Hey guys, what up?
It’s Lauryn Evarts Bosstick from The Skinny Confidential back on Sivan’s blog & to hang out with you. Today we’re doing a really fun swap, so be sure to check out her post on how to still live your life after you have a baby on my site. She gives SO many good tips- I was like literally taking notes because I need all the help I can get ya know?
Today I’ll be talking about 3 things that will help you make shit happen. Whether you’re trying to take your side hustle full-time or just need to up your blog game, I got you.
Let’s get right into the nitty gritty. Ten years ago, I was a bartender & completely broke, working 3pm-midnight, also taking nineteen units at San Diego State University, while teaching fitness classes (PURE BARRE & PILATES ! ) in the mornings. But I was bored.
Life felt unfulfilling & like something was missing. After much thought & lots of lists, I realized the missing thing was that I wanted to work for myself & tap into my entrepreneurial side. I’ve always been entrepreneurial, but I was still doing what society told me I had to do: go to college, get a job, work 9-5, blah blah blah, & it was boring me to tears.
I decided it was time to create my own strategic future. And today I’m going to give you 3 simple steps that I used for turning my passion into a full-time career. Not only a career, but something that completely fulfills me every single day & provides a community of people with value.
No longer am I beating to the tune of society’s drum, I’m beating to my own & loving it every step of the way. If you’re out there reading this & feeling unfulfilled… you got this.
Alright, pull out your composition notebook & let’s get to work.
THE SKINNY CONFIDENTIAL’S GUIDE TO MAKING SHIT HAPPEN
Step 1 – GET A POSTER BOARD
This poster board strategy is something I constantly talk about because it works. Most people are out there creating vision boards, but I like to call this an execution board. It’s completely different. Vision boards are usually filled with other people’s pictures, other people’s quotes, & other people’s ideas that are meant to inspire you.
An execution board is what you want to design, right there on paper.
Let’s say you’ve got a 9-5 & you want to build a jewellery business online. Go to Rite-Aid, get a big-ass posterboard, different colored pens, sharpies, whatever, & start to build out that site on the poster board. You don’t have to be a great drawer or an artist; just get out whatever is in your head. Not only are you manifesting what you want to build, you’re seeing it right in front of you, visually, every single day.
From here, look around & collect random things that inspire you to execute your vision. It might be textures, fabrics, paint swatches from Home Depot, images you printed out on Pinterest, whatever it is, just start to create the image & brand in front of you. Hang it on your wall so that every day you walk by it & feel compelled to add to it. I used to add fonts I liked, colors, stickers & just over-all vibes I was into. Again, it’s not a vision board, it’s an execution board of what you’re going to go after. So you’re going to go over what you’re selling ( back to the jewellery brand – what kind of pieces are you selling? ), what your tone of voice will be, what your Instagram aesthetic will be, how you want your audience to feel when they leave your platform, then add it to your board. Think of it as your real life Pinterest board but for your actual goals.
Ok now, GOALS. Goals are cute & all, but if you don’t execute, what’s the point? Get another poster board & write down all your goals with systems TO GET YOU THERE. So, if your goal is to launch a website, underneath that goal you need to write what you’re going to do to make that happen. Get really micro with it & be specific. Does it mean that every night at 11pm you are going to work on the site for 20 minutes? Does it mean that 2 days a week you’re having a call with your website designer? Does it mean that you’re going to spend 30 minutes every day creating content so that you have something to put on the website? No matter how small, write down the goal & small steps you need to take to get you there.
Sidenote: Let’s talk more about launching with a niche. I think people starting out need to niche down. When it comes to starting a business, think of it as an upside-down triangle; aka, THINK BIG, start small. Simple really. You’ll know when it’s time to expand outward because it should happen very naturally & organically. For me, the tiny tip of the triangle was blogging, & it’s slowly growing out into a brand.
Step 2 – CREATE A STRATEGIC FUTURE BY DESIGN
Creating a strategic future by design is something I get asked about a lot. It’s a big part of the way I run my life & my business. Creating your own future is magical, which is why I want to share it with YOU.
Ok so the concept sounds super simple, but it actually requires absolute CLARITY. Clarity is tricky. I mean it’s difficult to figure out exactly what you want & how to actually get there- you know? What works best for me is the above; like actually writing it down & seeing it visually.
