01: How to trust your gut instincts when it’s time to pivot in your business
Are you in the middle of a pivot? Of a change in your life or business? I think if you were a human being in 2020-2021 … you went through some sort of change. And for business owners especially, that change can feel devastating. Because we’ve worked SO FRICKIN HARD to build our businesses, and for a lot of us, the changes can make us feel like we’re pushed right off the foundation we worked so hard to build. It’s like we’ve been running on a slippery path for 18 months, right? Like we cannot get our footing to just gain a little traction and move forward.
Can you relate to this? Do you feel like you’re just a little wobbly on your feet? I know it’s uncomfortable… but guys we need to FIRST brace ourselves, then we need to stand back up and learn to trust our gut. Our gut is sometimes the only thing that we can be sure of in times like these. If you just have the courage to listen to it and believe it. Your gut is never wrong.
So, let me just start with a quick background for context. I’m Lindsay. I’ll be your host on The Build The Business Podcast. And I’m also currently the CEO of my wedding stationery company, Hoopla House Creative. I grew this company from $30k in year one to $300k in yearly revenue in just 5 years. There’s so much that’s gone into building and growing my business but don’t you worry, we will deconstruct all of it in our upcoming episodes.
So just as my business was running smoothly and I finally felt like I cracked the code and figured this out 2020 came. The blessing that came out of this was I got a pause in my business. I’ve always wanted to take the leap and venture into coaching and podcasts and personal development. Because these things have helped me grow my business tremendously, so I know first hand the power of learning. And I know I have knowledge to share – I grew this business 10x as a solopreneur.
But, I never had the time to devote to pivoting because I was a Wedding Stationer with 300 weddings per year! My business was a well oiled machine, but any pause to focus on something else would likely cause it to derail. QUE 2020. It was the pause I needed to push me head first into this venture. I found myself with 200 canceled weddings, and a gap in my business for the first time ever since I started.
It was NOW OR NEVER. I knew these 200 weddings we going to come back like a flood when things opened up again. So I needed to jump my gut, and make the leap. So, here I was. I had a little gap, I had the dream, I had the calling, I knew in my heart that this was what I was supposed to do….
But how do you trust your gut?
You might be right here at this fork in the road. If this is you, it’s time to grab those notebooks. We’re going to talk about what we need to do AND what we need to let go of to be able to truly trust your gut.
Because I don’t know about you, but I need things rooted in reality. I can’t just say… “ I know I’m meant to do this.” And then eat bon bons all day waiting for it to come true. You need to ground yourself in reality. So let’s dive in…
#1 SETTING UP THE FOUNDATION AND PLANTING THE SEEDS
Let’s start with a concept that I talk about a lot, the three seasons in business and in life. We all want to get to the 3rd season, Harvest. This is the good stuff. This is when we’re thriving, closing deals, booking clients.
In order for the harvest to come, we need to have gone through the two seasons before it. We needed to have the planting season … planting the seeds. And before that, we needed to have prepping season … tilling the soil.
You’re not just going to wake up one day and have the harvest there, right? You need to plant the seeds and you need to till the soil. It’s hard to have faith and trust your intuition when you’re planting those seeds that the harvest is coming. Especially when we’re in a position now after 2020 that this is do or die. We don’t have a lot of wiggle room for whatever we’re dreaming of not to work. But if you plant in fertile soil… trusting that the harvest is coming is not as scary.
So let’s recap…
Season Number One: Tilling the Soil
This is getting the ground fertile to receive. This is setting the foundation in your business. Things as straightforward as your website, pricing, services, etc. And as in depth as your messaging, narrowing down you serve, creating connections and warming up those leads. ALL OF THIS needs to be done before we plant the seeds. Sure, I can plant a pumpkin in my front yard. But is it going to harvest? I’m not sure, probably not. It would have a MUCH better chance of thriving in tilled, fertile soil.
Season Number Two: Planting the Seeds
Now that we have the foundation of our business, we’re ready to plant the seeds. This is showing up. Putting yourself out there on social media, sending that email blast, showing up to bridal shows for my fellow wedding pros listening. This is getting in front of who we are serving. You have already tilled the soil it’s fertile and ready to go… now you need to plant the seeds and show up.
