#279 8 Ways to De-stress This Holiday Season

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Can you believe it? 2020 is almost over, but we still need to get through the holiday season. This means we’re talking about one very important thing this week…

How to de-stress during the busiest time of the year.

Whether you’ve had a successful year in business or not, I think that at the end of the day, a lot of us are ready to move on from this year. And we could all use a little de-stressing and relaxation.

This episode is for me, too. I’ve got a lot of work ahead of me before we make it to the new year, and I know I’m not the only one.

So let’s take a break from constantly running through your mental to-do list and talk about 8 simple ways you can reduce your stress and stay healthy, inside and out, this holiday season.

#279 8 Ways to De-stress This Holiday Season Show notes

“Analyze the text messages that actually get you to buy or kick some curiosity. Take time to review a few options from other successful brands and make a list of the texts that really grabbed your attention. So keep going out there, like do your research.”

Welcome to Thrive by Design, the podcast for ambitious independent jewelry brands, looking to profit from their products, get ready to make more and sell more doing what you love, without spending every single waking minute doing it. Hey, and if you're a creative fashion or product-based business, I want to welcome you to the show. I'll be dropping big tips on launching, growing, and scaling your business. Spend more of your precious time using your creativity to make you ready. All right, let's do this.

Tracy: Welcome to Thrive by Design podcast episode 279. Hey there, Tracy Matthews here, Chief Visionary Officer of Flourish and Thrive Academy. Oh my gosh, hanging on for dear life, I'm sure all of us are thinking that same thing. 2020 is almost over, we got three weeks down. And I'm sure that most of us even though this has been a great year, for a lot of reasons, you know, it's forced us to kind of slow down a little bit. Perhaps it's forced us to draw deeper connections with our family and friends virtually and maybe get a little bit better at reaching out and stuff like that. But at the end of the day, I think a lot of us would really like to kind of go back to some semblance of normal. And that's why today's episode I think is really important.

I think we could all use a little distressing and a little more relaxing in our lives. For me, I've got a lot of work ahead, because we got some good things coming up in the pipeline. In fact, we are bringing in a brand new boot camp for January, I am so excited about it. We are doing a new boot camp, all about online marketing. And it's called the Online Marketing That Matters for Jewelry Designers boot camp. If you are a creative product maker or any sort of other product maker as well, you are more than welcome to come because everything we teach is completely relevant to you. And I'm really excited about it. Because we're doing this short and sweet. 

I know we used to do these boot camps and challenges that were about, you know, 10 days to two weeks long. And we realized, you know, people are busy. So we're doing this challenge, we're gonna make it three days, or actually, it's four days tighten right with like, a couple days after to help you kind of integrate what you've learned. And to keep you focused on what's going to really matter with your digital and online marketing strategy in 2021, because let's face it, what we do know is that is no longer a myth that people are not going to buy jewelry online, they are buying in droves, and they're buying jewelry of all types, including expensive fine jewelry. 

So we got you and if you have another physical product, I'm sure you know, that your products are selling or you've heard about people with e-commerce brands, where products are selling. And I say this because more and more in our Momentum Program, the designers in our community have been saying over and over again, how great their businesses are doing at this time compared to last year by selling online. In fact, many of the students mentioned I'm just going to call out to highlight here, sorry, Twyla. I hope this is okay that I'm mentioning this but I had a really strong in-person sales business she sold. She had a stall at Pike's market, Pikes Place Market in Seattle. As we know, Seattle is one of the places that has been really hit not only by the pandemic but in protests in some writing and all that stuff. And so, it's been intense in that city. And I know that when you lose a significant portion of your revenue, like your in-person shows, and especially when you have a regular stall at something like Pikes place, it's intense because that means that you know what happens like a lot of the money that you were making is gone. 

You know, we've been working with Twyla for a while. She had already done a lot of work to transition customers online, and I know it was a road to kind of get to this place. But she reported that her sales in November, she didn't she hadn't locked in but she was inspired by some of the other wins in our community. Her sales for November were 34% over last year over 2019 and she had a great year last year. So I'm really proud of her and I'm just so proud of so many of the members of our momentum community. 

