Brand Strategy & Design
Thu, 19 Mar 2015 18:05:12 +0000
12 Days of Systems Challenge :: How to get more done this week (+ a free download)
Mon, 08 Dec 2014 07:30:31 +0000
This post is part of the 12 Days of Systems Challenge hosted by Val Geisler of aspire&grow. If you’re ready to get a handle on your systems and processes in 2015, get signed up for Systems Finishing School. Val is awesome and you’ll love this program. If you want to catch up on the posts you may have missed in this series,…
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When Val asked me to share one of my favorite systems that has helped streamline my business, I had a hard time picking just one, because systems are SO important and I love them. But, I have to say that next to my design process (which I’ll be sharing all about ), the number one system I use in my business is definitely my planning process.
During my first year in business, I was all over the place. I would wake up in the morning and have no clue what to work on. Because of this, project timelines got extended, products never got launched, blog posts never got written and I was a stressed out mess. NO FUN!
Enter the lovely new time management system I use now that has allowed me the ability to work with over 40 clients over the past 2 years, write and sell 2 eBooks, create and launch 1 course, and then turn that course into a self-study program, along with a few other fun collaborations and projects. And now that I have a baby at home, having this system in place is even more important in order for me to have a productive week.
Okay, so let’s get to it. Here’s how I do my planning each month.
I set aside the first Monday of each month to sit down and revisit my goals and priorities for the month. The monthly plan is meant to be a larger overview and shouldn’t focus so much on the individual tasks. Using a calendar or planner, here’s what I do:
Mark down all of your appointments for the month
Jot down the blog posts you want to publish this month
Write down your goals for this month
Decide what you’ll focus on each week to reach those goals
Don’t worry about focusing on the individual tasks for each week, but instead more of the larger priorities for each week. Once you reach that specific week, you’ll be able to break it down into individual tasks.
Then, each week on Friday afternoon, Sunday night or Monday morning, set aside time to do your weekly planning.
Do a “braindump” of everything that needs to get done this week
I call it a braindump for a reason — list everything. Appointments, tasks, etc. Start by reviewing what you didn’t get done last week so that it can be moved over to this week’s list. Then, go through your project management software and jot down all of the tasks that are due this week for clients and for your own projects. And don’t forget to include those individual tasks that move you towards reaching your monthly goals.
Using a weekly calendar or your daily planner, jot down your scheduled appointments for the week
For each day this week, choose the Top Three things from your braindump list you want to get done
These three things might change, but for now it’s important to have an idea of what you’ll be working on each day. I also recommend creating what I like to call “My Ideal Week” plan, so that you know what kinds of tasks you want to do on certain days (i.e. I write my weekly links post every Thursday morning, and only have client calls scheduled for Tuesday and Thursday afternoons). This makes choosing your daily priorities that much easier. I include a template for creating your Ideal Week in my program, , if that’s something you’re interested in using.
Keep a running list of smaller tasks separate from your Top Three list
If there are other smaller tasks that you think you might be able to get to, or ones that pop up during the day, I like to jot those down on another running to-do list on that day’s page. I use the Day Designer by Whitney English as my monthly/daily planner and use the “Other To-Dos” section for this.
Each night before you sign off for the day, review your Top Three tasks for the following day. If anything needs to be edited, do that now so you’re ready to begin your work day as soon as you sit down. Typically, if I didn’t get something done that day, it gets moved over to the next day as the highest priority.
And always remember to be realistic with how much you can get done each day. It’s the worst feeling when you feel like you didn’t really accomplish a lot for the day, because you overbooked yourself to begin with.
DOWNLOAD THE FREE PLANNING TEMPLATE
To help you out with the monthly and weekly planning, I put together a template of my monthly goals planner sheet and my weekly braindump sheet. I usually just use my notebook, but this template is much prettier, so I’m going to start using these. I recommend printing out enough of these to last a couple months and popping them in a binder. That way, you have a place where you can always check back on your monthly and weekly goals to make sure that what you’re doing each day is inching you closer and closer to reaching those goals.
To download the free template, just enter your name and email address here and you’ll get it sent straight to you:
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TOOLS + RESOURCES I USE AND LOVE:
– This is what I’m currently using to map out my weeks until my Whitney English Day Designer takes it’s place on January 1st!
