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How to run your Online Biz in a Crisis

How to Run Your Online Business In a Crisis

So, the last two weeks have been agony for an introvert like myself. Out of the blue, two weeks ago, I found out I was living in a house that had actually been up for sale on the market all along (who knew? Not me!). By the following week I found out that a buyer had been gotten, and a sale was agreed. I got posted a notice of termination and had t-minus one month until I got shunted out onto the side of the road, baby cats, laptop and all. Oh, and also, there’s a housing crisis going on in Ireland at the moment, though I had not been fully aware of it, until I went to look for a place to rent, found 18 places to rent listed in the entire town, and 2 places which were any way suitable.

This is my very idea of a nightmare. When it comes to anything outside of my business or desserts, I don’t like change. In fact, changing my socks once a day is a challenge. (I still do it it, obviously, but I refuse to wear a matching pair. It’s my little statement of rebellion).

So, anyway, I hadn’t planned on moving for quite some time. And I had planned that the next time I’d move, it’d be to some over sized chateau in France. Not down the street, in the tiny town I’d love to someday escape. Also, there’s the slightly annoying news that I’ll have to rearrange all my newly set up business utilities, as I work from home. My business is officially set up a month now, and currently I’m facing re-jigging all my contacts and addresses. Super bummer.

So, when I learned of the challenging time ahead of myself, what did I do? Well, with a level head, I sat myself down, I took a good overall look at the situation, and then promptly had a mini breakdown.

I cried, stamped my feet and generally threw cutting looks at anyone who suggested that ‘The new place will be even better! It’ll be a big adventure!’ (sorry, lovely boyfriend. I know you were just trying to help but I found your optimism most annoying that particular day).

Cherry couple moving house

Boyfriend’s enchanting house – moving fantasy, involving us.

Anyway, while I joke about me having a mini breakdown (it wasn’t actually that bad, I’d term it more as a meltdown to be precise) I will say that my mental health did indeed go right ahead and perform a magnificent swan dive.

I became anxious, began to get pains in my chest from stress and generally worried that I wouldn’t be able to meet my business goals for this month due to A) Moving and all the stress that goes with it (especially the stress of finding a new place to live in such a tiny town) B) having to have the house spotless every second day because the new owners wanted to visit a few times and measure things up and generally be really nice and wish me well, and love my cats (and my cats loved them) and that aggravated me to no end.

I prefer strangers to you today because you gave me dry food this morning.

“I prefer strangers to you today because you gave me dry food this morning.”

And you know what? I HAVEN’T met ALL of my business goals this month. And, I probably won’t. But that’s okay. I’ve finally gotten myself to a place where I feel better about the whole situation, and I’m going to share with you how I did it, so you can have some ideas about the same kind of support you can give yourself, when things go tits up, the shit hits the fan and other colloquialisms that mean bad things happened. So without further ado:

1) I saw my therapist as usual.

Yup, that’s right, I ran straight to a professional, waving a wad of cash.

Futurama-shut-up-and-take-my-money-card-34

And now that we’ve gotten that out of the way…..

2) I was honest with myself and others. I cried a LOT. Yes, that’s right, I did, because I was sad! So I cried. I let people know I was sad. When people asked ‘How are you?’ I put aside the usual ‘I’m good, thanks! (or ‘I’m grand’ as we say in Co. Kerry, Ireland) and told people ‘I’m not doing so well, I’m having to leave a home where I’m really happy’. I just didn’t bother bottling it up. The people who loved me were supportive and did their best to not strangle me out of sheer frustration. The rest, I didn’t really care about. This may make me sound like an extreme misery guts, but I realized very quickly into this whole situation that I was going through a process of loss and grieving, so I allowed myself this indulgence for once (for a short amount of time).

3) I did EFT. If you don’t know what EFT is, a really quick description of it is that you tap certain points on your body while saying a mantra or affirmation. Here’s a favourite EFT vid of mine that I use for situations just like this one: 

4) I continued to eat a healthy Paleo diet, even though I wanted to inhale the entire bakery section at Tescos. Suffering from anxiety and depression means I have to eat right if I want to feel good. When times get tough, I generally turn into an emotional eater. But this time round I made a special effort to nourish my body and make sure it got what it needed during a trying time.

5)I drank ALL the water. (See above).

6) I allowed loved ones to help me. I was at my wits end over making the house sparkling and spotless for the interested buyers. The place needed a bit of a Spring do-over alright, so when my family and friends offered to help me clean it, my first spit second reaction was to say ‘No thanks! I’ll look after my own shit.’ But something inside of me just decided, ‘Feck it, right now, you need all the help you can get, sugar tits’.

7) I went ahead and planned my Upcoming Month in Business ANYWAY, even though I knew I probably wouldn’t be able to make it all happen. I used my Leonie Dawson Biz Work Book and Calendar and I felt like I still had control over my life and biz. If you don’t know what a Leonie Dawson Biz Work Book is, then just click here to find out more about it. And yes that IS an affiliate link, because I may be in crisis, but tuts, I can still business like a mofo.

8) I planned what I could in relation to the house move and did everything in small manageable chunks, to reduce my overall feeling of being overwhelmed.

9) I created and scheduled as much of my posts, newsletters, emails (and anything else that can be scheduled digitally) straight away, just in case my meltdown became a full blown volcanic eruption on scale with Vesuvius. I actually have a little folder on my computer where I pop blog posts into when I dream them up. Same goes for inspirational / motivational quotes and interesting posts. If you don’t already do this, I’d recommend you do. It’s the perfect resource to dip into when you’re not feeling up to a blog challenge. I also got back to Facebook comments and emails only when I could, and didn’t beat myself up over it.

