How to avoid the overwhelm in your creative business + a Helpful Checklist
About 3 months ago I started dipping my toe into the world of online business and passive income, and goodness me, it's a whole other world out there. The idea of online businesses isn't new, people have been producing online courses and selling information products ever since the internet first began in 1969. What has changed dramatically is the people behind the courses. No longer do you have to have a doctorate in computer programming or some other fancy sounding degree, regular people like you and me are making money selling their social media strategies in the form of webinars, workshops and coaching packages.
Sounds wonderful doesn't it? Being able to make money doing what you love. Isn't that so many people are striving to do? Striving to free themselves from their 9-5's to make more money and have more time to do the things they love?
Well it sure isn't as easy as the people on Pinterest make it look, let me assure you.
In my own little journey to create passive income, I have never felt more more overwhelmed. I feel like a fish out of water, and I like to think I have learned a few things about the online world from my 5 years of blogging. There is just SO much information on everything from how to use Pinterest to grow your blog, how to gain a billion new followers on Instagram in 3 days, and the one the both inspires me and makes me feel ill all at the same time, How to earn 6-Figures (we're talking US$ here) a month with these three proven strategies.
If you're like me, an aspiring entrepreneur, just starting out and wanting to figure out where exactly your blog or business fits in, then this blog post is for you. I want to tell you that you're not alone in feeling buried alive with information.
I get it, there seem to be so many people out there flying past in the 'race' to be famous that you start to feel disheartened very quickly. My inbox is filled with invites to time sensitive webinars & workshops that I find myself being so overwhelmed with the information in front of me that i feel as if my brain is going to burst. And then on top of the information overload from OTHER people, my own brain is working in overdrive coming up with new ideas for all sorts of things that I just can't keep up with myself. Does this at all sound familiar?
If it does, then whew! I'm so glad I'm not the only one. I wanted to share with you today some systems (such a fancy word but don't let that put you off) for helping me deal with the overwhelm. If you're a creative entrepreneur, a blogger, a small business owner, or if you're like me; an aspiring infopreneur (such a fun word for people who create and sell information products) then I do hope you find the following genuinely useful in your battle to overcome overwhelm.
1. Purge your email inbox.
As the owner of my very own email community, I know what it feels like when people unsubscribe from your email list.
It's a necessary step to take in order to quieten down the overload. I am now very intentional with what I subscribe to. Instead of 30 unread emails sitting in my inbox, I now have about 5 or 6 from bloggers and business owners I really love and care about, and who help me start off my day on a positive note because their emails provide me with real value. Or they are just so nice that I don't mind what they send me in an email, I always enjoy reading them. I do so hope my email community, The #CGScreative, is one that you enjoy hearing from.
2. Get a BIG pretty notebook to write everything down in.
This was such a simple step and yet, having a durable notebook that I can scribble in and makesnotes with during webinars, Periscopes & e-courses has really helped me to purge my mind of all the ideas and thoughts buzzing around.
Never underestimate the power of pen and paper (and pretty coloured pens, markers & washi tape).
I use my notebook to write everything from blog post ideas in, to launching sequences for products, and to brainstorm all the fun things that I want to do with my blog.
3. Write a SHORT Daily To Do list (when you have a lot of deadlines)
I write long checklists in my business notebook (the one I mentioned in 2 above) but for when I have actual deadlines for projects, I need a check list that sits next to me at my desk. You can use your phone for this, but I often forget about it on my phone and find small notepad has worked best for me.
I don't put more than 3 things on that list for each day. I put the most important task at the top of the list, and then put the other two things in order of importance. Just writing down what I need to get done for the day is where the magic lies for me. Seeing it on paper, rather than having it buzz around my head helps me to get things done.
4. Join Facebook groups that make you feel empowered and special, rather than a lost fart in a perfume factory.
Since I started this journey to passive income, I must have joined just about EVERY Facebook group every created by a blogger or business owner. And you know what I've found? The majority of those groups are ruled by those loud voices (you know the ones I mean), the ones who make you feel small and inadequate with where you are in your business journey.
I am still a member of a lot of those groups (as I use them for market research) but I have turned off the notifications for the groups that make me feel worthless. I am now an active member of a select few groups that encourage and motivate me.
5. Find a Blogging or Business Bestie (or group of Bestie's!).
This was something I have had on my heart for a very long time. I have been searching for someone to brainstorm with, bounce ideas of off, and just have in my corner in the often lonely world of entrepreneurship. I mean, let's be real here, there's only so much sound-boarding my poor husband can do every day. And I have needed to be clearer on separating my business life from my personal life, something that is SO hard to do when you are so excited about something.
So, I connected with one of the lovely business bosses I recently 'met' in a Facebook group (and when I say connected with, I mean sent a crazy email to her outlining what I was looking for and asking her if she by any chance felt the same...I totally opened myself up to rejection and the possibility of her thinking I was a crazy stalker) BUT I am happy to report, we had my first Skype date yesterday and she doesn't think I'm a crazy stalker!
And you know what, I left our nearly 3 hour chat feeling energised and excited and ready to tackle more of the challenges I have been facing since Is started this business journey. I want to encourage you to reach out to someone this week, someone you feel has the same goals and dreams for their business as you do, and see what magical things can come out of collaboration.
Wow, I didn't expect to have so much to say in this blog post.
To sum everything up I have put together a pretty PDF checklist for you to print out as a reminder for those days when you're feeling snowed under. You can access this list as well as loads of other resources in my FREE resource library by joining The #CGScreative. Simply click below:
Drop me a comment below with what you're currently struggling with and I'll try and help you as best I can. Here's to you getting back on track again.
Here are a few more posts on blogging that you might find helpful.