In fact, Joyia crushed it with her in person event over Black Friday weekend. She had a three-hour event for her customers who actually might be getting this wrong. It might be a digital event wasn't specified, but she had it was way better than she expected and she blew her girl out of the water and also, Mikel Leffler who I always call Mikel because she spells her name M-I-K-E-L Leffler just started her website, maybe around this time last year when she joined us in our Momentum Program. And she had one of the best years ever. 

She's up 134% in sales, which is awesome. And those sales were coming from online. So I'm just really proud of the designers who are taking action, who didn't let COVID and a pandemic and an election prevent them from just going for it. You know, a lot of people could have taken this opportunity to step back and maybe, you know, not really lean into selling, and the designers who are really committed to their businesses and really committed to their brands, said, you know what I'm gonna do what I can. And those designers are doing fantastic. And many of them are in our Momentum Program.

And I'm super excited. And so I wanted to invite you, you know, if you've been thinking about getting support, in 2021, we would love to invite you to get some support from us. And we do these things over here called business accelerator audits. And they are perfect for designers who are really interested in making a big splash online, with their business, you know, it's awesome, if you're selling at multiple revenue streams, like if you have a wholesale business, and you're also selling at, or hopefully selling this year at in person shows, and maybe you have a retail store. 

But the one thing you know, that we've noticed, because we were working with some retailers now to is that a lot of them really relied on foot traffic, and they and when that went away, and when foot traffic was not really a thing for most of the year, because even though things opened up, you know, the parameters were different, you know, that social distancing, and having to wear masks and like having to do appointment only, it really limits the amount of people that you can see. And so people made this hard pivot to really focusing on their online sales. And it's working. 

And so I wanted to invite you if you're interested in really leaning in and scaling your sales online, join us for a business accelerator audit on that call, we're just going to take a look at your business, we're going to start by really getting clear on the three year vision for your company, because I really want to know where you want to go, because that's going to help inform the rest of it, then we're going to take a look at what's happened this year, what's going on now. And we're also going to investigate any roadblocks that are standing in the way. And if it seems like it's a good fit, we'll invite you to join our Momentum program, which is a year long program. 

It's actually a three year program with a one year commitment. Most people stay for multiple years. But we asked just for a commitment for a year because we know that within that year, you're going to make great results and great progress. And if you're interested in learning more about it, you can head on over to flourishthriveacademy.com/momentum/ and just check out what the program is about.

We have two levels, Accelerate level and Elevate level. Accelerate is the group version of the program where you get all of the benefits of being in the Momentum program in a group setting. So this is great for people who are just kind of in that phase where they're trying to cross that six figure mark or in their business, or maybe they're at the high five figures or somewhere in the middle there. And they're really trying to ramp up. And if you're somewhere where you're already past six figures, and you're really trying to route multiple six figures online and off with multiple streams, or even just your online business, we are here to help.

We are working with designers to help them build strong six, multiple six and seven figure online revenue streams. So it's really an ideal program for those of you who want to kind of stand out in a sea of competitors online, in particular, and offline as well. We work with you on all aspects of the business. But this is just a really powerful program. We're super excited about it. And I'm looking forward to really inviting you to start with us in January when things are going to kick off again for the new year. So if you want to check that out, head on over to flourishthriveacademy.com/momentum/

All right, well, look, let's say the holiday season stressful always. And stress is typically up at this time. In fact, recent statistics show that 69% of people feel more stressed during the holiday season than other times of the year. And I can say probably everyone feels stressed right now because it COVID it's just like a different kind of time. And here's the thing. You know, for me, this year has been insanely stressful because we're doing a lot of things in the new year, we're doing our final revamp, I would say for a while of our Laying the Foundation Program, which is going live in January. And we've been doing a lot of work, getting bundles out to our community and other things delivering content to our community. And plus just the stress of having a family. I'm moving out of New York City, and so many other things all right around the same time.

Like literally Sundays, I feel like I'm going to implode. And there it's a real thing I think for a lot of people and there have been many tears out of my eyes just like thinking I can't handle anymore, but I know I'm strong. And I keep moving forward. And so I know that many of you can sort of feel me like feel that way like you got a lot on your plate right now. Not only are you trying to get your business going for jewelry designers in particular and anyone with a product to sell that is holiday, like focused and themed. It can be intense at this time of the year. I remember when I was doing my production line.

