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My Morning Routine - The 5 Things I do Everyday

Hey friends! Today I am switching things up and instead of doing a full on blog, I did a Facebook LIVE that I turned into a vlog? Is that how it is said. :) I'm sharing the 5 things I do every morning in order to ensure a productive, centered and successful day. 

Enjoy!

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What Slowing Down and Target Have in Common

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Hey friends! Happy Wednesday :) 

You're probably wondering what slowing down and Target have in common, right? Well let me tell you that as a former bullseye employee in one of their stores, Target (as well as other retailers I'm sure) are quite clever in their approach to their shoppers and driving sales. 

First, let's bring the focus to us as individuals. Take for example in the mornings when you get up does sometimes it seem like you're rushing around from one thing to the next - hitting the snooze, flying out of bed, rushing to put on your workout gear because you're running late to class, get to class and have to adjust your spinning bike in the dark because class started, rush out of class, get in your car, get home, hurry up shower, scarf breakfast down all in order to make your 9am call? Okay, so maybe your morning doesn't look exactly like this but maybe something very similar that ultimately you're rushing from one thing to the next and never really slowing down to take a moment to stop and be present. 

THIS is where Target comes in. 

Working at Target you learn some of the great tricks of working in retail, like... 

"Why is the milk all the way at the backend of the store?" Because milk runs are a thing and if customers only have the intention to purchase milk retailers are going to place it in the back of the store making you walk past everything else in hopes you get distracted and buy more stuff. 

"Why is important to "zone" shelf product?" (Note: zoning is when you pull forward all shelf product so that the shelf looks full) Because studies show that when the shelves are perceived to more full and easier to shop, it drives more sales.

Okay, NOW, my favorite one.....ever wonder why the Target Dollar Spot exists? And no, it isn't because they want to make more money, which indirectly happens because of the Dollar Spot, but it is much bigger than that. 

The Target Dollar Spot is there to make you slow down. Yes, that is correct. It is to make you, the shopper who is in a hurry to slow down. Every retailer's goal is to make you spend more money. If you walk into their store with a plan of only purchasing 5 things (which let's be honest, there's always a $50 cover charge every time you walk into Target - haha, get it? ;) and you're in a hurry, they need to find a way to slow you down and voila - Target Dollar Spot.

They slow you down AND get you in the shopping mode. Shopping is a behavior. If you start putting more things in your cart, selecting more items, you are more likely to continue that behavior during your entire trip to the store, ultimately spending more money, walking out of their store and going "What the heck? Dang it! I did it again! How did that happen?"

Well, my friend. Slowing you down is how it happened. 

Now, back to our individual daily lives. How do you find something that will get you to slow down in certain areas of your life?

First step is bringing into awareness what it is that you're doing. As odd as it may sound, take time to acknowledge what it is that you are doing in this very moment and then the next, and then the next.

It is kind of like eating or drinking. If I go to dinner at a Mexican restaurant and there are chips there I don't even think about what I'm doing, I just go for the chips and dive in. Only to regret it in the middle of my meal or post meal when I feel like I've got gut rut. Because I didn't think about what I was doing or didn't bring it into awareness. 

Even slowing down your pace in which you walk. There are simple things you can do to slow yourself down. 

I hope you enjoyed this post! And maybe even saved you a few dollars ;) 

 

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3 Easy Ways to Avoid Burnout

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In the early stages of building a business...heck...any stage in business or in life, it is easy to find yourself in a state of burnout. Meaning, you run yourself into the ground, you feel like you're running from one thing to the next without ever being physically present, you're always a little bit behind schedule and you have numerous OSM's...aka oh sh*t moments...you know, the one's when you forget to email, call, schedule something ;)

Friend, you are not alone. I've been there many times in my life and I'm sure it will happen again. But what I can tell you is that when I find myself in a place of being overwhelmed it is because I didn't do the following three things below to avoid feeling overwhelmed....

 

1. Schedule Buffers

Buffers, buffers, buffers. I love me some good ole buffers. And I'm not talking about the kind when you go bowling, I'm talking about LIFE buffers. TIME buffers. Post reading Essentialism I became very aware of how I was scheduling these so called "buffers" into my life. Buffers are time slots before and after an activity. Realistic buffers I might add. 

For example if you have back to back meetings but only allow yourself 10 minutes to get from one meeting to the next while they are both at different locations, is it realistic to assume that it will only take you 10 minutes? This is the point where you have to be honest with yourself. Before I would say, "Yup, 10 minutes is enough." But what would is happen is something would come up and I would find myself running 10 minutes behind, thus taking me 20 minutes. Especially living in the city of Chicago, anytime my Uber app tells me it takes 10 minutes to get somewhere, I automatically double the time allotment and schedule accordingly (this sometimes drives my husband nuts because we sometimes get to places quite early) however, to be on time is to be late, right ;) I would MUCH rather arrive early than late. And if you're ever worried about wasting time by getting somewhere early either pack a book, or download a podcast and bring some headphones. 

Rule of thumb - DOUBLE THE AMOUNT OF TIME YOU THINK IT IS GOING TO TAKE YOU TO GET FROM POINT A TO POINT B. 

Areas you can easily schedule buffers in your life: traveling (car, uber, taxi, train, walking, biking), scheduling calls (leave some time in between), even completing a task (if you think it will take you 15 minutes, maybe double it or increase it by 50% of the time).

