Q= We are totally amazed at the wonderful things your are doing over at Smart Creative Women…please share with us your story and why you started your blog?
I was a professional illustrator who worked mostly alone, but I was always inspired and motivated by other people and their stories. I love nothing more than to curl up with a girlfriend and have a good chat but I found that I wasn’t able to do much of that working in my solo career. All I looked forward to were trade shows so I could visit and network with people. My husband said, “I think people will pay you to be Monica, just use your personality.” I laughed at first but it planted a seed. I spent the next three months trying to think of a way to make that statement happen. Then I founded Smart Creative Women, a place for conversation. I figured if I needed to learn, grow and get inspired then other people need it, too.
Q= Our monthly theme is focused on “Spring cleaning your life to a better you”…please share with us any recent changes you have made personally to improve and make your business and home life better?
I recently simplified my editorial calendar and let go of a few unpaid writing gigs. I was so busy last year that I did not have time to take on some projects that I really wanted to so I made a conscious decision to make room for them. I also set distinct interview and clarity coaching days during each week. This helps me know what days will then become errand days for our household. I think it can make a BIG difference to say to your family, “I am not able to do that on Thursday’s but let’s do it on Friday.” Setting expectations is key.
Q= Share with us a few business do’s and don’ts that can help any woman find success in her area of business?
1) Don’t talk yourself out of something before you even begin. Doubt is normal but I find often women let doubt paralyze then into in-action.
2) Know that you are going to wear a lot of different hats so embrace it. I didn’t want to learn the tech side of doing video but I simply had to wade through it to get to the meat of my vision. Tackle the booking, the marketing, the tech stuff. Even if you end up hiring someone to do certain aspects of you business, it is important to have done some kind of research so you are not giving away your ability to make the right decisions for your business.
3) Get a cheerleader! This is a big part of why I started Smart Creative Women! I had days where I was listening to the voices in my own head and letting my mind go down a defeated path. You are going to have days like this and it is important to make sure those days don’t turn into weeks or months! Staying on top of your mental game is paramount. I really address this in my mini crash course Smart Creative Dreaming!
Q= Is there a trick to monetizing a blog? Please share with us your top tips for making a blog profitable?
Have something to sell! This can be tough I know but I heard someone say, “If people are coming to your website everyday, why aren’t you selling them something?” It made sense! I realize that women are uncomfortable ASKING for money but whether it is through affiliate links, advertising, downloadable tips, crafts or art whatever-it is not a bad idea to ask yourself what you have that people could buy so that you can keep blogging!
Thank you so much for your inspiration and insights….I love how you took that leap and started Smart Creative Women! You never know until you try whether your dream can really work…a little courage is all WE need. Love your personal spring cleaning advice too…simplify…I personally try to overcomplicate things way too much. It hits me like a ton of bricks after I have tried to finish a project that seems to be taking forever…there is a much more simple way to do it and I was making it way too hard. Life can be so much easier when we just Simplify!
Here is a short little video clip of Monica sharing how she has taken back her time! This has allowed her to work on the projects she never seems to get to…very much like Rebekah’s Westover’s advice on setting specific days of the week for certain tasks instead of trying to conquer that huge to do list everyday. So far this past week I have been implementing taking back my time with a specific task per day schedule and I can not tell you how much better I already feel! Yesterday in fact I not only made dinner on time but I had almost had tonights dinner prepped and ready to go. My Husband asked me if I had a FEVER! LOL….this spring cleaning is really working! It feels good to take my time back! Try it out and you will see too!