We’re all aware of what’s happening around us.
We’re faced with two realities right now: a pandemic and a recession. It’s quite the 2-for-1 sale! (It’s not funny, but I have to find reasons to laugh.)
😂 Important: I’ll be using a little bit of colorful language in this so if you are offended with that, do not keep reading. (No f-bombs)
Here are my thoughts about how to pivot right now.
If I see one more post or email talking about mastering your energy, or making $100k in the next four months, or manifesting from the comfort of your living room, I’m going to either take up day drinking (too late, already done that – sort of kidding) or bitch-slap someone. 😉
I’ve been gathering resources. Paying attention. Observing. And getting my energy more grounded and until now I haven’t had a whole lot of wisdom to share.
I first want to acknowledge that our businesses and personal lives will be impacted differently but it impacts all of us. Every human on the planet is being affected right now. You may not be reacting or triggered, but this affects all of us even from the basic level of you acknowledging that there is some shit happening right now.
You don’t have to be at the effect of all of this but we’re all aware.
My day-to-day life hasn’t changed much other than the shit-show of emotions I experience and the big energy I perceive moment to moment.
Other than that, my life doesn’t look different. Actually, that’s not true, I’ve spent way too much time on my phone and I’m now getting back into a more healthy routine.
You might be home-schooling special needs kids while running a business. You might be battling anxiety and depression. You may have just lost a pet or a loved one.
Life continues to roll even when the world is collectively experiencing this stuff right now.
There is a huge spectrum of things to consider, along with a huge spectrum of emotions to go with this.
So please feel what you are feeling. You are not any less enlighted or masterful if you are having a shit-show of emotions.
If you feel the pressure to be positive and “the strong one,” I promise you that the world won’t fall apart if you let yourself “fall apart.”
When we let ourselves “fall apart,” we shed the pieces and parts that we’ve held together so tightly that it’s time to let them go.
But damn, it’s scary to do that. I get it.
If you fear that if you fall apart then you may stay in that dark abyss for longer than what’s useful, I assure you that you won’t stay stuck there.
It may force you to ask for help and let someone see the raw messy self and I promise you, we can handle it. We love you when life is a shit show and when it’s awesomely amazing. We got you!
(“We” is the community around you, whether you are aware of them or not)
Part 1: Let’s get to brass tacks with what you need to do to pivot your business
- This pivot may simply be adjusted messaging to let people know that we are in this together.
- The pivot may be around your self-care to keep you out of the fear storm that can feel very real.
- A pivot may be a completely new offering or a way to deliver that offering.
- It may mean pausing offers for the time being.
- Another pivot may be to ask for things that you’ve never asked for.
- Or using your savings to pay for things if you don’t have the customers you’re used to having. (If you have savings.)
- Or leveraging credit you have to keep things running for the time being.
1. Know your numbers.
What is the absolute minimum required to keep your doors open right now? Know that number. Assume that you’re paying everything you’ve been paying.
If you’ve been avoiding your numbers, now is a good time to start no matter how scary that may be.
The second round of numbers I want you to get is if you reduced payments or removed services you don’t need.
For example, can you share a Zoom account with someone right now? Can you downgrade any subscriptions you’re on? Can you pause something?
Not that you will choose to do any of those things, but what are your options?
Now that you know the exact number that you need to feed your family and keep your doors open, is there a gap between what you have to cover expenses and what you need?
If so, what is that number? Write it down. Freak out. Cry. Celebrate. But now you know what the number is and it’s not a fictional scenario. Now you can do something about it.
2. Now it’s time to innovate.
What can you offer and sell to make up that number? For example, if you need $1,000 to cover rent and payroll this month, then commit to creating that.
Let’s JUST look at the immediate need to get you out of the, “oh shit” energy and once you get that need met, you’ll create a longer-term plan.