(the shop is now closed, but I also recommend Emily Ley’s ) – This is what I use to organize my daily priorities, AKA – the Top Three.
– My favorite pens to use. They don’t bleed through your paper and they make planning much more fun!
TIP: Using this system without a bigger plan in place for your year will get you through the day, but I highly recommend having a 12-Month Action Plan in place, because you’ll be able to achieve so much more each day/week/month/year. For help with creating your 2015 goals and plan, check out these resources:
What’s the #1 system you’ve set up in your business that keeps your head on straight? What system could you not live without? I geek out over this stuff, so let’s hear it!
WANT TO SHARE?
Here are some done-for-you tweets ready to go.
Learn how to get more done this week (free download included)
Ready to get more done this week? Head over here for a proven process & free download
Ready to finally get more done this week? Here’s how I do it (+ a free download)
For more help on time management and goal setting, check out . There is an entire week dedicated just to this topic. Also included with your purchase of CBK is an Ideal Week template and a 12-Month Action Calendar. Want to take CBK for a test drive? .
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Creating a launch strategy that does the selling for you
Tue, 20 Aug 2013 11:30:34 +0000
Have you ever launched a new offering, told everyone about it once, got a few people to buy and then all of a sudden… sales disappeared? Are you afraid of annoying your email list with too many promotional emails? Over the past couple years, I’ve been studying how the big dogs launch their offerings. On the customer’s end, it looks…
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Have you ever launched a new offering, told everyone about it once, got a few people to buy and then all of a sudden… sales disappeared?
Are you afraid of annoying your email list with too many promotional emails?
Over the past couple years, I’ve been studying how the big dogs launch their offerings. On the customer’s end, it looks so polished and perfectly-timed, and I wanted to know how they do it. After picking things apart and launching a few things of my own, I realized that the entire launch strategy could be easily broken up into three segments:
Give It Away For Free
Keep In Touch
These three pieces are what have created peaceful launch strategies for me & countless others, and I want to show you exactly how you can start using it for your launches.
Each piece is dependent on the next, so it’s important to make sure you’re using them all (or at least pieces of each).
Okay, so step #1: Gauge Interest.
Before you create your offering’s content or invest a ton of time or money into your offering, it’s really important to gauge the amount of interest you have for your offering’s topic. You can do this by collecting the names and emails of people who are interested in this offering, before you actually create it.
Before you spend hours creating your offering, start by seeing if people are actually interested….
Here’s how you can start to gauge interest:
Come up with a catchy name & tagline for your offering
Create a separate email list for people interested in this offering. You want to create a separate list so you can keep track of who wants what and not annoy your general email list with promotional emails for this offering. We’re going to call this list the I’m Interested list.
Put up a simple opt-in page. I recommend using
or . Put up your logo and tagline and connect the opt-in page to the email list you created for this offering.
Start promoting this opt-in page at the bottom of your blog posts, on social media and in your email newsletter… all before the offering actually launches.
If you start to get a good amount of people interested in your offering, you’ve got the green light to go forward with it.
If you’re more risky, you can actually start to sell the product in order to see how many people are interested. Once you start selling though, you have to create no matter what, so proceed at your own risk.
GIVE IT AWAY FOR FREE
This is the first part of your sales funnel. You need something to pull people in and get them interested in what you’re talking about.
An example of this in my own business, is my free download, the worksheet. I use this worksheet to 1) provide awesome free content and 2) let people know about a group workshop they might be interested in. The key here is to invite them to check out the workshop. Use the last page and invite them to learn more. Nobody likes to be sold to, but an invitation feels much more warm and friendly.
To make sure what you’re giving away for free is working, you need to do a little reverse engineering. Think about what your dream customers need to know/learn/do before they work with you. Then, give them that info.
Here are some examples of free content you can create:
Then, once you’ve created the free content, you send it out to your I’m Interested email list and start promoting it on your blog post and social media as a lead capture tool. This will get people moving through your sales funnel.
The next piece of giving away some awesome free content is through your blog.
