Thursday, December 13, 2018

The Future of My Writing

I haven't posted in several months. The first reason is that I legitimately had NO TIME to blog. My new business took off to where it required every spare moment for a long while, early-on AJ and I were often working nonstop until 3AM-4AM. We make almost everything on the store shelves by hand and especially at first, it was very time-consuming.

Since the last time I posted we've done hundreds of business sales events, I have more employees to direct, and I'm in a different phase of life as a business owner. We've quadrupled our sales from the previous year, making us a six-figure earning business!

I've shared the whole journey to get here, with those honest ups-and-downs, on the blog; like when I confessed for sincerity's sake that I allowed myself to "go broke" (spent the last of what was once a large amount of savings from my corporate job) to get here.

A lot of people in my life didn't "get" what I was doing. It's *really* strange to leave one successful career because you created a successful brand, and then abandon that brand to start another just because you have an inkling that it's not quite the right fit. Yet I did it, and all the other unconventional things I do, because I know deep to my core that I can make anything work, I just needed to narrow in on my life's honest passion. I'm grateful that I found it and that it's going to put us in a place where we can build our dream life.

Our recent success may seem sudden, but it's been the result of years of nonstop work and experimentation.

People who refuse to play it safe are considered "crazy" in life. I reconciled with that very early on. Don't let ANYONE'S opinion of your "weird" methods keep you from making your dream life. I'm writing this during some down-time in my cozy store office. This was what I always wanted, to create my own business from the bottom-up that I LOVE working in, and have it be a business I'm passionate about AND that really helps people.

It took some early years of sacrifice and we still make sacrifices, but it's all been worth it.

* * *

That leads me to the second reason why I've stopped blogging for now. Having the break from blogging gave me an outside perspective. This blog was an integral part of the experimentation and work that got me where I'm at as a business owner, and I will always be appreciative and fond of it. But blogging isn't the medium I can or want to use. I now have more free time, yet still don't have enough of it to produce content at the quality I want to put out. I may return to that when I do have the time, but blogging has another issue. The episodic nature of posting doesn't allow for "deeper" case studies. Sticking to a post schedule can make the posts can be shallow, they can turn into quantity over quality. This is fine if you're sharing a personal life journal, but I don't want to do this because stopping to document your life frequently interferes with living in the moment. It's better to take some more time, reflect, gather info, live some more so you can report back with more wisdom on the lessons you've gained with time.

Reading a book on a topic is like "diving" into an ocean, whereas one blog post on any post is like skimming the surface. As Nicholas Carr says in The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains:

"Research continues to show that people who read linear text comprehend more, remember more, and learn more than those who read text peppered with links."

If I do write posts again, I want to take as much time as possible with them, but right now it feels more like I'll be writing studies in book form. These will probably be e-books I make available online. I've already started a few, they will be loaded with detailed information on organizing and my other-favorite subjects, running a successful creative business / how the creative mind works. (With incidental stuff about being healthy because that maximizes productivity!)

In the meantime, if you want to check out my "new" brand it's online here and on Etsy. I post our adventures on our business instagram frequently. Feel free to send questions via e-mail at hi - @ - bodysoulsoap.com.

Thank you for reading this, or anything I've ever posted here. I'm appreciative of every connection I've ever made here. Now it's time to send my messages and products via different mediums & methods! I'll post here and on our Instagram when books/guides are available, I've been documenting this journey and will share steps I took so others can find financial success with their creative dreams, too.
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Thursday, February 22, 2018

The Story of Our Little Organic Shop: Pros/Cons of Owning a Store after a Year

We opened our first brick and mortar shop late November 2016. This means we've been open a year and 3 months now! It's been amazing to look back at progress so far with AJ. We have a long way to go of course, business is fluid and ever-changing especially in the early years, but it's transformed so much from the start.


