Reflection Before Resolutions 2019 | Nicole Victory Design

Reflection Before Resolutions 2019

I'm reflecting on all of the milestones Nicole Victory Design embraced in 2019, where I fell short, and where I'm headed in 2020. I hope to inspire you with setting your New Year's goals!

January 6, 2020

Here I am getting ready to start reflecting on 2019, and I’m feeling overwhelmed trying to write this post. I can’t help but feel I fell short with all of the goals I had set for myself. I was so focused on being aligned with everything I did that I ended up creating unrealistic expectations. I’m realizing that maybe some of the goals I set were not aligned with what was best for me and my business.

My husband will tell me I’m too hard on myself, but that’s just how I am. I feel like I’m starting 2020 at a crossroads and am ready to do even more with my business.

I worked with so many amazing clients in 2019 and continue to fine-tune my strategy process. The businesses I work with get more than a brand and a website, they get a deep-dive exploration of their business. I love this phase and am looking forward to further improving this aspect of my process.

I also had to turn down several projects due to clients’ budget constraints. Although I couldn’t work with everyone this year, I did realize there’s a need for access to high-quality branding for customers who have a limited budget. I plan to offer a service that still allows for laying a brand foundation but without the custom price.

The thing about this year is I got a good start on several projects and goals I’d set for myself, but I didn’t finish them. Starting is almost always the most difficult but so is finishing when the enthusiasm has worn off.

Now that I’ve given myself an honest evaluation of how the year unfolded, it’s time for detailed reflection and new goal setting!

I’m answering these 5 compelling questions to set my life and business up for success in the New Year.

1. What are you most proud of this year?

I have several things I’m really proud of!

  • I stood my ground on my pricing and didn’t surrender to every discount that clients asked for. It’s so hard to turn work down, but I stood by my value.
  • I invested in my first online course, and it was amazing! I discovered Manifestation Babe via her Podcast and have found her advice and philosophy on life to be very inspiring. I invested in her Manifestation Babe Academy course and immediately began to experience a healthy mind shift.
  • My micro flower farm continues to bring me so much joy! I expanded my cut flower garden and grew more and more flowers! At some point, I’ll have every inch of our tiny yard covered in flowers.
  • I traveled more.
  • I started working out with a trainer
  • This last one is something I have mixed emotions about. I hired a collection agency to recover money owed to me by a client who decided to stop paying me back in 2018. I finally got fed up with some clients taking advantage of me, and I did something about it. Although I didn’t recover all of the money I was owed, I did recover some. I felt very empowered by taking this action, and it helped me continue to stand up for myself and my pricing.

2. What’s your biggest mistake or what are you least proud of this year?

At the beginning of 2019, I vowed to become more mindful in every aspect of my life. I had periods of time where I embraced living in the moment, meditated regularly, and tuned out my natural tendency to catastrophize.

I devoured several self-help books but am still have trouble relaxing and am longing to know what the joy of doing nothing feels like. My anxiety continues to be a problem, so I will continue to work on this aspect of myself.

3. What process or processes aren’t working for your business or what would you like to improve?

There were several months where I became easily overwhelmed because many of my large projects fell along the same timeline. I always want to design from a place of calm and clarity. Ideally, I want to be more proactive within my business instead of being in a position of reaction.

I still continue to struggle with overlapping brand and website launches, so time management and scheduling is something I need to improve upon.

I made great progress on streamlining my intake, booking process, and project management this year. There’s always room for improvement, so I’m going to further develop my business systems for a better client experience.

4. What’s your number one goal for the new year?

I’m going to be an overachiever on this question and choose more than one goal.

The first goal listed below is the MOST important to me. I’m putting it out there, so I can hold myself accountable. Its only been on my list for over 2 years. Sigh.

Finish my new website, update my portfolio, and test out new promotional outlets. A common problem among designers is making time to update their website and portfolio. I’m usually so caught up in my clients’ businesses, that I tend to put my own marketing on the back burner.

I did manage to make some progress on my new website this year but still have so much more work to do. I’m not going to let the overwhelm stop me from finishing this important project. 2020 will include the launch of my new website!

I finally followed the advice I give to all of my clients and set up a Google Business page this year. It’s still a work in progress, but I really want to experiment with some different advertising and promotional avenues for my business. Many of my clients find me via word of mouth, and I’d love to really expand my reach beyond my immediate network.

Set up my basement studio space

This task has also been on my list for the last two years. I did make some progress in January by having Goodwill haul off a truckload of stuff that was cluttering up our basement.

Client work and my micro flower farm took priority over the studio space project, so once again my corner of the basement has filled up with piles of stuff.

I did install a grow light system early in the year to get a head start on seedlings, and this project didn’t go very well. Two lavender seedlings were the only ones to survive out of the hundreds of varieties of seeds I planted. I want to get this space organized and give it another go in 2020.

I’ve always had an overwhelming need to design, create, and work with my hands. I’m also a very structured and organized person and don’t feel I can really let loose in a creative space until I have it perfectly set up. Yes, I’m a walking contradiction at times.

I’m anxious to finish this project, so hopefully, that’s motivation enough to make it happen.

Last but not least, I’m going to be more mindful and embrace gratitude.

I’m constantly reading self-help books and working on bettering myself. I read an oldie but a goodie over the Summer, The Power of Now, which is the ultimate instruction manual on mindfulness.

Accepting that there is no past and there is no future was an extremely difficult concept for me to grasp. In fact, I still don’t have my head wrapped around it because I’m always making plans and worrying about what has already happened or is going to happen.

My current mindset is a huge contributing factor to my unrelenting anxiety, and I’m determined to transform this aspect of myself.

I made progress with more meditation 2019, but I’ve set a goal to incorporate more of this practice in my everyday life for 2020.

All of the above is a large overhaul on how I exist in this world, but I’m a work in progress, just like the rest of us. I’m visualizing calm days beginning with mediation, mindfully enjoying my meals, and enjoying all the moments life as to offer, even the slow and boring parts.

Most important, I will only focus on what I can control and let go of the rest. Taking action without being attached to a specific outcome is going to be a challenge but I’m ready!

5. How will you bring more value to your clients?

I’ve found there’s a huge need for high quality branding without the custom design process or pricing. I’m frequently asked why I charge the prices I do for my custom design work and the answer is that I do so much more than slap a logo together. I spend countless hours researching and learning about my clients’ businesses and customers. There’s so much intentional strategy that goes into creating a brand that represents a sustainable business.

I do realize that not everyone has the budget or time to devote to this extensive custom process. Therefore, I’m going to be offering a semi-custom option for a variety of businesses very soon. I’m really excited about this new service I’ll be offering because I get to serve even more clients and bring many of my unused branding concepts out into the world.

My Semi-custom service will help businesses lay a solid foundation for a meaningful brand that they can build upon once their budget allows.

Here’s a summary of my 2020 plans:

  • Finally finish my new website and update my portfolio
  • Create and launch my semi-custom brand shop
  • Continue to improve my time and project management skills, so I can give the best of myself to my clients.
  • Clear out the basement clutter, set up my studio space, and set aside time for personal projects in this new space.
  • Grow more flowers!
  • Make time to meditate and be more mindful in all aspects of my life

Ok, I’ve finished spilling my guts, and I wanna hear from you! How are you reflecting on your life and business this year? Leave me a comment below.

Happy New Year to everyone!

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