23 Days!

It’s 4.45am and I am excitedly getting the last of my little backpack ready for the next 23 days!

Today my Sister & I fly to Kathmandhu in Nepal. We’re staying at a place called Thamel in the heart of Kathmandhu for a couple of days as we explore the local area and tomorrow head up in a small plane to experience Everest up close!

On Monday we fly down into Delhi in India, where we jump on a train on Tues morning to head to Agra to see the Taj Mahal in all it’s glory.

Back to Delhi on Weds for a couple of days before heading off for a 4 hour train ride down to Jaipur.

2 days here followed by a day and a half exploring the Ghats on the Ganges at Varanasi – apparently an incredible cultural experience.

Last Indian stop is Madurai to see the Meenakshi Amman temple before we jet off to Sri Lanka for a couple of days.

Then we end the trip with 3 days on a paradise Island in the Maldives!

Phew! Some trip!

Will be updating as we go and sharing photos where possible, (no idea of internet quality yet), particularly over on Instagram.

If you have any tips on any of the above places I’d love to hear them!

In the meantime I need to finish packing! :)

Do You Ever Feel Like an Imposter?

The word imposter means: ‘one who engages in deception under an assumed name or identity’.

Now that’s not many of us (thank God!) How many of us walk around with a clutch of different passports, or work for the secret services?

And yet most of us know what it feels like to be an imposter. We may not call ourselves by a different name, or walk around in disguise, but we’ve all felt that panicky, ‘what-am-I-doing-here?’ feeling.

It’s a feeling that comes with not living life on your own terms.

Do you ever feel you need to be a certain way to keep family members happy? What about friends or work colleagues?

It’s actually a scientific term. Imposter syndrome is defined by ‘a persistent fear of being exposed as a ‘fraud‘.’

Why do we sometimes feel like an imposter?

A lot of what we believe about the world, and what we believe about ourselves, comes from our environment. This is a double-edged sword. Our environment can give us a lot of positives. The problem is when some of those beliefs are negative.

These become self-limiting beliefs. It’s that little voice in your head that tells you, ‘you can’t do this’ or ‘you’re not good enough for this’.

Make It Happen Monday Episode 2 – How to Obliterate the Words ‘I’m Not Good Enough’

Self-limiting beliefs can strike in many forms. Perhaps you believe you don’t deserve a happy relationship? Or you’re not the sort of person who could be good at sports?

In business, perhaps you don’t believe you’re good enough to promote yourself as a public person? Perhaps you don’t feel you have what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur?

How do we be who we really want to be?

1) Keep a notebook / diary and jot down moments of envy.

The truth of who we really want to be sometimes reveals itself in moments of envy. Note any envious moments. What exactly about a certain person or situation makes you feel envious? What is it you feel you lack?

I might sometimes have a moment when I see someone who started around the same time as me with a wildly successful blog or social media account.

You’re not alone and it’s nothing to be ashamed of. Grab that moment and use it to set a fire under your backside! :)

2) Keep a note of any daydreams you have.

When we allow our minds to wander, we temporarily suspend all of our self-limiting beliefs. It’s in these moments of no constraints that the truth of what we really desire comes out.

I daydream about becoming a best selling author, about becoming a successful documentary maker in developing countries and being a size 10 and looking amazing in a white bikini!

3) Now, note down all the self-limiting beliefs you have.

If you’ve followed steps 1 and 2, this part will be easy. Whenever we feel envious of someone, we’ll rationalise it by using our self-limiting beliefs.

For example, I might see a hugely successful travel blog and feel a pang of envy and then begin to rationalise it with my own self limiting beliefs of – ‘OMG, look how young and beautiful the blogger is, doesn’t she look amazing in that white bikini, I’ll never be as successful because I’m past it now!’.

Crazy talk! She’s successful because she’s been posting consistently for the past few years while I’ve been sunning myself on the Phuket beaches!

You might meet someone who tells you about a webinar they hosted recently and they had hundreds of attendees. You feel a pang of envy, but then you rationalise it by thinking ‘this person is a natural showman, I’m not’ or they’re a natural presenter, or they’re better at marketing, whatever you think is holding you back.

Also, whenever we daydream, we have tendency to pull ourselves back to our current reality, again using our self-limiting beliefs. So if we’ve been daydreaming about holding a webinar which is a massive success, soon enough, there will be a voice in our heads saying something like ‘you can’t hold a successful webinar – you don’t have an engaging personality’ etc.

Look at your business and evaluate your self-limiting beliefs. What are your beliefs about your technical skills? About making videos? About starting a blog? About promoting yourself as a public figure? About writing an eBook? About hosting webinars?

4) Now change the question. Amend each belief to ‘But, if I could do this, what would I do?’

So, if you’re feeling envious of this webinar superstar for example, and the voice in your head is saying you don’t deserve success because you’re not like them, change it to, ‘But if I could do what they’re doing even without being a confident presenter yet, what would I do?’

It’s easier to act yourself into thinking than to think yourself into acting. In other words start doing what it is you want to do and soon enough you’ll be who you want to be!

The only way for me to become a best selling author is to write books! They may not be great books to start with, but it’s only by doing it we become better at it!

I recently went skiing and spent the first two days in perpetual snow plough with tears of fear icing up on my face!

By the end of the 6 day trip I was parallel skiing and whooping down a baby blue run!

The ‘Be, Do, Have’ model is all wrong. You can’t Be until you Do!

So change the belief by asking yourself, if you could do what they’re doing, what would you do? What qualities do they have that you could adopt? Are they incredibly friendly and generous? Are they the sort of person who makes people feel good when they are around them? What about them could you emulate?

Perhaps another self-limiting belief you have in your business is that you would suck at doing a webinar and that no one would attend.

Change that belief to, ‘But if I was webinar rock star, and hundreds of people would attend, what would I do / how would I go about it?’

Then, whatever you said you would do, DO IT. Act yourself into thinking!

5) Write your dying regrets.

Now, I’m not trying to be morose here, but asking yourself what you would regret not having done if you were going to pop off today is great way of really getting to the crux of how you want your life to be.

Sometimes we live aimlessly, letting life take us on it’s own path, without putting a steak in the ground and saying – No, I want to go this way!

It’s easy enough to do. We get busy, put other people first and all of a sudden 10 years has passed.

What do YOU want. Who do YOU want to be. What will make YOU happy.

I guarantee you won’t ever regret what you tried, only what you didn’t.

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Summary

Will the above exercise completely eradicate ‘imposter syndrome’? No. There will be moments when you will still feel like an imposter.

But the stories you tell yourself in your own head, are just that, stories.

Change your story.

It’s your life, and you deserve to have the starring role! Be the best YOU you can be.

Jo :)

How to Take the Easiest Next Steps – Make It Happen Monday Episode 95

How many times do you have a fabulous idea but then never actually see it through to fruition?

Don’t worry I’m not here to criticize, we’re all the same.

I can have hundreds of ideas a day around different things but most either just go away or get written in a big black book (a page on Evernote) for some later day that may never come and some get acted on if I follow a specific process.

I was listening to a great James Altucher podcast recently and he was discussing why people have so many ideas but take little action.

He came up with a great theory, here it is….

(Excuse the fact that I’m looking like a well groomed supermodel in this video!)

Watch Episode 95 Here

Please let me know in the comments below if you have any questions. I’m here to help!

Also, please share with your friends if you think this Make It Happen Monday episode has been useful and of course have an amazing week, live life on purpose and Make It Happen.

Thanks for watching!

Selamat Pagi

Good morning in Malayasian!

It’s Sunday again and I’m off Scuba Diving today off the Sipidan Islands, here in Borneo.

It’s been a frustrating week, as we arrived in Kota Kinabalu last Saturday and I’ve been sick most of the week with a chesty cough thing which has left me feeling a bit lackluster to say the least, and as someone who thrives off energy and feeling great, to have none in a new place I want to explore is not great!

Anyway, what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger right!

Am feeling lots better today and am looking forward to seeing turtles, sharks, rays and all sorts!

But I am super excited!

While laying by the pool feeling sorry for myself this week, I have done lots of research into the future of Facebook & Instagram and recorded what I hope is a very informative Make It Happen Monday video which I’ll release in the next couple of weeks.

I have also written out a very clear vision for the next 10 years of my life (note I said vision as opposed to goals, very important distinction, I’ll cover that in another post).

Lastly my husband to be & I decided upon the name and direction for our new ecommerce brand we’re launching in 2020!

It feels like the last 9 years online has all been practice for what’s to come next and I can’t wait to share it with my community!

That’s it from me.

Have an amazing Sunday, a super productive week ahead and don’t forget to take a moment today to check in yourself and ensure you’re heading in the right direction.

Sending big inspiring, motivational hugs your way!

Jo 🙂

Resistance is Futile

You know that moment when you’re asking yourself if you have in fact made the right decision.

Whether you have what it takes to see it through.

That moment when deep inside you’re sure this is what you want to do but you wonder why it feels so hard, so stressful, so scary, so beyond your capability…

That moment, according to Steven Pressfield author of ’The War of Art’ is called resistance.

We all get it.

It comes with such force that a large percentage of the population never get past it.

It’s the invisible energy that strips us of our dreams, that causes us to spend our lives half lived, never reaching our true potential, never becoming who we really want or wanted to be.

It takes its form in doubt, in fear, in the little voice that says ‘I can’t’ and in the eyes of the limiting beliefs of our family & friends who lovingly confirm our darkest thoughts.

Isn’t it a shame, that it holds such power over us.

If only we could get past it, round it, over it, under it, through it.

What’s on the other side??

The only way to know is to act.

To do it anyway, even if you think you can’t.

Because what if you could?

What if you have got what it takes? What if you can do it? What if you are who you thought you were all along!!!

Tell it.

Speak to it out loud and say – ‘Resistance is futile my friend’.

Because I CAN! 🙂

What’s on Your Bucket List?

Hey hey awesome action taker!

I want to ask you a question – ‘What’s on your bucket list?’

Do you even have a bucket list?

In fact what the heck is a bucket list??

The saying actually comes from an English term ‘to kick the bucket’ which is slang for ‘to die’ and it was then made into an international phenomenon with the film ‘The Bucket List’ with Morgan Freeman & Jack Nicholson. (Brilliant film and highly recommended).

I wrote my first bucket list (not actually knowing that’s what it was at the time), some 20 years ago. It was a huge list of all the things I would love to do in my life and included things like;

      Cruise along the Nile (done in 2009)
      Have a ride in a Hot Air Balloon Ride (Done in 2016 – Bagan – Myanmar)
      Live by the Beach (Very close – but not there yet)
      Swim with Dolphins (Done on multiple occasions, most recent in Philippines with my daughter)
      Learn to fly a helicopter (Took lessons in 2009 but a long way from qualified)
      Watch the Epcot fireworks with the man of my dreams (Done – 2017)
      Host a party on a yacht (maybe my 50th in 4 years!)
      Visit the 7 wonders of the world (Not even sure what counts as 7 wonders anymore as there are so many versions, but the wonders I have seen, have included – The Pyramids, Great Barrier Reef, Grand Canyon, The Great Wall of China, The Colosseum in Rome and so many more amazing sights and experiences. So much more to see!)
      Scuba dive off the Great Barrier Reef (Done 2012)
      Have a flat stomach (Yes when I was about 15! LOL!)

Since then my list has evolved into dreamboards, goal apps, a goal journal etc, but nothing really changes from the fact it’s all simply lists of stuff I’d love to do / experience in my life.

A few years ago after seeing an amazing picture online of Bora Bora, I added that to my bucket list, honestly believing it was a pretty far fetched dream (it was well before I started my online adventure).

Le Meridien Hotel – Bora Bora

Last summer, I’m happy to say, that goal, dream, bucket list item was realized.

Not only that, we sailed around the amazing island on a 46ft Catamaran.

Not only that, the love of my life and my partner for 10 years, proposed to me while there!

You can’t get much better than that right!!!

(Just click on any photo below to see full size in a slideshow)

So how did we manage to find ourselves sailing around Bora Bora on a 46ft Catamaran?

Well, as I’m sure you’re by now aware we live in Phuket and I have to admit we punch way above our weight as far as our friend circle goes!

So we just happen to know a fair few people who own nice boats, houses, islands that kind of thing. :)

Two of our best friends happen to be part of the Sunsail Yacht Ownership program – and one Sunday afternoon after a few beers on the beach we just invited ourselves along on their family holiday in the South Pacific.

Don’t get me wrong, it still wasn’t cheap, but a darn sight cheaper than trying to do it on our own.

So there were in fact 8 of us on the boat, which was a pretty tight squeeze, but thankfully we all got along famously (thanks in part to copious amounts of Hinano) and had a fabulous time.

What's On Your Bucket List? Bora Bora

Hinano!

I have to admit though, neither Rhett nor I are natural born sailors and found the trip over the open ocean from Raitea (where we picked up the boat) to Bora Bora quite challenging;

Once there though we went swimming with eagle rays & black tipped reef sharks, which was amazing, exhilarating and bloody scary all at the same time.

In fact there was a moment where it was just Rhett & I and he had counted 9 circling us. Next thing he saw were my fins frantically kicking me the hell out of there!

Hahaha! We know who he can count on in a dangerous situation!

What's On Your Bucket List? Bora Bora

At one point we were surrounded by about 8 or 9 pretty big black tipped reef sharks!

I was very excited to see a space station fly past the milky way several nights in a row due to the lack of light pollution out there in the pacific (unfortunately my camera couldn’t quite pick that up!)

What's On Your Bucket List? Bora Bora

The sky at night – I could see the milky way, a plethora of amazing stars & a space station fly past!

And a definite highlight was a night at Bloody Mary’s, a famous restaurant on the main island and frequented by many stars before us!

Just my name to add on eh!? 😉

But of course the main wonderful event was Rhett asking me to marry him on the front of the boat as the sun rose over the main island. So romantic!

An amazing trip at a beautiful location which will live in my memory forever.

So the question is….

What’s on Your Bucket List?

Whilst I’m not a huge fan of ‘The Secret’ as I think it promotes the idea that you simply have to close your eyes and visualise what you want and all your dreams will come true. I do believe in the strength of your thoughts and desires in the universe.

It’s amazing how over the years the things I have really focused on and have been passionate about have eventually come to fruition.

-Raising my daughter overseas
-Living in a hot country
-Marrying a gorgeous big Aussie guy
-Traveling the world
-Running my business remotely

I could go on and perhaps I will in another post, but I urge you to write a bucket list if you don’t have one already or go back to an old one and revive it.

Mark the things that are really important to you in different colors or give them deadlines, create a picture board, write it out in priority order, it doesn’t really matter.

Just as long as you look at it often, dream vividly about all the things you’d love to do and in turn direct your focus and attention to doing (operative word) what you need to do to move you closer to your dreams!

It’s amazing how the universe works with you once you really have your mind set on something!

Thanks for reading have an awesome week and Make It Happen!

Jo 🙂
 
 

P.S. If you’d love to visit Bora Bora and are unsure how to go about it, I found some awesome blog posts you might enjoy reading;

https://www.simplestofadventures.com/2018/02/19/a-complete-guide-to-bora-bora/

https://www.neverendingfootsteps.com/bora-bora-on-a-budget

https://theblondeabroad.com/staying-at-conrad-bora-bora-nui/

Create Your Own Reality

As I write this post I’m sitting in a taxi on the way to the JW Marriott hotel in Kuala Lumpur.

It’s 34 degrees and rain is threatening (it was a very bumpy ride in on the plane).

I’ve done this journey so often now that coming here on my own for a couple of days to renew my Thai visa is as comfortable as slipping into an old (and well loved) pair of shoes.

I know the airport, the taxi route, the city, my favourite place to eat (Johnny Rockers because they sing and dance!), where to get a good pedicure and massage and I wouldn’t hesitate to head down to Petaling Street after dark and do a bit of bargain hunting.

And yet, when I sat gawping at the larger than life Petronas Towers in the film Entrapment back in 1999, as Catherine Zeta Jones looked up at them in awe, Kuala Lumpur seemed like a far away, exotic, distant land and almost unachievable dream.

In fact when I was at school, I had a friend who’s Mum was English and Dad was Malaysian and back then I didn’t even really know what or where Malaysia was. It sounded like it was in another galaxy!

That was my reality back then. The town I lived in, its surrounding areas and the people I mixed with were my world and as far as I could see.

The opportunities I pursued, the goals and dreams I had were all limited by the reality I created for myself.

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It’s a state we all live in for so much of our life. What we can see, feel and are comfortable with us what life is. It’s our reality.

Adele has just been named the richest female celebrity in the UK. Do you think that was her reality 10 years ago?

Nick Vujicic (no arms, no legs, no problem) is married with kids. Do you think that was his reality when he was young and looking at all the so called ‘normal’ people.

I’m posting this article on a website which will reach people around the world in seconds. Whose reality was that 30 years ago? Certainly wasn’t mine!

My point is, what we see, feel or are comfortable with is the reality we have created for ourselves. We have to look beyond ourselves to realise there’s a great big world of unending opportunity out there that’s ours for the taking if we want it badly enough.

My reality has continued to grow and change over the years through the people I’ve met, the stories I’ve read, the risks I’ve taken, the uncomfortable moments I’ve put myself through and the constant and never ending desire to find a purpose bigger than myself.

My question to you is, What’s Your Reality? What self imposed limitations have you got stopping you from living your dreams? Who do you need to meet and mix with to expand your view of life?

If someone else has done something you want to do it means it can be done. So what’s stopping you?

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Don’t settle. Life’s too short.

Make a commitment today to create your own reality.

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10 Ways to Promote Yourself Without Feeling Like a Narcissist

Listen Here

Read Here

Is it primarily a female thing?

Is it mainly us girls who aren’t keen on promoting ourselves?

I guess some guys will empathize also, but I do think it’s one of the reasons so many women won’t fight for their seat at the table.

I mean think about, who are some of the greatest self promoters in the world?

Trump immediately comes top of mind, followed closely by Hitler and fully encompassed by the Kardashians.

Is it any wonder we feel self promotion is a negative thing! 😂

But if your business, brand, product or service is fronted by you, then you better believe you need to become pretty good at self promotion.

However, you can of course do it in such a way that you love it, your audience loves it and its total win win.

Here’s 10 ways to promote yourself and thoroughly enjoy the process!

1. Focus on your customer

Take the attention away from you and onto your customer by focusing on solving their problems. A business is all about providing a solution to a problem or enhancing someone else’s life in someway, so no matter what business you’re in, even if you’re a public figure, talk to and about your customers rather than yourself!

This way you’re promoting your knowledge, experience and product or service with our overtly promoting it.

2. Know your stuff

The more confident you feel about your knowledge of your business or niche, the more comfortable you’ll be blogging, podcasting, videoing or posting on social media about it.

There’s nothing worse than trying to be something you’re not (especially for a woman) so make sure you know what you’re talking about and can back yourself up.

3. Add immense value, be informative, be knowledgeable

Zig Ziglar once said “You will get all you want in life if you help enough other people get what they want.”

The fastest way to love what you do and to take the focus away from the ego is simply to work every day to add immense value to your potential audience.

