Mid-year accountability

If this post proves anything it's that 1) Anyone can start up an incredible lucrative business in their specialised niche (I managed it before even graduating and 2) It's okay to not hit every one of your goals. Priorities change, opportunities crop up that need your all, and you need to trust in big magic. This is how I turned an idea in to a 5-figure profit business in just 5 short months | www.bylucinda.co.uk

cast your memory back 9 months

Remember back in December last year when I set myself accountability goals? Well, what's the point of saying it out loud if you don't follow up with them after? Let me refresh your memory for you.

  1. Release by eBook 'The School for Better Bloggers' by September
  2. Launch my course Shoot in Style {a DSLR + editing masterclass for bloggers and creative small biz owners} by April
  3. Graduate university in July with either the highest possible 2nd class or 1st class degree
  4. Become debt free by August
  5. End the year working for myself as a Creative Entrepreneur

So, here's a secret; it's September. i.e. not the middle of the year. BUT it is nearing the middle of the financial year, so here we go.

2016 has been fucking nuts. 

If you could picture changing your life in almost every imaginable way, I've done it this year. And, honestly? Sometimes it's as important to congratulate yourself on what has been achieved, as it is to be aware of the tasks not completed. I'm going to go through these commitments one by one to assess their status, and as my accountability community, you can kick my ass in the process :)

1. Release the ebook 'The School for Better Bloggers'

Technically, I did manage this, but not how I intended (avec wide-eyes and tail of bush) in December. The School for Better Bloggers became my final major project for my final degree year. It was pretty sweet. It was a fully interactive eBook with slideshows and pop-ups and videos, and was 8,000 words long.

So where is it now? Well, truth be told, by the time the deadline rolled around I was so sick of the sight of it, I couldn't bear to open that dreaded InDesign document again and tweak for actual production. When something becomes a stress, you lose the love for it. I mean, shit, that's what my entire business model is. I help entrepreneurial women fall back in love with their business when they feel like they're drowning in it. And guess what? I was drowning in it. I went through sixteen 500ml / 17oz cans of Red Bull in 4 days. I spent so much time in the library I gained 'my spot' there. I was done with it and it was done with me. It was an amicable split, I got to keep the dog (god I wish I had a dog).

2. Launch my signature dslr course for bloggers by april

Ugh, my intentions were so good. I set up the landing page, I bought the domain, I outlined the course content.. aaaand then I had a degree to finish and a full-time job to work and then, all of a sudden, my own business to run. I'm still itching to do this someday, along with a number of other 'penciled in' course ideas I have. But, truth be told, when I decided to start byLucinda as a business, it snowballed with such gumption I went with it, and it paid off. (You'll hear more about that later)

3. graduate in july with a 2:1 or 1st in my degree

CHECK! Hey, hey, hey, I did this one! On July 12th 2016 I put on a silly cap and gown, shook the hand of an old guy I've never met before and received a First Class Bachelor of Arts Honours Degree in Writing Fashion & Culture.

4. become debt free in august

I actually managed the bulk of this one on New Years Day (praise be to student loans)! I cleared 3 accounts new years day, and a further 2 since then. As of today I have my credit card and my student loan and that's it. Boom.

5. End the year working for myself as a creative entrepreneur

Ah-ha! My favourite part. This little beauty I ticked off April 25th. Before I graduated. Before I even finished my classes. I cannot explain how nice it was to focus on assignments not freaking out about finding a graduate job in the industry. Don't get me wrong, I will always fantasise about working as Digital Editor for a huge fashion magazine in London or NYC, but I wouldn't trade my current situ for that any time soon. I have The Devil Wears Prada on blu-ray to feed that desire. 

For someone who is sensible to an annoying degree, it was a shock to everyone (including myself) when I suddenly announced that I was quitting my job to run my business. It was a particularly crappy day at my day job when it hit me, a true lightbulb moment. I could save my April student loan for emergency rent worth 6 months (lol, bye Felicia) and quit 6 months earlier than initially planned. I legit bolted from the shop floor and ran to find my coach. Conveniently, my coach Els was my manager at work. I spilled my idea out to her before I could talk myself out of it and a week later after an entire afternoon of spreadsheet planning, we had a plan. One month later, I put on my work shirt for the last time. 

and that brings us to today

In the last 252 days I have paid off over 80% of my debts, finished my 3 year degree, graduated with a First Class Honours as a Bachelor of Arts, learned to drive, bought my first car, quit the best job I've ever had and started a business so fantastic I kick myself for not starting it sooner. I also battled anxiety, and have had it creep back in to my life on occasion. I broke down in tears because I woke up one morning and the laundry still wasn't folded, I can't sit still if something's out of place, I cannot think of a single day when I haven't worked at least a little bit and I lost my Grandmother. 

Because I dictate my own schedule, I was able to spend everyday of my Nanny's final month with her. Because I'm earning more than I ever have done before, I've been able to join a super fancy fitness club to take Yoga and Pilates classes every day to help with mindfulness and ease anxiety. Because I work with some of the most inspiring women I've ever known, I don't mind working everyday. I enjoy it. 

This is not a job, it's a blessing. 

I'm setting this pledge here, now, that I will help each and every one of you that wants to start your own business. 

I'm serious. Any questions, concerns, high days, low days, I want to know. You can email me at gettobiz [at] bylucinda.co.uk

and now, on to the financials

I want to be completely transparent with you on everything, and that includes financials. The scariest part of quitting the security of a 'normal job' is the (very rational) fear that you won't make rent or even put food on the table. But I want to show you how it could be. I mean, aside from a bitchin' spreadsheet plan, I only really got in to the right networking circles on social media and before I knew it I was booked out until 2017. Take it from me, whatever it is you want, you can do it.

As you can see, no two months are the same, but that isn't a bad thing. If anything, this feels like a more stable income model than my old monthly paycheque. Not only have I surpassed my old part-time annual salary in 5 months, but I have a constant stream of income throughout the month as opposed to the feast and famine of a monthly pay day.

this could be you in a matter of months, too

What I'm hoping this post gets across to you is that with an intensive, short period of planning, you can quit your job to pursue that dream business, successfully. And I want to show you how. This is the start of something BIG for you.

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it's time to live your best life.