So some positive facts:

- Last weekend we made more in a day than we did January 2017
- 3-5 Markets & Events per day or weekend isn't uncommon anymore
- We keep breaking sales goes left and right it's honestly kind of status quo now
- We consistently have more events and requests than we can keep up with
- We actually 1.5 shops, now (as we call it, haha) we're renting a space with another shop nearby
- By now we've collaborated with dozens of markets and people by now, still rounding up those numbers
- We have products in 4 stores and we're working on more actively
- Sometimes I get to travel and go on neat business trips
- We're helping LOTS of people find natural products that -really- work well
- I meet awesome artisans, hippies, creative business owners and just generally interesting creative people and get unique invitations often :)


Some struggles:

- We also have to spend a LOT (SO much, OUCH) to scale and grow and this is hard to accept as a frugal soul

- I also never know how far I should "let myself go" with making things, expansion, and adding new sections and fun products. It's a tough balance because I want to go for it but on the other hand we're already doing so much.

- Time for traveling is rare and nearly impossible right now, or just seeing people. We get some free time during the weekdays when most people work and our weekends are packed full. - Although stealth bonus our hours are flexible and we sleep in more days than not which is awesome!

- Just general life balance amid the chaos and managing my stress and overwhelm.


At the moment we're actually actively looking into yet another location (eek!) although with the acceptance that this could be now, later in the year, or next year, and we're busy enough that it's totally okay no matter what time. I'm plotting some interesting new curations beyond body care. Every day we're learning, growing, and getting so much better. I look back at Spring last year and how I struggled to do my first solo market and how I now can handle one on my own with little sleep and break previously held sales numbers while I'm at it. I know when we look back at this time now we'll be amazed again and how we've grown from the time we're at now.

I just wanted to brain dump some honest progress and feelings about our new business. Honestly it's going AMAZINGLY well and we are living the dream and getting to grow and do so much we've always wanted to, now we just have to add some more structure and learn to cope with the stressful parts, haha. :) I'll of course follow-up on ways how I've overcame on the organization front.

*For behind-the-scenes check out my business & personal Instagram feeds. 


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*For behind-the-scenes check out my business & personal Instagram feeds. 

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Your New Years Resolution Super Post (Keep Going!) A Multi-Year Round-Up

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I hope your new years is going well! I've charged through January keeping resolutions and holy hell, organizing the HELL out of my home and business, taking it all to another level of productivity. Like, there were tears and fighting and pain along the way, it was that thorough.


I take my organizing dead seriously, as you know. 

It was all worth it because SO much is getting done and so beautifully, too!

I'm sharing this round-up of tips for keeping your resolutions and general new years tips goodness here on January 31st. I'm not sure if it's a worldwide problem but here in North America we tend to stop talking about resolutions and setting goals to be our best-selves as soon as February 1st hits.

But that's nonsense.
Because self-improvement is a daily thing, forever!

Let's keep going for the rest of the year! Here are some of my favorite posts to keep you going:


My KonMari Journey + FAQ/Follow-Up (Still my FAVORITE method ever, I use these it DAILY in my home and shop)



Organized Home Checklist: Transform Your Messy Life Into Streamlined Efficiency

Speed Cleaning Checklist

Perfect Picture-Hanging Secret: Hang Your Art like an Art Gallery Owner

Short-Cuts for Achieving a Healthy, Minimalist Life

Simplify Your Life in 5 Steps

10 Top Whole Living Tool and Solution List, Great Ideas for Improving Health into the Year

Detailed Small Business and Household Accounting Methods Early in the year is a great time to get started on this!

How to Methodically Plan and Write Blog Posts Consistently Over Time

Envelope Budgeting Method

Weight Loss Tip They Won't Tell You: Don't Make it About Weight Loss

Why I Won't Shut the Hell Up About Veggies: My Weight Loss Journey

My Giant New Years Weight Loss and Healthy Recipe Round-Up

5 Action Steps for Transforming Your Health

Why I'm Glad We Started Our Store the Broke No-Money Way



And don't forget to stop and remember you're exactly where you need to be.

And if you're just lost this year, here's an exercise to help you find out what you want to do with your life.

If you have any questions or are nosy for behind-the-scenes check out my business & personal Instagram feeds.


Happy New Year! (How is your year going so far?)
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