Here’s a quick blogging strategy for before and during your launch:
BLOG POST STRATEGY : BEFORE LAUNCH
When it comes to your blog post strategy, I’ve seen it work best when you start writing blog posts directly related to your offering topic about 2 weeks before you actually launch. If you usually post about once per week, that means having 2 blog posts lined up and ready to go before you even launch.
Just like the free training and content from above, the best way to do this is to reverse engineer what your dream customers need to know/learn/do before they decide that you’re offering is the perfect fit for them.
At the end of each blog post, invite them to sign up on your opt-in page to the I’m Interested list and/or get your free download (which will also add them to the I’m Interested list).
BLOG POST STRATEGY : DURING LAUNCH
Most launches (depending on the price of the offering) last around 3-4 weeks. During those weeks, you should be consistently posting valuable content that relates to what you’re offering.
Use the same strategy for the “Before Launch” posts and reverse engineer to get your content.
Then, at the bottom of your blog post, invite them to sign up for your free content (your video training series, worksheet, eBook, whatever it is that you created). Once they sign up and check out the landing page for the new offering, you’ll have their interest and their email address so you can keep in touch with them.
Which leads to the next point.
KEEP IN TOUCH
During the launch of your new offering, it’s so important to keep in touch with the people who expressed interest in your offering. We are very distracted people these days. What’s front-of-mind one day can be completely forgotten the next. The more you can stay front-of-mind, the better. But, that doesn’t mean sending a new email every day. It means providing super useful content and time-sensitive reminders.
What do I mean by super useful content and time-sensitive reminders?
Well, for one thing, once someone signs up to your email list to learn more about what you’re offering, they should first receive the free content you promised that we talked about in the last section.
But, beyond that, you should also make it a point to provide super useful content each time you email them. That means even when you’re sending out the reminder emails, you should still be showing them why what you’re teaching is so important for them and why they need to get their hands on it.
Then, even if they don’t end up purchasing, they’re still getting really valuable content and they’ll remember that. They’ll remember you.
I like to send out three different content-packed emails in between when they sign up to learn more and registration ends. At the end of each email, I invite them to enroll in the workshop.
For the time-sensitive reminders, there are 2 really important times you should be sending out reminder emails:
Near the end of your bonus offers (if you have any)
Near the end of the registration date
If you’re offering time-sensitive bonus offers, you need to make sure you’re actually reminding people when that bonus offers ends. I recommend sending a remind out the day before the bonus offer ends and on the day-of.
If you have a time-sensitive registration period, it’s really important that you remind everyone a few times when it actually ends. Most people purchase in the last couple days of the registration period. If you’re not sending out reminder emails during the end of your launch, you’re probably missing out on a lot of last-minute registrations.
For the end of the launch, I recommend sending out a few emails:
Two days before registration ends
One day before registration ends
The morning that registration ends
The night that registration ends
An hour or two before registration ends
Looks a bit repetitive and unnecessary, but I’ve seen it work a few times.
To make it really easy for you to walk through, I created a free Promotion Plan download.
It’s just a simple sheet that lays out when to send out what, just in case all the copy above sounded like rambling… which I tend to do sometimes. No shame.
The best part about all this is, you can schedule every single one of these emails before hand. Your entire launch strategy is put on autopilot and now you just need to start engaging with people and get the word out on social media and within your own community.
If you use advanced software, such as , you can even send out a reminder email to the people who click the link to go view your landing page for the offering. These are hot, hot leads that you should follow up with if your software allows.
You can also do this in , by creating a separate segment based on the people who clicked a specific link in a past broadcast.
I WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU
What part of the launch strategy do you struggle most with?
Or, what have you found to be useful during your launches? Any secret things you do to keep the stress levels down and the fun levels UP?
Tell me in the comments below. I’d love to know and I know everyone else would, too.
PS. , so if you’re ready to finally get those ideas out of your head and turn them into offerings that 1) make you money, 2) make a difference for your clients and 3) position yourself as an expert in your field, . There are only 2 SPOTS LEFT for the Level 2 package, which includes the entire workshop + your opt-in page and sales page design + your sales page copy.
PPS. If you haven’t heard the new yet, I’m running a . If the workshop is a bit outside your budget, but you definitely need to learn this content, here’s your chance.
