Word for 2018

Happy new year, Friends!

If you‘be been following me around in the last couple years you’ll now that ever year I choose a word the sets the tone for the upcoming 12 months. Last year, my word of the year was “Forward” and the year definitely lived up to its name.

In 2017 I laid a foundation for the current year. A lot of work had been done in 2017 to hopefully make 2018 the best year yet!

I’ve been thinking about what my word for 2018 would be for months now. I know this might seem silly but it’s a big deal to me. I just feel like it’s really important for me to have a running theme. Before I reveal my word for 2018 I’d like to lay a little bit of back story on how I chose it.

In October and November I reflected extensively on the past year. I set my goals based on what I have accomplished, what I didn’t get to cross off my list, and the foundation I set for the upcoming years. Because of that, I realized that this year’s word for 2018 is BUILD.

* I want to build a happy family with my husband

* I want to build successful businesses

* I want to build my relationship with God and involve Him in everything I do

* I want to build relationships with people

* I want to build confidence in myself

What is your word for the year?


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Why Winging it Doesn’t Always Work

I’ve always been the type to “wing it.” I work well under pressure and  come up with my best ideas when the going gets tough.

My process of thinking is really hard to explain. I’m organized and messy at the same time. My mind is extremely messy, a million thoughts running through my head constantly. I’m very spontaneous. if one of the million ideas in my head sounds like an excellent idea (good isn’t good enough, got to be excellent lol) I jump in head first without really hesitating. But while being spontaneous is a lot of fun, it isn’t really good for business – specifically business growth.

Photo by: Matt Henry Photo

Running 4 businesses isn’t easy. Almost every minute of my waking day (actually sometimes even when I’m asleep) I am being pulled in so many different directions. My email inbox alone holds new challenges and problems that need to be solved. I come across lots of different people every single day (restaurant work perks). Because of this the possibility of new opportunities arise every day. Not to mention the endless possibilities that social media has put at our finger tips. People reach out wanting to pick my brain, ask for my advice, and I love every minute of it. Definitely wouldn’t have it any other way. I love helping and interacting with people! 

But, you can see how I can get easily distracted and deter from my long term goals and my to do list.

See, the tools that keep goals and tasks aren’t as interesting as people are. To me at least. I’d rather socialize than read and reflect on goals. But as a business owner I can’t go with the flow and wing it every day. A girl’s got to buckle down and get work done or her businesses won’t grow!

Every business owner’s thought process is different. But for me personally I have to think from the outside in. Let me explain.

Let’s say, for instance, that I want to start a successful blog. Great! That right there is proof of thinking from the outside in. I see the end product and then I have to break that end product into steps. Outside. In.

So let’s figure out how to start a successful blog. Let’s answer the basic questions: what, why, where, who?

What? A successful blog.

Why? Do you love to write? Take photos? Do you want to create your own schedule? Do you want to become an entrepreneur? Do you have a passion with sharing? Documenting? Do you want to make a million dollars? Be completely honest with yourself and figure out why you are starting this.

Where? Your blog will probably be online. What blog service will you be using?

Who? Who is going to buy what you’re selling? Who will contribute to your success? Who is your customer?

Those basic questions are you solving the big problem but answering the minuscule detailed questions. That’s how I think. End product first (outside), create the plan (in).

Naturally, it’s hard to be honest with ourselves and to answer detailed questions. Winging it won’t get you to focus on figuring out the answers. But this is one of the keys to successful businesses! Focus, drive, small steps, and little victories – let’s work on hustling for success together.

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How to Create a Blog Schedule

I can’t believe I’ve been blogging for 7 years. When I first started, my purpose for blogging was different. It was to share my knowledge as a means to advertise my products and services. In 2007, blogging wasn’t very much except to share your work online and journal. As blogging began to evolve topics started to change and so did I. The world of blogging was becoming more than just journaling and promotion, it was a place to share authentically. Quite honestly, I didn’t know how to adapt fast enough. My goals were the same as when I started (promote, promote, promote) and slowly I realized that writing became therapeutic for me. 

After rethinking about my goals as an entrepreneur I realized that blogging means a lot more to me than I thought it would. It’s my tool to reach people in a way that I hope will inspire and educate. So I dedicated that I wanted to change the approach of my blog from sharing to advertise to sharing to share. Only thing is as much as I tried to stay on top of it I wasn’t being consistent. I’d blog on a super strict schedule and then fall off for months. Then I’d come back and do it all over again. On top of that my blog was all over the place, if you read my old posts you’ll see it’s true. My blog wasn’t easy to follow and the posts were very unrelated.

This year I decided that I wanted to utilize my blog to share as much of what I’ve learned and experienced. I wanted to be authentically me and give others the courage to do that too. I have a responsibility to create regular content, but when I tried to stay on top of it I would just get overwhelmed. So I realized I needed to create a schedule.

I use my iCal to manage the due dates of my blog posts. I chose to use a digital calendar instead of planning in my Happy Planner so I can just click and drag if I want to move posts around. Once I can visually see when things are due I can use Todoist to break things down. I usually outline my post first, take photos for the post, and write. So I’ll usually plan out the due dates for those sub tasks in Todoist. Then I’ll outline posts in Evernote and the write them in WordPress. 

If you’re a blogger or blogger I highly recommend you come up with a schedule and plan so that you can get content out to your audience regularly. I don’t know if you’re like me but I feel a responsibility to share as much as I can while I can so carving out time to write is really important to me. Plus, it’s so much fun! 😜


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