October and November were the most insane months of the year. We were working so hard and then by the time December came, we were sending out last minute orders direct to consumer orders and getting ready for a trade show that happened early in January. So it was intense and like a lot of money was going out the door, and we were getting a lot of money in, but also it was kind of like, Ah, you know, like juggling all the things. So just so you know, we're all in the same boat. And I'm going through the same stuff as you. And so I wanted to talk about some things that I do and just some ideas for you to de stress to kind of stay grounded during the holiday season. Because you need it, let's face it.

So the first is to really stick to your health routine. And for me, it's eating healthy, for the most part. I mean, I do love my chocolate and hamburgers. But other than that, I used to be a vegetarian. For many years, the only thing I ever missed was hamburgers, and I still love them. So I went off the vegetarian diet, and I still eat primarily vegetarian, but I do love a burger now, and then I'm not gonna lie. And I also love dessert. But other than that, I try to stay healthy. So I eat healthy foods, lots of vegetables, and I'm really trying to eat a balanced diet so that there is a lot of things that are green on my plate at any given time.

Plus, for me, regular workouts are super duper important. So that is something that I've committed to for many, many years. In fact, I was with my friend, Kristie, who is an amazing healer and energy worker, she has a company called Songa. And I was just with them on a retreat over the weekend. And we were talking about like, what is our modality and like, how do we operate in the world? And I was thinking like, Oh, I'm probably like a heart, spirit or heart body. And she's like, actually didn't say spirit at all.

She said, I said, I think I'm heart body. And she's like, hmm, I'm a spirit body Tracy, like, I think you're actually a spirit body. And I was like, really, and she's like, because there's a couple of ways that people show up in the world to have a primary one and a secondary one either operated out of your body, your mind, your heart or your spirit. And as a longtime yoga practitioner, and teacher, I know this firsthand. So one of the things that we talked about was just like how I was operating and she's like, you know, you are very heart centered. And I'm using air quotes when I say that, because everyone has all of it. And you really always are coming from a loving place. But you are always like looking at things from a higher level, like really grounding and source and trying to get inspiration like channeling through you. And she's like that spirit. And she's like, and I know your body because correct me if I'm wrong, but you work out a lot, don't you? And I said yes, almost too much. And I literally workout at least four times a week since I've been in Arizona, I workout probably less than I used to.

Because living with a partner and kids and all that stuff as it puts me on a little bit of a different schedule. But at the same time I try to work out with my trainer at least twice a week, I try to go on walks at least twice a week. And when I can I go to a dance classes or do a dance class at my place, and or other exercise like yoga and other things. So, you know, I used to average about five to six times a week. But now I'm really more like five to four to four to five times a week. And that's fine with me. But it's important to keep moving and doing something great. 

So I really want to challenge you. And you could take a note right here to just do something at least three times a week, it might be doing some light yoga in the morning, taking a walk when you feel stressed, it might be going hard like I do that's it's totally up to you if you're like a fitness person. Or maybe it's just you know, doing something fun, like taking your family and turning on the radio and doing a dance party that is one of my absolute favorite things to do. I have these little nieces that live in California. And whenever I go to my brother's house, we have dance parties. And there I have to tell you, those little ones are pretty good dancers and we have a blast. And it's super fun.

So number two on this is to plan ahead. Now, the holidays for a lot of us simply mean that there was a lot more added to our regular to do list. So when you anticipate these tasks, by blocking out time in advance to get everything done, without feeling like you have to juggle both your work brain and your holiday brain, you're going to be getting out ahead so set aside specific days for shopping or baking or connecting with friends and other activities. And stick to it you know, mark it on your calendar so that you know well in advance which days you might want to fit into that little extra work in it to make the upcoming day off for festivities and fun. And after all, when we actually enjoy the holiday season, it makes it a lot better, right. And we deserve to enjoy this time. And I know right now you're going to be busy but at least hopefully you can take a little time off between the Christmas and New Year's break if you have that chance.

