Episode 157

A Year in Review

January 2, 2018

It’s a new year of Being Boss! In this business bestie conversation, we’re looking back at the highlights and challenges of 2017, looking forward to more intentionally working seasonally in 2018, and getting ready to prep our businesses for the New Year by taking a CEO Day.

This Episode Brought to You By:
"Really think about your very first step because you will realize that you have come such a long way."
- Kathleen Shannon

Discussed in this Episode

  • Taking a look back at the past year: biggest highlights and biggest challenges
  • Our decision to close the Being Boss Facebook group
  • Words of the year
  • Working with the seasons and cycles
  • CEO Day

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In this episode, the Taking Action Tarot Spread worksheet was mentioned. Download your copy here!


More from Kathleen

Braid Creative

More from Emily

Almanac Supply Co.


Kathleen Shannon 0:02
Hello, and welcome to being boss,

Emily Thompson 0:04
a podcast for creative entrepreneurs. I'm Emily Thompson.

Kathleen Shannon 0:08
And I'm Kathleen Shannon.

Emily Thompson 0:14
And this episode is just Kathleen and me looking back at 2017 the highlights and challenges both personally and professionally. And as always, you can find all the tools, books and links we referenced on the show notes at WWW dot bien vos club.

Kathleen Shannon 0:31
Alright bosses, I hope the IRS isn't listening to this because I have a confession to make. I am really good at tracking my expenses, but I'm not the best at saving my receipts. I know it's 2017 and we still need printed receipts. But get this fresh books cloud accounting has made it easy, you can simply photograph your receipts with your phone, attach them to your expense, and be 100% legit. freshbooks has a lot of features for tracking your expenses, including tax friendly categories multicurrency expenses and easy to read categorization. Try fresh books cloud accounting for free by going to freshbooks comm slash being boss and enter being bots in the How did you hear about us section? what's what's up? Emily? It's been a hot minute since we've recorded just the two of us. Right? It's

Emily Thompson 1:25
been a busy year, which I guess is what we're here talking about. But I do you feel like we haven't had moments between just the two of us to have those usual conversations and share them. So I'm excited to see what crazy shit comes out of today.

Kathleen Shannon 1:42
I know it's funny to think that we started this podcast, what, four years ago now? Or is it?

Emily Thompson 1:48
Yes, we are calling it year number four with this episode.

Kathleen Shannon 1:52
Okay. So the goal was that we were going to start publishing our business best the conversations, and bringing them to the world to hear and the podcast has grown so much beyond that. And we're so lucky that we get to talk to so many experts in the industry in lots of different industries, and some brilliant thought leaders. But it's also cool whenever we get to chat, just the two of us. I agree. But I wanted to like focus our conversation around it's the beginning of the year. And so like I want to take a look back and look at where we're at and then look forward and really just have one of those like good old fashioned business bestie conversations.

Emily Thompson 2:36
Yeah, so let's get started. I think whenever I think about, like having these sort of recap sessions with people, there's always a couple of things that that come up. And those being what we loved most about the past year, what we found the most challenging. I think we should also talk about intentions like our word of the year, why not and see how those have played out and maybe dive into what we have coming in 2018 because I feel like my sleeves are getting full of things. Right? So many things that my sleeves.

Kathleen Shannon 3:10
Okay, so thinking about 2017? You know, let's, let's look at what went really well. Like what were some of your favorite moments, those highlights that really stand out to you. Over the past year.

Emily Thompson 3:24
Sure. Looking back, I know, I got a ton of shit done, for sure. But I also feel like I had more time off this year than ever before. Like, I think back to the summer. I feel like I worked mostly four day weeks, which were pretty fantastic. I think I took several Friday's off for either travel or hiking or whatever. I also took several vacations. So I feel like it's like I got a lot of work done. But my work time was more impactful so that it allowed me to have a little more breathing time and time in my life. So that is that kind of colors very beautifully my year as a whole. But I think specifically, one of the big ones, especially personally, was I paid off my student loans this year, which is huge for me and hopefully most of hopefully not most of you, but I imagine most of you listening, probably sitting under some student loan debt and for me to have not only finally paid them off, but paid them off three years, faster than expected or than planned. And having done them or having paid them off with my own business, like my own ability to make revenue on my own. Not someone else paying my paychecks, was kind of huge and felt really amazing. But I will also tell you which may be a buzzkill for most of you having them paid off doesn't feel that different.

Kathleen Shannon 4:51
Really, I mean, do you feel like you have more money now or?

Emily Thompson 4:56
No no, because I'm because the money is now Going to our IRA accounts or our health savings account, or whatever it may be so

Kathleen Shannon 5:06
well, you know what? Being boss doesn't feel glamorous, doesn't feel amazing, right? So tributing to your retirement account, and it feels real boring. But I guarantee in 40 years, you're going to be feeling real boss about it.

Emily Thompson 5:20
Right? I know, I know. So that has been sort of a funny thing is I really expected it to feel amazing Finally, having paid them off. But it doesn't feel any different. But they're gone, which is super exciting. So now I can think about what I want to do with my credit now, do I want to buy another house or buy some land or whatever it may be. So I do have some, some additional extra opportunities, and also just the super boss feeling of knowing that I have paid off a large debt with my own like skills and ingenuity in a way that I know most of you are probably like that your hopes and dreams, it's totally possible because I did it. High five

Kathleen Shannon 6:01
thing. I have a similar thing where I sold one of my rental properties, and it had bad karma, which is the only reason why I sold it. I call it my karma curse house. Anyway, I sold it. And so I had a little bit of a chunk of money from this cell, and I paid down my current house that I'm living in, so I no longer have to pay PMI, which is private mortgage insurance. Basically, I'm paying insurance on the mortgage company to not default on my house, which makes no sense. Anyway, one of those things that's really super boring, but really boss.

Emily Thompson 6:39
That is really amazing. David and I were literally talking about that, like two weeks ago. And it's a real conversation that bosses have that PMI sucks and what do you have to do to not pay it anymore?

