This week, my third physical proof of Path Of The Freelancer will arrive. My goal is to identify and fix any remaining issues with the book and make it available for presale on Amazon. While I've started marketing the newly launched website, I'll kick up my external marketing and promotion efforts by focusing on driving people to pre-order the book when it's ready.
Read About Path Of The Freelancer's Website Launch
What began in 2014 and continued in 2015, has now become an annual tradition. This reflection point yearly blog post is my last write-up for 2016.
2016 has been a jam packed and accomplished year for my family and me. In February, we had Elihu Axel Montoya, our fourth child. In the spring, we began the process of buying a house, and I also published IDEMA. This fall, I've launched The Island Story and just recently finished writing Path Of The Freelancer, my first book. All of this was on top of excelling in my best financial year ever, as a freelancer.
It is by God's grace, the support of my love wife and family, and the encouragement of my community that has empowered me to succeed. Looking out on the horizon, there are also new and exciting changes coming ahead. Looking back, I am excited about the progress we've made and looking out on the horizon; there are new and exciting changes ahead. Let's dive in.
About My Year 2016
The Island Story played an important role in the Noodlehead Marketing journey, as well as my own personal growth. Unfortunately, the story went into hibernation when Noodlehead shut down. With some help, I've now completed a written version of the story. If you've heard it, it's changed, and it now contains a new ending. If you're curious, you can read it at the link below.
Earlier this year, we launched IDEMA, a framework for capturing and sustaining ideas. At the conclusion of Noodlehead Marketing, we determined IDEMA as one of the two valuable ideas worth preserving and sharing with others.
The second valuable takeaway was The Island Story. It was a story that helped us personally grow as well as help us to elevate our level of excellence and significance with clients. It led us down an unexpected and powerful journey to help others discover intentionality. While we shut down the company in 2014, two important but unfinished tasks were to publish IDEMA and The Island Story for all. Due to the personal breakdown, I experienced during the conclusion of the company, we had to move on with our lives and vocation without sharing these ideas. They went dormant.
After arriving at a consistent level of success with freelancing, I initiated the process to package and share these ideas so others could use, share and teach them. My goal was to launch IDEMA march of this year, which we did, and to publish the Island Story October of this year. Well, it's October and with the help of some friends and family, we've completed the short version of the story. We're currently wrapping up the worksheet and story framework where others can leverage the framework of the story for their own novels, books, movies, tv, and short stories. Slightly delayed, expect the project to be completed and published by mid-November. Click here to like The Island Story on Facebook and stay up to date.
Over the past year, I've been working on my first book, Path Of The Freelancer. My goal for this month was also to complete the book manuscript. While the book is mostly complete, I've identified several weak points that need shoring up. As part of the process to finish it, I'll be working on the online course, audiobook and website.
My goal is to have the book, website, course and marketing materials finished by year's end. I'm also in the process of determining whether I'll pursue traditional publishing or self-publishing channels. I'm leaning towards self-publishing this book. What you see above is the current iteration of the book's cover (Feel free to provide any insight on how to make it better). If you'd like to receive resources on freelancing and stay up to date with the project, please like the book on Facebook.
By Mid-October of 2016, I will log the same amount of hours I logged for all of 2015. Simply put, I'm on track for a 20% growth in the number of billable hours this year. With our goal of buying a house in the near future, this has been a welcome increase.
This also means I'm currently cruising at slightly above my maximum capacity. At the end of last month, I hit a wall and was burnt out. In fact, I had to delay working with one new client and say no to another prospect who wanted to work with me.
Since there is more work to be done than I have time to do, I had to setup a simple way for me to finish my week while also leaving behind any feeling of being overwhelmed when I entered the weekend. I also wanted to make sure my clients were taken care of and, while much of the work I'm involved in does not have hard deadlines, I wanted to move tasks forward.
Feeling Overwhelmed? Click To Read More...
Read My Commentary On Why The Universe Is The Way It Is
Years ago, I found myself at a book club in Colorado Springs listening to a lady complain about her church. She was really passionate about Liturgy and her church had not implimented this into their services. I could tell it was really important to her as she proceeded to share about her poetic writings.
I saw the connection. She found the need and could fill it but was instead complaining about it. So, I told her this, and she pondered it. And then, she agreed. She was the best person to resolve the situation and was now inspired to take action.
When I look around the companies I work with, I hear people complain about the problems around them, but they stop there. I see people across Facebook complaining and criticizing leaders and others, but yet there is no drive for them participate in the solution. It's as if we're waiting for permission or direction to make our world better.
Here is the secret.
We have as much authority as we're willing to assert on a local level. We don't need permission or direction to make our world better.
We can just do it.
If we want to transform our household, we can. If we want to build up our community, we can. If we want to change something, we can do it.
When we all start to realize this, we'll stop looking up to leaders to do stuff for us, and instead we'll look to each other to make our share of this world better.
So what are you waiting for?
You know the problem, go implement a solution.
I was listening to this podcast by Michael Hyatt about conquering the email inbox. I remember when this was the most difficult mountain to conquer as I was constantly crticized and lost leads because of how poorly I managed it.
Years later, I now actively sustain an empty email inbox and am highly responsive. It's not always easy, but it's well worth it. I've found having a place for read later content, using Inbox by Gmail to schedule messages for a future date, template reponses for common responses, and Assistant.to to schedule meetings are tools that have all helped me maintain Inbox Zero.
While listening to the podcast, Michael mentioned the use of keyboard shortcuts within different tools including Gmail. My next task to increase my efficiency is to learn and memorize the shortcuts for gmail.
Now, onto discipling myself to get these keyphrases down.
We have a responsibility to move forward in our lives. In several seasons of life, I've found myself waiting for someone else to take the burden of responsibility from me and do what needed to be done. Part of 2010 was such a season, and after years in the business, I found myself waiting for the company to be successful. I was waiting for the right person to come along and fulfill my vision for the company.
Here is my journal entry below from early 2011 about a S.H.I.F.T. Moment that changed this line of thinking for me.