We All Go Off Track Sometimes. This Was My Time!

We all go off track and it was my turn to stop being cheerful!

Have you noticed I’ve been M.I.A. for a couple of weeks?  I thought about just writing a cheery new post and not telling you why.  I wondered if anyone would even notice really – maybe I could just press on?

But no.  That wouldn’t be me.  I’m an open book type of girl.  I’m the chick that shares her photos that make her look like she’s eating poo——->>>

And I firmly believe in sharing all the gory details when things go pear shaped – not just the fun stuff and the great and positive stuff.  Don’t get me wrong – I love positive.  But sometimes I wonder if it doesn’t lead to other women comparing themselves and starting to wonder why their life and business isn’t all roses every single day.

We all go off track sometimes.  I’m not sure we should hide it.

Everyone knows that no-one has a perfect life.  No matter what things appear to be – there’s always the other true side that we don’t get to see!  How many business successes have you read about who admit (once they’ve ‘made it’) that they were on the verge of giving up just months before their big break?  That they had relationship problems, money problems or nowhere to live.  That they lost belief in themselves and were just going to go back to being normal like everyone else?

Plenty, I’m sure.

So I thought I’d jut tell you straight up what’s been going on with me the past few weeks.  Well, I would tell you if I could put a finger on exactly what caused it.

The absolute truth is that I have no real idea!

I’ve thought about it a lot though and I think this long list of things contributed to it:

  • I’ve been hanging out with some truly inspiring women online.  While this has been fabulous to keep me motivated (and has made my Facebook feed a truly positive place to be) it created 2 problems.
    1. Too much damn time spent on Facebook!  Once I liked another couple of hundred facebook pages and joined some awe-inspiring new groups I had to spend over an hour each day catching up (if I’m honest I sometimes let this stretch to multiple hours!)
    2. The second problem is something I’ve not experienced before.  I started to see ladies announcing they had sold out of their programs that were $8000 for one day!  Women who had 500 likes on their Facebook page in just a few weeks without even creating a website yet!  Websites with beautiful photos (although – ahem – many of them look the same!)  Advice to add more words to lead pages.  Advice to cut out all the text.  Advice to use this photo for Facebook advertising or put your freebie up and people will just sign up – you just have to use the right template.

Although I would not have said it at the time, in hindsight I think I may have been unconsciously comparing myself to those women.  This is something I have never ever done before.  Ever.

  • Though one of the written goals I have for my own business is NOT to go super professional so that I remain easily relatable to other women, I found myself wondering if I wasn’t too much of a slob!  Hahaha!
  • While another written goal is to be my usual fun-loving self and be 100% me online, I found myself thinking ‘maybe I should try to be more professional’.  Let me tell you – professional doesn’t really work for me when I’m an employee – it certainly isn’t me online!
  • I’ve written and published 5 books this year and really struggled to get reviews though everyone who reads them tells me they are great and they can’t wait to get the next one.  With not too many people willing to put their words down in print on Amazon I started to wonder if people were just being nice and maybe my books really suck?  Maybe my chatty style isn’t engaging at all?  Maybe people do want to read boring books, written with no fun-injection, that are full of exercises and in-depth steps that waste more of their time so they never get to what they should be doing?  Maybe women just want to read cowboy romances that put no pressure on them to do anything but buy the next one?  Ewwww…..
  • I’ve made a commitment to myself to publish a new book on Amazon every month.  Completing the next one has been difficult for me as I ponder the previous 5 efforts.  Usually I churn these out so I’ve struggled to work out why this time it is different.
  • I marvelled that people were excited to join my No More Vanilla Living Action Academy! and then didn’t sign up for the accountability portal which is what makes the whole program work!  Not being able to help these ladies has been difficult for me to swallow!
  • I have a line of products that I want to sell and the stock has been looking at me from the shelf for a few months now while I concentrate on other things.  Christmas is coming and these are rather perfect gifts – not doing this has played on my mind for ages!
  • I’m running multiple blogs and though I’m usually a machine and can cut through a tonne of work quickly, I have had days where I just couldn’t be bothered!  Not just one or two days – I’ve lost whole weeks and wondered where the time went!
  • My 30 day online business video challenge stalled when my videos wouldn’t upload to YouTube from our home internet connection.  I’m still grumpy about this and have to remind myself that I chose this travelling lifestyle!  I don’t like to let people down and I feel like that’s what happened with this challenge.
  • I finished my course on getting a traditional publishing contract.  It was awesome but I haven’t made any progress on my book.  I sent out 20 emails to people who said they would participate in the project and only received one reply.  Annoying but it’s a really personal subject so was probably to be expected!
  • My favourite writing restaurant has had a change of staff and it isn’t quite the same now.  I’m having to spend some extra time re-training the staff to do my bidding!  I used to look forward to going down there – now it isn’t as fun!  And they’ve started talking to me.  My once-peaceful writing space has now become a social outing which I didn’t agree to attend!
  • My daughter announced she was pregnant.  Instant desire to move home to Australia has been stalking me ever since.  I’m missing both my girls a lot more than I ever imagined I would.  I’m missing my 21 year old son too, even though we don’t hang out much.  This is typical of the new me I wrote about in this book
    – the me who has feelings!  Ewwww…..
  • Then Google slapped my travel website for selling non-existent links and I spent multiple days learning about nofollow links and making massive changes to the site.  It’s still not sorted and it has cost me a tonne of time.
  • I finally got tired of learning new stuff online!  I have so much knowledge in my head about websites, mailing lists, social media, pretty graphics, WordPress, backups, new programs, Google, Keywords, marketing, sales etc.  But it still seems like every week I need to research something new and learn how to implement it.  I can feel myself starting to burn out with all this knowledge!

