When I set my intention of Trust in January, I knew I wanted to have more faith in myself, my decisions and in the universe's hand in matters. I've asked questions and contacted people that I previously didn't have the courage to, I've made hard business decisions that feel scary but I still believe are the right ones, and I've continued to follow my instincts. I've projected that feeling of trust outwards to the people I'm involving with Silly Heart (being open about money, timings, limitations), and been grateful and told myself I'm worthy of the trust my first clients and collaborators are putting in me.
I think I've found it so hard to choose an intention for February because it feels like I'm not done with January's! I have been reluctant of choosing a word for the year as I think so many things can change over that time, but I'm going to keep holding the word Trust front of mind for as long as it continues to push me forward.
As for this new month, when we can wake up to snow on the ground, and a chill in the air, but warm sunshine on our skin, it's time to start moving out of a slow, waking-hibernation and prepare for Spring.
For February my intention is to Speak Up. I will be focussing on my confidence and specifically the language I use and where I speak about Silly Heart.
I intend to speak confidently about myself and my business. No more unnecessary apologies, or language softeners (i.e. "I'm just doing this", "Sorry to bother you, but", "I hope that makes sense?", "I'm still learning", etc). The feedback I've been getting from my first clients has been so resoundingly positive and I am feeling more and more sure about what I've been working towards.
I'm good at this! That's what I need to be projecting, and I need to project it beyond the small space I've been taking up.
I intend to speak up in the right places, to the right people. I've spent the last few years exclusively using Instagram for marketing my print business, and it's been great. I had many wedding clients and workshoppers find me that way, and through word of mouth among my followers, plus I loved sharing there. I still love sharing there.
It's been a faintly horrifying realisation that moving from a product-based business to a service-based business means that a visual social network probably shouldn't be my main platform anymore. If I want to talk to women considering leaving their day jobs, then I need to be on LinkedIn (as an ex-recruiter, this is quite painful for me, but I accept it is a very powerful platform!).
If I want to talk to small businesses and mothers, then Facebook is a good place to be sharing my plans. And, excitingly, Facebook appears to have found a new use for freelancers and small businesses, connecting like-minded creatives within the groups and communities being set up there. I've joined a few different small business support groups (my favourite is Indie Roller) and they are full of inspiration, advice and, most importantly, real human beings!
I intend to speak up outside of my comfort zone. I have been so distracted by the noise that comes with constantly checking social media, that I have forgotten there's a whole world of potential publicity out there.
Podcasts, relevant blogs, events, newspapers and magazines. There are huge audiences out there that I'm nowhere near to reaching because I have been thinking small and working with what is immediately available to me. I'd love to pitch some articles to print publications, so I've been writing a lot in any spare moment I have.
I am of course planning my own events this year - networking for introverts, talks, workshops for small business owners - all of which I'm hugely excited about, but what about other people's events? Could I speak there? Or collaborate on something? The opportunities are out there, I just have to grab them.
I intend to speak up more often. I'm still not telling people enough about what I'm doing. I'm working with several clients, with new enquiries coming in regularly - that's something to shout about! I have a couple of events pretty much locked down now, with almost every detail worked out, but I keep putting off announcing the who's, where's, and what's of them all. I tell myself I have good reasons for that, but actually it comes down to fear, pure and simple. It's scary. Telling people makes it real. So this month I'm gonna make it real.
What are you focussing on this February? An intention, a new project, a list, a break? As always, I'd love for you to join the conversation over on Instagram using #sillyheartintentions, or (now) on Facebook! Ta-da!