If you’re focused daily on how many people ‘like’ ‘follow’ or ‘engage’ with you, you’re going to be consistently disappointed, especially in the early days of building your brand.

Ask yourself every single day, how can I add immense value to my marketplace today? Go out into the websophere with that attitude and the universe will talk back!

4. Engage with your audience

Don’t publish for publishings sake. Be sure to head back to your social media accounts and chat with your growing audience. Always remember you’re never too big too fail!

No matter how popular your brand might get, always be humble and helpful and recognize the audience that put you where you are.

5. Be inclusive

I’ve referenced a webinar I listened to years ago by the lovely Mari Smith so many times now. That’s because it had such a profound affect on me. It was called the ’10 Qualities of Social Media Superstars’.

One of the things she spoke about was being inclusive. These days with the sheer enormity of the internet reaching a global audience, we don’t need to worry about competition anymore. There is more than enough to go round.

Talk about your peers and what they can offer and they will at some point talk about you. What goes around comes around right?

But guess what, even if they don’t, you’ll have gone above and beyond to your community by giving them further solutions to their problems which will come back tenfold on you. Win Win!

6. Collaborate

Leading on from the above point, a great way to grow your profile, your business and your brand is to collaborate with experts & influencers in your niche.

This of course is easier said than done as they’re being approached left right & center by people who think they can give them a hand up to stardom.

The best advice I can give you is to ‘be so good they can’t ignore you’(Steve Martin said it first). Then give it time.

If you’re putting the work in, growing your audience, providing immense value, standing out from the crowd, all the while being inclusive, doing interviews, attending events etc, collaborations will form naturally.

7. Don’t be afraid to show vulnerability

This one is a tough one as deep down inside I think we’re all scared of showing our softer side, but we all have one! Author Brene Brown reckons vulnerability is one of our greatest fears and yet our greatest connector with others.

When I show vulnerability I get scared of being judged, of people thinking less of me etc. When in reality, the opposite is usually true. People relate to you and suddenly feel you too are human just like them.

Be careful though, there is a difference between vulnerability and down right self pity.

Don’t be holding pity parties all over the web, you won’t be thanked for it and it won’t grow your business!

8. Don’t be afraid to say I don’t know

To be honest this one is very similar to point 7, but I read this one somewhere recently (my memory escapes me) and it really resonated with me.

So many people will never say I don’t know for fear of being seen incompetent. But I’ve found if someone says – ‘hmmm, don’t know the answer to that one’ and then goes and finds out, it makes me love them just that little bit more!

9. Don’t talk, act

My other half is a doing machine.

By the time I’ve had an idea and discussed it with him he’s off and running. It’s inspiring to watch if not a little daunting at times.

But there’s nothing more attractive than a person who takes action.

If you want to attract people to your brand, don’t tell them what you are going to do (guilty), don’t announce what’s coming up (guilty), don’t talk, just do it!

10. Believe in yourself

Quite possibly the most important point, you have to believe in yourself and your business.

You are going to hit big brick walls, naysayers, critics, times of complete stasis no matter how hard you work.

The only thing that will keep you moving forward will be the self belief you have in yourself and what you’re doing.

You may have tried doubts about your abilities, you may have brief doubts about your effectiveness. These can be overcome. If however you doubt your intentions or your purpose, these will halt you in your tracks.

So make sure your why as strong as a ox, fuel your mind regularly and surround yourself with people who know you can! 😁

My 2 Hour a Day Content & Social Media Strategy

You will hear me talk a lot this year about content.

My entire goal over the next 12 – 24 months and beyond is to offer as much value as possible via my blog, podcasts, videos & social media accounts.

I’m pretty sure my future is in writing and the bigger my audience, the more people I can impact and hopefully demonstrate how to live the best life possible with ultimate freedom and choice!

But time is against me.

This is not our full time business, our daughter is at a stage where she needs a lot of support, exercise is now a part of my daily life, I travel – a LOT, and it’s challenging to fit it all in!

So here’s my 2 Hour a Day Content and Social Media Strategy in the hope that it helps you if you’re also on a time budget!

1. Core Content

In order to make posting on social media easier I am creating some consistent core content that can be used in different formats on the different outlets.

I wouldn’t say this is an absolute must to start out.

You could just as easily create an account on Instagram or Facebook and focus entirely on putting all your content just on one or both of those platforms and grow a huge audience without having any content anywhere else.

I would even recommend that strategy if you’re just starting out, but I’m trying to reach a broad audience across multiple platforms so to do that having some solid core content at the center of the strategy helps!

So my core content is;

1. Daily Blog (written)
2. Weekly Videos posted on YouTube (also posted on my blog)
3. Podcast 2 – 3 times / week (please note keeping this very simple. If I get time to interview someone I will, but many of the podcasts are just me and can be done while I’m out on a walk, killing two birds with one stone! – also posted on my blog)

My Daily Blogs take me 20 – 30 mins to write, sometimes a bit longer if it’s a bit of a meaty subject, but generally not too long, plus I can write them when I’m waiting for my daughter to come out from school, while I’m waiting at the dentist, while we’re on a journey somewhere etc.

My weekly videos, I tend to record 3 or 4 at a time on a Friday morning and because we have building works going on next door, I have precisely 1 hour maximum to do this!

My podcasts are generally voice renditions of my Daily Blogs so take maybe 5 – 10 mins per podcast. Easy peasy.

On average – 1 hour a day to create my core content

2. Social Media

YouTube

I upload my weekly Make It Happen Monday video and that’s about it! One of these days I will spend some time working out YouTube SEO etc, but for now, I’ll just keep uploading the videos 🙂

Facebook

I will go on and post some of my Daily Blogs in their entirety. A simple copy & paste job, takes less than a minute.

I add my Make It Happen Monday video & description every Monday

I have a lady in the Philippines who every week schedules – 1 – 2 quote images, a video segment, perhaps an old MIHM episode etc. She works about 2 hours a week for me (around $10 / week)

Instagram

Ok so Instagram is new to me and I’m just starting to get my head around how it all works.

I was researching other accounts recently and made a note of the type of content that might interest my potential audience;

In depth interesting information about building a lifestyle business
Family snaps
Book Covers of books I’ve read
Quotes
Videos
People who inspire me
Great travel pics
Podcast clips

So for now, I’ve decided to post twice a day, once being a travel image, the second being something from above – a quote, or business tip etc.

I also upload my MIHM episode to IGTV which highlights a clip on my feed and I’m about to start playing with stories this week, the goal being to get to posting one every couple of days (although when I’m traveling might be one a day!)

Summary

On average about 1 hour a day posting on social media.

So that’s the strategy I will be following over the coming months.

Some content cross fed between blog & platforms, some completely stand alone.

I think the days of using social media as a conduit to your website are gone. Social media now stands on it’s own and you have to get your head around who the audience is on each platform and talk to them accordingly.

If the above sounds too overwhelming, I urge you to pick one platform and focus all your energy & attention there. The chances are you’ll have more success and bigger growth by channeling all your energy into just one social media platform.

I have to be honest even though I’m posting on YT, FB & Insta, my attention right now is on Instagram.

Follow me here

That’s where the bulk of my energy is going.

I hope that helps!

Happy Audience Building!

Jo :)

5 Steps to Creating Engaging Content – Make It Happen Monday Episode 94

Wouldn’t it be awesome if we could just wake up in the morning and jump in front of the video camera or click record on a podcast or write a 1000 word blog post almost without thinking about it?

Wouldn’t it be fabulous if our creative juices were just flowing 24/7 and we never suffered from blank page syndrome or insecurity in front of the camera.

How is it that these social media influencers seem to be able to pump out so much great content all the time with seemingly little effort??

Watch todays episode to find out my strategy for creating a consistent stream of content without having to spend hours every day trying of think of the next valuable thing to say.

I hope this helps!

Jo 🙂

P.S. As I was recording I actually came up with 6 steps, but I didn’t want to scare you off!!!

Watch Episode 94 Here

Please let me know in the comments below if you have any questions. I’m here to help!

Also, please share with your friends if you think this Make It Happen Monday episode has been useful and of course have an amazing week, live life on purpose and Make It Happen.

Thanks for watching!

A beautiful start to a Sunday!

Shangri-La Kota Kinabalu

The view from our room

 
So here we are at the Shangri-La Hotel in Kota Kinabalu, Borneo.

A bit of an upmarket start to the entire trip which is nice.

6 days here and then onward to a B&B in the jungle at Sepilok, followed by another B&B close to where we’ll head out diving around the Sipadan Islands. (Hoping to catch a glimpse of a hammerhead or two!)

Unfortunately we are a bit of a way out from the centre of Kota Kinabalu, where all the mosques, markets & monuments are, but am sure we’ll venture into town for a day of exploration after a couple of days of enjoying the very pleasant surroundings here!

I don’t know about you, but I can only do a couple of days laying about not doing much before I get very itchy feet and need to get about seeing some of the country I’m in!

However, the whole rest & relax thing does allow me to read a lot which I love and so today I read ‘The War of Art’ by Steven Pressfield.

It’s only a short book, took about 90 minutes to read.

I loved the first 2 ‘books’ (the book is split into what he calls 3 books – in other words 3 sections, each one covering a slightly different theme).

The 3rd ‘book’ was a little too ‘divine’ for me, although I do agree that the universe works in mysterious ways.

I hate to say but the first book resonated the most with me only because I can relate to so much of it.

I’m knocking on 50’s door in a few short years and although I have lived and am living an amazing life, I have definitely fallen short on a few of my dreams and agree wholeheartedly that my own inner demons are to blame!

So how do we overcome our inner demons? Give the book a read and see what Steven Pressfield has to say about it.

In the meantime I’m off to read ‘Turning Pro’ his next non fiction creation. I’ll let you know how that goes.

Happy Sunday! 🙂

Why I Love to Travel

I’m so excited to be off on my travels again! 😁

Borneo for 12 days with my family, followed by my annual Sisters on Tour trip, this year heading to Nepal, India, Sri Lanka & the Maldives. ✈️

Sisters on Tour Trips to Date

Travelling has without doubt changed my life.

It’s broadened my mind, opened my heart and has changed me as a person.

I have always been a positive & inclusive person with a desire to have an impact on the world.

But when you travel to distant lands, meeting & getting to know different cultures & belief systems, your understanding & acceptance of the differences within the human race grows, while your fear of the unknown fades.

In a world where so much hatred is born from fear and low tolerance levels for cultural differences, the fact that it’s becoming easier & cheaper to travel than ever before can only be a great thing!

So first stop Kota Kinabalu in Borneo.

Updates to follow! 😁

Happy Fri Yey!

I honestly couldn’t think of anything useful or profound to say today, so I’ll simply say….
 

The beautiful Bang Wad Dam in Phuket. One of my regular morning walking routes 😁

Why you might not have a life purpose!

Type the words ‘life purpose’ into google and you’ll find the whole of page 1 search results come back with a multitude of ways to find and discover your life’s purpose.

Most of them seemingly advocating that you have one purpose in life and that you will be ‘unable to thrive’ unless you find it. (See footnote)

Well that’s me buggered then. 😞

I’ve been trying to figure out what my life’s purpose is since I was a teen and at 46 I still have no idea.

But….

I do know what my purpose is for the next few years right now.

I did know what my purpose was at age 34 when I had my daughter.

I knew what my purpose was age 17 studying for my A Levels.

Why should we only have one life’s purpose? Surely we have multiple purposes at different times in our life.

What’s Important to You Now?

I was listening to James Altucher not long ago who said why not live by themes rather than a single purpose as our priorities change over time.

Well he’s bang on.

There are some who come out of the womb knowing what they want to do and who they want to be, but there are many (probably the majority) who simply don’t who then spend years and years trying to define what they’re on this planet for!

A huge theme of my writings at this stage in my life is to give yourself a break and take the pressure off a bit.

There are no rules as to how you live your life except the rules you make for yourself.

You do not need to find your ‘life’s purpose’. Just know what’s meaningful and important to you right now and focus on that.

– In my teens I needed to pass exams and get boys to fancy me.

– In my 20’s I needed to feed myself, pay the rent, have enough money to party and get men to fancy me.

– In my 30’s I needed to feed myself and another, pay the mortgage and learn to become more responsible.

– In my 40’s I wanted to build businesses and achieve financial freedom.

– As I head into my 50’s I want to teach my daughter to be a strong and determined young woman, look after my health, help as many people as I can suck the juice out of life and change the world! (and if boys fancy me, that’s a bonus!)

Who knows what will come after that.

If you know exactly what it is you want to do, have always known and have always worked towards that single goal then fantastic!

But if you seem to be reinventing yourself every few years and changing direction to suit your current circumstance or world views then that’s also fantastic!

There is no right or wrong here, no shoulds or musts, only what you know in your heart.

So how do I know what’s right for me, right now Jo?

Not sure how to discover your purpose for right now, let alone your life?

Well you know those moments when your subconscious kicks in and you find yourself day dreaming?

What are you dreaming about? – if only I was 20 pounds lighter, if only I could write that book about xxxx, if only I could start a travel blog, if only I could build a successful business online!

You will know deep in your heart what your priorities are right now, so take the pressure off, stop ‘searching’ for who you think you should be and just start doing.

Action creates motivation, rarely the other way around.

Hope this helps!

Please feel free to ask me questions in the comments below!

Jo :)

P.S. Footnote – while looking at the page 1 results I did read a super good blog post about finding your purpose by Mark Manson author of “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F**k” – great book by the way. Read the post here.

 

How I’ve Mobilified Everything!

Listen Here

Read Here

In a few days, I’m off on my travels again!

12 days in Borneo, followed by Nepal, India, Sri Lanka & the Maldives!

Pretty darn sure I’m going to have lots of interesting stuff to share but, I don’t want to take my computer.

Particularly on the Nepal, India trip, we’ll be traveling light with one 7kg backpack each.

So, over the last few weeks I have been playing and testing and getting to a point that I can do everything I want to do on my phone!

So let’s start with;

Blog Posts On the Go

I use WordPress.org for my site.

So I downloaded the WordPress app for my phone and set about testing text, images, formatting etc.

Here’s what I discovered;

Post 1 – https://yourlifestylebusiness.com/testing-wordpress-mobile-app/

Post 2 – https://yourlifestylebusiness.com/testing-mobile-post/

Post 3 – https://yourlifestylebusiness.com/best-option-for-mobile-posting/

In summary;

1. Write content in Evernote or notes app first (on or offline)
2. Download ‘Inshot’ on your phone
3. Create a picture collage of some of your best shots, add text, stickers etc
4. Copy & paste (without formatting) to your WordPress app & add your collage photo. (For more details read Post 3)

This is the easiest & best way I found to create well formatted and easy to read posts on the go.

Podcasts On the Go

Use anchor.fm.

Undoubtedly the easiest way to create and publish podcasts I have come across!

Simply create an account, press record and away you go!

Seriously, you create an account, add your podcast image and description in podcast settings, along with your category and business info.

Then click the ‘+’ button at the bottom of the screen, add a new episode and press record.

How I’ve Mobilified Everything!

Press record and away you go!

You can use the phone as you would a phone with the mic up by your mouth or use a little lapel mic (I use a sennheiser lapel mike for iPhones). The mic gives a slightly better sound by minimizing background noise.

If you want an intro & outro. Simply record what you want to say and then use the ‘add background’ music option and the save that short recording.

Next time you record an episode, you simply click the ‘+’ and add your intro and outro from the library.

Then you add your description and click publish!

How I’ve Mobilified Everything!

Click Publish and you’re live to the world! (Or about 36 people right now in my case)

All of a sudden you’re on iTunes, Spreaker, Google, Spotify, Stitcher and loads more!

It doesn’t get any easier than that. 🙂

Video On the Go

I have to admit I have recorded, edited & prepared my Make It Happen Monday videos for the next few weeks, mainly because the YouTube mobile functionality is so poor.

I can’t find a way to add my end screen, or a thumbnail image for the video on my phone alone, so I have prepared my weekly videos.

But, I will want to record and upload lots of interesting videos I’m sure to FB & Instagram along the way and for this I’m using a very cool app called ‘Kinemaster’.

Please note I tried several others before I found Kinemaster and without doubt this one is the best.

You can split a clip, trim it, add layers, images, text, logos etc. It’s a bit fiddly but super easy to use and then you can save it on your phone or upload directly to Instagram etc.

Highly recommended as is Justin Brown – Primal Video – who has loads of tutorials on how to use it for iPhone & Android.

Photos On the Go

Well we’re all doing this every day anyway and I will do a separate post on the apps I’m playing with to liven up my Instagram feed, but in the meantime I must recommend a guy called Emil Pakarklis.

He’s got a range of videos & tutorials showing you how to take amazing photos with your iPhone.

Check out my post all about him here – https://yourlifestylebusiness.com/amazing-tips-for-taking-iphone-photos/

Make sure to follow my Instagram account for all my best travel content – @jobarnesonline

Hope this helps and I’ll see from somewhere in this amazing world!

Jo 🙂

Stop ‘Tweaking’

You know that day when you can’t stop fiddling with your website to make the colors better or the logo stand out.

Or the opening paragraph to that blog post you’ve been working on for a week.

Or the sales page for your video course, or the image for your FB page…

You name it, there are a million things that stop us from actually ‘doing’ and one of them is ‘tweaking’.

Stop it!

I hate saying this, because it sounds like I’m condoning poor effort, but if it means you’ll start taking action, good enough is good enough.

You will improve stuff as you go, but the most important thing is to be going.

I have been procrastinating so much on my podcast over the last few weeks.

A million excuses as to why I can’t get it moving and then this morning I plugged my lapel mic into my phone, opened the app and started speaking.

Boom! I have 3 new episodes to publish.

Become a doer.

Not a thinker, not a talker, not a tweaker.

A doer! 🙂

Just Get Published – Make It Happen Monday Episode 93

9 years ago this month I had the opportunity to interview Jeff Walker, creator of the Product Launch Formula at an event in San Diego.

He was incredibly gracious as I asked him, ‘for all the beginners out there building a business online, what’s the one piece of advice you would give them to get started and get their business off the ground’?

Some 9 years later a member of my Build a Business group asked me how to increase traffic to his website. My answer was the same as Jeff’s all these years later.

If you want to start and grow a lifestyle business that gives you the freedom to work from, anywhere in the world, the answer my friend, the starting point, middle point & end point is in todays episode!

Don’t buy another program, don’t look for another shortcut.

This is it!

Watch and make it happen!

Have a fab week.

Jo :)

Watch Episode 93 Here

Please let me know in the comments below if you have any questions. I’m here to help!

Also, please share with your friends if you think this Make It Happen Monday episode has been useful and of course have an amazing week, live life on purpose and Make It Happen.

Thanks for watching!

Happy Mothers Day

Happy Mothers Day lovely ladies!

It’s Mothers Day in the UK, but I extend my greeting to you wherever you are in the world!

I don’t believe in all the commercialism & all that hype, but I do think it’s a nice reminder for our kids to say ‘Hey Thanks Mum!’ to us and for us to say the same to our Mums.

Have a lovely day whatever you’re doing :)
 

Happy Mothers Day

Mum & Me – 2017

10 Things I Love About Phuket

We started coming to Phuket back in 2010 when we first left the UK.