Let’s get down to business: USE THE WORKSHEET BELOW TO YOUR ADVANTAGE. Literally use it to create & design your future. Work backwards by starting at WHERE DO I WANT TO BE? Your goals can be anything- friendships, relationships, business ideas, big picture ideas, a book you want to write- whatever. Just write it down. And most importantly: answer the HOW?
ALRIGHT- to print it out: simply save it to your desktop ( by right clicking ) & press PRINT. If you want to go balls to the walls, take it to Kinkos or Staples & have them print it out for you on fancy thick paper & in color. FUN. To be honest, that’s what I did! Really, it’s true! I use my own worksheet. & now it’s hanging on my bathroom mirror.
Why? Well…on one of Tim Ferriss’ podcasts he had on professional poker player, Phil Hellmuth. Phil said something that’s been invaluable when it comes to goals, is hanging a piece of paper with his goals on his bathroom mirror. On the sheet is also things he’s grateful for. That way before he goes to work, he sees his goals, overall vision, & a list of things he’s grateful for. I LOVED the idea so much which is why I did my own worksheet & hung that shit UP!
When my husband, Michael & I attended Tony Robbins we REALLY went over the concept of creating a compelling future by design. Tony says:
♡ Find the right strategy.
To make a lasting change, you have to start with a proven strategy. Planning to eat 500 calories a day to lose weight or trying to get rich off one hot stock tip will not be sustainable over the long-term.
How do you find a strategy that works? “I’ve always believed the best way to get a result, the fastest way is to find someone who has already accomplished what you’re after, & model his or her behavior.”
♡ Understand the power of your story.
Even if you have the right strategy, you won’t get anywhere if you don’t follow through. It’s the stories we tell ourselves that make or break our best-laid plans. If you’re not taking action, he advises you consider the story you’re telling yourself.
Someone trying to save more might limit themselves by thinking deep down: “I don’t make enough,” “I can’t save more,” or “That’s only for rich people.” Is your story holding you back or empowering you? Tony always says 80% of success in life is psychology & 20% is mechanics.
( So guys! If you put this worksheet into action make sure you’re paying attention to your narrative after it’s on paper- what you tell yourself everyday has a LARGE part to do with success in all areas ).
♡ Change your state of mind.
Tony says: “your mental and emotional state colors your perception and experience of everything in life. If you feel afraid or insecure, it’s hard to make a big change, but if you feel like a million bucks, you’re ready to conquer the world.”
After the worksheet is done, make sure to pay attention to your thoughts. That’s why I like my worksheet on my mirror- it sets the tone of my day & the tone of my thoughts each & every day. Really though, it very much helps with my inner narrative. Stalk my other free printables here & here.
Step 3 – EXECUTE
This is the most important part of the recipe for success. So many people create vision boards, so many people create strategic futures, but not many people end up executing. You need to put execution into place immediately. This means really attacking those goals & putting things into action. As I said above, goals are cute & all, but what are the ACTUAL, tangible things that will help you achieve them?
Some things that have helped me reach my goals are time batching, a time cube, & my color-coded Google calendar. To break each one down for you:
♡ Time Batching
Back in the day, when I first started blogging, I was a slave to time. I used to wake up, try to fit it all in one day, without really having an efficient plan. My calendar wasn’t filled because I figured it was fine to go with the flow as long as I got it done right?
ENTER: time batching
This is a very easy time-management hack that will enable you to take full advantage of your CONCENTRATION by doing a lot of the same things together at the same time. Make sense?
BENEFITS OF TIME BATCHING:
+ VERY MUCH REDUCES START/CLEAN-UP TIME +
Honestly the time it takes to set up, breakdown, rinse & repeat is obnoxious really. I mean, if I’m doing a coffee meeting Tuesday & then a dinner meeting Wednesday…NO!! I don’t want to get dressed up for two events, so I’ll batch the meetings into one day.
By going from one thing to another, you actually lose energy. You want to completely minimize start/stop times. Getting ready takes A LOT OF TIME. So does setting up for a shoot, or sitting down to return 1023484 e-mails. I find it more efficient to batch.
