesting short videos, etc.

After I post there's this thought: Now I have to get on social media...  Must share the love (heart, retweet, etc), must post interesting things and must talk about what I'm doing.  Get a photo (or two) for instagram each week.  Should I post on Fbook also - that means MORE interaction.  How do I get back to everyone?  Including comments on blogs.

And even the whole blogging thing - I'm a writer - the graphics are harder.  It's getting more and more necessary to be GREAT at a ton of things - graphics, social media, marketing, etc.  I think those who have graphic skills will rise to the top (beautiful blog layouts, great catchy videos, lovely graphics to retweet).  What if you are mostly You Tube or Instagram - does that make it easier - not to have a blog?

I'm a writer but I want great buttons, great photos (for blog), great graphics (infographs & photos) to tweet and I want to know when to use social media and how to schedule all of this - none of which is my forte.  Just getting a post with photos up can take 4 - 6 hours.  And I'm still not satisfied once it's up.  I'm constantly tweaking - catching typos, rewording things, fixing links...

I need to figure out how to make this simpler!

I think at some point - I need to see the blog as more of a resource with tons of info on it (all organized) and weekly posts can be shorter, more just a "Hi! here's something that could be helpful" - especially if it's reacting to some current local news.  And use twitter as the main way to connect with others and then instagram as a fun hobby.  I'd just have to figure how to value that resource (product).

The WEB RESOURCE will be the product rather than the BLOG being the product.

It may be the only way I keep my sanity.  And then if I take a week or two off, there can still be some posts, LOTS of use of website and maybe an intern to handle social media while I'm gone.

THAT WOULD BE COOL!!!

xo


THIS WEEK:

- listened to another Jen Lee - Tim Manley podcast (need to use earphones more when I'm walking)
- pinned up business cards & postcards in local coffee shop (want to do this weekly)
- completed post and published (yay!) and have a second completed post for next week
- posted on social media (Twitter & Fbook) and have alot of kind words from friends (yay!)
- using two other Fbook pages for marketing also - need to manage time working with these a bit better!  (but want them to be a bit more active before I post so that they get more views).
- plans for an outing tonight and photo shoots this weekend (yay sunny days!)
- saw the podcast class this week (almost sure I will take it this time!)
- schedule skype session with mastermind friend soon (received an email with link to her new blog - it's really inspiring!)

what's what: monday morning check in!

WEEK 33 - POST 1

Already feeling the pressure of "other people" and feeling tired and wondering what's the point of it all.  I think there is a big lack of motivation if you don't connect to people and you don't see what the use of your work is to others.  WOW.

You have to believe that it IS making a difference or really what IS the use??

Positive things - I had at least two days of good writing.  There is that.

In terms of people, I need to think about this more.  Not only who I spend time with this year but also how I can connect with others better.  Feel part of something.

Didn't get around to the four questions this week.

xo

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TWO THINGS (this is my weekly effort):

I'm trying to apply Kyle Cease's recommendation.  Trying to look at everything and say "And I love that!"

I'm working on waking up with gratitude every morning.  For every single thing (and I have alot - as some North Americans do.  A warm house, a computer, heating, fresh food, friendly neighbours, democracy, water, etc., etc. etc.)


AND A FEW OTHER THINGS:

I'm listening to Jen Lee & Tim Manley podcasts (to again not feel so alone) while I'm on the elliptical.

Using a POMEDERO app to help me break the work down into smaller bite-sized chunks and getting up and moving during breaks.

If I remember, I'm making the effort to EAT away from desk to give myself a break from the screen.

xo





Need a Boost (and a reminder)

WEEK 32 - POST 3

(A little bit of self-talk & support: "You keep doing it!!  You keep impressing me.  I'm so happy that this is working finally!! First it was the case studies - which you think would never get written and now it's the fact sheets.  You WILL figure this out!! xo)

I did two final drafts of fact sheets this weekend (yay!!) and am ready to get 3-4 more under my belt this week.

It's been a struggle.  (To say the least.)

Every time I sit down, my mind distracts me, my stomach begs for comfort food and my heart is just a big blank.  It's funny as I used to receive this type of work from consultants and think "I can do better" and/or have many critiques about how to improve the information/writing.  But now at the other end of the situation, I'm fearful of the same critiques - although they never really come directly at you.

But I guess I just fear what people "think".  (Especially (I'm realizing) knowing what I thought - how harsh I was at the other end.)

As if thoughts could really ruin us.

In some ways we have learnt that "thoughts become things" but in other ways we are told that "thoughts can't hurt us".

And this worry about other people's thoughts is stopping me.

Also the worry that I won't be able to live up to the "expert in her field" notion that I'm holding myself up to.

(I think this may be a struggle for many (especially women) in my generation.)

Sigh.

I'm trying to do what they always say - write for that "one person".  I'm imagining that one person who will be excited with what I have to say and wants to take on my suggestions...  I'm surrounding myself with others who are part of the same "crusade" so I don't feel so alone and worried about "screaming into the wind".  I'm trying to address the stomach that needs to comforted, the heart that just can't say what's really going on and the mind that distracts rather than facing my "perceived" fears.

And slowly it is working.

(I'm also trying to be accepting of how much time it is taking!!)

:  )

wet and winter and wild

WEEK 32 - POST 2

Did almost three hours writing on Tuesday (also did some visioning posts to give me some mojo: interview post + heroine's journey so far).

Wednesday got some emails written and looked at my fiction writing (also tried to find the fiction writing course I paid for in 2015) - getting inspired to write! And then went out for a walk to get some more winter photos.  Ended up emailing a bit more than I had planned and did some work on the blog at the end of the day instead of writing contract.  (So this is GOOD and BAD).  :  )

Thursday was my fiction writing day and did a bit more chatting than planned (so couldn't do both writing and a walk with my friend!) but happy to actually have pulled out my story.  Did groceries and by the time I got home started prepping dinner.  (Was hungry and tired in the afternoon/evening.)

And tomorrow (Friday) I MUST get back to my writing contract.  You would think that 3 hours is not too much to hope for in one day.  What IS going on?!?!?

OK - more acceptance, allowance, everything is OK as it is.  And let's try to work at in another way.  Just have fun with it.  Do it for yourself.  Enjoy the process.  Write like you are talking to a friend.  Offer up what you think (and don't overthink it!)

xo

Have decided NOT to go to networking event in January (breakfast next week).  I had a writing meetup with a friend this week, might be doing a brunch with some ladies this weekend, going to start up hooping again next week and possibly doing a vision board session with a friend (along with a skype session with my C.P. and mastermind, launch event and a life coach session).  I think that's good enough for this month!!

Contacted mastermind friend - she has a new blog!  we will skype soon! (need to email her back)
Contacted local writing friend - we met up and will try to continue monthly writing sessions.
Contacted C.P. - we have a skype scheduled later this month and will discuss her full book.
Contacted local friend about hooping (but don't think this will work out for her)
Texted three friends who texted me on NYE (St. Cat, Barr + West)

Next will be neighbours + Christmas Card Friends.

Why is all this seemingly social and personal stuff important to my biz... because this year, I'm trying to ensure that my feelings of "obligations" to friends don't overshadow my own priorities (for biz, writing, part-time gig and especially health and happiness.)

So I need to pay attention to how things are in this area and watch how it influences other areas of my life.

It's 2017!!

Let's do this!!

xo