The first trip was just a two week holiday on route to Australia.

It rained the entire time but I absolutely fell in love with the place.

The climate was amazing, the people so friendly with nothing being too much trouble, the food was to die for and the beaches, islands & sunsets were quite possibly the most beautiful I had ever seen!

Safe to say I was a big fan.

So at the end of 2011 we came back for a while, then a bit longer in 2012, bit longer 2013 etc etc. Until at the beginning of 2016 we decided to settle here until my daughter finished her IGCSE’s.

I ashamedly haven’t written much about the place since I have been here but I hope to change that over the coming months with a few Thai influenced posts sharing my experiences of this beautiful country.

For now here are the Top 10 Things I Love About Phuket;

1. Obvious one, but clearly the weather. A consistent 28 – 32 degrees year round, we have two seasons. Hot Season & Wet Season. Hot Season runs from around mid November through to mid April and Wet Season from mid April to mid November.

The best time to visit for the clearest waters and most beautiful sunsets is without doubt February / March – however it’s also the hottest time of the year. So for a slightly more temperate climate but still lovely to swim and visit the beaches – November / December (although it might still rain at night and sometime thorough the day if rainy season is a bit late).

10 Things I Love About Phuket

A beautiful sunrise

2. The food! OMG. I love Thai food. Chicken & cashew nuts, vegetable fried rice, panang curry, massaman curry, fish in 3 flavor sauce. Wow the food here is ah-maz-ing. Probably covered in MSG and clearly plenty of sugar (which may be why I still have a weight problem – really Jo? You think???). But so so tasty!

10 Things I Love About Phuket

Chicken & Cashew Nuts

3. The people. It’s called the land of smiles, because Thai people smile all the time. Don’t be fooled by the fact it’s one of the fastest growing economies in Asia, there are still plenty of people who live well below the breadline here and yet they’d give you their last bowl of rice if they thought you needed it.

They have changed a bit over the years. The western culture has seeped in via tourism and social media and with it comes an element of greed that wasn’t evident before, a decline in friendliness & happiness and a general suspicion of farangs (foreigners), but I’ve always found if you’re smiley and nice to them they will be smiley and nice right back atcha! 🙂

10 Things I Love About Phuket

A local entrepreneur!

4. The beaches! I love the beaches here mainly because the water is so warm. Sometimes wading into the Andaman sea is like walking into a cool bath. Also at certain times of the year, the water is as crystal clear as an aquarium and you can see right to the bottom.

One of my favorite pastimes is wading out to see with a bottle of chang and sitting in the warm water with a nice cool beer. Oh yeeeeaaaaahhhh.

10 Things I Love About Phuket

Enjoying the ocean! :)

5. Activities. Because of the weather there is so much more to do outside! Scuba diving, snorkeling, taking a long boat to the floating restaurants, zip lining, hiking, paddle boarding, visiting the elephant sanctuary, fireshows. Even though there are no live bands, west end shows, or a plethora of vegan restaurants, if you’re an outdoors type and love the ocean then this is the place for you!

10 Things I Love About Phuket

Awesome fire show!

6. Talking about live bands and shows, we’re only an hour away from the thriving metropolis of Bangkok! An hour from Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Vietnam, Cambodia, only 3 hours from Manila, Indonesia, Bangladesh. We are right in the centre of South East Asia and can fly pretty much anywhere and everywhere in the world without too much difficulty.

7. Beautiful temples, a big Buddha and the most amazing feeling of love and acceptance because of the main ‘religion’ Buddhism. Quite possibly one of the most peaceful belief systems in the world today, you can feel it in the culture over here and the way the people feel about their King. When we go to the cinema, before every film we have to stand while they play the Kings Anthem. At 8am every morning no matter where you are or what you’re doing (other than if you’re driving) if you hear the Kings Anthem over the radio you have to stop and stand still in respect.

It’s slowly dissipating over time, but the respect kids have for their elders, for each other, for possessions etc, is a beautiful thing to see and long may it last.

10 Things I Love About Phuket

Local Vegetarian Festival

8. The hotels, bars & restaurants on the beaches. Sometimes I feel like we’re on holiday every other weekend. We can simply go to a nice little hotel on one of the beaches for a couple of nights, half an hour down the road from where we live and dine in the little shacks, sunbathe on the beach and watch the sunset with a cool beer in hand before walking barefoot back to our room for the night. We don’t have to fly anywhere for a beautiful and relaxing restful time away.

10 Things I Love About Phuket

Relaxing beach time :)

9. I have to be honest and say I am enjoying the ex-pat lifestyle. I’ve made a great group of friends hailing from New Zealand, Australia, Philippines, America, UK, Germany, Russia, Malaysia, Singapore, Korea, you name it I probably know someone from there.

I do a little daily radio show with a good friend of mine and have fully ensconced myself into the community. In fact as soon as I finish this post I’m off to a lunch at a friends house with a big group of ladies. The sun is shining, the weather is glorious and I’m hungry!

10 Things I Love About Phuket

A day out on the beach!

10. Finally I have to say the fact that my 12 year old will grow up blind to religion or color. When she’s older she won’t see whether someone is Muslim or Catholic or Christian or Buddhist. She won’t see whether they’re white, black, brown or blue with yellow spots. She has a big group of friends from school who are every race & religion and she loves them for who they are. This is how she will grow up and view the world and I believe that is the best gift I could have given her.

10 Things I Love About Phuket

Banya Literacy Center, where we regularly donate clothes / toys.

The act of traveling itself broadens the mind beyond recognition. The people, the cultures, the surroundings, the varying levels of living standards. I’ve always been an open minded person, but since traveling I have become more tolerant, more understanding, less fearful of that and those I don’t fully understand.

To travel is to see the world as it truly is and not just how it’s perceived to us in the media or on facebook.

I highly recommend travel itself and of course Phuket as a place to holiday, to explore and live in. We won’t stay here forever, but for right now this is home and I feel like the luckiest woman on the planet.

I hope one day to see you here.

Jo 🙂

Surround Yourself With People Who Support Your Dreams

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Read Here

Do you ever feel like you’re forging ahead alone?

That you have big goals and dreams that no-one else seems to understand?

Even worse, your friends and perhaps family are even discouraging you. Telling you your ideas will never work!

Many years ago when I ventured into my very first business, I had two very close friends who spent weeks giving me all the reasons it wouldn’t and couldn’t work.

They blasted the business model itself, my resources, my skill base, anything and everything to stop me from taking the leap.

I’m unsure why they were so passionately against it, but I guarantee it was all to do with their own limiting beliefs.

Thankfully I was hell bent on my goal and had a very supportive father (may he rest in piece, miss you Dad) and so I went ahead regardless and haven’t looked back since.

Some years later I shared my goals of moving abroad and traveling the world with someone very close to me who basically laughed at me and told me to ‘live in the real world’

When you begin to open your mind to the possibilities of what you can achieve and who you can become you will face resistance.

That resistance will come from their fear and their own insecurities.

Do NOT listen.

You can achieve what it is you want to.

You can do it. You do have the skills, you do have the resources and you can have the iron clad self belief to push you forward.

Utilize networking groups online, use meetup.com to find people in your local area, join a course that comes with a mastermind group. Whatever it takes to get around people who are either living the life you want to or who are chasing the same dream.

Surround yourself with people who will push, pull and walk forward with you towards your dreams.

Have an amazing day.

Jo :)

What’s Your One Thing?

Do you ever have so much to do, you just don’t know where to start?

Has that ever led to you actually not starting at all?

Guilty as charged sir!

I know precisely what you mean.

There have been days I’m ashamed to admit, where I have looked at my list of ‘To Do’s’ and have been so overwhelmed I just shut it down and went and did something completely different for the day.

You see sometimes too many choices can lead to total procrastination.

Have you ever noticed these days that choosing a restaurant to eat with friends can be the most frustrating thing in the world (especially if doing so by text);

Do you fancy pizza, Chinese, Indian or Thai?

I don’t mind which one do you fancy?

I’m easy which one is good for you?

How about Chinese then? Or Indian? Or pizza? I like them all……

Aaaaghhhh!

Let’s just stay in with a sandwich!

We are abundant with choice in the world we live in today and there may be a deeper argument that this might be one of the reasons there is so much dissatisfaction in the modern western world but that’s another blog post.

For now, what we want to do is increase our productivity and get things done so how do we do that?

How to Limit Your Choices for Increased Productivity

Gary Keller author of ‘The One Thing’ advocates focusing on only one thing at a time.

This is actually easier than you initially think when looking through the lists of things you want to do. (If you’re anything like me your lists are loooonnng).

The good news is that his ‘one thing’ is one thing in multiple areas making it in fact multiple ‘one things’, but in all the different categories of your life.

So what’s your priority in business, finance, health, family, personal development etc.

Don’t go crazy though and create more segments just because you think you want to fit more in!

For example my priorities this year are Health, Family, Business, Mission & Personal Development;

In each category in the past I have had a ridiculous amount of things I wanted to do / goals I wanted to achieve, for example, with health last year I was doing yoga, strength training, pilates, zumba and silks.

I wanted to be the best at all of them, eventually overwhelming myself and not becoming brilliant in any of them.

In business before I took a break, I was trying to increase my email list, build my audience, master social media, create and sell products, build an ecommerce business, be an affiliate marketer, write a blog, run a podcast, create videos etc, etc, etc.

This year (meaning my 46th year), my ‘one things’ are;

Health – Master Yoga. I want to master many yoga poses, and seriously increase my flexibility & strength.

Family – Make playing games as a family a nightly occurrence especially outside (that ones particularly for my instagram addicted daughter).

Business – Build my audience by publishing quality content regularly via blog posts & a podcast – I’ll go into my strategy for this more in another post.

Mission – Raise 100,000 Baht (around $3k) for Ride 4 Kids (I’m doing a 700km bike ride for a local charity in June next year).

Personal Development – Read or consume (I’m big into audio) a book a week.

Yes I’d also love to learn how to play the piano, learn how to day trade, start my new ecommerce business, go on mission trips to NGO’s in Africa & India etc.

There’s loads of other stuff I want to do, and it will all come in time, but we only have so many hours in the day and we have to ‘choose’ the most important things to move us closer to our goals right now.

NB: One thing to note is that these ‘one things’ are your main priorities. Not everything you’re going to do.

You will naturally fit other things in around your one things, but these are your default main goals which will help focus your mind.

Now It’s Your Turn

1. Identify the most important things you want to achieve in the various areas of your life. (Add the rest to a little black book of wishes & desires! I use Wunderlist and create braindumps of everything I want to do)

2. Whittle those lists down to your ‘one things’ in each category of your life.

Then get to work FOCUSING on your one things.

That’s it.

Believe me just removing the clutter of multiple goals clears the head and makes it so much easier to know what it is you need to do each day, which leads to increased productivity.

The key to success however, as always, is – action!

I hope this spurs you into action.

Have a great week.

Jo :)

Don’t Be Lonely

Running an online business can be super lonely.

Traveling the world although amazing can also be quite lonely.

You work behind your computer on your own, you live a transient lifestyle moving from place to place and although you probably know a lot of people online, it doesn’t quite make up for the physical interaction of some good company.

In the last couple of years we’ve really made our base here in Phuket and last year I made a huge effort to get out into the community and make friends.

I say huge effort because it’s so easy to get caught up behind your computer and not get out and about and meet people.

It didn’t take long before I was part of a large and welcoming community of expats, some of whom have undoubtedly become lifelong friends.

No matter where I go now, I will make the effort quickly to network and meet people wherever I can.

It’s so easy these days to utilize platforms such as meetup.com, Internations, & Facebook Local to meet and socialize with like minded individuals wherever you are in the world.

Just remember if you are shy there are ten other people just as shy as you are and all it takes is a hello to break the ice.

🙂

My Top 5 Steps for Building a Business Online

I’m giving a presentation at my daughters school this afternoon.

It’s for the Year 12’s who are in their first year of IB and will be heading off to Uni or to get jobs within the next 2 years.

My title & blurb is;

Building a Business Online

Wouldn’t it be awesome if, while at college or Uni (or on a gap year), you could build an online business which not only funds your daily living but sets you up for when you get out into the working world? Perhaps you need a side income while you pursue a sport or hobby you love. Successful entrepreneur Jo Barnes shares her 5 steps for building an online lifestyle business you can start & grow from anywhere in the world whether that be your dorm room or a beach in Miami!

I’m super nervous as I’m not used to speaking in public and much prefer the privacy of a quiet room with my camera phone.

But hey, it’s always good to move out of your comfort zone!

But while putting together my little 30 min presentation (which I shall share below), I suddenly thought, is the model I’m teaching relevant for the youngsters?

What if there’s a new social media platform or way of building an online business that I haven’t discovered yet?

What if I’m just not down with the kids anymore (which by the way I’m told is the absolutely the case by my 12 year old daughter).

So I set about looking up what the top Instagram & youtube influencers were doing these days.

My daughter seems to spend her time on both these platforms so I must be looking in the right place!

I’m happy to say that many of them are indeed still blogging or started from a blog and grew into youtube / instagram, or started on instagram / youtube and grew into a blog or have simply built up a following on any or all of these sites.

Either way their main goal is to build an audience around a subject – beauty, travel, food, health etc and then monetize their brand / personality via the ways I detail in my presentation below.

Please note there are a multitude of ways to create multiple streams of income that give you more freedom in your life. Check out my podcast episode which discusses 10 Ways to Start Working From Home Today!

But the model I’m teaching today has got to be the best business model in the world because you get to spend all day everyday talking about stuff you love!

My Top 5 Steps for Building a Business Online

1. What’s your passion? What would you be happy to talk about 24/7? what’s happening in that space right now? How you can create your unique edge to it?

Remember, there may be few unique messages these days but you are a unique messenger!

2. Who’s your target market? What do they want & need? What’s your message?

3. Choose your platform What are you most comfortable doing? Do you love to get in front of a video camera – become a YouTuber! Perhaps you prefer audio – do podcasting, love writing? Start blogging / writing books etc.

Ok so steps 1, 2 & 3 can be thought about and decided on in a day, but Step 4 is the step that trips everyone up.

This is the part that depending on your niche, your message and your efforts could take 3 months, 6 months, 12 months, 3 years, 10 years etc.

4. Build an audience!

I’ve always likened starting an online business to opening a shop. If you open your store on a back street of a small town and tell no-one you exist, the likelihood of growing that store is pretty tough.

But if you head off into the main street with free samples of your products and billboards and a megaphone and a way for people to quickly & easily refer you to friends etc, then no matter where you’re located, if you’re good enough, it won’t be long before they’re queuing out the door!

Social Media, other blogs, podcasts, video channels etc are the main street!

If you become a prolific content creator and collaborator, you can build your profile & brand far quicker than simply sitting in your store hoping they will come.

You will find that I talk a lot about content creation & building an audience on this blog as it’s the biggest piece of the puzzle.

Here’s some posts to get you started;

https://yourlifestylebusiness.com/mihm56-create-multiple-pieces-of-content-in-one-sitting/

https://yourlifestylebusiness.com/mihm20-prolific-content-creator/

https://yourlifestylebusiness.com/48-amazing-content-ideas/

5. Create multiple income streams – product endorsement, affiliations, sponsorship, advertising, online digital products, saas, apps, coaching, consulting, services, physical products etc

Facing a Group of 16 / 17 Year Olds

Update – I did the presentation – wow was I nervous presenting to 16 / 17 year olds, but they were very gracious and listened / took part willingly.

What a great experience and if I have impacted just one student, my day has been a rip roaring success!

I do hope the presentation helps you with your business.

Jo :)

Act Now, Improve Later – Make It Happen Monday Episode 92

My lovely daughter is fab at singing. She’s hugely musically talented, playing the trumpet to a high standard and now learning the piano.

I’ve been encouraging her for a long time to start a YouTube channel and make videos of her singing.

Build an audience over the next few years hun, I say to her. It will serve you well in the future.

Finally last week after weeks of nagging she started an Instagram account specifically for her singing and has posted a couple of videos.

They’re not amazing, but the more she does the better she’ll get.

The fact is, she’s started and it’s only by getting out there and taking action can she improve.

Todays video is all about Acting Now & Improving Later.

If you’re holding back in any area of your life because you’re waiting for perfection you’ll be waiting forever!

Get going NOW, Today and improve as you go.

Hope this weeks video helps…..

Watch Episode 92 Here

Please let me know in the comments below if you have any questions. I’m here to help!

Also, please share with your friends if you think this Make It Happen Monday episode has been useful and of course have an amazing week, live life on purpose and Make It Happen.

Thanks for watching!

It will always take longer than you think

It does not matter what I plan, what I do or how I do it, everything always takes longer than I think it will.

I plan to take 30 mins to edit a video, it takes an hour.

I plan to go for a quick 20 min coffee with a friend, it takes an hour.

I plan an hour to write a blog post, it takes two!

Now either I’m just super slow at stuff, or you can totally resonate with me!

I haven’t got a solution I’m afraid, simply venting that I haven’t come close to achieving my goals this week as everything seems to have taken so much longer than planned!

Here is a little tip for you though.

Always plan the most important stuff first so you only get behind on the things that aren’t life and death if they fall into the next week.

For example for me, I have to do my Daily Blogs & my weekly Make It Happen Monday.

If I don’t quite manage to schedule all my social media posts or record podcasts or make further videos etc, it’s all good as long as I have this week all done and ready to go out.

So make sure you pick the most important tasks. Get them done and then you can start working on other tasks which help grow your business and / or make your life a bit easier!

I hope you’ve had a productive week!

Have an amazing week ahead!

Jo 🙂

Meeting Mark Zuckerburg on the Great Wall of China

On the 21st March 2016 (3 years ago Thursday!), I was on my first of many ‘Sisters on Tour’ trips with (clue is in the title), my sister.

We were doing a City tour including Bangkok, Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai, Tokyo & Kuala Lumpur.

On this particular day we were visiting one of the great wonders of the world, the Great Wall of China which is indeed great!

But you can imagine my surprise when all of a sudden a group of youngsters came breezing passed me as I’m attempting to climb these huge stairs towards Watch Tower One.

Please note the surprise wasn’t that a group of youngsters breezed passed me, that’s quite believable given the fact I was super unfit, red faced and panting so hard I looked like I was about to have a heart attack!

No no, the surprise was that the main youngster in the middle of the group was Mark Zuckerburg. 😳

Yes THE Mark Zuckerburg, creator of Facebook Mark Zuckerburg.

In my surprise I turned to myself sister and rather loudly shouted, ‘Nat’! (My sisters name is Natalie). ‘It’s Mark Zuckerburg’!

She looked up and shouted back even louder ‘Are you sure, it looks like Chris Martin!’ At which Mark turned to us laughing and I was able to 100% confirm his identity.

Well, my goal that day had been to make it up to Watch Tower One and on seeing Mark & his entourage almost jogging up the stairs I took chase!

