About the Episode
Welcome to the last instalment of our Slow Business series. If you haven’t listened to the past couple episodes, do so now!
In this episode, we are going to be looking at how to plan and strategise a slow business because if we look at slow business as an extension of the slow living movement. We know that slow living is about living in the present, right? So it’s less chaotic and there are different ways in which you can embrace that.
There are ways that we can plan ahead and there are ways that we can strategize and really formulate a plan that feels really good for your energy. That’s what I want to go through with you today. We are going to talk about how we can still be reactive and still have slow businesses, but we can also put a plan in place so that we are not completely walking into the unknown. Enjoy!
Topics discussed in episode #61
- How to be reactive within your slow business while also having a plan in place
- Why we have to embrace cyclical nature if we want to have a slow business
- Remembering that you’re allowed to change your mind as a business owner
- The power of using journaling as a tool for self inquiry and self auditing and questions you can ask yourself to find what you need
- The reminder that you can craft launches to match your energy and your current needs
- What’s coming up next for Entrepreneurial Outlaws
Connect with Melanie here:
*This is a raw and unedited transcript.
Melanie Knights (00:02): Hey there, Outlaws. Welcome to episode 61. I am sitting here feeling very cozy in my home office. And of course there is an airplane going ahead right now. Now I’ve been told by Hailey that you cannot hear these airplanes, but I just wanna, in case you can, I’m, I’m apologizing right now for, for the air force. Anyway, on behalf of them, I apologize. I’m sitting here in my office feeling super cozy. I made myself a nice little homemade mock this morning in my witches brew up. I’ve got some candles going and it really feels cozy. And I wanted to just take a moment to say that I really hope when you listen into these episodes, you can recognize that this is very much just like a conversation. I do sometimes have notes. I do plan out what we’re gonna talk about. Of course, us, we’ve had a whole theme for the month of January, but at the same time, I really value these as a way of connecting. Melanie Knights (01:09): And so my hope is always to be transparent with you to really allow you to take what you need from every single conversation. And there’s going to be times when you’re like, eh, this isn’t necessarily for me, but I’m always striving to kind of show up as I am. And that’s been really important for me because there have been times when I’ve started recording this show that I felt like it has to look a certain way, or I feel like I have to do things in a certain way, but I’m just so satisfied with being able to sit down out and press record, because this was something that I had wanted to do for such a long time, knowing that this was my medium. This is the way I get to connect with people every single week. And I’m so grateful that you are here as well. Melanie Knights (01:54): So I just wanted to start that off. Now, this episode, we are gonna be continuing the conversation about slow business as promise. This is gonna be for now our final episode about slow business, but we are going to be looking at how to plan and strategize a slow business. Because if we look at slow business as an extension of the slow living movement, we know that slow living is about living in the present, right? So it’s less chaotic. We, you know, there are different ways in which you can embrace that. I don’t think I certainly don’t spend, or I’m certainly not completely living in the slow movement. I still have devices. I am. I’m not someone who necessarily functions really well and all the time being slow, but I really love having low business. So you don’t have to be like all or nothing. It’s fine. Melanie Knights (02:47): You can just embrace the parts of it that you really want to. So if we look at slow business as being an extension of slow living, we know that slow living is about living in the present moment. Therefore, our businesses are more reactive, right? So instead of us planning ahead, six months a year, however long it might be, we might be looking at reacting to what’s happening around us, but that kind of goes against surprise, surprise. Most of what we see in the online space, we’re told to plan ahead, we’re told to have a content plan. And to be honest, I spent a little bit of time this morning, planning out a number of weeks of this podcast. So there are ways that we can plan ahead are ways that we can strategize and really formulate a plan that feels really good for energy. And that’s what I wanna go through with you today. Melanie Knights (03:41): I wanna talk about how we can still be reactive. We can still have slow businesses, but we can also put a plan in place so that we are not completely walking into the unknown. Unless of course, that is how you want to be. Because for the longest time, I used to believe that like flying by the seat of your pants was the worst thing you could do because that gave me real, real stress. But the reality was all my planning wasn’t growing my business. And that was the thing I