Joan Didion once said “I don't know what I think until I write it down” and I’ve never found a quote to be more true in my life than this one. If you’re one of my clients then you’ll be very accustomed to hearing me say “Can I get back to you via email?” Not because I don’t want to talk about it. Simply because I don’t know how I feel until I write it down.
The way I felt about 2017 is much the same. I didn’t really know how I felt until I began to write about it. And as I began to write, I realised my reflections could be helpful to others too!
I get honest in this post. I talk about clients, sales and all the behind-the-scenes struggles that I do (mostly) prefer to keep behind-the-scenes. Why? Because it’s helped me to reflect. It’s helped me to see places where I can improve and highlighted the achievements that I should also be celebrating.
And I hope that reading this allows you to see the things that ‘we all go through’. I hope it encourages you to take a moment to look back on your year. And I hope you can join me in celebrating too.
Because this journey that we’re on is one wild ride and if we don’t take a moment to look back and reflect, preferably in the company of the people you love, then what’s the point?
So here goes… a painfully honest review of my last year in business!
Quarter One (January - March)
After a short stint working a part-time job, I’m back in my business full-time and feeling really excited at the possibilities.
When I look back at this first quarter of the year, the word that comes to mind is space. Space for new ideas. Space to create. Space to explore.
The space also allows me to get clear on who I am and how I best support my clients. I spend a lot of time working on the foundations of my business and writing a tonne of ’systems and processes’ guides.
Want to know more about the systems and processes I use in my business? Click here!
This is also the quarter when I first come up with the idea for Sacred Social and invest in e-Course Launch Formula to support me in creating it (the single biggest investment that I’ve put into my business so far).
My favourite moments of Quarter One:
- Launching a new email series (which turns out to be very popular)
- Committing to regular, fortnightly blog posts
- Getting support with my own social media (one of the best decisions that I make this year)
- Mastermind retreat in Brisbane (where I first speak of my idea for Sacred Social)
- Working with dream clients (including the dream client - you know the one that’s top of the list every time you write it?)
The things that I found most challenging in Quarter One:
- Trusting that I will be financially supported in my business
- Feeling drawn to take many different directions
- Leaning into the unknown
If I were to give this quarter a season, it would be… a healthy dose of both Spring and Summer.
Quarter Two (April - June)
After laying the foundations in the first quarter of the year, the second quarter is all about growth.
My social media management services start to boom and I get a rush of clients. The energy of this quarter is high and the increase in clients allows me to hire a new team member to support me with my clients.
Hiring a new team member is a huge learning curve and teaches me so much about the work that I do and how I want to do it. It also allows me to get clear on my signature social media process.
While it feels good to be supported in my business, I realise that so much of the work that I do with my clients needs to be done by me. It doesn’t feel right to outsource it and I realise that my capacity to take on social media management clients is far less than what I had imagined. I consciously shift focus in this time, decrease my work load and start looking at more leveraged forms of income (Sacred Social!)
But before I do that, the increased support in my business does allow me to take a week off work and go to Tasmania with my partner Dale.
While the majority of my energy goes to supporting my clients and on-boarding a new team member in this quarter, I also continue to study e-Course Launch Formula and refine my idea and create a course outline for Sacred Social.
My favourite moments of Quarter Two:
- Working with lots of new social media management clients (and learning lots in the process)
- Feeling supported by my team and increase in finances
- Taking a week off to go to Tasmania with Dale
- Committing to my idea for Sacred Social
The things that I found most challenging in Quarter Two:
- Trying to grow my business without burning out or compromising the quality of my work
- All the fears that came up as I prepared to create and launch Sacred Social
- Burning out by the end of the quarter
If I were to give this quarter a season, it would be… Summer moving into Autumn.
Quarter Three (July - September)
With all the growth that came my way in Quarter Two, I crash pretty hard in this next quarter. It’s definitely a time of retreat… but I use this time to go into creation. I slow down with client work and focus all of my energy on Sacred Social.
In July, we (read: my gorgeous designer Elle from JuJu Creative Hub) begin creating the sales page and membership site. I write a full draft of my sales page and commit to weekly blog posts and emails that explore the seven pillars of sacred social media.
In August, I fly to the Gold Coast for a photoshoot with the beautiful Michelle from Eyes of Love Photography. With my gorgeous photos, Elle begins to build my sales page and I continue to draft, write and edit content. I also map out my entire social media launch plan and start to gather everything for the launch.
Want to know more about my social media launch plan? Click here!
In September, I run a live version of my email series and end it with a live training call announcing the launch of Sacred Social. My social media erupts with all the pink and purple posts as I try to communicate all the Sacred Social means to me (and you too!)