 

2. Take advantage of the small windows of time

Time is one of those resources that you never get back. One of the things I noticed that I would do is think to myself when I would have an extra 10-20 minutes is that "Hmmm, I could do XYZ but I'm going to wait until I have a chunk of time to get it done." Because truthfully I would think that those 10-20 minutes or so couldn't be used in a productive manor which in reality they could be...even if it is responding to 1 email that has been on your to-do list. So instead of checking social media during those extra minutes (guilty - insert hand raise) put them to go use.

 

3. Say NO more often

This one is extremely important. I used to pack my schedule with meetings, events, travels, you name it. What I noticed though overtime is that it would cause me to burnout because I wouldn't incorporate buffers and I was moving from one thing to the next without every being present. I also found myself saying yes to things that didn't excitement and only saying yes because I either felt bad or that I should attend and that can be energetically draining. By forcing yourself to create buffers and get clear of your goals and what YOU want you'll automatically start saying no more often and my friend, THAT IS OKAY! Give yourself permission to take of YOU. 

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How to Start Surrounding Yourself with the Right People

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Friends, regardless of what journey you find yourself on it is important to surround yourself with people who make you better, encourage you and support you. When I initially went out on my own back in 2012 I was fortunate enough to be surrounded by people who encouraged me to take the leap and dive head first into entrepreneurship.

There were also people in my life who simply didn’t understand the entrepreneurial journey and while their hesitations came from a place of love and protection, had I let their voices influence my decision I may have never taken the leap.

The people you surround yourself with take you where you go in life (and don't go).

Here are 3 ways to start surround yourself with the right people...

 

1. Start Reading Books

And reading the right books. You can tell a lot about a person based on the books they’ve read. When someone shares with me they’ve read “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill or “4-Hour Work Week” by Tim Ferriss, I recognize that we have similar interests which then allows me to want to get to know that person even more.

Check out THIS blog post where I put together the Ultimate Book List.

 

2. Find The Right Events to Attend

Nothing is better than an in person connection. Search keywords in Eventbrite or Meetup.com to find people with similar interests as you.

 

3. It is okay to move on

People come in to our life for a reason and they also move out of our life for a reason. Those reasons vary from individual to individual. As you continue to grow, so will the people you surround yourself with.

 

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The one thing I do to scale my business.

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I always knew that in order to build and scale my business I would have to at some point outsource tasks that I was continually doing on a regular basis, like producing a podcast episode in order to free up my time to work on other business growing activities.

Even if you’re starting out and it is day 1 of your business  or you know you need to outsource some of your daily tasks but not sure how, or where to start then this post is for you.

A few months back I decided (decision is key) that I was ready, needed to and wanted to outsource areas of my business. These areas were taking up a ton of time and it was becoming taxing every time I needed to do it. Plus if I ever truly wanted to unplug I would need to outsource as much as possible in order to do so.
 

1. Identify

First, identify all the tasks you do on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. This doesn’t have to be super complicated. For me all I did was keep a log in my Bullet Journal that helped me see exactly what activities I was doing over, and over...and over...did I mention OVER? After a couple of weeks it came very apparent to me as to what I needed to outsource.

 

2. Systematize It

To make it easier to hire and onboard someone to take over any tasks that you do you’ll want to systematize it. Break down what you do step-by-step so that when the new person takes over he or she knows exactly what to do. A great way to do this is by using Asana. Definitely check out Megan Minn’s Youtube video of “How to Build a Content Calendar Using Asana.” I was introduced to this video via my gal pal Tess Wicks and after watching it it has completely changed the way I create systems in my business, for the better.

 

3. Record Yourself

I have found that the easiest, most impactful way to teach someone is by recording me doing it. Break each process down into bite size learning moments. I broke the entire podcast production down into almost 10 models to make them easy to digest and understand. I was able to onboard my gal so quickly thanks to recording these bad boys. Again, even though you may be starting out and are not actively seeking someone to pay to outsource, it is still worthwhile doing these activities because then when the time comes you’re ready to go!

 

PRO TIP:

Instead of posting on a job board for the position you want to hire for, first inquire amongst your friends who they use. The best referrals are the ones that come from within your network.

 

Check out these other blog posts and podcast interviews for more on scaling and productivity:

 

Want to get more done in a day? Try this.

SDH 169: How to Stay Focused and Protect What Serves You.

 

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5 Ways to Stay Focused When Working From Home

 

 

Friend, if you’re just starting out or even if you work in a corporate setting but work from home then you know the type of struggle it can be at times. #struggleisreal Somedays I can be really productive at home and other days it is really hard to get the momentum going and I easily find myself distracted by a dirty dish in the sink or a load of laundry that needs to be done. Regardless, I have noticed a few things that have helped me stay focused when working from home.

1. Eliminate distractions

If you know that a dirty dish in the sink, load of laundry, messy house will be a distraction to you, schedule time the evening before to take care of it so it is done. I don’t know about you but there’s nothing more satisfying and enjoyable waking up to a clean home (or in my case a studio apartment ;) I feel as though I’ve already started my day out ahead because everything is done, clean and I’m ready to go. So even if you're tired or you think to yourself "Ahh, I'll get it in the morning." STOP yourself and recognize that the joy it will bring you in the AM is worth your time to clean up right then and there.