Kathleen Shannon 6:52
Right, you have to pay down your house to 25% of the loan. You have to get it reappraised anyway, it's this is a boring conversation that our bosses do not want to listen to you. But just so you all know, sometimes business bestie conversations involve some really boring money topics.

Emily Thompson 7:12
Or super interesting depending on where you where you may be. So I'm glad you sold your your carmakers house, I know that that has been a struggle for you for a while. So congratulations.

Kathleen Shannon 7:24
My other really personal highlight whenever it comes down to my last year is really finally getting in the groove with being a mom. Like it took me about four years to get the hang of it. But I feel like I'm finally at that place in the past year where I'm enjoying every moment. And I'm not taking the typical, you know, three year old meltdowns personal, I trust myself that I'm strong enough to get through my child's meltdown and that I'm stronger than he is and that I'm going to set the example of what it means to keep my cool in the situation. Professionally have I kept my cool in every situation? Probably not. I haven't done a bad job, then business can be so emotional. This has been kind of like an emotional year for me as well. We're still talking about highlights, and we'll move on to challenges in a hot minute. But first, I want to hear about your highlight professionally, like what was the most exciting part of 2017 or the part that felt like an accomplishment or just where you really wanted to high five yourself or, you know those moments whenever you get to like, have a 30,000 foot view of like, I'm doing it? Did you have any of those?

Emily Thompson 8:38
Yeah, I had a couple of those this year. I mean, writing the book was such a surreal process. And I feel like so much of that has been those little moments. And for us that was really like the pinnacle of that during the book creation process was the was the book photoshoot that we did, we went to New Orleans, we had a photographer for three, two days, three days I can't remember I've we hung out with Sarah the entire time. But we had a couple days of photo shoots and like multiple wardrobe changes. And and like just laying by the pool and having all these things like happening around us without us having do it. The book photoshoot was a really big one for me. But I also think about the night of the parade in New Orleans for the big boss vacation. I remember looking around the room either before or after the parade or both honestly, and seeing all of these bosses decked out and masks and wigs and sequins and thinking and thinking that the work that we've done has culminated in this joy for all of these people and for all these people to have shown up so decked out and ready to go and so like high vibing and excited and all of these things like that was probably the moment that I think of like most clearly of like looking around and having this almost like this. I don't know what like out of body experience, almost of seeing what we done, not even from my eyes, but like 30 foot view of like seeing what was happening. And when we got 30,000 foot view, 30 foot, that does actually sound adequate, we'll keep that one I'm ever seeing what was happening and knowing that we had put this thing in motion. That was a moment of amazement, for sure, those bosses brought it.

Kathleen Shannon 10:27
So the book has been a huge part of our 2017. And it's still not even out, but it is available for pre orders. So if you guys are curious, taking a sneak peek at the book, just go to being boss club slash book, and we give you all the details there.

Emily Thompson 10:48
Right, so what about you professionally? I mean, you've had lots of things going on.

Kathleen Shannon 10:53
Yeah. So you know, this past year, professionally. I think that that moment in New Orleans, that parade was so cool. But what I really liked about it was just looking back at it and thinking, we're all brought together because you and I decided to hit record on a podcast, you know, like really contrasting, the very first step against what it's turned into has been so cool. So I would encourage any of our listeners to really think about your very first step, because you will realize that you have come a really long way and that there's so much to celebrate. And if you're just about to take your first step, just know that it can turn into something that is beyond your wildest dreams. And that's what that moment was for me. But I also thought what was really cool about the New Orleans parade, was really the relationship that we have with fresh books. Cloud accounting, goes so far above and beyond just a typical sponsor, podcast relationship. And I was really proud of that. I mean, they helped us make that parade happen. And seeing Tim from freshbooks have such a good time. Like that made me really incredibly proud of what we've created together with them and with their support. So I was really proud of that, that was really, truly a highlight. So the other thing that's really exciting that stands out for me is braid, creative. Got an office space. And it's so amazing, we got a third partner, we are growing and starting to expand in ways that feels like we're doing it on our terms. So really expanding what we've created into an agency has been really scary for us because we grew up in an agency model. And anytime we thought about going there, it felt like going back, right but taking all the principles and philosophies that you and I have learned along the way, with recording being boss that we can be bosses and live life and work on our own terms, I can apply that to old models and make them my own. And so we've been really intentional as we grow our business to do it on our terms. And that really culminates and manifests and is so clearly apparent in our office space, because you have this idea of what an agency looks like. And I'm putting agency in like, quote, unquote, but ours is all you know, white, and has a ton of plants in it. Like we're crazy plant ladies. We have a bunch of fiber art and textiles and natural wood and concrete. And it's just a beautiful Oh, like fo for throws all over the place and fiber art. And so it's just real, super earthy, it feels so good to be in that space. And it feels good that we don't have to be in that space, eight hours a day like that. We're just getting to define these rules. So we're partially working from home partially working from our space, there's still so much flexibility and freedom in our schedules. And I'm just really super proud of that.

Emily Thompson 14:08
I love it. And I have found it or I've been super inspired by your ability to grow and yet keep that authentic. That authentic sense of you guys, you're gonna work however you want do and having a space doesn't define your work in any different way than working in Tara's writing shed or whatever it may be. So I love that you guys are growing in the ways that you are and Holly's fantastic. And I know you guys are gonna end up doing really awesome things. I'm excited for you.

Kathleen Shannon 14:43
Well, thank you. You'll have to you need to come to Oakland. We'll see I will

Emily Thompson 14:47
you probably won't be able to drag me out with police taking a couple of plants and pieces of fire brought with me. I might steal all of your things.

