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How I close out my year as a small biz owner



(as a craft fair curator, podcast host, designer with a team of 5)


If there’s one thing I absolutely know, is that you’ll be a better business owner (and human) if you take a long break at the end of the year (or really whenever you can fit it in your schedule). It is a privilege to take a long break, and I personally plan to take 3 weeks this year. That doesn’t mean I am ideally sitting around the entire time (although I plan to do much of that and have ordered a few

new puzzles to dive into) but unstructured rest time gives me THE BEST IDEAS. So if you’re a productive queen, and need a reason to SIT TF DOWN, this is it–resting allows new creative juices to flow and you’ll have some of your best ideas. 


But, you don’t actually need a reason to rest, besides that you should rest. 


As Trica Hersey says,


Treating each other and ourselves with care isn't a luxury, but an absolute necessity if we're going to thrive. Resting isn't an afterthought, but a basic part of being human. Productivity should not look like exhaustion. The concept of laziness is a tool of the oppressor.”


I find the end of the year is a really good time to rest, because, let’s be real, not much is happening anyway. Much of the [privileged] world is at home with family eating copious amounts of cheese. And as makers + product based business owners, which many of you are, craft fair season is over, holiday sales are over, and it is a perfect time to go into hibernation and re-set for 2024. 


Here’s how I close down my business for 2023: 


I have 1:1 evaluations with everyone on my team. (If it is just you on your team, you should have this with yourself!) I’ll even supply you with questions I ask my team here. I find that throughout the year the meetings are meetings–often focused on tasks and projects, and not enough check-ins on how the team is doing, what they want, what is hard for them, what is working. (again, have these check-ins with yourself as well!) Be a really good boss to your team (and yourself) and discuss systems, communications, what projects went well, and where there could have been more support. 


Put up that email away message: Put that away message up! Save yourself from your inbox. Seriously, even delete the app off your phone. You really do not need to be checking email at this time. Save your brain and your soul from your inbox. I often find outside communication can muddle intuition, so really use this time to connect with YOURSELF and get in alignment with your own inner compass, without the chaos of outside opinion. 


Social Media Blackout: Same as above, this goes for social too. It is so important for me personally (and most likely you) to go offline. During this time I find myself reaching for my phone, like a ghost limb situation to scroll, and it just shows me how addicted I am. Detox from the addiction. Go on a walk, sit in silence, start a puzzle. IT IS NOT EASY IF YOU ARE AN ADDICT. But I find that this time away from social is some of the most rewarding time of the year. I become a clear channel, connect with myself, my home, my art, my family. (ok, I keep my fb marketplace app for thrifty scrolling)

REMINDER IF YOU DELETE THE APPS THE DRAFTS DELETE, so save those important drafts to your phone first.


Vision Board: I like to write down some goals for next year, think about the business structure from a birds eye perspective when I’m not in the muck of everyday tasks. A vision board is a lovely way to conceptualize what you want. You can do cut outs from magazines, or perhaps make a digital vision board. I do find it is nice to have a physical copy to hang it up somewhere. 


Cleaning House: I use my break to clean the house, to declutter my office. You can even do some digital cleaning. Clean up old photos on your phone (I know you have 2.1 million photos of your dog, and 3500 of your product over and over). 


Thank you’s : Before I sign off completely I thank my community. I send an email to my list, thank my brands I worked with this year, send my team a little gift. Showing the folx you worked with that you appreciate them can deepen the relationship and open up opportunities. 


Do you have any closing shop rituals? I would love to hear them. Comment below or send me an email. 


Happy Resting, creative, you deserve it. See you in the New Year! 


Xoxo

Phoebe

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