An inside look at running a business

Updated: Mar 16




When I first launched my business - March of 2019 - I agonized over what to call myself.


Soulful Food and Body Image Coach?

Food and Body Mindset Coach?

Mindfulness & Intuitive Eating Coach?


I came up with many lists trying to find the perfect "label" for myself. The box I belong in.


To this day, I'm still not 100% set on a particular title to describe the type of coaching I do (I'm open to suggestions and feedback 😉), but I had a huge "a-ha" moment about my current job title.


I'm a business owner & entrepreneur.


THESE are the titles that describe what I do on a daily basis. THESE are the titles that I embody as I walk through the world. THESE are the mindsets I hold when I'm learning new things & meeting new people.


Coaching is a small portion of what I do. And saying I'm a coach doesn't paint nearly the full picture.


✨Running a business takes time, energy, determination, grit, organization, dreams, plans, follow-through, and risks.✨


So for those of you who ask me:


"How's your business going?"

"How do you spend your days?"

"How many clients do you have"


This post is for you! Here's an inside look at what I do every day, where I put my energy, and break down all the different elements of running a business.

Content Creation


Little did I know, when I started this business, that I was about to spend 80% of my time writing.


Each blog post is 3-4 pages single spaced.


Each email is 1-2 pages single spaced.


I write a lot.


The main types of content I create are:


  • Blog posts - like this one. For the first 9 months of my business I published a new blog post every Monday. I've since dropped down to every other week so I have more time to do 👇 all the things listed below.

  • IG graphics for posts and stories - Canva* is my best friend. Canva allows me to feel like a graphic designer while having zero training. It's great. I either use a picture for my posts or design a graphic in Canva, write the caption, and schedule my posts and stories for week in Planoly*.

  • Pins for Pinterest - For every blog post I write, I create 5 pins advertising it (with Canva) and then use Tailwind* to schedule all of my pins. I post approx. 30 pins a day to Pinterest, but I schedule all of this in advance with Tailwind (A true God-send if you want to be active on Pinterest).

  • Freebies - I have a collection of free downloads I've created. Some are posted explicitly on my website, some are sent in emails, and some are included in blog posts. Again, I use Canva* for all my design needs.

  • Emails - I write weekly, Monday emails for my readers and also write extra emails when I'm launching a new service or announcing a big update. Convertkit* is the email martketing platform I use and love. They allow me to segment and tag my list which means I can label you and your interests so that I only send relevant emails your way!

  • Pictures - When I'm not using Canva to design a cool graphic for IG, I need pictures. This means I ask Chris to take pictures of me often, I use the self-timer on my phone, and I regularly schedule "photo shoots" where I go around and take pictures to specifically fit my brand. I use Lightroom Mobile to edit all of my photos.

Content Planning


As you can see, I create a shit-ton of content.


But I can't just blast it out into the world at random. I need to be strategic and thoughtful with what I share and when.


Thank you Google for coming to the rescue. I pay for GSuite which allows me to have an email address that doesn't end in @gmail.com and unlimited storage space.


I use Google Sheets and Google Docs for EVERYTHING.


In Sheets I have a calendar for blog posts and a calendar for IG posts.


In Docs I draft all of my blog posts, IG posts, and emails so that I can reuse and re-purpose content as needed.

Networking


If I'm not writing, I'm most likely talking. Preferably over coffee.


To be honest, it took me about 10 months before I realized how critical networking was to my growth and success.


👉Networking in-person looks like:

  • Meeting up with 2-4 professionals A WEEK to discuss the ways in which we can support each other and/or be business friends who are in this crazy thing together. #gamechanger

  • Attending networking events

  • Attending festivals as either a vendor or customer and introducing myself to as many people as possible


👉Networking online looks like:

  • Pitching myself for podcasts. I loveee being on podcasts. It's refreshing to talk about my passions for food and body image rather than write about them. A different side of my personality comes out.

  • Emailing professionals in the field - I reach out to fellow helping professionals to schedule virtual coffee-dates, phone calls, or email back and forth about what we do.

Engaging with current audience


I love you! Yes, you!


Engaging with my audience means showing up on IG and checking out all your beautiful posts, commenting, replying to DMs, replying to emails, and replying to FB messages.


Building and maintaining relationships is one of my favorite ways to spend my time!

Setting goals & creating a business plan


I set quarterly goals and break those goals down into monthly, weekly, and daily tasks.


These goals and tasks get put on different Trello boards and then transferred into my paper planner - The Passion Planner.





Accounting


Thankfully I love numbers and so this aspect of running a business makes me very happy. 🤓


  • Currently I track my mileage manually and note them in a Google Sheet, but once I have some extra $ to spare in my business I'll invest in Mile IQ. This app tracks all your driving miles and prompts you to categorize it as a business or persona.l 👌👌👌

  • I do my bookkeeping with YNAB* and Wave. YNAB serves as my budgeting software (which I also use for my personal life and 10/10 recommend) and Wave is how I send invoices.

  • Taxes. Mwahaha. Nobody told me that hiring an accountant to do my business taxes would cost $500. Sooooo. I did them myself this year via TurboTax. With a few hours of research + my very detailed and itemized expense tracking (thanks YNAB), I figured it out!


Website development and maintenance


I designed my website and all the copy on it using Wix. And I make a point to revise and revamp different sections of my website regularly.


Google Analytics is a helpful tool that shows me where people are spending time on my website, what pages get the most traffic, and how long people stay on a certain page.


These stats help me know what's working and what can be tweaked.


I loveeee working on my website.

Continuing Ed


I spend a lot of time learning new things. Business things and food/body image things.


I'm constantly reading books, listening to podcasts, watching YouTube videos, and reading blogs. Constantly. It brings me joy and keeps me moving forward.


Coaching

I'm a coach!!! Let's not forget the main attraction!


As my business continues to grow, I'll have the choice of taking on more clients and hiring out some of ☝☝ the tasks mentioned above. Or I'll find ways to serve my clients other than 1-on-1 coaching, like groups or online courses - so I can serve more people in less time.


As a coach I:

  • Track leads - I have a Google Sheet where I keep track of people I've had meaningful interactions with or people who have expressed interest in my program

  • Onboard new clients - (contract, invoice, intake paperwork)

  • Support current clients via coaching sessions, Voxer, and emails

  • Continue to modify and improve The Soulful Food and Body Experience

  • Run an Intuitive Eating Basics group here in Greenville, SC

Speaking


Lastly, I enjoy speaking and presenting.


In the past year I've given a lecture in a college Psychology class, preached a sermon, presented at two wellness festivals, and led an in-person workshop.


YAY! That's a wrap!


As you can see, being a "Food and Body Image Coach" involves way more than hopping on Zoom with my clients.


In review, here are all my favorite apps and programs.

Ones with a * mean I get some sort of a bonus if you subscribe (aka they are affiliate links).


  • Trello - Trello is my life. It hkeeps literally every aspect of my business organized from content ideas to setting goals.

  • Grammarly helps me produce content with minimal spelling and grammatical errors.

  • Canva* - for any sort of graphic design needs

  • Planoly* - for planning my IG content

  • Tailwind* - for planning my Pinterest content

  • Convertkit* - the email marketing software I use

  • GSuite - as my main storage hub of all my documents, spreadsheets, and emails

  • Mile IQ - for tracking business miles

  • YNAB* - for budgeting (personal and business)

  • Wave - as my free accountant

  • TurboTax - for taxes

  • Wix - for all things website

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Web design by Chelsea Hester 

Photography by Re-Vive Photography,

Ali Van Eck, & Chris Bradt