6 Tools to Get You Writing

Resistance the AmygdalaAny time we try to create, we face Resistance. The memory of past failures, ridicule, pain, stored in our unconscious, rise up to protect us from being hurt again. If you’ve ever tried to will yourself to stop being hungry or tired, you know your conscious mind doesn’t hold a candle to the power of the unconscious.

Rather than a frontal assault, Resistance requires circumvention. Make the bully irrelevant.

Here are six tools my clients and friends have found effective in combating writer’s block, fear, Resistance, the lizard brain; whatever you like to call it.
… more … “6 Tools to Get You Writing”

If Your Goal is to Sell Books . . .

. . . change it.

As a nonfiction author, your goal is to build your business using your book as an elegant, even extravagant, $5 business card to give to prospects.

Selling books is an outcome, if it happens at all.

… more … “If Your Goal is to Sell Books . . .”

Plan to Take a Week Off

take time offIt’s the last day of the year and you’ve been thinking about your goals for the new year. Here’s the last of my suggested goals for your virtual assistant business in the coming year.

Plan to take a week off at the end of the year to plan your business goals for the new year.

We do this every year and have for many years. We actually take two weeks. We shut down the business. We let all our clients know about 60 days in advance so there are no surprises. They get us any work we need to get done well in advance. They know that after the first of the new year, we’ll be back and raring to go!

In fact I’m off right now. I wrote this and other blog posts and scheduled them to go out during my time off so you could have some information on setting goals for your business this coming year. Now’s a great time to slow down from client work and take time to work in your own business. Most of your clients are probably taking time off now as well.

If you aren’t yet doing this, plan next year to take at least a week off at the end of the year to plan for your business goals for the following year.

Speaking of a new year, what would you like me to write about next in the new year?

Add a New Client Each Month This Year

Add 12 New clients to your virtual assistant business this yearMy first suggested goal for your virtual assistant business this coming year is for you to add a new client each month. That’s 12 new clients in 2014!

  • Is that realistic?
  • How can you go about finding new clients?
  • Can you handle the additional workload?

The answers to those questions depend on your specific business as it stands now.  Perhaps you are just starting your virtual assistant business and only have one or two clients. In that case adding 12 new clients this year may be just the thing you need. On the other hand you may already have your plate full or nearly full of clients. In that case you may have a goal of just adding one more client to your roster this year.

Even if you have a full plate, I strongly suggest you add one more to your roster. Why? We all know that clients can come and go quickly. If you have a bit more than you can handle right now, we’ll talk in another post at a later date about how you can collaborate with another virtual assistant and still be able to take on a new client. Then if you do lose a client during the year, you’ve got one that can fill that spot.

It is possible to find new clients. That’s the question most newer virtual assistants ask me when they come to me for coaching services: “How do I find new clients?” I’ve written lots about this before. My number one suggestion: ask your existing clients for referrals. Almost every client I’ve ever had knew a friend, business colleague, or someone else who needed some assistance. Ask your clients to refer your services to anyone they know and as an added-value, provide them with a free report to pass along when they refer your services. As an example, I have a free report I created for business owners who wonder how a virtual assistant can help them. It’s called 11 Ways a Virtual Assistant Will Help You Get More Done. Please download it for free and feel free to use it and pass it along.

So, if you get a new client every month, can you handle the additional workload? Putting systems and procedures in place to streamline your work will be very helpful. Additionally, collaborating with other virtual assistants can be just the key to having a large roster of clients. As I mentioned previously, I’ll be writing about that in another post at a later date.

Do you have other questions about adding a new client each month this year? I want to hear from you. Please use the comments section below to send me your thoughts, suggestions, and questions.

Watch for other tips in upcoming posts for your 2014 goals!

10 Goals for Your Virtual Assistant Business in 2014

10 goals for 2014

It’s that time of year again. We’re winding down this year and about to begin 2014. What are your goals for your virtual assistant business in 2014?

My husband and I take two weeks off at the end of every year and shut down our businesses so we can focus on our businesses instead of working in them. We evaluate what worked and what didn’t work. Then we make a plan for the new year. I suggest you take some time in the next few weeks to sit down and write down ten goals for your virtual assistant business in 2014.

To get your creative juices flow with ideas for goals, here are 10 goals you might choose to have for your virtual assistant business in 2014:

  1. Add one new client each month of the year.
  2. Raise your rates by 10%.
  3. Offer an added-value feature for your existing clients.
  4. Commit to posting at your blog regularly.
  5. Start using Pinterest. If you already are using Pinterest, create a new board with tips for your clients.
  6. Add 5 new connections to each of your social media networks every week.
  7. Learn a new skill that you can offer to your clients.
  8. Join an online virtual assistant forum and interact weekly.
  9. Create a procedures manual for your repetitive tasks and ask another VA to review them. This will come in handy if you need to take some time off and hand your tasks off to someone else for a bit.
  10. Plan to take a week off at the end of 2014 to plan your business goals for 2015.

I’d love to hear what your goals will be in 2014. Please share them in the comments so other virtual assistants can get some ideas as well.

Don’t forget to share this post on Google+, pin it to Pinterest, or write a similar blog post.

Let’s make 2014 the best year yet!