Episode 332 Your Leave Behind List to Launch into the New Year With a Bang
8:47AM Dec 23, 2021
And so I want you to think about like, what is the energy that is not serving you anymore? And how are you like blocking what it is that you're trying to create in your life? Are you avoiding looking at things? Because it's too hard? Or you're not being honest with yourself? Is it that you've kept people in your life for too long that just really aren't serving you? I mean, there's so many things that ways that we can look at this. So I want you to get really clear, and sit with this for a while and just think through like, what is it that I'm leaving behind? And keep asking yourself, what do I want to leave behind? What do I want to leave behind? What do I want to leave behind, and you can create a list, write it on a piece of paper, type it on something printed out, and then tear it up. And if you're up for it, you can burn it, just be safe. Do it in a place where you can extinguish that fire if you actually literally do the burn. Because this is going to feel such like a such a huge release. So whatever you can do to release anything that isn't serving you create your leave behind list, and let's move forward into the new year with a bang. Welcome to Thrive by Design, the podcast for ambitious independent jewelry brands, looking to profit from their products, get ready to make more and sell more doing what you love, without spending every single waking minute doing it. Hey, and if you are a creative fashion or product based business, I want to welcome you to the show. I'll be dropping big tips on launching growing and scaling your business. So you can spend more of your precious time using your creativity to make money. You ready? Alright, let's do this.
Welcome to the Thrive by Design podcast. Hey there, it's Tracy Matthews, your host today for the show. And I am excited to be here it is right before Christmas. Today before Christmas Eve as this episode drops. And every year at the end of the year, I like to do a special, a couple of a series of episodes, I guess I should say all about launching into the new year with a bang. So we have some fun things coming up over the next week or two. And we're going to be launching into some fun, kick your new year off with a bang. Things that we're going to do in January with our community and I'm super excited to invite you to participate, more will be revealed but you're going to love it because our amazing Jewelry Brand Makeover Boot Camp is coming back at the end of January - the last week of January. In fact, so I'm very thrilled about that. And I am excited to because before we know it, the Tucson Gem Show is coming up. I think I'm coming back for the first time in a couple of years. So if you're going to be there, make sure that you reach out to me on Instagram over @TracyMatthewsNY or @flourish_thrive. And let's try to connect I'm hoping to host a book launch party, we are still finalizing the details, or some sort of book launch event for the Desired Brand Effect which came out in November. But I didn't do an official in person events, I thought what better place than the Tucson gem show. So if you happen to be there, make sure that you reach out to me on Instagram and I'll for sure send you an invite to that party, it's going to be fun, just a little cocktail hour, we can get together meet each other have some fun, you can get a signed copy of the book or whatever and we can go from there. It'd be super fun. Anyway, today's episode is all about launching into the new year with a bang. But starting by leaving all the stuff that's not serving you behind. I think we could all agree that there have been amazing things about the last couple of years COVID, and the pandemic have allowed us to maybe reevaluate our businesses maybe think differently about how we're moving out into the world. But with that, there's also been some interesting things happening, you know, people react to situations like this so differently. And I'm sure that we can all agree that depending on what circles we run in, the world can feel divided right now in certain respects, right. And it's my, you know, hope and goal that we can kind of come to some middle ground.
Just in general for our own well being. I think it's really hard to carry the burden, and the load when people are feeling still feeling afraid. And hopefully you're kind of launching into feeling a little bit more courageous these days. But there are people out there who still feel really afraid to go out or to travel or to live their lives and I can respect that. I don't I'm happy to not be one of those people. I've been traveling throughout the entire pandemic and seeing people going to events after the lockdown was over the first lockdown, I should say. And I've even traveled internationally a few times. And it feels amazing to be liberated in that in that way to be able to live your life and so I'm talking about this I usually don't talk about this kind of stuff on the podcast, but I'm talking about it for a very particular reason.
