2020 was my first year of business as a website designer and I had no idea what to expect!
I pivoted to website and branding design in Jan 2020 from a handmade Etsy shop and started from scratch again – It felt super exciting to be on a new journey but I was also really nervous and unsure- it felt a bit like feeling around in the dark and hoping I wouldn’t trip over or stub my toe on something. Lol
This year turned out to be one of amazing growth and I helped 20 new clients with websites and branding and really took leaps in creating a life that I was excited to grow into.
During my review at the end of the year I was pinpointing things and decisions that really help me grow my business and though I would share them with you! :
1. I changed my mindset around making and having money.
Ohhhhh I can talk on and on about this because this is one of the things that has made the biggest impact on me growing my business in 2020.
As someone whose first few jobs were centred around the mindset that “ If you’re passionate about it- why are you so keen on making money? Shouldn’t the fact that you get to do something you love be enough?” – this was one of the hardest things to overcome. I remember feeling so guilty for charging clients money to do something I really enjoyed doing( and my prices weren’t even 1/4th of what they are today!).
I know this might sound a little bit “woo-woo” but honestly, changing my money mindset allowed me to raise my prices, feel confident in what I was offering and feel less like I was falling behind other designers. I worked on ( and continue to work on) questioning beliefs I had around money and ask if they were really true and still served me or were just getting in the way and something that I needed to leave behind. It’s an emotional process sometimes and you find out things and thoughts that are cause you to procrastinate taking action or attracting more money that you never even realized- it’s a lifelong process and I’m excited to continue working on this area!
2. I took messy action – even if it felt uncomfortable
Recovering perfectionist over here! I stopped waiting for everything to be exactly right or know ALL THE THINGS before sharing my knowledge or a project with the world! Taking messy action allowed me to move forward and grow while knowing there was still a lot to learn- and that even if I failed or made a mistake- it was alright!
It also allowed me to really create content that had value and get feedback quicker so that I could tweak as I went!
3. I changed the way I offered services and shared my knowledge freely.
Full disclosure— I hated selling when I started out! I’d constantly procrastinate and internally curl up into a ball and want to die when it came time to talk about what I had to offer. I quickly realized that it wasn’t the selling I disliked- what I actually disliked was how I felt using certain traditional sales tactics – ones that made me feel like I was forcing someone into buying, or like I had to make them feel like they were lacking something in order to choose to buy my service. Learning to shift into a way of selling that helps my clients make empowered decisions- made me feel really good and allowed me to take on clients that were excited to work together!
I also stopped hoarding all the knowledge about websites and business in fear that I was giving it all away for free! Sharing my knowledge freely in FB groups and on my social media helped me work from a mindset of abundance, helped my audience view me as an expert and just enjoy what I did VS. being afraid that I would fall behind if I gave away my “secrets”.
4. I actively looked for and invested in learning new technical + marketing skills
As someone with no background in design, this was really important to me! I took every opportunity to learn new technical design skills, learn ways to market my business that fit me and what felt good to me and tweaked my process to make it a little bit better after each client.
I also learned that it is important to invest in continued education. With everything online these days- I have no doubt that you can learn anything online but freebies will only get you so far! I’ve spent a good chunk of change on both design and business courses this year and without a doubt, levelled up an area of my business or been able to raise my prices as a result.
The one piece of advice I have in this area is that it can be easy to buy a ton of courses and not complete them or to feel like you will only get better if you have the latest course from your favourite creator- but YOU are the unique part of your business and that is what sets up apart!
Make a deal with yourself to only buy a new course once every 6 months o once you completely finish a previous one!
5. I found an amazing community that allowed me to show up authentically
Oh man! Finding women online that were genuinely cheering each other on and openly discussed issues and solutions was such a game changer. I have a ton of women that feel like we’ve known each other forever when we have never even met once in real life- the internet is freaking cool , you guys!
For a long time I compartmentalized business and my personal life- feeling like I had to “show up” in a certain way in order to be taken seriously or seen as a leader- but this year- and finding a community has shown me that there are people who will choose to work with you because you are willing to be vulnerable and open!
That’s all I have for now friends- I’m excited to step into 2021 and see all the growth and change it brings.
I’ve got a ton of new posts planned for the blog that is scheduled to go live each week ( there’s that messy action again!) so stick around!
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