All the way up I was thinking, ‘oh my gosh, Mark Zuckerburg’, ‘what am I going to say to him’, (‘how many more steps’), ‘shall I just approach and say hey Mark, thanks for Facebook’ (‘am I going to make it to the top?’) or ‘hey Mark, you’re the source of my business’, (why can’t I breathe anymore) ‘or simply ‘hey buddy nice to meet you’, (I don’t care if it’s the queen of England up there, I can’t go another step!). 🥵

Finally I made it puffing & panting to the top and thankfully MZ was long gone into an area that said ‘no entry’.

I say thankfully as I really did look like I needed an air ambulance which frankly was quite embarrassing, so I sat down for a few minutes to recover and gain my composure.

When I got my breath back I had a little shifty about but all I could see was bushes, no track and nowhere to go! 🧐

I had no idea where they could have gone and presumed that somehow they had a secret invisible Zuckmobile hidden up beyond the Great Wall of china that whisked him away to a secret location.

However to my surprise as I turned to head back down the steps, he reappeared right beside me!

But instead of leaning over to shake his hand and say Hi. I stood, rooted to the spot completely speechless. 😳

I’m not sure if it was the altitude mixed with my still 150bpm heart rate which led to one of the most unlikely scenarios known to man – me speechless, but I couldn’t find a single word.

Instead I lifted my camera and took a quick shot as he walked past.

Then I believe I said something fairly banal to his entourage and then finally fired up my Periscope app to get some video footage!

Please find below a heavily chopped and edited version of what was originally a 30 minute Periscope which was mainly me puffing and panting as I chased Mark down and up the Great Wall of China.

I have cut out the part where I was given CPR (only joking). 😂

Before you go to watch the video though, can I just say, the Great Wall of China with or without Mark Zuckerburg is a site to behold and well worth a visit if you ever get the chance.

One of the highlights is the trip back down, where apparently Mark had gine down about half an hour before us!

My 4 Favourite Ways to Generate an Income While Traveling

My goal today was to write a post giving you a list of the best ways to generate an income while traveling around the world.

As I researched my idea on the web I came across an excellent blog post written by a chap called Ryan Robinson, entitled – 101 Best Side Business Ideas to Start While Working Full-Time (in 2018).

His site is all about ‘The Side Hustle’, in other words starting your business on the side while still at your full time job.

So rather than just regurgitate what’s already out there I’m going to recommend you read his post, but before you go….

His post lists pretty much anything and everything you can do to work from home either online or offline.

In fact while reading his post it occurred to me, how lucky are we to be living at a time when we have so many opportunities to start businesses or generate multiple streams of income without having to leave our front rooms!

However, I of course massively advocate you leaving your front room, really grabbing the bull by the horns and getting out to see the world!

So, whilst I urge you to have a read of Ryans post as he actually highlights 133 fantastic ideas, here are my summarized favourite ways for you to build a business that fully supports your traveling lifestyle!

1. Influencer Marketing

Blogging, podcasting, youtubing, social media marketing. You name it, this business model is all about you picking a subject you’re super interested in / passionate about and becoming an expert in that niche.

Whether that be;

Travel
Fitness
Cooking
Investing
Business
Yoga
Writing
Fishing
Beauty
Fashion
Pets etc, etc.

Once you’ve built an audience via your platform of choice – writing, audio, video etc, then you’re in a position to monetize your business via product endorsements, affiliate marketing, online products, sponsorship, advertising, ecommerce, book sales, speaking engagements, collaborations, etc.

See My Top 5 Steps for Building a Business Online for more details on this model.

2. Freelancing

This is an opportunity for you to offer your expertise to clients looking to outsource specific tasks, projects or jobs, via sites such as;

Upwork.com
Freelancer.com
Peopleperhour.com
Fiverr.com
Guru.com

So if you’re a great writer, PPC specialist, web developer / designer, graphic designer, virtual assistant, social media manager, WordPress expert etc, you can bid for jobs that meet your criteria.

This is a great way for you to advertise your services without having your own audience as you’re leveraging the audiences of the sites listed above.

3. Ecommerce

Oh how I love this model.

These days you don’t even need to see, touch or feel a product to sell it, however as you’re traveling perhaps you’ll get inspiration for something hugely unique along the way!

You have a few options here, you can sell on Amazon, eBay, Etsy, or your own website.

Without doubt the best, most fulfilling and more long term option is your own site, but it will take work to build the audience up, very much like influencer marketing.

In fact you can tie Influencer Marketing with Ecommerce and sell products from your blog etc, but you can also build a specific brand here without using you as a public figure.

With Amazon, Ebay & Etsy, you can leverage their audiences but make no mistake about it, competition is heavy, so don’t think for one second you can slap up a product and it will take off with no work.

You might be one of the lucky ones (and the more unique your product in a busy marketplace the luckier you will probably be), but more often than not, you’ll have to work just as hard to ensure the eyeballs land and convert on your product.

Listen in to my interview with Ecommerce expert Allen Burt here as he walks through how to start and grow your own ecommerce business.

4. Fun & Creative Opportunities

If you’re a fan of diversifying and just trying out all sorts of online opportunities then you can look at;

Print on DemandMerch by Amazon, Cafepress, Printify, Zazzle, Teespring, Redbubble etc

In a nutshell, the brands above (and many more) provide all sorts of different physical products for you to sell using your own design.

You create your own design and add it to t-shirts, mugs, duvet covers, shoes, shower curtains, journals, you name it.

You advertise the product with your design, someone buys it, it’s sent direct from the site with your design and you get the money.

I’ve simplified it, but here’s a great blog post that tells you more – https://www.shopify.com/blog/print-on-demand

Stock Photography – While you’re traveling, take amazing photos and sell them online to stock photo sites like istock.com, 123rf.com etc.

Ebook Author – Akin to step 1 I guess, but slightly different in that you’re literally writing books and selling them on the Amazon Kindle store.

Here’s how Steve Scott (interviewed by James Altucher) is making $40k / month doing just that – https://jamesaltucher.com/2018/02/steve-scott-how-to-make-40k-a-month-writing-from-your-couch/

Build an Alexa Skill – A bit like an app for the phone, a skill is for Alexa and you can sell your skill on, get rewarded for engagement or add in skill purchases. See more here – https://developer.amazon.com/alexa-skills-kit/rewards

There are so many opportunities these days for generating an income from home or while traveling, your issue isn’t going to be what to do, it will be what not to do!

So start with what you’re good at and what you enjoy doing and take it from there.

The most important thing is to take action and get going!

Let me know your next step in the comments below.

Hope it helps,

Jo :)

 

When Doubt Seeps In

I had a huge moment of doubt this morning. 😔

My partner thinks I look at other people’s content too much, that I need to find my own voice and not try to be like others.

‘I can only be my own voice honey, I tell him. It’s impossible for me to be anyone else’ (that’s true).

I’m looking of course for inspiration. And it works.

I’m writing this post because I’ve just read a post on James Altuchers blog – https://jamesaltucher.com/blog/33-unusual-tips-become-better-writer/

‘Point J – Be Honest’ struck me today and this post is the result.

But before that I was looking at Marie Forleo, Pat Flynn, Gary Vaynerchuk and lamenting that my site isn’t as beautiful, well laid out, full of such valuable content.

Sometimes looking for inspiration works, sometimes it doesn’t. Sometimes it backfires and doubt seeps in.

“I’m not as good, I won’t make it. No one will read my stuff. I can’t get engagement. I’m too late. Why am I doing all this anyway?”

We all have similar doubts and fears no matter what stage of the journey we’re on.

For my part, I don’t need to work anymore. I could take the next year or 3 off and focus on my health and my family and read and sunbathe and enjoy life! 🏝

My partner asks me, why are you putting yourself through all of this if you don’t have to?

I sit back to ruminate on his question but I instinctively know the answer.

Because I’m playing the long game.

I want to be a writer, a speaker, a documentary maker. I want to positively influence thousands (if not hundreds of thousands) of entrepreneurs to positively impact the world with their ideas & businesses. I have a very specific not for profit idea, I want to become an angel investor and I have a huge philanthropic goal.

Wrap all that up in the fact that I want to inspire my daughter to be whoever it is she wants to be in this world.

Knowing my why helps the doubt to wash over me like a brief rain shower and I get back to creating & publishing with the knowledge that consistency wins the day.

Don’t let your doubts rule your day.

Acknowledge, accept and move on.

As Marie Forleo so eloquently puts it – ‘The world needs that special gift only you have!’ 🥰

I can’t believe I just unsubscribed from Tony Robbins email list!

I decided last week that I’m simply not focused enough on the things that matter.

We all have a finite number of hours in the day to get everything we want done and we have to focus our minds on what’s important.

But every day I was sifting through mountains of emails I’d voluntarily signed up for over the years, many of which were primarily marketing emails.

So I vowed to get rid of everything that was simply an annoyance and keep the ones that gave me true value.

So from a marketing perspective I remain subscribed to Marie Forleo, James Altucher, Peter Diamandis & Tim Ferris for informational & inspirational purposes.

Other than that I have the usual friends / associate emails.

But I did unsubscribe from my fave personal development guru Tony Robbins and for those of you who have known me for a while, that’s a bit of a shock horror moment.

I love Big T! 🥰

But I do not like his emails.

Firstly he uses his emails to sell, a LOT. Every other email is about his courses, events, apps etc.

Secondly his emails are confusing. They are long with lots of headlines & images and links to different stuff on his site etc. They lose me within seconds as I’m not sure what I’m looking at.

Marie Forleo by comparison sends out notification that she’s just released another video with a singular message about that video and also on occasion she sends out a loving message.

Tim Ferris sends out his latest podcasts and an interesting weekly email called 5 Bullet Friday. Easy, intriguing & quick to consume.

Peter Diamandis sends out long emails some of which I don’t get to read fully, but they’re like a blog post in an email.

Each of these examples sometimes have a sales messages at the bottom of emails for courses or books and once a year Marie launches B-School.

For the most part they are sending out valuable and specific information to help me in business & life.

Lessons?

1. Be specific, don’t load your emails with lots of different stuff that will confuse and turn off your reader.

2. Keep your emails simple. I know that email platforms now offer lots of whiz bang designs, most people don’t have time. Simple is best.
 
3. Don’t be a walking, talking sales machine. Times have changed. The old adage ‘always be selling’ – it doesn’t apply anymore. Always be giving amazing content and believe me the sales will come.

So sorry Big Tone, you have lost me as a subscriber although I’m fairly sure your company will survive! 😉

And if reader, you’re in the throws of figuring out your email marketing strategy, I hope this helps!

Jo 🙂

Radio Advertising – Does It Work?

I had a fab message from a member of my community yesterday asking me;

Hi Jo, can I run a radio ad text by you?

Now to be honest, it’s been a very long time since I advertised on the radio. Probably some 20 years or so now! (Wow how time flies when you’re having fun).

But I love marketing and copy etc so was happy to look at it for him.

With his permission, here is his text ad for his local radio;

“At Naked Telecom we understand that switching to a different supplier for your office phones is challenging.. [pause].. can you trust it will be a smooth change? [pause]…. at Naked Telecom you can have a free trial of our new cloud phone service… because trust is so important in business … that’s why we are called Naked Telecom.. . we believe in open honest business.. visit Naked Telecom dot Net slash 9springs or call tel:0800 xxx xxx for more information. T&Cs apply.”

My first reaction was pretty underwhelmed. I do listen to the radio at home during the day and most ads I’m completely deaf too.

The only radio ad I can remember all the time is ‘Frank Walker from National Tiles’ in Australia, mainly because of his voice and tone.

But Carl (the chap who asked me to take a look) followed up with the following explanation;

“The format I was using is to address the problem with emotion (moving suppliers) and offer a solution (free trial) and put in something about beliefs (Simon Sinek) with CTAs; all in 30secs! “

So the question is, will this work and generate him more calls etc.

Here’s my answer to Carl.

Hey Carl,

Firstly I know nothing about your business, your demographic or your area, so as to whether this will work for you is a ‘how long is a piece of string’ question.

The only way to know for sure is to put it out for a couple of weeks and test it.

How are you going to measure it? Is the number you’re giving a specific number which can only be called if someone heard it on the radio for instance, so you can get a fairly accurate idea of response rate?

If not, how will you know it worked?

It’s been a long time since I did radio advertising and have little knowledge at how effective it is in local areas anymore but as someone who does listen to the radio on a regular basis, I am generally ad deaf, unless the voice or message literally shouts out at me.

In Australia, there is an ad for National Tiles and I only know this because ‘Frank’ the guy who does the ad has such a distinctive voice and tone, you can’t forget it!

The text for your ad is pretty plain and not hugely attention grabbing, so unless you have a unique voice that reads it, I would imagine it will pass by largely unnoticed.

Perhaps get a child to record it, or a woman with a sexy voice. Something to make it stand out. Or change the text to something more attention grabbing.

Thing ‘Sales Letter Headline’!

“Would you like to get naked today???”

Or – “Hey You! Yes You! It’s time to get Naked!!!!!”

(Main copy)

Call Naked Telecom on xxxxxx & get Naked with us!!! 🙂

Please note I just made these up on the spot so they’re not that great but they have a bit more energy and may just grab the attention of your desired customer.

Radio is a tough gig and unless you have a way to measure it accurately it’s an expensive experiment.

Personally I’d ditch radio for FB & Instagram advertising any day.

But whichever way you go, text, image, video, radio etc., the principle is the same. You have to grab attention either with the brand, the color, the message, the voice, the face, the picture.

You have to make people stop and pay attention. Then you can work on your message to get them to take action once they’re listening.

I hope this helps Carl!

Thanks so much for letting me make this a blog post, hopefully my advice will serve others also.

Good Luck with it!

Jo 🙂

Relish Obscurity – Make It Happen Monday Episode 91

Do you ever feel completely invisible?

As a woman it’s amazing how as you get older you do actually become more and more invisible as you walk around, but I’m digressing… 😉

I mean online.

Your blog, your website, your social media accounts etc.

Do you find yourself posting every day, making videos, writing posts, creating fancy infographics but when you publish….

…nothing. Crickets. 😮

Hmm, yes, I know how you feel.

After a a bit of a break from the space I’m in a similar position at the moment, rebuilding my audience all over again and right now it’s very quiet out there.

But that’s OK! In fact it’s perfect!!!

Watch todays video to find out why…..

Watch Episode 91 Here

Please let me know in the comments below if you have any questions. I’m here to help!

Also, please share with your friends if you think this Make It Happen Monday episode has been useful and of course have an amazing week, live life on purpose and Make It Happen.

Thanks for watching!

Happy St Paddy’s Day!!!

Oh man am I glad to be home!

Some 183km’s later, my shoulders are killing me, my nether regions are a bit sore but I did it!

93km’s yesterday, 90km’s today. Whoop Whoop!

I did a 125km ride at the end of last year actually on the same route and you can see that video here;

I’d love it if you would support my endeavors to raise as much money for these beautiful children and give them opportunities they might otherwise never have.

Just $10 will completely change a childs life.

You can sponsor me here – https://gogetfunding.com/ride-4-kids/

So I’m back and heading over to a friends house for St Paddy’s Day celebrations. Yippeee!

I remember years ago (in my 20’s) hitting the pubs of London all dressed in green for a crazy & chaotic afternoon out for St Patricks Day.

Not that I’m Irish you understand, but it’s a great excuse for a day out a bit of a booze up! LOL!

So no matter where you are in the world, see if you can get your hands on a pint of Guinness and raise your glasses to St Patrick, the Patron Saint of Ireland!

Before you do however, while still sober, do make sure you’ve reflected on the last week and planned for the next one.

Remember Sunday is our day for checking in with our goals. Are you moving in the direction you want to?

Have you achieved your weeks goals?

If not why not? Perhaps something else became more important this week.

For example I wanted to do podcasts this week, but actually decided figuring out how to distribute my blog posts across FB & Instagram was more important. (That was a fun moment, tearing my hair out over Instagram posting apps – more on that this week).

However, if you got taken over by more ‘urgent’ things and life got in the way as it tends to do, please remember;

If you don’t prioritise your life, others will. Make sure you make time for the important, not necessarily urgent stuff or it will never happen.

Prioritise Your Life

Have a great week!

Jo 🙂

The Importance of Accountability

Today I am cycling 93km’s into Phang Nga (a province of mainland Thailand), with a group of 4 other crazies.

We’re staying at a hotel tonight and tomorrow we will cycle the 93km’s back.

This is a practice ride for the big 700km ride at the end of May.

I have to be honest and tell you, I don’t want to do it.

I really am not keen on biking, especially on some of the deadliest roads in the world (according to CNN).

But I have to do it.

I have to do it because;

a – It’s all to raise money for children who have had a far harder life than I can ever imagine

b – I committed to it very publicly in front of a large group of people

c – I’ve been raising sponsorship money for the big ride – you can sponsor me just $10 here – https://gogetfunding.com/ride-4-kids/

I have 100% total accountability to see this through to the last kilometer of the 700km’s in May.

My message is, if you want to achieve a goal which seems impossible (a 700km bike ride across Thailand over 6 days seemed pretty impossible to me), get yourself held accountable by any means you can.

Then when the going gets tough and you hit the hard days when every bone in your body is telling you to pack it in and stop being so silly, you have to keep going no matter what!

A quick side note. I have done the same with my blog.

I set myself a goal to write a post a day. I created a feed style page for all my posts and called it ‘Daily Blog’.

If I start missing days, it would hardly be a ‘Daily Blog’ would it, so I’ve created a situation in my business where I’m holding myself publicly accountable for achieving a goal I have set myself.

How can you create accountability for yourself starting today??

Do Small Things With Great Love

I love this quote from the amazing Mother Teresa.

Do Small Things With Great Love
 

Do you know what amazes me actually (slightly digressing). Mother Teresa died around the same time as Princess Diana, and while Diana’s death caught the attention of the world, Mother Teresa who had dedicated her life to serving others slipped away almost unnoticed.

Says something about the world we live in. But todays post is not a political one, it is about the quote itself.

I think sometimes, we all believe we are destined for great things.

I’m almost 47 years old and I had some very grandiose ideas of where I would be in my life right now and although I have an ah-maz-ing life, I haven’t quite reached the echelons of grandeur I originally had planned.

I do still have big ideas for the next 40 years so we’ll see how we go, but in the meantime while reaching for those great things, we can do small things with great love!

In a few weeks I will be cycling across Thailand for two children charities here in Phuket. 700km over 6 days! (I’m not sure love will be on my mind while doing it!) But the fact I volunteered to do it and am training hard definitely comes from a place of love.

On Wednesday last week I gave a speech at an International Women’s Day event which was also a fundraiser for the same charities.

Every 6 months or so we gather unwanted clothes and take them down to the local Burmese camps here in Phuket.

Small things, done with great love.

Remember while you’re hoping or planning to make an impact in a great way, you can be doing some small things right now with great love!

Jo 🙂

Amazing Tips for Taking Iphone Photos

I’m not sure where I came across this guy but he’s phenomenal!

I love to take photos on my iphone but am not an amazing photographer.

I’ve even thought about taking some photography courses, but most I have researched immediately advocate buying a nice big expensive camera.

Money aside, when traveling I love the convenience of the small iPhone rather than hoiking a big expensive camera around with me.

Then last week I came across a chap called Emil Pakarklis.

You can find his YouTube channel here.

