Thursday, February 23, 2012

Why Am I Doing This?


Guest blogger today is Tiffany Colter, a writing career coach. Welcome, Tiffany and thank you for sharing your knowledge with us.


Dreams are funny things.

No, really, they are.

Think about it for a moment. You are standing at a kitchen sink with two kids in diapers and a third on the way. Suddenly you think, “I’m going to travel across the country speaking to business groups and writers. I’ll publish a book for other people. I’ll help other people write their own books. People will value my opinion.”

And then a scream from the high chair rips you back to reality.

But somehow that image in your mind won’t let go.

It builds. You find yourself reading books on business. Instead of relaxing after the babies are in bed you’re pouring over books and websites learning all you can about writing craft, business development, and public speaking.

You buy second hand clothes and second hand cars while your friends are going out to eat at the mall after filling their handled bags with trendy outfits and shoes.

And still, somehow, you feel freer than you did when you worked 9-5.

And after almost a decade of 16 hour days you look around your kitchen table and see four kids growing up. You’re talking about interviewing your new employees and the training you’re doing for your sales team.
And then you turn around and look at the sink. The one you stood at when it all started. The car is still old, but the outfits are new. You earn less than anyone on your staff, but that will change soon.

Somehow through it all you birthed something big. An idea in your mind is now reality. You have a speaking schedule and book tables. People you once idolized now ask your professional opinion. You look on with pride as your clients see their dreams come true. Your name doesn’t appear anywhere on their book [at least not usually], but it was birthed from your heart as well as theirs.

And your kids…well, they aren’t only focused on who they’ll work for or what they want to be. They talk about what they want to create. The company they want to build. The industry they want to influence. The story they want to write.
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Sometimes we wonder why we're doing what it is we're doing.  We may think that we started out because we felt we could do what our boss is doing better.  So we began this new exciting company and we found out that it was nothing more than long hours, no pay, no prestige and hard decisions.

You may be at the place now where you're wondering why you even started this.  You have no income security.  You have no market.  You have no rest.  You have to work constantly just to keep up.  You don't have a life.

That's what I'm going to talk to you about changing.  Being a small business owner is not just about doing the work.  That's the topic of that company.  If you are a designer, having a small business is not just about design work.  It's about marketing your business and expanding it and working with clients and building new markets and doing all the fun creative things outside of simply designing things and that's what we're going to talk about here.

I know you may be thinking well, wait a minute.  There's nothing fun about that.  I started this company because I wanted to design stuff.  I wanted to be my own boss.  Yes, well that's true.  What this will allow you to do is look at the new ways that you can be creative as a business owner.  Don't try to make your business a cookie cutter of other design businesses or other insurance businesses or other dentist offices or anything.  What is going to distinguish you and set you apart?  That's why you're doing this.  You have something different to offer and you want to offer it.
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Tiffany Colter, The Writing Career Coach
Don’t miss a single posting! Subscribe here to receive these postings by e-mail. Tiffany Colter is a writer, speaker and writing career coach who works with beginner to published writers. She can be reached through her website at writingcareercoach.com.


6 comments:

  1. Great post Tiffany!

    I have the honor of working with Tiffany. I am very eager to soak up all she has to offer and learn from her.

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    1. You make me blush, Melissa. =0) You've seen the frazzled lady behind the curtain. Laugh.

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  2. Melisssa,thanks for commenting; and for reading my blog.

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  3. This is a great post and encouragement to many people. Thanks, Jo, for hosting and for Tiffany talking about how you built your dream from just a gleam while standing at the sink! Good stuff!

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    1. Crystal, thanks for your comment. Tiffany is a great encourager to me. Visit my blog again anytime.

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    2. You always make me feel special, Crystal. Thanks. That really poured out of me in about 20 minutes. I started thinking about the "crazy" things we dream. Then I realized that the crazy dreaming set me on a path that has taken me, in some respects, further than I ever would have tried to imagine. In other respects, the "wrong way". I'm simply in shock many days by what I'm a part of and how God keeps teaching me the things I need to do to stumble my way through. Then He also sticks people in front of me and suddenly I see a need pop up that they're perfect for. It is daily VERY intimidating, somewhat stressful and quite humbling to live my life. I don't say that in arrogance. I was near tears today as I talked to God about a particular situation and said, "I want to do it your way. Am I doing it the way you want it done. Help me to do it with excellence and go ahead of me to smooth things out before I get there."

      Thanks for your comment.

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