When we are dealing with heavy stuff, like a pandemic, like inflation, like, you know, political ideology that you may or may not agree with. I mean, we could both, I think people on any realm could say, you know, that there are things that they agree with that are happening in the country, their country, wherever they live in, and there's things that they disagree with and how things are run. And I think it's hard when I'm here, teaching people how to be free, and how to live their lives on their own terms, when there's so much chaos going out in the world. And that's really my mission here is to help you launch into, you know, your version of what freedom looks like for you and build a business that is fun, that creates financial security for you and your family, that has a profit at the end of the year, that allows you to do this thing that you love so much, that you are literally, you know, waking up every day excited about going to work, which it's pretty amazing, you know, to think about what a blessing and a gift that is, right? But when you're kind of stuck in chaos, or things may be you know, I have a lot of students in our community. Some people had a great year, like, you know, I talked to some students who have been in like, for instance, in our Momentum Program for a while, and maybe during the initial parts of the pandemic, were really struggling. And then, you know, this year, their businesses almost doubled from a couple of years ago, they're really crushing it, and other people who are struggling still. And so it's just really finding that balance of like, how do you get to a place where you're fully aligned, and on purpose with what you're doing in your business and your life. And then all the pieces of that puzzle start to come together, right? And when it's not working in your favor, when you feel a little bit stressed out and distracted, which I can 100% relate to. I always teach the things that I'm going through myself, if I'm honest, these last two years have been very chaotic for me and my business. There's so much has changed in my life. And it has been hard to catch up. And I'm finally getting to a place where I feel grounded again. And what can happen when you get into those places of like feeling uncertain about what's next or feeling you know, scattered or I use the word chaotic a couple times. But chaotic is another good word. Or just like you're lacking some focus. It's hard to really get clear on what you're trying to create. And you know, we just had a Gemini Full Moon on this last Sunday. I'm actually recording this podcast in real time. Actually, it was Saturday, Saturday night, funny story. I was in LA flew out to LA to take my aunt out to lunch for her birthday, which was Sunday. And I flew out there on Saturday because she was only available on Saturday. And I fly Delta so they only fly into LA X. And I had to go to Orange County, California. Well, I didn't want to deal with getting a rental car for just the day because I was literally flying in and flying out. So I thought oh, I'll just grab an Uber. Well, I didn't realize that there was like this crazy Uber situation going on in LA and it was we're canceling left and right. So someone had recommended when we were getting on the the trolley that took us to the lot where you can get a taxi or an Uber that taxis were actually a better way to go. I haven't really dove into like getting a taxi in a long time. So I jumped in a taxi head out to Anaheim Hills where I was meeting my aunt for lunch for her birthday. My brother came to meet us too and he lives in further south in Costa Mesa. So I ended up getting there and I was just going to hang out with her for an hour or so at her house after lunch until I got an Uber back. So I scheduled the Uber and this guy on the trolley said be careful because the Ubers are canceling left and right so I'm waiting I'm like, oh this is perfect timing to give myself some padding or whatever. Well long story short, the Uber didn't show up I could see them literally driving away from the house. And I had to at the last minute call a car service all in I ended up missing my flight back that night had to spend the night at my brother's house all in I think this like quick trip to take my aunt out for her birthday ended up being like $1,200 Because car services in LA are quite expensive. It was quite an interesting experience. But I'm telling you this story not to share with you like how much money I spent on like taking my Alan to lunch that doesn't really matter. It's just I feel like there are a lot of forces out there in the world right now that are causing a lot of extra chaos and it was just it was just a funny experience. And so there was a Gemini Full Moon and I'm a Gemini so my healer Melanie was like you need to do this releasing ceremony on Saturday night. So I had all planned to do it to get home you know I was supposed to land around eight I was going to do this releasing ceremony around nine o'clock or 10 and then go to bed see Jason and the kids all the things and I don't get to do that and I'm staying at my brothers, which was fine, we had a great time got to catch up with some things. And it was just the two of us, which was nice. And I ended up leaving the next morning. And it actually probably worked out better because I got this quality time with my brother. However, at