Posts Tagged ‘business tips’

10/29/13

Saying No.

This contributor post was written by Tiffany Han.

We talk about the power of saying yes a lot when it comes to creative businesses.

Say yes and figure it out later.
Raise your hand even if you’re not ready.
Take advantage of opportunities that come your way. Saying yes is how you get ahead.

All of this is true…and yet, there is also power that comes with saying no.

Saying no to the things that no longer serve you. Saying no to so-called opportunities that actually result in you doing a lot of extra work for not much corresponding reward.

Saying no to people who suck your energy. And your time. And your money.

Saying no to the things that are not good for you – relationships, habits, tasks – so that you can say yes to the things that ARE infinitely better for your business, your life, and your psyche.

It’s easy to become a yes-man when you’re starting out. Often we’re so excited about all! the! possibility! that we take on every project that becomes available and forget to keep the vision of our business in the forefront. We get so consumed with the day-to-day tasks of doing the job that we forget about our role as business owner and visionary.

And sometimes, the only way to regain power as the Person in Charge is to start saying no: Turning down the pain-in-the-butt client who (you know!) is going to drive you crazy and be 100% not worth it in the long run. Saying no, thank you to the “unpaid but good exposure” photography gig. Passing on the super discounted order for your aunt’s co-worker who you’ll never hear from again.

Today’s challenge: Take a look at what you’re working on these days, especially the things that are taking up the majority of your time and energy, and ask yourself: “How is this serving me?” If you don’t like your answer, it’s time to start saying no.

PS. Heads up y’all! Today is my birthday (whoo hoo!) and in celebration of my 34 years, I’m offering a 1-day birthday sale on my upcoming 11/4 How to Say No webinar and Social Media Rehab Workbook.

You may know Tiffany Han, CPCC as a life and business coach, but really she helps highly-creative women wake up happy and have more fun. Every single day. She’s been called the Mary Poppins of creative businesses and a professional Yoda by her clients. If you’re feeling the growing pains of running your creative business and are ready to STOP spinning your wheels and actually get stuff done, her Good Morning Glitterbomb daily inspiration emails are sure to light your fire.

08/13/13

Ain't Nobody Got Time for That

Last week, Tiffany wrote a post here that you may have read, called The Power of Taking a Break. This particular post couldn’t have come at a better time for lots of you who responded in the comments, but also, it couldn’t have come at a better time for me. So today, I’m kind of piggy-backing on Tiffany’s post and sharing my thoughts on the subject…

Lately, there’s been a theme amongst the blog buds in my little circle and nearly everyone is saying the same thing. Me included. And that is this…”Man, I need a break!” or “I’m so busy I can hardly handle it.” or “What was I thinking when I agreed to add more to-dos to my already never-ending to-do list.

We commit ourselves to too many outside projects and then go crazy trying to get them done before the deadline. Sound familiar?

The projects always get done, even if it means a few tears and a couple of sleepless (or almost sleepless) nights. But is it really worth it, if you end of pulling your hair out to get everything done?

And with all of us so quick to pile on the projects and interviews and online events and offline events and…well, you get the point…why doesn’t it also come naturally to pile on breaks throughout the day, build in more downtime, and plan (and actually take) a vacation every once in a while?

Ain’t nobody got time for that. Duh.

But really, what I should be saying is that nobody is MAKING time for that.

Of course, I understand why this happens because I do it too. When you’re running your own business, and you’re your own boss, and you’re the one responsible for making any (and all) of the cash coming in, it’s tough to say no when an opportunity pops up. You want to say yes to the things that will make you more money, help you achieve more ‘success’, get you more ‘exposure’, and maybe even a free ticket to XYZ.

But where does all that leave you, ultimately? Most likely, walking down the street to insanely busy town/ my house is a mess town / when will I regain my sanity town.

I don’t know about you, but I am done going down those roads. And I’m definitely done saying that I’ll take a break next month, when things slow down, only to realize that I’ve been saying that since January.

So tomorrow I’m taking a little trip to California with Jeff. Away from the computer. To squeeze in a little rafting, a day trip to Yosemite, and a quick visit with family before headed back home this weekend. FYI- I’ve already scheduled my posts for the rest of the week. So posting will continue as normal while I’m away.

I won’t be waiting for things to slow down on their own, I’m just going to force them to.

And I think that is the point I’m really trying to make here. We’re all busy. We all take on a whole heck of lot of stuff, that fills our schedules to the point of craziness. BUT we can change that pretty easily. And decide to stop, TAKE A BREAK, and let things go…for a few minutes, a few hours, or even a few days. AND even if your current to-do list is longer than Santa’s on Christmas Eve.

Just schedule it into your calendar, if it helps, and treat it as you would a client project. Downtime is just as important to your business as anything else. And trust me, those emails (and whatever else is on your to do list) will still be there when you get back.

Who knows, maybe you’ll even be excited to answer them once you’ve had a little time away.

So what do you say? Will you make time for a break in your busy schedule this month?

P.S. I found the image above, by Sara Eshak, thanks to this post from Gabriel of The Artful Desperado – great read on finding success in your 30s if you have a couple of minutes.

10/04/12

Do you know Jenny Batt from Hank & Hunt?

I bet you do, especially if you’re a DIY lover, (if you aren’t familiar with her work already, head over here to see some of her recent projects). She is everywhere these days, creating DIYs for Oh Happy Day, One Charming Party, Hello Bee, Ruffled…and…well, I’ll just stop the list here, but I could list more.

So anyway, aside from being a freelance DIY superstar, she is also a good friend of mine. And we recently put together a four part series on the Alt Summit blog all about freelancing, since it’s a topic we both know a good bit about.

If you’ve ever wanted to know how to land paid freelance positions on your favorite sites, how guest posting can grow your blog leaps and bounds, or simply how to juggle it all once you get started, make sure you read these posts. And leave a comment either here or on the actual posts themselves if you have any specific questions you want answered.

Here are the post topics Jenny and I wrote about for Alt:

1. Guest Posting  + Being a Contributor 101: Want to start at the beginning? You’ll find the basics of working as a freelancer in this post.

2. The Five Steps for Contributor Success: Step 1 is to always create amazing content. Always. Get steps 2-5 right here.

3. How to Land a Great Freelance PositionThe longest post of the series! And probably the juiciest. Jenny and I share tips for both paid and non-paid freelance gigs in this one.

4. How to Create Great Content For Other Sites While Growing Your Own Blog: Ah, balance is always a hard one, right? This last article in the series talks about 4 specific things you can do to grow your blog, while writing for others at the same time.

That amazing cat photo above is from Leah Reena Goren. Her cat’s name is Baby Moses!

P.S. Are you going to Alt in January?