308: Favorite books of Spring 2020
It's time to share my favorite books of March - June. I read 25 books and so many were so good! FInd the full shownotes at TaraSwiger.com/podcast308.
Today's episode is brought to you by Hank Green and his upcoming book A Brilliantly Foolish Endeavor. Find more at HankGreen.com
The books I loved:
I talked more about this book in this reading vlog
Więcej odcinków z kanału "Explore Your Enthusiasm, with Tara Swiger | Craft | Art | Business"
WHERE AM I? A BIG LIFE UPDATE
8:27Remember when I said the podcast was coming back? That VERY week, I became the mom of three more kids! Tune in to hear how my family expanded so quickly and what's next. Don’t miss the next episode and all my news, sign up here: http://taraswiger.com/list Join the Facebook group for recipes and live convos:https://www.facebook.com/groups/essentialenthusiasm/ Follow me on Instagram: http://instagram.com/taraswiger Find these shownotes (and 300+ more episodes!) here: http://taraswiger.com/4kids
309: Big Changes!
21:16I have a baby! I stopped selling my main product! Listen in to learn why! After publishing an episode every single week for 6 years, the pandemic and life really threw me for a loop and it's been four months since a regular weekly podcast. Well, I have good news - the podcast is back to it's normal weekly schedule! This week we're going to talk about the big changes in my life in my business, why I made the big changes that I did, and what lessons you can learn from my process. Find the full transcript here: http://taraswiger.com/podcast309
308: Favorite books of Spring 2020
19:15It's time to share my favorite books of March - June. I read 25 books and so many were so good! FInd the full shownotes at TaraSwiger.com/podcast308. Today's episode is brought to you by Hank Green and his upcoming book A Brilliantly Foolish Endeavor. Find more at HankGreen.com The books I loved: Home Before Dark by Riley Sager Support indies Buy from Amazon The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires by Grady Hendrix I talked more about this book in this reading vlog Buy it here. From Amazon: The City We Became by NK Jemisin Support indies Buy from Amazon We Ride Upon Sticks by Quan Barry Support indies Buy from Amazon Queenie by Cadace Carty-Williams Support indies Buy from Amazon The HIlarious World of Depression by John Moe Support indies Buy from Amazon Courtroom Thrillers I loved: Miracle Creek by Angie Kim A Good Marriage by Kimberley McCreight
307: Business and Mindset Podcasts by Black Women
11:15As I was thinking about if I wanted to record and what, if anything, I wanted to share, I realized that what YOU come here for is help with your business and encouragement in building it. And the best way I can serve you right now is to tell you other awesome business podcasts to listen to, while I continue my podcast hiatus, specifically podcasts by black women. Because here’s the thing - we all have implicit (meaning unconscious) biases. These biases affect what we listen to, who we pay attention to, who we trust. One of the ways we defeat these biases is to notice them and then work at changing them. And one of the best ways is to pay attention and then purposefully change your feeds. Changing your feeds isn’t the ONLY step, you also need to be educating yourself and interrogating your beliefs! Book Recommendations for educating yourself on how to be anti-racist: So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo Me and White Supremacy by Layla Saad (only $2.99 on Kindle!) How to be an AntiRacist by Ibram X Kendi But changing your feed is an important step because, now more than ever, your reality and your beliefs are SHAPED by your feeds. Google and Facebook show you search results and NEWS based on your feeds and activity. Your world is being created by the voices you actively choose to listen to. Your life is created by your actions, your actions are caused by your thoughts and your thoughts are being shaped by what you see online, especially in spaces YOU and the algorithms have curated. So let’s get your feeds full of brilliant black business women. Side Hustle Pro by Nicaila Mathews Okome Nicaila interviews black women entrepreneurs who have scaled their side hustles into full-time entrepreneurship. Lately she’s been doing a “rewind” episodes where she shares the steps in her own business journey. I think y’all will like episode 199 where she shares how to start a side hustle and her own journey and episode 195, where she talks to a jewelry designer who hustled for 