This is the last episode of season three! And for this episode I wanted to sit down and have a metaphorical coffee with you to catch up with how things have really been since returning to Blue Jay work following my burnout last summer.
I talk about fearing burnout again, excitement for new projects and get a little (OK, very) vulnerable about money goals. I hope it’s an interesting look behind the scenes of someone working slowly but surely toward their dreams.
I’m not sure when the podcast will be back, but I know it will be back. For now though, I’m excited about new projects while Seedling takes a well-deserved rest.
You can listen to this episode wherever you get your podcasts or here:
Links and further reading
- Taking a break from Blue Jay
- Notes from the hiatus
- Coming back from burnout
- Medium profile
- Ko-Fi account
- My newsletter
For this final episode of season 3 I really just wanted to sit down and have a metaphorical coffee with you, catching up on how things have been since burning out last summer, how I’m *really* getting on with all things Blue Jay and what I hope to work on moving forwards. So grab a drink, get comfortable and let’s catch up.
Hello everyone, how are you doing? I have a quick confession to start our chat today – I was planning on there being two more episodes in this season to make it the same length as previous seasons and even have the topic ideas written down. But in all honesty I’ve gotten to a point where I really want to move onto a new project and – this is something I’ll be getting into later in the episode – but I’ve realised I simply can’t do all the things.
With me changing up my podcast schedule as well and having episodes go out every couple of weeks, this season has felt long, despite it technically being shorter than other seasons. I love this podcast and it’s not something I’ll be stopping any time soon, but I feel like I’ve run out of steam with it right now and that’s a sign to me that it’s time for a little break. I also really like the fact that we’re ending the season on a round number of episodes, it feels real satisfying.
So for this last episode I just wanted an honest chat about how things have been going and where I’m at following my burnout last summer. If you missed it, the first couple of episodes of this season talked about my break and how I was coming back from burnout – but I recorded those in October last year, so yeah, I guess I just wanted to follow up 6 months on.
It’s been a really interesting 6 months. Initially I was really fearful of doing too much too soon and my response to that was to throw out all schedules and expectations. I didn’t even set an alarm on Blue Jay Fridays, instead I let myself have slow mornings reading before doing typically just one task.
I let go of the coaching side of the business and leaned in to the things I enjoyed. I started writing on Medium and wrote some pieces that I’m really proud of. I wrote the odd blog here and there, including a couple of interviews which was fun and of course I started the podcast up again – going at a pace that suited me.
I posted on Instagram if and when I felt like it and kinda just shared whatever came to mind. I kept up with my newsletter and also set up a Ko-fi account in an attempt to make a little money to support the work.
All of this was great, it gave me time to be creative again and it was exactly what I needed. As I got towards the end of 2020 though I was feeling an itch to do… more. And when I say more here, I don’t mean more content, I mean something more impactful.
I’d already made the decision to change my title from self-worth coach to self-worth educator and realised that I wanted to do exactly that – educate in a meaningful way.
And since we’re being honest here – I also wanted to make some money.
When I reduced my working hours at my day-job, I took a pay cut. And I’ve not been able to bridge that gap since. I’m incredibly proud of the work I’ve done with Blue Jay and the impact it’s had on others, but I realised I was at a point where I really needed something back from it. And as much as I wish I could be content with just the fulfilment I get from this work… I have bills to pay, I have a life to lead.
Dan and I want to buy a house in the not too distant future and with me earning less money than I used to, it feels quite out of reach.
I’m really pleased I made my Ko-fi account as a non-committal way for people to support the free content I offer, but the reality of the situation is that I’ve had three people buy me coffees since setting it up 6 months ago, one of those being my mum. So while it’s a lovely thing to have and I plan to keep it and perhaps think of ways to make it more appealing, I also need to get realistic about making money from Blue Jay, now I know this is still a goal I have.
So I set myself a very loose intention for 2021 to be the year I make *some* money from Blue Jay. I literally haven’t even put a number on it. I want the year to be experimental, trying different things to see what you enjoy receiving from me and what I enjoy creating. Hopefully by the end of the year I’ll have a better idea of the products and services I can offer through Blue Jay that will support both you and me.
The first foray into this plan I mentioned in the last episode, and that’s an audio course that will be hosted on Listenable. And it was creating this that gave me the spark of hope that I could make Blue Jay something. That it could be more than a passion project. That I could find my way with it again.
Creating this course has also led me to push myself again, which has felt good but also a little scary. I let some boundaries slip and the spark quite quickly turned into a fire I wasn’t sure how to control.
The subject line from my last newsletter was ‘seeking balance, not burnout’ and I think that articulates where I’m at now. I want to find a way to make Blue Jay what I know it can be, without harming myself in the process. I need to be realistic about only having one day a week to work on it. I need to tune in when boundaries are being crossed. I need to let go of comparison to other businesses people work on full time. I need to be OK with going slow.
This means not trying to do all the things at once. I simply can’t write constant blogs, put out constant podcast episodes, show up on social media, write newsletters and work on big projects like creating courses all at the same time.
I need to create a routine that works for me. A routine that shifts in phases as I move my focus. I haven’t quite figured out what this looks like yet – but this is why I decided from the very beginning to create this podcast in seasons. So when a season ends I can start work on another project.
Over the next couple of Fridays I plan to take time to learn some new things, reflect on what I’ve learnt and make a plan with this knowledge. As soon as I know when the audio course will be live, I’ll focus on promoting it. I also want to start work on the next project I have in mind which is going to be a new e-book.
If you’re subscribed to my newsletter you will have received my first e-book, ‘Growth Spurt: sprout + seedling’ which is all about identifying limiting beliefs and starting your self-worth journey. This book was always meant to be the first of a series and now I want to start the second, which will be ‘Growth Spurt: vegetative and budding’. This will be about pushing through fear, building emotional resilience, finding your why and believing in yourself. And this time I’m going to be selling the e-book (again, this was the original plan with the first e-book but then burnout happened and I made it a freebie) and I also want to offer some bundles where you buy the book and get some one-to-one coaching support from me on top.
So yeah, I’ve got lots of ideas firing in my mind right now and it feels exciting – but I want to tread carefully. It’s so incredibly hard trying to find balance when you have dreams and passions… and if you can resonate with anything I’ve spoken about in this episode, I hope you’re reassured that you’re not alone. This stuff is hard. But ultimately it’s worth it, to me anyway.
So there we got, that is where I’m at right now. I’m not sure when this podcast will be back, but please know that it will be back. It’s one of my favourite ways to connect with you and I love creating it. If you want to keep up to date with the projects I’m working on, I’d recommend signing up to my newsletter and following me on Instagram as that’s where I’ll be during the break. And yeah – let’s make this a conversation, I’d love to hear how you’re getting on at the moment and what you’re working on, find me on Instagram @katbluejay.
Thank you so much for listening to the podcast, a huge thank you to those who share in their stories, those who message me about it, those who leave ratings and reviews – it really does mean the world to know there is someone on the other end of the microphone.
I’ll be back when I’m back and until then, as always, please take care.