The State of the Website // 2016

The State of the Website // 2016

Ah, yes. I realize it may seem a bit late in the year to discuss the state of this space as, generally, the state of fill-in-the-blank is a January tradition.

Yet, I felt the need to hold off. I had thoughts brewing and plans percolating and all the fill-in-the-blanks were simply up in the air. Basically, my brain had too many tabs open and looked a whole lot like that photo up there (which, by the way, is from Sacramento's Art Hotel. If you live in the Sacramento area, you should absolutely check it out before it closes on February 13!).

Over the last several days, however, I've watched clarity present itself. As I write this post, I still have pitches and applications that have yet to garner a response, the health of family members who've been facing health challenges still feels somewhat in flux and I currently don't have a concrete date for... well... anything. 

That said, I have clarity when it comes to the big picture and still wanted to come to you all—you lovely readers who keep this space interesting and relevant—with a general idea of what you can expect on the site in the coming months.

Mainly, my goal is to continue using everything I create (this site, included) as a vehicle for connection. If there's anything I learned from sitting down in the homes, studios and office spaces of dozens of creative entrepreneurs last year it's that connecting people with stories, concepts, inspiration and opportunities is what makes this whole thing worthwhile.

I can't tell you how many times I've been tagged in Instagram photos or comments by a listener who just discovered a new favorite artist, maker, designer, etc. via the Creating Your Own Path podcast. That matters to me.

I love sharing opportunities for education and growth—in both life and business—with those who want to learn and move their dreams forward. That matters to me. 

I have a deep need to share stories outside of this platform in an effort to connect even more people to the incredible adventures to be had in this world. That matters to me.

So, here's what you'll be seeing more of in 2016: 

THE CYOP PODCAST:
Yes, it will return for a third season and as soon as I have a date set, I'll let you know! I plan to continue interviewing those working in creative fields on a weekly basis with episodes going live on Thursdays, but I'm adding a new sponsored "Tuesday Tips + Tricks" series to the mix that I think you guys will enjoy. Be sure to subscribe to both the show and my email newsletter to get the latest updates on all things CYOP. Hint: I'll likely be dropping a "State of the Podcast" episode and a "State of the Newsletter" entry very soon!

LIFE'S ADVENTURES:
I'd like to continue sharing our adventures near and far. In my mind, adventure can be as simple as checking out a new art gallery opening or as grand as an around-the-world vacation.

It's always been important to me to play—to explore work so vastly different than my own that I have to pause and reflect, to stand in the middle of a quiet forest and simply look up and to move my body in an effort to maintain my ability to create. Expect to read more about adventure and play this year.

WHAT I'M WORKING ON:
Last year, the podcast took over—no doubt about it. I put a lot of things on hold to travel and talk with amazing people and I don't regret it one bit. However, I missed working with some of my favorite editors and teams to create work for other publications and platforms.

I'll likely get back to sharing many of the pieces I write elsewhere in this space as well. I'm a huge proponent of collaboration and I'd love to be able to introduce you all to even more inspiring, fun work taking place out there in the world. 

THOUGHTS ON BUSINESS:
Please note: I didn't label this category "business advice." As someone who interviews people who, more often than not, work for themselves, I find that many people expect me to have dreams of being a business coach.

Truthfully, I have no desire to become a business coach. Will I offer up opportunities to share what I know (like courses and one-one-one consultations)? Absolutely. I think it would be silly not to help others with the specific areas in which I'm knowledgable. However, there are people who are far more qualified that offer business coaching services. I hope to connect you with them this year as well. 

I'm also someone who is fascinated by cool business ideas, trends in various industries and great resources from all categories. You'll likely hear more about all of these things in the context of my experiences, but I hope to use this space as more of a journal than a content farm full of listicles geared toward running your business.

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Sound good? I sure hope so, but I'm always open to feedback.

Though I created a fairly comprehensive FAQ section last year, I know some things could be expanded upon. If you'd like me to chat about a specific topic or concept, feel free to shout it out in the comment section below. Thanks for sticking with me all these years, my friends!


My Word for 2016: Methodical

My Word for 2016: Methodical

Whew! I'm still a little sluggish after climbing out of my self-imposed holiday season cocoon. How about you?

If you've been reading (or listening) along for a bit, you know that 2015 was a hefty year for me and mine. Though my word for last year served me well (pun intended), I still felt as though I was operating in a very reactive way. Spending so much time on the road is partly to blame and I think I simply kept moving forward without giving myself the space to put much-needed systems in place that would have made life easier.

So, this year my word is METHODICAL.

Ask anyone who truly knows me and they'll tell you that I'm a standard Type A personality. I make lists, I plan (and sometimes over plan) and the unknown makes me uncomfortable. However, I spent a lot of last year pushing my own boundaries, letting the unknown be more exciting than scary (it worked!) and allowing room for change. It was a growing year, that is for sure.

Now I'm feeling the need to let a least a little more of my Type A self back in. Going with the flow is great, but I've missed giving myself the time to map out both my work and life a bit more. I figure that if I bring some tried and true methods back into my world, I can (hopefully) capture the best of both worlds.

I can't wait to see how this word works its way into everything coming down the line in 2016. It's already been incredibly valuable as I take advantage of my podcasting break to work out a plan for Season 3 of the show.

So tell me friends: have you picked your word for the year?

p.s. Here's a little inspiration from the gal who got this whole "one little word" thing started.


Last Call: Perfecting Your Pitch Registration Closes Today!

Perfecting Your Pitch: A 3-Week DIY PR e-course for small business owners

You guys: today is the LAST DAY to register for the Winter 2016 offering of Perfecting Your Pitch!

This course is designed for any small business owner who is looking to increase their reach in the form of press coverage. No matter what type of venture you're looking to grow this year, media outreach should be an important part of your marketing strategy (here's more on why that's the case). 

Yet many small business owners either avoid it completely or fumble through the process.

After spending the first half of my career in marketing and public relations and the last several years on the receiving end of pitches (good, bad and otherwise) from small business owners, I created this e-course to help my creative friends take a DIY approach.

Perfecting Your Pitch: A 3-Week DIY PR e-course for small business owners

Starting January 11, I'll be sending out daily lessons that will demystify both new and traditional media outlets and break down the outreach process so that you can take control of your own public relations efforts this year. Trust me: it feels pretty good to know that, although you may not have control of every variable involved in press coverage, you can take the reigns on a large part of the process.

Plus, you'll get access to a private community full of small business owners who are looking to learn more about public relations and media outreach while leaning on the collective knowledge of the group. It's pretty amazing what we can accomplish when we open ourselves up to learning from one another!

If you're interested in jumping into the new year with a better grasp on the media outreach process and how you can put it to work for your business, this is the final call for new students until spring.

Oh! And did I mention that I'm offering FREE one-on-one consulting to the first 20 people who sign up and that there are still freebies available?? It's true. Click that button below to get the details and snag your spot!