Kathleen Shannon 14:57
Okay, so for you bosses listening from home For your space or wherever you're at in your car, we really want you all to be thinking about your personal and professional highlights in 2017. It is worth noting and celebrating to do that, but it wasn't all puppies and rainbows and high fives and Pat's on our backs. There were some serious challenges. Right? I

Emily Thompson 15:23
think I've cried more this year than I have any year since I was born. Possibly. legit. Wow. Right. Like how you're just like shaking your head at me? Because you know what I mean? I just,

Kathleen Shannon 15:37
I mean, yeah, but you know what's funny about it? Well, I've had a few meltdowns, but I feel like I haven't cried as much. Good. Good, good. Again, this is coming off of year one and two post partum. Right. Right. And finally feeling good in that. So I've cried a lot less in the past year that I have. But there have been some serious, like, the tears that I have shed have been real intense. So let's get into some of that weight. What would you say some of your biggest challenges were and what did you learn from that challenge? Because we know that we don't come out of what kind of tears us down weaker, but we come out of it a little bit stronger. So

Emily Thompson 16:19
for sure, I almost feel like I've been going through like, not like a quarterlife crisis because that happens when you're 25 and not a midlife crisis, because that happens when you're 50 to 60. So whatever comes in between I'm having that crisis. No, I'm not I'm fine. But, um, but I have had a lot of points of, of adjusting this year, which we'll get into our word of the year in a minute, but mine was strengthened my god has mine been tested every step of the way. And just in lots of ways were. So I've one of my biggest challenges this year is figuring out what I'm doing with indie typography, with my business and how it is that I want to deal with it. Do I want to do I want to commit myself to building websites? But I've said it here before? I think I don't want to do websites anymore? Is it refocusing indie? Is it passing indie off to someone else? Who can? Who can? Who can grow it and focus on it in the way that it needs it? So that has been a huge one, like, what do I do with my business baby basically, has been a huge challenge for me. And

Kathleen Shannon 17:26
I have a question for you this, because so I kind of reengaged with braid, because I kind of came to a little bit of a I need to make a decision. And being business besties as we are, you know, I'm curious like how much we influence each other whenever it comes to the decisions we make. And obviously I have business partners over on that side. And you have, you know, David being your business partner at NB, but it's still a little bit different where like, you still have a lot of autonomy over what really happens. But I'm curious to hear if any sort of any sort of my decision making whenever it came to re engaging with braid like did that affect you at all? At any point? Or did you not even think about it? Which is cool, too. I'm not trying to

Emily Thompson 18:11
short Kathleen? I don't think it really did affect it a little or at all? If it did it? If it did it made me consider going back more maybe. But even then, yes, was not the answer or going right. And doing it was not the air doing websites in terms of nd was not the answer, because I'm really, really done with websites? I'm so I don't think so not enough to like actually change anything for sure. And we did have a point. So as we were writing the book that was that was something that came up for us is you know, whenever we're done writing the book, or this book, what are we going to do? Like? Are we going to still split our time between our two businesses are we're going to go 100% being boss, what are we going to do you decided to go back to braid, or not go back because you have been at braid. But you wanted to keep the arrangement between you and braid and being boss. But I wanted to go much more being boss. And so Indy has been in what I've been calling hibernation mode. For a little while where we still have our we still have our old clients. We're still doing maintenance and updates and all of those things. But we haven't taken a new client now in almost two years, which is crazy. And it like into what end and am I keeping it open. So that's been a big challenge. And I have some things in the works and some ideas and things like that. So I'm not just sitting on it. But that has been a huge challenge for me this year is figuring out what I'm doing with India biography, but it hasn't been just about what I'm doing with the business. It's also been a huge question of what am I doing with my life? Right. So I've I've really had this like, quarter to live mid life crisis, where I'm trying to decide what I want to do do I want to be like, full time Boston, podcasting and online business and coaching and all of these things, or do I want to cook all day? And like, hang out with my kid? Or do I want to do something else? Because I have had a hardcore edge for brick and mortar for a really long time. And I don't think it's quite time for me to do that yet. But there have just been lots of questions around how do I make my money? How do I express myself creatively? And what am I adding? Or how am I adding value to the world. So just small questions like that, basically, so all of that has been super challenging for me, but then also the book, like birthing this book into the world has been a super huge challenge. And especially and

Kathleen Shannon 20:47
it's still not even still, I still have a ways to go. I know.

Emily Thompson 20:52
And it's, it's still not even here yet. But that one that has been really challenging for me, as well, as someone who hugely values freedom and self reliance and confidence, I feel like the book process has tested all of my core values in a very real way that has had me questioning everything and, and part of that decision has been with doing traditional publishing, and just like playing by someone else's rules, which is all good and fine, but has been super challenging for me, I think that the end process or the end product will be fantastic. The process has been fun and engaging. But it has been super challenging. But it also has affected how I look at how I want to grow my own business or my own professional life, and that I like the idea of staying small, like whenever businesses start getting too big, and there's too much red tape, and too many like opinions that go into decision making all of those things, I think that's where things get a little convoluted and messy. And I like the idea of staying small and nimble and responsive in a way that allows me to always hold my values at the top of what I do instead of trying to weave them around with anyone else.

Kathleen Shannon 22:10
I know I think that you're kind of one of those lone wolf types totally. You know, what were like you, I think, thrive whenever you don't feel caged. And I'm definitely like a wolf pack, wolf. Yeah, and part of that's because I need people like you and my sister. And you know, my husband in a lot of ways to like, we're in it together, you know what I mean? And so traditional publishing and like working in the book, I can see so many instances where it's like, you know, like the wolf pack, like a couple of them are like tumbling around in circles together. But I think that it's been real interesting. And coming from the agency world, I think maybe gives me a little bit different of a perspective, like having come from an organization that was still small, but worked with big organizations, I think gives me a little bit of perspective into this. But also, whenever I feel pushed, I definitely think that there's this maturity that I always tend to grow and mature out of those moments. And I think that collaborating with a publisher has been so amazing in so many ways, it's definitely tested, for sure our patients, because that's the thing, that's the main thing is that we get things done so fast. And we get them done in the way that we want it. And you know, collaborating with someone else means that we have to,

