Tag: goals

It’s Time I Had Some Time Alone

It’s Time I Had Some Time Alone

I contemplated not writing this week, because lord – you guys have had me BUSY this week. Glory be! But then, as I sat sending out end of day emails and making my list for shit to do tomorrow, a song came on.

 

Now before I get too much further, I want you to know that I am a HUGE believer in the arts moving you. Sometimes it takes you back, sometimes it takes you forward and forces you to take action – hence why I am here, writing a blog when I should be thinking about what I am going to make for dinner.

 

It’s going to be a pizza night and I don’t care

 

Who remembers Myspace?

 

Okay. First, yes – it is still a thing (I KNOW, RIGHT?!?)

 

Second, I LOVED Myspace. It spoke to my artsy-fartsy soul in ways that “plain old” Facebook just couldn’t.

 

We all know how *that* worked out, but I digress, Myspace. Yes.

 

Three Miles Of Back Road

 

I’m pretty sure my Myspace is still out there, untouched for nearly 15 years with equally outdated artwork and probably with my tag line of “She’s Three Miles Of Back Road” (I didn’t try to log in, so those that are active, please let me know).

 

This is a line from one of my favorite bands growing up, when I formalized my let’s say “eclectic” taste in music. But I made it my tag line because it spoke to me.

 

It was how I felt about myself.

 

Bumpy, With Unexpected Turns

 

Growing up in what I still affectionately call, “The Middle of Nowhere,” I KNEW what three miles of back road FELT like. But I also know what it *could* FEEL like.

 

I knew it could be exhilarating and fun but could equally be dangerous.

 

That can be downright scary when you stop and think about it.

It’s just more FUN in a manual

 

I’ve driven 5-speeds since I was 18 and intend to drive a *true* manual transmission as long as I possibly can. The years between 18-22, I drove my little 5-speeds up and over the mountain, taking me from home to work and back again.

 

Weather at times made this trip fun and I have some great stories about trips over that mountain that are not for the faint of heart. While this was not always the case, I sometimes needed to take some back roads that would lead me to Route 75 and then my final few miles of back road to home.

 

Because of this, I endured quite a bit of ribbing for my choice in vehicles. But I have only gotten stuck once in my life and have had quite a bit of fun doing shit no car *should* do.

 

Oh, the Stories I *Could* Tell

 

The Child does not appreciate it when I tell him some of the stories. He understands the gravity of some of these stories as I have been in many car accidents, of which one I was at fault and his father has been in two since the Child was born. He has seen the very real affects of driving and the inherent dangers of such.

 

I also understand that for him, driving holds a very different position for him. For me, it meant freedom. Freedom to blast my music, put the window down and let the wind take hold of my hair. It took me to a different place, and at times, continues to do so.

 

So, there I am, pounding out end of day emails, listening to Amazon’s Feel-Good Classics when BLAM! A blast from the past knocks me on my ass and send me into a fun little rabbit hole.

It’s the End of the World as We Know It

 

It’s one of my favorites from one of my favorite bands and wouldn’t mind learning the lyrics, because as I have found, they throw some fun stuff in there if you are listening.

 

And that’s when it struck me, somewhere between those three miles of back road and realizing there would be no way I could ever sign that song without A LOT of practice, that what they were singing about gained significantly more meaning over the last two years.

 

We’re all figuring out this new world that we’re living in, certain of one thing: if you are sick, stay HOME.

 

That leaves a lot up in the air. And doing the most basic of human things is now something that takes great consideration, not only for ourselves, but for others.

 

Looking Ahead

 

Something as simple as an itchy nose has brought us to explaining and apologizing. While this may feel odd and awkward at times, it tells me that we’re starting to figure shit out.

 

We’re testing the waters of “people-ing” again and after what we’ve experienced, there’s bound to be some bumps in the road.

 

It’s. Expected.

 

So, for the next few weeks, I want you to take it easy on others because EVERYONE is stressed af and EVERYONE is struggling in some way this season.

 

But more importantly, take it easy on YOURSELF. You’ve been through a lot. You deserve a break. Allow yourself the time to do so in the next week and half. I’m going to need you bright eyed and bushy tailed for 2022. We’re going to do some amazing things together.

 

 

 

Resolutions

Many look to the new year as a time of renewal and change. We make resolutions to be more positive, healthier, to save more, to work on those aspects of ourselves we would like to change, and companies take advantage of this. How many commercials have you heard or watched about getting into shape or cooking healthier meals, losing weight? It’s common knowledge that we look to the new year as a time to resolve to work on ourselves. However, it is also common knowledge that by the end of the January, those gym memberships aren’t being used as frequently and that diet has long since lost its luster. Why do we do this to ourselves?