Phew – that’s a long list huh?

I’m resisting the urge to delete it even though it sounds a bit whiny to me!

I have the above stuff go on all the time and I barely notice them.  I usually swat these problems away like flies and just make a new plan to go forward.

So what was the difference this time?

Possibly it was that all this happened at once.  The other possibility is that I’m getting really old and this meltdown was helped along by some hormones!  Oh my gawd!  I’m at the age where I’m considering my hormones!  Yuk!

Welcome To Bad Tracey!This was my scary face for the last couple of weeks!

Hormone-wise this was a particularly difficult month.  I had a miserable week and some really black moods.  This happens to me about once a year and this was my time!  I literally woke up one morning when it was over and said to Gert – ‘Oh, I can feel that I’m alright now!’

I think if you read the whole list through that I wrote above it says ‘Oh my god!  Somewhere along the line I forgot that no-one is an overnight success!’

I forgot to keep being me.

I forgot to stop trying to be someone else who does things in a different way.

I forgot how awesome I am and why people love me (or hate me!)

I forgot that often you do stuff over and over for ages and then the success comes in one giant wave.

This website has existed for just a couple of months but I was freaking out about it being a failure!  I wrote 5 books in 5 months but worried they weren’t good enough!  I’ve had loads of comments on this site for such a new site.  I have 1000 Twitter followers in that short time (thanks to using my own Twitter guide!) and over 400 on Facebook.

I know how to get shit done!

I know how to get people engaged on Facebook.

I know how to motivate people to take action.

I know how to write blog posts practically in my sleep.

I know how to create online products and courses.

I know how to help someone prepare for their own gap year.

I know how to help other people write a book in a very short period of time.

I know how to do the tech stuff of getting books on Amazon.

I know how to set up a blog and how to help others get blogging.

I know how to work out which nomadic income stream suits people.

I know how to teach myself anything I need to learn to work online.

I know how to spend an hour with someone on Skype and open their eyes to new possibilities.

I know exactly how to be me – even though I forgot it for a few weeks.

Now I find myself wide awake again and wondering where the last 3 weeks went!

I’ve barely written a blog post.  Barely updated my multiple Facebook pages.  Haven’t updated my programs or recorded any new videos.  I haven’t made any new products or any new freebies to give away.  I had two coaching sessions where I felt really sorry for myself, had a bit of a cry, got great feedback, had great ideas and then sat on them for a week after!

I ate a load of cake and fried food and I watched the entire seasons 1-4 of ‘The Walking Dead’ in the middle of the night (In fairness that’s been on my to do list for years!)

While I was doing all this lazing around I did do some serious soul-searching too.  Here’s what I worked out during my period of mental decline!

