Handmade business OVERWHELM!
Owning your own business

Handmade business OVERWHELM

Handmade business OVERWHELM!  A topic that few people discuss, mainly because everyone seems to want to lead you to believe that running a handmade business is EASY – and they focus on the glamour of owning and running your own business.

Well, I’m different – I’m brutally honest.  Owning a handmade business isn’t for the faint-hearted and it can leave you feeling totally OVERWHELMED!

As a business owner, you wear many hats, you are:

  • a receptionist
  • customer service rep
  • the maker
  • the marketer
  • the social media manager
  • website designer
  • bookkeeper
  • tech person
  • salesperson
  • and the list goes on and on

This can be totally OVERWHELMING.  So many things to do and only so many hours in a day – we all face it.  And most of us are reactive – meaning that we run around putting out the fires that are the most pressing instead of being proactive and prioritizing the tasks that are involved.

Let me give you a couple of examples of being reactive so you get what I’m talking about.

  • You work from home and have small children.  You finally get a half hour or an hour of what you think is going to be uninterrupted time to do a specific task – let’s say finish that handmade object you’ve been working on.  Johnny (your 2 year old) suddenly wakes up from his nap screaming.  You drop everything and run to see what’s wrong.  That’s reactive.
  • This example is straight from my own life this week (don’t worry I won’t give you all the gory details).  I have a full-time job, so the only time I have time for my handmade items and this website is early in the morning (5 to about 7:30 a.m.) and after work when I’m already exhausted.  So, here I am this week focusing on the final prep for the release of free webinar I’ll be hosting on June 30 (more on that next week) and all of a sudden I realize I haven’t written a blog post for this week, I have a Mother’s Day open house next week and I have a stack of dishcloths that need to be blocked, no inventory or price list, and no price tags for the finished items that I’ll be selling!  So,now it’s a mad hustle and a complete change of plans and priorities to get these things done.  That’s reactive.

I hosted a live chat yesterday about this very topic of handmade business OVERWHELM.  You can watch it here in my Facebook group (if you aren’t a member, you can request to join it) – http://bit.ly/2JQy4tN where we discussed some of these same sort of reactive situations.

To counteract being reactive is to become proactive, but it’s tough – especially if we have been hardwired to be reactive.

Being proactive includes:

  • Tracking your time to see what’s taking up those precious hours that you have to work on your business – you might be surprised at what’s taking the most time!  I use a program called Toggl, it’s free – can be installed on your laptop, android or Apple devices, or used straight from a browser – it’s available from https://toggl.com/
  • Creating a list of things you need to do, prioritizing them, and blocking out time to actually get them done.  I use Evernote (which is a virtual notebook that never runs out of pages or sections).  You can create a free Evernote account and install it on your laptop, android or Apple devices, or used straight from a browser – sign up here https://evernote.com
  • Some people swear by Trello, personally I find it too distracting.

What tools and techniques do you use to keep yourself organized and proactive?

I’d love to know!  Leave a comment or better yet, come join the Facebook group and join the discussion below the video.

Now, I’m off to put out that fire – block my dishcloths, prepare my inventory list, make sure everything is priced and tagged for next weeks Mother’s Day open house event.

Until next week – Happy Handmade!

Nancy

P.S.  Watch for next weeks blog post where I provide you with more details about my FREE upcoming webinar workshop called – So, you want to start a handmade business – 10 Things EVERY handmade business owner should know!  

 

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Nancy Smyth, The Yarny Bookkeeper

Hi, I'm Nancy. I'm a yarn addict and a number cruncher - strange combination right? Well I get the same feeling of joy when working with yummy yarns as I do when working with a column of numbers that all add up correctly.

Bookkeeping for your handmade business doesn't need to be scary. I can help you learn to handle your bookkeeping with confidence!

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