It just makes it easier so that on those days that you're working, you're actually working and on those days that you're running errands or doing holiday plans you're actually focused on those things and not getting distracted. Now the next part of this is to determine your priorities. Now I talk about this a lot in our Diamond Insiders community. This is our community where we help with implementation and growth forLaying the Foundation Program is centered around business development growth and primarily helping people get to that $100,000 marker in their revenue. So if you're you've taken our Laying the Foundation Program and you're in there, you know what I'm talking about. 

One of the things that we do every single week is we talk about weekly priorities, daily priorities, monthly priorities. And these are really just goals or targets that you have. And the reason why I call them priorities and commitments is because we want to be focused on just three things at a time. When we do more than that, we start to feel overwhelmed. I mean, I'm probably an exception, because I can have a lot more on my plate and not feel overwhelmed. But I'm always lasering in. Okay, what is it that I need to get done today? What is it that's going to move the needle fastest? What is it that I can't put off tomorrow or next week or whatever, and I focus on those things, and I knock them out.

So ask yourself these questions at the beginning of each week, especially during the holiday season, likely that you should have like top three priorities for the week. And then each of every single day of that week, that your priorities for the day should backup those three priorities in the week. Now, on the flip side, I want you to be mindful of not letting things that are not your top priority actually sneak in, especially when you got a lot going on. Because when you feel your temperature starts to spike, down to COVID way or just like you're getting frustrated or angry or feeling out of sorts, or maybe your Aunt Karen said something about your home.

Remember that arguing with her is not really a top priority right now. Stay calm and grounded. Anyway, don't worry about it. But you know, I mean, you get that joke, you get it. Okay, number four, go for a walk outside. You know, I talked a little bit about this on the health and fitness routine. But walking there's something really therapeutic and meditational about walking and when stress is building up and kind of budding, it might be a good time to just take a brisk walk outside, a little fresh air. Even if you're in a cold area where it's snowing, it can be really refreshing. And sunlight actually goes a long day not only to release tension, but also to help you breathe deeply. And to improve your mood.

You know, vitamin D is one of the things that you get from being in direct sunlight without sunscreen. And while most of us don't want to be outside too long without sunscreen, it's really important for your skin to soak up some sun so that you get that vitamin D dose. And in fact, right now even more than ever vitamin D helps boost your immune system and makes you feel better. So if you're one of the lucky people who hasn't gotten COVID yet, or been sick this season, you definitely want to be stocking up on that. And you might be also thinking like, yeah, yeah, Tracy, I am not going to actually do it.

Well, there's a little bit more convincing. The rhyme and repetition of walking has a tranquilizing effect on your brain and decreases anxiety and improves sleep. So if you're an insomniac, like me, and you struggle with sleeping or you're kind of anxious like I am, then go for a walk. Also, in addition to fighting anxiety, it can also help you beat the winter blues. Dr. Judith Orloff raves about a daily walk, or even just working outdoors in the sunlight can help you boost your serotonin and reduce seasonal affective disorder.

So it tried moving your bench or desk closer to a Sunday window or bring your laptop outside to work on responding to some emails or whatever it might be. You know, earlier this year, Jason and I put some patio furniture in. I'm calling it patio furniture. It's actually like a lounge, like a lounge chair and like a couch outside because when I came to move here, I was like, how come there's no furniture outside on your deck or your backyard? And we finally got that going. And we use it all the time and is amazing. love being outside. Number five, be kind to yourself. Now. Why would we like to convince ourselves that if we don't get everything done right now that the world would fall apart? Well, sometimes we have to be our own worst enemies, or sometimes we are we don't have to be. And we create a ton of stress in our lives simply because we aren't really being nice or kind to ourselves like, okay, raise your hand if you got that negative self talk train going on in your head. So it's hard I get it. One of the things that we work really strategically on with our members in Momentum is getting their head in the right place and having a positive mindset, because at the end of the day, mindset is everything.

Have you ever heard the phrase done is better tha perfect? Okay, all you perfectionist out there, I gotta tell you something, because it's true. cut down on the tasks on your list that are not essential in your business in this moment, stop overthinking or beating yourself up. If it's not perfect. imperfect action is better than no action. And the sooner you take these actions, the sooner you'll be able to just kick back and relax with your friends or your family or your partner or whoever it is, instead of just kicking your own ass all the time, which is not really fun or good for anyone.

