Why You Need A Book Of Awesome (And How To Make One)
Have you ever had a day when you fell out of love with your business?
When it all felt too hard? Maybe a mean customer had a dig because they were in a bad mood. Perhaps things just keep going wrong. Maybe you're just tired and grumpy and need a break.
The thing is, we ALL get those bad days. No matter how long you're in business, it never goes away, it's just a different level of bad day.
It can be really hard to snap out of a bad day; to get your enthusiasm back when you really don't feel like going on but I have something that might help. I recommend all my clients do this as soon as they start trading, even if their first bad day is a long way in the future - just so it's there, in case.
I'm talking about a Book Of Awesome - it's the name I came up with for something you can easily create to help lift your mood and get you back in the business groove.
What's A Book Of Awesome?
A Book Of Awesome is a book of all the lovely things people have said about your business. All the testimonials. All the nice comments on your Facebook page. All the complimentary messages people have sent. All the lovely things people have said to your face, or said to you or about you on the phone.
It's a book dedicated to YOU and YOUR BUSINESS.
And if that sounds a bit weird and self-indulgent, I promise there's a very good business reason for doing this.
Why You Need A Book Of Awesome
If you've been through a bad day in your business you'll know how difficult it can be to snap out of it.
What starts off as a bad day can actually turn into something much worse and I don't just mean a bad week or a bad month, although that often happens and it's horrible. No, I'm talking about the knock-on effects a bad day can have on our business.
Because our energy is all wrong while we are down and fed up and sad or hurt or annoyed, our productivity goes right down. We don't feel like working. We would rather feel sorry for ourselves and have a bit of a business duvet day. Which turns into two days. Then three.
Because we're out of the business having our very own pity party, things start to slip. We get behind on making or creating, on marketing, on admin. So when we finally DO 'snap out of it', we are miles behind and have a huge catch-up job to do.
And then there's the THING - the thing that set off your bad day in the first place. That nasty comment or bad review, that grumpy customer or glimpse of a competitor's stuff that made you feel inferior. THAT doesn't go away. It sits there and festers in your head, or eats away at your brain, consuming your thoughts to the point where you are totally distracted and can't get anything done.
If you get stuck in this horrible place that started off as a bad day (and by the way, it happens so easily because you're working alone and have nobody to talk to about it) then your confidence plummets, everything seems pointless and you wonder why you bother. And THAT is a sure fire way to break a business.
This is where your Book Of Awesome comes in.
This book is more than a book. It's a treasure chest of joy and happiness. It's packed full of wonderful, positive energy.
One glance reminds you why you are doing this. You can see the difference you've made to people's lives. You can see the happiness you have brought to others. You can see what they think about you and your business - the positive things. You can see how AWESOME you are. And it's OK to celebrate this and indulge yourself in it - in fact it's not just OK, it's ESSENTIAL.
Reading your Book Of Awesome is a reminder of why you set up this business. It's a reminder of why you do this, through good days and bad. And it's a gentle but firm shove back into your business, accompanied by warm, fuzzy thoughts.
How To Make A Book Of Awesome
Well, it's as easy as you might imagine.
First of all you need a beautiful notebook. One that feels too good to use. The one you've had your eye on, that you were going to treat yourself to - or the one you've had stashed away for a special occasion. This notebook has to make you smile. It doesn't need to be expensive, but it does have to be especially gorgeous.
Secondly, you have to set aside an hour. Just an hour out of your life. And in that hour you go through your emails, your Facebook page, your messages, your texts, your reviews and you look for all the lovely & complimentary things that everyone has ever said about your business. All of them.
Then either print them off and stick them into your notebook along with the name and date of the person concerned, or just copy out the words by hand with a particularly gorgeous pen (obviously it has to be a special pen, that makes you smile).
Now take some colouring pens and doodle pretty patterns wherever you like in the notebook. Draw little frames around the lovely words. Make some art out of it. Draw balloons and flowers, draw whatever makes you happy. Get the kids involved if you want. This book has to make you smile.
Then, when you've added all the lovely words about your business you can find, you find a page near the back or inside the front cover where it's easily found and you create your BIG WHY PAGE. You remind yourself why you started this business and what the big dream is. You can write it, or stick photos of the kids in there, or print pictures off and stick them in - there is no wrong way, you just create a page that sums up for you why this business matters to YOU.
How To Use Your Book Of Awesome
When you're feeling fed up or hurt or down or defeated, dig out that book.
Have a break. Grab a cuppa. Raid the kids' chocolate stash and start reading. Read all those lovely comments about your business and think about when you received them. Think about how happy those customers were. Think about how it felt when you did that job, or made that sale. Think about the good times (hmm sounds a bit like a dodgy eighties song from my youth). You get the idea.
Your Book Of Awesome is your antidote to crap. It's your wake up call. It's your gentle shove back into business, to do what you do best for customers who need you. It's a business saver. And you need one.
No business owner should have to tackle a bad day without a Book Of Awesome. It's time to make yours happen.