Diary of a Creative Entrepreneur

Learning to Push Past Your Doubts { Diary of a Creative Entrepreneur, Volume 4 }

I have struggled with learning to push past doubts since I was very young. As a “rule follower” and  “people pleaser” I hate the thought of making people feel uncomfortable, which I’ve mercilessly avoided, often at my own expense. The business world swallows up people like me, which is why I’ve been working hard to undo years of self-doubting behavior. This week, I tapped into three valuable resources that have greatly accelerated my quest for self confidence. If you’re someone who is always second guessing yourself, placing limits on your potential, or procrastinating out of fear, I know you will greatly benefit from this post.

Do you ever wonder what your fellow creative entrepreneurs are up to? In between the big wins, product launches, and collaborations are the small steps (some forward, some backward) that lead to those turning points. Here’s a transparent account of a week in the life of a gal in passionate pursuit of business growth, personal development and those magical milestones.

Learning to Push Past Your Doubts // Do you ever wonder what your fellow creative entrepreneurs are up to? In between the big wins, product launches, and collaborations are the small steps (some forward, some backward) that lead to those turning points. Here's a transparent account of a week in the life of a gal in passionate pursuit of business growth, personal development and those magical milestones. // From MichelleHickey.Design

Monday, January 30th

I kicked off my day with an incredible audiobook called “Eat That Frog,” by Brian Tracy. Coming off of the heels of finishing “The Power of Self-Confidence,” written by the same author, I was excited to take in, even more wisdom on the topic of productivity.

And take it I did. This book focuses on identifying the stresses that make us procrastinate, and provides practical ways of overcoming them. The message resonated with me so much, that I immediately restarted the audiobook and listened to it for a second time when it had completed.

I wasted no time putting these methodologies into practice. The first part of the day was spent creating proposals for upcoming sponsored posts. In the past, I’ve shied away from these because they are most often returned with rejection (or with no response at all). Not only did I send out five new proposals, but sent an additional idea to a company who had declined my first attempt.

Next, I implemented the book’s methodology of prioritization by labeling the items on my to-do list with A, B, C, etc. This led me to attack a task that I had been putting off for months, which was to update one of my most popular Pinterest posts.

I optimized the blog post it linked to, by updating the copy and adding an email opt-in/sign-up box. You can imagine how much I was kicking myself when I received over 50 new email subscribers from that post alone, in ONE day, after making that change (a stat that continued throughout the week).

Learning to Push Past Your Doubts // Do you ever wonder what your fellow creative entrepreneurs are up to? In between the big wins, product launches, and collaborations are the small steps (some forward, some backward) that lead to those turning points. Here's a transparent account of a week in the life of a gal in passionate pursuit of business growth, personal development and those magical milestones. // From MichelleHickey.Design

Tuesday, January 31st

Still feeling the effects of my newfound confidence, I “ate another frog” by completing two emails that new subscribers (from the post I referenced in Monday’s entry) would receive automatically after signing up.

I also had a Skype chat with my sister and assistant, Allie to discuss a few ways to optimize our Etsy shop for Valentine’s Day. We decided to add “valentine’s day” related tags to relevant products, to highlight them in our top section, and to include an ordering cut-off notice for shippable items.

I ended Tuesday on a high note by booking my flights for a trip out to California in March, to attend The Social Media Marketing World Conference! If you’re planning to attend, please let me know so that we can meet up!

Learning to Push Past Your Doubts // Do you ever wonder what your fellow creative entrepreneurs are up to? In between the big wins, product launches, and collaborations are the small steps (some forward, some backward) that lead to those turning points. Here's a transparent account of a week in the life of a gal in passionate pursuit of business growth, personal development and those magical milestones. // From MichelleHickey.Design

Wednesday, February 1st

The first of the month means accounting day! I signed into my Quickbooks account to log business profits and expenses, issued invoices and paid outstanding bills. Balancing the books gave me the idea for an upcoming blog post which examines my expenses, and how they benefit my bottom line. Stay tuned for that!

The next audiobook I dove into is called, “The Obstacle is the Way, ” by Ryan Holiday. It was hearing the stories of people throughout history who defied odds and pushed past their weaknesses to attain success, which propelled me into the latter half of the week.

It was just the message I needed to hear as I dove into completing those last two emails in my subscriber sequence. The voice inside that typically says things like “why would anyone want to buy this?” or “you’re going to get so many unsubcribers,” were replaced with a clear mind that breezed through that writing with confidence and conviction.

Learning to Push Past Your Doubts // Do you ever wonder what your fellow creative entrepreneurs are up to? In between the big wins, product launches, and collaborations are the small steps (some forward, some backward) that lead to those turning points. Here's a transparent account of a week in the life of a gal in passionate pursuit of business growth, personal development and those magical milestones. // From MichelleHickey.Design

Thursday, February 2nd

After all those bold moves, it was time to work on something a little lighter (but that would still make an impact). I composed a new blog post, highlighting my latest favorite script and calligraphic fonts.

