2020 Year in Review

2020 was the year I started singing lessons, dyed my hair pink, sold my old business, and hit new levels with this one. Not to mention the year we all lived through a pandemic, and all the physical and emotional upheaval that came with that. Here is my review.

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2020 Year in Review

I adore reading everyone’s year in review posts at the start of the year, and writing my own has always been just the excuse I need to remember, reflect, and put things into perspective (links to previous years: 2018 and 2019). This year’s is a lot later than planned because… well, life happened. The last couple of years have been personally very hard. We have lost three family members in the space of two years, most recently a few days before Christmas in 2020, which is why I've taken so long to write this post. I won't speak about personal family matters here, but it's important to let you know from the outset that things aren't always as good as they may seem on the surface.

If I could choose one word to sum up how I felt this year it'd be tired (I can sense that a lot of us are feeling it!) It wasn't all bad, though. Difficult times comes with profound lessons, and I am incredibly privileged and grateful to have grown my business this year. I'm excited about what I achieved and what I set in motion this year. Let's dive in!

Reflecting On My 2020 Intentions

In January I wrote a blog post detailing my 2020 word & intentions for the year. My word was power, which ultimately meant trusting myself, my power as a leader, the power I have to carve my own path, and taking powerful, aligned action. The year didn't exactly pan out how I expected it to (hello – pandemic!), and honestly I mostly forgot about my word for most of the year. What I didn't realise was that power would also mean facing my demons in lockdown, learning to rest in the face of long periods of unexplained fatigue (I'm still in conversation with the doctor about it), and getting through grief. As for my intentions…

  • I continued to battle with my addiction to social media (though as I write this, Instagram has been off my phone for around a month),
  • I couldn't connect in person as planned (though I did continue to connect with incredible women through various groups I'm in, which I'll talk about below),
  • I didn't manage 30 books thanks to a pandemic fatigue related reading drought (though I did read fiction almost exclusively, which I've found is wonderful for my mental health),
  • I started blogging a little more,
  • I didn't succeed in my goal of learning Tiny Dancer on piano, but I did start singing lessons,
  • And I was pretty much forced to learn how to rest properly!

I'll save my word and intentions for 2021 for another post. For now, let's dive into what happened, and what I learned, in 2020.

Winter

I kicked off 2020 with a live event (remember those?!) The One Live with Suzy Ashworth was genuinely life-changing for me, for many reason, not least the fact that I had to face my social anxiety head on to even get myself into the room. It gave me the kick up the arse to spend the most money I have ever spent on a coach – a very good decision. I can't explain how good it is to have the level of support where you have someone to turn to on the other end of Voxer whenever you wobble.

The live event also saw me stay away from home (and my 2 year old) for four whole nights, shortly after which we ended our breastfeeding journey. When I reflect on what I've achieved in this business in just two years, I constantly have to remind myself that I was breastfeeding and sleep-deprived for much of it!

January also saw me start the first round of my brand new group mentoring programme, Rise. This programme completely changed my business, and I'm so proud of the work I did with three rounds of wonderful humans throughout the year. It also forced me to stretch my comfort zone and learn to work with groups (vs. just one-to-one). I recorded a podcast episode about launching it, although it massively grew in subsequent rounds since recording that.

My son soon started mostly sleeping through the night – hallelujah! – though I still haven't caught up on missed sleep. I did, however, challenge myself to a month of fun, flow and freedom in February. It mostly consisted of a really quick journalling check-in to help me get in touch with how I felt each day. I then simply followed what felt good. I ended up playing a lot of the Sims 2 (a teenage favourite of mine) and even went to the salon and had my hair dyed pink (scroll down for photos).

Spring

We took a family holiday to Center Parcs mid-March and spent most of the time anxiously checking the news and witnessing guests leave en masse. At least we had one last meal out at Cafe Rouge before we got back home and lockdown was announced the next day. Weirdest holiday ever.

Business-wise, my anxiety definitely got in the way. I gave myself permission to step back from work while we all figured out what on earth was going on, and how we would cope with the “new normal”. Once my husband and I figured out a childcare schedule, it turns out I was able to earn more money working far fewer hours. My mental bandwidth was greatly reduced and I really learned how to truly rest. I journaled every day, I spent lots of time in the garden, I quit drinking, and played computer games to get me through. It all sounds quite lovely written down like this, but it definitely didn't feel it at the time.

