the SPARK 155 ~ I’m leaving early

the SPARK Newsletter

Hi, Reader,

I was texting with my sister last week and mentioned I thought I’d probably be leaving Costa Rica early.

Her response…👇

She’s been down here and knows the area. She also knows I have good friends here and how much I love Costa Rica.

This is my first trip since moving back to California, and it’s been a working trip.

Now that the IGNITE retreat is done (I’ll be doing a full podcast on that), I’m catching up on some rest and am ready to get back to my normal routine and work.

Even though I have my laptop, it’s just not the same.

Plus, I’ll be back in January for two weeks, and that will be more of a vacation.

I don’t think I realized the degree to which I’m a “creature of habit.”

It’s also been non-stop since I got down here, so the thought of being back home and simply focusing on work feels like a big sigh of relief (and no regrets; this trip has been amazing).

What’s been most eye-opening is what I’ve learned about myself, both personally and in regards to my business.

My biggest concern about leaving early was disappointing my friends (my #recoveringCatholic guilt runs deep). I have friends coming in from Canada at the end of the week and was going to stay with them all of next week.

Then I have friends that live here year-round, and I haven’t had a chance to spend much time with them beyond a couple of dinners.

Maybe it’s a bit ego-centric to assume they’d be disappointed, but that’s where my brain goes (anyone else? 🤔).

Fortunately, I made the best decision for me and am heading home on the 5th instead of the 11th. I get to see everyone and take care of myself.

This got me thinking about how many times I’ve hesitated in my business about making a decision for me.

I used to be really bad about this.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve said yes to hopping on a call, participating in a summit, scheduling a call on my no-call days (Monday and Friday), agreeing to promote something, or hosting a live stream/webinar for a tool/company because they asked.

When I was new in business, doing this made sense.

This is how we learn, how we create relationships, how we grow.

But if you’re creating or doing for others, you’re probably not doing it for yourself.

I think some of this was FOMO, and some of it was that it was easier to promote and talk about other people as opposed to promoting or talking about myself.

I love sharing what other people are doing… but I have to put myself first.

We ALL do.

I’ve shared this quote before, but it bears repeating. This is a line from the poem “The Invitation” by Oriah Mountain Dreamer:

I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself. If you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul.

In my experience, this is a lot harder for women than men.

Take this thought into the last two months of the year.

Do what works for you. Such as…

  • Participate in running a Black Friday Cyber Monday offer
  • Decide NOT to participate in Black Friday Cyber Monday
  • Start planning for Q1 of 2024… or not
  • Take all of Thanksgiving week off (in the States)
  • End your work-year mid-December
  • Gift yourself the space to get offline, with pen and paper, and have fun planning 2024

You get the idea.

As hyped as these last two months are (and for good reason, there’s a lot of traffic online), if you don’t have the capacity, it’s okay to bow out.

Unless you’ve been building or planning for these two months, putting pressure on yourself because you think you’re “supposed” to do something will probably backfire.

Take a hot minute, think about what you want, and trust your decision.

SPARK Spotlight 🔥

So… that little image above of my “Creature of Habit?”

I created that in about 30 seconds with DALL-E, built right into ChatGPT. It was a quick prompt to see what it would create. Here’s the prompt (not stellar, don’t judge 😉).

“I’m writing a newsletter and referring to myself as a “creature of habit.” I’d love for you to create a cute ‘creature’ for me to use in this email. I want it to be on the smaller size, Pixar-style, with vibrant colors and a happy face. Please have it wearing a hoodie, some leggings, over-ear noise-canceling headphones, and holding a cup of coffee. Maybe at a desk with an iMac or Macbook Air. “

Here’s the output:

Seriously… we are living in some amazing times. 🤯 I LOVE that all of this stuff is built-in to ChatGPT.

A Little Brainpower 🧠

Another perspective on where to start with selling (and I bought this, it’s good). “7 Lessons I Learned Launching a $1 Digital Product.”​

And here’s what happens with deliberate practice. “Today, my little one-person business crossed $5M in revenue.”​

Great tips on building a landing page. “How I Created The Landing Page For My New Landing Page Course.”​

Tool Time 🛠

  • Webinars: Despite not listing their pricing anywhere (pet peeve), this looks like a good webinar tool. Try Kaltura for webinars free here.​
  • Video: Another option for cutting long-form videos into short-form. This is pretty basic but worth trying for free. Try BoltFoundry free here.​
  • Projects & Tasks: This might just be what I’ve been looking for. Simple, it looks good, and you can start for free. Try Hello Ivy free here.​
  • Video: I’ve shared this before, but now they’ve added b-roll. Select your transcript and insert b-roll. Plus, they have new aspect ratios (square & landscape, not just shorts). Check out Opus.clips here.​

Sounds about right to me… 🤣

I hope your October was fantastic and November is off to a great start.

As much as I love the beach and warm weather (and lots of rain), I’m looking forward to the cooler temperatures in Northern California.

Have a fantastic day,

the SPARK newsletter

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