So anyway, just want to remind you the moral of the story, don't sweat the small stuff, just get it done. And you can always improve later. You know, I was talking with Jason today and we were sharing a story about a friend we were just talking about a friend of ours who's going through a hard time and he's like, you know, this friend was saying like I just don't trust myself and my decisions and Jason said, well, what would happen if you just made a decision, and if it wasn't something you wanted to do, you made another decision to react to that decision, like, your decisions and your actions right now don't have to be like forever, like, you can always improve on them later. So don't stress out about that.

Number six, streamline your business operations. Now, this is a funny one, because this is like me speaking to myself, I made a commitment to my team. This week at our team meeting, we are simplifying next year. And we are only focusing on like our three core offerings. And that's it, we're not creating any more new stuff, with the exception of the stuff we already have, because we have amazing stuff to offer. And our business bundles took off this year. And we're super excited about it. And that was a lot of work we're redoing are Laying the Foundation program at the beginning of the year. And so so much more Momentum is taking off. Our DI is a great community, for people who are in the Diamond Insiders, they know just like they're working towards, like getting their goals done and making big progress, which is amazing.

So I will tell you, that will create a lot less stress. And one of the reasons why I've been pushing people to think strategically about how they're operating in their business is if you're spread so thin, maybe it's time to start streamlining your business and focusing on like just one or two or three strong revenue streams. And that's it. And right now more than ever, that online revenue stream is going to be the most powerful important, because that's where no matter what is happening in the world, you're going to be able to reach people. So I want you to think about this. What can you do to actually streamline your business? And where in your business?

Do you run into the most issues or stressful situations? So answer those questions. And if they keep popping up, it might be a good time to start researching new systems or tools to try. Now one example is your social media and email content, make sure that you're utilizing scheduling tools so that you can create your content in advance, schedule it at the time that you want it to be released, and then forget about it later. 

This can significantly reduce your daily stress, I always encourage you to test things out first to make sure that you know it's not messing with the algorithm. Algorithms have been making a lot of changes lately. So you got to keep an eye on that. But you also want to make sure that you have an online shop that is equipped with tools to send you auto alerts about your inventory levels. I mean, Shopify does a lot of this customer messages or updates you need to your website. So if there's things going on, you want to make sure that you know about it and that you have this automated and that you're actually checking so that you can get those done easier.

Number seven, look for the silver linings. We could all use this lesson this year 100%. Now life is unpredictable. And not everything is within your control or our control or anyone's control. So yes, not everything is going to go your way this holiday season. And that's okay. It can be really easy to get lost in what's going wrong in your business instead of looking at all the positive things that happened in your days. So to combat that negativity cloud, acknowledge from the get go, that there will always be some sort of challenge that you're going to face in your business. And then that way, the challenges come when they come, I should say, you won't be surprised, you'll actually be ready. And then instead of dwelling on the negatives, make a quick list at the end of the day of everything that went right. I like to start the day with a gratitude list. You can also end the day that way. All the unexpected kindness, laughs and positivity. make a big difference. And don't forget to celebrate those moments, whether they're big or small.

And then finally, number eight, invest in yourself. Now the holiday season often has us thinking or worrying about other things. 24/7, what gifts to get the family navigating employees or partners, and maybe it's time out of the office, or maybe it's managing customer requests or questions. At the end of the day, have you taken care of yourself. Now, you have to block out time and energy to invest back into yourself. After all, you're the visionary, the artist, the genius behind your business, when you invest in yourself or reflect in all areas of your life, too. So book a massage, order essential oil diffusers, invest in a course or in a program like momentum to learn something new or to get mentorship for an entire year next year content. Or just take a day off.

You know, I've had this big goal of taking Friday's off every week for a very long time. Maybe it's time to do that, right. And you could just do something that you love, maybe go get a massage or go to the spa or take a walk or eat a black and white cookie, whatever works for you. Now I know it can be hard to justify all of this during the busy holiday season. But I promise you'll be happier and healthier and the state of your business will too.