 

2. Know exactly what you need to do for the day

Part of getting stuff done is know what you need to get done. If you don’t have a plan it is easy to get distracted and find yourself at the end of the day thinking you were productive but didn't really do anything that moved your business forward. I started using Megan Minn's "Ideal Calendar" day technique to help me structure my days more strategically, to get more of the right things done, to move my business forward. 

 

3. Schedule co-working dates

Okay, at least for me, I can’t work from home everyday, girlfriend needs to switch things up every once and awhile. I like change. Find someone that you know you can work alongside of and still be productive while doing so. You could even schedule your co-working time with that friend as a weekly staple where you put it on the calendar for every week, same time.

 

4. Get Dressed

For this one, get dressed the way that makes you feel good. So many people can be a boss in yoga pants and others prefer non yoga pants (<---insert skirt, jeans, trousers...you name it!). Do whatever feels good to you. Honestly for me, some days I’m in yoga pants and other days I’m in regular clothing. It happens to depend when I workout as I try to be the most efficient as possible.

But friend, what is important is for you to do you! What you don’t want to have happen is to spend energy deciding what you’re going to wear and feel guilty because you want to put on yoga pants but feel like you should put on jeans.

 

5. Own Your Work

I remember when I started out and was working from home I would allow myself to answer all the calls and text messages I received from friends and family and thought “How cool is it that I can chit chat with friends and family during the day!” and while I am grateful for the conversations that I had with them, in hindsight it wasn't helping with productivity and what I needed to get done. Stick to your schedule and own your work. It is important for you to protect your time to get your stuff done. You deserve it!

 

If you liked this article check out these podcast episodes too!

 

SDH 160: Building a Business that Fulfills You with Tonya Dalton

SDH 169: How to Stay Focused and Protects What Serves You with Amanda Boleyn

 

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Why You Need to Give Yourself Permission to Keep Dreaming

Do you dream enough? Do you have a vision of what you want your life to look like in 6 months, a year, 5 years? I’m not even talking about it being on paper, can you close your eyes and see what you want your life to look like in the future? As you’ve gotten older has your ability to dream and have a vision dwindled? If so, friend you are not alone.

A few weeks ago I was watching an interview with Mimi Ikonn (which she is amazing BTW and such an inspiration) and I couldn’t help but pause the video and let the words she just said sink in…

“People lose their vision, in life and in business. And as we get older we stop dreaming for some reason but we have to keep the vision and dream going. We have to dream.”

 

A few years back I started noticing that it became more difficult for me to dream what life would look like 6 months out, a year, 5 years.

I honestly can’t say why.

Maybe it was because I thought that by this time in my life I should of had it more figured out than what I did. 

After watching Mimi’s interview I realized she is right, we have to dream. We need to keep the childlike spirit alive and never settle what is but instead will out dreams into existence because we have that kind of power.

Dreaming of what you desire your life to look like (and business) isn't always easy. Because when we put pen to paper or start to even think of how good we truly can have it, that voice inside of our head creeps in and tries to tell us "Who are you to think you can have that? You don't deserve it. You're not worthy of that."

It isn't about getting rid of those thoughts it is about being in conversation with them. Before you sit down to dream, acknowledge them and tell them that you know they're there but this time is for you., for you to dream because you deserve it. It is your life. 

Dreaming is like a muscle and if you have been dreaming on the regular, the beginning can feel like you're walking through mud, but keep going.

Dream for 5 minutes a day, then 10 minutes, until it because unconscious to you. 

When it comes to overcoming mental chatter be sure to tune into the following podcasts:

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Want to get more done in a day? Try this.



 

If there is anything I have learned about being an entrepreneur is that sometimes you feel as if there are not enough hours in the day and then I remind myself that I have just as many hours in the day as Beyonce. And truthfully it isn’t about the number of hours in a day, it is about what we do with them and how we spend them that counts.

Below are 3 things I do to help me get more done throughout my day...

 

1. Turn Your Phone On Airplane Mode

Do you ever keep your phone near you so that "incase" someone calls or texts, you can respond right away? Me too girlfriend. Been there done that! But what I’ve noticed is that when I’m always available or within reach, it becomes a major distraction and a major hinder to my ability to be productive. What I have learned is that when I’m working on projects or doing something that requires my full attention I will switch my phone to airplane mode. That way I can stay as focused as possible. Again, I’m not perfect and sometimes do still keep the phone close to me especially  if I know someone is going to call or I’m communicating with someone but for those moments of intense focus, creative work, that phone is going to be on airplane mode. 


 

2. Break your days down into 30 minute increments (using the Pomodoro technique)

The Pomodoro technique is a great way to break your day up into bite size increments that promote productivity. The Pomodoro method is work intensely for 25 minutes and then take a 5 minute break.

Megan Minn's has a great video around the Pomodoro technique and how to create  an “ideal day” calendar. So instead of schedule a massive 2 hour chunk of time on her calendar that says “Work” she will break that 2 hour chunk down into four 30 minute chunks of time and get real specific on what she plans on doing during that time. Check out her video here.

hashtaggamechanger


 

3. Check Email Last

I’ve found that when I check email first thing in the morning I tend to not only get sucked into it but get anxious. I started noticing that I would expend all my energy on email that when it came to the important stuff that really moves my business forward I would be drained and didn’t have the mental stamina to be fully present.