found super hard was that I saw people who were admittedly flying by the seat of their pants and their business day to the next, just doing whatever was happening and were quote unquote successful. And I really struggled with that because it went against everything I had ever been taught both in, you know, outside of the online space. And then within the online space, we’re told to always have a plan. And I think there is beauty in planning. I think there is beauty strategizing, but there are so many things to consider. If you are looking to run a slow business, if you want to slow down, if you want to really build a business that allows you to rest and honor your needs, you can do both. And we’re gonna explore that today. So let’s get into episode number 61. Melanie Knights (05:21): I seriously planes. Melanie Knights (05:42): Okay. So let’s get into this. I hope that you are feeling super cozy today as well, sitting here. I obviously can’t sip on my Mo now, so it’s gonna be cold, but either way, I hope that you are feeling super cozy as well. Now we’re gonna be talking, as I said, about how to plan and strategize a slow business, because it feels like those two things cannot go hand in hand, but I’m here to tell you that they can. And I’m gonna share with you the ways in which I have been planning ahead. And as I said to you, I had actually spent a little bit of time this morning, planning out some podcast episodes. And at the end of last year, at the time of recording this at the end of 2021, I did love like brainstorming and idea planning and things that I had seeing in my brain. Melanie Knights (06:26): I got them out into my journal because that firstly frees up so much more bandwidth for me, energetically. And then I also looked at really practically. I wanted to look at them in a practical way. Okay. What is most important to me right now? So we’re gonna get into all of that in a moment. But first I want to just say that the first, one of the first things that we can do to help us embrace our slow business and still plan, because remember we are being kind of reactive. What we can actually look at is cycles because we are cyclical as human beings. We are cyclical, right? And there are seasons, oh, sorry. There are cycles all around us. Things like the seasons, right? Things like the seasons. There is the lunar cycle. There are cycles. Even if you bleed, then you have a menstrual cycle. Melanie Knights (07:23): We have cycles throughout our weeks and our months and our days, you know, night and day is a cycle, right? We, I was talking to my son, actually, this, my son this morning, we were talk walking into school and we were talking, he started asking me some question about, I don’t know, some made up thing about the moon and the sun. And if they had a fight who would win I can’t cope with questions like this, just for some transparency, because I’m like, why would they fight ? And that was my response. And he just looks at me as if, to say it didn’t need to be quite so deep mum, but I’m like, why would the moon and the, the sun fight, like they both have their presence in the, in the sky. We, we always know that the other one is gonna be there. Melanie Knights (08:05): And that kind of sent me off thinking about the moon. And I, I thought to myself, my God, what if one day we looked and the moon was never there. And obviously that probably wouldn’t happen. but I started think about just how, when we have the new moon and it’s in utter darkness, we know it’s gonna come back. We know it’s still there and we know we’re gonna see it again. So when it comes to looking at our slow businesses and planning ahead, we can kind of approach it in that way. Right? We can approach our businesses in cycles. You can choose to look at one specific cycle. You can look at multiple cycles. It really is up to you. And like, with everything that you’re gonna hear in today’s episode, I want you to take the things that resonate and just leave what doesn’t resonate right now. Melanie Knights (09:03): It could still be here. You can still come back to this. If that’s what you want to do, you don’t have to do everything. But the reason this is important is because when I look back at my journey into slow business, when one of the first things I actually had done back in, I think it was the end of 2019 is to start tracking my own cycles. And specifically I was tracking my menstrual cycle and I want to just reference episode 23, where we sat down and chatted with Ali CRA she is a cyclical living mentor. And we talked about cycles in that episode. Make sure you go and check out her on Instagram. She’s not on Instagram that often she’s got like, she’s doing such an outlaw thing with her grid, but she does have a free community or pairs you go community. Melanie Knights (09:52): And you can learn more about that there. But one of the things that you can do is she is kind of my cycle mentor as it were in terms of kind of getting into this and understanding it. And she has this incredible tracker. So make sure you go and check that out. We will link to it in the show notes, but I wanted to mention that because I think that’s a really great way of starting to just learn about cycles and there are other people doing it as well. So if you already are aware of cycles and you’re already