The easy answer: absolutely nothing and I don’t mean that in a good way.
The thing is that when you don’t plan properly for breaks, hiatuses, leaves, etc. you leave room for things to either become very stagnant, stop altogether, implode or collapse. This is why it’s so beyond important to have the proper processes and systems in place so that your business (and blog, if content marketing is a part of your business) can continue to run, even when life takes you by storm.
So what happened to me, shouldn’t have, but I learned a valuable and hard, but necessary lesson from this happening. And the best part that out of this blemish on my life and goals as a small business owner and aspiring entrepreneur, is that it pushed me into a new purpose for my business and the Bliss & Faith brand.
For a long time, I had wanted to make systems and processes the focal point of what I wanted my brand to focus on. I wanted to help fellow mom and bloggers who aspire to run their own businesses or monetize their blogs, set up systems processes that would allow them to do so, all while managing a busy life with a slew of priorities, like spouses, kids, full-time jobs, school, etc. The reason being was because that is a lot like what my life looked like.
However, as much as I wanted to focus on that, I kept teetering back and forth with design and branding (which I absolutely love and will continue to discuss here on the blog) and occasionally discussing the struggles of being a busy, overwhelmed wife and mom. This was because design and branding were, and have always been my safe place. I didn’t have to get too personal with either of those topics to talk in order to educate others on them.
[Tweet “If you teeter back and forth on what you want to do; it’s time to rethink and reapproach. “]
The Struggle is Real
Personally, this is something I’m still struggling with. A lot of the time, I’ve felt so much pressure to share more of “my story”, because that’s I see everyone else doing…or at least all of the big players in my industry. I’d rather focus on the facts, that divulging extraneous information about myself. The thing is though is that you can’t build trust if people don’t know you, people can’t get to know you without you sharing some amount of personal details about you.
[Tweet “You can’t build trust if people don’t know you, make it easy for them to do so; be accessible.”]
No matter the platform; social media, blogging, video (live-streaming or a platform like Youtube), people want to know the person behind the brand. This is all the more reason why platforms like Snapchat and the new Instagram Stories are so popular.
As I digress, my point of saying all this is to say that looking back, I really wish I had better prepared for the unknown and unforeseen things that have transpired in my life over the past year. If I’d had those systems and processes set up when busy or stressful times occurred, my business and blog could have not only have continued to grow, but it could have actually been profitable (which it wasn’t…more on that later).
[Tweet “No matter the platform; social media, blogging, video — people want to know you, not your brand. “]
One of the main reasons that my business wasn’t profitable is because one, I had no products or services offerings for my target market.
Worst off, I had no funnels set up for any of my lead magnets :::face palm::: to lead into any kind of product or service to be profitable. So yeah, basically, I just did not have my business life together. I got overwhelmed by the sheer thought of sitting down at my computer to draft a post. I felt that no matter what I did, there were never enough hours in the days to research, write, and edit posts.
[Tweet “We can’t make more hours in the day, but we can maximize on the one’s we have.”]
All or Nothing
As per usual when it comes to my personality, I’m all or nothing, go big or go home, so if I can’t do something right, I don’t want to do it at all…even if it’s a dream or goal of mines. This notion applies to nearly everything I do and everything I’ve done in my life thus far, which means, yes, I put an immense amount of pressure on myself, and yes, anxiety ensues because of this. I can honestly say, that a lot of that “overwhelming” feeling lately has really been anxiety.
[Tweet “Just because you can’t do something perfect doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it — perfection doesn’t exist.”]
Nonetheless, it’s easier to accept being “overwhelmed” than disguising the fact that your anxiety-stricken.
For someone like me, who struggles with anxiety; having systems and processes is essential because I also lack discipline. This means that the second things start to go awry, I seek my safe place, procrastination. So for me, anxiety + lack of discipline = procrastination, it’s something I have to work through every day with my blog and business.
One of the main reasons why this is the case is because of the season of life I’m in at the moment. It’s a stressful, yet fun and delightful season full of twists and turns and new challenges every day. That’s what life looks like for me as a wife and mom to two under two.
[Tweet “Life is full of delightful twists and turns; embrace each every one of them.”]
Adding extra things, like blogging and running a business, to my plate would only make all of that even more exhaustingly consuming, right? You would think, but if there’s one thing I’ve learned from this unintentional break, is that I need those “extra things”, those things that I need to do and pursue to help me feel more fulfilled, and go figure less stressed, overwhelmed, and anxiety-stricken. Yes, I’m talking about that “me-time” or “mommy-time” phenomenon, it’s a real thing…for reals. However, that me-time doesn’t come naturally, or without planning or help.
Big Pill to Swallow
This was a hard fact for me to accept for a long time because for some reason I thought that if things didn’t come naturally (without extra effort that is) that they weren’t meant to be. I’d always subscribed to the philosophy that if something was meant for you, it would flow into your life easily, and at that point is when you put in the hard work.
I basically was like, “why try so hard and push and push, if it seems like it’s inevitable that it’s not working out?”. This was an incredibly lazy mindset, because even if something isn’t meant to come to fruition, it doesn’t mean that you at least shouldn’t try it. – Better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all, right? Trying, whether we succeed or fail, is how we learn, grow and get better as a whole.
[Tweet “Even if something isn’t meant to come to fruition, it doesn’t mean that you at least shouldn’t try it.”]
[Tweet “Better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all.”]
[Tweet “Trying, whether we succeed or fail, is how we learn, grow and get better as a whole.”]
Only when you give it your all, and then realize it’s not working out, is when you should consider going in a different direction.
If something’s not meant to be, it will work itself out and there will be no question as to whether you should continue it or not, not trying at all because you “think” it won’t work is an excuse not to try. Raises hand…guilty! ??
[Tweet “If something’s not meant to be, it will work itself out as to whether you should continue it or not.”]
What I’ve learned through all of this is that it takes hard work to start things, maintain them, and make them successful. Nothing great in life comes and stays without hard work.
[Tweet “It takes hard work to start things, maintain them, and make them successful.”]
[Tweet “Nothing great in life comes and stays without hard work.”]