Honing Expertise Takes Time, Focus & Elimination
“Edit your life frequently and ruthlessly. It’s your masterpiece after all.”~Nathan W. Morris
1. expert skill or knowledge; expertness; know-how: business expertise.
We usually hear from Abby today but I want to share some exciting news with you! Bold Blind Beauty is my baby and like my children, I’ve watched it grow and continue to evolve. Before writing my first words, I did some research, took some online WordPress courses, created the site, then let it simmer for a year.
During the year of simmering, I was working full-time, learning all I could about blogging, and community service gigs. Looking back, I’m still not sure how I was able to manage my time but I succeeded.
In May of this year, it will be five years since I was laid off and transitioned into retirement. Yet, these last five years have been busier and have tested my limits beyond what I could have imagined. When I first found out I would be out of a job I was excited because finally, I’d have enough time to do my advocacy work. If I only knew then what I know now.
Having worked the majority of my life it was weird redefining myself after my job ended. I was writing but didn’t feel like a blogger, taking pictures but wasn’t a photographer. As a matter of fact, during my year of simmering, my expertise boiled down to cutting back.
More Is Not Necessarily Better
When I launched Bold Blind Beauty at the end of 2014 I was all gung-ho and was going to write—every. single. day. Well, about six months or so in this plan was scrapped and it was back to the drawing board.
Trying to be all I could be with all the organizations I was working with was in the end futile. While I thought I had more time to devote to community service I spread myself too thin. Eventually, I had to let step down from several positions to regain my focus.
Today, thanks to periodic personal audits, I can easily see what needs to be removed from my life to keep me on track. Here are just a few steps I’ve taken to continue my journey:
- Unsubscribed to email lists & only subscribe to retailers temporarily for discounts
- Shut down Facebook and email during the day (check them in the morning, and twice during the day)
- Deleted social media apps from my phone except for Instagram
- Use the “do not disturb” cell phone feature and mute notifications on the computer
- Left all but two Facebook groups
- Use Hootsuite, a social media management tool, to schedule Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram posts
- Blocked or unfriended social media nuisances
- Frequently say no
This ongoing journey on the evolution of Bold Blind Beauty is still a learning experience for me and I love it! However, in order for me to be at my best, I’ve learned, to be selective, to be me.
The Good News
A few days ago I was accepted into an Adult Continuing Education program. My participation will allow me to compete for a chance to win a monetary award to help fund my business. The deadline is quickly approaching but even if I can’t reach my goal it’s still a win because I’m gaining knowledge.
Also, I’ve been asked to do a breakout session at a #STEM Career Expo in Pittsburgh. This event will be for blind and visually impaired students and their parents. I’m so thrilled to be able to take part in an event geared to the growth of our future generation.
Be selective in seeking opportunities to expand your horizons. You never know what will come your way! ~Steph