kind of looking at cyclical living, that’s totally cool. But one of the ways we can do this is by really starting to track our own cycles. And as I said, this doesn’t have to be, you don’t have to be tracking when you bleed. Melanie Knights (10:34): You can. And I’ve had a huge amount effort doing that, but you could also be tracking just your energy. You can track your energy on a daily basis, a weekly basis on a monthly basis. You can also look at the lunar cycle. You can look at the eight phases of the lunar cycle and you can look at what each of those represents. We’re actually gonna have episodes coming up in February, where we are gonna be looking into that. So make sure you subscribe. So you get those episodes straight to your your phone, but we are gonna be talking about cycles kind of generally today, because I want to really use that as the anchor point, when we know where typically our energy is high and low, we can plan around that. And that’s the first thing we can actually plan ahead because we are more aware of our own energy. Melanie Knights (11:26): And there are things that you can look out for, even if you don’t bleed. So I just wanna make that really clear. Now I’m not gonna get into all of that today, but there are ways to continue tracking your energy. You can track, you can use an energy tracker, right? You can use your nurture tracker. If you’ve already downloaded that you can track your energy throughout the month. Throughout the day, you can look at how your energy ebbs and flows, where the peaks are and where it’s maybe dipping. And the more and more you do this, the more aware you will be of your energy. And it is really, really interesting. And you may already be fairly aware of when your energy is high and low on a, on a given day. I know that I’m a morning person. I know that my most productive time of the day is, is gonna be kind of before 2:00 PM, which is great, cuz my day kind of ends around that time. Melanie Knights (12:18): But the later I get, I know that I’m not gonna be kind of highly functioning. And that’s one of the reasons why I tend to do, you know, podcast episodes and all that kind of stuff earlier in the day. So this is a really wonderful and really gentle way of being able to plan ahead. It really helps you to recognize, okay, this is when I’m gonna have the most energy. And one of the things you can look at when you’re looking at your en energy throughout the month, we can, and even in the day is which kind of tasks you’re gonna complete. When are you going to launch? When are you going to promote something is the best time for you to be creative. When is the best time for you to plan? All of these things can play a factor. So can all, all of these things can play a part and they can be factored into your energy. Melanie Knights (13:05): And so understanding when your energy is going to be high and low also allows you to understand what you need from your business, because going to know, okay, well during this season, for example, let, let’s just say right now, as I’m recording this, we’re still in winter. Maybe the winter is a time when you really do wanna hibernate. Right? That typically is what we think of when we think of winter, but some of us are going to be respond. Some we’re gonna respond to the seasons in slightly different ways is because, Hey, we’re individuals and we’re human beings and we have our own cycles. So it is okay that if in the winter, maybe you have a little bit more energy or maybe there’s certain months where you have more energy. I want you to know that you do not have to fit into a box with this. Melanie Knights (13:51): Okay. It’s okay to listen to yourself. That’s really important. so understanding where your energy is, knowing what you need from every single layer of your business, right? Understanding what you need from every single layer of your business, because your business is layered. There are so many different things that we can be doing on any given day or any given week. Even if you have a team, I have support in my business, right? I have support from some incredible powerhouse people. They really help me to keep the business going. But at the end of the day, there are things that only I can do. And it still means that I work and I love my work and I love what I do. And that’s really important to me to be able to keep going. I don’t want to complet take a step back from my business. Melanie Knights (14:37): So I also need to recognize what I need. And I encourage you to do that as well, understand what you need from each year of your business. What do you need financially? What do you need emotionally? What do you need creatively? What do you need from your marketing and from your launches? What do you need in order to make it sustainable? We talked about that last week. So really check in with yourself, maybe grab your journal and sit down. And this is something I do every single month. When I’m planning out my business for the following month, especially, and more importantly, really imp I’m, I’m getting caught up in my words, , especially when you’re planning for a season, that’s why I was trying to say really understand what you need from that season of your business. Okay. So checking back in with yourself and looking at what worked in the previous season and