Year-end is the perfect time to take a look back at all we’ve completed throughout the past year. Take a look at your year in quarters (this is my analytical bookkeeping brain talking) and see where you were and what you accomplished as you moved through the year. Doing this helps to set new and possibly bigger goals for the upcoming year. It’s something I encourage you all to do because setting goals can lead to success.
This post started off as a review of my own furniture projects that were completed in 2018, but there were several things that happened in 2018 that set them off-track, I think it’s important to start there. So I’ve broken this down into two separate posts.
Entri Ways’ 2018 Year In Review: Part 1
2018 was a challenging year. The year started off slow with my creativity feeling a little stagnant, possibly due to getting sick at the new year and just not fully recovering for several weeks though the winter. It reminds me that I have to be diligent about taking my Vitamin B & D. The D especially from January to March!
Painting projects are always few and far between in the first quarter of every year due to the New England weather. I often use these months to evaluate, set goals, and write.
In January 2018, I started thinking about what I could add to my Entri Ways business model or how I could adjust. After all, would I still be able to lift and refinish huge pieces of furniture in 10 years? It physically takes a tole on your body at any age.
I started thinking about the future – five and ten years out. What did I absolutely love about my business and what could I see myself doing at any age?
The answer was pretty clear. The universe (aka God) clearly has a path for me. I just need to push the brush out of the way to take that walk down the path. In this case, little did I know that pushing the brush out of the way was meant both figuratively and literally.
I was nervous about making any changes to Entri Ways because I didn’t want to disappoint all of you – my readers. You who give me inspiration to keep refinishing, painting, writing and creating when you like a post, send comments, or ask questions. YOU let me know I’m doing something worthwhile and helpful. Thank you for that.
Still, I knew the Universe wanted me to put aside the paint brush more often and use my creativity a little differently. He wanted me to use my 28 years of marketing, writing, and promotions experience and do more with it.
But I stalled and continued to refinish and paint furniture.
Apparently by mid-April the Universe had gotten pretty impatient with me. Traveling with my son on a very rainy Patriots Day to visit a college, a car coming up behind us hydroplaned, hit our SUV, and sent us spinning out of control on the highway and hitting the Jersey barrier and guardrail. I never even knew what happened until we got out of the car and saw a second car sitting up against ours.
Our SUV was totaled but thank God we all walked away from the accident. My hockey player, who is used to get banged around, recovered much faster than myself. I wasn’t able to use my right arm or hand much over the next 2-3 months. Nothing was broken but I had gotten pretty banged up.
Well, Universe… you got your point across!
During this time of not being able to lift or refinish furniture, I renewed my Real Estate license, something I had gotten the year after I finished college.
You see, my brother had recently taken over the commerical real estate business my father started over 40 years ago. My Dad, Mom, and brother worked the business together for the past 25+ years. I helped out in the business here and there since I was 15 years old and when it’s a family-run business, it’s just naturally a part of your life.
Since the furniture was officially on hold while I recovered, I started working with my brother – shadowing him on property tours, taking and editing building photos, creating the marketing material, building his social media sites. My brother, Mom and Dad (who is moving into retirement but still shows up in the office everyday) have been incredible mentors.
And a shout-out to #JenniferAllwood and #RachelMiller who have been huge inspirations as I work on the social media for both Entri Ways and the commercial real estate.
Off track a bit. Let’s continue…
After 9 months of working on marketing and promotions for the commercial real estate, I discovered a few things:
First, I discovered how much I’ve learned over the past 12 years being a blogger – first with my fundraising site, PTO Ideas, and then with Entri Ways.
Having to build my own websites, create my own graphics, take and edit my own photos, and write, publish, and promote my own content has been an invaluable learning experience!
Second, I realized I have talents that business owners value. I’m able to use the full gamut of my blogging experience to help others grow their businesses.
My promotions are even being recognized by other business owners. In the past few months, my brother has received 3 calls from colleagues (aka the competition) asking who does his marketing). That alone is a huge compliment and I’m so incredibly grateful and humbled.
Third, this time has given me a chance to evaluate Entri Ways’ online stats. What the numbers are telling me is that you, my readers that I value so much, seem to prefer the tutorial posts.
Apparently we’re very much alike. You are learners! You want information that will teach you new things. Well, I’m listening and plan to deliver much more of that in 2019!
Finally, I’ve realized that I have become the teacher.
So, in 2019, my goal with Entri Ways is to “show you the Ways!”.
Ways to refinish, sand, paint, repair, design, and flip furniture.
Ways to stay in the business game by doing some volunteer fundraising and event-planning work. This was a huge stepping stone for where I am today, so I want to show you how it can help you too – no matter your business field.
Those two areas alone are going to be a ton of useful content being produced in 2019. There’s more I want to do, but I’m pacing myself, so that will have to wait until 2020. Building a business is a marathon, not a sprint.
This post got a little longer than I anticipated, so please continue on to Part 2 where I get directly to reviewing the furniture projects from 2018.