If you were to tell me at 17 that I would be a blogging coach helping women share their stories, I would have laughed at you. I would have thought that being from a small town in Wisconsin, I'd have 0 interesting stories to tell myself.
December is always a month of reflection for me. Looking back at how the year went. It is a reminder for me that despite the moments of feeling like nothing happened or things didn’t go as planned, I achieved more than I remember.
2020 was a year of change for me. From blog coaching falling into my lap to doing a complete rebranding of my business, growth was monumental. My word for the year was BECOMING and it truly represents what my life and business went through this year.
Let’s face it…
2020 was a year of emotional turmoil and our lives being turned upside down but that isn’t the focus of this blog post. The focus is on the transformation that I made as a blogger and as an entrepreneur.
I was questioning what I was doing when I had a call a couple of weeks ago with a business coach. I remember at the end of the call her telling me that I should be proud of how far I had come in less than a year. I had no to little help in building my business.
I had helped 3 women through my group coaching program.
I had helped 1 woman through my blogging intensive weekends.
I had helped 1 woman through my 1 on 1 coaching service.
In less than 12 months, I have helped 5 women start their blogs to share their stories.
I took that for granted and didn’t think the impact that I made mattered UNTIL that coach pointed it out to me. Sometimes we just need someone to show us the good that we are doing.
I WAS JUST A STRUGGLING FREELANCE BLOGGER
Heading into 2020, I was struggling to find freelance clients. That is all I was doing until my friend suggested that I host my first ever blogging workshop.
I wanted to stick with the business theme and show the business owners that I knew what I was talking about when it came to blogging so I hosted my Blogging for Business workshop. It was held at my local library in January. I thought that I had failed because no one had signed up until FINALLY a complete stranger signed up and my friend who suggested that I host the workshop, signed up as well.
2 women had believed in me enough to show up and I WOWED them. I felt on top of the world during that whole presentation that I put together. I imagine I felt like anyone who is doing a TedX talk would feel. Trying to describe being in alignment with your passion is hard to put into words. After that night, my vision changed and I began to create a different version that my business was growing into.
SLOW GROWTH MEANS ADAPTING AS YOU GO
In February, I held my first weekend blogging intensive. 16 hours over 2 days lead to a website being created and a blog being born. Watching someone’s dream come to life is magical. Catching that moment of Jody hitting publish on her very own website was a combination of intense relief and joy combined. She now had a safe place to share her story and her words while creating an impact that she had only dreamt about.
In March, I created Blogology. Originally a 6 week course to start your own blog. It has now become a course that is 7 weeks in length. I took everything that we did in the 16 hours of the blogging intensive and turned it into a longer group program that women can take. Guided coaching in a group setting that allows them to begin their own blog and create their own website.
There were moments of doubt. They normally popped in when I wasn’t teaching Blogology. It gave me time to question myself and the progress I made. Not reminding myself that a few short months before that, I was struggling to even know what I wanted to do. Ready to throw it all in.
When you are in the midst of coaching anyone, there is no time to question yourself. You feel like you are exactly where you need to be. You know that what you are doing makes a difference. It is those in between moments that all those thoughts find their way in. Making you think that you are less than you really are.
When COVID hit, I had to take some time off of my business, just as it was finally hitting a stride of success. My kids were suddenly home from school and finding time to get work done seemed impossible.
I continued to show up on my social media platforms and on my blog but I wasn’t pushing my services as we tried to figure out what our life would look like. I considered myself lucky because I was already home so I didn’t have to walk away from a job but I had to give less of myself to my business which was devastating.
WHEN REBRANDING WAS MY ONLY OPTION
In June, I hit a point where I was ready to get back into my business but felt like something was missing. I HATED my website and my colours. I knew that I needed to create something that I would fall in love with but that conveyed my message more than what I currently had.
I was lucky and I found a Wix template on Etsy that I absolutely loved and went for it. The colours fit my ideal client and what I had always envisioned my brand to represent.
My husband took the two oldest kids up north one weekend and I redid my entire website that weekend. For hours on end, I transferred blog posts and I did some of the hardest work I have done. I decided not to transfer all of my blog posts because I wanted to focus more on blogging than my previous website had done. I cut almost half of my blog posts off of my new website in June and started fresh.
I felt like I had a brand new focus and really started to showcase my blogging experience. I added 1 on 1 coaching to my list of services and in August, I had my first non-referral or non-friend purchase my services.
I felt like a real coach. I felt like I could now be taken seriously because I had sold my service on my own. Referrals are fantastic and I am grateful to my friends who ALWAYS recommend me to anyone they know. But having someone reach out because they were watching me on my social media platform felt like REAL SUCCESS. It felt like all the effort and passion that I had been putting out for months and months was beginning to pay off.
Oh and let me tell you, that one on one client, Iris, was a dream client. She basically finished with me this week and I can’t tell you the AMAZING progress she made. Well actually I can and I will tell you.
SEPTEMBER 1 NUMBERS DECEMBER 1 NUMBERS
Website views: 333 Website views: 1451
Email subscribers: 6 Email subscribers: 41
FB followers: 299 FB followers: 460
IG followers: 825 IG followers: 2200
Twitter followers: 54 Twitter followers: 139
Pinterest followers: 8 Pinterest followers: 91
I am so proud of her.
Seeing these numbers reminds me that I do know what I am doing. That the doubt that seems to whisper in my ear, doesn’t know what it is talking about. That my clients see success through what I am teaching them.
THE YEAR 2020 IN REVIEW
There were so many high peaks and so many very low peaks in this year. Working through moments of doubt, moments of fear, moments of speculation. I also had moments of pure joy, moments of connection, moments of feeling on top of the world. All of these combined showed me that as I continue to step into my power as a blogging coach and as a woman, I am BECOMING who I am supposed to be. It may not come to me in ways that I want it to or as fast as I want it to but I am learning that in this journey, you have to learn when to relinquish control.
That is what 2020 has taught me. To accept where I am and to continue building the life that I envision. It has also taught me that what I want for myself isn’t wrong. Being true to myself is terrifying and amazing all at the same time.
These past 12 months have proven to me that I can do hard things and that I can be successful in the ways that I want to see success. It has proven to me that I do know what I am doing and that I deserve to keep living out my passion on a daily basis.
What has the past 12 months taught you?