Now,  mornings are spent doing intense, thoughtful work like blog creation, planning, interviews. I want to make sure that i can give 100% to the important tasks before diving into email.

 

 

For the next week, pick one of the three tips to try and see how it impacts your ability to get more stuff done.

Also, check out this interview with Tonya Dalton, SDH 160 - Building a Business That Fulfills You. Tonya is the founder of inkWELL press and is all about productivity hacking. 

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3 Tips for Setting Financial Goals When You’re Just Starting Out

Whether you’ve launched your side hustle or have recently gone full-time with your business it can be hard to “predict” revenue let alone down right uncomfortable, which can actually lead to procrastination resulting in NO revenue goals ever set.

Exhibit A. Yours truly.

For a majority time of my solopreneur world when it came to consulting that is, projects and gigs flowed to me and I never felt I needed to keep track because projects just came to me.

Now transitioning to running She Did It Her Way full-time it is a bit different. I no longer want my business to be just me. I’m building a business that requires more than just one person and it is a chance to take everything I learned (didn’t do or did do) from the past 5 years and apply it to the current scenario.

The whole process seemed to be a bit overwhelming so I sat down with close friend of mine who had spent years coaching large companies on their business and  helped me actually set a plan in place.

Before you start on any of the follow, first identify how much money you want to make in a year. This will help you benchmark as you work your way through.

Here are the 3 key takeaways for anyone who is just starting out...


1. Identify Revenue Streams

Write down all the things that produce revenue in your business. It could be affiliate, product, services, events, speaking, anything that brings in revenue for you and your business.

Then identify how much it is currently bringing in per month (no matter how much - write it down). Times that number by 12 (for months in a year) and then add up all the potential revenue streams.

Depending on how much you want to make in a year this shows you where you may need to add additional revenue streams or increase prices. But ultimately it provides more information so you can take action.

 

2. Be Conservative

If there are some categories that you’re unsure of or you just launched, be conservative. Meaning under estimate the revenue vs overestimating and falling short of actual revenue later on. 

 

3. Identify behaviors

Once you’ve identified your revenue streams, then go back to each stream and identify what the behaviors are to help you reach your goal. Schedule that behavior in your planner, calendar of even Asana. Megan Minns has a great Youtube Video on how to make Asana work for you.

Happy Wednesday friends! If you have any other topics or questions, please suggest them below!

Xo,

Amanda
 

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How to Get More Done with These 3 Hacks

1. Self Imposed Deadlines

Let’s say you’ve always wanted to speak on a specific topic but never find the energy or determination to actual build out the presentation. What you do is apply/sign up for a speaking opportunity on that topic. Let’s say you get it, now you have no choice but to build out that presentation. You’ve given yourself zero outs. It is go time. #selfimposeddeadlines

 

2. Know the Difference between Energy and Time

Become aware of the not only the time you spend doing a task but also how much energy it takes to do that task. Ever dread doing something that you procrastinate doing it? Every time you procrastinate or think about doing it but don’t actually do it, you zap energy and you waste energy.

We all have things in life and in our business that when we put our head down, time flies. Know what I’m talking about? Can I get a hand raise?! For some people it may be that when you write or perform design work, time just flies by but when it comes to invoicing, scheduling social media, your energy drops and what takes you 15 minutes to complete feels like it takes all day to complete and you’re drained by the end of it.

Identify which tasks are the ones that give you energy and the ones that deplete your energy. Of the ones that deplete your energy see if you can outsource or automate them so you don’t need to spend as much time thinking about them or even doing them, saving you both time and energy. Which leads me to my next point….

 

3. Identify the type of task at hand

Sometimes there are tasks that only we can do that we may not be super jazzed up to complete but we know that it must get done. Think presentation, book, blog posts, research. As Brian Tracy would say, “Eat the frog.” Do the most dreaded task first and get it done. That way you can go throughout the rest of your day knowing that the “worst” thing is out of the way. You’ll be able to move through your day with more ease versus a lingering thought about something you need to get done.

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3 Steps to Take When You Have a Business Idea

In the beginning, having a business idea but not being sure on where to take it and what to do next can be a bit defeating at times. I totally get you, I’ve been there before. Overtime I’ve been able to develop a process for myself that helps me really see if the idea is something that I want to pursue long-term and helps me see if I’m ready to take the next step with my idea.

So you might be sitting at your desk, daydreaming of all these amazing ideas you have but you're just not sure where to start or let along how. 

No fear! Take some pressure offer girlfriend! It is all good. To get you started begin with these 3 steps...

 

1. Brainstorm Without Judgement

If you have an idea, start writing down everything about that idea. “What does it look like? How will it unfold? Who will use my product/service?”

Don’t think, just write!

Give yourself permission to dream and to brainstorm. Allow yourself to fully be in the brainstorming state with no judgement.  Be mindful of that little voice inside your head that hangs out and wants to tell you from time to time “Hey, that idea doesn’t make sense! Why are you putting it down on paper?? How are you going to execute it?” Acknowledge that voice and continue writing. 

Carve out a block of time and sit with your ideas and thoughts and put pen to paper. Seriously, grab a blank sheet a paper, don't worry about where you're going to save the paper, how it fits in your journal, just start ;)
 

2. Step away

The next step after you've spent time writing down your ideas is to take sometime and step away from your list. 

Maybe a few days, maybe a week. But enough time that will allow you some space and so you can come back to your list with fresh eyes.
 