10) I set up a ‘no tolerance’ on pesky clients. If someone was acting like a massive asshat, I put sincere and authentic communication on the back burner, and I told them to be on their way. If I felt I just couldn’t handle doing a job, I either rescheduled it until after the BIG MOOOVE or I just recommend another person to the client for the job.

11) I did ALL THE MEDITATIONS, at night time, in bed. I scour Youtube to find me some awesome ones. Here’s my current favourite: (Ten Minute Guided Meditation for Unconditional Love and Kindness)

 

 

12) I tried my best to create an attitude of gratitude for myself, by making a note of 10 things every day which I’m truly grateful for. I’ll admit, at times it was a bit of a challenge as I was SO caught up in feeling negative about being forced to move, but I eventually got there.

13) I went outside and walked around, and also visited my friends, even though I most certainly didn’t feel like it.

14) I made a list of things I was actually excited about when it came to the new move. For example, there’s a beautiful desk inbuilt into the wall in the new house. Nice one! It’s the perfect works space for me! I made a decision to focus on the awesome things.

15) I congratulated myself for getting though something that I see as a nightmare, and forgave myself for acting what I saw as over dramatic, and reminded myself that this is exactly how I’d treat my best friend, so it’s also the perfect way to treat myself.

So that’s it – I’ve got another two weeks of moving ahead of me, so technically the whole experience isn’t over yet, however I’m currently feeling much better about the whole thing. I’m looking foward to decorating that desk in the corner and making it my new workspace. I’m kind of proud of myself for making things manageable for me, and carefully planning how I’ve gotten back on my feet after hearing news that to me, is akin to a crisis. And now, I have a plan of action for the next time an unexpected bump in the road comes along and throws me off balance in life and biz.

Also, just to note, no boyfriends’ feelings were hurt during the making of this article.

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Do you feel like an impostor in your Biz?

Yep, I used to suffer from HUGE bouts of impostor syndrome.

Don’t know what that is?

Impostor Syndrome is pretty much exactly what it sounds like. When a person is experiencing  impostor syndrome, they feel like a complete and utter pretender. A fake. Their self worth plummets. They feel like they’re not good enough, they shouldn’t be here among other contemporaries who they feel are ‘real’ examples of what they should be. 

It’s very common for those who are new in business to suffer from impostor syndrome. And why wouldn’t it be? I mean, you’ve been planning and growing and learning for so long. And now’s your time to step up, to shine. That’s when you realize that even if you have all the knowledge under the sun, you’re suddenly out of your comfort zone. You’re suddenly thrown into the ring alongside more experienced people who seem to know exactly what they’re doing. Doubt sets in.

If you’d like to get a better understanding of how Impostor Syndrome can affect someone,  here’s an AMAZING video which is also one of my favourite Ted Talks ever. It’s by the amazing Amy Cuddy, and though it’s about how your body language shapes who you are, there’s a moving segment in it where Amy explains her experience of Impostor Syndrome.

You’ve probably seen me pasting it all over my Facebook wall, but here it is again anyway.

So Why don’t I suffer from Impostor Syndrome anymore?

Well, it would be more accurate to say, ‘Why don’t I suffer from Impostor Syndrome as much any more?’. It still rears it’s ugly little head from time to time, but I’ve been finding it easier to smush it (badass, cat loving style) before it does any debilitating damage.

How? Besides EFT, walking and generally looking after myself, I’ve kept something important, which I’ve recently learned, in mind constantly. Everyone is in the same business boat. Running a business does NOT mean that someone knows it all, or that they are an expert on every part of that business forever and always.

See, the world is always in flux. Things are always changing. It can sometimes be hard to keep up. And that’s what everyone is trying to do; keep up. Whether they just birthed their biz or they’re an old hand at what they do, the one thing that’s constant is the pressure to keep their biz fresh and new. Like mine. Everyone else is constantly learning about their business. Like me.

How I’ve developed my business so far is like this: I’ve worked with what I know, and if people ask me if I can do something for them, if I WANT to do it for them, and I have a good foundation of understanding around it, I’ll say yes, then learn the rest as I go.

In short, if I’ve never done it before, but reckon I can handle it, I just say yes and learn the rest. 

EVERYONE’S JUST MAKING IT UP AS THEY GO ALONG. – and that’s okay.

Now, that sounds kind of sleazy, right? Like… I don’t really have that much experience in the field you’ve inquired about, and here I am, giving you my services anyway?

Well that’s EXACTLY how I had felt for a long while, until I saw a quote from Richard Branson, which confirmed to me that that is how he rolls.

Image from Emilysquotes.com

Image from Emilysquotes.com

And to be quite honest, that’s how a lot of business peeps roll. They have the ability to think on their feet, to learn fast, and to produce awesome work, as they learn, under extreme pressure. Because everyone has to start somewhere. Everyone’s just making it up as they go along. The world is in constant flux and our businesses are too.

And that’s okay.

Learning as you go doesn’t make you an impostor, it makes you open to learning new things. It makes you a constant member of Life’s Academy.

If you find yourself suffering from impostor syndrome, don’t forget to find some support for yourself around it.

I’ve found that joining a Facebook or Mastermind group and chatting with both people in my own level of business and with those who have surpassed my level, is a super positive and helpful experience for me. It’s helped me pack away those horrible doubts about myself and my biz. If for some reason, I’m feeling  vulnerable around the same issue at any stage, I pop back into my groups and have a natter with people who have been, or are going through the same doubts.

I do this because I want to see my business grow and flourish and more importantly, I want to see myself grow and flourish too, while I’m here partaking in this wonderful Academy called Life.

Grace xXx

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