Some of the tips he’s given me have already improved my photo taking abilities and I’m consuming all his youtube videos & blog posts like candy! 🙂

He also shows you how to edit your photos for maximum impact, taking photos at night and I found some features of my iPhone I didn’t even know existed!

Check out these photos, the normal version, the ‘bounce’, the ‘loop’ and the ‘long exposure’ version. Who knew those features were there!

Waiotapu Thermal Park - NZ

Waiotapu Thermal Park – NZ – Loop GIF Photo

Phuket Airport

Phuket Airport – Basic Live Photo

Phuket Airport

Phuket Airport – Bounce Photo

This is an unsolicited recommendation for Emil, I don’t know the chap, but his videos have been super helpful so if you love taking photos on your iPhone and want to post amazing posts on Instagram etc then he’s your man! 🙂

Emil on YouTube

One Thing

Last year I read ‘The One Thing’ by Gary Keller & Jay Papasan. I enjoyed the book but have to say I didn’t immediately go out and start practicing the ‘one thing’ theory.

For starters I have so much more to focus on than just ‘one thing’ the whole model seemed unsustainable for me at the time.

Sometimes however we need to hear the same thing in several different formats before it kicks in and we start to take action.

While preparing my speech for the IWD lunch last week, my other half Rhett encouraged me to listen to an episode of ‘The One Thing’ podcast, as inspiration for my topic.

It did indeed but it also brought the main question of the book back into my sphere of thought.

“What’s the ONE Thing I can do such that by doing it everything else will be easier or unnecessary?”

When I first read this question I really couldn’t get to the bottom of what it meant in my life.

However this time when I listened to it, it took on a new meaning.

The episode I was listening to was Losing 50 Pounds in 5 Months with Chris LaGarde. (Definitely worth a listen if you’re on an ongoing weight loss journey like moi!)

But he gave a practical example of weekly food prep as his answer to that question.

If he spent every Sunday prepping his food for the entire week then it made eating the correct portions etc throughout the week far easier and stressful evenings in the kitchen completely unnecessary.

I loved this practical example and it brought the question alive for me.

So in my business for example, if I focus almost exclusively & entirely for the next 12 – 24 months on building my audience, then it will make everything I want to do in my business so much easier and aggressive sales funnels completely unnecessary.

If I have a huge audience of people who love my posts, my videos, my content etc and then I launch a new book, or a new product, or a video course, or a not for profit project (one of my big goals) etc, much of what I do will be sold before it hits the ground.

That’s the benefit of focusing intently on ‘one goal’ of building my audience.

With my fitness & weight loss goals, over the years I have been weight training, done Zumba, yoga, cycling, spinning, walking, keto, paleo, slimming world etc and now vegan.

But now I’m focusing almost exclusively on just eating as many fruit & vegetables as I can get into my body every day. Everything else happens anyway as I have classes (did spinning & yoga this morning).

I’m already seeing a difference just by focusing on that ‘one key thing’ in my diet.

So I ask you;

“What’s the ONE Thing you can do such that by doing it everything else will be easier or unnecessary?”

Ask yourself that question in each priority area of your life and start focusing on just one important thing that could really create a huge impact in your life!

Have a great day.

Jo 🙂

You Have to Make Time

I’ve never been great at time management.

It’s definitely one of my weaknesses.

I just never seem to be able to judge the time it will take me to do something.

I always think I have more time than I have and invariably I’m rushing out the door because I misjudged again or setting myself up to fail in the day because clearly the list of things I want to do versus what I can actually achieve are two completely different things! 😳

At least in the last year I have stopped looking for organization apps online and use my Wunderlist for my To Do’s and a pad to write out the most important things I must get done each day.

But one thing I have learned over the last couple of years is that for the things that you really want to do but always get pushed to the bottom of the pile because there’s seemingly always something more important to do, will NOT get done unless you make time to do them.

If they are that important to you, you have to include them in your daily schedules.

Exercise for example.

We know that on a daily basis we need to move our bodies, but isn’t it amazing how you can fill up your day with work, family, friends, dinner etc and all of a sudden the day is gone and you didn’t get out for that walk or do that yoga session in your head you planned to do. 🤨

We all have the same period of 24 hours each day.

There is no-one in the whole world that has more time in the day than you have. But different people have different priorities.

So work out what your priorities are. Not your ‘urgents’, your priorities.

The things that you really want to do as opposed ‘have to do’ in a day.

20 minutes of yoga
The outline for the course you want to create
The outline for the book you want to write
Your blog post
Your social media post

I’m just making things up here, but whatever is important to you to move you closer to your goals.

If you don’t prioritize your life, believe me other people will!

Your have to’s will happen anyway because they have to!

So focus on your ‘want to’s’ and all of a sudden you’ll find that time does indeed stretch! 🙂

International Women’s Day Speech – Make It Happen Monday Episode 90

A couple of weeks ago I recorded an MIHM episode asking you this very question;

“Are you putting your ass where your heart wants to be?”

Two weeks later and I’m on stage putting my ass where my heart wants to be giving a speech for an International Women’s Day lunch here in Phuket. 😮

I was super nervous before getting up on stage, but once I got into my stride and focused on delivering my impassioned message, I loved it!!!

I want to do more!!! 🕺

Anyway, the subject for my talk was of course – “Put Your Ass Where Your Heart Wants to Be” with the main theme being about grabbing life by the balls and being who you truly want to be in this world!

It’s a 15 minute speech full of stories, great examples of strong women and lots of laughs and I hope that it truly adds value to you, your life & your business.

Thanks so much for watching, have an amazing week ahead! 🙂

Watch Episode 90 Here

Here is a download link to my slides, hope they help! :)

Put Your Ass Where Your Heart Wants to Be – The Slides

Or click this image;


 

Please let me know in the comments below if you have any questions. I’m here to help!

Also, please share with your friends if you think this Make It Happen Monday episode has been useful and of course have an amazing week, live life on purpose and Make It Happen.

Thanks for watching!

Maroon 5 – Bangkok

Hello! Happy Sunday! 🙂

Last night I went to a Maroon 5 gig at the Impact Arena Bangkok.

It was a fun night, but I have to say it’s not one of the best live gigs I’ve been too.

The band were good, the music was great and they played classic Maroon 5 after classic Maroon 5, so it was a great sing along to all their best tunes.

But there was no engagement with the audience, at all. We got a couple of ‘how you doin Bangkok’s’ and that was about it.

Also while singing Adam Levine had little stage presence. Very different when he picked up a guitar which was absolutely magic!

Towards the end they did a couple of acoustic numbers which were much better and at last he sounded like the Adam Levine I’ve been listening to for the last 14 years.

(Can you believe they’ve been around for such a long time! All credence to them).

But as I said they did all their classics and so the evening was just one big sing along and therefore lots of fun.

Now we’re on route back to Phuket and I am writing out my ’To Do’ lists for this week, which just seem to be getting bigger and bigger each week!

I did not have a very productive week last week as my head was primarily caught up in my speech all week. (Look out for tomorrows MIHM episode).

So this week coming is a big catch up week for me.

How about you??

Have you reflected on your week and planned the coming week?

That’s what Sundays are for!

Hope you have an amazing week.

Jo 🙂

Build a New Model

Happy Saturday!

I’m off to Bangkok today to see Maroon 5 in concert! Very excited. So I’ll keep this short.

I read a quote this morning which said;

’You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the old model obsolete’ Richard Buckminster Fuller.

It’s really made me think about my life and what I’m trying to change.

For example. Last year I set myself a goal to write daily blog posts and failed because my model was 1000 – 2000 word ‘how to’ posts, which took time to research, write, create images etc.

So I built a completely new model based on the Seth Godin blog model of having my posts more like a feed, all on one page, scrollable from top to bottom without having to actually click through to each individual post.

Thereby turning my posts into 200 – 300 word daily musings (which is what I originally called it – Jo’s Daily Musings).

It’s made my precious blog model obsolete and made it possible for me to write & publish every day.

So, now I’m looking at how else I can incorporate this into my life to make it easier for me to achieve my goals.

This weekend, ask yourself, what new models can you build to make your life easier??

Have a good one!

Jo 🙂

Happy International Womens Day

Happy International Women’s Day!

Started back in the early 1900’s IWD was a vehicle to gather women together from across the world to demonstrate & protest for equal rights, the right to vote and hold public office.

Over the years it became a day to promote radical social reforms up until the 21st Century when corporate sponsors began to use it to promote feel good messages.

Today, each year has a specific theme to highlight hardships, women in developing countries, violence, gender discrimination, empowerment etc.

Source – Wikipedia – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Women’s_Day

This year, the theme is ‘Balance’. ‘Better the Balance, Better the World’.

My favorite quote for the day;

“The story of women’s struggle for equality belongs to no single feminist nor to any one organisation but to the collective efforts of all who care about human rights.” Gloria Steinem, world-renowned feminist, journalist and activist

IWD for me is about men & women working together to create a better world.

It’s up to us to educate our sons & daughters that collaboration is the key.

And we must celebrate our differences, rather than strive to be the same.

Men & women are different which is why they work so well together.

Women shouldn’t have to act like a man in the workplace anymore than a man should have to act like a woman in the home.

We need to bring our uniqueness and our strengths and weaknesses to each and every area of life and look to each other for understanding and support.

If you do nothing else today, man or woman, recognize your strengths and weaknesses versus those of your spouse, friends, family members etc and vow to accept the differences, excel where you can and support where they can’t as they should you.

And if you have children, teach them from the get go, the future is togetherness. Men, women, black, white, muslim, christian.

It is only through our love can we eradicate hatred.

Happy International Women’s Day 🙂

Frustrating Websites!

I tend to do a lot of research through my days.

Looking at travel websites, business bloggers, foodies sites etc and I have to say some websites are so incredibly frustrating I click away almost immediately!

Listen up as this is a great post to take heed of if you’re a website owner!

Sometimes, before I’ve even got past the headline a pop up pop’s up, which on a mobile is crazy annoying as invariably it’s not easy to close it down.

But here’s where I really lose my rag, I close the pop up only to be redirected to the top of the page and another offer or list builder which takes me away from the post I wanted to read.

I scroll back down to my post only to be greeted by something that flashes out at the bottom or the right of the screen once again covering some of the content I want to look at!

That’s it. I’m off.

I totally get that websites want to build their lists. I do too. But you need to get people interested in your content first, otherwise they’ll only unsubscribe from your list anyway.

A solid email list of subscribers is built out of trust and loyalty. If your content is so good that readers come back again and again and then sign up because they want more, that’s the best kind of subscriber you can have.

So create awesome content, include some attractive but unobtrusive offers to sign up for more info and slowly but surely build a list of loyal subscribers who will stand the test of time, oh and will also recommend your stuff to their friends!

Jo 🙂

P.S. If you’d love to know more about how to build a business you can run from anywhere in the world, click the image below! (Thats what I’m talking about!). 😉

International Womens Day Speech

Well have I been moving out of my comfort zone lately!

Firstly skiing last week which was one of the scariest things I have done for a while and then today I was a presenter at a lunch attended by 150 people!

Here in Phuket we have two main charities who hold lots of various fundraising events – Phuket Has Been Good To Us & The Good Shepherd.

Today they held an International Women’s Day Lunch at which I was invited to make a speech.

I nervously accepted the invitation as I haven’t spoken in front of a crowd in any meaningful way since I did a talk about Facebook Marketing in Auckland in 2011 (which, to be fair, was probably not my finest speaking gig ever!)

So I decided to take Steven Pressfields quote – ‘Put Your Ass Where Your Heart Wants to Be’ and make that the title and theme of my presentation.

I was one of three presenters and I was so nervous! 😳

I kept saying to myself, which is more scary Jo, skiing or presenting and every time skiing came out on top, but that did nothing to stop the butterflies from flying vigorously around my tummy!

But guess what!?

It was awesome!

I thoroughly enjoyed the experience, was clearly in my element and had the audience clapping even before I finished!

Oh how I wish we believed in ourselves a little bit more sometimes. Imagine what we could achieve if we just went out into life every day believing we were amazing individuals capable of anything! 🙂

I will be posting the video as next weeks Make It Happen Monday episode so look out for it!

After skiing and now this, I’m feeling very excited today and believe I can achieve anything! 🙂

Family You Choose

I’ve just spoken to one of my bestest buddies on the phone.

I’ve known Caz for well over 15 years or so and it was a friendship born out of a work relationship.

At the beginning we weren’t hugely close, mainly drinking buddies and someone to moan too about our dysfunctional relationships / bosses. But over time what began as a casual mate ship developed into a deep and unconditional bond that will undoubtedly stand the test of time.

I live in Phuket, she lives in the UK so the most we see each other is once a year. We probably chat on the phone twice a year and send a general what’s app message every couple of months.

But when we speak it’s as if we were together yesterday. And if the chips were down I know we’d be there for each other.

I probably only have 4 or 5 people in my life I feel the same way about and I feel lucky to have that many.

Friends are the family we choose and I for one am so grateful I have such an abundant and loving family.

Reach out to a friend today and let them know how much you appreciate and love them.

It’ll make both of you feel amazing and will also remind you how much you’re loved.

With love & gratitude,

Jo 🙂

Life Begins at the End of Your Comfort Zone – Make It Happen Monday Episode 53 (repeat)

Last week I was skiing in a beautiful little town called Avoriaz in France.

It’s the second time I’ve skied in my life, the first being two years ago in the same lovely little town.

But to be honest because I’m a beginner and there was a two year period between trips, it felt like my first time all over again!

The first two days I cried a lot and told myself it was too hard and by Day 6, I was parallel skiing down a small blue run and loving it!

I wanted to make this weeks Make It Happen Monday episode while there, but life got in the way and I didn’t get round to recording a video, but I remembered I’d recorded an episode the first time I went.

So I’ve watched it today and to be honest, I couldn’t say it better this time!

Everything in this episode is exactly what I would say right now having just got back.

Life does begin at the end of your comfort zone and even though it can seem super scary and almost impossible at the time, if you persevere, there are rainbows beyond!

I hope you enjoy the episode…

Watch Episode 53 Here

Please let me know in the comments below if you have any questions. I’m here to help!

Also, please share with your friends if you think this Make It Happen Monday episode has been useful and of course have an amazing week, live life on purpose and Make It Happen.

Thanks for watching!

Sunday Again??

OMG, it’s Sunday again!!!

So many Sundays. It’s amazing how you notice how fast the weeks go by when you’re focused on reviewing each week.

So I know that I achieved my goal of maintaining Daily Blogs this week because I wrote & scheduled the entire weeks worth of daily blog posts before I left for France!

Yippeee! Preparation is the key.

However, that doesn’t mean I don’t have a whole heap of work to do when I get home.

So this week for me other than my daily blog posts, I would really like to get my podcast up and running again.

So that’s my big goal this week to record & edit the next months worth of podcast episodes, also to give a super valuable speech at the International Women’s Day event on Weds.

How about you? Did you have a good week? What have you got planned for this coming week?

Have a fabulous one!

Jo 🙂

Uh Oh, I’m Getting Addicted to Instagram!

So I have always been a Facebook girl.

I started my entire online career immersed in facebook fan pages and teaching others how to build communities & emails lists using facebook.

I spent hours and hours playing with facebook ads and again created courses & ebooks and teachings on how best to use FB ads.

So after a bit of a break away it was a natural action for me to once again start posting on facebook. It’s comfortable, it’s what I know.

However, I couldn’t help but notice the prevalence of Instagram in business today and so decided to check it out. (Plus its the only way I can actually communicate with my daughter when we’re not together!)

After just a few weeks of playing with it, I love it!!!

For my brand which is so much about pictures it’s absolutely perfect and it’s so easy to take a photo, add a filter, a caption and away you go!

I’m just starting to get my head around stories & tags etc, but expect lots of updates & posts on how I’m working on spreading my message & increasing my followers & brand using Instagram.

In the meantime, if you’re not yet following me I’d love to see you over there. You can find me @jobarnesonline (your lifestyle business was taken).

I’ll be sure to follow back!

See you on Insta! (I’m so down with the kids).

Jo 🙂

Jo on Instagram

This Time Next Year I’ll be Married

I just realized that yesterday was the 28th Feb and this time next year will be 29th Feb because it’s a leap year and I’m getting married on 29th Feb 2020!

How exciting!

We have secured our wedding venue and I have just started sending out invitations via an amazing website called Greenvelope. The invites are completely online with cute little envelopes that open the invite as a gif on your computer.

It’s fab!

So here’s some pics of the venue.

Its being held in Phang Nga just North of Phuket Island on mainland Thailand and the location is absolutely stunning!

We’re getting married at sunrise and then having a huge party which will last throughout the day into the evening.

We have been together for 10 years now and I feel so blessed to be marrying my best friend and the absolute love of my life.

He cares for me, supports me, encourages me, believes in me and loves me just as I am, as do I him. We couldn’t be any luckier to have found each other if we’d tried.

So now I just need to focus on looking amazing in a white blingy swimsuit! 🙂

Stop Watching The News

“Stop watching the news
Because the news contrives to frighten you
To make you feel small and alone
To make you feel that your mind isn’t your own”

Spent the Day in Bed – Morrissey

I tried to figure out how to delete the news app from my phone last week.

Turns out you can’t but you can turn all notifications off so you don’t get the primarily depressing stories popping up on your phone at all hours of the day & night.

How easy it is to get addicted to headlines.

I even tried to tell myself it’s because I wanted to stay informed about what was happening in the world.

My partner told me if he heard one more rant about Trump he’d leave me.

Regularly reading the news makes me angry, sad, incredulous, disappointed, confused and amazed at the shite we are fed & that we allow ourselves to focus our attention on.

The world is an amazing place. The only way to stay informed is to get out and live it!

Get out from in front of the TV, your phone, your computer & experience life.

At the very least stop reading the news & allow your view of the world to come from what you see around you, not what’s fed to you from someone else’s ‘skewed with an agenda’ view of the world.

Have a great & news free day!

Jo 🙂

Persistence and Showing Up is More Important Than Talent

I have decided I want to write a book.

In fact I’m not going to lie.

I decided probably some 10 years ago I wanted to write a book, but for some reason I haven’t yet.

Hmm, so what’s the reason? Oh you know, doubt, fear, insecurity, judgement, total procrastination!

Only the very emotions that hold so many back from getting out there and achieving their dreams and that I talk about and rally against at every available opportunity.

(See you’re not alone).

So what’s changed?

I’ve spoken in a couple of recent posts about an interview I saw recently with best selling author Steven Pressfield.

It’s clearly had a huge impact on me as I think I’ve now mentioned it three or four times.

He said – ‘Persistence and Showing Up is More Important Than Talent’

Does that mean I think I have no talent?

No not at all, but continuously worrying about whether you’re good enough rather than just showing up, making it happen and getting better with practice means you’ll never know whether you really are more talented than you think you are.

That’s why I started my Daily Blog. I wanted to get into the habit of writing and publishing every day without fail.

Just persistently showing up.

What is it you want to do that you’re not currently doing because of fear of failure or judgement etc.

What can you start doing right now to simply start showing up?

Make it Happen! 😀

(P.S. I’ll let you know when the books live!)

Preparation is the Key to Consistency!