then, okay, what do I need from this season? Melanie Knights (15:32): And also it’s okay. If things change, you’re allowed to change your mind, that’s really important. So as we’re starting to navigate this way of planning and strategizing, it does feel gentle. It feels slow. It feels nurtured. It is going to at times, feel super uncomfortable because if you have been used to hustle culture and this kind of grind mentality that we have to be on all the time, we cannot rest. This is gonna be really challenging. I’m not gonna lie. I have had so many conversations with myself in the last couple of years where I’m telling myself that I’m lazy and I, as a fat person, I have a real problem with that word. And it’s real, really hard for me to listen to my intuition when she is telling me that I’m not lazy, that I don’t need to do more, to be successful. Melanie Knights (16:21): And if I am happy and really fully nurtured with where my business is at, then that’s important. And that’s what we need to recognize when we’re listening to ourselves. So the other thing that we can do when we’re looking at planning ahead is like, how do we measure success, right? How do we measure success in our business? Because this is gonna be really important in helping you to plan ahead and, and strategize as well, because you may not want to measure a success in the number of followers. Maybe you don’t really want to use numbers, right? Maybe you’d wanna stay away from the vanity metrics. Maybe you are not really, you, you know, how much money you’re making and yes, you’re aware of what you’re doing and you’re aware of your numbers and what you need, but that’s not a driving force for your business, right. Melanie Knights (17:10): It’s not for me. And I know many of you whilst yes, we need to make money because we’re business owners and otherwise we just have really expensive hobbies at the same time that maybe isn’t a driving force. And so we don’t wanna be spending all of our time focused on that. So how are you going to measure success in your business? How are you going to use these kind of flag post or these market, these markers along the way, how are you check in and track and just be like, yeah, okay. You know what? I’m still going in the right direction. I’m still heading in the direction that I wanna be in. And so again, by knowing what you need, you can then lay out, okay, this is how I’m going to measure success in my business. So each month or each season, these are the things that I want to be looking at. Melanie Knights (17:53): And so for me, one of the things that I do is I look back at my business and I look at, you know, what was, what projects did I work on? How did I feel about those projects? How much time off did I have? How rested did I feel? I want to think about each part of, of my business individually, but also as a whole, I like to look at when I’m doing freelancing work. Okay. How did I feel about that? Because in any given week, they’re gonna be times where I’m like, I hate this but then the next day I might be like, this is fine. I’m happy. So I try not to focus on those things in the moment. Yes. I allow them to appear. I allow and I am, you know, I will vent or I’ll be off or whatever it is. Melanie Knights (18:33): But what I try to do is look back at the month as a whole, because as long as in the whole month or the whole season, I am really satisfied with what I’m doing and I’m really happy and I feel really good about it. Then that’s a good indication that I’m on the right track. If I look back and I’m like, that was. Then I’m obviously something needs to change. Something needs to shift. So that’s one of the reasons why I try to look at my business as a whole later on, rather than trying to do it in any given day or week, because sometimes it’s not always realistic. Maybe I’m just having a rap day. So I do like to measure my success in different ways. I don’t always focus on how much money I’m making or how many books have I sold. Melanie Knights (19:17): Those things are entirely relevant. I do wanna know that because I want to make sure that what I’m doing in my business is actually making a difference. But really for me, the ways I feel successful are when I hear stories from people, right? When I know I’m feeling really creative, where you, if I’m making money and I’m feeling really good about what I’m doing, that’s a great indicator that I’m on the right track. So check in with yourself and find out from, again, maybe you wanna grab a journal, sit down and do some journaling around how do I wanna measure my success in 2022? You know, how frequently do I wanna, I came with myself, am I gonna do it on a monthly basis? Maybe it’s gonna be every season. You can still do all your financial trackers and like move all your money around. Melanie Knights (19:59): You can do all of those things. But when it comes to tracking your success in a different way, if you want to look at how you feel emotionally or how you feel creatively or anything else, you can do that less frequently. And you can really use that to look as kind of the whole business instead of looking at each individual piece. So we talked about cycles. We’ve talked about knowing what you need. We’ve talked about measuring success and you can see there’s a really strong theme here. That journaling