If you’ve just started a business or blog, or even if you’ve been at it a while, then you know things can become overwhelming – fast! Especially if you’re juggling a 9-5, young children, or just don’t have enough hours in the day.
When I started to realize my website was more than just a hobby (aka a real business) I didn’t know there would be so many moving parts.
Without a solid plan in place you’ll probably be spinning your wheels for a long time. Most people try to do all the things and quickly get burnt out or just give up on their dreams completely.
That’s why I’m so excited to share this interview with Emily of My Adaptable Career who knows how to plan efficiently and turn your ideas into obtainable goals.
Read the interview below to meet Emily, learn about her business and her secrets to accomplishing more by doing less!
Tell us more about yourself and why you started your business and blog, My Adaptable Career?
Hi everyone! I’m Emily and I have two kids under the age of 5, a husband who travels all the time for his job, a business, and no time to waste. Because time is my most limited resource, I’m always pushing to get bigger and better results in my business without working any more hours. And I help other bloggers do the same.
As you can probably guess, I started My Adaptable Career because I wanted a flexible career that fit around my life. I used to freelance, but even that wasn’t flexible enough for me! I wanted total control over my schedule, my successes, and my failures. I know so many other bloggers and online business owners feel the same way. The tricky part is being your own boss. Sometimes it’s hard to figure out where to focus your time and energy. And that’s what I help other bloggers do: get the clarity and confidence they need to take their business to the next level.
What have you found to be the most rewarding aspect of owning a business?
Haha, in case you couldn’t tell, the flexibility is definitely my favorite part. I love that I can put my family first, but still have a creative outlet beyond my kids. I also love experimenting. It’s exhilarating to try new things and see if they help me grow my business faster. Of course, when my experiments flop, I get a little flustered, but I’ve had enough wins to make it worth it.
What did you discover to be the biggest obstacle in growing a successful business?
My own hang-ups have been my biggest obstacle, which is hard to accept. I’d like to think my mindset is rock solid, but in truth, it’s something I always need to work on. Here’s an example: I like to think of myself as a perfectionist, but when I sat down and thought about (1 year into my business!), I realized that “getting it perfect” was really just an excuse to procrastinate. And let’s just say, I procrastinated a lot! So I’m always trying to improve my mindset and push out of my comfort zone.
If others are struggling with that too, what’s the #1 thing you would recommend they do?
If you want to work on your mindset, my top tip is to do the thing that makes you feel most uncomfortable. For me, that’s getting visible. I was literally shaking before I did my first Facebook live video. I couldn’t sleep the night before! But I pushed myself to do it, and now it’s easier every time. I can go live spontaneously without stressing about it. Now my newest fear is running ads. I don’t like the thought of losing money, and I hate when I don’t feel competent at something (like running ads). So I’m doing the scary thing because I know that if it’s scary, it’s probably the thing that will move my business forward the fastest.
All the aspects of running a business can be really overwhelming; I know I struggle with juggling everything! How do you deal with all the things and still have time for yourself?
Yes, it can be totally overwhelming! Luckily, prioritizing is one of my ninja skills. For my own business, I rarely work more than 20 hours a week, both because I’m solo parenting 2 little kids much of the time and because I know if I don’t rest and take care of myself I’ll burn out. So my trick is to eliminate as many things as possible and protect my most productive time. I don’t schedule anything from 9 am – noon because I can get tons of work done while my daughter is at preschool and my baby naps and crawls around the house. As for eliminating the non-essentials, I’m always looking to cut out things that aren’t helping me grow my business. I analyze certain stats every month in my business (and you can read more about my process here), which helps me figure out what’s working and what’s a waste of time.
When you do have a spare moment, what do you like to do for fun or to wind down?
I love to read fiction and drink wine while I sit on my couch. That’s my normal nightly routine. 🙂 As a family, we also love to travel. So I spend a lot of my downtime planning new trips and fantasizing about our next vacation.
When it comes to time management and productivity, what’s the biggest secret you’ve learned?
I think the biggest secret I’ve learned is that productivity is not about doing more. It’s about doing less and doing better. I’m pretty minimalist in my home life, and I’m trying to be that way more with my blog and business. I’m always testing, tweaking, trying to do less, but do the more important and valuable work.
I’m such a sucker for a new productivity tool or system. I definitely buy into hype and try all the new strategies and tools. But 99% of the time, I find that those tools and strategies just add to the chaos and overwhelm. Getting back to the basics and eliminating unessential tasks is what’s helped me turn my blog into a profitable business without working more than 20 hours a week.
You have a course called Planning for Success that helps biz owners get closer to their goals and plan effectively. Can you tell us more about it and what students can expect to learn?
Planning for Success is a business planning course specifically designed for bloggers and online business owners who are overwhelmed and struggling to grow. In the course, my students learn how to clarify their goals, prioritize their workload, and manage their time so they can make more money with ease.
My students especially love the clarity they’ve gotten from taking the course. Many of them have taken huge leaps with their businesses after working through the course. I’ve had several students launch their first product soon after taking the course because they realized it’s the fastest way for them to monetize. I’ve had other students use information from the course to help them set better boundaries. Boundaries don’t sound sexy, but it’s been really transformational to watch these women say “no” to various distractions, which gives them more time to work strategically on their business and more time to relax and enjoy life.
Everyone gets something different from the course, but the common thread is that most of my students start working more strategically, which leads to the major transformation they’ve been waiting for in their business.
What inspired you the most to create this course? Who did you have in mind to help?
I wanted to help small bloggers get bigger results without sacrificing their time and freedom. I know how overwhelming it is to start a business and how hard it is to balance everything on your to do list. I wanted to help people streamline and grow at the same time. Ultimately, I want to help them run a successful business while still having plenty of time to enjoy everything else in life.
Most of my students aren’t full time bloggers, but they’d like to be. They’ve got a 9-5 job, or young kids, or both, and their business fits into the margins of their day. Because their time is so limited, they want to make sure they’re always working on the right thing to grow their business. They don’t have time to waste! So I help them evaluate what’s working and not working, make a plan to grow, and take action on that plan.
How long will Planning for Success be open for enrollment?
Just 6 days! I’ll kick off enrollment with a free planning workshop on February 8. There will be a special bonus for people who enroll during the free workshop, so sign up if you’re curious about Planning for Success. The doors will close on February 13, so I can shower new students with love on Valentine’s Day. And also because enrollment is only open for 6 days. 😉
Emily McGee is the founder of My Adaptable Career, where she helps small bloggers get big results through better planning and productivity. Ready to organize your blog post ideas and create content that blows your audience away? Check out this guide to creating epic content and download a free editorial calendar template.