2018 was an eventful year for me, both personally and professionally. As I write this post, our internet is down due to last night’s storm, providing a welcome distraction-free moment to think about my goals for 2019, and how the year we’ve just farewelled has shaped them. Here they are:
Goal 1: Prioritise health and happiness
From a health perspective, my husband and I have had a rough year. In August, I ended up in a pretty serious emergency situation which has had major physical and emotional consequences. My husband also dealt with some major health issues of his own, necessitating extended time off work. The hurdles that life threw at us in 2018 were certainly a pain in the arse, but the rallying of family and friends and resulting personal growth have been two comforting rays of light to have come out of the grey. I’m now clearer than ever on what’s important to me, and I reckon I’m more resilient than ever before.
So how does this impact my goals for 2019? I’m fully prioritising health and happiness above all else. I’m determined to become a better wife, daughter, sister and friend. I’m seeking help to let go of any bitterness or helplessness that I feel. And I’m going to stop trying to fix things for others, and let them come to their own solutions in their own time. And as difficult as this may be, I’m going to TRY to stop bombarding my husband with my kooky, half-baked business ideas, because sometimes my wide-eyed enthusiasm and excited chatter about product ideas at 11pm is just a bit too much for some people.
Goal 2: Grow my online gift business
If you’ve been reading this blog, you’ll know I started an online gift business while I was still working in a 9-5 corporate job. Gift Boss has been going for a few months now, and I must admit, I’m mighty pleased with how it’s progressed in such a short amount of time. Although I gave up a good salary and financial benefits to earn absolutely nothing while I get the business up and running, I feel it was worth it. Every time I sit down to work on the business, I enjoy it so much that it doesn’t feel like work, and the positive customer feedback I’ve been receiving motivates me to keep improving and growing.
Sure, there are challenges in running a business in the hugely competitive gift hamper industry (the cost of Google ads alone is mind blowing and I’m really not as on top of the numbers and bookkeeping as I should be because I am not a numbers person and never will be), but I learn something new every day. And being able to use the skills I’ve developed in the 20 years I’ve been working for others, but in my own business, is enormously rewarding.
So, this year, I aim to complete a small business course to get on top of the nitty gritty of running a business, up my marketing and photography game, and consider fresh avenues for Gift Boss, such as pushing more into the corporate gift space, and manufacturing products as a side venture.
Goal 3: Get clear and intentional with my freelance work
Make it clear has been chugging along nicely for 12 months. Interestingly, it has grown organically through referrals, rather than Google, which makes me wonder about my online presence and whether it’s up to scratch. Is my website the best representation of me? Is it getting found easily by my ideal clients? Who even are my ideal clients? These are the questions that I ask MY copywriting clients when I’m getting to know them and their business. It’s time I ask them of myself.
Therefore, in 2019, I want to get clear on what sort of copywriter I want to be, and where I want to take my business. I also started blogging on my website recently, and it’s been challenging to decide what I should write about. How personal do I get? What do people want to read about? Does the world need more copywriting and marketing tips? Is anyone reading my posts, and if not, what’s the point of writing them? Excuse me while I have a minor existential crisis!
Goal 4: Meet more kindred spirits
While I was in a bit of a funk last year, I sought out others who were experiencing similar struggles in an effort to feel a little less alone. The Meetup app was an absolute godsend. I joined a couple of groups which resonated with me, and have been to several face-to-face meetups. The understanding, support and encouragement that have come out of them has been incredible. I’ve since continued friendships outside of the organised meetups and I want to make the effort to nurture these connections more.
I’ve also met some incredible female entrepreneurs through Gift Boss, and through business-oriented Facebook groups. I’ve connected with some in person (yes, IRL!) to share the good, the bad and the ugly of starting a business. It’s been both reassuring and inspiring to talk with others on a similar path – turns out we all have the same insecurities and face the same challenges, but we all agree the rewards are worth it. Connecting with like-minded, inspiring entrepreneurial women has been good for my soul and that’s why it’s on the cards for 2019.
Goal 5: Continue to take risks
It really sucks having a husband who works in risk and compliance sometimes. Because every time I say “I’ve got a good idea”, it’s met with about five reasons why it’s not a good idea. Despite this, I know deep down that taking risks professionally is the right thing to do. For me, it was a risk to resign from my job while we have a mortgage. It was a risk to start a business with no experience. But I’m awfully glad I took those risks.
Because what I learnt from 2018 is that if you feel like you’re on a hamster wheel, showing up each day but not really being present, then it’s time to jump off. And if you end up doing something that makes you excited to get out of bed each day, then the risk was worth it in the end, wasn’t it?
There you have it. Five chunky, but completely achievable, goals for 2019. I’d love to hear what yours are too, so please share them in the comments or drop me an email.
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