is going to play a massive part in this being able to plan, strategizing your business, really some self awareness and some slowing down right with we are building slow businesses. Therefore we need to be slowing down. We need to recognize that creating space around our schedules is gonna be super important for us. How much space you need is gonna be up to you, but using journaling as a tool for curiosity, for self inquiry and self auditing is so powerful because using this as a tool, it really helps you to ask better questions. Melanie Knights (21:01): And when I say ask better questions, I mean that you are asking yourself questions and being curious, rather than judgmental, there is no judgment or shame when you’re curious, because when you’re curious, you’re like, Hey, I wonder why I’m doing this. Hey, I wonder why I feel this way and allow yourself to be honest and open. And a journal is a beautiful place to do that, right? You can really, really let those things out. You can really, really be honest and transparent with yourself and you can come back to this again, when you’re looking at your business as a whole, you can come back to your journaling and you can review and you can check in and say, oh, you know what? This felt really good. And this is a really beautiful tool. If you are struggling with certain parts in your business, this is something that I started to do when I shifted, I launch formula because I, for the longest time, and I’ve talked about this before on the show, I would get to a launch, either opening a car or a couple of days in, and I would be exhausted, like burnt out. Melanie Knights (21:59): I wanna hide. I don’t wanna talk to anybody. I don’t wanna do any work. And I was miserable and I hated it. This one be years like years is, and I can’t believe that I didn’t break that cycle, but I had no other options or I didn’t know I had other options. I could not see what the other option was. And as I started to shift the way I launched and promoted and worked in my business, not only did I find things that worked for me, but what I also did was I started to really focus in on journaling during those launches. So even though I was a bit of a flaky journaler, I certainly didn’t do it every day. Back then, I was really, really intentional about writing down what I was doing and how I felt each day of a launch, because what I wanted to recognize was that if I felt really good at the end of a launch, what had I done differently? Melanie Knights (22:48): Okay. I found was that when I took care of myself and when I journaled and made sure I rested and made sure I asked for help when I did those things, lo and behold, everything felt so much easier. So I recognized that these things were really, really important and really, really valuable and things I needed during my launches. And it’s not only is going to be, it’s not always gonna be realistic that we can do this every time and it’s gonna look different. And sometimes like when I did a launch last year, I felt like the rug was pulled out from underneath me about a weekend. And I was like, holy, what am I gonna do? But I, again, I extended my launch even further. I was like, you know what, right now I’m going through some I, to slow down, I’m gonna have to accept the fact that I can’t be showing my face because my anxiety’s really high. Melanie Knights (23:37): And so I was able to say, you know what, it’s okay, this is my business. I’ll just extend things. But I had to recognize that and know what I needed. And that’s what is so important for me. And I think that when we can recognize our own needs, we are able to understand how we can make changes and shift. And remember it is your business. You can make changes ethically. , I’m gonna add that word in whenever, want to, you can make changes whenever you want to, you can shift things. You can shift, you know, the dates or the goal or whatever it is. It’s okay. So I also wanna talk a little bit about how we recognize our needs. Okay. Cuz I think this can sometimes be a little bit confusing. It’s like, well, I don’t know what I need. So we frequently get asked the question, well, what do you want? Right. That’s a question that people ask us all the time. What do you want? And I think it’s easy for us to know what we want, but it’s really hard for us to recognize what we need in any given moment. Some of us can really freeze up. I know people who, when I ask them, okay, what do you need right now? They don’t know they’ll freeze up and maybe you are the same. So here’s the simple way of recognizing what you need from your business. I want you to really excuse me. Melanie Knights (25:25): So I want to help you recognize what you need from your business. And I kind of put together this simple formula. I hope it’s simple for you to, you’re gonna, it’s gonna require a journal, right? So you’re gonna do some little bit of write, do a little bit of writing, but it’s gonna help you to recognize what you need in your business. So the first thing to do is to write down your core values. And by that, I mean what your core values are right now, because our values can change. We can have, there can be tons of things that we value things that are really important to us. But right now in your business, you might have like three or four core values. And