If You’ve Ever Cried Your Eyes Out Over Your Business...
I get it. I mean I really, REALLY get it.
Because that was me on Monday night.
Frustrated, confused, overwhelmed, stuck, tired. Feeling like a fraud, imperfect, afraid, like I'm letting everyone down. Fed up with answering “I don’t know!” to every question.
I felt all of it, and I imagine you have too.
“The cobbler whose children have no shoes." You know – when you’re so great at working your magic for clients but neglect making the same transformation for yourself? Yeah, that. It sucks.
That was Monday night.
And then Tuesday rolled around, in spite of the raging headache that I always get the day after a good cry. (If anyone has a scientific explanation for this, I’d be ever grateful.) Somehow there was a shift, partly due to the support of my amazing, non-judge-y husband and partly due to finally getting honest about things. Out loud. I was also looking forward to a call that evening with a handful of awesome women entrepreneurs who would help me make sense of this.
See, here’s what was completely sidelining me – my BRANDING. (Go ahead. It’s ok to laugh.) I absolutely love what I do and who I do it for, but both have slowly pivoted over the past two years, and my branding is no longer inline with either. Right down to my business name. Yup, the whole ball of wax. I kept making little adjustments thinking I could salvage it somehow, but I know that I need to tear it all down. And that's stinkin’ scary!
How can I keep networking when my brand is up in the air? What if I don’t look professional and put together? What will people think? What will YOU think?
But here’s the thing. One of my core values is TRANSPARENCY. It’s one of the biggest reasons why I find this online world so tricky because it inherently lacks transparency. Yes, there are wonderful people and businesses there, but it takes time and discernment to know who’s the real deal. And by nature, I’m a bit of a skeptic.
So on Tuesday night, knowing both my desire for transparency and who I really am, my friend saw my nightmare from a completely different perspective and asked me the best questions:
What if my “audience" could observe the real-life transformation when someone (um, that’d be me) goes from confused, insecure, and aimless to strategic, clear, and confident?
What if, instead of fighting it, I jump in with both feet and really identify with my clients’ frustrations?
Because here’s what I know.
It’s all fixable. That’s what I do, and I LOVE what I do. A Bachelor's degree and 25+ years of experience doesn’t leave me lost for how to go about this. And if I can do it for others, I can certainly do it for myself too.
LESSONS FROM THIS WEEK
When things get rough, phone a friend. I’m blessed with business BFFs who are the best hug-lovin’, hiney-kickin’ gals I’ve ever known. And, yes, both things can be done through a computer screen.
Yes, you CAN buy me love. These same women came into my life through paid, online courses. This alone is worth the price of admission. Investing in “stuff” together brings support, perspective, and accountability long after the course is over.
Non-business support is vital too. I’m so grateful for a spouse and friends who know me and love me for me, or sometimes in spite of me. There’s more to life than work. Plus he buys me chocolate!
Telling myself “I should have done this sooner” is an utter waste of time. Frankly, it would have been impossible to make most changes any sooner. We probably aren’t ready or, at the very least, didn’t know what we didn’t know. Now I know. Now I can do something about it.
To piggyback on #4, trust that everything happens at the right time. Take each day as it comes, and live in the present. Regret lives in the past and worry lives in the future. And neither are very useful.
Difficulty breeds empathy, if we let it. And empathy makes us all-around better people.
This is what “word vomit” looks like when you’re trying to find clarity. Cathartic, but utterly exhausting for me. (Ever since high school, I prefer writing on my bed rather than at a computer.)
So here’s the deal.
I’m not going away. The studio name must change, the logo and visual branding will change, but the essence of the business stays the same. What that looks like a month from now, I have yet to discover.
There’s no slick Launch Plan. I don’t want one. I thought about Googling “how to launch your rebrand,” but why waste my time planning when I can just do the work? The only purpose I can see in a formal Plan is to make me look like I have it all together. And I’ve clearly already blown the lid off that!
This isn't some gimmick to get you to buy or book, though of course the studio is still open if you’d like to. This is simply a transparent invitation to watch it all unfold as we both learn along the way. Best case scenario: it'll help me really put myself in my clients’ shoes and give you a glimpse of what’s possible with a little guidance, honest questions, and expertise. Worst case scenario: it’ll all go up in a glorious ball of fire. Either way, it should be a good show!
That said, if you’ve been considering branding or rebranding your business, now’s the time. My services and prices will stay “as is” until the end of April. On May 1, they'll change. Keep watching this space to see exactly what that looks like, or join my email list if you want to know sooner. I do know that the Custom Social Media Templates will no longer be offered as a stand-alone service. So if you’ve been dragging your feet, hop to it!
This won’t be perfect. As much as possible, the website will stay up as it all unfolds. We’ve all seen the “under construction” landing pages, but where’s the fun in that? There’ll be a url change. There’ll probably be broken links. It’s all part of the journey.
So come stroll with me down Transparency Lane ‘cause this cobbler’s gonna make one strategic, stylish pair of shoes!