10 years before turning it into a full-time business. Pimp your brilliance with Monique Malcom Lessons on finances, business, creating a plan to turn your creative passion into a business. Monique is real about her struggles and the feel of the show is more casual, like this one. I think you’ll like episode 83: 5 ways to find focus while social distancing and episode 78: 6 systems for your creative business. Support is sexy with Elayne Fluker Elayne does interviews with a variety of women entrepreneurs, including Etsy sellers, authors and psychologists and doctors. There is a great episode from May 1 on dealing with stress during coronavirus, where Elayne speaks with a therapist. I think listeners of this podcast will really want to tune in to episode 725 on how to build a million dollar Etsy business. Journey to Launch with Jamila Soufrant This is a financial focused podcast that has interviews with many entrepreneurs and regular folks who have paid off their debt. I think you’ll like episode 129 on quitting your dayjob to follow your creative passion. Be School withTaylor Elyse Taylor is an embodiment coach and the focus of her show is on mindset and confidence and flow. Be School is a combination of interviews and mini-lessons, similar to the ones I teach here. Her episodes always encourage me. She posts new episodes TWICE a week, so if you’re desperate for new episodes, list in! I think you’ll love episode 304: Imposter Syndrome. Now, these are just the business shows I like, and I don’t even really listen to business podcasts! Lemme know your fave podcasts by black women over on Instagram I’m @TaraSwiger I’m extending my unplanned podcast break into a full summer sabbatical. I will go back to weekly episodes of Explore Your Enthusiasm the first week of August! Until then, you can find new bookish videos on YouTube. Find the shownotes and more episodes at http://taraswiger.com/podcast307
Classic: Seasons of Business
22:45What if you are just not getting things done? What if you just can NOT get things done? Before you start beating yourself up, ask yourself: is this just a season of my life? I recorded this episode over a year ago, when I was a brand-new mom, but it's so appropriate for what we're ALL going through right now - a completely new season in our life and business. Find the shownotes with the full transcript here: http://taraswiger.com/podcast306
HOW TO FIND ENTHUSIASM IN UNCERTAINTY
21:12How do you find joy and enthusiasm for anything when everything is turned upside down? That’s what I’ve been thinking about this past week. As you know if you’ve been listening for a while, my fundamental business belief, what shapes everything I do and how I work with makers and designers, is that your business will thrive and YOU will feel best about it when you follow your enthusiasm. What do I mean by enthusiasm? I like the definition: intense or eager enjoyment or interest. You can follow your enthusiasm IN your business, by working on projects you love, letting go of expectations about what you “should” do, working with the kind of clients that you prefer. You can follow your enthusiasm outside of your business by allowing yourself to work on non-business projects and filling up your enthusiasm well with things that seem completely unrelated (for me lately it’s reading, and making bookish videos, which you can find on YouTube. Other times it’s been quilting or knitting). But with everything uncertain and stressful and all the change...how do we find any enthusiasm? I don’t know about your coronovirus situation, but mine is full of...obligation and responsibility. Basically, we’re all having to do a lot of things we don’t want to do, or that we’re not prepared to do, or that are just hard. On top of that, you have your business - maybe it is doing just fine, maybe it has lost some of it’s sales channels, maybe you’ve lost all your working hours, when you would work on it. So does the idea of enthusiasm and joy really have a place in our current situation? In my experience, yes. Not because things aren’t hard or we’re going to pretend everything is great. But because now, more than ever, you need to take care of your best business resource, and your family’s most important resource - your wellbeing. A key ingredient to your mental and emotional wellbeing is doing things that are just fun. That you get excited about, that brings you joy, or just interests you. But how do you tap into that enthusiasm? Fine all of the suggestions here: http://taraswiger.com/podcast305 We will bounce back.
