Distractions is definitely the theme of July. There were WAY too many meetings and events throughout this month. It felt very unproductive at times. Work felt especially imbalanced between meeting time and working time.
Good Things Happening with Work
- A new client came onboard through a client referral. From our initial consult, I could tell she was a little scattered about her priorities list because there were several small issues that were getting in the way of her making progress. So we started out with a simple 2 hour strategy session. During that time, we got to know each other, discussed her business goals, and tackled some small technology issues. It was totally worth her time and mine. Seeing the sense of relief on her face as we wrapped up was so gratifying.
- Two of my highly irregular clients agreed to become retainer clients.
- I finally finished updating the details of the updated Partner Program for my business. The aim is that this will allow me to continue growing and generate enough revenue for me to bring on another marketing person (like me) to take on some client work.
- My business is officially a Zoho Authorized Partner, which gives me the credibility to get more marketing operations clients tied to the software platform. Now I’m setting up Zoho workflows for several clients.
- The company is a slow-growth business, which is actually a good thing. However, I’m hungry for challenges and work – so the problem is really my scalability matched up with a pinch of impatience.
- I do not yet have the legal agreement for the Partner Program reviewed by an attorney because I’m not sure who to turn to. It’s an expensive endeavor and I don’t have a ton of money right now.
- Early in the month I had some difficult exchanges with a client about how invoicing is handled and the discount amount she receives. It all worked out in the end, but I’m terribly embarrassed by the breakdown in communications.
It has been about a year since the last time my husband had a steady job or series of individual client gigs. We’ve talked about it several times throughout the past year. I’ve pitched his services to colleagues and friends. But at the end of the day, 95% of our income right now is coming from me and my small (slow-growth) business. I’ve been feeling the pressure.
On top of struggling with income, it feels like I’m bleeding money into unexpected costs. My car troubles over the past two months have cost me near $1,000 between a broken headlight and new tires. Next up is taking care of the alignment and dealing with the check engine light that went on a couple days ago.
Family and Friends
July is the month of my brother’s birthday. I think of the two of us as being pretty close. Even though we only talk about once a week, he is my big brother and we’ve always been able to talk with each other – no matter what ridiculous family issue is going on.
During the days leading up to his birthday, my brother’s brother-in-law and his wife had a baby. Everyone knew that the baby was going to be born quite ill and may not survive birth. The day before my brother’s birthday the baby passed on. None the less, I called my brother on his birthday. I thought he would at least pick up the phone. It was radio silence for several days. No response to calls or text messages from any family member.
I recognize that my brother was supporting his extended family through a terrible time. It was tough to feel that distance between us. I think he felt a deep sense of shock and loss for the family. He told me that the baby looked just like his own little girl. That would freak me out too.
SINGING IN PUBLIC: The week after my brother’s birthday was my first performance with the chorus that I joined. It was a good experience – singing to some warm and grateful senior citizens. This was my first time in front of an audience in … I don’t know… maybe 10 years. It was just awkward to stand up there and not sing some of the songs (because I haven’t qualified on them yet). Probably a logistic that should be planned out better in the future.
GROWING UP: Later in the month, my husband and I attended a wedding in Houston for his childhood friend. That is always an interesting experience as you grow up – seeing how we have all changed and, in some cases, out grown each other. He felt the distance and it made it sad, but now he’s come out the other side. I remember going through that too. Sometimes the people you grew up with are so different from you that you cannot even recognize how you were ever friends in the first place.
Reflections on the World and Creating Community
Big things are happening in our world, and I’ve been learning so much about it over the past few months. The high levels of corruption, manipulation and control are quite scary in some ways.
I never quite understood the whole sheeple concept until this year. Now I’m clearly seeing how most of us, myself included, have just followed along with what we are told without questioning why or how it got to be this way. On the other hand, I do believe (and see) that there are more good people than bad. We can take back our world and our lives by coming together as a community.
Divide we fall, but United we stand.