the same time, I didn't get the full effect of getting to do my release list on the Gemini Full Moon. So instead, I did my release list on the plane, and got really clear on what I was trying to what I wanted to let go of that was not serving me from the last few years, I feel like there's been a lot of residue. So the so me popping on today, that's kind of like an extra bonus episode, I wanted to do this in particular, because I know that there is a lot of residual powerful energy, whether it's positive, negative, or neutral, that has been propelling most of us forward over the last years. In fact, I was working with one of our on a consulting call with a client the other day, and she asked me to review her pricing structure, I'm going to do a full episode on this. And she said she's having the best year ever, but she's having the least amount of profit, and she can't figure out why. And that's a thing for another episode. But I think a lot of people are in the same boat. It's like working really hard. You know, maybe their sales are up, or maybe they're down. But they're struggling to kind of figure out like, why is my business not where I want it to be, or what are the things that I can do to actually get things aligned so that I'm reaching the kind of targets and goals and all those things that I would like to create in my life. And so that's what this episode is all about. Now, I've done a ton of planning episodes in the past about planning for the new year. And so I'm going to is going to briefly kind of go over some of the things that I recommend for planning. But I'll go through a few of those things right now, because this is really the core of what we do in our Momentum Program might seem weird, we have a program around here called Momentum. It's our individualized coaching program over here, where we work with students to help them map out their plans and execute those plans so that they're having the best year ever. And if you haven't heard of it, I talked about it on the podcast a lot. So you've probably heard of it. But it's structured around individualized consulting, and coaching, and business audits from my team of coaches and consultants. And so we take a look at your business, and help you kind of identify some of the holes and roadblocks in your marketing and sales strategy and help you overcome those. And we also help you with your operational structure and moving forward so that you can scale with ease. And it's perfectly designed for people who are in that lower six figure range or trying to scale to mid or high six figures or even seven figures and beyond. So if you want to learn more about that easy peasy, you can just head on over to flourishthriveacademy.com/momentum, we are starting another cohort in January, just in case you want to get in on that we have a couple of spots left. But I want to kind of walk you through the structure of how we advise planning at the beginning of the year. I'm gonna go through this this part quickly. And we'll link a couple of other episodes that we've done at the end of the year for planning in the show notes, so you can definitely check that out. But I want to mention this because it's important to do now I know we're right before Christmas. But if you don't get this kind of done, at least for the first quarter, you want to kind of high level map out your first year whole year. And you want to at least in a very least strategically plan out your first quarter. So you're ready to roll in the New Year's, because I want you to take some time off and relax between now and the beginning of the year because I'm sure you've been working your bootay off just like a lot of us. So when you plan your next year, you can do this super simply, you can do it on one page, you can create a document you can look up even Jim Moran's one page business plan, or look at a template for a one page business plan. It doesn't have to be super long, but you do need some core things on there. You need to have your vision mapped out for the year, you need to have your goals mapped out for the year, obviously one of those is going to be a sales goal, or big target for the year. And then you need to map out your key marketing initiatives and any other big things that you plan to move forward in your business. Now, that's a really, really small version of that. And I'm not going to go into depth because I have done a lot of episodes on this in the past and it doesn't really change. But what I really want you to focus on after you do that, and you get clear on like what happens next. And I want to get super clear, we're gonna come into evaluate and talk about evaluation in a minute. But you really need to look at the numbers from last year or this or for 2021 to do this properly. Because what you're trying to do is make an educated decision like are you trying to end flat? Do you care if you hit your numbers next year? And if you do want to have an increase, then what percentage of increase Do you want to create? So it's really helpful to look at what you've done in the previous year, and then plan based on your projected increases. So this is really about creating A sales plan, not necessarily just sales goals, but a sales plan, like how are you going to get there. And that ties in your key marketing initiatives, initiatives that are going to help you with that.
