Weekly-ish notes on navigating big change

make money

Instead of comparing, explore


instead of comparing explore

“I'm just not doing enough. I thought it would have already happened. I might be missing *something* because everyone else is doing so much better, faster.”

I hear this all the time, from Captains, clients, friends…and inside my own head.

If you read some blogs, it seems that everyone is always killing it. That they're making a lot, selling a lot, and generally rolling around in piles of money, while working on a beach.

Apparently, everyone in the world is measuring the success of their business in figures. And they're all large. And successful.
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Perhaps I'm especially sensitive to this because in the last year of teaching Pay Yourself (a class about calculating profit) to a variety of artists + makers, I had the chance to dig into real numbers from real people.
And in every instance, the things that were not profitable were the things they didn't really want to do. They were only doing them because someone else did. Or someone “successful” said to.

So I've got this unique perspective. I see the loud claims of showy success and I see the real insides of some amazing creatives. I see what really works and what is supposed to work and doesn't.

But when you can't see the insides – when you're just you,  working away at making your dream real – all these “success stories” can wear you out, discourage you, or worst of all – kick off a new round of the comparison game, where you start measuring your success by everyone else's. 

No matter how many times you tell yourself to ignore it, it can be discouraging. You forget that gross income (or, the money you take in) is not the same as net profit (the money you get to keep after paying all your expenses)…and most people are talking about their gross income. You can think that every month is a big blockbuster month for everyone and that no one else has slim (and fat) months.

(They do, they really do. In a recent Starship chat every single member present spoke up to encourage another and said: Yep, I've been there.)

All of this confusion about what's real + the non-stop comparison game going on in your head is why you won't hear me talking about “how to make six figures.” I'd rather help you explore where your profitability already is. I'd rather you  set a doable goal for the next three months and work towards that. I'd rather you explore what you want, so you can pursue it wholeheartedly. I'd rather connect you with other explorers who are real and encouraging and honest.

Because THAT is the real secret to how you get to those huge numbers – you slowly build to them step by step, by expanding on what's working and sustainably growing your capacity and your audience. 

That's how you get the small successes that lead to the bigger picture.

It's not a sexy message, I know. But it's real and true and encouraging and full of so much HOPE. Your tomorrow can be different. If can be what you want, but you have to make it so*.


*A Captain Picard nod for my fellow geeks

Tomorrow I open Pay Yourself. 
In it, we'll work with your real numbers to determine where the profitability is (and isn't) so you can laser-focus on the aspects of your business that support sustainable growth. It's not sexy, but it's gentle and encouraging and you only have to do math on ONE day. Registration opens tomorrow + it closes in just over a week, on February 21st. This is the last time I'll be holding it live online with a community of fellow explorers.

If you'd like to get real about your money, the downloadable class is available any time, right here!

If you'd like a sneak peek at how we'll talk about budgeting as a tool for earning more inside Pay Yourself, you can read my post here on OhMyHandmade.

The hard and soft of Money

I've been thinking about money. And making it.

Not just because I'm teaching a class about it, but because my IdeaStormers have been asking about it (which is why I'm teaching a class about it).

The not-yet-in-business people want to know how do you  pick something, how do you know that it will make money?

The owners of baby-businesses want to know how they make more of it, enough to quit their job or just cover their overhead.

The thriving-crafty-businesses want to know how to balance the different things they offer and what new stream they should jump into.

And no one is asking me “But how can I be ok with money?”
We're not talking about theories or practices or internal stuff.
Havi makes the distinction between  the in-the-soft stuff (feelings, emotions, stuckness) and in-the-hard stuff (actions, ideas, strategies).

The in-the-soft stuff is super important.

Even though I am not teaching the dealing-with-your-money-stuck stuff, I want to pause and tell you that this is a vital step.
You just won't be able to take the next step until you acknowledge the stuff that's keeping you from that step.
The in-the-soft stuff is what moves you from knowing what to do to actually doing it.

But before you can do it, you have to know it.

And that's where this class comes in.

Because we can't move on to dealing with the deeper stuff of crafting a business (and a life), until we all know the basics.

The you can make money as a crafter in these ways, along with  and here's how you can make it sustainable stuff.

Basic doesn't mean beginner.
Basic means at the base.
The very foundation of building a crafty business.

All of the Right Price and Right People isn't going to get you anywhere if you don't know how your business will make money. If you don't know the options available even after you have an established business.

I am crazy excited about this class, but I'm even more excited for the what will come from the class. New businesses, new inspirations, new streams of income for crafters.

The class is tomorrow, but even if you can't make the live call, you'll still get a recording + all the materials. You can sign up right here.

If you feel like you know what to do…

but need some in-the-soft help? Here's what I do:

What helps you in-the-soft?
What do you want to know for in-the-hard action?

You make money doing…what?

It’s the first question I get when I tell strangers that I’m a full-time fiber artist:

You can make money doing that?

Yep. And I’m the “breadwinner” for our family (ugh, I hate that phrase!).

My yarny business pays the rent.
And the electricity.
It brings home the puppy chow.
It send me to New York City and Seattle and our family to weekends at the beach.

But how?

It’s another phrase I don’t love: multiple streams of income.

I make money several ways with my yarn: teaching, writing, photography, selling it in a multitude of settings.

I combine that with my Super Secret Process of Making Money Right Now.

I've said this before.

It's possible to make money making what you love.
Possible (if you want!) to make enough to quit your dayjob.

It's a combination of Right Pricing and Right People and Trying Stuff.

But is that enough?

Have I really told you everything I know about Making Rent?

I've told you all about the marketing part, but what about the what-to-offer part?
I've went on and on about making it easy to give you money, but have I really told you all the ways to make money?

Let's talk about money, baby.

Let's talk about all the different ways your crafty biz can make money.
Let's talk about what to do when rent is due in 2 days and what am I going to do?
Let's talk about getting out of that rushlastminutedoom space and into something more sustainable.

Let's talk about next Tuesday, at 3p, for around 2 hours.
Join me (and get all the gory details), right here.

And if you questions on how to do it….

Ask me in the comments!
I'll be answering your questions for the next week, on the blog!