Emily Thompson 23:44
I mean, we have to compromise. And we're not used to doing that. But I think that and working on someone else's timeline has also been like, whenever we were talking about getting a book deal, and they were talking about spring 2018 were like, are we even still going to be relevant then? Like, why is this not going to be created five times faster than this, like, we could publish this book in like three months if you guys are ready. So like, the timeline thing has been really difficult. I know for both of us, because we do work so quickly. And we have the ability to turn things around. So swiftly. But working with like a mammoth of a company. It's a little slower,

Kathleen Shannon 24:18
but it's also so cool, being able to bring our expertise to the table there. And then their willingness to collaborate with us whenever it comes to, you know, being on the same page. Nothing makes me feel more boss and coming out of, you know, meeting with the press team on the publisher side, and then being like, Wow, I can't believe that I don't have to explain to you what it means to like saturate the market with your message or what like launch campaign is and so that's really fun to be able to nerd out with them on some things. But for sure, it's just been a challenge. Like anything that's really rewarding can be a challenge. And for me, the biggest lesson coming out of it, or what I feel coming out of it is just a new sense of maturity and skills and being able to do it. Yeah, I think that we've grown so much through the process.

Emily Thompson 25:05
Oh, for sure. I mean, yes, absolutely. I if I had known a year ago, where I would be now and not even like having things done, but like, emotionally and professionally, I mean, I say I've been crying a lot. But even then, maybe that's a maturing on my part where I just like, actually need to release those emotions occasionally. But there's been absolutely been some hardcore maturing that's happened. And it's been a fun, interesting process and challenge that's gotten us here. What about you, Kathleen,

Kathleen Shannon 25:41
I still kind of want to do it again. I know. It's literally like having a baby where you're like you forget the pain of labor and delivery. Right, right.

Emily Thompson 25:49
And I imagine we will, I can't imagine a scenario when Kathleen and I do not write another book. For sure.

Kathleen Shannon 26:00
Yeah, so you know, as as much as we had going on this past year, and as glamorous as it can all look on Instagram. I feel like it doesn't come without the flip side of the coin. Being that there's a lot of hard things that people don't see. And this is something I've been thinking about a lot this past year is that, you know, kind of the idea of like Mo Money Mo Problems. Yeah, and it's not that we have more money, I mean, we're doing good, but it's more of like, as we grow and expand, it feels more of like an energetic expansion. And then also literal growth in our brand. And the opportunities, just comes a lot more opportunities for having to make really hard decisions and having really hard conversations. And I've had more hard conversations with you, with my sister, um, you know, just in business, trying to figure it all out. And it's not always easy. Like, that's been really hard. And so specifically, some of the things that have been really challenging, is probably balancing, being boss and braid creative. Whenever you decided to go more all in on being Boss, I remember one of the hard conversations that we had was, and I decided to go more into braid, or re engage with braid, even if just energetically, the conversation was okay, but can you match my time, because there are operating agreements or conflicts of time, there are, you know, noncompetes happening from both sides. And so it gets really, really tricky on both sides. And there are many times where I felt stuck between a rock and a hard place with braid and being boss and how I'm one person. And so there was this idea of like, can you match my time? And I was like, well, let's see. So I feel like I've kind of been in both places, 100%. And I don't know how that's gonna shift into this next year, I do feel like we set up systems and processes. And I did go really hard all year long. So that's been challenging. But fortunately, things have been really easy on the family front, like I feel real solid there. So I think that things have been really hard at braid, being boss and my family and not even hard, but just so many changes, and so much growth, I would have been a mess. Okay, and then the other really difficult thing that just really stood out to me, and it weighed on me a lot was the decision to close the Facebook group. And now

Emily Thompson 28:36
that was like, I, I hope people understand or at least I hope that people who maybe saw it as a flippant decision or saw it as us taking something valuable away from them. I hope you understand how many conversations we have had about that Facebook group, which really, which really ended up lending to this idea that we are spending too much of our energy, just trying to figure out what to do with it, let alone actually like all the energy that went into keeping it alive and running. And with integrity. And like all of these things were that were really important to us. That Facebook group took up more of our time this year, I think that it should have but done and gone.

Kathleen Shannon 29:19
Well, part of that is that it really did test my values whenever it comes to things even politically, for example, right? Like, you know, it wasn't the it wasn't the black and white lines that were hard to enforce. It was all the gray areas. Like do I kick someone out of the group for making a micro aggression, you know, like racist statement towards someone else? Or do I give them a warning? And why am I the person having to police this like, everyone in here as grown adults? Can't everyone be nice, I'm a grown adult and I own this group. I can just kick out whoever I want to but like these are the things, you guys, I got completely neurotic. And that was just a small sampling of what it looked like to be in my head one day, one, one half hour, but then even the fact that I would spend a half hour deciding whether or not to kick someone out of a Facebook group, right, that's I can get so much done in half an hour. Anyway, so a big part of it was just really looking at what our values are as a company for being boss, what our values are for our community, and really deciding what is community and what is noise distraction. Yeah, yeah, and noise. And more than anything, like if I ever have frosty feelings, it's around feeling like I'm just being noisy, and not saying something that's meaningful or impactful. And those are our goals are being bought. And so I think that together, though, and what I learned through that is that, the more I communicate with you and with our team, like what's actually happening and what I'm actually feeling, the more solid I felt in my intentions and values, and the more I could just get quiet. And kind of like this, you said earlier, like this idea of staying small. That idea kept coming back to me throughout this year to like, I feel like we're growing. And I want to make sure that I'm not staying small because I'm scared, and that it's really out of my value to stay nimble. And to also, I mean, to just prioritize what's really most important.

