Welcome to the Sunray Sister blog! At the end of each month, I like to look back at the little things that made me smile, and the bigger things which I’m pretty proud of. Then I put them into a list which I call my ‘Happy Highlights’. (I’ve also included a bonus mid-year goals review today, so there is slightly more to read than usual if you’re feeling brave!)
This month I…
- Completed the #ColourMyEveryDay Instagram challenge by Adventures and Tea Parties… minus a few days. But it has helped me get back into the swing of social media, and take my Instagram game more seriously!
- Created a pen pals video – and it now has the most views out of all my videos so far, at 268!
- Recorded a music cover video as a special surprise for my dad.
- Went home for father’s day, and soaked up lots of sunshine.
- Experienced a super hot week, followed by some nice cool weather.
- Had a successful interview and got a new job, at the same place where my boyfriend works!
- Started a daily yoga practice using Yoga with Adriene‘s ’30 day yoga camp’ video series – and I feel great!
- Went on some mini adventures in Bristol – featuring Leigh Woods, Ashton Court and Blaise Castle.
- Enjoyed the most incredible vegan chocolate sorbet at Swoon!!! And then my work colleague Allison baked an awesome vegan chocolate cake! Yum!
- Felt super creative – experimenting with mixed-media and collage, as well as finishing my next YouTube video and getting endless ideas for other videos to create next!
What were your best achievements and happiest moments from June? Share your stories in the comments below, or join the party over on Instagram!
As a special bonus, I’ve decided to incorporate a 2017 business goals reflection into this month’s happy highlights post, seeing as we are now 6 months into the year!
First of all, here is my original list of goals, as explained in my 2017 business goals post:
- Focus brand on spreading positivity through creativity
- Write business plan
- Stick to products which are sewn/made of fabric
- Use reduced and sustainable packaging
- Create YouTube videos
- Have 60+ items in Etsy shop at one time
- Have 50+ Etsy sales
- Get public liability insurance
- Have a stall at 20+ craft fairs
- Get products in at least one local shop
- Attend 5+ Etsy seller monthly meet-ups
- Increase social media following to 300+ on each platform
- Use a social media strategy
- Write blog posts at least one week in advance
- Gain 20+ WordPress followers
Now I ask: what can I eliminate or change to feel better about my goals? What still applies? What new goals can I add? Using a mid-year review worksheet by Lavendaire, I have gone back over my goals below, and then created a totally new set of goals for the next 6 months.
Focus brand on spreading positivity through creativity Before I was set on helping other people first, and myself second. Now I see that if I focus on myself first, I will be happier and be able to set an example. Show don’t tell. So I changed ‘Positivity via creativity’, into ‘Adventures in art and nature’.
Write business plan I still need to clarify my purpose, so I’m not ready to write my business plan after all!
Stick to products which are sewn/made of fabric This definitely does not apply anymore, since I’ve been rediscovering my love of collage, paint and paper, and the freedom this provides.
Use reduced and sustainable packaging Something still close to my heart, but right now it isn’t relevant, since I’m not selling anything.
- Create YouTube videos Yes! This is going well so far, and I intend to keep it up!
Have 60+ items in Etsy shop at one time Since I’ve gone back to square one, I don’t really have anything to sell right now, except for my sewn products which don’t really reflect the new direction I’m taking! Maybe this will change by the end of the year, but I don’t want it to be a goal.
Have 50+ Etsy sales
Get public liability insurance
Have a stall at 20+ craft fairs
- Get products in at least one local shop Even though I don’t have anything new to sell yet, I do still have quite a few of my fabric creations. Right now they’re in my Etsy shop, but this creates a constant expense, so selling them in a local shop could be more beneficial.
Attend 5+ Etsy seller monthly meet-ups I went to one in December, but haven’t been since. This is still relevant, but I don’t want it to be a goal; it just needs to be a natural thing that I feel comfortable doing when I’m ready.
- Increase social media following to 300+ on each platform I am making gradual progress here, and think this number is still achievable by the end of the year, but only for Instagram.
- Use a social media strategy This is an area I have been working on recently, especially for Instagram, so I plan to keep this up. I have other social media sites, but I’m not focusing on them right now.
- Write blog posts at least one week in advance I still can’t quite master this, but it will definitely help to have posts written well in advance!
- Gain 20+ WordPress followers I’m not sure how relevant this is, since most people only seem to follow on social media sites, and maybe not on blogs. So I will leave this off my revised list.
With all the above in mind, I have written out a new set of goals below for the next 6 months. They are organised into four key areas, with a clear break down of focus points for each.
- Create more art, whilst being mindful of impact on the environment – use recycled materials, avoid plastic packaging etc.
- Combine love of collage, paint and drawing to find/define my style – see Alena Hennessey, Karen O’Brien and others.
- Also explore nature/landscape art – see Andy Goldsworthy and Richard Long, also Keri Smith.
- Absorb inspiration everywhere!
- Post every day – both on my grid (permanent) and in my ‘story’ (temporary).
- Plan content for whole week in advance – done by Sunday of each week.
- Focus on art content, with occasional nature related images.
- Comment on similar posts by people I admire.
- Reach 300 followers.
- Post every Wednesday.
- Create videos in advance – uploaded by Sunday of each week. Ultimate aim is to have four videos ready at the start of each month.
- Focus on art & crafts content, with occasional adventure and lifestyle.
- Comment on similar videos by people I admire.
- Reach 3,000 total views across all videos – this is the number which will let me ‘monetize’ my channel once I get to 10,000 views!
- Post every Wednesday and Sunday.
- Write in advance – ready at least 2 days before post day.
- Focus on ‘Dear Diary’, ‘Happy Highlights’ and YouTube posts.
As you can see, most of my rewritten business goals revolve around the online world. Doing art things in person often requires a large investment. Money is something I don’t have to spare right now, especially not for expenses such as public liability insurance, craft fair fees and ordering products like prints and postcards.
So for the next few months at least, my focus will be on creating original artwork, and sharing it via online content. Instagram, YouTube and WordPress are all free, and I have time to spare. Therefore I have a safe place to experiment with art and share my adventures in nature, without the risk of losing anything.
To summarise I have chosen my top 3 business priorities for the next 3 months, also inspired by Lavendaire’s video and worksheet. What would be on your list? Let me know in the comments!
- Create art to share on Instagram.
- Create art to share on YouTube.
- Share my journey and behind-the-scenes on WordPress.
Coming up I will (finally) have a new YouTube video on Wednesday; this week sharing the process behind a fun, Summer-themed collage. In the meantime remember to come and say hi on Instagram! I’m there every day!
See you soon and enjoy the sunshine sisters!
Peace and love,