Choosing love over metrics – Lessons from Problogger 2015

Working online can be an isolating business. Sure, I get to work with women all over the world every single day, via Skype and Zoom and email and Facebook, but there’s something special about connecting in person.

One of my goals for 2015 was to find my way to one of the international conferences dedicated to the online space. Problogger had been on my radar since this time last year, when Pat Flynn from Smart Passive Income was the keynote speaker. It’s also easy to get to, requiring only a short flight across the Tasman Sea to the Gold Coast of Queensland, Australia.

Prior to Problogger, I really hadn’t dialled in to the Australian blogosphere. I first discovered the online world when we lived in the San Francisco Bay Area in 2013 and have tended to look to North America for inspiration. It was exciting to discover such a thriving community of talented people doing outstanding things so close to home. I learned a ton, made some wonderful new friendships and was inspired anew to move forward with my business.

While it’s fresh in my mind, I thought I’d share some of the inspiring messages I took from Problogger 2015.

Dream big but start small – Everyone starts at zero. You’ve just got to say your dreams out loud and “fail your way forward” until you land in the vision you’re creating for your life. Say yes to invest in your business, even if it feels hard.

Closing the gaps between your dreams and realities is all about taking imperfect action Courage is not the absence of fear, but the willingness to act anyway.

The timing is never going to be perfect and if you wait until you are 100 per cent ready, you’ll never launch anything. The internet is still new and most bloggers have times when they feel like they don’t know what they are doing.

So make do with “wobbly courage” – feel the fear and put your work out there anyway. Because what’s interesting is what happens next.

Choose love over metrics – Focus always on how you can transform your readers’ lives, rather than what you can get from them. Create amazing content that inspires your readers or helps them solve a problem, and find fun ways to surprise and delight. Have an abundance mindset and don’t be afraid to give your best work away – the goodwill will be returned to you in spades.

Know your why – Keep returning to why you do what you do. Don’t fall into online group-think, question every decision and dig down to the ‘why’ behind your ‘what’ and your ‘how’. Get really clear on how you want to show up in the world and use your values to help you make decisions in your business.

Focus – Oh this one is huge for me. I’m constantly tempted to take on new creative projects alongside growing my business. I always think I’ll fit it in somehow, but I end up burning myself out, and my health and my family suffer. No more!

Know your priorities, schedule them in your calendar and shut down email and social media while you work. At the end of the day you’ll be more proud of the content you created than the Facebook comments and emails to which you responded.

Criticism goes with the territory – It’s not always going to be easy and there will be people who will try and tear you down, maybe even within your own family or friendship circles. It’s all feedback – if you could have handled a situation better, then take it on board and learn from it. Delete any hateful comments – you don’t have to let someone mess all over your living room floor.

Fill your own cup – Don’t get stuck behind your laptop all day – make time for rest, mental stimulation, exercise, nurturing offline relationships and laughter. Subscribing to comedy podcasts is now a legitimate task on my business action list – thanks Darren Rowse.

And finally, how could I pass up this quote from the inspiring Jadah Sellnah:

It’s okay to be a glowstick – sometimes you have to break before you get to shine.

Ain’t that the truth?

My thanks to Darren Rowse, Jadah Sellner, Ruth Soukup and Heather B Armstrong, whose wisdom I have collected in this blog.

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