I struggle through the first week of the launch and wait 10 days before my first sale (it comes through on the last day of early bird). Luckily I booked in a weekend away with my best friend and partner Dale so I enjoy the wait from a cute Airbnb in Torquay!
I get two more enrolments (part of the Bring Your Own Business Bestie sale) and gift another eight spaces to clients, course contributors and scholarship winners.
My favourite moments of Quarter Three:
- Investing a lot of time, energy and money into my business and creative projects
- Working with Elle on my sales page (she’s a dream to work with and I love seeing my projects come to life!)
- Photoshoot with Michelle who made me feel so comfortable and just like myself
- Going into my creative bubble and spending lots of time writing content and copy
- Writing about how social media changed my life and being able to share that with others
- Running a live training call with an incredible group of women
- Launching Sacred Social and feeling more aligned and alive with my work than I ever have!
The things that I found most challenging in Quarter Three:
- Watching my business growth plateau as I dived into Sacred Social
- Lack of grounded energy because I was so excited about my launch
- Keeping the launch vibes high while I was waiting for my very first sale
If I were to give this quarter a season, it would be… mostly Winter with a hint of Spring.
Quarter Four (October - December)
With my birthday in October and all the fun that happens towards the end of the year, I have always loved this quarter the most. Then this year happened… and the fourth quarter completely kicked my butt.
The only word that would sum up this quarter would be shifts.
October starts strong with the end of my launch and the start of delivery for Sacred Social. I welcome eleven beautiful women into the course and set out to create the content. I didn’t get the time to create the content before I launched Sacred Social so I create the module content week to week. While I have the outline and a really clear idea on what I want to say, I still have to write the content, film the videos and create the worksheets (plus engage in the Facebook community and run live calls each week). This process really stretches me and I’m forced me to stay ‘in’ Sacred Social even when inspiration is calling in other areas.
While I struggle to create all of the content for Sacred Social (and fight with my very loud inner perfectionist each and every week), I become really aware of all the things that aren’t working in my business. Creating Sacred Social has been such a big part of my year (and I put everything aside to do it) but when I finally got some space, I realise my business isn’t lighting me up as much as it should.
Suddenly I feel like everything that I’ve worked for, everything that I've wanted and everything that I’ve achieved throughout the year is being pulled out from underneath me. And while I’ve been talking about 'making changes' all year, I haven’t taken the actions and the universe has something to say about it!
This looks like a huge amount of loss in my business - saying goodbye to beloved clients who I’ve worked with all year. Clients who mean the absolute world to me. Clients who aren’t just ‘clients’ but really loved friends. And while I know everything is falling apart so that it can come back together in a more aligned way, I grieve the part of my business that is dying.
So I take a step back in my business and I decide to give myself some space (space that I haven’t had in my business since the start of the year). I embrace the unknown, sit in the void and begin to dream up the next level of my business.
I also go to Newcastle for an end-of-year retreat with my mastermind girls - with such a different energy to the one we held in Brisbane at the start of the year. There is lots of reflection, lots of contemplation and lots of space for new and exciting ideas to come.
And if all of that isn’t enough, I also move into a new office space. After working from our bedroom for over a year, Dale renovates the caravan in our back yard and turns it into an office for me!
My favourite moments of Quarter Four:
- Celebrating my 25th birthday
- Moving into a new office space named #bobthevan!
- Live calls with the girls from Sacred Social
- Taking it easy and creating some space in my business
- Mastermind retreat in Newcastle
The things that I found most challenging in Quarter Four:
- Creating A LOT of content in a short period of time
- Saying goodbye to parts of my business
- Feeling unsure about the direction of my business
If I were to give this quarter a season, it would be… a difficult Spring with a lot of rain and weeks and weeks of Winter weather.
So as a whole, this year has been about:
- Diving fully into the creation process and fully committing myself to it
- Working with the most beautiful, inspiring women in the world (seriously!)
- Investing in myself and my business more than ever before
- Working really, really hard for something then realising it’s not what I truly want
- Burning things down so they can come together in a more aligned way
And here is what's coming up next:
While I’m still very much ‘in the void’ and dealing with a lot of unknown, here is what I believe the next year will hold for me:
- More opportunities to get involved in the Sacred Social movement (you can follow along at @sacredsocial)
- Launching and running my Sacred Social program (be the first to know by signing up here)
- Focusing on 1:1 social media coaching and stepping into a ‘teacher' role
- Navigating network marketing as a way to increase the support and sustainability in my life
And this will all be done in alignment to my word of the year (which is FULL) and two mantras for the year:
Do the things that you believe are impossible.
What if the answer isn’t more? What if the answer is less?
I hope this blog post has been an interesting look into the behind-the-scenes of my business and inspired you to reflect and celebrate on the year that you have had too!