Emily Thompson 31:36
Yeah, for sure, for sure. And I that Facebook group was the biggest challenge, and not even like figuring out how and when to close it. But so much of it was how do we keep it and make it valuable? Like we had that conversation almost as often as we did about all the reasons why we shouldn't have it as part of our as part of our business model, or as part of our brand, or as part of our like, how we help our community, as just as many conversations for keeping it as not keeping and ultimately it was getting rid of it. And they haven't even told you this yet. I went on to my Facebook yesterday, which I never do, guys, I do not get on Facebook ever. But I ended up finding this place where you have all those messages from people who aren't your friends. Like I found that space, hundreds of messages from being like group members who had either been kicked out for I don't know why I don't go in that group or had their had their posts reported as spam. And I was If I had known all of those were landing in my inbox, we would have closed the group months ago, for sure. I had no idea. I had no idea and like 100 not all of them were kind either, like by No, no. So it was just for me it was it was a high five.

Kathleen Shannon 32:54
I think, see, I should have told you that about the like unread request. Yeah, so

Emily Thompson 32:59
I had no idea they were there. No idea. And it was mind blowing and just confirmation that that that is not to how we want to share and grow our brand, but it's in. It's with people who have quite a bit more integrity. I think that a lot of those messages I was reading.

Kathleen Shannon 33:21
And you know, I had kind of like a come to Jesus moment with this where I was like, Okay, this is part of maturing as a leader and as a leader, I'm going to have to make hard decisions for my community. Yeah. And I'm, I don't want this. I have like, I have to make hard decisions for my kid. And my community is not my child. But my child is not always happy whenever I cut him off from eating sugar for dinner, right. And so I think that a lot of our community was like, mostly disappointed or sad, or they didn't understand why we were making the decision we we made and, but it was kind of one of those things where I was like, Okay, I'm willing to take some flak, because in the long run, I know that this is going to be better for you too. Yes. And so that was definitely like a maturity moment. Like, in hindsight, my word for 2017 should be maturing, because I feel like I grew up a lot this year.

Emily Thompson 34:12
I love it. Right. And that I think, was one of the biggest deciding factors in closing the Facebook group was that whenever we think of where we want to nurture relationships with bosses, like amongst themselves, or them with us, and vice versa, it's not on Facebook, it's not in the place where they're going to go in and see their uncle bitching about something stupid and like bringing their vibes down. And it's, it's not that noisy place. It's somewhere else. It's somewhere more intimate. It's somewhere where you're not going to Facebook to get away from the work that you need to do like you're supposed to be getting back to work right now. So just the platform wasn't right. The the way it had grown, wasn't correct for what we want to do accomplish all these things like there were so many really amazing mature conversations that went down that resulted in that. And I'm glad that we can go into 2018. With that energetic space reallocated for something other than a Facebook group.

Kathleen Shannon 35:13
Oh, for sure. Because you know, after closing it, I was like community never again, I can't, within probably a week of closing it, I can already feel space opening for meaningful connection, whatever that looks like next. And truly starting with a phone call with another creative. I had a chat with Jessica Merman from one part podcast, and we've had her on our podcast before, and then move the needle so much more. Like it was so energizing and inspiring. Just have that one on one conversation. And I think that a lot of people are trying to get that feeling on Facebook whenever they really just need to get on the phone with a friend. Yeah, yeah, yeah, for sure. And so I feel like that's a theme really going into 2018 is like, how can all of us start going within for our answers and stop looking for external validation or confirmation or formulas or noise? And how can we all stop contributing to that noise? And really just start tuning into what works best for us? What is it that we want to be doing with our days? Yeah, so going into 2018? About our word for the year,

Emily Thompson 36:29
right? Last year, or this year? 2017? Or 2018? Oh, because I don't have my like, as of recording this. We're not ready to have that conversation. We can do that. And like a minisode, or something coming up Really?

Kathleen Shannon 36:45
Good call. Yeah, I'm not right. I guess I'm not ready for it either. But like, whenever I think about themes coming into 2018, I think definitely the idea of like, I want to explore this year, the idea of staying small without necessarily contracting, right, or maybe contracting without staying small, or like just some sort of, I'm gonna play around with this one. I like all my ideas, tag me on Instagram. I like it. Okay, so then let's talk about our word from 2017. So this past year, every year, we start off our year with a word of the year, and it helps us really establish themes and intentions and values that really drive what we want to cultivate or nurture in our lives, or even how we make decisions. So Emily, what was your word of the year for 2017,

Emily Thompson 37:39
my word of the year was strength. And I didn't see it as like push ups and arm curls, or anything like that, I saw it more of an idea of intentional balance, or bringing things into balance. And for me, the thing that came up most was a balance between like masculine and feminine energies are Yin and Yang, or however you want to look at it. This idea of being able to be assertive and powerful, but also be super receptive, and quiet to like, being able to go back and forth between the two. Because, for me personally, those things are I mean, I guess for everyone, they're relatively polar opposites. But for me, I feel how polar opposite they are within myself. And so I spend a lot of year thinking about masculine and feminine energies, both how I exert them, but also how they show up in my life and how they affect me from the outside in, which has been super interesting and how that balance relates to strength. Because I don't think that I don't think that if, for example, a man who sees himself as purely masculine is very strong at all. Like he's probably making small and so many ways. And I feel like someone who is purely feminine is also the exact same, like I think there's strength and finding balance between those two energies. So that's been something that I've been trying to focus on. And it's the, along the same lines, the, under the idea of like, understanding things and then like wielding power and like using the things you understand to, to assert yourself. And I think, again, that sort of that balance between feminine and masculine. So that's been my word of the year, and it's come up for me a ton. And also the idea of strength as I was telling you the other day, I feel like the entire year has been me standing here asserting myself and like holding my ground and my values in place, and in so many ways, just being beaten with sticks. This idea of like, I'm here and I'm showing up and I'm doing the thing, but everyone's got a bone to pick. Everyone's got an issue with something or everyone wants to change something or assert themselves in ways that are opposite of what I'm doing and not feel like that. Feels really dramatic. But it's also feel super true to what how my year has felt. I sort of wonder if it's been like one of those self fulfilling prophecies like I chose drink. So I've been fucking tested to see how it, how I could show up for it. And I think I've I think I've done fairly well, I've had a couple of dark moments. But I definitely feel like I'm coming out on the other side stronger for it for all the things and whether that's, for example, this summer, I spend a ton of time traveling, and me being home and comfortable. And in my safe space. Like, I'm a cancer, for example, like me, being home is super important to me, me spending two months traveling every single week, like I think I spent six weeks where I was not home on a weekend, which for some people, they're like, Oh, you know, I do that all the time. But for me, that's like detrimental in so many ways. So just little things like that have tested me in ways that maybe because I was focusing on strength, I focused on how much they were testing me. I'll hold that much more. But it's been a trying year. But again, I think I'm coming out on the other side. Pretty All right.

