20 Things to Do When you don’t know what to do now

An alternative title for this could be – How to stop overthinking everything and be more visible or “I’m feeling overwhelmed too. Here’s what I’ve been doing about it and you can too”

I wrote this post because this has been my experience and, when I speak to people, this is yours too. You want to get more done but you spend so much time dwelling, overthinking or worse panicking that you just don’t get what you want to done.

Ok so let me preface sharing these tips by saying – getting more done isn’t the key to success. Getting more of what YOU want to get done IS. A happy life is a successful life, no matter how you define that happiness.

I’ve been holding off sharing this blog post which, would you believe it, I started writing BA (that’s Before Apocalypse – humour is one of my coping mechanisms, forgive me). I realised that now is an even more important time to share my tips because whilst there’s always going to be challenges, I believe we are much more resilient than we give ourselves credit for. We can use the worry + fear to stop us in our tracks or we can keep it practical, get a daily routine in place however new, and understand this one important fact:

There is no race.

Glad we got that out of the way. I’m working on a bigger thing so I can help you more with building your visibility in these challenging times but in the meantime please read on to learn my tips on what to say when you have no idea what to say.

In these dramatic times, people are spending more time online than ever and it’s up to you be involved as much as you want.

I repeat, as much as you want.

We all know by now that if we want to be found by our potential clients we need to be visible. But how? Whilst we may feel despondent, these negative thoughts and feelings can be usefully added to the list of reasons why we weren’t posting on social media or writings blogs (if at all) on our sites but this time we feel better about it because we know others feel the same.

But if you feel like this might actually be a good opportunity to get started with an actual Plan of Action (caps needed) then you’re in the right place.

If you’ve been following me for a while you know I have two keen focuses – SEO and self care. Because the way I see it, being more visible takes a lot of energy at the best of times but right now it may feel a lot so in this post I’ve got self care tips AND practical solutions for your business no matter where you’re at right now.

10 Self Care Tips for Self Employed People

I’m not a professional at this. I wanted to share a few things that have been helping me cope and when I share them, others have told me they have helped them too.

  1. Try not to allow the panic + overwhelm to halt your entire life. Do what you need to do to take each day one by one (I am fully aware I am not a parent. You lot deserve medals)
  2. I made a list of things that I’ve survived + thrived both personal and business-wise. This was eye opening and reassuring. Like when 10 years ago during the recession, I lost my job on which I was way too emotionally dependent, I was up to my eyeballs in debt, I lost a family member and my flat all in the space of 3 months. It was a crazy year.
  3. I had a good tidy up of my workspace – creating a designated workspace can apparently help tell your brain you’re in the place where you do work productively.
  4. Creating an action list that helps keep my bigger goals in mind
  5. Having a daily cry (I don’t mind admitting this, I think it’s perfectly normal in these circumstances tbh)
  6. Creating a To Daa list (celebrating the things you’ve accomplished)
  7. I’ve been bingeing on Prime and Netflix (yes, I have a spreadsheet which I’m sharing here because so many people ask me ‘Got any recommendations?’)
  8. I’ve been reading actual books (The Middle Finger Project by Ash Ambirge is amazing and now I’m onto Elton John’s autobiography)
  9. I’ve been meditating a lot more than ever and I’m finding this book very useful (email me if you want a PDF version, they offer an electronic version out for free)
  10. My pal Rowan has been amazing at sharing latest advice and what we can do to help ourselves as self-employed people.

Practical solutions for our businesses

Now more than ever we see how much we crave connection. Guess where we can still be connected? THAT’S RIGHT, THE INTERNET. People are spending more time online than ever, and they want something to look forward to so step into the light people, now is your time. Being a memorable brand which, let’s face it, you want to be, requires the following points:

  • Creating a great customer experience

Are you in touch with your clients? A lot of people I know have been, and a lot of people I know are scared to be. I think the best solution is to take charge of the situation and contact them first. They’ll want to hear reassurance from you to check that you have solutions in place to cover the bookings you’ve got together.

What questions do they have? This is where you can actually share your experience and expertise. What I always say to my clients is…you know more than the people who have hired you so share that experience, tell them your plans.

Refresh your portfolio page(s) on your website and divide it up into categories like London Wedding Cakes and Surrey Wedding Cakes, so they’re more easily findable online

Update your text on your website – are you telling a story with the text on every page as well as the images?

Write those blog posts you’ve been meaning to put out for a while that you know will be useful for your audience when the time is right! Find ways to re-purpose your images and create 10 favourite X, 5 favourite X. It’s a great way to then link to other content you’ve previously published!

  • Tell your stories

If you’re wondering how to share about any of this and indeed whether it’s flippant to continue sharing stuff that isn’t pandemic related, then rest assured people WANT the escapism. They WANT something to look forward to. They WANT to feel inspired. You’re sitting on the gold. Don’t hide away. Publish that post. Share that content.

  • Speak your customer’s language

Your potential clients WANT to know the answers to question you know the answers to.

Create Instagram Stories around people’s commonly asked questions

Write one blog post per question so that when people google those questions you have a better chance of coming up in the results

Re-share older blog content that was popular before so you don’t have to constantly create new content (cheer people up! They want escapism!)

  • Create easy content

Put a call out on your Stories for requests to create a playlist related to what you do (first dance playlist, working from home playlist, etc) and create it on Spotify and then share on Stories / social media

Read my blog post about how to create your best of and do some round up posts of your own. Doesn’t have to be at the end of the year! It could be your 5 favourite first dances, 5 favourite bouquets, etc etc.

Create a funny post because humour works, that gets people talking like my business story told entirely in GIFs which people still come and talk to me about years later (I update it once a year)

  • Be a human bean

Needing inspiration? Indulge in some Youtube videos or podcasts like….

Watch YouTube channels and feel inspired (like my Gin & Magic series where I chat to strong creative women about how they make their lives work) Figuring it all out with Julie Michaelsen is a good one and so is What do our clients really want with Faye Cornhill!

Listen to some podcasts and write down action points. Here are a few I’ve been on that people have found very useful:

    1. Business Proposal 
    2. How to with Zoe Dew
    3. Females on Fire podcast

You could take this time to review your big picture. Look at your goals and remember it isn’t a race. I am often met with surprise that a whole module of my Let’s Get You Found group course is dedicated to making goals. Those who have already set goals go ‘pfft I have those already’ and those who haven’t set goals go ‘yeah yeah I know I should have them but well, I don’t’. The goals I’m talking about can be either personal or business but honestly this is one of the biggest things I’ve learned in my business. People, I never set specific goals until a couple of years ago and it CHANGED MY LIFE.

Take this opportunity for a digital de-clutter like cleaning up files on your computer, sorting your photos out, deleting things you don’t need any more. It’s quite satisfying and makes you feel like you’re doing something useful. Which you are.

If you’re worried you can’t do the styled shoots as planned….get in touch with suppliers you planned the shoot with and write a guest post for one other supplier in that group

Reach out to suppliers you’ve been wanting to forge a connection with and offer to write guest posts for them wanting nothing in return except for a link back to your website.

So there we have it, a round up of self care tips and some simple visibility tips for you to put into action. What was your favourite tip? Come and tell me on Instagram 🙂

Virtual hugs,

Maddy x

📸Verity Westcott Photography when I was speaking at South West Wedmeetup recently.

Maddy x
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Maddy Shine - Visibility Expert