This is month 4 of my 1-year journey to figure out what I want. I’m on a mission to be happy and content every single day.
I’ve said this a thousand times this month, but I hate the word “launch” when it comes to business. I’m not going to space. I just got a new website and created a product. That said, it feels as though I might be going to space with how much this is stressing me out. But I’ve drawn a lot of parallels between launching this thing and the rest of my life.
No One Knows What They Are Doing
The biggest lie that social media tells us is that anyone has any clue how to be a human in the world. Because truth be told, absolutely no one know what they are doing and we are all literally making it all up.
Now, that can feel discouraging for like, a second. But I actually mean for it to be super uplifting. Think about it: we get to decide every day what the next right thing is. For our lives, our families, and our work.
Launching this new site and product made me feel like everyone else knows how to do this. Everyone but me. It made me feel like there was some handbook out there that other online marketers were following, step by step, and I don’t get to have access to it.
And then I realized that even if they had this elusive handbook, I didn’t care.
I preach to my clients that they need to stand out. And in order to do that, they need to figure out what makes them different. So I’m taking my own advice here. What makes me different is that I’m not following the rule book. I’m not growing my email list in a traditional way or paying for ads or using social media the way other people do (but for real, is it possible to gain traction on Instagram without posting a selfie every day? I’m genuinely asking. NO shade, I just can’t look that good all the time and would love to know another successful strategy.).
I’ve let this launch get in my head A LOT over the past month. I’ve let it be overwhelming and become a bigger deal mentally than it is in real life. I’ve had to talk myself off a lot of panic-y ledges and remind myself that just like everyone else, I’m making it up, both in life and in business. There is no failure, only lessons. I get to decide the next right step.
Always Think of the Worst Case Scenario
I’m just FULL of encouragement this month. This is genuinely my favorite piece of advice to give or to receive, especially when it comes to business. I’m not saying to expect the worst, but envisioning it happening can sometimes make it feel less scary.
Those panic-y ledges? My best tactic at backing away from them was thinking about the absolute worst thing that could happen. And then I realized I already had a plan for how to handle it. My worst case scenario is that I launch this thing and not a soul buys it. Or maybe even worse, I launch it, people think I’m a fraud, and then no one ever hires me again for copywriting.
And you know what? I’m good at other things. This isn’t the Holy Grail of professions or The One And Only Thing That Rachel Greiman Is Qualified To Do. It’s not life or death. It’s work.
(May I suggest actually NOT thinking about the worst case scenario for your actual life? Because we all know how it ends and that’s just depressing.)
So I Was Supposed to be Grateful …
Last month I wrote about how I was going to keep a gratitude journal and write in it every day. That … didn’t happen. I gave it a goooood try for a week and then honestly, I completely forgot.
I’m sure some of the anxiety would have been alleviated if I took a few minutes for mindfulness each morning. But I find that mindfulness is the first thing on the to-do list to get bumped when I get overwhelmed. Logically, it just feels like my time would be better spent accomplishing tasks than sitting down and “quieting my mind.”
I know there’s all the science out there to prove me wrong but I got C’s in science. Also, I’m taking year because I knew there would be missteps along the way and things I needed to try more than once to get right. There’s time for gratitude and mindfulness and I’m committed to trying again. Eventually.
Something I did accomplish that was HUGE for me was cleaning out and setting up my office. We’ve been here since March and this is the very first time that I can see the floor. I cleaned! I organized! I rearranged! I bought myself a plant! I’m like a real adult business owner.
I do honestly believe that having this dedicated space will help keep my business contained rather than exploding into the rest of my life, both figuratively and literally. I had 4 work stations in our house before I did this. Just the one will do.
So I go forth with a clean office and the craziest month of business I’ve had in 5 years behind me. This journey to find contentment has NOT been a linear climb and I’m hoping the hardest part is in the rearview. I’m happy to know what I’m made of and thrilled to not put it to the test again any time soon.
My Round-Up of #TheLaunch Resources
A life book I liked … Eleanor Oliphant is completely fine by Gail Honeyman. I say liked because I’m almost done with this book and while it was entertaining and really well-written, it has left me more than a bit depressed. I’m hoping for a wild ride of an ending. (Tell me it cheers up a bit?!)
This is usually where I tell you about a business book I liked … But for the second month in a row, I didn’t have time to read that much this month.
A memoir I got on the waitlist for … Dear Girls by Ali Wong. Again with the whole lacking time thing this month. But I’m more than a little excited for this. I got the Audible version because Ali reads it herself and those are just THE BEST kinds of books. Her Netflix specials slay me and I can’t wait for this! (Warning: she’s faaaaaairly inappropriate. And by faaaaaairly, I mean don’t watch it Mom.)
Two podcasts I loved …
That’s What She Said! by Kristen Kalp. In this episode, she tells us how to work for only three hours a day. WUT.
Why Should I? podcast with guest Kate Baer. I’ve been fangirling Kate HARD for a few years. And in the past few months, she’s getting all the attention she so, so deserves. She has been an excellent writer since I started following her, but she started releasing her poetry recently and it’s just Next Level. It’s all of our broody emo thoughts about women and motherhood but somehow laced with humor and articulated better than anyone has ever been able to do. It’s approachable, it’s poignant, and it’s SO needed in the world right now. Follow her and swoon with the rest of us.
First off, your website is glorious. It’s really amazing. Beautiful work.
Second, I’ve been on those panic-y ledges lately too. My therapist gives me the same approach too – think about the worst thing that could happen – I can handle it! So anything that falls short of that, I sure can handle too.
I’m so glad you took a second to set up your office. Having a space feels powerful.
Excited for you.
Reming myself lately that I’m allowed to change my mind and pivot and reassess and change my mind again. Working HARD these days on giving myself that grace that I always pretend I give myself but ACTUALLY DOING IT. Because man being a mom and a creative and a wife is hard and I’m winging it every second of everyday.
HAHA i was typing this as Libby was simultaneously pushing buttons on the laptop so that last paragraph somehow got moved down and Libby deleted letter in REMINDING.
GRACE, I tell ya.