September is one of my favourite times of the year, it feels like a second January… but it’s important not to let the renewed motivation become overwhelming.
My husband (I can say that now!) is a teacher, so it's always a bit of a fresh start for the four of us: he and my eldest, Harry, head back to school and my youngest, James, starts back at nursery. Meanwhile, I stay at home and enjoy the extra hours of peace that I can finally use to get my head back into my business.
I always feel relaxed and motivated about work at this time of the year. Do you find that too?
I have loved seeing my social media timelines filled with excitement from fellow working mums. This time last year, there was a lot of nervousness about COVID, but this year we’re able to focus on what we’ll do for ourselves – the way it should be.
It’s as if the whole business world has jumped on a wave of confidence and we’re enjoying the ride it’s going to take us on. We’re all about to set off on a new page for our careers and we’re taking each other along the way.
We’re ready to get back to normal, we’re ready to find a routine, we’re ready to make the most of the time we have without the kids and we’re so ready to no longer have to hear that dreaded call: ‘Mummyyyyyyyyyyyyy….’
New chapter for businesses
This time last year September, I'd spent 6 months of lockdown and the summer holidays delving deep into my business plan, setting things up ready for what I wanted to do and getting projects started: I launched myself as The Content Planning Wizard and began offering the popular Content Planning Power Hours.
This month was the time when I always knew I was going to be able to go ‘all-in’ with my ideas and set about making them happen. With Harry starting reception class and James back in the baby room at nursery, I could focus on delivering my new services and helping new clients.
Having been a social media manager for over 4 years, it was hard to make the transition into becoming a social media coach, but the time I’d had to plan and relaunch myself allowed me to do that in a way that appeared seamless to anyone who was watching (it wasn’t quite that smooth, in truth!).
But as with the good intentions that we set for ourselves in January, it’s important to make sure we don’t set our sights too high and become overwhelmed. That we don’t push ourselves too hard.
You see, the end of 2020 and beginning of 2021 went well for me. My free workshops were more popular than I ever could have expected, my Power Hours were getting booked and people were coming to me for help and advice with their social media…
But life happened and things changed. James was repeatedly sent home from his childcare due to Covid precautions (because a two-year-old NEVER gets a temperature normally *rolls eyes*) and Harry too was coming home early due to issues with using the toilet.
Then in February, I began working with a challenging client and the energy I put into trying to make sure their content was perfect meant that I didn't have the time to focus on promoting my own services, on helping my own clients, and on showing up online.
Essentially, my posts became sporadic and inconsistent (exactly what I tell people not to do) and – to put it bluntly - that impacted on my sales. I took my eye off my own goals and moved away from my plan, but I've learned from that.
A few months after going my separate way from the client, I ended up spending a week in hospital with James (who is now absolutely fine, thankfully) and the time out from work brought me the headspace I needed for a ‘moment of clarity’.
Watching him playing, I realised I was enjoying being his Mum, because I didn’t have my mind distracted by work. It was a bit of a revelation that, actually, the lifestyle I have (i.e. being dictated to by a five and two-year-old) means they are my priority there and the rest needs to fit around them.
I had been so focused on the sales and income goals that I hadn’t given myself the space for things to go wrong: for a client project to take longer than expected, for the boys to be sent home while I was meant to be working, for the late nights in front of the computer to catch up with me.
Unfortunately, that led to some of my work and my own content being completed late and containing errors – a disaster for a new business trying to build a good reputation. I'd set myself too much to do and ended up letting myself and other people down.
So, these massive targets I was setting for myself are to be a part of my life no longer. This September is the chance for a new chapter in my business, but I’m going to see where each step takes me, rather than panicking about things not going to plan.
One step at a time
My mantra for a while has been ‘Do the next right thing’ (Yep, that’s from Frozen): it’s a way to remind me to take one step at a time, focusing on the most important task each day – and nothing more.
If you’re feeling swept along by the positivity surrounding business-women on social media at the moment – enjoy it… but don’t allow it to pressure you into trying to do too much at once.
If you’d like to find out about 5 easy steps you can take to improve your social media reach and get your content strategy sorted, I’m running a FREE 5 Day workshop later this month and you can sign up by emailing me.
Alternatively, for a 60-minute, 1-2-1 call with myself that will help you wave a magic wand over your social media pages, you can book here: https://calendly.com/contentplanningwizard/content-planning-power-hour-for-members
The kids are Back to School now and it's (finally) time for us to knuckle down and focus on work again. Is #socialmedia on your to-do list? It needs to be! But it doesn't have to be a long and arduous job. Join my FREE workshop from Monday 20th September.