Now, once you have that one page business plan, you're going to want to dive in to 90 days strategic planning, at least for quarter one. So when I help people with this, we have a whole format that we use in our Momentum Program, we talk about the vision for that quarter. So if there's a key initiative that you're really focused on. Now, a lot of times like my key initiative, for the beginning of 2021, is marketing. So the reason why that's the key initiative for Flourish and Thrive Academy is I just restructured my marketing team, we hired a new Director of Marketing Jenny, who's awesome. And we are getting super organized with our marketing. And that is the the basically, my vision is to have our marketing initiatives planned out for the entire year, but then have us like really structured on how we're doing our launches and our intakes into our programs, so that I can remove myself from the organizational chart. And what I mean by that is, you know, as a CEO, or the visionary of the company, my best role is to be at a place where I'm working really strategically. And I'm also launching my first or not launching it, I'm actually hosting, I should say, my first retreat for Creatives Rule the World. If you haven't heard about that, you can reach out to me on Instagram, and I'll tell you more about it for a burnout entrepreneurs who want to get their mojo back. And so in order for me to execute that properly, and do it the right way, I really need to be working more at a high level in all of my businesses. So the goal is to get a little bit more head in our structure, so that Tracy can be technically removed from the org chart and not be tasked out with stuff anymore. So it's going to be interesting to see how it goes, I will definitely report back but I have a really good feeling. Because it's going well so far. So that so you want to create a vision for the first quarter. And then that vision will have a theme. So typically, what I would do is create the initiatives for the quarter first, which I'll explain momentarily, and then do the theme last. But these plans really require a theme. And the theme is usually one word. So marketing will be the word that would really encapsulate like the theme that we're going forward in with the new year.
And then the the key to a successful 90 Day strategic plan is three core initiatives for the quarter. These are your big rocks for the quarter, that things that you're really trying to create. And this is a reference from the EOS Entrepreneurial Operating system model from rocket fuel in the book traction, that are super helpful. So you want to have your three core initiatives. And then you want to map out what needs to happen in project plan for those three core initiatives. So they could be three core initiatives that are happening in tandem all at the same time, or you do one by one a little bit easier to do one by one. And you also want to make sure that you're mapping out sales goals for each month, must have nice to have an a stretch goal for each of those, and map out how you're going to get there. So those typically are incorporated in your three core initiatives of what you're trying to complete. But it could be that just one of the initiatives is a sales initiative sales and marketing initiative like to hit those targets. And then the other one might be the other ones might be bigger projects, like launch a new website or launch a new collection or land. I don't know 12, publicity, placements, whatever it might be. So you can think about it. Or if you're moving to a new studio space, or you want to hire some team, some people on your team. Those could also be core initiatives. So the goal is that you're focusing primarily on three and those are the main drivers that are tied to your big rocks or your core initiatives. And then the rest of it is kind of like a nice to have thing to do. So if you have other stuff that you want to get done. You turn those into bonus projects that are only completed after your core initiatives are reached. So you get you get a chance to have the bonus plans. If you're like an overachiever like me, you can definitely do that. Now, the one page business plan for next year and the 90 day strategic plan for next year. They won't really work unless you evaluate yourself, your business, your strategy, everything that you did in the last year or two, whatever works for you. And here's what you want to be thinking about like what are the things that you did last year that actually worked really well for you and get really specific on what happened? Was it a launch that you had? Was it a collection release? Was it that you did a virtual trunk show that crushed it or several on Instagram or Facebook or whatever it might be, you know, I'm so happy like one of the students that I interviewed for about virtual trunk shows a couple years ago, kept optimizing her virtual trunk shows no joke. This girl, I don't really have her full permission to say her name. But I did interview her on the podcast about this, she did $39,000 On a previous podcast, if you want to be sneaky about it, you can go listen to that one. She reached out to me because she did $39,000 on a virtual trunk show than her next one last holiday season. She did 72. And then she did one at the beginning of this last year and did $192,000 in a two hour virtual trunk show because she planned it out so well. So those are the kinds of things you want to like really evaluate, like, what made that trunk show, so well work so well for her, or for