Welcome to The Spark Show! In this episode, I’m going to be talking about my biggest lessons of 2019! At the time of this recording, we’re about three weeks out from 2020 and I’ve been doing a lot of reflection and planning for the New Year.
So today I wanna talk about X biggest lessons that I learned this year:
I worked a lot this year and there were definitely times that I worked way too much. There were times when I kept going when I shouldn’t and because I pushed myself so hard, I went into burnout mode. This for me means having periods where I didn’t feel like doing anything, feeling uninspired and not like taking action at all.
Lesson: The lesson here is to manage my time and my energy better. I’m going to be stricter on my work hours, give myself more time to complete projects so that I’m not trying to meet unrealistic deadlines. I’m going to take one full day off a week and give myself space for breaks.
This year, we made some key shifts in our business and really focused on human-to-human connection. Even though we’re so focused on social media and digital media, nothing beats real-life connection and direct contact.
I’ve found that so many people are so touched and surprised when I message them directly or they get on a call with me, it’s so rare nowadays where people can be so removed from their business and from their community.
Lesson: Next year, I’m going to continue to focus on connection and making things more personal. Whether that’s doing more direct messaging and opening up the opportunity for interaction with me, I think this is what my community needs and is asking for and I want to deliver that value to them.
I said a lot of NOs this year - to events, brand partnerships, meetups, anything that did not make sense for me and for my business, and didn’t feel good to say yes to.
I used to go to a lot of events, but it takes up a lot of time and it’s a lot of work to get ready, attend, cover it on social and it was very helpful when I was first starting out. But now I get invited to so many of them that if I went to all of them, I would neglect my clients and would not be protecting my energy to show up for them.
I also get reached out to by brands on a daily basis. I’ve set up my business to a point where I get a lot of inbound requests that I’m very grateful for, but it doesn’t make sense for me to agree to posting something for free, when there are other brands that are willing to pay me for my work. This doesn’t mean that I won’t post for free or for product exchange, but there has to be a real good reason for me to do “free” work when I’m getting paid offers.
I’ve also had to say NO to meeting up with people. Don’t get me wrong because I think it’s very important to build your network and to nurture connections, but you don’t need to do that with everyone.
One thing that always happens when people learn about what I do is that they want to meet up, get coffee, “pick my brain” (which I hate btw, because it means helps someone for free), when it turns into a free consulting session. The thing is, this takes time and energy away from my paying clients.
Not only does it take up time, which is my most valuable asset that I can never get back, but I also don’t feel good when someone expects me to work for them for free. That’s like going to work and not getting a paycheck in two weeks or going to a grocery store and not paying for what you bought - you can’t buy the owner a coffee and say, “thanks for the food, I appreciate it.” So if this is you, I invite you to be aware of this if you’re doing this or putting someone in this situation because it’s not fun.
There are exceptions of course such as if someone wants to volunteer their time or mentor you for free, but in most cases, if this is a business - then you have to be charging people for your time and expertise.
Lesson: So I think I did a good job this year of saying NO to things that did not make sense for me and my business but there were sometimes that I said yes out of guilt and I felt worse afterwards so I’m going to be more aware of this moving forward.
Putting yourself first is not a bad thing. In fact, it’s the best thing you can do for everyone else around you, especially the people you love. When you take care of yourself, you’re able to show up as your best self to everyone else. You can’t take care of others when you’re not taken care of.
There were times where I definitely put work first or other people first and I did not feel good about it. I realize now that self-care is not selfish, it’s actually the opposite! The more self-care that you do, the more that you can help others. Most of us are guilty about putting every single person or thing first before ourselves. But like they say, you gotta put your own oxygen mask on first before you help someone else...even if that means your family.
Lesson: For the next year, I’m committing to practicing self-care every single day. This could mean taking a long bath, getting a message, or even something simple like going to yoga or just sitting in silence. I know that the more I do it, the more people around me will benefit.
I accomplished a lot this year! I did so many amazing things and I realized that I didn’t even really share that much about everything that I was able to do.
That’s something that a lot of us do sometimes is that we don’t like to celebrate ourselves because it might come off as “bragging” to others. We don’t want to post because we’re afraid of getting judged. They might say, “Oh look at her posting again about this and that.”
But really, celebrating yourself and your accomplishments are so important! First of all, it gives you the opportunity to express gratitude for all the blessings that you’ve had this year, and for making it this far! Some people don’t even get this far.
It gives you the chance to reflect on the best moments of the year and really think about those things that used to be these big goals. There’s a quote that I’ve seen floating around, “Remember when you wanted what you have now” or something like that.” Oftentimes, we have these goals, wishes and dream and when they finally come true, we’re like okay next goal, next dream. Instead of realizing, OMG I made that happened - yay me!
Celebrating is definitely something I’ve been working on this year and will continue to work on next year! Not only does it feel good to celebrate your wins (like seeing your medals and trophies, for some of us - we don’t have a victory wall), but it also helps you with gratitude and to attract more of those wins in your life.
Lesson: Before moving on to the next goal, I’m going to celebrate my wins with a dance party or treating myself to something and really feeling and living in the moment. I deserve a celebration and I’m not going to let myself skip it!
That’s it for today’s episode! In the next one, I’m going to go deeper into celebrating wins and share with you my list of wins. Thank you so much for listening, I’ll see you in the next one!
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