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3 surefire ways to make your ideas happen
Tue, 09 Jul 2013 12:30:07 +0000
It feels like January in the air, just with a dash of heat and fireworks. Kind of like a blank slate to start fresh and make your ideas happen? A great time to implement some new strategies and routines into your business. I’ve been in full-on planning mode for the last few weeks. I also made a few pretty huge…
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It feels like January in the air, just with a dash of heat and fireworks.
Kind of like a blank slate to start fresh and make your ideas happen? A great time to implement some new strategies and routines into your business.
I’ve been in full-on planning mode for the last few weeks. I also made a few pretty huge money commitments.
One of them being Infusionsoft. I just signed up for Infusionsoft last week, so for the next couple of weeks, that’s where my computer screen will be at. When you’re dropping that amount of cash on a piece of software, you best believe that I’m getting my money’s worth.
I’m going to do a summary of Infusionsoft once I get a bit more comfortable with it, too, for those of you on the fence of taking the leap and signing up.
Anyways, back to July feeling like January.
For many of you, this is going to be a great time to rethink your upcoming projects and put solid plans into place. That means getting real with yourself on what you can and can not focus on over the next 6 months. Even though I’d like to think of myself as superwoman and be able to accomplish 10 projects at once, the reality is, I’m not (fooled you, I know).
Like many of you know, ast week I launched . Throughout the process of creating this book, I’ve learned a few things when it comes to actually making your ideas come to life.
Drum roll, please.
#1 You shouldn’t work on too many projects at once
#2 You need to create some form of accountability for your ideas
#3 You have to attach deadlines and goals to your ideas
These may seem obvious, but if you’ve ever felt like you haven’t been able to make your ideas come to life, chances are you were missing at least one of these important steps.
Let’s dive in, shall we?
1. Don’t work on too many projects at once
I suffer from shiny object syndrome, as you learned in , which means that when I get new ideas I want to start implementing them right away. Although this can sometimes be a blessing, it’s mostly a curse, because what happens is… NOTHING HAPPENS.
I get the new idea and then the project I was supposed to be focusing on gets pushed to the back burner. That’s how it used to be.
Now (since I’ve been working to change this habit), I jot down these “lightbulb” ideas into my Moleskin notebook and revisit that notebook at the beginning of each month as I review my Monthly Action Calendar. I use my Monthly Action Calendar to keep track of 1) my top priorities for each month, 2) what’s launching, 3) what I’m creating, and 4) what my goals are.
I’ve also started using the
to create a more long-term vision plan, something I’ve struggled with in the past. It was easier this time around, though, as I get more and more comfortable with what I’m working towards.
When you’re first starting to really make your ideas happen… ideas that are totally out of your comfort zone, choose one to focus on. Once that one project is finished, launched or whatever, then move onto the next one.
Marie Forleo also talks about the importance of choosing one project to work on at a time in .
2. Create accountability
I can’t stress how important it is to let other people in on your idea. Not only does it allow you to get necessary feedback, but it holds you responsible for following through.
Back in November 2013 when I created PowerPlay, I invited people to follow along, week-by-week, with my business happenings throughout 2013. The deal was, if they paid for it, I’d send them one email every two weeks with a behind-the-scenes look at exactly what was going on in my business at that moment.
If I hadn’t have created this accountability, I can almost guarantee that I wouldn’t have just launched
last week. But once I had these people paying to follow along, I had to follow through. Hard core accountability.
Also, when you’re creating a new coaching program or course or want to do something you’ve never done before, like host a webinar, the first thing you need to do is get people involved.
Launch a registration page for your webinar even if you haven’t created the slides. Once people start registering for the webinar, you have to follow through.
It’s almost like playing a game with yourself, and it works.
3. Set S.M.A.R.T goals for your idea
The next and probably one of the most important steps is to attach deadlines and goals to your idea. If you simply just say you want to create so & so idea in the next 3 months, but don’t attach any milestones or goals to it, chances are it’s going to stay in the creation stage.
When you’re setting goals, make sure they’re S.M.A.R.T –
Specific: Answers the question, what do I want to accomplish?
Measurable: Answers the questions… How much? How many? How will I know when it’s accomplished?