+ GETS RID OF THE UNNECESSARY CLUTTER +
Instead of checking your email 20 times a day, check it once. Even with text messages I do this- I don’t respond right away. A lot of people get mad at me for this but if I got caught up in my inbox & text messages I would be screwed.
+ HELPS WITH FOCUS…LIKE A LOT +
It’s so much easier to focus on one thing at a time. I’m all about a good multitasking moment but here’s the difference: when I get a facial, I batch emails for one hour. When I get a blowout, I write. When I get my nails done, I do DM’s. So essentially, I still batch while multitasking. Does that make sense?
I batch a lot of random things too. Such as:
DM’s & Snapchat messages- I used to do them throughout the day which just wasn’t working for me. Now I sit down for 30 minutes in the morning & an hour at night, every night & reply to my messages. It’s most certainly a priority for me to respond to my amazing community so I make it a point to batch this specific thing.
E-mails are batched too- if I sit down to return emails, I GO CRAZY!!! MY TEAM SOMETIMES HATES THIS- because they will wake up to 23490 e-mails. Recently we added in Slack & Trello so emails have lessened. But remember: when you add on things like Slack & Trello, you need to batch time to respond to these messages too.
Blog posts are one thing that are hard to batch- I write on the go. Just how I’ve always been- I don’t like writing a bunch in advance. I find it boring. I’m very sporadic & fly by the seat of my pants when I write. I prefer to write in REAL TIME. BUT if I’m going on vacation, I will batch blog posts on the plane. You know, the plane is OPTIMAL for batching. No distractions, you can have a glass of champagne, & lightly ( hopefully? ) salted peanuts while you work uninterrupted. It’s kind of my version of heaven.
Playtime is always batched- if I am going to the movies with a friend, I like to grab dinner with another friend before. I feel like it’s the best way for me to plan. That way I can be the most efficient with my time. Any other way doesn’t work out well for me.
When you batch you create more space for yourself which I’m guessing is a priority for most people? Remember this quote: “Every time we become distracted, it takes an average of 15 minutes to regain complete focus, and that adds up over time.”
♡ Time Cube
To help you with your time batching you absolutely need a time cube. This little sucker keeps my life together.
Going off this I start with my most important tasks first, ALWAYS. I wake up & immediately make a list of SEVEN, only SEVEN priorities for the day, every day. I’ve been going with lucky number 7 for the last year & it’s really works. The number 7 came from Richard Branson who said he sets 7 goals to complete for the day, every day. This provides motivation to follow through with the commitments listed. This is also called The Ivy Lee Method. Scope more on time-batching/blocking here.
♡ Color-coded Google Calendar
First off, my team is super cognitive about color coding & we use certain colors for certain things: all my beauty appointments are in light pink, all my blog post due dates are in red, all my workouts are in yellow… This is such a great tip. It makes your calendar not so overwhelming.
I live AND breathe my calendar. It holds you accountable, keeps you on time, & lets you use your time more efficiently. Even including driving time in your calendar & knowing how long it’ll take you to get somewhere makes you feel in control of your day. For a while I wasn’t like this & it was really hard. I was late for everything, always. Now everything is color coded in custom TSC colors so it always looks super cute & I’m just so in tune with my schedule. Check out more of my calendar tips here.
At the end of the day execution is everything. If you aren’t going to execute, don’t even bother. If you were baking a cake, the execution would be the flour AND the sugar. While I was bartending & building The Skinny Confidential ( & not making any money for 3 years ), I was executing every single day, 7 days a week at the same time. It became a habit & those tiny habits I did every single day really fed the big picture. Obviously I still have a long way to go for where I want to be, but small, tiny, habits are such a huge part of success.
And in my opinion, how you do those habits is through daily execution.
Anyways I hope these tips & tricks help anyone out here looking to make some moves. If you’re reading this post, I know you’re a hustler, because just look at Sivan.
As some of you may already know, I’m pregnant so I need all the tips I can get from Sivan. Very stoked that she’s back on The Skinny Confidential today sharing tips on being a working mom. You know I’m taking notes like no tomorrow. Hell, I might even put a poster board up by my bed- I need a strategic future planned for this whole baby thing, know what I mean?
Be sure to follow me on Instagram @theskinnyconfidential & check out Sivan’s first post on TSC where she talks beauty tips.
Thank you so much for having me again!