As much as I really want to post live updates while I’m skiing in the snow mountains of Avoriaz, I remember from last time how terrible the internet was and so in preparation for bad connectivity I am preparing an entire weeks worth of Daily Blog posts so as to ensure I maintain my consistency of posting once a day.

Truth be told I do this in all sorts of ways.

I record 4 or 5 Make It Happen Monday videos in one sitting usually, although I also get many flashes of inspiration while out and about after listening to a podcast, or having a conversation with someone and so I also do random episodes from various places around the world.

The reason I haven’t been consistent with my podcast is because I don’t have several episodes lined up to go out weekly and time runs away with me every week. (This is my next job)

I have memes, quotes & images pre-designed to post on FB or Instagram on a daily basis.

All consistency is down to preparation.

You are so much better acknowledging that life will get in the way of things you want to do sometimes and the better prepared you are for those forks in the road the less they will actually impact you, than kidding yourself that of course you can fit it all in (like I frequently do).

Get prepared and be consistent.

Have a fab day!

Jo 🙂

Put Your Ass Where Your Heart Wants to Be – Make It Happen Monday Episode 89

Are you truly happy?

Are you being the person you want to be?

If not, why do you think that is?

I’ll tell you my theory, it’s because to be who we really want to be is actually much harder than just plodding along in life getting by.

Being who you want to be and achieving true happiness takes putting your ass where your heart wants to be! (Thanks to Steven Pressfield for the brilliant quote)

This morning my ass was not where I wanted to be, which was on a cold beach in West Wittering!

Made for a good setting for this weeks episode of Make It Happen Monday though.

Watch todays video, count how many times I say the word ‘ass’ for fun and listen to the message.

This one sentence has had a profound impact on my life, it could do the same for you.

Enjoy! 🙂

Watch Episode 89 Here

Please let me know in the comments below if you have any questions. I’m here to help!

Also, please share with your friends if you think this Make It Happen Monday episode has been useful and of course have an amazing week, live life on purpose and Make It Happen.

Thanks for watching!

B-School & Sunday Review

Happy Sunday!

How’s your week been? Productive I hope.

It’s Sunday review time, so how have you done? Have you achieved what you set yourself for this week?

As I said yesterday I’ve been in the UK visiting family this week, but have also been working on a speech I’m giving at an International Women’s Day event in Phuket in a couple of weeks.

To be honest it’s taken me hours to write it. I’m only talking for 10 minutes, but it’s not my usual audience of budding entrepreneurs wanting to know how to build a business they can run from anywhere in the world.

This is a diverse range of women from all cultures & creeds, some of whom might be interested in business, many of whom probably won’t be.

So, I’ve been trying to come up with a subject all week that applies to us all in some way or another and I’ve written maybe 10 different rough drafts, none of which really went anywhere until Thursday morning.

I was very inspired recently by the Steven Pressfield quote – ‘Put Your Ass Where Your Heart Wants to Be’ and so I decided rather than write a speech, write a potential blog post about what that means to me.

2160 words later I have a pretty darn good speech I think!

Other than that I have continued to write my daily blog posts, have almost finished my book outline (on the plane yesterday) but have not recorded anymore MIHM eps as planned. So will have to get my ass in gear this week in the snow!

I tell you what I did do this week though.

I joined B-School. Please note I am not an affiliate so this is not a sales pitch.

I decided I wanted to add a bit of style & class to my business (and our ecommerce business) and Marie Forleo has oodles of that, so I jumped in!

It also proves that no matter how successful your business is, you never stop learning!

If you jump in also, do let me know so we can make contact and compare notes. Exciting!

So, I better be off. Have arrived in Avoriaz in France for a week of skiing and I have a lesson starting shortly.

My heart is in my mouth and I’m really not looking forward to it at all, but I know by the time I write tomorrow I’ll be all excited and full of my nursery slope achievements! 😉

I must say though it’s breathtakingly gorgeous here. Pics to follow.

Have a fab Sunday, I’m setting no intentions this week other than to publish a Daily Blog.

Make sure you write out your goals, stick them somewhere prominent and Make Them Happen!!!

Jo 🙂

Home is Where the Heart Is! :)

It’s Saturday and as you read this I’m on route to Avoriaz in France to meet up with friends and go skiing for the week!

I have to say, I’m in two minds about the whole thing.

I first went skiing two years ago and the biggest lesson I learned was not to start skiing in your 40’s!

You’re too full of fear!

I spent the first 2 days crying and then once I’d got the hang of it the last 2 days merrily skiing down the Nursery slopes feeling like a pro!

However some 2 years on, the fear has all returned and I’m nervous as hell of hurting myself, even though I’m much stronger & fitter than last time.

Anyway, keep your eyes out on FB & Instagram for pics & updates!

In the meantime I just had a lovely if not slightly chilly week in the UK visiting my Mum, Sister & family.

You know we travel all over the world and live in a beautiful hot country but there’s nothing like putting on a big jacket, a beanie and wondering around in the British countryside / seaside.

I couldn’t stay here for too long (bit too chilly for me), but oh my gosh is it nice to go shopping in the UK. So great to find clothes that fit & food that’s properly refridgerated!!! 🙂

I could shop til I drop!

Anyway, here’s a few pics of my trip.

Looking forward to sharing what I know will be truly beautiful snaps from the mountains of Avoriaz!

Have a fab weekend.

Jo 🙂

What would you do if you weren’t afraid of failing…

So I read a blog post recently entitled – ‘What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail’

I loved the question and it immediately conjured up visions of being a famous popstar (childhood dream – now passed on to my daughter funnily enough) or running a world changing charity with Richard Branson. (Could still happen!)

But it also made me think, how failure means such different things to different people.

Is failure never running the business you want too and being a stay at home parent or is failure running the business you want too and never seeing your family?

Different for all of us right?

And what does the word failure actually mean anyway? According to the dictionary it simply means ‘lack of success’.

But success means a multitude of things to a multitude of people also.

This is why years ago I adopted the mindset that failure doesn’t exist.

I know I know, cliche time – it’s not failure, its feedback.

But if we unpack that it’s actually true.

If I do something and it doesn’t work, I haven’t failed, I’ve just realized a way not to do it.

That’s why failure is not actually the issue.

It’s the fear of the unknown that’s the real culprit here.

Hence why I changed the question for this post to – ‘what would you do if you weren’t afraid of failing?’

– Would you start that business you’ve been meaning too?
– Approach that influencer you’d love to work with?
– Talk to that man / woman you quite fancy?
– Send a video to Chris Hemsworth explaining that his wife is pretty but he just hasn’t met you yet? (Just me?) 😂

You get the picture.

Write out that question in big bold letters on the top of a piece of paper and start to list the things you would do if you weren’t afraid of failing.

Then ask yourself what needs to happen for you to take the leap?

You may not find the answer right now, but it’s a great start to getting the ideas flowing and your intentions out to the universe!

Make It Happen awesome action taker! 😎

Building Trust & Authority – Part 2 – Serving Your Audience

What does your ideal audience want?

Do you know?

In Part 1 of this little article series I recommended you identify precisely who your target market is and then make a big list of all the influencers or brands that you think your ideal audience is currently following.

Even if you think you know what your audience wants, you can never truly get a measure of what’s on their mind better than them actually telling you!

By looking at comments on posts, FB lives, images, blog posts, videos etc you can get to the heart of what is really going through the mind of the person you want to reach with your brand.

By reading their thoughts, feedback, comments & questions to your fellow influencers and businesses you have a ready made stream of relevant content you can now create targeting precisely what they themselves have asked for!

Genius right? Thanks social media 😀

So that’s your task for this week.

Pour through all the comments and feedback you can find and make a big list of all the questions and struggles you can identify.

In Part 3 we’ll start going about creating impactful content to catch their attention although the fact that you’re getting to the crux of their thought process means you’ll already be halfway there!

Boom! 💥

Put Your Ass Where Your Heart Wants to Be

It’s dark & cold where I am at the moment.

I’m a sunshine girl, so I’m not afraid to tell you, I did not want to get up and do yoga this morning.

I’m up way too early and the heating hasn’t even come on yet. (Boo Hoo me right!) 🤪

But I have made a deal with myself this week while I’m away from home and my usual gym, spinning, cycling routine.

I will do 30 mins of yoga every morning and go for an hours walk every day. That’s my commitment to myself.

But the brain is resisting!!! Oh boy is it resisting.

Just like it does when I want to publish a new video, or start on a chapter of my book or create a new social media post or literally do anything which takes me a bit out of my comfort zone (which doing any kind of exercise in the cold certainly does).

It’s amazing how the brain actually starts to make up stories as to why it’s totally justifiable not to the thing you actually want to do.

‘You don’t have to do yoga yet, the body is a bit stiff anyway as it’s cold, why not do it later when you’ve warmed up a bit!’ (That literally went through my mind this morning before I told my own brain to bugger off and get a life)

Oh my goodness why are we always fighting with the little voices in our heads to get the things we want to do done! Surely if we want to do them they should just come easy right??

Well I’m happy to say even the best of the best battle with themselves on a daily basis.

Watch this fab chat Marie Forleo had with best selling author Steven Pressfield all about resistance and how it’s actually perfectly normal. In fact he describes ‘resistance’ as a bad character in a movie who we have to stand up and defeat. Love it!

So I did my yoga this morning and yesterday and the day before that. And I have been doing my hourly walks and writing my posts and making my videos and doing my social media posts, all despite the little voices in my head.

All because Steve Pressfield said – ‘Put your ass where your heart wants to be’

Amen to that! 😇

Create Don’t Consume

Good morning! It’s 6am here in the super chilly South of England.

Clearly suffering from a touch of jet lag I have been awake since 3.10am this morning, but rather than do anything productive, I lay in bed convincing myself to try to go back to sleep while also surfing Instagram for inspiration!

I have decided this year I really want to make Instagram my thing, so I’ve started having a look around, see what other people are doing, how they’re using it, what’s effective and what’s not etc.

This in itself is not a bad thing to do, it’s always a good idea to see what’s working on a platform and what’s not, however….

If you’re building your business and your audience it’s so important you do your research and then get off and become a creator not a consumer.

I got caught up for well over an hour this morning reading posts, comments, looking through stories etc and quickly found that my ‘business exploration’ had turned into complete distraction with all the characters from the Marvel movies!!! (Can’t resist a bit of Chris Hemsworth in the morning)! 😮

Too easy right??

Lesson of the day is – set a time limit for researching other people’s social media content for inspiration for your own.

Know precisely what it is you’re looking for – are you looking at how people have written their bio’s, what links they use, how they’re creating stories, how posts are formatted etc.
Go in knowing what you want to get out, set your timer, do the work, make the notes and then stop!

Time is short, make sure you use yours to create not consume!

Have a great day 😀

My First Six Figures – Make It Happen Monday Episode 88

There are a multitude of different business models to choose from when building a lifestyle business.

You might decide to become a freelancer and build people’s websites, create graphics, write for a living etc.

You might decide to generate profits from your passions, and showcase your expertise via information products or digital marketing.

Perhaps you have physical products you’d like to sell or fancy a go at becoming an Amazon seller.

Whichever model you choose they all require customers.

Your business is predicated on having people to buy from you.

Here’s how I generated my first six figures online and the most important thing you must be doing if you want to build a successful and profitable business that will allow you the freedom to work from anywhere in the world!

I hope it helps.

Jo 🙂

Watch Episode 88 Here

Please let me know in the comments below if you have any questions. I’m here to help!

Also, please share with your friends if you think this Make It Happen Monday episode has been useful and of course have an amazing week, live life on purpose and Make It Happen.

Thanks for watching!

A Fresh But Beautiful Sunday!

Wow, is it Sunday again??

Weeks seem to fly by! That’s why it’s so important to take an hour out each week to review what you’ve achieved & set your intentions for the week ahead.

Otherwise one week moulds into another week and another & so on and all of a sudden a whole year has passed by again!

So I have just arrived in the UK this morning.

It’s a beautiful day if not a little fresh!

Just arrived in London!

Good morning London! 😁

My intentions for the next week are to spend some quality time with my family here, to ensure I continue publishing daily blog posts, record a couple of MIHM episodes on the beach & complete the outlines for the book I want to write and also a speech I’m giving in a couple of weeks time at an International Women’s Day Lunch in Phuket.

I watched Marie Forleo interview author Steven Pressfield last week & he said a book outline should fit nicely on an A4 piece of lined paper. (Such an inspirational interview by the way, highly recommended and I’ll be posting separately about it this week).

Sounds good to me! So that’s my plan!

What are your intentions for the week ahead?

Write them out, stick them somewhere prominent and make them happen.

Have a great week! 😁

India Here We Come!

Yipeee the next Sisters on Tour trip has been planned and booked!

Every year for the last 3 years my sister & I have gone off traveling for 3 weeks in Feb / March time leaving hubby & kids behind!

The first year we did a city tour covering Bangkok, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Beijing, Tokyo & Kuala Lumpur.

The second year we did a cultural tour visiting, Chiang Mai (Thailand), Bagan & Yangon (Myanmar) beautiful, Siem Reap (Cambodia) life changing & Hanoi (Vietnam), choosing to fly over Halong Bay in a sea plane.

Then last year we did a beachy, snorkel, dive tour and headed to Koh Samui (Thailand), Bohol & El Nido (Philippines) & Bali.

So to this year, quite possibly our craziest trip to date!

Over the course of 23 days in April / May we fly to;

Kathmandu – including a flight over Everest

Then onto India, including;

Delhi
Agra (Taj Mahal)
New Delhi
Jaipur
Varanasi
Madurai

Then off to Colombo in Sri Lanka for a couple of days, ending in the Maldives for 3 days before returning home.

It’s going to be hot, busy, we’re likely to get tummy bugs, but I can’t wait!!!

I love to travel more than anything else so this will be another exciting adventure which I will obviously record here on the YLB Daily Blog!

I look forward to sharing our journey with you.

Jo 🙂

Observation Without Judgement

I had to repost this fantastic Instagram post by my good friend Hayden who is the Manager of our local gym.

Observation without judgement
 

This hit me like a tonne of bricks yesterday as I read it and realised as a self rated non-judgemental person, how much I actually do judge!

For started I’m always judging myself and am usually giving myself a hard time over something! My resolution this year was to be a bit kinder to myself mentally!

But sometimes without even realising I judge friends and people I meet. I judge their moods, their behaviour, what I think they’re thinking about me, what I think they’re thinking about others, what I think they think about themselves.

Why do we do that?

I had a whole conversation with someone yesterday who was trying to gauge a mutual friends reaction to a message she had sent when the other person had not yet responded!

How do we know what they’re thinking until they actually tell us.

It’s crazy.

This post is so true. Whatever you think is going on in someone else’s head, remember it’s a reflection of how you see the world.

You can never be inside someone else’s mind and truly understand how they see the world, even your closest loved ones.

You haven’t lived their life, you haven’t been through what they have, seen what they’ve seen, been who they’ve been.

You have only lived yours and therefore everything will be slanted to how you view the world.

From this moment forward and I challenge you (it’s not going to be easy), next time you’re in a conversation with yourself or a friend or colleague, try to simply observe without any judgement whatsoever.

Phew it’s a toughie but I have a sneaking suspicion it will lead to greater inner peace.

Let me know how you get on!

Jo 🙂

Happy Valentines Day!

I love Valentines Day. Just as I love Christmas, Easter, Halloween, Birthdays etc.

Any chance for an extra reason to remind us to celebrate life or each other sounds like a good thing to me.

And yes I understand the comments about commercialism and exploitation etc. But the world is hard enough and sad enough as it is.

Let’s take these moments and use them as reminders to tell the ones around us how much we love and appreciate them, whether you choose flowers or just a big hug & a kiss.

Have a wonderful Valentines Day wherever you are.

I appreciate you!

Jo :)

Happy Valentines Day

Building Trust & Authority – Part 1 – Finding Your Audience

Do you ever feel like you’re creating & publishing content to an empty space?

You write a masterful blog post, record a great video, excitedly put it out into the world and then………..

…….nothing.

Maybe a like, possibly a share, perhaps a comment from a good friend, but other than that, nada.

Fear not my friend. I’m right there with you at the moment.

Having had a 2-3 year break away from this space, it’s like a lifetime online and here I am starting all over again beginning to build that trust and authority that I once had.

In fact this week I started to question whether there was still an audience that wanted to know how to build a business they could run entirely online.

Had the world changed? Did people want something else now?

After looking through facebook pages, instagram accounts and blogs of authorities in the digital marketing space, travel blogs and self development sites, I’m happy to report the thirst for that knowledge is alive and well, if not even more so now the model has been proven over and over again.

So how do you get started building trust and authority in a market saturated with awesome influencers, who appear to be years ahead of you, have a million connections and who you can’t possibly compete with?

Know the feeling?

Well, step one is don’t compete.

The world is big enough and there are enough people looking for your knowledge, experience, product or service that you just need to find your own voice.

As you grow think collaboration not competition. Celebrate the fact there are lots of other people doing what you want to do as it means there is a market.

You just have to find your own unique voice that resonates with the people you want to attract.

So who do you want to attract. Start there, write down precisely who you want your audience to be (super important, don’t focus on who you think your audience should be, ask yourself, who would you love to be your ideal customer, client, reader etc) and then do what I did yesterday….

Make a list of all the influencers, authority blogs, instagram accounts, facebook pages etc., who you think your ideal audience are currently following.

The questions and conversations happening on these platforms are going to serve as inspiration to get your content off the ground and ensure you’re creating the kind of content your audience wants to hear.

Look out for Part 2 of this series – “Serving Your Audience”

Have a great day!

Jo 🙂

Have You Tried Yoga?

Oh my how I love Yoga.

It has literally transformed my life.

When I started my health journey back in 2016 40kg’s (80lbs) overweight and struggling to even pull myself out of a car door, I started with yoga.

Just a video a day in front of the TV.

Within a year I had adopted healthier habits, lost 20kg’s and was stronger, more flexible and felt younger than I had in years.

Some 3 years later I haven’t stuck to doing it every single day like I hoped I would, just like all of us life gets in the way sometimes, but I regularly get back in the saddle and am currently doing my latest 30 day program with the lovely Adrienne, my yoga mentor for the last 3 years.

You can find her channel and info here if you fancy giving it a go yourself.

I always feel so much better when I’m incorporating the classes into my daily life not just from a physical perspective, but mentally it’s an opportunity to focus on YOU.

It’s like a moving form of meditation, deep breathing, focus and self love. It’s truly beautiful.

Managing stress in our lives is so very important and I believe relates directly to happiness & productivity.

So if you’re looking for an outlet, give this a go!

Have a great day!

’Super Bendy’ Jo :)

This is Your Moment – Make It Happen Monday Episode 87

It’s so easy to get caught up setting goals and planning for the future that we forget to live for right now.

The crazy thing is that right now, this very minute is life.

It’s not where we’ve been or where we might be going, it’s what’s happening right now.

Perhaps if we spent more time in the present than in the past or future, we’d be far happier and content with our lives.

Check out todays episode for 3 tips on living for right now and to hear the conversation I had with an incredibly positive young man from Myanmar yesterday….

Jo :)

Watch Episode 87 Here

Please let me know in the comments below if you have any questions. I’m here to help!