3. Revisit

Now for the revisit. When you go back to your list, take inventory about how you feel reading each idea - “Is this something that I truly want to do or did it just sound like a good idea?” Circle 2-3 ideas from that list that you’ll use in the stage of exploring.

 

I still use this same process today in my business. I am an individual full of ideas and while majority of the ideas sound like a great idea they’re not always the best use of my time. Usually an idea will pop into my head, I act on that inspiration and take notes, step away and revisit.

Sometimes during the revisit phase I find myself chuckling and saying, “Wow. Yeah, that idea sounded like a wonderful idea but definitely doesn’t make sense for my business," and that is TOTALLY okay! That’s why you do this process. It will help you  save time and energy in the long run while helping you get focused.

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3 Reasons Why You Must Be Tracking Your Time

 

Hello beautiful friends and happy Friday! Was anyone a wee bit thrown off by the short week? (assuming you live in the states and celebrated 4th of July?) Welp, I definitely was. Hence why this blog post is a few days late but we’re here and we made it, right?

Whether you’re in the beginning stages of your business or a seasoned entrepreneur there are only benefits when it comes to tracking your time. Toggl is a great tool to track your time - they have an app and desktop platform so you can move between both platforms and better yet...it's FREE!

 

Here are 3 reasons why you must be tracking your time….

 

1. INCREASED PRODUCTIVITY

Tracking your time offers an accountability coach. Because overtime you press the start button to track your time you are making a commitment to that task at hand. That way if you ever have an impulse to check social media, to check email, before you do so, you remind yourself of what you set out to do thus making you more focused and productive with your time.

 

2. BETTER PRICING

By tracking your time you’re able to see where you spend it and how you spend it. It also may give you the confidence and a strong case as to why you need to increase your prices because you begin to see that those emails you send back and forth to your client, the travel time and prep time are associated with the product you sell. 

For example let’s say you run a coaching business and you charge $100 per hour for your services. So when you meet with your client you bill $100. But you’re not including the hour prep time so effectively you’re working 2 hours and only getting paid for one. You may need to adjust your pricing to reflect how much time you actually spend for your client. 

 

3. SCALABILITY

Tracking your time will help you become aware of the tasks you’re completing and the ones that may be time to outsource. Are you doing repetitive tasks every day, week or month? Are they ones that you can separate yourself from and pay someone else to do? By outsourcing tasks it frees up time for you to work on your business versus always in your business.  

 

CHALLENGE

Download Toggl on your phone, create and account and track your time for a week (5 work days thats is). And start to see where you’re spending your time. This is great whether you’re an entrepreneur or someone who is in transition of full-time corporate with side hustle. What gets measured gets managed. And when we measure our time, we manage it better. 

 

Have a wonderful weekend!

Amanda

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Help! I want to start a business but I have student loans.

 

Let me first by saying that I am in no way a financial expert and anything that follows this statement is of my own experience and all opinions are my own.

If you want to start a business but you have student loans there are a few things you can do that I did to help find what will work best for you.

When I graduated in 2010 I had accumulated a decent amount in student loan debt. My education was 100% self-funded. My loans were made up of private, federal and parent plus with interest rates ranging from 3.24% variable LIBOR to 7.75-8.4% fixed.

It is key to remember that everyone’s situation is different including their risk tolerance. To say there is a one size fits all answer to this question is not possible. Everyone has different financial goals, things they want to achieve and different values that will dictate their actions.  

Here are 3 steps I recommend that will ultimately help you find clarity and put together a plan.

 

First - Set the stage

Understand how much do you owe along with corresponding interest rates.

First things first, how much do you own? What is the total amount? I found it helpful to create an excel document that has the name of who the loan is with, login and password (I also suggest using Lastpass instead of keeping that information on a Googledoc or somewhere that it could be hacked), the interest rate, monthly payment and amount left to pay for each loan.

There are different ways you can track this - you can login manually each month to see or if you use Mint, it will automatically update the information for you.

By doing this it will help you prioritize and you can ask yourself, “Are there any loans with an extremely high interest rate that I should make a goal of paying off before quitting my job?”

 

Second - Take inventory

What does your budget look like? Do you have a budget?

Do you rent or own? If you rent, when your lease is up could you move into a smaller place that would save even $100 a month? What about cars? Would it make sense to see your vehicle and buy a beater in order to not have a monthly car payment?

Again, everyone is different.

If you’re looking for tools to help you budget you can check out my blog post, “My 3 Favorite Money Management Tools” HERE.

 

Third - Make a plan

Now that you know how much you owe and interest rates, and your monthly budget it is time to make a plan. Do you want to pay your loans off entirely before you launch your business? Do you want to pay off the loan with the highest interest rate and then start your business? Whatever it is, make a plan.

How are you going to do it? Are you going to make better money decisions? Pick up a part-time job? Write it out on a piece of paper and set deadlines. 

 







 

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3 Lies We Tell Ourself When We Know It Is Time to Move On

 
 

Moving on can either mean, moving on to your “Bridge Job” (If you’re not sure what a "Bridge Job" is you can read my blog post here), taking action on your business idea or getting serious about your side hustle so you can ultimately position yourself to make The Leap

Deciding to leave your comfort zone (in this case your current job) is a personal choice and a personal journey. Everyone goes at their own pace and only YOU can decide what is best for you and when is the right time.

