Biggest Lessons from 2016
Happy New Year! As many expressed all over social media—2016 was rough and it was no different for me. There were so many ups and downs, changes, challenges, revelations and accomplishments, but none of these things were easy to come by. I started the year quitting my job of almost three years, and focused only on my business for about eight months.
I would have continued to forge through the struggle of being a new full-time entrepreneur, however, my infertility diagnosis and new found medical bills changed everything. This led me to ending the year with two different jobs in five months.
These things alone led to some humbling lessons for the year and I enter 2017 with different eyes. Check out the four lessons 2016 taught me.
Don’t Fail to Plan
When I left my job in January, I had ideas of what I could do to make money and had monetization ideas for ideas, but that’s all they were. Ideas. These things weren’t already in effect. They weren’t already bringing me enough money to be sustainable and didn’t take various business and personal expenses into account. So while ideas are great and may be successful, don’t fail to plan the execution and don’t plan on everything coming easy.In 2017, ensure that your ideas are more than ideas. You need plans behind them. Click To Tweet
Stay in Your Own Lane
When you’re seeking ways to monetize as a blogger or seek a new income stream as an entrepreneur, you should look at the skills that you have first. Figure out what you’re already working with and center some ideas around that. Don’t look at others, and think you can do the same thing and have the same success. I definitely ended up utilizing the design skills I already had, but in the beginning I tried to base a lot of my execution off more established freelance designers. It’s great to seek inspiration from these folks, but fully replicating systems (which they share for that reason to help others) isn’t always the easiest thing to do in the beginning. You have to build up to that.In 2017, be sure to stay in your own lane. Use people as inspiration, but find your own way. Click To Tweet
Don’t Over-Exert Yourself
Being a full-time entrepreneur is no cake walk. Especially when you have emergencies or a new bills that arise. You have to figure out where that income is coming from or be able to quickly replenish. This often leads to freelancers taking on more work, which can quickly lead to burnout. I remember burning the midnight oil because I had marketing material designs, two blogs to design, plus work for my own business to complete in a week before surgery. I never planned to work on all these things to all happen at once, but people reach out and need something last minute, and you try to be helpful so the client continues to come back. However, no is not a bad word in this field.Although we may feel like it, we do not have super powers. Its okay and healthy to say no. Click To Tweet
You won’t be perfect. You’ll make mistakes and it’s not the end of the world. You work through those mistakes, fix them if you can, and if you can’t be transparent and apologetic. During the time I discuss above, I had too much on my plate and couldn’t seem to catch up. I had a website client waiting on work from me and I hadn’t delivered. I tried to make up for it and redeem myself, but you won’t always be able to do that. Learn the lesson, fix the problem and do better in the future.You aren't perfect. You're going to make mistakes. Learn the lesson, forgive yourself & move… Click To Tweet
What lessons did you learn in 2016? Comment below!