that’s just because that’s the phase of business you’re in. So right. What are your core values in your business right now? Melanie Knights (26:11): What is most important to you? Okay. Values and most important. And then I want you to write down where in your business are you finding the most joy? What is making you happy? Right? What is making you happy? So if you want to do it visually, maybe a column of values and needs sorry, values and importance. And on the right hand side, maybe you’ve got a column where it’s like, these are things that are making me really happy. These are the things that I’m really, that are bringing me joy from there. I want you to kind of cross reference because if you can connect things that are really important to you, right? Your values with where you are getting the most joy, the things that are making you really happy, that is what you need, right? At the end of the day, we wanna be happy. Melanie Knights (26:58): We want, feel really satisfied with the work that we do. We want to know that we’re making a difference in a really positive and ethical way. At the same time, we want to make sure that we are not challenging our values, that we are not kind of just letting our boundaries go. And we are not just going against our values. We wanna do work. That is right. Not just easy. So when you can connect these two things together, this gives you what you need and when we know what we need and we work towards what we need, we find that we are doing work. That is both of value and it’s actually not gonna feel hard. It will feel easy because it’s work that we love it’s work. That brings us joy. It’s work. That makes us happy. It may not always be simple, but it can be easy. Melanie Knights (27:45): And that’s really important. So that allows us to kind of create this place of direction, right? So once we know what we need, we now are able to give ourselves a place of direction. We’re like, okay, this is what I’m focusing on. This is the direction I’m going in in my business. And this is one of the things that I start to do when I want to, you create some kind of plan in my business when I’m like beyond planning out content or planning episodes for the show. If I’m looking at okay, I wanna create a new community because for me, connection community are super freaking important. Also creativity, creativity. I feel like it’s all the seas , but community connection and up in my top values right now in my business, these are things that I really want and need. And I know that. Melanie Knights (28:31): And so I’m trying to look at ways in which I can really apply that throughout my entire business. How do I do that in my marketing? How do I do that? When I’m selling something? How do I do that? When I’m just connecting with people online, every layer of my business, those are things that I want to have and they’re things that I really want to feel. So I look at how I can apply that. That gives me a sense of direction. It gives me a place to focus my time and energy. And so ordinarily at the beginning of a year, I wouldn’t be launching anything. I have. I have spoken about this here. I’ve never, ever sold or launched anything in January ever in my business. I have thought about it. And then I’ve always been like, oh no, it feels horrific this month. Melanie Knights (29:16): I am launching something. I’m actually the time this episode airs, I’m actually in the midst of opening up the small business, snail mail collective, which is a paling community. And the reason I did that was because I was like, well, this feels like super amazing. People have already told me, they’re really interested. Let’s just do it. Like let’s just start the year off with snail mail, with pen paling, let’s just get on with it. But that was what felt really happy and joyful for me. And it met, it was focused on the things that are really important to me. It met my values where they are. So you can see how easily these things can shift is somebody who has raised her hand and said, I do not launch in January. I’m like, oh, well maybe now we do . But only when it feels really, really right. Melanie Knights (30:05): And this allows me, as I said, to have this sense of focus and direction, I knew that that’s what I wanted to focus on for January. I knew that that’s what I wanted to focus on this winter. And that’s where my attention has been. And that’s the things that I’ve been working towards now from there were what I will be doing, cuz I haven’t done it yet, but I will then be auditing. Right. I’m a big advocate for self audits. I think it’s so, so important. Being able to recognize, okay, what’s working. What isn’t was this a smart idea? Maybe in a couple of weeks, I’m gonna be like, that was the worst idea I ever had, who knows? But the thing is, we’re able to look and we’re able to be curious and we’re able to do it without shame or judgment and then move forward. Melanie Knights (30:48): So if at the end of this, I’m like, that was great. Or at the end of it, I’m like, that was either way. I know and I can recognize why that was. And I can audit that. I can make sure it’s somewhere where I’m gonna be able to remember. And I can take that with me into the next season. I can take that with me into the next year. When I decide I’m going to do something, I’ll go back and