A local raw juice company in Utah just announced that they are selling produce baskets and they’ll even deliver them. GENIUS idea – people aren’t buying as much $7-10 bottles of juice, but they are responding to an immediate need of people who are self-quarantined and need to buy food and they probably have a shit-ton of produce that they’ve already paid for and don’t want to go bad.
A local book store is asking people to buy a book and they will ship it for free. They are also asking people to buy gift certificates and when they redeem the certificate, they add 25% additional amount to it. They posted a picture of the bookstore owner in the post and I loved this because I know I’m supporting a real person.
If you have a salon, ask people to buy gift certificates NOW to use later. Even in $10-$25 increments. Same for massage therapists and healers.
If you are a yoga or pilates studio, sell punch passes for a reduced rate to attend online classes. Talk about the benefits of keeping your community going and the power of a live instructor vs a recording. Offer incentives. If you have a staff of instructors, then ask them each to donate five private 30-minute sessions and when people buy a punch pass for ten classes, they get a free private session.
If you are a studio or salon owner and you have instructors or stylists who work under in your facility, ask your team to get innovate with you and DO NOT take all of the burden on yourself. Ask your team to co-create with you. Yes, you might be their employer, but they are also the creator of their abundance – some of that has just happened to come through your business.
3. Explore other money-making and expense-reducing options
Options may be:
- Calling your credit cards and asking about hardship plans. Many credit card companies are delaying payments and interest.
- If you have rent, lease, mortgage – call and see what options there are. Same for car loans.
- Look into small-business loans and grants. (I’m working on getting a list of these resources for you.)
- Collect on any past-due invoices you’re due. (Don’t assume that people can’t pay.)
- Sell things around your house.
- Offer a flash sale
- Do any follow-up with prospects
The mere act of exploring these things is to let your mind know that you have options.
You always have options. You can choose to not pay your rent or your mortgage. Yes, it’s a choice. Maybe it’s not a choice you want to make and I recommend doing everything you can to create the funds and to pay it. But know that you have CHOICES.
Then with all of the information in front of you, it’s time to make some choices.
4. THE MOST IMPORTANT THING YOU CAN DO AS THE BUSINESS OWNER IS TO ASK!!!! ASK MORE THAN WHAT YOU ARE COMFORTABLE WITH. YOU ARE NOT BEING A BURDEN AND INSENSITIVE.
Example of that message to your community could be:
Wow! We’ve been a part of this community for ____ years and we are committed to remaining a part of this community.
We know that life as we knew it is changing drastically. We’re in this with you.
With the uncertainty of when this pandemic will be over and the impact that has had on our economy, I know that by reaching out for support and giving where we can, we’ll rise up together and get through this.
Here is our plan to stay a vibrant part of your life and our collective community:
[talk about why you are excited to give value, make your offer here and make it easy for people to pay online]
We understand there are a lot of fears happening right now and a little bit can go a long way. We are inviting you to support us so we can continue to support you long after this is over.
We understand that this is looking different right now and we’re navigating the day-to-day changes right alongside you. Thank you for your trust in us and for letting us be a part of what you have to look forward to when we ride this wave together.
[your name here]
Don’t use pity or have people feel bad for you. Give people a reason to be excited to contribute to you.
Now, back to the choices you can make: It’s important to make choices from a place of calm and trust. Before you take action on any of these things above, let’s check in with your energy.
Part 2: Boost your Vibe Then Choose
Let’s get your energy to a place of remembering that you are whole, abundant and continue to be a powerful creator of your reality. (You can do the energy piece first if you want.)
1. Don’t assume that everyone is broke and panicking.
There are a lot of people whose financial situations with their monthly cash flow has not changed.
If that’s all your seeing, get off Facebook and the news. And if you have people around you who are all about the doom and gloom, give it a rest. Take care of your mental health right now and don’t answer the phone.
There is only so much information you can assimilate and ponder.
2. Allow yourself to be in the energy you’re experiencing
Are you in fear? Are you angry? Are you worried or sad?
