Visions of a Vision Board
It’s Monday morning.
I started drafting this entry yesterday, but I only got as far as, “It’s Sunday morning.” 😬 So rewind, erase, start over.
Some cool things to note:
I have now passed the two-year mark of working online! What? Amazing. I keep thinking I’ve just started (and in the bigger scheme of things, I truly just have) but two years is still two years, and that’s pretty cool. In July, that will have been two years of working online full-time, and wow that’s a lot of time spent on my bed because somehow I can’t work at a desk.
It’s also been a year since I tried blogging every day to try and figure out how and where to pivot my business. Spoiler alert from one year later: what I landed on after the 8 days of blogging is …. not what I’m doing anymore. 😅
And I think what I’m doing now may not completely be what I’ll be doing a year from now! More on that later.
I blogged again! And!
Made my first real-life mini-course!
I blog at the average speed of one entry per year, and create courses at the average speed of 0 every three years, so this is exciting news to me.
You’ll find the blog entry here, which walks through the system I’ve created so that clients can easily inquire about my services from my sales page … without me having to respond to a ton of DMs or emails (that we all know I never get to).
Below the blog entry, you’ll have the option to purchase the tech walkthrough so you can set it up yourself. I used free tools because it’s what I used when I was starting (aka had no money), and I still use it now because hey — it works!
I’m still struggling with positioning the course, which is why I don’t have a full sales page for it yet. I think I’m curse-of-knowledge-ing it. I know it’s useful but How 2 Say?
If you have any feedback, hmu please.
Vision Board 2019
One of my clients, who is the sweetest of sweethearts, gave me a goal planner for Christmas.
“Time to get your dreams and goals to come true, too. Hopefully you can start to manifest more of what you want. But don’t leave me too soon. haha!”
Right? The sweetest of sweethearts.
One of its first pages is a vision board, and you’re supposed to fill that up, no holds barred. After that, you choose your goals for the next 90 days and systematically (because the planner comes with a system!) muscle your way through.
Because I have a fear of touching pretty notebooks, I thought I’d vision board in blog form.
Working 9:00-2:30, what a way to make a living ♫
A former officemate showed me the Austrian embassy’s work hours: 9:00am to 2:30pm, Tuesday to Friday.
Let me tell you, I grabbed the nearest piece of paper I could find and wrote
Tuesday to Friday
real huge. I never gave a serious look to the concept of manifesting, but boy did I want to manifest this. Do you hear that universe? I am speaking it into existence!
“But what if you just build a life you don’t need a break from —”
I love my work. But I also want the space to tinker, experiment, and play. To run errands! To spend some time alone reading or bingeing Netflix. More Mommy-Kito time, but this time, with a non-stressed mommy. Going out to watch a movie in the middle of the day. Staying home with the family. Or staying up with the family. Taking a sick day without having to text, like, 50 people, and then, as soon as I’m well, scramble to make up for all the work I’ve missed.
Sidebar: K had to write “three related sentences” for school. He wrote:
“My mommy is working. She is tired. She is stressed.”
Are these work hours realistic for the amount of income I need? Not … at the moment. I tried plotting, it, and while it isn’t feasible yet, it’s something I can at least work toward, which I know I can do. It might mean being stricter with how I block my time, transitioning my business model (again! What’s this, a hobby?), building a team, or all of the above.
But it’s doable.
Book out clients 3-6 months in advance
My business model used to be purely retainer bases. If I booked x number of clients, period, well, yay. I’m booked indefinitely and don’t have to sell myself again.
And though I love that model, I’ve come to realize that retainer = ongoing = nonstop. I wanted to craft project-based client offers, too, so that I have the choice to not offer them on certain months (e.g. Christmas!) if I need or want a break.
My main service at the moment is Techin’ Care of Business, where I build out and automate your course’s coming soon, opt-in, and sales pages + back-end funnel-y tech. (Ah yes, she truly is a copywriter.)
I haven’t promoted it much aside from from my one (1) announcement post and … uh, this entry. So I will have to if I want clients lined up for the next three to six months!
To do that, I have to know how many clients I can take per month (to know how many I need to be booked out). To do that, I have to know how long each client takes. To do that, I have to map out my whole process. And one rabbit hole later . . .