you like, so I want you to be thinking about those things like what is working really well, then I want you to think about what didn't work. Now I mentioned earlier, I worked out the consulting client earlier. And we we dialed in, like the thing that's not working is she started selling wholesale. And some of her wholesalers said, we're like talking to her about the retail price on some of the products. So she started lowering the prices. But what ended up happening was that cut into her profit margins. And so she wasn't able to actually make a proper wholesale markup. And if you're selling, you know, hundreds of 1000s of dollars in jewelry, and you're having to come up with inventory in advance, and you're paying for the materials for that inventory, months before you actually get paid for the final product or sales, that has a huge impact on your cash flow, and your profit margins. And if you're in a place where you can't pay your bills, but your sales are going really well, you need to look at what's happening, like where are you spending money? How your products priced? Are they priced properly? And what can you do to reduce to increase those profit margins. So maybe it's reducing expenses, maybe it's raising your prices. I'm going to do an episode in January about inflation and pricing. And we're going to talk a little bit more in depth on this. Because I think that this is really important thing for us to all be thinking about as as we're kind of moving into a year of inflation. I think if you're really proactive about it doesn't have to be a scary thing. But we need to be thinking about like, what, what are we doing to keep our products selling in the new year, in the light of people maybe having a little bit less discretionary income, or people in a place where they they're making the same amount, but their money goes a little bit less doesn't stretch as far. And that doesn't mean that you change your product line or change to be something to be everything to everyone. That's not what I'm saying. It's just thinking through what you're doing. And that's why evaluation right now can be super important. And then I want you to do a revenue stream evaluation. One of the things that I really learned in my own personal business over the years was that when I didn't really evaluate where the money was coming from, and we just recently did this for Flourish and Thrive, Jason went through and created a very detailed report. And I'm going to be walking through this with my business manager and my bookkeeper and accountant so that I can get super clear on like what's working. And we realized that most of the revenue for this company comes through three key sources, which we kind of knew. But it's interesting to see we do a lot of promotions for different products that we have, and that's helping us evaluate do we continue to promote this? Do we retire this program? Like or do we continue doing it? Because it actually because it's helping students get results? Like that's the most important thing. And then also, at the end of the day, we're in business for profit. So we have a team that we have to employ. And so we're looking at, where are the where are the places that we're making the highest profit margin with the most impact and that we're able to be of service the most. So we're always going to kind of going through those that lens so that we can show up in the best way possible. And then I want you to also think about which expenses can you reduce. So are there like ongoing technology expenses that you're not using? Are you participating in shows that are expensive to participate in, but you're not getting the same return on investment that you used to or a return on investment that actually makes sense that so there's a lot of things to think about here. And everyone is going to have a different experience. And that's the thing that I think is really important. It's like some people crush it at wholesale, other people just can't, can't even get their foot in the door. But they do amazing at in person shows. So you have to evaluate like, what are the things that actually you love doing? And what are the things that you dislike doing? And then where's the money coming? Because that's, you know, you are in business to actually make a profit, I want to remind you of that. And anytime you feel icky about looking at the numbers or you feel icky about sales, you need to start taking a look at that, or if you feel icky about people selling to you, because that's a reflection on how you feel internally about making sales yourself. Like if it bothers you, that people are sharing what they're doing or promoting their products or services, whether it be on a podcast or another place, then or in person or, you know, through advertising or whatever it might be, if you're having an icky feeling around that, like, I want you to check in with yourself, like, what is your story about selling, because that is, could be something that might be, that's a little bit of a sidebar comment, but there could be something that might be getting in the way. And I'm going to be doing a full episode on that in the new year, too. It's about getting to a place where you feel confident with your sales strategy and noticing when internal triggers come up, when triggers come up internal triggers, or just triggers come up, like, why are you triggered by certain things? And what does that say about you and the stories that you're telling yourself? Because I think that's super important and powerful.