Kathleen Shannon 41:09
Yeah. And I think that you're probably one of the strongest people I know, like, ride or die. I'm in a ditch. I'm calling you. You can please do. Get all the people beating you with sticks off of you and can save my life.

Emily Thompson 41:25
What's gonna happen is in a minute, I'm gonna snatch one of those sticks off of somebody, and I'm going to go running after everyone.

Kathleen Shannon 41:34
No, I loved your word of the year. And I think that you know, because you and I have always held each other accountable to our intentions. I always am holding space for your intention. In my mind. It's almost like your intentions always kind of become my intentions to write is that codependent maybe a little bit? No, I

Emily Thompson 41:54
think actually, I think that's part of the the magic of sharing intentions. And it's something that I do, I've started doing with other people, because I've seen how much how much I get from sharing them with you that now David and I will do it, we'll share our intentions and sort of go back and forth. And then it right back at you like I have definitely held space for your intention and even thought like when we're together like how can I bring this intention up for Kathleen? Like, what can I do today? Even better? And so I think that that is I think that's a very early, I think it's a powerful part of the practice of intention setting and also sharing them with others because it's not just having them hold you accountable, but it's them holding space for you as well. Yeah. Okay, so

Kathleen Shannon 42:42
my intention for 2017 was the word magic. And part of this was really wanting to bring ritual and intention and like manifesting spirituality into the physical world. And so I do this in a lot of ways. Like, whenever I'm working out, I think about the spirituality of my body, for example, like how lucky we are to be souls in this world with bodies. And so for me, increasing my deadlift is a spiritual act. But I wanted to really tap into the magical side of things. And I know that magic is having its moment. But for me, it's been something that has always felt really true to me. And it's something that I've been really wanting to come back to more specifically this year through rituals, like for example, you know, we've talked about this with, as he Spencer about, you know, setting intentions with the moon. And I know that she's really into the lunar abundance, and that's something that we've been practicing for a long time, you know, or we'll talk to Bridget from Biddy Tarot about Tarot, and like really integrating that into our spiritual practices,

Emily Thompson 43:54
or we'll go on bosses and everyone will go crystal shopping together.

Kathleen Shannon 43:59
Right. And we like included a tarot spread in our being boss, New Orleans Xen that we had created. So basically, our itinerary had a tarot spread attached. And so I've really embraced the Whoo, but I was wanting to get real disciplined with it, like really making it an intention. And I know that that can even feel like it squeezes the magic out of it, but I don't think it does. I think that it's a practice just like anything else is a practice, right. And so I was really wanting to cultivate and nurture magic in my life, specifically around those monthly rituals, but also around really just acknowledging and recognizing synchronicities, and those you know, magical moments. And I have to tell you, I feel like I totally failed. I started the year really strong and was doing daily Card polls and really, you know, writing down my intentions at the New Moon and burning it and really setting myself up for success. And then at some point, I think like anyone on a spiritual journey has I started just being like, what is this? Like? Is this even real? And kind of having that self doubt, but then also getting real caught up in the daily grind and just be like, I don't want time. I don't have time to see synchronicity. And the thing is, is that I know this, and you know, this, and all you listeners know, this, like, it really is what we focus on grows. And that's what shows up for us. Right. And I was so focused on just like, the grind and the work and the hard decisions, that decision started feeling harder. And I felt like there wasn't a lot of space for the things that I really wanted to nurture or see, which was a bunch of synchronicity. I just wanted like little things like seeing the same time on all the clocks all the time, for example, or, um, I don't know. And I know that I had some toward the end of the year, and toward the beginning of the year there. I just wanted like daily synchronicities. And that didn't necessarily show up for me. I don't know, that's a failure. A little disappointing. And then I also lost discipline around it. And discipline is probably one of those values that's really important to me, like I the things that I am disciplined about, I'm real disciplined about. And so I think I'm gonna try again this year.

Emily Thompson 46:29
Yeah, gonna repeat, or,

Kathleen Shannon 46:31
I mean, I don't know if I'm gonna do a repeat on my word. But definitely, you know, we've talked about this before, where our words layer on top of each other from year to year, and so intentions that really were meaningful for us, you know, from one year might start to carry over into the next. So I definitely think it's something I want to carry over. I want to see synchronicities. And I want for life to feel magical. And it really is like, that's that kind of maturity level and coming back to your intention of strength. I think that toward the end of the year, I found the maturity and strength to find magic, even whenever things don't always feel like puppies and rainbows.

Emily Thompson 47:12
I love that. I also hope maybe I'll say that you've unintentionally done quite a bit of magic this year. And you just won't know it for a minute.

Kathleen Shannon 47:24
Right? I mean, this is the other thing is that I believe I'm magic. And I believe that we all are magic. And we're all part of that, you know, spider web of magic. And it's funny because our, you know, right hand gal, Caitlin, she's sent us these spider web rings. And it was like, just know that you were busy like crafting this spiderweb. And that is going to come to fruition. And so that visual was really meaningful for me. And it made me feel like, I'm still accomplishing, like, I'm still in the middle of my spider web. And I'm still in the middle of that story. And so, I agree, I feel like I've created magic. And I feel like I'm still really amazing at manifesting stuff like chalkboard method. And you know, that's just kind of like a part of my daily life. But I was really wanting that next level like,

Emily Thompson 48:15
you still have almost like show up, right? You still have a moment left. Actually, you still have like a lifetime left. But because we're recording this a little bit early. You're not done yet with the year. So true. Can't wait to see what you do. I better not be anything in my direction. Just kidding can be only positive. Only good things only good things were in that boat together. Amen to that.