be like, Melanie. Remember what you did last year, either that worked or it didn’t, here’s the reasons why. So by knowing what we need, that gives us a sense of direction. It gives us a place to focus our attention, our energy, our time. You do not have to have like content written six months out in advance. That to me just feels terrifying right now. Melanie Knights (31:35): Absolutely not because I might change my mind. But the reality is that knowing where I’m gonna be focusing my attention and knowing that it’s something really, really feels good. It feels happy. It feels joyful. It really matches my energy already. The whole thing shifts. And knowing that at the end of this, no matter what happens, I’m gonna check in with myself and I’m gonna say, you know what? This worked, this didn’t and then move forward. I’m not gonna in that place of, if it didn’t work, I’m not gonna stay in this place of, well, this sucked, I’m such a failure. No, like that’s not welcome here. that we all have those feelings. And I know, but we can’t stay there. What we need to do is recognize that when we self-order, it is about curiosity, leave with curiosity, because that way you will not be judging yourself. Melanie Knights (32:26): And there is zero space for shame, cuz you can’t be curious and also be judgmental. So as you move through this business that is slow and beautiful and gentle, as you really learn how to implement more rest and hobbies and creativity and downtime, there are going to be times when you feel challenged, there are gonna be times when it feels really hard. There are gonna be times when your self doubt shows up. When this little voice tells you that if you did more, you’d be more successful. Sure. But you, you might also have to compromise so many other things. And that’s why I want you to really recognize what you need from your slow business. I want you to take the time to decide if you are going to really embrace a slow business. What does that mean for you? What does that look like? Melanie Knights (33:14): What does it allow you to do? So many journaling prompts coming out today’s episode. And I really, really encourage you to remember that you can take pieces that really work for you and put them together. Slow business does not mean that we have to be entirely reactive and that we have no idea what we’re doing from day to day. That doesn’t feel good for me at all. I like to have some idea of what I’m doing. Yes. Could I do better at living in the present moment AB so, but right now having some kind of plan really helps me to stay focused. And for me with the way the world is right now, I need that sense of focus. I need to know, okay, this is what I’m gonna be working towards. It gives me something to work towards, gives me like a container to work within. And so I encourage you to spend some time writing, use some of the prompts and some of the writing things that I’ve talked about today, allow yourself to really open up the space and create the space that you need to run a slow business because you can have both, you can have a slow business and you can have a plan and they absolutely can work together. Melanie Knights (34:28): So I want to say thank you again for being here with me for episode 61, I have really enjoyed these last few weeks of digging into our slow businesses together and really looking out what we need business owners, especially if we want to embrace that slow business. Now next week we are gonna be staying kind of a new theme. It’s a new month, it’ll be February and we’re going to be looking at the Luna cycle. We’re gonna be talking, we’re still be kind of staying within this FA this focus of, excuse me, this focus of slow business, but we’re gonna be shifting slightly and we’re gonna be looking at the Luna cycle and how we can really use that for journaling and for planning in our businesses, how we can help, how we can use the phases of the cycle to help us focus during during the month. Melanie Knights (35:17): So next week we actually do have a new moon, a new moon in Aquarius, my sign . So we are gonna have a new moon next week. And so on Thursday, next week’s episode, we’re actually going to look at the new moon and that’s what we’re gonna get into. So I’m gonna introduce you to the lunar cycle. We’re gonna get into what the phases are, where the energy is during the moon. And then we’re also going to be talking about how you can use the energy of the new moon to actually help you plan and journal and what to really be looking for and things to recognize as you go through that. So this month we’re gonna be focusing that we do have a guest coming this month, which I’m really sorry, next month, I should say that I’m really excited for you to see on that conversation and yeah, which is gonna continue this wonderful and gentle way of planning and growing our businesses together. Melanie Knights (36:07): Now, right now I did mention it earlier on in this episode, but right now I am currently so excited. My newest community, small snail ma is currently open and I say open, we really need to find new ways of talking about these things, but the, the imaginary doors are currently open and small business. Snail ma is super exciting because this, as I said is something that I’m feeling for a while. I was like, I love writing letters