Attainable: Simple put, your goal needs to be realistic. Shoot for the moon, but within means.
Relevant: Your goal needs to support the vision for your business. Ask yourself, is this goal bringing me closer to my vision? If it’s not, then what the hell are you doing wasting your time on it?
Time-Bound: Give your goal a timeframe to stick to. When can I accomplish this goal? What can I do 6 weeks from now? What can I do 6 months from now? This ones a killer. Like I mentioned above, I sometimes think that I can get WAY more done in 6 months than I actually can. Make sure you’re being real with yourself and giving yourself enough time to give each of your projects 100% of your focus.
Once you’ve got these goals, create a Project Blueprint that lays out the important milestones or goals that you’ll need to accomplish in order to make this idea come to life.
My next step would be to put it up on my calendar and create a marketing plan for it… Webinar or no webinar? Free video series? When should that be released? Email campaign to market the new project? What should it say? Etc, etc.
Are you feeling all revved up and ready to make the next 6 months UH-mazing?
What’s on your project list? What are you most excited about?
What’s 1 strategy that you’ve found incredibly useful when it comes to making your ideas happen?
Tell us in the comments below!
PS: I just got my new pictures back, so get ready for a massive downpour of my face. You’re welcome.
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It’s not a NOW thing.
Tue, 30 Apr 2013 13:49:44 +0000
Warning: this is more of a public service announcement & reminder – to you, to me and to every other creative entrepreneur out there who has big dreams and crazy minds. Do you have the same problem as me? You want everything… like NOW. You want to launch that new course, and that new ebook and that new service……
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Warning: this is more of a public service announcement & reminder – to you, to me and to every other creative entrepreneur out there who has big dreams and crazy minds.
Do you have the same problem as me?
You want to launch that new course, and that new ebook and that new service… like NOW.
But, you can’t seem to focus on just one thing long enough to launch.
I’m working on it, but thanks to talking with a, we’ve come up with my new motto:
It’s posted on my computer and I repeat it to myself everyday. The point is – take it one project at a time, do a fantastic job, rest and then move onto the next one.
Oh, and ! It’ll be a constant reminder to you every time your creative mind starts to wander to the next project before you’re finished with the current one.
If you need help planning your goals and projects for the year, pop your name and email in the box below this post or on the sidebar to receive instant access to my free creative entrepreneur toolbox, which contains a 90-day planning calendar.
I want to hear from you!
Do you struggle with wanting it all NOW? How do you plan out your year of project priorities? What (if anything) has worked for you when focusing on one project at a time?
Tell me in the comments!
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Why We Feel More Resistance After the New Year & How to Get Past It
Tue, 08 Jan 2013 14:00:21 +0000
The new year is always great. Full of hope, aspirations and motivation. Full of ideas, intentions and goals. And, unfortunately, full of creation-overload. The new year definitely has this weird thing about it that makes everything feel like they can have a fresh start, when in all reality it’s just another day with a different number at the end….
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The new year is always great.
Full of hope, aspirations and motivation. Full of ideas, intentions and goals.
And, unfortunately, full of creation-overload.
The new year definitely has this weird thing about it that makes everything feel like they can have a fresh start, when in all reality it’s just another day with a different number at the end. I’ll play along, though, and admit that the new year does have a tendency to give us an extra boost of motivation to reach our goals.
That’s why you always see things start on January 1st.
Like the 365 day projects.
Or the work out 5 days a week projects.
Or the eat healthier projects.
In all honesty, why is it that we couldn’t start working out before the holidays? Why did we have to wait until January 1st to make this change in our lives? Why did you have to wait till January 1st to start your business?
The new year brings a sense of stress and weight to our already heavy shoulders. It brings higher expectations and time-commitments.
For me, it brings a lot of .
I hate resistance even more than I hate the fact that I’m lactose-intollerant. It makes me so angry that I have this amazingly-awesome idea in my head and just. can’t. seem. to. take. action. Seriously annoying, and I’m sure you feel the same way.