I'd been testing a brand new offer based on training from Elizabeth Goddard (affiliate link) – my 1:1 Day of Voxer – which I loved, and was in the middle of selling it when lockdown started. I relaunched it a little while later and it went really, really well. I love working with clients that way! And in May, I launched my Quiet Ambition course. I kept it super simple, a 2-day launch, daily pre-written emails and recorded podcast, and it turns out to be one of the best things I've ever created. I see it as a bit of a turning point in my business, moving firmly into the mindset side of things (not just the practical).

Summer

Summer saw the easing of lockdown and a glimpse of the freedoms we had been missing. We could see our families again (outside)! We could go to the pub! We had childcare again! Interestingly, it was incredibly easy to slip back into my old (unhealthy) work habits. Boundaries became more blurred, “play” wasn't prioritised and I started adding more to my plate. Unfortunately I also started to experience long bouts of fatigue, which I'm still dealing with now. As minor as it may sound, it isn't easy running a business when you're always tired, suffering with brain fog and your whole body aches. I have a new found respect for those with chronic illness, and a renewed passion to work much less in 2021.

In terms of offers & sales I had some of my best months ever. in July, I made the huge decision to sell off some remaining digital assets from my first business. It was a really difficult and comfort-zone-stretching decision, and I recorded an entire podcast episode about it which you can listen to here. In this business, I sold out my 1:1 mentoring after setting the intention to do so and truly getting behind that goal mindset-wise. It was crystal clear to me that the more I focused on feeling good and prioritising myself, the easier it was to sell what I do – which culminated in a very successful launch of my group programme in August. 

August was my highest income month ever, and also the month where I invested five figures back into the business. I signed up for another 6 months with my 1:1 coach, and enrolled in the Tabwoo Practitioner Certification – and this year will see me certified as a life coach, NLP practitioner, T.I.M.E. Techniques practitioner, Hypnotherapist and Emotional Freedom Technique practitioner. Until now I've described what I do as mentoring – sharing from my own 13 years of business to guide you in your own. But I wholeheartedly believe in the power of these mindset techniques and am now leaning into my role as a coach. I can't pretend it was easy to invest all of that money, but it has been oh so worth it.

Autumn

I kicked off autumn with another professional photo shoot with the lovely Amy, who I worked with last year. I hired my first copywriter (for this business) to write the sales page of my Journalling Course, and I continued to be massively supported by my VA, Meghan. And, in a bid to cultivate a healthier relationship with social media, I started working with a social media manager. I still have a long way to go, but I'm no longer spending energy worrying about what to post each day, I have a good system for batching and reusing my content (thanks to Trello), and I'll be exploring my relationship further in 2021.

Offers-wise, I celebrated £10K months, I raised my prices, and I continued to follow what felt good to me when it came to deciding what to launch next. My Journalling Course became my best ever selling offer in terms of the number of people enrolled (we're now up to 90+ students!), and Quiet Ambition continued to grow. Finally, I ran the Aligned Offers Experience for the first time in December and it was incredible. I experimented with 5 days of consecutive trainings and it really paid off with rave reviews (I'll definitely open it up again in 2021). For the first time, I started to see how my collection of experimental offers was forming a bigger ecosystem that really made sense to me (I'll definitely share more about this in future). Looking back, I am so proud of the products I've launched this year!

Personally, I took a very brave step and started singing lessons 😱 I first contacted a singing teacher around 10 years ago, but when I didn't get a response I bottled out. But now I'm doing it, I'm stretching my comfort zone and it really is so much fun. And as cliché as it may sound, I'm also learning so much about using my voice and caring less about what others might think. If you've been considering something like this, I encourage you to go for it!

What's Next?

So that's my year in a nutshell. As I said in the introduction, all of this was happening alongside family illness and loss, fatigue, and mental health dips – and it wasn't easy. But I'm honestly grateful for everything 2020 has taught me. As for 2021, I'll save that for a future post. But in short, I'm massively committed to working smarter, not harder. Which means relaunching things I've already created, and setting up systems to sell things on autopilot in the background.

2020 Greatest Hits

Top 5 Podcast Episodes:

Top Blog Post: How to Start A Podcast

Top Freebies: How to Start A Podcast Checklist and Quiet Visibility eBook

Top 5 Programmes I Sold:

Top Investments I Made: Tabwoo Practitioner Certification and a year of 1:1 with Ray Dodd, Money Coach

Podcast episodes you might like:

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