Running A Business When Life Goes Sideways… And My Secret Project KDS: 010
I debated about doing this episode… mainly because I’m still in the thick of things and I’m pretty raw. However, I also know that the best way of getting to the other side of things is through it.
After 48 years on this planet and a lot of inner work, I’ve learned to tame the ego a bit and have found a lot of peace in the surrender, even if it takes me a longer than I’m comfortable with.
So, fair warning: if this stuff makes you uncomfortable, then now’s the time to stop listening.
My other disclaimer before I get into the episode is that this isn’t solely my journey, so if I’m a little cryptic, it’s out of love and respect for everyone involved.
Current Business Situation
Let me start by setting the stage a little bit.
I have never been happier with the work I’m doing and the direction my business is heading. I’ve done a massive pivot this year (from The WordPress Chick to Kim Doyal), no longer do any website work, and have absolutely fallen in love with content creation and marketing, in all formats. For lack of a better word, I feel like I’m “home.”
I’ve also brought back a first love… which is creating with my hands. I’ve been painting, drawing, and digging into that side of me that was always part of my life pre-computer.
Something magical happens when you follow your own internal guidance and are willing to trust the process. This is one of the hardest things to explain to people who haven’t experienced it or are stuck in the task side of ‘making things happen’. And let me clarify that there is a HUGE difference between doing the work and ‘making things happen’… when I’m inspired and doing the right work I’m way more detached from the outcome. There’s much less urgency around results. The process is the first reward and the results do what they’re going to do. Those rewards will show up on their own. This doesn’t mean I put something out into the world and then move on to the next thing.When I'm inspired and doing the right work I'm way more detached from the outcome.Click To Tweet
I’ve simply learned to TRUST.
Here’s an example:
After I launched my free course, Content Traffic Kickstarter, I looked at the results I’d gotten (over 500 subscribers to this course in less than 10 days) I realize this was invaluable to share. I had documented the process using a couple spreadsheets and calendar for things and asked my community if they were interested in learning how I did it.
They said yes and List Explosion was born (I’m still not super keen on the name, but changing it isn’t high on the priority list). I offered it as a paid class (for $49) and put it out there. I shared it with my group, emailed my list, and hosted the live class on August 2nd. I’ll be recording shorter videos for each of the modules shortly, but wanted to get it out there and get some feedback first. Which is why I priced it at $49. Once I break the class into smaller lessons (it was a two-hour live class), I’ll raise the price.
I didn’t overthink this, I didn’t create a ‘launch plan’ around it. I put it out there.
And it sold.
In fact, because of what is going on in my life personally, I probably did minimal promotion on this. And that’s O.K. I almost canceled the live class because of what is going on but trusted myself to follow what felt right, which was to get my mind off of everything else and connect with my tribe.
I’ll continue sharing and promoting the class, but for now, all is well.
Now here’s the flip side of all this “magic.”
I’m really frustrated that my personal life is consuming so much of my time.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m so very grateful that I don’t have a job that I have to go to, but I WANT to be working. I WANT to be creating. I’ve completely taken over my dining room table with my watercolors and drawing stuff. Every time I walk downstairs I look at it longingly (O.K., not totally, but I’ve never used the word longingly and couldn’t resist). I think to myself, “O.K., I’ll do some painting tonight.”
Then tonight comes and I simply want to check out (or my hands and wrists are tired from being on the computer all day).
My brain is DONE (which is part of why I love that we can ‘binge-watch’ shows now, it really helps me shift my mind at times).
Then my ego shows up reminding me that it’s AUGUST ALREADY!!! FOR THE LOVE OF GOD WOMAN… GITTER DONE!
While I don’t feed that voice, it’s still there.
Which brings me to my personal life
I’ve got some pretty serious stuff going on with my son right now.
And it’s breaking my heart.