Also, please share with your friends if you think this Make It Happen Monday episode has been useful and of course have an amazing week, live life on purpose and Make It Happen.

Thanks for watching!

It’s Sunday review time!

How did your week go?

Did you achieve all your goals?

Now is the time to look back over the week and be super honest with yourself.

Did you set too many goals? (Always a habit of mine!) Maybe you didn’t challenge yourself enough.

If you set some goals that you didn’t achieve, maybe they’re not as much of a priority as you think they are.

If you can, just take 20 mins out of your day today to make sure you’re heading in the direction you want to and set goals for the week ahead that will empower you to take action and make it happen!!!

Have a great week.

Jo :)

Is It Taking Longer Than Planned?

Is your business taking longer than planned to get off the ground?

Do you find yourself pedaling fast and going nowhere?

Do you ever feel like packing it all in?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, I can assure you, you’re not alone.

Starting and running a business (even a small one) takes a lot of time, effort & patience.

A bit like my weight loss journey.

I frequently hear myself say to my other half, ‘never have I worked so hard for so long with so little results’.

But I know it’s coming.

I know that I’m stronger and fitter than I was 3 years ago. I know I’ve slowed down the aging of my body, and can do things now I couldn’t (or wouldn’t) do before.

I know that I’m sharper, have more energy and feel better in myself.

I know that I’m following the right process and making good decisions for my body, so I’m certain the weight will eventually follow.

It’s the same with business.

Look around you. How much more do you know now than you did a few years ago?

How much more open is your mind? How many more opportunities do you see? How many more people do you know?

How much more excited rather than scared by technology are you?

Provided you’re following the correct processes and making good decisions for your business, the money will eventually follow.

Have faith, it’s coming! :)

Quick & Easy Travel Videos

So yesterday I talked about the phone app InShot.

Here is an example of a video I made in about 20 minutes showcasing my recent trip to the Phuket Elephant Sanctuary.

Please note I have only played with it a couple of times and most certainly have not used all the fabulous features available.

But what a great way to quickly & easily create little travel videos to include on blog posts and on social media!

I look forward to getting better & better the more I do! :)

Yippeee! Best Option For Mobile Posting!

After spending the last few days testing various methods of writing, preparing & uploading posts for my blog from my mobile phone while on the go, I have discovered the best option by far!

The biggest issue I had was posting images.

Because I do a lot of travelling I like to showcase the places I have been, but when uploading images to WordPress via my phone, the full size image is uploaded which would slow down my site considerably.

Plus I couldn’t create & edit a nice gallery style effect for the pics.

Also I couldn’t prepare properly while offline and would therefore have to wait for an internet connection to start uploading hefty images which if the connection was a bit dodgy which it frequently is when travelling, my photos may not upload anyway!

So here is my solution;

1. Write the post in Evernote first.

Evernote works on & offline, meaning you can write out & prep your post completely offline. Evernote will sync when back online.

2. Use an app called – InShot. (Download from App Store)

InShot is a photo editing app and has a huge range of collages, photo editing tools, stickers, text, backgrounds and all sorts to create super fun images you can use for blogs, social media etc.

It also works for creating funky videos! (See tomorrow’s post).

3. Copy & paste your post from Evernote into the WordPress app on your phone!

(Be sure to choose ‘post without formatting’)

If you’re offline simply save as a draft.

4. When you’re online add your considerably smaller sized collage you’ve created and away you go!

This is how I’ll be doing all my posts on mobile from now on.

If you’re someone who wants to create blog posts on the go and use pics & videos I do hope this is useful to you!

Happy Blogging! 😁

Testing Creating a Post on Mobile

In my quest to find the best way to prepare & upload blog posts from my phone and on the go, today I thought I’d just have a go at creating a post from the actual WordPress dashboard but on my mobile.

From here I’m hoping I can add all the usual formatting, plus add galleries etc.

Let’s see what we can do!

1. Add Images

Your Lifestyle Business

Random Buddha Image

OK so I’m going to leave this image as is. As you can see it’s on it’s side and even though I have tried to move to the correct position on my phone, no can do. :(

2. Add Gallery

Cannot edit gallery positioning on phone!!! This is it. Frustrating :(

3. Add bullets;

  1. First Bullet
  2. Second Bullet
  3. Third Bullet

Yep bullets work, as does usual formatting like Bold.

Or a Headline

Summary

It’s certainly not the easiest thing to do on mobile as the page keeps resizing as you edit and I keep losing where I was on the post and suddenly getting kicked off etc. Plus I can’t edit the gallery positioning or the images it would seem.

Hmmmm, more testing required!

Testing WordPress Mobile App

As a constant traveler it’s so important for me to be able to use my phone to write & upload blog posts while on the go.

So I’m testing the WordPress mobile app to see if it does the job!

Right now I’m sitting at home, I’ve turned my phone to airplane mode (as the chances are I’ll be writing & prepping posts while in between destinations on a plane), and am writing this post in the app.

I’m just going to add a random photo & some formatting to see what it looks like & then I’ll save & act as I’ve just got internet access and can now publish!

What fun! 😁 (Nice, emojis off the phone, like it!)

Ok random photo….

Hmmm seems I cannot add image unless I’m online. Will leave the draft image I have added & see what happens when I go online.

I also can’t access the WordPress media library while offline which makes sense, but that means I can’t prep any gallery photos etc.

Ok so pros & cons so far (just adding a random bullet point list);

  1. Easy to edit & add content
  2. Can use phone emojis
  3. Can add photos from phone but flashes up a notification it can’t load as offline so cannot edit, add captions etc.
  4. Can’t access media library while offline.

Ok so saving as draft now & then will turn off airplane mode & see what editing options are then available to me!

___________________________________________________________________

Ok so back online now.

Your Lifestyle Business

Random Buddha Image (from my walk yesterday)

Your Lifestyle Business

Random Test Image

Your Lifestyle Business

Random Beach Image

So there’s no function to add a gallery but I can align, add Alt Text, resize & add a caption.

So let’s see what happens when I publish! 😮

___________________________________________________________________________________

This is me back on my computer now editing directly within the wordpress app.

The formatting of the pics went a bit awry and I had to move the Buddha pic to a portrait position from here, could not do on the app.

However I couldn’t make it work here either until I had completely redone the bullet points. They hadn’t formatted correctly anyway and something within that formatting screwed up the images.

Lastly one of the images didn’t caption correctly, so I had to amend that.

Summary

The WordPress mobile app is great for basic posts without too much multi media or formatting required. Maybe a pic or two, but more than that I think it will start to do strange things.

Also images from the phone are uploaded max size, so you need to ensure you have an image compression plugin uploaded or all images will be served full size which is massive from a phone!

I’m going to continue looking for a better mobile app to update multi media posts on the go!

There is No Magic Pill – Make It Happen Monday Episode 86

“The shortcut is usually the longest route” – Seth Godin

Do you ever wish there was a magic pill that could help you achieve all your goals in one fell swoop?

A pill to instantly make you thin, gorgeous and fit…
A pill to transport you to exactly where you’d love to live…
A pill that would instantly ensure your bank account was full every month…

A pill, a genie, a fountain of youth, name it what you will but in some sense we all wish there was a faster and easier way to achieve some of our toughest goals.

Unfortunately it’s rarely the case and the longer you spend looking for shortcuts, the longer you’re potentially wasting the precious time you have to actually achieve your goals.

Watch todays video and ensure you’re doing what you need to be doing to create the life & business you truly want.

Jo :)

Watch Episode 86 Here

Please let me know in the comments below if you have any questions. I’m here to help!

Also, please share with your friends if you think this Make It Happen Monday episode has been useful and of course have an amazing week, live life on purpose and Make It Happen.

Thanks for watching!

Sunday Review

I had a thought this weekend about my goals and how I tend to set them and then life gets in the way and it can take me a while to actually sit down and review how I’m getting on.

By a while sometimes it feels like years slip by and I don’t seem to be achieving what I always set out to do.

So how about a weekly Sunday review, I thought?

Every Sunday, I would sit down and look at my goals for the week and measure my progress against them.

Here’s the crazy thing, when I sat down to think about the week gone by I realised I hadn’t actually set myself a goal for this week.

I have my yearly goal and where I’d like to be in a year from now, but what about a month from now or a week from now?

Aha! Perhaps there is the very issue! In my head I think I’ve set goals because I have a huge ‘To Do’ list. (I always have a huge ‘To Do’ list, I’m sure you can empathise with that!)

But I haven’t said, right – this is what I’d like to achieve this week which actually takes me closer to my bigger goals.

So here’s my goal for this coming week and next Sunday I’ll have a review of how I’ve got on.

“I would like to start using the ‘12 Week Year‘ system properly. So this week I am going to stop thinking in terms of a year and start thinking about the next 12 weeks.

I am going to set my 12 week goals and therefore my weekly goals to help me get there and have that written in a plan before next week.

I am also going to ensure I continue writing a Daily Blog post even though I know right now no-one is reading it!

It’s great practise and eventually, there’ll be thousands of readers!!!”

(By the way if you’re reading this, please comment below and say ‘Hi Jo, I’m a reader!’)

That’s it, they’re my goals for this week.

What are your goals for this week?

Be ready to review them next Sunday!

Addicted to Netflix

So a friend recommended a show on Netflix called You.

She described it as a guy who’s a murdering stalker who falls for this girl.

Delightful I said.

And yet, I couldn’t help sneaking an episode in to see what it was all about.

Now I’m hooked!

I hate getting hooked on Netflix shows. Game of Thrones, The Good Wife, Suits, Billions.

It’s such a waste of time, plus I always end up going to bed later.

Thankfully I don’t do it often.

Be sensible, just don’t start and do something far more productive with your time like reading or learning.

Now where’s that remote…..

Pinch, Punch, 1st of the Month!

Woweee, it’s the 1st Feb already!

How are you doing with your goals for this year?

Have you written them out and put them somewhere prominent? Have you whittled them down to the most important 2 or 3?

Perhaps you’re working off the 12 week year system and have just finished your 1st quarter!

However you’re managing your progress this year, be sure to stop and review at least at the end of each month if not each week to make sure you’re moving forward and heading in the right direction.

Success is more about momentum than anything else, so keep keeping on! 🙂

Hope you’ve had a great January and here’s to an amazing Feb!!! 🙂

You Don’t Need As Much As You Think You Do

The beauty of running a lifestyle business is that you can work your own hours around your lifestyle!

You’re not constantly stressed by overheads & wages & deadlines & investors etc.

Which means today I could enjoy the beach, the sunset, a beer and a nice relaxing day.

Tomorrow I will get my days work done before sunrise & be free again to enjoy the day.

Does that mean there aren’t days I work all day to get things done and organized? Absolutely not.

Building any kind of business requires hard work and dedication, but if you decide you want a ‘lifestyle business’ ie, a business that simply needs to fund your lifestyle as opposed to a multi million dollar startup. It really doesn’t need to be as hard as many make out.

The question is how much do you really need to fund the lifestyle you’d like to live?
$2000 a month, $5000, $10,000, a million?

Workout what that number is and understand that you probably don’t need as much as you think you do to live a very comfortable life doing something that you love. 🙂

How to Build a Tribe Using Facebook in 2019 – Summary

Facebook Groups

Lastly I just want to touch on groups, as that was one of the questions.

I have to admit the jury is out on groups at the moment.

I’ve used them to great effect as support forums for courses etc. But to grow a tribe on its own, seems like a lot of work when your efforts might be best placed on your main page.

The great thing about groups is that you can engage directly with your audience. But to get the group going you need to be in there every day posting interesting information, talking with the members and encouraging interaction.

Unfortunately FB doesn’t notify members when new postings have been made unless the members specifically ask it to. So the value add needs to so good that your members want to visit every day.

I’m not saying don’t do a group, but be careful with your time.

I’ll update this post as I explore more moving into 2019, my plan is to interview some very successful group owners and find out how they’re using groups for business.

Summary

A lot to take in I know.

I think the most important is to take action and don’t spread yourself too thin.

Create a Facebook page, get to know your target market intimately and start helping, entertaining or educating them with great content every single day.

Have fun with it and get creative!

Any questions please let me know below.

I hope this helps.

Jo 🙂

How to Build a Tribe Using Facebook in 2019 – Part 10

Part 10 – Don’t Sell – Entertain, Inform, Educate, Inspire, Showcase

Gosh this is a contentious one. I read so much about how you need to be a salesman with everything you do and yet some of the best salesmen in the world never sell.

They inform, entertain, educate, solve problems but rarely sell.

Think how Dove uses real body images to inspire the ‘average’ woman to buy its products.

Red Bull has firmly associated itself with extreme sport.

Gary Vee publishes copious amounts of content to highlight his agency, educate people on products he’s invested in and sell his books.

I’m going to be using travel stories to showcase a lifestyle business.

How you can you creatively showcase your products tied into an interest that your audience may have?

Years ago (1987) in the UK there was a series of adverts for Nescafe Gold Blend coffee. It was basically a love story between two neighbors over a series of ads, but the product for sale was coffee.

People (including me) were absolutely hooked by the story. It was like a mini series!

Check out a compilation of the story here;

It’s genius!

More recently you had The Lego Movie. That wasn’t just about merchandise, that was a revamp of a kids toy brand that’s been about for years! Again absolutely genius.

Now we can’t all go around making TV adverts & movies, but what’s your story?

How can you turn your product or service into something that will entertain, inform, educate or inspire your audience?

Food for thought…

Look out for my final part tomorrow. I’ll be having a quick chat about Facebook groups and wrapping up this little mini series on how to build your brand using FB in 2019.

Jo 🙂

3 Steps to Building Your Brand on Facebook in 2019 – Make It Happen Monday Episode 85

Todays episode was inspired by a question from a member of the YLB community who asked;

‘I want to build my brand and a tribe on Facebook this year but don’t know where to start. Can you help?’

To be honest, the posting on FB is the easy part, it’s figuring out all the stuff before you even set foot on the platform that can prove challenging and which may hold you off from posting.

That’s why the video that follows is really a blueprint for building your brand anywhere online, on social media and on your own website.

Get these 3 steps right and you’ll be well on your way to a successful facebook strategy.

I hope it helps!

Jo :)

Watch Episode 85 Here

Please let me know in the comments below if you have any questions. I’m here to help!

Also, please share with your friends if you think this Make It Happen Monday episode has been useful and of course have an amazing week, live life on purpose and Make It Happen.

Thanks for watching!

How to Build a Tribe Using Facebook in 2019 – Part 9

Part 9 – Invest in Ads
 
Ok so this is the one you probably don’t want to hear but is without doubt the fastest way to get your message out there!
 
Right now the advertising costs on Facebook & Instagram are still super low and anyone whop tells you different has obviously never advertised in newspapers, on TV or on radio.
 
When I used to manage concert venues in the late 90’s early 2000’s it would cost me thousands of pounds to advertise on local radio.
 
I would get a few 30 second spots that would then go out to a broad and undefined audience and I would never know whether my message had ever been acted upon.
 
The same for newspaper ads and billboard hoardings on the side of the road.
 
I remember we used to have feedback forms for all customers who came into our venues, asking them to tick a little box to tell us where they had heard of us so we could try to gather some rough data of where our marketing efforts were working.
 
These days on Facebook you can spend a few hundred dollars, reach hundreds of thousands of highly targeted people and get instant feedback on what’s working and what’s not.
 
You can reach them with text, image, video, audio, whatever resonates the most, which you instantly know from the stats!
 
Here’s how I would get started with FB Ads;
 
1. What’s my objective? To get more clicks on my site, more likes on my page, more people to click ’See My Page Posts First’, leads, sales etc. 
 
Don’t just advertise for the sake of it. Every dollar counts so know what it is you want to achieve.
 
2. Research what’s working for the audience you want to attract. No doubt there are other pages similar to yours. So go and see what’s working for them. Which posts get the most interaction. What seems to be encouraging people to comment etc.
 
Don’t be afraid to use what’s working well as inspiration and then create your own ads with that in mind. Never copy by the way, just get out there and get ideas.
 
3. Define your audience. Male / Female / Age / Location / Interests etc. Go narrow.
 
The broader your audience the bigger reach you’ll get but the lower actions will be taken. Try to get as narrow and as niched as possible. That way you’ll resonate far more with your audience and are likely to get much better results at a much lower cost.
 
4. If you already have an email list, create a custom audience and then a lookalike audience which will allow you to advertise directly to people with the same interests / demographics as your current audience.
 
5. Start with small budgets, $10, $50, $100, test & measure, test & measure, test & measure.
 
Success with FB Ads is all about testing, measuring & tweaking! Check out my good friend Liz Melville’s website for more info on creating ad campaigns that work!
 
Look out for Part 10 tomorrow – Don’t Sell – Entertain, Inform, Educate, Inspire, Showcase
 
Jo 🙂

How to Build a Tribe Using Facebook in 2019 – Part 8

Part 8 – See Me First
 
On FB pages there is a funky little button under ‘Following’ that says ’See First’. If you can encourage as many people as possible to click that little button then guess who’s posts they’ll see first in their newsfeed every day?
 
The best way I’ve seen this done is by Gary Vee who recorded a little video of himself asking the viewer to click the button to see his posts first in their newsfeed.
 
I fully intend to create my own video doing the same but for now, you could take a screenshot of your page, add some annotations and start posting it across FB or your site.
 
I’m going to be sending mine out in an email. If I can encourage my subscribers to interact with my page, they may be more inclined to share / spread the word.
 
How to Build a Tribe on FB - 2019
 
Look out for Part 9 tomorrow – Invest in Ads
 
Jo 🙂

Sometimes We Have Bad Days

Sometimes we all have bad days.
 
Days where nothing seems to go right or your energy levels aren’t there or something p’d you off early in the day and you can’t talk yourself out of it.
 
You know what I’m talking about.
 
And so it is.
 
We’re only human after all!
 
Don’t beat yourself up. 
 
Perhaps we’re having a bad day to remind us how great, the great days are!
 
Reframe, chill out, grab a cuppa and put it down to experience.
 
Tomorrow will be better.
 
Jo :)

How to Build a Tribe Using Facebook in 2019 – Part 7

Part 7 – Engage
 
So you’re out there, you’re posting regular content, you’re adding huge value, you’re interesting, you’re vibrant, quite simply your content is awesome!
 
So why does it still feel like a ghost town around your FB page?
 
It’s a great question.
 
I’ve been having a look at some of the best blogs and pages online and those with the most activity follow a similar system;
 
1. They post consistently, whether that be once a day or 5 times a day they’re consistent about it.
2. The posts are regularly engaged with by either the page / blog owner or a member of their team.
3. They post content which encourages engagement either with subtle call to actions or within the content itself (examples below)
4. They’ve been doing it a while and probably started just like you are wondering why their FB page was a ghost town!
 
Consistency & Persistence trumps anything and everything!
 
Here’s some examples of great content pieces which encourage you to interact even if you weren’t planning too!
 

Gary always says it like it is and evokes emotive and passionate discussion

Marie asks questions in her description of the video which will make you react one way or another and want to see more…

Seth chooses emotive subjects that he knows his audience will react too. I love his take on every day events.