So once again, evaluate your business figure out like, where, where's the money coming from? What do you enjoy doing the most? And what are the things that aren't actually working so we can start to cut those out. And then we want to create a leave behind list. So this was developed. I talked about the Gemini Full Moon in the earlier part of this program. Well, the representation and the reason for me sharing that Gemini Full Moon is for a very specific reason. It's a moon, a huge moon that had a meaning of like letting go the past and releasing things. And so I was on a call with my healer, Melanie, my healer, Coach, I call her. And she was like, Tracy, you've gone through so much this year, I think it's time for you to do this release ceremony. And it's perfect because you're a Gemini and this is a Gemini Full Moon. So I want you to think about all the things that aren't serving you anymore. Like how are you showing up? And not doing your best or showing up and being your best? Or what are you settling for that doesn't work for you. So I'd love to encourage you to do the same. Because at different times, you know, I had someone who was coaching me right now she's coaching me with some business stuff, and I'm gonna keep it kind of vague. But she told me that I was settling for mediocrity, because she's been coaching me for a while. And that hit me. Like, literally, like stabbed me through the heart. And I immediately wanted to be like, No, I'm not, but then I realized I actually was and so I'm making a promise to myself, that I will no longer settle for mediocrity. I'm going to settle only for excellence. And so I'm really trying to infuse that into everything that I do and bring in to the new year because it's going to be amazing. Can't wait. Excellence, all of it. Anyway. So your leave behind this can be anything in your personal life, anything in your business, of course. And I want you to think through things like what are your relationships? Like? What are your what's happening in your operation? If you have a team, what's happening, your team or your team structure? What about the money you're making? Are you satisfied with that? Or is that something that you want to improve? Or maybe it's a revenue stream that you want to stop doing? Maybe there are relationships that you need to cut or energy that you've been emoting you know, a really good one is like, we all have those people in our lives, people who are just completely absorbed with media and the news and what's going on, and politics and, and events and stuff like that, and they're so absorbed, and they're angry about it, and it's becoming divisive to them. Right. So we all know, people aren't either side, I personally am in the middle, I think people should do whatever they feel comfortable with, I don't have problems with people making their own personal choices. And I also believe that we live in a free country, and it should stay that way. So I'm pretty clear on that. But at the end of the day, you know, people are getting divided, and they get overly consumed with media and news and it becomes a distraction, and very overly opinionated without understanding someone else's situation or their journey, because everyone is different. I don't think that there's one, any one size fits all, solution to anything. And I would never ever suggest someone do something that does not feel right to them ever. And so I want you to think about like, what is the energy that is not serving you anymore? And how are you like blocking what it is that you're trying to create in your life? Are you avoiding looking at things? Because it's too hard? Or you're not being honest with yourself? Is it that you've kept people in your life for too long, that just really aren't serving you? I mean, there's so many things, ways that we can look at this. So I want you to get really clear and sit with this for a while and just think through like what is it that I'm leaving behind and keep asking yourself, what do I want to leave behind? What do I want to leave behind?
What do I want to believe behind and you can create a list write it on a piece of paper, type it on something and printed out and then tear it up. And if you're up for it, you can burn it just be safe. Do it in a place where you can extinguish that fire if you actually literally do the burn, because this is going to feel such like a such a huge release. So whatever you can do to release anything that isn't serving you create your leave behind list. And let's move forward into the new year with a bang. So next week we're going to be bringing in some new episodes, which I'm very excited about. And before I do, I just wanted to give a shout out to my friend, Cathy Heller, she is the host of the podcast. Don't keep your day job. Cathy is a top podcaster and an entrepreneur and a business coach. And she sits down with successful creative entrepreneurs to learn what it takes to make a living doing what you love. You're going to hear from incredible minds like Matthew McConaughey, entrepreneur Seth Godin, Shark Tank's Barbara Corcoran, and I was also a guest on the show. So it was fun, she brings in everyday people who are quitting their jobs as they build their own business. So if you're tired of building someone else's dreams, and you want to quit your job and get paid doing what you're passionate about, then this is a great show for you, you can listen to my episode over at Cathy heller.com/Tracy. And if you are someone who wants to find your dream path, you can take action on your own terms, she's going to give you access to a free workshop that you can check out. So head on over to Cathyheller.com/Tracy and check it out. If you celebrate I wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. And I'm just thrilled to be here. And if you need a last minute, Christmas gift for the jewelry designer, maker or other product brand in your life, feel free to share or give my book The Desired Brand Effect or buy for yourself as a gift. It's a great addition to your library, getting amazing reviews. And I kind of want to pitch myself because they're all five star reviews, which is pretty awesome. And the book is getting incredible feedback. So I'd love to hear what you think. If you want to check that out, head on over to desired brand effect.com Thanks for listening today have a very Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays and Happy New Year. More to come next week. Thank you so much for listening to today's episode. It's my mission to help 1000s of creative businesses inside and outside the jewelry space. use their creativity to make money. Make sure that you're subscribed to Thrive by Design on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher, and wherever podcasts are played. And we'd love to hear what you think. Please rate and review the show and if you're inspired please share this with your friends. Cheers to seeing you flourish and thrive.