304: How to plan for business during uncertainty
16:58Welcome to April and the beginning of a new quarter! This is the time where we usually make plans for the coming three months and review the progress we’ve made so far this year but...everything is weird. How do we do that now? In the Starship this week, we’re Map Making - making a plan for the quarter. You can learn more about the Starship here and/or start making your own map with my book, Map Your Business. I know, nothing is normal right now. You are staying home, no one in your home is ever leaving it, you may not be able to get the supplies you usually do, you may not be selling where you usually do, people are buying less because some people are losing their jobs. And yet. Now is the perfect time to plan the new quarter. I’ve actually talked about planning during uncertainty already - back in episode 254, I gave suggestions for how you can plan when YOUR life is uncertain. Add back in episode 291, I shared how I was planning the New Year while my life is so uncertain (as a foster parent). Well, guess what? Now you’re joining me in everything being up in the air and nothing being normal! It’s really uncomfortable isn’t it? One of the things I find myself wanting to do is just wait….wait for it to feel normal. Wait for things to be ok. Wait for everything to be how it was. Well, that’s not going to happen. We may very well need to limit social contact for quite a long while until this is completely past. But beyond that, life WILL be different. Some of the people who lost jobs, won’t get the same ones back. Some businesses won’t open back up. I don’t say any of this to scare you, but so that you can be honest with yourself - things have changed and we don’t when or if what we consider normal is coming back. What we can do is move forward with what we do know What we can do is embrace today for being today. We can accept our current reality and find ways to live within that. And look, I know, it’s scary. Change is really really hard. And never before have we all been going through change at the SAME TIME. It’s so disorienting! Waiting until everything is normal isn’t going to work. Accepting where you are right now is the only way forward. Now it may take days or weeks or even a month to really feel ready to accept it. To even understand what the new reality is. It’s certainly taken me a week or two to get used to having two girls home from school every day and feeling out what our schedules are. But once you’re accepting it and through the fog a bit, it’s time to plan. So how can we plan when we don’t know what’s coming? Look at your goals and dreams again. Get reoriented in where you want to go. Ask yourself which you still care about. Which still matters Forget the old way of getting there and look for new ways. Maybe you were going to do a craft show - what about finally starting that shopify shop? Maybe you were going to grow your email list at a craft show, what about creating a PDF download to drive subscribers? Focus on systems, not outcomes. If you find yourself stressed that people aren’t shopping as much now (although I’m not sure this is true? Surely online shopping is surging) - stop focusing on the outcomes of your goals,and focus instead on setting up the systems of your goals. What technology do you need? How consistent will you be? What do you have to do in order to stay consistent? Be Realistic Yes, work on your goals, make a plan, but also really practice accepting the time and energy you have. I know I have about an hour a day, as long as my girls aren’t in school. I wish I could do more in my business, but that’s the extent of the time and energy I have. So I’m making a plan for the quarter - I’m looking at the systems and products I want to create, knowing I'll be doing it in about 5 hours a week. I will consider it a success if I use those 5 hours well, to create and publish this podcast, hold the weekly Starship chat and go live in my Facebook group. That’s it. Be gentle on yourself. Along with being realistic, give yourself a break. I HAVE more hours than just naptime - I could get up early or work after bedtime...but I need that rest and recovery. I don’t know about you, but I find myself more on edge, more exhausted, more short-tempered than usual. So don’t make your business and your goals another thing to stress yourself out, another thing you should be doing. We are going to get through this. Things may not look the same afterwards...but what if that was a good thing? What if you set a goal for the quarter and reached it despite all the chaos? How awesome and grateful would you feel? One way or the other time will pass, the virus will pass and there will be shopping and craft shows and retail locations making orders again - will your business be ready for it? Find the shownotes here: http://taraswiger.com/podcast304
How to make decisions: Ask yourself this question
7:45How do you decide what to do next? How do you make a decision? My family has a simple question that we ask to make complex decisions and I’m sharing it with you today. I want to talk about how you decide ANYthing in your business (or life) and a quick question I use to make better decisions. I’m not even going to make you wait, here is the question to ask yourself: Hard now or hard later? Over the years of making decisions together, from do we want to get pizza delivered or make dinner, to should we buy a new or used car, to should we rent or buy...my husband and I have realized that making decisions is it’s own skill set. To make decisions together, we need to be on the same page about what matters, what our values are, and where we’re going as a family. And there are a lot of ways to make bad decisions! If you just look at the short-term effect of the decision, if you look at what’s gratifying RIGHT NOW, if you make a decision based on a value that’s not really your own...you end up with a not-great