There comes a point with your children when you realize you really have very little control over what happens in their life. Which is what I’m in the thick of right now. It’s been a challenging few years for us. I’ve always been extremely close to both my kids and think we have a unique relationship because of our circumstances. My daughter was 6 when my husband passed away and my son was 2 1/2. We became this tight trio, closer than I probably would have been with them had my husband been here (obviously I don’t have a crystal ball, so this is just an assumption). I was never one of those people that doubted having kids. I always wanted kids and never had any fear around parenting.
Life threw us a curveball 15 years ago and for the most part, felt like we’d gotten to the other side of things.
Then I realized…
… I’d gotten to the other side of things.
I can’t speak for my children.
I think I’d probably be a complete mess had I not spend the last 7 years consciously choosing to move through my life differently. I’ve always been pretty driven and outgoing, but along with that came a lot of drama and reactiveness. I was definitely a “suck it up soldier” kind of person. I thrived on being busy and as productive as humanly possible.
While there is still a part of me that is innately a ‘do-er’, all the work I’ve done has helped me learn to be present (and this is something I work on daily). Learning to surrender has been a huge challenge for me, but I’ve learned that I actually get through things so much faster when I stop resisting.
Which brings me to today.
Running my business as my life is going sideways
After initial reactions and emotions play out (which I let play out, instead of making up stories or predictions), I get as conscious as I can.
In this case, it’s setting my intentions.
I know myself well enough to know that I will get through this. That WE will get through this, as a family.
With so much out of my control right now, it’s helped me to make a list of things I can do:
- Reach out for support (family, therapist, friends)
- NOT talk about the situation when I need a reprieve
- Get as much rest as I can, regardless of what else ‘needs’ to be done
- Not judge myself (for what I ate, watched, for not walking the dogs… you get the point)
- Lots of water, drink my juices
- Do little things that bring me joy (I’ve already started burning a pumpkin candle in my room… with all the fires outside it looks like winter, even though it’s still hot and only August)
- Love on my dogs
- STAY connected to my community
- Work when I want to work, meaning, it’s O.K. to keep moving forward
I can tell you, with quite a bit of certainty, that this is not how I would have handled things even 5 years ago.
In many ways, I’m grateful I’m in this ‘rebuilding phase’ of my business because I don’t feel a ton of pressure. My frustration truly comes from a place of what I want to be doing, not what I should be doing.
So, in a very uncommon request to my audience, I could use all the love and support you feel like sending my way.
My Secret Project… which won’t be so secret after this
I’m stepping into the world of physical products.
As I’ve stepped fully into the world of content creation and marketing and have gotten back into my love of creating with my hands, I realized I wanted something that could combine both.
I’ve tested and used a handful of tools for planning and creating content, but all have been digital (which I love too, but isn’t as helpful as spending time with pen to paper).
I tested the bullet journal earlier this year and while I realized that the bullet journal system is a little too rigid for me, I fell in LOVE with the space of journaling. Meaning… there is an ENTIRE world of people who create around journaling and planning (doodling, drawing, creating, etc. I’ve gone way beyond a rabbit hole with this). I’ve subscribed to a handful of YouTube channels and Instagram profiles. I’m really, really in my happy place.
I’m not going to get into too many details with this yet, but I will be documenting the journey (follow me on Instagram to see pics… I’ve started doing some photos of the journaling process in general and am having a ton of fun with it).
We have some dates set in place (and by ‘we’, I am collaborating with someone on this, which I’ll share more about soon, but this episode is probably never going to end if I don’t wrap things up) and are going to do everything we can to hit those targets.
This will be launched via Kickstarter in the next couple of months.
Here we go!
First, if you’ve made it to the end of this episode, then Thank You. I don’t take it lightly that you choose to spend your time listening to the podcast. My hope with this episode is that it helps someone else and is a reminder that even though we have businesses we love, we also have lives. We’re human. There’s no getting through life without the hard stuff, just remember that how you go through the hard stuff is up to you.