Kathleen Shannon 48:39
I love No. And that's something that like I really am kind of proud of this past year is that as hard as it was, I feel like I was really intentional about within all my partnerships, like with you, with my sister who I own braid, with and with my husband just really making sure that we remain on the same team, because it can be so easy to go after someone whenever you're in it together. Right? And so just really being sure like, Hey, we're on the same team, we have the same goals. What do we need to do?

Emily Thompson 49:09
Yeah, I totally agree with that. I do feel like that has actually been a total highlight of my year is like, I feel like I've done a super actually. And that was that was how great is this? That was one of my like plans for my year of strength was in building my support system and was building and strengthening my support system so that it wasn't just me doing all the things. But it was me and my like all of my life partners like all of you guys, so and that and not just you though that's been a totally huge part of it. And not just David though that's like equally that big of a part of it. But in other relationships that I have with friends like I feel like I've done a better job this year of staying connected to the people who were important to me than I ever have. And that's definitely been The highlight and has helped me through the stick beatings.

Kathleen Shannon 50:06
For sure. Alright, let's talk about 2018. How are we going to prepare for this next year?

Emily Thompson 50:13
First, I'm going to take a long winters nap. that's for damn sure.

Kathleen Shannon 50:20
So again, recording this early because we're taking the month of December off, Emily's going to sleep through,

Emily Thompson 50:26
I'm going to take a long winters nap. Um, right. So actually, this is this is something I've been I've been thinking about all year. And it actually started early December last year, this idea of, of not just living seasonally and the way that like Martha Stewart talks about living seasonally in your, you know, nutritionist tells you to eat seasonally, but like really, for real, living seasonally has been something I've been thinking about a lot. So for me, part of my hardcore plan for preparing for the new year. And you can do this like, even just after the new year for everyone who's listening to this is really spending my winter going super deep in like, just like all those little plants out there in the dirt that was little seeds that are like hanging out in the dark earth and just like waiting out, for the sun to come back out. Like that's what I'm spending my winter doing to prepare for the new year is I'm going to take a long winters nap. No jokes. So that's a big one for me.

Kathleen Shannon 51:31
I love that so much. You know, we do a thing called a CEO day for ourselves where we crunch numbers. And we look at the year ahead. And one of the tools that we have in that is really planning out 12 months ahead, and we look at it month by month, like what do we want to market? What are our revenue goals? You know, what do we need to prep forward in order to launch a thing the next month? When are we launching things, we even put our vacations in there. And I love the idea of even just busting that into, you know, winter, spring, summer and fall and thinking about it from a more holistic level. Right? Yeah, really think about? Like, how do the seasons affect our businesses? And not even just like this is usually a slow season or this is usually a busy season. But what does it mean for our productivity and our ability to rest and our ability to be inspired and motivated and that sometimes it's okay to be tired and Hibernate all winter long. Yeah, yeah,

Emily Thompson 52:32
for sure it will. And, you know, last year was the first year that we did or December off, and we both came out of it saying done, we will do this every December for the rest of forever, because it was amazing. And then this year, we're doing it. And I feel like we've already naturally begun that cycle of like, we understand that December is the month like the dead of winter, is the month when we need to pull back when like, we need to pull back. And we need to focus on our home and those people closest to us and not everyone around us or even our team or even like the work that we're doing. Like it's really coming back to the super personal. And so I love that we've already naturally done that, or we've already naturally begun the process without even realizing it. And I'm super interested and excited about working that into how it is that we work moving forward. Because one of the things that I have learned this year, since you know having that little inkling about this time last year, that this needed needed to be a more mindful part of our process, not just like how it is we work, but how it is we work as like human beings on the planet Earth, which is such a ridiculous sentence coming out of my mouth. I know that for sure. But it's true. And we are here and we are affected by the seasons. So I do plan on taking my CEO day and my 12 month marketing plan and really adjusting how we do business with or in terms of or keeping in mind how the seasons affect us. I know I'm much more productive. And spring and summer and then I am in the fall and winter and fall is when I need to start winding down. So how can we plan our business in a way that that matches our own energy? I mean, whenever Yeah, we

Kathleen Shannon 54:26
also do photo shoots only whenever I'm ovulating because I like so good at that right.

Emily Thompson 54:31
I like to do it just before my period because then I feel like I'm less bloated than usual. Oh my gosh, and then once period hits though I'm super bloated.

Kathleen Shannon 54:40
No, I was kind of saying that as a joke. But like, there is something to you especially as women like our own monthly cycles of creativity and productivity. And you know, like we're talking about seasonally but I think it even comes down to monthly and then weekly and daily.

Emily Thompson 54:57
We'll see here's the thing though, is like you Even though we're just talking about z, like even lunar abundance is something that I have a really hard time connecting with. And I think it's because like even a month long cycle is too short for me. For me, I found that starting with those year long cycles of really seeing those very large picture ebbs and flows, is where I need to start before I can start, like really moving down to those more minute cycles. And I absolutely believe that they are there, and I want to tap into them. But for me, I need to start wider before and like and really do it because society is not totally up with you taking December off, like, as we've been telling everyone, like our team and our contractors, and all the people in our lives that depend on us that we're taking December off, they're like, what, why are you doing this? And we're like, because like, we have to society is not, I don't know, totally up to par with actually living.