For me I said that I “wanted to quit my job” for months before mustering up the courage to leave and find my bridge job. Looking back there were 3 key lies I kept telling myself but should have taking as a signs that it was time to move on sooner. 

 

1. More Bad Days than Good Days

Lie We Tell Ourselves: “I’m going to have bad days regardless of where I work or what I do. That’s just how it is supposed to be.”

Not true. It certainly can be that way if you want it to be or if you chose for it to be that way. I remember feeling guilty for wanting to “get out” of the rat race and “Who I am to be that person that is fortunate enough to actually do what I love?” I used to see other people enjoying what they were doing but thought that could never be me. Until I met one of my mentors, Adam Carroll also known as "AC." AC showed me that you can indeed live a life that lifts you up and still do the work that lights you up.

Takeaway: Start to surround yourself with people who are where you want to be and doing what you want to be doing because you cannot be what you cannot see.

 

2. Conversations with co-workers that always results in negative talk

Lie we tell ourselves: "Every company has its issues. I feel better when I vent anyway."

And while that might be true that you feel better when you vent but not needing to vent at all is much better. First, no company is perfect. Not even the one you build as an entrepreneur. But there’s a major difference between complaining and discussing a topic that involves a solution. It may feel good to vent but it creates a toxic environment. Because every time you’re around your co-workers all you do is talk about work and it becomes draining. Some of it may be the environment of your work and some of it may be the people. For me it was the environment, not the people. 

Takeaway: Protect yourself from negative talk and focus on refraining yourself as much as possible. Also note that it may be a sign to find a different environment (aka...JOB).

 

3. Working to the point our mental and physical health suffers.

Lie we tell ourselves: “I’m important because I'm so busy because my work is sooo important.” (<---that would be your ego talkin’ my friend ;)

 The idea of having a job that requires long hours all. The. time. May sound important but when we start sizing up how many hours we work it is usually a sign that we have nothing else to measure like how much we value the work we do and the impact it has or dare I say...enjoy the work we do.

Also, when you’re working towards something you care about you don’t even pay attention to the number of hours you work or frankly have time to share how quote un quote BUSY you are. Because it doesn’t matter. And girlfriend ain't got time for that!

Whether you work a corporate job or are building a business there will absolutely be times where you work more than other times.. what I'm asking is...are you working so much that it is never ending work that depletes your motivation for anything and everything, numbs you emotionally and changes who you are (and not in a good way). And especially for women, our hormones and adrenals get out of wack because we've deprived ourselves of sleep, eating foods that nourish us and working out becomes a distant dream and then it becomes a vicious cycle.

 

If you've ever told yourself any of these lies, I get you. I was there too. I promise you that it is possible to enjoy what you do everyday, to be surrounded by positive people all while being healthy. 

I hope you enjoyed this post! Have a wonderful week!

xo,

Amanda

 

 

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Top 5 Books Every Entrepreneur Needs to Read

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Hello friends!

First of all, choosing only 5 top books was really hard. I absolutely love reading so when I forced myself to narrow it down to a digestible amount of books to read (in this case 5) it wasn't easy.

So here, on this blog post I'm listing the top 5 books I would start with as an entrepreneur and then at the bottom of the page I created a massive list of books that either I recommend or the guests who've come on the show have recommended. 

Ready?

Okay, here we go!

 

1. "Daring Greatly" by Brene Brown 

Why I love this book? 

Because it is real and it is raw. As an entrepreneur we put ourselves out there, in the "arena" where we bare it all. It isn't easy to do but by doing so and having the courage to do something we believe in is what allows us to live our dreams. And when you're doing it, it can be extremely scary, lonely and confusing. 

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.
— Theodore Roosevelt

2. "Essentialism" by reg McKeown

Why I love this book? 

I read this book 4 years ago and it is even more relevant today. With information overload and especially in the early stages of starting and growing your own business it is easy to confuse stuff, noise with revenue generating activities. How do you eliminate and understand the essentials in life and business.

 

3. "Think and Grow Rich" by Napoleon Hill

Why I love this book? 

This book is a compilation of what makes a person successful including strong beliefs, vision and their thoughts. Napoleon makes the case that it is our thoughts that produce all our results in life. I talk about it in one of my "5 Minute Friday's" HERE. It has completely changed the way I think today. Helped me understand my limiting beliefs and how I can change my thinking to change my world.

 

4. "Profit First" by Mike Michalowicz

Why I love this book? 

If you're thinking about starting a business or already have one, this book is everything. Mike walks through the mindset and how to build in profitability. He also provides actionable steps to take, no just theory; like open separate bank accounts for profit, operating, taxes and payroll to help manage money flow. Definitely must read. 

 

5. "4 Hour Work Week" by Tim Ferriss 

Why I love this book? 

I'm a massive fan of Tim Ferriss and his work but why I love this book is because he provides simple examples and demonstrations on how to get more done by outsourcing, automating and systematizing , allowing you to live more or your life. It is a great read when starting out. 

 

Those are my top 5! If you're feeling REAL ambitious (and of course you are!) I encourage you to download The Ultimate Book List that includes additional recommended books by myself and guests from the podcast around mindset, productivity, self-help, operations and more!

 

 

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5 Ways to Make Money on the Side to Help Start Your Business

Take advantage of the extra hours and even minutes in your day to earn extra cash to put towards starting your business whether that is building up a savings, investing in equipment, a coach or education. 

