Alt Summit 2014: Finding My Focus

Alt Summit 2014: Finding My Focus // Budget Fairy Tale{This Tattly tattoo I found at the Mail Chimp party on Friday night was perfect for me.}

 

When I attended Alt Summit one year ago, I had one focus – to promote Blogging It Forward. At the time I was running four blogs, working full time, and wasn’t quite sure what my future looked like. While I loved writing and knew I wanted to turn it into a career, the vision was just not there yet. All I knew is that I had just invested a lot of time and money into this website and my main goal was to promote the heck out of it. My other three blogs and any other business ventures were an after thought.

Finding My Focus

One year later, my situation has changed. I’m now unemployed self employed, putting a lot of time and energy into Inspired By Dis, and trying to brand myself as a Disney blogger. I mentioned in my initial recap that I was lucky enough to spend a few minutes talking to Rachel from Handmade Charlotte. We got to talking about my Disney blog … then I told her I have my lifestyle blog, and I have a weddings blog, and I also have a blog for bloggers. Oh, and I also do Virtual Assistant work and I’m a vacation planner. And don’t forget about my Etsy shop. When she asked me what my end goal was, I responded that I wanted to write about Disney, or write for Disney. But the bottom line was, Disney. So then she asked me why I wasn’t focusing all my time and energy into that one goal.

Hmmm, good question.

It’s not a secret that I’m juggling too much. Having four blogs and a VA business and an Etsy shop isn’t insane, but trying to manage them all and make them perform well is the definition of insane. When Rachel and I were talking about my traffic, she said something along the lines of, “It’s no wonder your numbers are low, they are all spread out over four blogs! Imagine what your numbers would be like if you focused all that energy into just one blog.” She’s totally right. I already knew that, but thought maybe if I tried hard enough, I could make all of them super successful. But the truth is, by myself, I just can’t.

Alt Summit 2014: Finding My Focus{Me, listening to Rachel school me on everything I’m doing wrong with my blogs. Photo by Brooke Dennis.}

 

As the conference went on, I would meet people, talk about my blogs, and get the same response:
“Girl, WHAT are you doing?!?”
“You certainly have a lot going on, don’t you?”
“How do you keep up with four blogs?” (Answer: I don’t.)
“What is your focus?”

 

What is my focus?
What is my focus?
What is my focus?

 

The truth is, in the wake of Alt Summit and hearing all the things I need to hear, for the first time since being laid off I’m feeling stressed and overwhelmed. Because I am realizing I have to break out of my comfort zone, put on my big girl pants, and make some tough decisions. Cutting back is something I know I need to do, deep down, but in reality it’s very difficult. At this point I have worked so hard to create each of my blogs, I’ve put time and energy and money into them and it’s not easy to just let that go. They are my tiny pixel babies, spawned from my imagination and carpal tunnel.

Alt Summit 2014: Finding My Focus{Amazing custom calligraphy from Melissa Esplin at I Still Love Calligraphy.}

 

And at this point, I’m still not sure what I’m going to do. ┬áDuring Brit Morin‘s presentation on Investing in Your Blog, I stood up and asked how you mentally prepare yourself to let go of a project you’ve invested so much into. The answer was something along the lines of, set benchmarks and if you don’t reach them, move on. Sounds easy enough, doesn’t it? ┬áSo I’m setting some mental benchmarks. And if I don’t reach them, I have to be strong and move on.

It is not enough to wish on stars ... you have to reach for them{I made this!}

Have you ever had to make a tough business decision? What did you do? How did you convince yourself it was the best decision?