Season Number Three: The Harvest
This is the successful season. Closing that sale. This is where we want to be. This is what we knew from our intuition, finally coming true.
If you’ve set the foundation and planted the seeds… there is no reason why you should not trust your gut. But we have to live in reality a bit, we have to set that foundation and plant the seeds. Some people forget those two steps. They show up to bridal shows or they post once on social media and they’re like, “I’m not getting any bookings!” and I’m like well are you connecting with your clients? Are you showing up consistently? Do you have a foundation in place? Are you doing those things to warm up the lead?
It is so much less of a risk to trust your gut if it is backed by the fact that you did the work. You’ve tilled the soil, it’s ready to receive. Plant the seed and watch it harvest.
#2 Free up space and buy back your time
This is all about letting something go (freeing up space) and investing in yourself (buying back your time). This can be a time investment, or a financial investment. All ultimately leads back to time.
For example, I’m setting up my podcast now. I invested in Jenna Kutcher’s course, “The Podcast Lab”. Love Jenna and do a lot of her stuff. So I’m learning from her, how to set this all up. It was a financial investment, but also paying for that investment bought back my time. I could have figured this out, right? I could’ve sat there and googled it every step of the way? We’re smart business owners, we can figure this out.
But, because Jenna was down that path before and started a successful podcast, The Goal Digger Podcast (you should all listen) – She created a course to teach me exactly how to do it. So instead of spending MONTHS on youtube trying to figure this out, why would I not learn from Jenna who’s gone down that path before me?
That’s an example of buying back your time. Freeing up that space so that you can have the mental capacity and focus to trust your intuition and go after your dreams. I want you to not think of this as an expense. Think of it as an investment to give you the space and time to go after your dream.
So let me pause and ask you – Do you trust yourself? Do you trust that you can do this. How can you translate the concept of buying back your time into your life and business? If you have a calling on your heart but feel trapped like you don’t have the time and space to make it happen – I’m right there girlfriends. Literally in real time.
I know it’s scary. But I’m giving you permission to buy back your time if you need to. If you trust your gut. If you trust your intuition. If you’ve set the foundation. If you’re rooted in the reality that you’ve set the foundation – then go for it. There is no reason why you shouldn’t make decisions to be able to set yourself up to fly. Sometimes that means making a financial investment for people to help you. Sometimes that means outsourcing. Sometimes that means saying NO to jobs or commitments to get back that precious time.
#3 Do it scared and jump
And finally, the last point I want to make about following your gut and intuition is a little bugger that I think we ALL have showing up in our life. Fear. We all have fear. I have fear, you have fear.
It shows up in business especially when we’re doing things that are not guaranteed. Entrepreneurship is NOT guaranteed. We don’t get a paycheck at the end of the week no matter how hard we work. It’s just not guaranteed.
There is always going to be an element of fear. I wish I could tell you that it goes away but it doesn’t. Fear can come with us on the journey, it can be there to check us a little bit to keep us from totally going off the rails. But it cannot be the navigator. It cannot grab the wheel.
When I started this stationery business 6 years ago, I set up the foundation (I tilled the soil), while still working at my 9-5. I would spend nights and weekends building my portfolio, setting up my processes, figuring out my prices, etc.
But there came a time, where I just had to jump ship. I had to burn the boat to take the island. I had to free up my space to go after my dreams. You gotta just dive in and let yourself fly. If you’ve set the foundation in place, it’s not that much of a risk. It’s less scary.
So friends, let me ask you. Do you have a calling on your heart? Do you believe in yourself? Because I certainly do. I believe that every single one of us listening can do this. You would NOT be listening to a podcast called, “Build That Business” if you didn’t have it in you to make this happen.
I did this. I built my business to $300k in yearly revenue from literally nothing. I was sitting on my couch with a laptop on nights and weekends building this business. Everybody can do this. EVERYONE can do this. I’ve done it, I know you can too.
You need to hear this – TRUST YOUR GUT.
I know you’ve probably heard it 1000 times but this time, I’m basing it in fool proof reality. You are setting the foundation. You are giving yourself the space to make it happen, you are taking the leap in spite of the fear, you are tilling the soil and planting the seeds. If you do all of this, and the harvest will come.