This year hasn't been kind. Honestly, it hasn't been kind to many of us financially, and it's definitely taken its toll on me and my family. Then summer break started and we are officially at that point of 'ready to go back'.
My mind has been literally everywhere and nowhere all at once and it's not easy. People constantly say "Misty, I don't know how you do it! You are amazing!". Psst, I don't have a clue either! I'm here taking it the best I can, one day at a time.
If you've been here, or are constantly here, that's OK! Give yourself the same compassion you'd give others [Good Video for You!].
Now for the real topic!
When these down turns happen, it's important to be prepared. Admittedly, I'm not as prepared as I should be and what I teach, but, as the saying goes: Do as I teach?? 😅
What should I prepare for?
- Mental health - Yes, this is at the top of my list because, while many of us struggle with it on the daily, this is something every single person will struggle with at some point in their life. It's important to take steps to make sure that you have a good chunk of your needs and responsibilities met when this happens. Things like scheduling emails/posts, making sure a trusted person has access to log-in information and a canned response for customers. And, of course, have at least one person that you can lean on if needed. It's ok to need help, and it's ok to not know how or what to ask. (National Suicide Prevention Hotline in case things get really bad: 800-273-8255)
- Natural disasters - I feel like I've spent most of my life in an area that has earthquakes, hurricanes, or tornadoes and having been in all three, it makes a person think. Did you know that one of the safest places in your home is the clothes dryer? That thing is sturdy and pretty hard to move, so when the warning sirens would go off, I would toss my laptop and important documents in there (and cloth diapers....). Come up with and know the plan!
- Computer issues - I'm a computer un-aliver. I've had to say that final goodbye to many and I've FINALLY trained myself (mostly) to store everything on an external harddrive and I use Google Drive like a Google-phile. This goes well with natural disasters too.
- Family changes - Some changes within the family structure can be planned, and, others, not so much. If you foster, you know, first hand, the affect these unplanned changes can have. If you've experienced death (yes, even the loss of a pet), you know, first hand, the affect these unplanned changes have too. Do you have a plan in place for such events? What about your own death? While we'd all love to continue until we decide we're done, that's not always the case. Like mental health, it's important to have someone that has access to important information about your business so that they can cancel subscriptions, file the last taxes, close the business, refund/ship out orders, and give a final farewell to your followers.
What can I do?
- Insurance. Yes, it can get costly, but no, you don't have to have insurance for everything. You want to assess the risk to your business and family, then go from there. If you live in an area that has high risk for forest fires, you probably want to look for a commercial insurance that will cover your equipment and inventory. There is also insurance available for times of unemployment (outside of unemployment from the government).
- Life insurance policies. Similar to insurance, life insurance policies can help immensely. Did you know that you can get life insurance policies and other official paperwork done for yourself, your kids, AND your pets? Definitely worth looking into.
- Back up everything. I might be a bit overzealous here, but I do tend to keep everything. I still have taxes from my first year of college (2003 if anyone is counting). I even have both QB for automatic income/expense tracking AND a spreadsheet that I fill out manually for income/expense tracking.
Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). This is not something that needs to be super in depth and difficult, even though the name suggests it. This is simply an instructional paper that tells the reader, step-by-step, what to do for a specific task.
- Automations. You don't have to try to automate *everything*, but it can be extremely helpful to do what you can. Many of my emails after you purchase from my shop are automated, for example and, in most email programs, you can schedule emails to be sent after a certain time condition has been met or after a certain tag has been added or removed.
At the end of the day, you want to make sure you have a way to tie up any loose ends or automate things to work while you are unable. What that looks like will be different for everyone, but it's important to have something.
Did you find this post helpful?
Please do feel free to share this blog post!