Sleep one hour less, say "no" to a happy hour and let's get to work!

Here are 5 ways to make money on the side to help start your business. 

 

1. Become a Virtual Assistant

One of my good gal pals and former O.G. to She Did It Her Way, Molly Rose has been a VA (Virtual Assistant) to entrepreneurs all across the globe for the past 4 years. She started out small and grew her business to the point it has replaced her corporate income and then some. Bonus! Being a VA let's you be location independant so that means you can work from wherever you want. Molly has legit traveled the world all while working and making money.

If you're not familiar with what a VA is or services a VA can offer then make sure you check out Molly's online course that teaches people how to be a VA. 

Check it out right here.

Once you're on the site, click on the "Featured Course" to learn more.

 

2. Freelance Writing

I have plenty of friends in my network who either freelance for a living or do it as a way to make more money on the side of they full-time gigs. Freelance writing is a great way to gain exposure, practice your skills and of course make income on the side. 

Here are a 4 websites to help get you started in exploring opportunities:

 

3. Create a Profile on Upwork

This is a great option if you’re someone who has a unique skill and something you could offer to people. Create a profile on Upwork and get a gig. There are so many services and opportunities out there from graphic design, to digital marketing, to copywriting, you name it! If you’re not sure what you would offer, hop on the site and take a look through the jobs that are already out there to give you ideas.

 

4. Sell Your Stuff....seriously! 

I’m a minimalist at heart and about two years ago I started getting serious about purging my belongings and trimming down to only essentials. Through that process I found a ton of stuff that I was able to sell and make some serious cash from it.

Websites that I’ve used:

Ebay

Letgo (app)

Consignment stores

Go through your belongings and make a pile of all the things you don’t need or want anymore. Then determine what is sellable and what is donation. With the stuff that is sellable go online and determine an appropriate price. Take good pictures and provide a good description of the product to increase the chances of a sale. I've made thousands of dollars selling stuff online that I didn't want.

 

5. Reach out to your network and offer services

Contact your network asking them if they need help with anything, especially small business owners. This is a chance for you to make money on the side and learn a new skill or practice the one that you already have.

View it as a learning opportunity. You never know what people need help with. Don’t be afraid to ask. You never get what you don’t ask for.

 

Let me know if you do any of these! I would love to hear how it all goes!

Thanks for following along!

XX,

Amanda

 

 

 

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What's a bridge job? And why is it important to starting your business.

This post is for the person who wants to start their own business but cannot find the time or energy outside of their corporate job because they work 12+ hours a day, on top of a commute, on top of life.

I get you. I was there too.  

My first job out of college was working in Target stores as an Executive Team Leader in West Des Moines, IA. The days were extremely long, very intense and it was difficult to find energy and time to want to do anything but escape through movies, socializing or catch up on sleep when I wasn’t at the bullseye working.

Within 6 months of working at Target I knew that it (as in the corporate world) wasn’t for me long-term but I wasn’t sure what next steps looked like.  

10 months into my role I had hit a breaking point. Around that time I had been battling with myself mentally. It felt a little like this.....

I didn't know what I wanted but I knew that I didn't want to be where I was.  

Also within the first 10 months of my new role I was performance managing 2 of my direct reports that consisted of weekly coaching sessions, securing additional training for them all while finishing any work that was unfinished from said direct reports day in and day out.

It wasn’t until I had worked 13 out of 14 days that I found myself sitting at my kitchen table on a Monday evening after being Leader On Duty at 7pm, eating dinner in the dark listening to a sermon... that I had finally broken down.  

"It was then that I drew a line in the sand and made the decision that I was going to leave. I had no clue what was next but it was in that moment I found much needed relief."

 It was a struggle to make that decision. I spent days with one foot on the dock and one foot on the boat going back and forth. I knew that if I stayed for one more 18-month rotation after my first role there was a good chance that I would have gotten my own store, made six-figures at the age of 25 but on the other hand, my soul felt empty and I couldn’t ignore the voice inside.

It was then when I made the decision to leave that opportunities started popping up. I was ready to leave.  

I had found my bridge job. I took a position at Wells Fargo as an HR Recruiter through a 3rd party agency. I took a pay cut, forfeited my benefits including retirement and PTO and picked up a part-time job at a local gym so not only could I get a free membership, make some extra cash but I took advantage of the slow times to read...a ton.

The job that is going to bridge you from where you’re at now and where you want to be. Ultimately that bridge job lead me to where I am today.

If you want to quit your job and start a business don’t get discouraged about how. Take baby steps. Often times when people quit their job it is because there’s been months of tiny decisions setting themselves up to be in the position to start their business.

Is there another role or job you could do that can give you hours back to your life, skills that you'll eventually need for when you start your own business?

 

 

 

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Want to quit your job and start a business? Read this first.

 
 

Quitting your job and starting a business is easier said than done. There are a lot of emotions that come into play not to mention the whole, "How am I going to eat and pay myself?" conversation. I've worked, mentored, coached people into leaving their 9-5 and starting a business. I've seen what works well and what doesn't work. 

The thing to know is that leaving your job and launching a successful company can be done. Here are a few key pointers and questions to ask yourself before quitting your job:

What's your comfort level?

The only thing certain about entrepreneurship is that it can be unpredictable, especially in the beginning.