Wow, that was a lot I feel like this episode was actually something I needed more for myself than for you. So you're welcome. If it was helpful, I hope it was but at the end of the day, you know my goal is to really support you in your business and 2021 is coming up. We have a brand new start and a lot of new beginnings in a lot of ways. I don't like to talk about politics or anything like that on the podcast, but there's a lot of changes. And at this point, there's still some uncertainty. And that's okay. But whatever is coming, just know that the universe has designed it this way, right?

You know, we are in a space in time and it is a really unique time and period. And we have the power to make big changes and impact not only with our business, but with everything that we do. And so I really want to encourage you, like if you're ready to really like kind of ditch like having to rely on someone else, or having to rely on an outside job or having to rely on all these other revenue streams to really take your power back, I want to encourage you to lean into your online digital marketing strategy in 2021. And we love to support you in that.

So if you're a designer or maker, or business owner, who really wants to build a solid six figure, direct to consumer online revenue stream using your website as your tool, I'd love to encourage you to think about joining our Momentum program it is by application only. And you have to fill out that application through a business accelerator audit. So I want you to head on over to flourishthriveacademy.com/momentum/ to check out the program there and fill out that application and the business accelerator audit form. And then we're gonna just ask you a series of questions about you and your business and some of your goals. And if it seems like it's a good fit, we'll reach back out to you. And you'll book a call with my girl, Natasha, she is awesome.

So that is all for now. Thank you so much for joining me today, I am thrilled to bring you this podcast every single week. And one more favor before I go. If you haven't done so yet, I would love to ask you for a gift. This will be my Christmas gift you can give it to me, which is to rate and review the show. If you haven't done that yet. We have hundreds and hundreds of five star ratings. And I would love to get some more if you're enjoying what you're listening to. I would love to know what you love about it. And if you're compelled to give a five star rating that's always helpful. And the reason why this is helpful is how I have pushed the show out to others just like you who need the support. When we get a bunch of five star ratings and great reviews. It helps push this podcast out into the apple podcast algorithms.

Now you can rate a review on any podcast app where they have ratings and reviews. And the one thing to note though, is that Apple is one of the biggest. It's the place where most people listen to podcasts. I think 85 to 90% of all podcasts are listen on the apple podcast app. So that's typically where we would love for you to rate and review the podcast. So thanks so much for listening today. If you're inclined to do that, I would be so grateful. And we are super excited to have you in this community. So thank you for trusting me with your earbuds today. This is Tracy Matthews, signing off and I hope you have a distressed and delightful holiday season.

Click here to download the show notes

Stick To Your Routines

When the holidays kick in it can be way too easy to let go of the healthy routines that keep you going. 

All the festive events, late nights, and rich foods can really catch up with you and actually add to your stress. Especially when you’re trying to juggle business responsibilities at the same time!

I know it’s hard, but try to stick to your healthy habits as much as possible. As we head into the holiday season, write down your non-negotiable health routine.

Whether it’s moving your body in some way at least 3 days per week or committing to planning healthy meals during the weekdays so you can feel guilt-free during the weekend events, writing down these choices somewhere can really help you stick to it!

Determine Your Priorities

You probably already have a lot on your plate, and there’s always more right around the corner. Don’t let it sneak up on you.

At the beginning of each week in the holiday season, ask yourself:

  • What are the top three most important things you need to do for your business to be successful this week? 
  • What are the top three most important things you need to do with and for your loved ones this week? 

Focus on knocking those out of the park. Anything else you do is just a cherry on top of the sundae.

Invest in Yourself

The holiday season often has us thinking or worrying about others 24/7 – what gifts to get the family, navigating employees and partners’ time out of the office, managing customer requests or questions…

When will you make time to take care of yourself?

You have to make a conscious effort to block out time and energy to invest back in yourself. After all, you’re the visionary, the artist, the genius behind the business!

So, book that massage, order the essential oil diffuser, invest in a course to learn something new or take that Friday afternoon off to do an activity you love. Whatever self-care looks like for you, don’t let it fall to the wayside just because you’re busy. just for fun.

I promise, you’ll be happier and healthier – and the state of your business will be too!

xo, Tracy


Marketing That Matters Bootcamp

Momentum Program

Laying the Foundation

Twyla Dill

Mikel Lefler

Joyia Jewelry



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