My brain is still recovering from creating this ^ before it can estimate how long a phase takes, but wow what a huge mental load off to not have to think from scratch with every new client! Lol so is this why people have systems and processes? jk.
Tech comes easy to me and when I do the stuff I just … do it, almost as if on instinct, if that makes sense. But breaking it down like this is like: Okay. Yeah. No. It’s definitely worth what I’m charging for it! That’s design, tech, and, in some cases, copy — for alllladat!
So if you want the tech to do all the heavy lifting for your course so you can tech care of business —
Book me! Tell your friends to book me! Or tell me how I can tell other people to book me because I don’t know how to sell myself!
Transition into a product-based business
I also want to be able to squeeze more out of my time so I can cut down on work hours and take only the clients I want to take.
Once upon a time, I tried taking in All The Clients, All At Once. I was so overwhelmed. Not just with the work, but with six people talking to me at the same time, splitting my brain six ways, and the pressure of juggling and coordinating and trying to meet six sets of deadlines that I burnt out and lost my ability to see properly.
Maybe I was just new. I also didn’t know how to set proper boundaries. But it’s not something I want to do again. Being on call and so immediately accountable to so many was major anxiety all day every day. I loved my clients (that’s why I said yes to them!) but it was I who couldn’t manage something like that. So unless I price my services at $10,000 or start an agency** or something, I’m not going to be able to scale my income on services alone.
Nor do I want to! I’m not great at sales, so it’s great that I only need a few clients a month. But because one client brings in a good amount of income, losing a client is also a big blow. One of my longtime retainer clients and I parted ways the very month I was hospitalized, and another retainer client put me on pause the month my car needed major repairs.
But like a true colonialized Filipino also raised on the ideals of delicadeza, I didn't complain. Chz.
I have buffer money for emergencies, of course, and I'm so so grateful that I did in those Very Mercury Retrograde months. (Every time I had to pay a huge bill, I'd flip the script on myself and say, hey, I get to pay this huge bill.)
But my buffer is now a buffer. Y'feel me.
So I don’t want to be put in a position again where my income can fluctuate so much based on a way-beyond-control decision of a single person. As Veronica Lodge said in one of the last few episodes of Riverdale I had the strength to watch, and I paraphrase because I don’t know which episode it’s in, “Steady income is just one bad month away from broke.”
Oof. I felt that.
Wait. Where was I.
I will always advocate starting with offering services because even if it’s trading time for money, it’s trading time for money. But it’s very one-is-to-one. So I want to begin exploring how to now leverage my time and get more from it, so I can scale both outcome and income.
It’s a little nerve-wracking. Coming up with courses (ahem), workshops, group programs, perchance even a membership will mean … people. Lots of people. And I know many people start businesses to impact as many lives as they can BUT WAIT I’M SHY.
Something clicked yesterday. And a eureka moment, five pages of feverishly scrawled notes, and two URLs (lol) later —
I haven’t been so excited for an idea in so long! It’s not a course. It’s not a mastermind or group coaching program. It’s … well, let’s just say it’s great to be able to pull back from the online business world and find inspiration from elsewhere. Let’s see what it ends up becoming! I’m really happy how so many pieces of this thing I’d been puzzling over for so long fell into place to create a concept that’s different, fun!, so smart and helpful —
YOU KNOW I MEAN IT BECAUSE WHEN DOES MY LOW SELF-ESTEEM HAVING SELF HYPE MYSELF UP EVER
— that I want so bad to be able to pull it off!
Which is the perfect segue to share that I’m joining the Build Without Burnout Academy! It’s a six (!) month program walking us through the process of transitioning from a client-based business to a product-based business, so while it’s exactly what I want to do, NYOVA isn’t launching soon soon. I want to pace myself and do this properly (without burnout nga!) so that it’ll really, truly happen. I’ve flaked on myself before. Not this time!
So my theme for 2019 is
Lol, I don’t know. I don’t have enough brain cells left to come up with a theme or a rallying cry to tie all these concepts together.
I just know that I’m looking forward to whatever’s coming, and I’m so excited to play.
*A client I was creating a website for texted me his office hours so I could add them to the footer. All I had to do was type it as is. He had to correct me five times before I got it.
** Ooh. Actually.