If you didn’t receive a notice that this post went live, it’s because the site is undergoing a bit of a caching issue where it’s not displaying newly published posts (boo). Instead of letting this bring me down, I saw this glitch as an opportunity to overcome a challenge (albeit, a small one in the scheme of things)!

Thursday was also special because it was Mastermind Day! I hopped on a Skype call with my partners, Lauren and Kalyn, to catch up on the past few weeks, and to plan our upcoming in-person meeting, at our home. Needless to say, I am counting down the days!

Learning to Push Past Your Doubts // Do you ever wonder what your fellow creative entrepreneurs are up to? In between the big wins, product launches, and collaborations are the small steps (some forward, some backward) that lead to those turning points. Here's a transparent account of a week in the life of a gal in passionate pursuit of business growth, personal development and those magical milestones. // From MichelleHickey.Design

Friday, February 3rd

Even though I didn’t even open my laptop, the last day of the week was fruitful as ever. I hopped in my car to drive a couple of hours to meet my college roomie (a fellow graphic designer!) at The Orlando Museum of Art. We spent the day marveling at the artwork of past and present, inspired every step of the way. We wrapped up the afternoon with some yummy lunch and lots of tea!

I didn’t let those four hours in the car (two each way), go to waste. I queued up yet another audio book and treated myself to “The Magnolia Story,” by Joanna and Chip Gaines. Their tale was not about a lucky break that springboarded into success, but an entrepreneurial journey, with setbacks and failures.

Listening to their inspirational story in those familiar voices was all I needed to seal confirmation of the message I had been hearing all week.

Lesson of the week:

Overcoming self-doubt and gaining confidence is not something that happens overnight. Just like physical exercise, you must practice at it daily and with intention, to see results. Challenge yourself to do something bold every day and know that with every failed attempt, you are bringing yourself closer to achieving your goals.

What I’m reading:

I took full advantage of my Audible account this week, by listening to the wisdom in:
Eat That Frog, by Brian Tracy
The Obstacle is the Way, by Ryan Holiday
The Magnolia Story, by Joanna and Chip Gaines

What I’m watching:

Timeless

What I’m listening to:

I was plugged into my audiobooks all week, so I didn’t listen to much of anything else!

This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase through these links, you’ll help support MichelleHickey.Design, and you’ll receive some amazing stuff, too. Whohoo!

This article has 10 comments

  1. Tee @ Beauteeful Living

    Really appreciate you letting us in what you’re doing and feeling. Sounds like you’re off to a motivating start to 2017. Here’s to continued success, Michelle. You’re so talented and are an inspiration!

    • Michelle

      Thanks so much, sweet Tee! I’m so glad we connected a couple years ago, and so admire your beautiful work. Glad you’re enjoying this new segment!

  2. michelle

    I feel the same way! I’ve been thinking about opening my own bookkeeping/accounting business for the past 9 months. I talked myself out of it once already and started to do the same again today. I may have to listen to the books you mentioned in this post. Had I not let my low self esteem and confidence get in the way I would probably have clients by now…. Thanks so much for the recommendations!

    • Michelle

      Isn’t it crazy how we let doubt get in the way of progress? The good thing is, you have an awareness, which is half the battle. I hope that this post encouraged you to move forward in creating your accounting business, and that in 9 months from now, you’ll have tons of clients! Thanks for stopping by, Michelle! 🙂

  3. Alina

    Love this week’s diary post, Michelle. So inspiring. I’m at the stage where I’m procrastinating a lot and moving ever so slowly at developing my photography business (love graphics a lot too!). Self doubt keep creeping in. Thanks also for all the references to read-up. I have read your previous reference which was the book, The One Thing, and it helped. Thank you. What you’re doing is really great.

    • Michelle

      I’m so happy to hear that, Alina! That self doubt is such a nuisance, isn’t it? Keep pushing forward, girl! Glad you’re a fellow fan of The One Thing hope you’ll enjoy the others I mentioned. 🙂 PS, leave a link to your site— I’d love to take a peek at your photography!

  4. Kim Mayo

    Very inspiring post! I have also let my lack of confidence keep me from pursuing cool things, but I’m ready to make some changes. Thanks so much for providing a spark.

    • Michelle

      So glad it sparked something in you, Kim! I know that if you push past your fears that there will be something awesome on the other side. 🙂 You can do it!

  5. Emily Counts

    I love this post and your new series! I’ve read Eat That Frog already, but am adding the other to my list! Thanks for sharing!

    • Michelle

      Thanks so much, Emily! It means a lot coming from someone who is so organized, and a productivity guru. 🙂 I know you will enjoy the others just as much!

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