to, of people, to friends. I love receiving happy mail. It makes me so happy. Of course it makes me feel really creative and I’ve been doing it more and more. My friend and I constantly will share like little cards and letters. And it’s so nice when you don’t know if it’s coming as well. That’s really fun. And we were joking because we felt like teenagers cuz we share stickers and things like that with each other. Melanie Knights (36:58): And it’s just so fun. So this was an idea that I’d had at the end of last year, really feeling that need to connect with people offline as well as online. I love connection. It’s a whole value community really important, but I also don’t wanna be on Instagram as much as I have been previously. And I’m just not really in the mood to write tons of content for a platform that doesn’t really work with me in mind. And so I put out Instagram funny onto stories and was like, Hey ifob is to create this like pen paling community for small business owners, would you all be interested? And some people weren’t, I don’t need that kind of energy, but majority of people were like, hell yes, that sounds amazing. And here we are so very quickly, because again, I absolutely loved the idea and I was so excited by it, small BI SNA, mouth formed. Melanie Knights (37:57): And it came together really easily and that’s always the best kind of thing I can do in my business. So we are currently doors open. We’re gonna start writing in February, so I know you’re gonna really officially close the doors, but the first pen paling group, we will start writing on the 2nd of February because it is oh 2 0 2 22. And that just feels really good. So we’re gonna start pen paling from that date forward. So if you want to find out more head over to the show notes, click the link, you can find out more about small BI snail mail. As I said, this is a pen paling community for small business owners. So we are going to be essentially like networking offline. And if you are thinking Melanie, I do not even know what the I would write. I’m like me too sames. Melanie Knights (38:48): I’m gonna be sharing with you in our community. I’m gonna be sharing with you tutorials and is I’m gonna be sharing what I do because there are two tiers. So it is a paid community and there are two tiers. The first tier gives you access to the community, all the tutorials, and you’ll be assigned a pen pal every single month so that you can then have that person’s contact details on, you will write to them the second tier or also means that you will get a pen pal letter from me every single month. And in that penal letter, I will be adding in some like stationary bits and pieces. I’m not gonna tell you what it is. It’ll be a surprise each month because that’s the best, but that’s what you’ll get. If you do the second tip. So there’s two tier available. Melanie Knights (39:32): And within this community, as I said, there’s going to be, there is an online community in MIT networks. We also have like a dashboard where you can go in and you can see the tutorials. I’m gonna be slowly but surely adding information there. This is gonna be a really chill place. There is no expectation for you to be in this community. Every second. Obviously the expectation is that you will write your penal letter in that month. But you do not have to be kind of posting and sharing all the time in the community. That is not what it’s about. The idea is that we have this place to connect and we have this place to be creative. So as we kind of continue to grow, there are gonna be themes for the month. So I might give like a color theme or maybe there’s a seasonal theme and I’m gonna be showing you how to get creative with things that you actually just have around your house, like household items. Melanie Knights (40:19): You don’t have to go out and buy a ton of new stationary. I’m a hypocrite for just saying that, but you don’t have to go out and buy a ton of new stationary. You absolutely can do this with things around the house. And I’m gonna be showing you all of that. As we kind of go through this together, it is a monthly paid membership. You can counsel any time as long as you match, as long as you write to your penal that month, you can of course test it out and cancel. That’s absolutely fine. Yeah, as I said, super chill community, but I am so freaking excited to continue having these offline connections as well. So if you want more information head over to the show notes, you can find out more there. And if you’d like to join us, we would absolutely love that. Melanie Knights (41:02): You can join us through that link as well. And as I said, we start pen paling in February. If you have more information, if you want more or not, if you have more information, if you want more information, feel free to send me an email or send me a message on Instagram, head over to entrepreneurial, under call Outlaws and send me a message. I will get back to you as soon as possible with your questions answered. So thank you so much for joining me for this week’s episode. As I said next week, we will be showing up with a brand new theme. I’m gonna be talking all about the lunar cycle and focusing specifically on the new moon, cuz we have a new moon in aquas and I wanna thank you and speak to you next week until next time Outlaws.