result. Sometimes it doesn’t really matter (should we have ordered that pizza), but sometimes your whole future can turn on a few decisions. But this is not a marriage advice podcast (maybe I’ll start that next?) this is a handmade business podcast! You make decisions every single day in your business, and I know it is so easy to get stuck wondering “what is the right decision? Does this even matter?” Here’s what you can do to cut through all the stuckness and get right to what matters: Hard now or hard later? What this means is: Is there a way to make this decision that may be hard now, but will make life easier later? Or if I choose the easier path now, will it make more difficult later? As an example, let’s look at a decision a lot of us made in our 20s - If I’ve got no money, but I want a pizza or to go out with my friends...should I just get it on a credit card or should I not go out and eat what I have at home? Most of us know that the easier decision is to order a pizza, but we could be paying interest charges on that one pizza for months - it will make the future harder. Or we could make the less fun decision now and have an easier future (with no debt!) A lot of people are raised to (and parts of our culture encourages us to) make the easy decision now and let your future self deal with it. There’s even a stand up comedian who jokes about making life harder for your Future Self. Screw that guy, let him deal with it! So this question - do I want to do the hard thing now or suffer the worse consequences later? Another way to ask the question is: fun now or fun later? Do I want to have short-term fun now, and pay for it later? Or make a hard decision now to make it more fun later? Now, this may not be the question you need. When I was talking about this on a Live in my Facebook group, my friend and life coach Joeli made the point that a lot of people in our community have this misunderstanding that life is “supposed” to be hard. That work is “supposed to be” hard. So they make things hard that don’t have to be hard. I totally know what she means because I see it all the time, this mistrust that things can be easy, work can be filled with ease. So if that’s you, if you think everything has to be hard, let me flip this question around for you. Next time you make a decision ask yourself: What can I do now to set my Future Self up for success? And how can I make it full of ease and fun? I used a financial decision as an example, but this can apply to so many thing in your business: Do I want to take the time to schedule my social media for the next two weeks or do I want to have to deal with it every day? Do I want to figure out my numbers and profitability now, or suffer the consequences of selling items at a price that doesn’t actually make sense? Do I want to take the time to identify my market and shape my marketing message or keep trying to do it on the fly and getting more frustrated and disappointed when marketing doesn’t work? Do I want to confront this problem now (with a supplier, a customer, a friend) or do I want to leave it alone and have a bigger blow-up later? And if you, like me, are still practicing social distancing or quarantine right now, we’re not out of the decision-making loop. Do I want to give my kids another hour of TV and deal with them bouncing off the walls later? Do I want to mindlessly scroll Twitter now and feel unproductive and stressed later? Remember, sometimes you need to choose the easy thing. Sometimes you need the rest, sometimes you need to zone out. But the key to building a sustainable business is to give yourself what you need, while still honoring and taking care of your Future Self.
3 mistakes to avoid in your handmade business
16:12Why do you feel stuck? Why isn’t your business growing? It could be one of these mistakes that are common in creative businesses. I want to help you avoid these mistakes, so let’s dive right in. I’ve been working with product makers - yarn dyers, bag sewers, jewelry makers - and designers and shop owners for the last decade! I’ve been getting up close and personal with them, in my community, the Starship, since 2011. So I have seen a lot of what holds us back in our business, and what to do in order to move forward with confidence and profit. Today I wanna talk about three of the mistakes I see makers and designers make, in their thinking, that holds them back. If you want to avoid the three mistakes most creatives make in running their business, check out my free workshop on the 4 Foundation Method to a Thriving Business, where I explain the mistakes AND teach you how to avoid them (or fix them if you’ve already made them!). You’ll find that at Taraswiger.com/foundaitons. Real quick before we get into it. This is not about shaming you. If you recognize yourself in the mistakes I’m about to share, that’s ok. Realizing you’re making a mistake is the first step to fixing it! So there’s no shame about making mistakes, there’s only learning and changing going forward. Ok? Ok! FInd all three mistakes in the shownotes: http://taraswiger.com/podcast301 This episode covered 3 mistakes you may be making in the way you’re THINKING of your business. The next step is to look at the mistakes you’re making in RUNNING your business. To learn how to avoid (or fix) those mistakes, head over to TaraSwiger.com/foundations and join my free workshop
300: Celebrations! How I got here, how I manage my week, and more of your questions answered
31:58It's the 300th episode of the podcast! OMG! Celebrate with me in this episode as my husband asks me YOUR questions. We discuss the very twisty journey that brought me here in my business, how I plan my weeks, and how I order my coffee. You can SEE us answer these questions right here: http://taraswiger.com/podcast300 Help me celebrate by: Leaving a review on your podcast app! Joining the free Facebook group where I'll be going LIVE this week with a celebration!