When we fail to plan, we are planning to fail

Often, it is due to lack of planning. As a friend says, “When we fail to plan, we are planning to fail.” This is key not only to us as individuals, but especially as a business, for us to be able to see success in the long run. Running a successful business is an endurance run, and there will be times when things run smoothly and times when tough decisions need to be made. There will be incredibly frustrating times and incredibly exciting times. But if you don’t have a plan for your business, these times may seem scary and unpredictable. The times when things are running smoothly, you may be waiting for the other shoe to drop and unable to enjoy the ride for what it is. Frequently, unfortunately when we are in this state, we will pull back from activities. While there may be many reasons we rely on when others inquire, it should be noted that when changes are made to downsize your efforts, it sends red flags to others that your business may be faltering.

The great thing about planning is it can be done at any time because we do it all the time. From the household budget to trips we want to take; we are always planning something so why not plan for your business and how you want it to operate?

While it is widely accepted that new year’s resolutions are short term and high turnover, allowing this mindset to follow into your business can be fatal. Owning a business is not for the faint of heart, and to be running your own business, you need to be strong and resilient, but you also need to make intelligent decisions for long term success. When creating a plan, you can prepare for when your business goes through lean times but more importantly, know and appreciate the times when things are going well. By planning, you can make more informed decisions and be more secure in those decisions.

This new year is special because it is not only another year the earth has gone around the sun, but it is also a new decade. This is an exciting time, and many are looking to take the lessons learned from the past year and past ten years and put the knowledge learned into action. This can indeed be a period of great change and growth but only if we allow it to be so. We wish you all the success you allow yourself in 2020! Happy New Year!

Reflections

All marketing takes time, I tell clients it will easily take 3-6 months to see a change, and even then, it may be a small change but small changes lead to big things. We had a client reach out last week, impressed by what we had accomplished for her on one of her accounts. It was an incredible high for me, because she could see a difference. But unfortunately, that high did not last nearly as long as the lows. It’s interesting, isn’t it? This got me thinking, in business, and in life, sometimes our highest highs are outweighed by our lowest lows.

This time of year, is a time when many of us reflect over what happened throughout the past year, myself included. Reflecting back, I can absolutely tell you my lowest low of the past year. But my highest high…that is not as easily determined. It isn’t that I did not have any highs this year, I did. Those times were when I reached goals for myself, my business, and my clients. But that low, it sticks with me. And at times, it haunts me.

I want to go into year three like a three-year-old in a Batman t-shirt

Next week, Symbiotic Marketing turns 3. This is a huge milestone for many businesses because according to the Small Business Association (SBA) only about half of small businesses reach the five-year mark. It’s a scary statistic but I believe in what we are doing and believe we will reach that goal. I want to go into year three like a three-year-old in a Batman t-shirt, confident in what has been built and ready to learn more. But how can that happen if I allow my lowest low to continue to haunt me?

While there may be a whole host of reasons why businesses fail in the first five years, I believe it comes down to the owner’s confidence in what has been built and the ability to learn from mistakes. As a business owner, and as an individual, mistakes are going to happen. It is what we do with them that matters. There’s an anagram that I love, FAIL = First Attempt In Learning. Because that is what we are doing and that was certainly what the first three years in business has been for me, learning opportunities.

 

Symbiotic Marketing has changed and adapted from what it was when I first started it to today. The business has grown as I have grown. But that could not have happened if I had allowed the lows in the last three years to question what this business means, not only to myself, but to those who we have been able to help in that time.

Small steps lead to big things

Reflecting back, I can now say that it is more difficult for me to determine the business’s highest high this year because we were able to reach many goals but rather than celebrating them to their fullest, I treated them as check-marks on a to-do list. As opposed to the lowest low, which continues to be at the forefront of my mind. I look at it as a learning opportunity, to do better, to be better. As, one of my favorite authors, Maya Angelou said, “Do the best you can until you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” But it takes time. If you are also reflecting and the negatives of the past year outweigh the positives, ask yourself if you are giving the positives the power they deserve and remember that small steps lead to big things.

One final note, Symbiotic Marketing would not be where it is today without you, all our supporters, from clients to family and friends. Thank you for sharing in our dream of helping small businesses find their voice and flourish. We couldn’t be here without you. We wish you a happy and prosperous 2020 and look forward to what the new year and new decade brings.

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