Here are a few things that I do, that may help you, overcome New Years resistance:
Spread out your projects by the month. You don’t have to start working on every single project right now. This is especially hard for me to realize, even as I type this. I’m the type of person that wants to do something the exact second that I think of the idea. I want to go straight to GoDaddy, buy the domain, install WordPress and write the course outline. Sometimes, this works for me. Other times, it just bogs me down because I end up with 5 unfinished ideas and a backup of existing projects.
Be specific. Sometimes starting is the hardest part. If you are starting the creation process of a new product or program, or maybe redesigning your website, make a list of all the major tasks that need to be accomplished. Then, assign a major task to each week (or maybe two depending on how large they are and how much time you have). Working on these tasks, chunk by chunk, can help you overcome the resistance of starting in the first place due to complete overwhelm.
If you’re currently working on client projects, and can’t seem to find the time to work on these new ideas for programs and products, dedicate 1 hour each day for this new idea. Write your sales page one day, write the program outline the next day, set up your affiliate accounts the next day, and so on. Continue to work on your current projects that you’ve already started, while making small steps towards finishing your new programs.
Do you feel the same way I do about the new year? Tell me in the comments below how you plan to overcome the new year resistance. Maybe it’s one of the ways I mentioned above? Maybe it’s something that’s worked in the past for you? Either way, I would love to hear it, and I know everyone else would too!
I’ve got this super-amazing project in the works (once I get past this stage of resistance, of course!), and I want you to be the first to hear about it. If you’re ready to start your business or ready to make a dramatic shift in your business model to better reflect your true passions and skills, you should sign up.
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A Year in Review : 2012
Thu, 03 Jan 2013 14:00:35 +0000
I’ve never done a ‘Year in Review’ post, but I’m constantly reminded that I don’t celebrate my successes as often as I should. Instead, I focus on what I can do next. If you’re anything like me and forget to celebrate your current accomplishments, join me in reflecting back on 2012. For me, 2012 was one of the best years…
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I’ve never done a ‘Year in Review’ post, but I’m constantly reminded that I don’t celebrate my successes as often as I should.
Instead, I focus on what I can do next.
If you’re anything like me and forget to celebrate your current accomplishments, join me in reflecting back on 2012.
For me, 2012 was one of the best years of my life. Everything that happened has led to where I am now, and I’m extremely grateful for how quickly my business has grown.
I’m also extremely grateful for you – whether you’ve just started following me or if you’ve been following me since I started my personal blog. Before, I was in this industry because I loved to do it. But, over the past few months, I’ve realized my bigger calling – to help YOU reach the same success within your first year of business like I have.
To help YOU quit your soul-sucking job and start living your own life.
To help YOU realize that it can be done, regardless of what your friends and family are telling you.
To help YOU move past the feeling of resistance and create something huge.
My biggest goal for 2013 is to help more people reach creative freedom so that they can focus on their own passions and dreams.
A lot has happened to get me to this point.
Here’s what my 2012 looked like:
in Salt Lake City, which gave me the courage to quit my job.
I booked more clients in one month than I had in any month prior.
I put my 2 weeks in.
I was committing to living out my fullest potential and my own dreams – not somebody else’s (this has become my main motivation for helping other ready-to-be-solopreneurs).
I revamped my extremely boring website into something a little more ‘me’ at the time.
I started my email list.
Went to a , hosted by Jess Lively, where I met a handful of amazing women that I continue to keep in touch with (plus a couple of clients).
for Laura Roeder’s blog.
Was featured on .
Reworked my client experience process, added in a print workbook and nifty folder for each of my brand development clients. There was a huge response to this new process.
I decided to start sharing more , rather than Pinterest weekly wrap-up posts. I realized that my strengths were in teaching and leading – not in curating. This switch made a huge difference in the number of people visiting my website everyday.
I relaunched my website again, putting more emphasis on my email list, which multiplied by 400%.
to my list of services.
I flew to Palm Springs to hang out with 20 other designers. It was amazing to be surrounded by so many people that understood exactly what you were doing.
My new focus on creative women entrepreneurs was key to my current success. Focusing in on a specific group of people has made the most dramatic change to date.
I attended RHH Live, which was life-changing. Not only in the things I learned, but in the people I met.
I created PowerPlay 2013 and opened up registration to my email list with a goal of 25 subscribers.
