I have been reminiscing over the last 15 months processing the triumphs, challenges and lessons learned as a young business. I have personally been pouring through tons of websites, newsletters and blogs from successful entrepreneurs to hopefully glean from their insight and business know how. It’s like there’s a hunger that’s been unleashed inside me to learn and grow in my design business to hone my brand, to remove the fluff and have a better handle on growing and succeeding.
Where do you even being when it comes to finding inspiration and focus? Can I just say that there is a ton of information out there to process? I have really had to pick and choose carefully how to best organize this info and right now I’m in the process of consolidating it all so I can come up with a plan of attack if you will.
One thing I am learning as I go through the “mental Rolodex” and hand written journal where I’ve been keeping all this newly required info is to determine how to refine my brand and services I offer.
There are so many amazing and talented individuals out there who provide branding, web development, graphic design, business coaching, and so much more but I have to reevaluate where I feel my strengths lie and from there determine how I should move forward.
So why am I writing all this and sharing my innermost thoughts with you?
I guess it’s because I need to come out and admit that I can’t keep trying to do it all and keep up with “Joneses” of entrepreneurship. As you know “comparison is the thief of joy” – we can’t continue to compare our blogs or businessess with others and expect to feel better about our efforts. According to Steven Furtick “one reason we struggle with insecurity: we’re comparing our behind the scenes to everyone else’s highlight reel.” We come out on the other side feeling deflated and less than.
I want to encourage you to learn from others successful businesses but don’t try to become them…. realize that they didn’t get to where they are overnight. There are tons of hours, sacrifices, failures that people go though before they get to that place of being a thriving blog/business. Being successful is about finding YOUR passion, YOUR fire and letting it be the guiding force that drives your blog or business.
If you struggle like I do with comparing yourself to others in your same/similar niche, here are some things you and I can work on to get us to the next level in our businesses:
- STOP COMPARING OURSELVES WITH OTHER DESIGNERS: It just needs to stop! We need to halt constantly comparing our work with others and not believe the lie that we are less than because we’re not offering the latest trending webinar, writing 5 blog posts a week, or creating the latest greatest online class. We all compare ourselves to some degree… whether we’re business owners, moms, dads, students, human….we all do it. I even admit I have had to stop looking at other designers websites so I can clear my head and focus on what I should be doing and what my clients need.
- FOCUS ON YOUR STRENGTHS: We all have strengths, this we love doing and are passionate about. The more I delve into web design I have come to the realization that I LOVE the design aspect of it but I don’t always love the more challenging coding aspects of it. I realize that I need to focus more on what I love and team up with developers that rock at creating code and who can be my iron that sharpens iron if you will.
- DEVELOP AND NURTURE NEW INTEREST: A new interest of mine has been learning the art of Lettering. I started finding interest in this a few months ago and recently took a class from SkillShare that really took my interest to greater heights. I’ve been batting around the idea of developing this skill and seeing if I can go further with it. Not sure yet if this is just one of those things I want to add to the list or if I should just keep it as a hobby. The great thing about learning lettering is that it can be another aspect of design that I can offer to clients in the future.
- GLEAN FROM SUCCESSFUL BUSINESS OWNERS: I am so impressed at how many young and knowledgeable business savvy women are out there in the blogosphere that have amazing insight into business and marketing. These women are about half my age and are blowing things out of the water with their business know how.
Keep in mind that being teachable at any age is a good thing and will help you build your business knowledge as you embrace that there’s always something to learn, improve upon and grow in.
I’d like to mention just a few amazing women that I have learned about and have gleaned useful business info from:
Take a minute to check out these awesome ladies and glean from their wisdom and insight. Now just a reminder to take their info into bite-size chunks…you don’t want to overwhelm yourself, start comparing and second-guessing yourself when you explore these sites.
Here’s are actionable NOW tips for you:
- Take some quiet time away from the computer, the noise of social media and get alone with a blank pad of paper and pen.
- Write out your thoughts and frustrations.
- Start listing things that you love doing in your blogging/business. Think about how you could take those things you love and possibly re-purpose them or repackage them into a new service you can offer on your website.
- Think about your target audience. Has it changed? Who are you trying to reach.
- Consider what specific adjustments or changes you can make this week to begin on a new path of growth & inspiration for your business.
- Consider calling a friend you can bounce you ideas off of.
- Connect with a mastermind group of people in your niche who you can get encouragement from and share with.
I would love to hear back from you things you are wanting to shift focus on in your business or blog? What is your passion and who inspires you as an entrepreneur? What are some change you can take now to grow your blog/business and gain new inspiration?