  • I don’t give a toss what other people think of me.  I don’t care what they think of my books, courses or products.  While I want all of these to be successful, I need to remember to be me and to continue to put 100% of myself into everything I do.  Other people’s feedback has never been an issue for me and I forgot that for a few weeks!
  • I really, really like writing.  I love writing books, blog posts, articles, Facebook updates, guest posts and course material.  You name it, I love to write it.  I’ll be incorporating this a lot more in my business going forward.
  • I really, really want to continue to lose weight.  My desire to put my whole face in a cheesecake only happens for a few days a month.  If I can withstand those few days I’ll be right!
  • I really, really adore coaching women.  But I don’t enjoy the randomness of it.  I’ll be clarifying my coaching over the next couple of weeks to make sure there are real touchable outcomes from the sessions and the exact right people are benefiting from those sessions.
  • I love, love, love my No More Vanilla Living Action Academy!  I’ve decided to keep the price low and change the site to more of a productivity hub.  I love the how-to aspect of getting stuff one and I love the motivation of a team!
  • I really, really want to meet more people who are planning on long term travel.  I know what a life changing experience this can be and I want to help more people get themselves out there experiencing what I do!
  • I really, really need to consider outsourcing some of the tech stuff.  I’m at my capacity for learning new stuff and need to let go of some control over the details.
  • It really, really won’t matter if we decide to move back to Australia to be near the kids.  We’ve had almost two years of constant travel.  Moving back doesn’t make me a failure – although it might mean I have to go back to a traditional job as my online income doesn’t support the expense of even the basics in a Western lifestyle.  Or I could just pull my finger out and speed up the plan I have for the next 12 months.
  • I need to concentrate more on what I’m doing and less on what others are doing.  While I can be helpful to others who need a hand, I need to stop signing up for all their stuff to make them feel good.  Being signed up for multiple programs, free courses, facebook pages, webinars, challenges etc takes away from the time I have to do what I need to do.  It contributes to overwhelm and while people love me for it, they don’t necessarily sign up for my programs to reciprocate.  I had gotten over most of my saying-yes-to-be-nice phase but I think this is similar and I’m not going to do it anymore.  This goes for downloading, reading and leaving reviews for free books that my friends and acquaintances have published.  I spend a tonne of time doing this and find others don’t take the time to do the same.  I understand that many others are working full time and are busier than I am but I ain’t gonna do it anymore unless I’m interested in the book itself.
  • I already culled a tonne of stuff from my Facebook while I was sitting around.  The really good things stayed but I removed loads of things I wasn’t interested in and left groups that took up too much time to stay in the loop.
  • I need to focus more on my goals.  Stick them back on the bathroom mirror and add them to my screen saver where they used to be.  I love goals and I’m good at reaching them – but I do have a tendency to forget about them when I get busy!

It’s such a relief to write all of this down and know that it all makes perfect sense.  For someone who is often accused of being eternally cheerful, it’s very hard to have a few off weeks where you want to rip people’s heads off!  There’s almost a need to keep up the cheeriness and that’s just stupid.

This is how we look AFTER we return from going off track!I’m looking forward to a good few months of being this chick again —>>

My big girl pants are back on and y’all better watch out for what’s coming next!

Follow me on social media to make sure I keep it together!  I like to update my Facebook A LOT!!

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Comments

We All Go Off Track Sometimes. This Was My Time! — 19 Comments

  1. Awesome post Tracey :)I think sometimes us girls just get a bit tired too – not necessarily physically – but mentally, emotionally and creatively as well. The world is so fast and connected these days, its almost unnatural to take your time, take time out, reflect – or just wag for a few days. This was exactly what I needed to hear today, so thankyou 🙂 And I’m certainly going to check out your books and programs.

    Thanks for the inspiration,

    Eliza.

    PS – HATE having to train new coffee shop staff – and when they start speaking to you… not on, guys, not on. 😛
    Eliza Ellis recently posted…SIMPLE & PRETTY GIRL’S TOTEMy Profile

    • Oooh WAGGING Eliza – that’s EXACTLY what I’ve been doing for a couple of weeks! If I have to learn one more thing my tired head is going to explode! You can grab one of the books for free from my website so make sure you don’t pay for that one on Amazon! And I’d love you forever if you left me a review – although I won’t throw myself off a cliff now if it gets away from you either! 🙂 I think we all have to remember to just breathe! The coffee shop man has added me on Facebook – I suspect productivity is a thing of the past in his presence forever more! Thanks a bunch for dropping by – that made me smile today!

  2. Wow! Welcome back! You seriously rock, I need some of your get stuff done advice and assistance. Funnily enough I finally posted the review of your book on Amazon this evening, bought a book and remembered.
    Love your stuff Tracey, the world needs more super real people like you.

    • Awwww thanks Kylie! Great minds think alike – you must have been leaving it while I was writing this! Than goodness I’m feeling like myself again and my self-worth is not tied to how many reviews I’ve got! Thanks a bunch for leaving yours – I trust you not to yank my chain and be honest!

  3. Big kiss! Lots of thoughts about this post, none that I’ll share now. Maybe one day over a virtual coffee. Lol. And I have missed you.

  4. To my darling clever daughter. You are amazing and both your dad and I agree that we cannot figure out how we made you so special. Keep on the way you are,you know you will achieve your goals..I am so proud of you..and might even have to saunter back to Oz, to see that great granchild. Love you loads xxxxx Muter

    • Obviously it was something in the wine that made me turn out so ACE! Thank you muter for the kind comments. I just have to remember to stick to my own list of goals and stop trying to achieve everyone else’s!