I made my first 5-figure monthly income (thanks to incorporating another stream of revenue).
By the time I had closed PowerPlay 2013, I had 90 subscribers.
I decided to re-focus my attention, cut down on the number of design projects I book and teach others in a more extensive, and far-reaching way.
I took my longest vacation (12 days) and it proved to be just what I needed to come into 2013 clear, focused and ready to go.
A LOT has happened. A LOT has changed. But everything has built up to where I am now.
In the future, to make this post even more full of gratitude, changes and interesting milestones I’m going to create a jar where I place a piece of paper with each milestone I reach. Then, at the end of the year, I’ll record which milestones made the biggest difference in my business, along with the things that I’m most grateful for. Try it with me.
PS – I just started my Daily Declaration emails. If you want to sign up to receive a daily affirmation to keep you on track with those amazing goals, you can
or sign up on the sidebar! Be sure to check the box for the Daily Declaration!
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My Stop Doing List
Tue, 18 Dec 2012 15:00:31 +0000
As we move into the new year, I have a weird mix of pigeons (Josh Pais’ Committed Impulse reference) – excitement, scared, alive, unsure you name it. 2012 has been a pretty amazing year for my business and I. The first reason being that my business was born in 2012. Sure, I had been freelancing on the side for a…
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As we move into the new year, I have a weird mix of pigeons (Josh Pais’
you name it.
2012 has been a pretty amazing year for my business and I. The first reason being that my business was born in 2012. Sure, I had been freelancing on the side for a couple of years, but hadn’t yet taken the leap of faith to do my own thing and rely on myself for a paycheck. It was scary, but something I knew I always wanted to do.
Speaking of that, I’ve got something special planned to celebrate my official Year 1 of Creative Freedom. Stay tuned.
Reason #2 – 2012 taught me A LOT about myself. What I started out doing eight months ago is not even close to what I have planned in 2013. 2012 was a year of evolution and changing, as I expect 2013 will be, because we must always be changing in order to grow. Just goes to show that wanting everything ‘perfect’ before you start is the most awful excuse you can have for not starting.
So, in honor of evolving, I’ve decided that instead of declaring my goals for 2013 (that post coming up soon), first, I would focus on what I don’t want to do in 2013.
has taught the importance of in order to be doing more of what you want, you have to stop doing things so that you can make room for the others.
This applies to the better half of 2013 as I wrap things up with current and some future clients.
I’m declaring my stop doing list to the world, because :
I mean it!
I hope it will help hold me accountable to actually stop doing these things
I deserve to.
Okay, without further ado, here’s what I’m going to stop doing in 2013:
Yes, that’s right. I love designing, but it’s time to step back. When I think about what I want to be known for, it’s not design. That was simply my entry into the online world.
In order to use my creative energy boiling up inside of me everyday, I’m only going to take on a very, VERY limited number of clients to work 1-on-1 with. Only projects that truly excite me. Naturally, these clients will get extra special attention. As I’ve continued designing, the routine task of working on other projects has gotten to me, and I haven’t been able to pay as much attention to each of my clients as I would want to. This just can’t be. I would rather work with 4 people every year and treat them like queens, rather than work with 25 and feel like a Photoshop robot. It’s just not for me. Fear not, though, for everyone else, I’m going to focus my energy on working with larger groups at a time, because that’s where I excel. I’m just going to make everything I create EXTRA PRETTY (using that design background)!
In order to stop doing this, I’ve deleted the Brand Spark Intensive off of my Work With Me page. That’s the first step to stop doing things. Don’t advertise it anymore.
That means I won’t be leaving Facebook open in a separate tab ‘just in case’ someone posts something new. As I write this, I realize how ridiculous it is that I even have to write this down, but it’s the truth. Disconnecting from social media is a difficult thing.
This, as many of you can probably relate, is big one. This is what the stage of my projects looks like:
Jot down the problem that it solves
Determine who would be willing to purchase
Buy the domain name
Design a logo
1 day later….
Is anybody even going to buy this?
Why am I wasting my time?
I don’t have the background to teach this.
I should just scrap it and focus on what I’m supposed to be doing.
3 months later….
