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In my work with designers, I’ve seen all sorts of tangled beliefs when it comes to money.
Designers who are so worried about the “tax man” that they stop themselves from earning more.
Designers who are so afraid to ask for the client’s budget—everybody has a number—that they cheat themselves out of appropriate fees.
Designers who know they need help, that getting help will bring results but who are afraid to commit to the investment in getting help for themselves and their business because it’s expensive. So they end up spending infinitely more time and even more money, ultimately earning less.
In studies of people isolated in submarines, space stations or polar bunkers in Antarctica, researchers have found there appears to be a point where the frustration of being cooped up inside suddenly gets harder to bear.
You may remember the first phase which started with panic, then buying and confusion. Then we rolled quickly into the second phase, a kind of “honeymoon period”, when it felt fun and different to stay at home.
But now depending on what day you’re on, and how you’ve been navigating all of this, many are entering the third phase. In psychological studies of extreme confinement and isolation, this phase is known as the ‘third-quarter phenomenon’. The phenomenon was first described in the early 1980s and came from a body of research around how long humans could survive in space.
I always find it curious when designers get excited about how little they spend on marketing, or the ones who boast that they spend nothing at all.
Usually these are the same designers who are confused when potential clients want to a spend a little on their design fees. If you listened to my recent podcast episode on money, you get that’s because energetically they’re a perfect match.
In FB groups and in discussions, I’m seeing some business owners knock their businesses down to the studs. They’re closing up shop, laying off staff, stopping their marketing, and essentially throwing in the towel based on the predictions of news sources, other people’s advice and government “leaders” who change their position on a minute-by-minute basis. Then they wonder why they feel panicked.
Lately I’ve been finding the cultural obsession with “getting things on the cheap” draining.
Whether it’s some tchotchke, an experience, or more often the services of another creative person, for some, the only way to win, or spark joy, is to reduce the value of.
I too was schooled early in the art of bargain hunting and have often felt the rush of adrenalin when my favorite stores have a sale. But I’d be lying if I said that all of the things I came home with were ones that I loved.
I was flying back from an event my coach hosted in Arizona when I noticed. Among the people sitting in the nine, first-class seats, I was the only woman.
It’s not the first time I’ve noticed the disparity between men and women in the front half of the plane but today it was particularly meaningful. I had just seen Cindy Eckert speak about founding a pharmaceutical company, selling that company for one billion dollars and then suing the buyer to get it back when they failed to bring the product she fought so hard to create to market, Addyi.
You know the type. Those people who stomp on the seed of the vision rooted in your heart, or who water it with a “well-meaning” dose of reality.
Here’s the thing, realistic is really only someone else’s take on their experience. What they have decided emotionally, intellectually, and usually not spiritually, has nothing to do with you. That is unless you accept their reality as your own.
That vision you see in your head, the one you keep holding off while you stubbornly insist that you’re the only one who can handle it, is where your life and business get really good.
But that vision is asking you to let go of what isn’t working now, the struggle. That vision is asking you to grow (and trust me when I say you’re not interested in the opposite) and growth requires that you master a skill you’re not comfortable with: receiving.
Happy International Women’s Day!
On this day that celebrates the working woman, I’d like to offer some blunt advice.
Don’t let people pick your brain.
Don’t barter in unequal measure.
Don’t work for free.
If you’ve been on Facebook the last couple of days you’ve probably seen the post gone viral about yanny and laurel. I’m not going to go into the logistics of how all of this went viral, you can read that story here. However, what you need to know for the purposes of branding your interior design firm, is that scientists have an explanation for why each of us hears something different. The audio clip is known as an “ambiguous figure”. Like Rubin’s Vase, it’s an optical illusion.
I'm an Author, Award-winning Producer and Visibility Ideator with an Uncommon Take on Doing Business.
I founded MeByDesign, an idea boutique for the home industry in 2011 and have worked with creative entrepreneurs in the United States, Europe and Canada.
My incredible clients have been featured in publications like Architectural Digest, New York Times, Elle Decor, House & Garden (UK), and on network and cable television. Several have also negotiated television development and product licensing deals.
You may have read my first book, Branding + Interior Design which has taught thousands of designers how to bridge the gap between designer and design leader.
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The difference between unknowns, design leaders and legends is a factor of visibility. But being visible is about more than being seen, one of its underused definitions is available.