  5. As I sat down today to do some blog reading and comment posting,I was wondering about you – having not seen anything come through in the past few weeks after we had first started getting to know each other. And then this post.

    I can so feel you!
    There is a quote I just love that says ” We feel insecure because we compare our behind the scenes to other people’s in front of the curtain”. Your rant made me think of this quote.

    You are just FINE! Being real and airing the dirty laundry of doubts and life as it truly is, is so much of your appeal. (And BTW, no one is selling those huge programs off the bat as it appears – start Googling around and visit the history of some of those women!)

    Glad to see you did some soul searching and even gladder to see you back! One of the biggest keys to success that I know is being able to ride the waves like a boat on the ocean. Staying upright when in the peaks and the valleys. Taking in stride that both smooth sailing and stormy seas are all valid part of the journey!

    Warmly,
    ~Deborah
    Deborah Tutnauer recently posted…4 Reasons Why your WHY Won’t Make you Successful in your Entrepreneur BusinessMy Profile

    • Thanks Deborah – how funny that the whole time I was finding myself completely unable to update anything I was worrying about a couple of new online friends I’d just made! Where would they think I had got to – would they even notice? I’m pleased to see I wasn’t far off track as all have commented here since! I do love to give both sides of the story – especially with long term travel. It’s so easy to write the fun updates on social media – share cool pics and make everyone jealous of our beach location. But I think it is irresponsible to just present the good stuff – people considering this lifestyle or their own online business need to know how hard it can sometimes be. I usually bounce back from any down times very quickly but this took weeks to get over. I was starting to worry about me! Now that I’m out the other side it’s hard to even see why I was so down. I’m really glad I waited until I was back to normal before getting to the rant part online. Otherwise it might have been ALL IN CAPITALS!! Thanks for stopping by – I plan to ride the waves for a good few years yet!

    • Thanks for the reminder Deborah – I’ve been meaning to add some text to my book sign up saying that everyone will get updates there too. Will put that on my list for tonight’s word session. In the meantime if you click on the link to get my book and sign up that way, it will add you to my list and you’ll get the updates – you can just ignore the book download part if you don’t want the freebie. I tend to send the blog update about a week after the post is published. I added yours to my feedly so I can see each of your updates – I’m having an email cleanout and trying not to subscribe to anything new!

  6. AAARRRGGGHHHHH! You have NO IDEA how much you’ve just described the last couple of months for me!

    I know this online stuff inside out, but it’s comparison of myself to others that kills my ideas from moving forward. It’s exhaustion and the stupid black dog that stops me in my tracks and halts my plans, my progress and my success, and it’s just plain old burn-out too!

    It’s also isolation I think because this online stuff is a lonely space, and I don’t need to learn how to install plugins, or write email newsletters, I just need to implement the bucketloads and years of knowledge in my bloody head and believe in myself enough to move forward. That is really hard when nobody in the “outside world” really understands what you do, or the possibilities that exist in the “online world”.

    Ah well, there’s my rant for the day! I have an ebook to finish that’s half done, a trillion more ideas, a blog I started and haven’t updated, our travel blog that is screaming for the content that should have been on it months ago, the novel I started, and I just stopped it all.

    I’ve just bounced back and am plodding away again, but know you’re not the only one and WE CAN DO THIS SHIT!!!! xx

    • Hey Loreena – how did you find me here! lol. Reading your words is like hearing all the thoughts that were going through my head at the time. We really do know everything we need to do after all these years online. We don’t need a scrap more information – we just need to implement and forget what everyone else is doing. Honestly once I’ve stopped doing that a few things have popped out. One that really stands in my memory is that I relistened to some audios of successful people I had started comparing myself to and was wildly amused to hear the “just do whatever you want – don’t compare yourself” message right through them! How did I start following them because they were just like me and then start comparing myself to their pretty website and freak out that I wasn’t professional enough? The mind boggles! I didn’t really touch on it in my post but I think our friend the black dog might have been lurking over those few weeks. I can only ever see it in hindsight – never during the time. But it was distinctly similar to that period just after having a baby so I’m sure it’s related. Anyway – stop reading this reply and get to those tasks you’ve been putting off…..work out how long it will take to finish the ebook and put the time aside and do it. Write a couple of posts and schedule them a week apart to give your blog some content, then attack that novel. You’ve right – we’ve so got this shit!! The motivation on the bounce back is a magical time too, I might add – I’m getting so much done!

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