The same idea comes back around (because obviously it’s a good one), but you still go through the same stages of the cycle – pure excitement and complete self-doubt.
Have you been there before?
It’s time to follow-through.
It’s time to get out of our own heads and stop over-thinking it.
I’m going to learn to rely on others a bit more than I have in the past. I need to let go a little and trust that other people can hold up the fort while I’m doing what I’m best at. It’s the only way to .
Sometimes I get extra bursts of creative energy that I feel I just HAVE to follow through on, but I wake up the next morning upset that I ‘slept in’, when in reality I still only got 7 hours of sleep. Plus, going to bed at the same time as my husband is something I should do more often (even though he does go to bed pretty early!).
I’m sure I’ll continue adding to my list, but this sums it up for now.
One more time for good measure.
In 2013, I’m going to stop:
Is there something that’s on your Stop Doing List that you just need to shout out to the world in order to actually stop doing it?
Write it in the comments. I’ll hold you to it! Promise.
Also, be sure to sign up to my email list below this post to be the first to know about upcoming projects, programs and free webinars! 2013 is going to be a BIG year and I want you along for the ride!
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My Top 3 Project Planning Tips
Thu, 13 Dec 2012 15:00:42 +0000
I bet you’re up to your ears in project planning tips and tools. Well, here’s another to add to your plate. You’re welcome. I’m a big planner and marketing runs through my veins. Here are the top 3 things I’ve learned over the years about planning for the next year. 1. Be clear on what your future looks like….
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I bet you’re up to your ears in project planning tips and tools. Well, here’s another to add to your plate.
I’m a big planner and marketing runs through my veins. Here are the top 3 things I’ve learned over the years about planning for the next year.
1. Be clear on what your future looks like.
Everything that you plan to work on next year should be moving your towards the bigger picture.
In 2-3 years, what do you want to be doing? Who do you want to be working with? How many hours do you want to be working? What does your work day look like? What are you teaching?
When you are planning for next year, make sure that everything relates back to your larger umbrella of WHY. Make sure it’s solving a major problem for your readers/clients/customers.
2. Don’t underestimate how much you can get done, but don’t put too much on your plate.
I like to stick to 1 big launch and 2-3 small launches each year. At the end of the year, I brainstorm all of my ‘could-be’ program launches. From there, I choose which project is going to be my biggest priority. With the rest of the list, I decide which 2-3 will be my smaller launches.
3. Have a plan
Once I’ve decided my major launches for the year, I put these on my calendar for when I want them to launch, so that I know how far in advance I need to start working on it. From there, I create my full task list for each project and decide which items are a priority, which need to be hired out and which are the ongoing/at-my-own-pace task items.
I like to do this initial brainstorming away from my computer, maybe in a coffee shop. Somewhere where I can think and eliminate all chances that I’ll become distracted. Once I’ve jotted everything down, I turn to the computer.
I create a master task list for each project in a google doc. I live in google docs (or at least my business does). From there, you can go on to create your weekly and daily task lists. Seeing everything down in writing puts you into a better perspective of how long it will take you to accomplish something. Just be sure to start when you need to. If you’re new to something (like writing a book), make sure you give yourself some extra time to get all of your eggs in place.
To help you out, I’ve put together a Project Planner worksheet for you to use to map out each of your projects. This is the exact template that I use for my own program launches, but I understand that not everyone is a crazy-excessive planner like me. If it fits your work style, enjoy! I hope it helps.
This worksheet is just a small part of my PowerPlan workbook that I use with my clients (and a little gift for all
members) and I’ve gotten great feedback and how clearly they can envision their year ahead after jotting everything down.
Okay, your turn!
Tell me in the comments below what you struggle with most when planning for next year. Do you get stuck in the idea creation process or get overwhelmed looking at everything that still needs to be done?
I’m planning a set of FREE webinars for 2013 and I want to take your biggest struggles/problems/fears and show you a new way of looking at the planning process.
PS – As a little thank you to my email list for going through the hassle of re-confirming their email address after I made the switch to Aweber, I’ve decided to give my entire email list a FREE copy of the full PowerPlan workbook. You can sign up below this post or on the sidebar. I’ll be sending to both my email list and
members next week!
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