Marie takes a great quote, makes it relevant to her brand “figureoutable”) and adds a not so subtle call to action – ‘Let me know and tag someone else’. Great strategy.

Please remember point 4. It’s not going to happen overnight unless you choose a potentially explosive subject.

Keep producing and publishing interesting and engaging content. Reach out to people where you can on twitter, instagram, facebook. Start conversations wherever you can and cross promote between FB, Instagram, your site etc.

Have patience and your audience will grow.

 
Look out for Part 8 tomorrow – See me First
 
Jo 🙂

How to Build a Tribe Using Facebook in 2019 – Part 6

Part 6 – Create, Repurpose, Automate
 
It would be great if we could all start with a big team of people who could edit our content, create fab pictures, edit & upload super professional videos, post regularly on all the social networks and ensure we were everywhere all of the time.
 
But this is just not reality when you start out.
 
So you need to use your time & online tools to your advantage.
 
I talked about this in Part 3, and shared with you a great post by Gary Vee. But for the one or two man band we need to smart with our time to achieve a mini version of our own content strategy.
 
Here’s how I’m tackling it this year;
 
Content Strategy for FB
Content Strategy for FB
 
 
So my core content will be;
 
1 x Make It Happen Monday Video per week
Short Daily Blog Posts
1 x Podcast a week
 
These might be separate pieces of content or I may extract the audio from MIHM and make that my podcast or write several daily posts based on a podcast episode etc.
 
I will then use the content I have created to make some quote style images for social media, edit some short segments of my videos, clip some interesting bits of my podcast to post out on mainly FB & Insta.
 
I use screenflow for mac for editing my videos, anchor.fm for recording & uploading my podcasts & canva.com for editing images. (Not affiliate links)
 
Screenflow is paid, anchor.fm & canva.com are both free.
 
Yes there’s a bit of a learning curve to use screenflow and canva, but they’re all pretty user intuitive and millions of tutorial videos all over youtube!
 
Lastly regards posting on social media, you can now schedule posts directly on FB, so you can load up an entire weeks worth of posts on a Sunday afternoon and as long as you have a business profile on Instagram you can schedule posts there too, using a tool like Buffer (my preferred tool) or Hootsuite.
 
NB! This is super important. If you only have the time to create 1 video a week or 1 blog post a week or 1 podcast a week and nothing else. That is fine as long as it’s consistent! 
 
The most important part of creating content is publishing consistently. In fact there’s definitely an argument for posting 1 epic piece of content a week rather than lots of smaller, less researched pieces, but you need to do what works for you. Weekly vids & short daily posts work for my rather distracted, generally unfocused personality.
 
Do what works for you, but do it consistently.
 
Look out for Part 7 tomorrow – Engage
 
Jo 🙂

What To Do When You Don’t Know What To Do – Make It Happen Monday Episode 84

So you know you want to build a business or side income that will give you more time, freedom, independence etc, but you’re just not sure what to do.

Do you start a blog around your passion, should you give ecommerce a go, do you become a freelancer or a service provider?

You have varying levels of skill in each arena from zero knowledge to fairly confident but which one will make the most money, give you the most fulfillment, be the easiest to get off the ground etc?

The answer my friend is in todays video.

Watch Episode 84 Here

Please let me know in the comments below if you have any questions. I’m here to help!

Also, please share with your friends if you think this Make It Happen Monday episode has been useful and of course have an amazing week, live life on purpose and Make It Happen.

Thanks for watching!

How to Build a Tribe Using Facebook in 2019 – Part 5

Part 5 – Be Interesting!
 
We are undoubtedly in a ‘content’ era. People are looking to be distracted, entertained, educated and inspired.
 
You may think that there is information overload out there, and you’re probably not wrong but still people are ready & willing to consume anything that resonates with their journey or status at that very moment.
 
The days of brand loyalty are fading fast and have been replaced with ‘are you interesting enough to keep my attention’!
 
Just this morning I watched a video made by Ezra Firestone from Smart Marketer and probably the most prolific ecommerce expert online today, about ‘Heartbreak’!
 
Not because it resonated with me right now but because it was so apart from his usual content it caught my eye.
 
Last week I saw Gary Vee advise a women in financial services (I think it was financial services, something like that) to start creating content around golf! 
 
Why golf? Well who is really that interested in financial services? Create interesting content around a common interest and then introduce your services along the way.
 
I know, abstract right?
 
Yesterday I spent a few hours watching videos on how to create ‘awesome travel videos’. My brand is all about teaching you how to build a lifestyle business and I’m trying to think of all the ways I can make my content more ‘consumable’ – in other words, more entertaining, more inspiring etc.
 
So, whatever brand or niche you are in, you need to be asking yourself, how can I entertain, inspire, inform, solve problems etc, and be prepared to get a bit whacky!
 
Look out for Part 6 tomorrow – Create, Repurpose, Automate
 
Jo 🙂

How to Build a Tribe Using Facebook in 2019 – Part 4

Part 4 – Get Yourself Out There!
 
Oh my! Another ‘inaction through fear’ moment.
 
You know you need to network. You know you need to be ’seen’, and you’d love to be on texting terms with some of the big names in your industry, but why on earth would they give you the time of day?
 
Not only that, who’s got the time to go commenting on other people’s posts etc when you have all your own content to create.
 
Well I hate to tell you, but this is a super important strategy that if done well, will get you and your products / services further much faster.
 
So here’s some fear friendly suggestions to get you started;
 
1. Be so good they can’t ignore you!
 
I love this quote from actor Steve Martin. Just aim to be awesome at everything you do. The content you publish, the value you add, the products or services you sell.
 
In fact print this off & stick it somewhere prominent.
 
be so good they can't ignore you
 
 
NB: If it’s a choice between posting one amazing blog post a year or posting fairly good articles once a week, choose fairly good.
 
Consistency will create solid habits & ensure you improve as you go. It won’t be long before you’re regularly posting amazing content and you will have started to gain traction while getting there.
 
2. Stop aiming so high!
 
Many times the reason we’re afraid to network or connect with others in our niche is because we start trying to connect with those at the top of their game.
 
Start with others who are around your level or just a few clicks ahead. Everyone is open to quality connections and content so get to know the people you want to approach and offer them some value, whether it’s content, guest posts, links to their content from your social media pages, whatever it is you think you can offer.
 
3. Be inclusive (another Mari Smith special).
 
If you notice I have lots of links going to all sorts of external resources from my posts. That’s because I want to ensure you get the most value out of my advice and that includes resources I have turned to or consumed which I believe can also help you.
 
Don’t be scared that by linking to others content or recommending other people / brands in your same niche means you’ll send people away from you. By being the most helpful you can be, people will return to you time after time.
 
Look out for Part 5 tomorrow – Be Interesting!
 
Jo 🙂

How to Build a Tribe Using Facebook in 2019 – Part 3

Part 3 – Become a Prolific Content Creator
 
How I love this advice I got from the lovely Mari Smith years ago!
 
To build a tribe using social media you’re going to need content and a lot of it!
 
Videos, images, audio, blogs, posts, FB Lives, stories etc.
 
And this is where the rubber meets the road I’m afraid. This is the section of the mountain that so many are unwilling to climb.
 
The common excuses are lack of time, platform overwhelm, lack of knowledge etc. But the real reason behind much of it is fear.
 
I don’t want to go too deep into that here. But next time you find yourself saying in your head – “I don’t know what to post!”, catch yourself and ask the question – do I really not know what to post, or actually do I truly deep down know what I want to say but I’m worried that I’ll be rubbish on camera, no-one will listen, I’ll get trolled etc.
 
And if you truly don’t know what to say, you might want to re-look at the niche you’re in.
 
The king of content online right now is undoubtedly Gary Vaynerchuk.
 
He recently published his phenomenal content strategy which you can see here – The GaryVee Content Model
 
By all means get inspiration from it but please remember he has a big & experienced team to help him implement so don’t look at this as a blueprint for little old you to follow and then completely overwhelm yourself into inaction.
 
If you’re a one or two man band, my advice would be to pick one or two platforms and focus on those.
 
Then replicate a smaller version of his strategy;
 
1. Create a main piece of ‘pillar’ content each week 
2. Distribute
3. Create micro content from that – social media posts, images, bite size videos etc
3. Distribute 
4. Listen to feedback and create further micro content based on audience response.
 
You can skip No 4 if to start with you have no audience response. Just keep publishing valuable content and have faith! 😎
 
(Please note I do go into this in a bit more detail in Part 6)
 
Look out for Part 4 tomorrow – Get Yourself Out There!
 
Jo 🙂

How to Build a Tribe Using Facebook in 2019 – Part 2

Part 2 – Know What You’re Talking About or Add Huge Value!
 
I know the questions in Part 1 were specific to building a tribe on facebook but so much of the work happens before you even create your facebook account!
 
It’s imperative that you either know your subject matter inside out or you’re willing to document your journey and offer massive value.
 
When I started out I knew nothing about facebook fan pages, but I chose to immerse myself in the platform and teach others (for free) as I learned.
 
This learning grew (as did my community) to social media as a whole, online marketing, ecommerce and now I have enough experience to cover the whole shebang!
 
Another great example of this is Pat Flynn from Smart Passive Income. From Day 1 he’s openly documented his journey to create a passive income online including monthly income & expense reports.
 
What’s important though is that he did the work. He learned how something worked, implemented it and reported on the results.
 
So many people have no idea what they’re taking about and just regurgitate other peoples information. That will not build you a tribe.
 
Either you’re already an expert in your space and have plenty of valuable things to say or you’re willing to dig deep, do the work and learn & teach as you go.
 
Look out for Part 3 tomorrow – Become a Prolific Content Creator
 
Jo 🙂

How to Build a Tribe Using Facebook in 2019 – Part 1

I recently received two very similar questions from members of my community;
 
1. I am looking to learn how to use a business page on Facebook, build a tribe with a group page and how to utilize both
 
2. I have about 2300 friends on facebook and am starting an art/craft business. What is the best way of using facebook as a platform to sell on and get all of my friends to look at my products?
 
I remember the days when it was as easy as slapping a post up and getting hundreds of views & comments, but nowadays you either have to pay for that privilege or build a huge audience of people who see your notifications first in their newsfeed every day.
 
Facebook in particular has changed quite dramatically over the years but is still a power house for marketing & audience building.
 
So here’s how I’m going to be approaching it over the next year or so. I’m splitting this post into parts as it’s a pretty long answer, so look out for Part 2 tomorrow. 🙂
 
1. Know Who You’re Talking Too
 
It doesn’t matter the size of your business or budget you must start with who you’re trying to reach.
 
Having a good idea of who your market are will help you when it comes to branding, publishing content etc. You’ll know what language to use, what videos to post, what images will appeal etc.
 
I had a conversation with a friend recently in the fitness industry who said they wanted to reach professionals and the youth.
 
They’re clearly two different markets and would take some work to target at the same time, but as we discussed, get the professional parents and they’ll feed it down to the youth!
 
See how we just narrowed down our market to professionals and parents. If you wanted you could go a step further and say only men, or only woman, or professionals over 40, or in certain industries etc.
 
But there’s no need to get too bogged down as long as you have a solid idea of your rough demographic.
 
Whatever you do, don’t fall into the trap of trying to please everyone. You will reach more people by narrowing it down and being reasonably specific.
 
Believe me if your products are good enough, everyone will find you, even if you’re not targeting them.
 
So take a moment to decide who you’re targeting with your message, brand, service or product and then write it down!
 
Look out for Part 2 tomorrow – Know What You’re Talking About!
 
Jo 🙂

Stop Worrying About What Other People Think of You – Make It Happen Monday Episode 82

It does not matter what you do. Whether you are the nicest person in the world, or the most awful person in the world, you will get trolled when you start publishing content across the web.

It is a sad fact of life that many of the population have nothing better to do with their time than sit online and make nasty comments.

I often think to myself, how sad and lonely they must be.

However, we cannot allow the fear of what a stranger might say or a friend might think to stop us from pursuing our goals.

I get quite passionate about it in todays Make It Happen Monday episode and at one point made myself laugh out loud as I watched the video back.

I hope it has the same effect on you.

Watch Episode 83 Here

Now It’s Your Turn

Comment below and tell me;

  1. What have you been holding yourself back from due to the fear of what someone else might think or say?
  2. How could you change how you feel and get out there and do it anyway!?

Please get into as much nitty gritty detail as you like as your comment could be the spark of inspiration someone else reading this needs!

Thank you so much for your openness & honesty!

Jo :)

Also, please share with your friends if you think this Make It Happen Monday episode has been useful and of course have an amazing week, live life on purpose and Make It Happen.

Thanks for watching!

Act on Commitments, Not Feelings

“I really want to workout this morning but after a crappy nights sleep I don’t feel like it. I’ll do it tomorrow.”
 
“I’m not supposed to have a slice or two of the pizza, but my body is telling me I need carbs, so I’m going for it. I’ll be good tomorrow.”
 
“I’m so tired I can’t write that blog post today, so I’ll do it tomorrow when I feel better.”
 
Hmmmm, sentences I think many of us can relate too.
 
The trouble is tomorrow never comes!
 
Decide what it is you want. Commit to your goals. Write down your plans & strategies to achieve your goals and then ACT.
 
No matter how you feel, no matter what’s happened. 
 
There will always be an excuse or a reason we don’t feel like it.
 
We have to just do it anyway.
 
You have committed, so act on your commitments.
 
Have a great weekend!
 
Jo 🙂

January 12, 2019

Be a Doer Not a Talker

My Mum, now 80, used to tell me when I was younger, ‘Jo, I’m a doer and your father is a dreamer’, you’ve luckily managed to get a bit of both.’
 
She was so right!
 
I’m a huge dreamer but thankfully I’m an action taker also (although I can procrastinate with the best of them!)
 
10 years ago I met a man who would take ‘doing’ to a new level. My gorgeous fella (who I’m set to marry next year by the way), is like a machine when it comes to doing.
 
By the time I’ve explained to him an idea, he’s usually put it into action.
 
I remember attending an internet marketing event in London back in 2010, and some friends of ours who lived in Cyprus were going traveling and wanted someone to housesit their apartment for 6 weeks.
 
I phoned my action taking fella and mooted the idea with him.
 
By the Sunday night when I got back he’d put all our belongings on sale on gumtree (UK equivalent of Craigs list) and within a week we were on a plane to Cyprus.
 
We haven’t looked back since and together we have traveled the world (with our daughter), now live in Phuket and have built two very successful location independent businesses.
 
Most people talk.
 
It’s the people that do, that have all the luck. Go figure!
 
Be a doer, not a talker.
 
Jo :)

January 11, 2019

The 12 Week Year

I’ve just read a book (well listened to it) called The 12 Week Year.
 
I love the concept and that is to stop looking at your goals and plans as an annualized process and start looking at them as a 12 week process.
 
Very important – the 12 weeks is not simply a part of a 12 month plan, it’s a plan in and of itself.
 
So you literally set goals for 12 weeks from now, then break them down into weekly & daily goals within the 12 weeks and work towards achieving your 12 week goals.
 
I love it!
 
It gives your tasks more of a sense of urgency, it’s a smaller, more manageable timeframe (who knows what we’ll be doing in a year from now) and this morning after sitting down and planning out my next 12 weeks it’s clear that it will dramatically increase focus.
 
Here’s the link to it on Amazon (not an affiliate link).
 
The 12 Week Year
 
 
Check it out and see what you think.
 
Have a great day!
 
“Super productive’ Jo 🙂

January 10, 2019

Have you really tried everything?

I’ve been on a health journey for the last 3 years.
 
After years of sitting on my butt building my business, eating too much, drinking too much and not moving, I hit a wall at the end of 2015 and decided something had to change.
 
I started a 30 day yoga program on youtube which I followed religiously every morning in front of the TV (still do today), packed up the grog, changed my diet and successfully lost 37lbs in 2016.
 
I still had another 40lbs to go to hit goal weight (yep I had put on that much weight over the years) and so continued my journey into 2017 & beyond.
 
In fact fitness is now so much a part of my life I would never go back. I have more energy, feel better, am more productive and am much happier.
 
In the last 2 years I have become a Zumba Instructor, trained and took part in a Spartan tough mudder, and am now training for a 700km charity bike ride.
 
I must be a size 8 right?
 
Well despite all my hard work, in the last 2 years I haven’t shifted a pound. Not 1. Nada.
 
I have tried low carb, high fat, high protein, veggie, soups, intermittent fasting, slimming world, weight watchers – you name it, I have tried it.
 
My partner gets it in the neck from me all the time – ‘I’ve tried everything and nothing works!’
 
I have honestly never in my life worked so hard for something for so long with such limited results.
 
Then last night an already toned and slim friend came by even slimmer and more toned. She’d gone from 62kg’s to 56kg’s and had a backside you could break a spoon over.
 
She sent me a link to a guy she follows on Instagram and I instantly bought his ebook and signed up for his 12 week program.
 
I haven’t tried everything and I won’t stop until I reach my goal, no matter how long it takes.
 
Over the years, I have heard so many people say the same thing about their business. I’ve tried everything and nothing works.
 
But have you? Have you really tried everything??
 
There is always another way. The question is are you prepared to keep hustling even if it takes a lot longer than you originally thought or planned?
 
Have a great day!
 
Jo ‘The Body’ Barnes 🙂

 

January 9, 2019

Love this layout, thinking of changing the whole blog!

My goal last year was to create a post a day.

I failed within a day!

My goal this year is to create a post a day and so far 8 days in, I’ve been successful. Why?

Because this ‘Jo’s Musings’ layout really lends itself to small, fast, daily insights which make it super easy for me to post every day.

In fact I like it so much, I’m thinking of changing my entire blog to just this. A continuous stream of smaller posts without featured images, the need to click through and all the sign up gubbins at the bottom of every post.

So let’s look at the pros and cons;

Pros

  • It allows me to easily post every day which I’m really enjoying
  • This means I can get more content out there and help more people
  • I can easily post my Make It Happen Monday videos (see yesterdays post), my podcasts, valuable articles and everything I would usually do on a blog post.
  • Visitors can read right from one page just scrolling down without clicking anywhere, which is fabulous for mobile phones, bandwidth, waiting times etc
  • Without featured images there will be less images which will speed up the site (always a bonus)
  • It’s super user friendly! 🙂

Cons

  • It won’t be as SEO friendly – less inter-site links, smaller posts etc, but I’ve never really got my head around SEO anyway and there are a multitude of ways to attract people to your site – user friendliness being a major one!
  • I can have comments, but they somehow need to be slightly hidden behind a ‘click here to comment’ button or they’ll take up too much of the page (when I start getting some decent engagement!)
  • I can’t have related posts or my sign up here to get my ebook image at the bottom of each post, again would take up too much space (but I could easily have an unobtrusive link to my ebook at the bottom of each post, plus it’ll force me to be more creative on social media to get people to sign up)

Hmmm, food for thought.

What do you think? Do you like this layout or longer separate posts?

Come and join my facebook group and let me know! (It’s also where I do all my training for how to start & grow your lifestyle business, so it’s well worth joining!)

Other than that keep your eye on my blog for potential imminent changes!

Have a great day!

Jo 🙂

 

January 8, 2019

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