Kathleen Shannon 55:57
And that's so funny, because I feel like I'm kind of on that daily, like the we would

Emily Thompson 56:01
be the exact opposite of rent. Love it now,

Kathleen Shannon 56:05
but we just love the yearly rhythm. Because I think that as we get older, time moves faster. And looking at our, you know, years, year long chunks, I don't know, it does make a lot of sense, like, and it makes me feel more patient. Yeah, if that makes sense. Now, obviously find more balance. But you know, even daily people look at me, like I'm crazy. Whenever I say I'm not available to do anything until 11am. Because before that I'm doing all my self care stuff. So like working out, getting ready for the day, getting some writing done, right? That's not entirely socially acceptable, either, right? We just do

Emily Thompson 56:43
it, break all the rules and do what you want

Kathleen Shannon 56:46
losses on our term. So one of the things that we do is the CEO day. And as we were really looking at our goals from the last year, and all the things that we've tried to offer our community and create to like better serve the bosses that need our help that listen to the podcasts that are going to buy our book in April that, you know, are wanting more from us beyond the podcast, we've tried a bunch of things. And we're known for testing and changing and seeing what works and what doesn't. And so, we really went within and we were like what is the one thing that we do in our business that really moves the needle for us, like what is it that really allows us to get strategic to get organized to get motivated and inspired and make better decisions through the whole year to set goals, intentions, values, you know, really blending the emotional side of running your own business with like the profitable side or the money side of running your own business. And so we have actually packaged up what we do to make it do in our CEO day kit. Yeah, for

Emily Thompson 57:58
sure. When whenever we also think about what we do that's most impactful that we're already doing like the clubhouse has been a fun time, for sure. And that two day online retreat that we included in clubhouse was so impactful and so amazing for the people who are doing it. Being able to go through the content that really has been our CEO day, we decided like it was time to repackage up that content and even tweaking it in a way that it's even more true to how it is that we run our own CEO days like Kathleen and I do this every month we sit down, we look at our numbers, we look at our marketing plans, we make sure that as bosses, as bosses of our businesses and of our companies of of our lives, but businesses is the purpose of this, there were a couple of steps that we took every month or every quarter or definitely every year that helped us get these like CEO 30,000 foot view of our companies so that we can then dive in on the daily basis and do the thing. And so this has absolutely been the most impactful things that we've done for our businesses, and has helped us move forward. And CEO day kit is now something that any old boss can snag up for themselves.

Kathleen Shannon 59:17
But you know, the thing that I really appreciate about it is that it It forces you to look at what's working and what's not for yourself. And it really allows you to define your own rules. You know, I think that I get caught up in it like oh my gosh, do I need Facebook ads? Do I need to grow my list? What do I need to be doing? like things are changing all the time and whenever I can just really get honest with myself and put pen to paper with a little bit of guidance. I'm able to work in a way that feels so much more aligned and true to who I am. Will I have a $1 million launch? Yeah, probably not. But you know with that attitude you know what, like, I guess that's what I get caught up in you know, certainly feeling bad about myself as a boss, but like, whenever I can really get honest with myself about what I want to accomplish over the next year, it always points me in the right direction. And it really does come from within. And I think that that's something we've been preaching for so long and going within can sometimes be really scary. So I like that we've created the tools and guidance for in the space for going within so that you don't have to, I mean, you're gonna do it alone, because that's another thing. Like, we don't think that you need more people telling you what to do, or that you can figure it out. But you know, we're right there with you. Right. So but you're alone, but we're kind of with you.

Emily Thompson 1:00:40
But you're alone. No, we are with you. So about this time about the time this episode airs, Kathleen, and I will be having our first CEO day of 2018 and sitting down and planning everything that we need to do for the next year and making sure that it's aligned with us and our values and that we're setting our intentions, which is our favorite practice for growing our business and becoming more mature adults apparently. So if you want in on CEO day, if you want to have the exact steps and exercises that we're doing to plan our business then you can go check out CEO day kit for yourself. We've packaged it up a couple video lessons, couple worksheets. Easy peasy. Not anything too terribly fancy, but just enough for you to put pen to paper to plan your year.

Kathleen Shannon 1:01:35
And where can our listeners find that

Emily Thompson 1:01:37
you can find CEO day kit at courses dot being boss dot club. It's all there.

Kathleen Shannon 1:01:45
Alright, so we are out of time we need to wrap this up. But next time we have a business bestie chat that we publish to go live I want to talk about goal setting and what we do to set big goals and what that looks like.

Emily Thompson 1:02:00
Let's do it. Because New Year always brings out Emily's ability to make fucking ridiculous goals. So let's see what we got up our sleeves this year. Good to chat with you, Kathleen. I'm excited. Yeah. 2017 is done.

Kathleen Shannon 1:02:17
That was that was rough. But it was good. And for all of you listeners who have been along for the ride. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you for hanging with us through such a year of growth and expansion. And we hope to get to hang with you throughout this whole next year to

Emily Thompson 1:02:33
write another year of being boss. So excited. Thank you everyone. We have gotten so much amazing feedback over the years from listeners about how our podcast has helped them start to grow and uplevel their businesses. So we want to celebrate you. Here's the boss we're celebrating this week.

Unknown Speaker 1:02:55
Hi, my name is Marie Levy's haps did I am being boss. I teach parents how to maximize their time energy on what matters most in their lives using systems and I do it through my business create balance at WWW dot create balanced life.com and this week I'm targeting wrapping up my first corporate gig my first corporate workshop It was amazing super fun, and I wore heels the entire time it did not fall and I'm calling that a boss when

Kathleen Shannon 1:03:23
if you're feeling boss and when to submit your own boss moment or when go to WWW dot being boss club slash I am being boss. This episode of being boss was brought to you by fresh books cloud accounting, thank you to fresh books for sponsoring us and you guys can try it for free by going to freshbooks comm slash being boss. Thank you so much to our team and sponsors who make being boss possible our sound engineer and web developer Corey winter. Our editorial director and content manager Caitlin brain, our community manager and social media director Sharon lukey and are being countered David Austin, with support from braid creative and indicia biography,

Emily Thompson 1:04:02
do the work, the boss and we'll see you next week.