What's in your hand?
As time progresses I continue to get a better understanding of this whole entrepreneur gig. It really is an ongoing process. And once you think you’ve up and conquered one thing, there are like easily 10 more that you “need” to accomplish.
Don’t get me wrong. There are definitely solid moments where you have accomplished a set goal. And it’s amazing when you do. And that goal can totally be anything from obtaining x amount of friends on facebook or followers on twitter, to selling x amount of products, to obtaining x amount of new clients, to maintaining product placement in x amount of stores, to finally creating a logo you love.
For me, right now I am basking in the way I have managed to better utilize twitter, blog regularly, and how my idea to interview entrepreneurs has opened so many doors and has been so well received. A year ago, I could not have sad this. A year ago I was still looking for the “trick” to twitter. A year ago I think I may have had 7 followers and tweeted 14 times. Today I am still working on getting followers, I’ve gained some and lost some, but I’m okay with that. A year ago, my blog primarily consisted of my designs and the stories behind the designs. Lying. A year ago my blog still sold a lot of my products as my website was still amidst being designed. A year ago I was considering closing Phreedum altogether. I was considering stamping F for failure. Or to be cute, Ph for Phailure. A year ago I was focused on all I didn’t have, couldn’t do and where my business wouldn’t be. And, I was thinking and feeling this with a smile and not telling anyone except one of my trusted friends. I wasn’t even telling the therapist I was paying to see all of this a year ago.
So what’s made all the difference in a year? A lot of things. But what I think has been the biggest contributor is my realization and understanding of resources.
When I stopped spending time ruminating about all that I didn’t have or didn’t have access to and started thinking about what I did have and how I could use it to get what I needed, it made a WORLD of difference.
First I started with a list of what I had. And this list included everything from determination, creativity, time, passion, a co designer who has been 100% on board and still was since the beginning, a great screen printing team, supportive friends and family, access to books and classes to further develop skill sets I believed I needed, access to networks with other entrepreneurs, relationships with other small business owners and Executive Directors of non profits, and Jesus. And that is not the complete list of what I knew I had a year ago.
Then I started the list of what I wanted/needed to accomplish within the next several months. This list included learning how to use twitter beyond having an account (like seriously I didn’t even know how to tweet people let alone reply or retweet), developing something that was not so product marketing based but still branded the idea of the brand beyond the designs, and increase my own comfortability with networking and meeting people. And there were a few other things on the list, but this was where I wanted to start.
So next I started looking at what I had and how I was going to use it to get what I wanted. One of the best things that has been a result of going through this process, Phindout Phriday.
Each Phriday on the Phreedum blog I post an interview I’ve had the absolute pleasure of doing with other local entrepreneurs. More recently, the Phourth Phriday has been reserved for “not so local” entrepreneurs, so that means entrepreneurs from New York, Chicago, Baltimore, and San Francisco have been also sharing their journey as entrepreneurs and what entrepreneurship has looked like in her parts of the United States.
Phindout Phriday has helped me further develop relationships and expand my network. It’s also showed me how to continue to use the resource I have, but in a way that I may not have considered before. It’s also bought a lot more traffic to the blog and has helped in my overall goal of phreedum being bigger than the designs.
Freedom doesn’t happen overnight. History has shown us this. No group of people had the idea they ought be free, declared it, and got it. For some groups it has taken longer than other groups. And, beyond receiving or being granted freedom, then there is the process to establishing what that looks like. Phreedum has been no different. Being an entrepreneur is no different. It is a process, but it definitely helps when you are aware of your resources and how to maximize them to get where you want to go. I can’t wait to write and tell you all where I am a year from now.