In the beginning you’re still figuring everything out from your product offering, target market, your marketing strategy, your expenses, what a normal day looks like, consistent clients and no day is ever the same. Your income is usually never the same either. You have to be comfortable with being uncomfortable and have the persistence along with the patience to ride the wave that all entrepreneurs experience in the beginning.

What do your monthly expenses look like?

This is so important. Before you do anything tally up your monthly expenses and see what amount you need to clear in order to survive every month especially in the beginning. Monthly expenses can include rent/mortgage, car payment, insurances (renter’s/home owner’s, health, car, dental), student loans, utilities,  food, going out, phone (this may look different if you have a family). It is vital to know what you’re working with.

When I quit my job I had the luxury of doing so at a younger age; no family or kids although I had just about every other expense listed above including a student loan payment that could have passed for a rent payment ;)

You have to do what is best for you and everyone's situation is different.

Where there is a will, there is a way
 

How much do you have saved?

No amount is the right amount because everyone is different. We all live in different cities, have different expenses. The important piece is to ask yourself, “What am I most comfortable with?” And it also depends what is on the other side for you when you quit your job. When I left my corporate job and started freelancing I had a seven month project ahead of me so having a large savings wasn’t something I believed I needed, but again everyone is different. I highly recommend having anywhere from 3-6 months of savings to support yourself because you can’t predict the future, you can only influence it. Having a savings is like having an insurance policy.

The last thing you want to do is think about how you’re going to eat while building up your business. Having to think about basic needs during that time will take away from your ability to be creative and grow your business.

Once you figure out how much you need on a monthly basis, times that by how many ever months you think you need in order to be comfortable.

What are you doing on the side?

Depending on how serious you are with quitting your job and pursuing entrepreneurship this may look different.

The most successful people I’ve seen, who have quit their job to pursue their own business are the ones who launched their business while working their 9-5. These folks became laser focused with their side hustle and extremely disciplined with their time outside of their 9-5. They worked a few hours on their side-hustle before going into work, worked their 9-5 and came home to work more on their side hustle. 

Building up a side hustle takes focus, persistence and work. You will find yourself saying no to happy hours, foregoing weekend events and not going out because you want to be an entrepreneur and you understand that short term sacrifice is worth the long term gain.

Expenses to factor in when you’re an entrepreneur

Being an entrepreneur has its own set of expenses like figuring out your own health care insurances (especially if you’re single). If you go through the government exchange as a single person with the lowest quality package who is fairly healthy, you could be looking at anywhere from $260 - $300 a month, not including dental. Dental can be anywhere from $40-80 a month depending on what you chose.

Disability insurance is another one. You may have been receiving disability insurance as part of your benefit package from your employer but when you start your own business, you are your employer. I can’t stress it enough to have some form of disability insurance. Disability is for if something were to happen to you that made you unavailable for work this way you would still have some form of income paid out to you so you could live.

Lastly, taxes. For every dollar your business brings in set aside roughly 20-30% for taxes (this percentage may vary depending upon your income and how you incorporate). Create a separate checking out for taxes that way when it comes time to pay your quarterly taxes you have money set aside.


Create a plan

So you’re working your 9-5 and you want to start your own business, now is the time to make a plan. To help you get started, consider the following:

  • Monthly expenses

  • What do I want the next 3-6 months look like?

  • How will I structure my days

  • What am I saying yes to and no to?

 

Remember, no one is the same.

I've worked with people that were able to leave their job in 6 months, others it took almost two years to get themselves in a position to where they felt comfortable. Remember, everyone is different and no one is the same. But the sooner you get started, the sooner you get started. 


 

Podcasts to help get you going:

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Want to be featured on She Did It Her Way website?

Hello hello loves!

Happy Wednesday! There is so much energy flowing through my body I cannot wait to share so much of what I've been learning over the past month in tomorrow's solocast....so stay tuned!

Today's blog post is semi blog post, semi asking for help. I want to feature women who have taken the leap to start their own business so that they can share their wisdom with other women who are thinking of taking the LEAP themselves. 

I call the transition from corporate to entrepreneurship: The Lead Up, Leap and Land (more on this later!). But for now if you're someone who has quit your job to pursue entrepreneurship, and haven taken the LEAP we would LOVE to hear from you. 

All you have to do is fill out the form below :)

Ahhh this is going to be amazing! Can't wait and thank you guys!

 

Love,

Amanda

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How hungry are you?

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Forget about what everyone else is doing. All that matters is what YOU are doing. Forget about what everyone else has whether it is a successful business, a nice home, a nice care, freedom, flexibility, financial abundance. What matters is what YOU have and what YOU are doing.

We all face headwinds in life. We all have our own struggles. Which oftentimes is what we identify with. “I’m this way because of BLANK (insert a struggle).”

What we fail to recognize most of often (again, not all the time) but we undervalue the tailwinds that help us. Leaving us ungrateful and unhappy.

If we’re not careful we can let our headwinds define us, leaving us in a victim mindset. I know this because I’ve been in this mindset before. I used to let many things victimize me when I was younger.

Only as I got older I learned that it wasn’t productive, nobody cared and it wasn’t going to lead me to a successful life.

 

But what’s the single most important key to success?

 

It’s hunger.

 

Hunger trumps ego. Hunger is a muscle.

 

Biography is not destiny.

 

Hunger creates destiny.

 

How hungry are you to get where you want to go?




 

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