Honor it all. Just take a breath and say each emotion out loud. “I notice I am feeling _______.” Another breath. And go through all of it and name it out loud.
When we can name it, we can shift it.
(Notice I didn’t say sit in the judgment of anything you feeling. Judging the emotions is a trap to keep you there.)
2. Are you open to the possibilities?
If you are sure that the world is going to hell in a handbasket and we’re all along for the ride then it’s going to be hard to see other possibilities. (I say this from the person who has been in absolute WTF panic in the last week.)
If you’re not open to any other possibilities but doom and gloom, I don’t have any useful words or tips for you. I truly don’t.
If you are open to other possibilities, including things working out better than you could have imagined, then, keep reading this long-ass post. 👍
3. In all seriousness, this step is ONLY if you are not in a manic state or are struggling with your mental health right now.
Explore what’s the worst that can happen?
(oh sweet Jesus, I know this can open Pandora’s box with intrusive thinking and anxiety so hear me out, please.)
This may sound a bit insane, but let yourself go to the worst-case scenario for a moment.
If you’re in a volatile place to explore this, then have a friend sit with you in this space or skip it altogether if your mental health can’t do this. I understand and please trust yourself with this one. If you can’t do it, then don’t.
If you can, just let yourself be with this for a few minutes.
What emerges from this is you identify what you’re really afraid of and it’s typically not as major as you thought.
Use these four questions: What will happen if that happens? What’s so bad about that? Is that true? What else is possible here?
“I’m afraid I won’t be able to pay my rent and then I’ll have to close my business permanently.”
What’s so bad about that? “Then I’m a loser and I’ll have to close my store. I’ll let people down. I’ll have to let people go.”
What happens if you close your store? “Then I’ll really suck and never get ahead. I’ll have failed. I won’t have an income for me or my family. Then we’ll be homeless.”
Is that true? “I’m afraid it could happen, but I don’t know for sure that this is true. I’ve overcome dips in my business before and I got through it.”
What else is possible here? “I could talk to my landlord and create a win/win. If they don’t have any options for me, I’ll go to the next option.”
What’s the likelihood of your worst-case scenario happening?
Do you believe in your ability to get creative and innovative to create beyond the worst-case scenario?
When you see yourself through the experience, you’ll also see that you get through it.
Reflect on any hardships you have had in the past. You have a positive track record of surviving hard times. That moment when you didn’t know if you could breathe again because the grief was too intense or the trauma was too deep, you found a new way to breathe. You got through it. You are incredibly tenacious.
This is where you give yourself the pep talk and you build that courage muscle. (And yes, I know you might be fucking exhausted already. You’re also allowed to rest, even if it feels that is impossible to do right now.)
4. What can you do to get into the vibration of feeling good?
If you are in a place of surviving right now, all I’m asking for is 30 seconds to shift your vibration. Start where you can.
If you are able to explore what feels good, do it.
Is there a hobby you enjoy? Do you need to take a bath? Can you take just two minutes and start writing things down that you’re grateful for? Do you need a good ol’ cry?
When you can shift your energy, THEN make choices about your business, you’ll activate choices based in possibility vs fear.
5. Breathe and move your body
We store a lot of energy in our bodies and when we move, we open up space in us and around us to receive insight and abundance on other levels. Maybe you’ll get that idea.
6. Choose and take action
Now that you’ve gone through these steps, you have some options and choices to make. Get on it. And who would have ever thought that the bonus would be having toilet paper? 😉
Lastly, a friend of mine shared this on social media years ago and it stuck with me: Do you believe in a benevolent universe?
Yes I do. And it never shows up the way we think it will.
Heads Up and Hearts Open,
P.S. If you’re curious what benevolent means, here you go:
a: marked by or disposed to doing good \ b: organized for the purpose of doing good
“Benevolent” can be traced back to Latin bene, meaning “good,” and velle, meaning “to wish.”