I am spending some time - read, lots of time, reflecting on 2018 and what I have taken away from the year.
Here are three things (Chosen from my reflecting) that 2018 well and truly taught me……..
Self Care Matters ........ A Lot!!
I often talk about how you 'Can't pour from a broken cup' and how it is important to 'Look after yourself in the same way that you look after others'. But honestly - I am good at telling others to do this, but not so good at it myself.
I've spoken about how my health decided to kick my ass last year so I won't repeat the story. But what it meant was that I had to get serious about self care.
I had to basically fall in love with self care! (The pic is me having some Self Care Time in Australia)
There are actually five different elements to self care: Physical, Social, Spiritual, Emotional and Intellectual.
(Last year I did a challenge with my clients around each of these elements - I'm thinking that needs to happen again this year, so look out for this.)
Some of these were easy for me, but some were pretty hard, especially the Social Element.
Social Self-Care is focussed on: Having a supportive network of people you can turn to when you need upliftment, nurturing, guidance or someone to listen without judgement.
Now I am by nature a Rescuer and often land up with people in my broader social circle who are 'needy'. It's like I have a flashing light that says: Come for some free guidance and nurturing!!
I also hate conflict so you can imagine that I am not big on telling people that actually you are not nurturing me, you are draining me.
So I sat down and did a Social Circle audit and people had to be culled!! And what I discovered was that my inner circle of friends are the most supportive, nurturing people you could hope to find. They celebrate every small success with me and are there to listen without judgement when I am in a panic.
So my circle got a lot smaller but it's now Quality over Quantity.
Shine Bright aka Get Over Yourself!!
So as entrepreneurs one of the things that we do a LOT of is the dangerous act of Comparison. Actually, women in general do this a LOT!
And oh boy did I fall into that trap a good couple of times ......
As I was developing my new offerings I was discovering a whole lot of people doing similar things to what I was doing! At one point I even commented: 'Does this woman live in my head?" I spent hours looking at what they were doing and thinking: 'Oh shit, maybe I should change this or this ..." or even worse: "Who am I to think that I can do this when she's been doing it for so much longer?"
But then I got to a point where I got clear that I am me and they are them! And my way of doing things is not their way of doing things and there is space in the world for all of us.
I am now a recovering Comparison Addict. And part of my therapy is that I have unfollowed, unsubscribed and unliked the people who were stressing me out.
I feel more in control. I am going to do this in my own unique way!
The second part of Shine Bright was really to get out from under my rock and start networking.
And what I learnt was that like me, most other female entrepreneurs HATE traditional networking. It feels sleazy and second hand 'salesmany'.
So I decided ok, if I don't like that type of networking, let me just create my own type of networking. Because why not!!
I have run two 'official' networking events and guess what - the women who have attended have loved it. But more importantly - they have connected and collaborated and lots of business has happened. So maybe, just maybe, there is a space for the type of networking that I offer.
Where there is one, there is more ......
A coach I really respect has this as her mantra. And her whole business is created around this being: "If there is one client who loves what I am doing, there must be more."
It has become my go to mantra as I build my business.
And what I have discovered by using this as my mantra is that I feel less pressure, because I am not focussing on trying to attract a multitude of clients - I am delivering to my Ideal Client who I know loves what I do and how I do it.
And in turn, I attract more Ideal Clients and my business grows.
Maybe not as quickly as what they 'promise' in those FB ads where it says: "Do this one thing and you will have a six figure income".
But at a pace that works for me!!
So, what did 2018 teach you?