Thank goodness, praise all that’s holy, oh happy day: it’s finally February. And now the new year can begin in earnest. At least for me.

January kicked my ass and taught me so many lessons. Truly it steamrollered all the pretty little plans I’d made in December and before, tossed all the 2018 glittery hopes and dreams and sketches overboard into the raging sea. Down they went. And so long to them. I see them now for what they were: hopes and dreams and pretty little sketches. January wised me up, woke me up to a reality I had clearly been avoiding. Those pretty sketches will have their day, but they can’t be first. No, sir. They cannot.

Biggest thing learned during that wretched roller-coaster ride of a month?

Structure before growth.

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Yep, it was that basic. See, I had all these plans. Plans to grow, spread my wings, change it up. But, um, because I hadn’t built the basic structures necessary, the right platform to stage that flight from, 

crash

&

burn

Over and over again all of January, that’s how it felt. Uncomfortable. Not a little gnashing of teeth. Yes, some tears. Frustration with not being able to work on what I really wanted to work on. Frustration with being “stuck” with tasks that should’ve been / could’ve been delegated. Stress from the deadlines, and from feeling like it was just me pushing this burden of details uphill.

Oopsies, cart before horse.

My bad. I see that. So instead of the glittery plans I came up with in December, this first quarter is gonna be different. This quarter I’m actually going to work on the structure of my business, so that I can actually sustain some growth this year, i.e., grow without destroying myself in the process. So that when I next step up, wings spread, ready to go, I’ll have actual lift-off. 

What’s that gonna mean? Over the next roughly 60 days: systems, for one, and omg, Basecamp, thank goodness, FINALLY, to track progress on repetitive tasks and projects. [‘Cause seriously, much as I love them, there is a real limit to the usefulness of Excel and post-it notes.] Delegation of all of the tasks I possibly can. Hiring the assistance I truly need. Ruthlessly protecting my time through better calendaring and application of my attention so that I am not caught being a “professional email answerer” or rock-hopping around the interwebs instead of moving my big objectives forward.

Structure now. Growth later.

So that’s what’s up til 3/31, investing in the ground beneath my feet. Who says that’s not glittery?

xo

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