Listen: Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Stitcher
How in heaven’s name is it time for another year in review? These are my favorite episodes to record and to listen back to because it’s like opening up my diary and sharing it with the world (minus sharing all the mushy love-y dove-y stuff, of course!)
It’s time to talk numbers, what worked, what sucked, where I thrived and barely survived. I’m baring it all (in my cozy sweater in my closet) so that you can learn and if you want to jump in a time machine, this is my 3rd annual recap so if you want to see the growth in the last few years, check out 2017 + 2018 reviews, too! Let’s get into a recap of the last 365 days, ya ready?
Blacking out my calendar
This year I felt a level of freedom that I never knew was possible as a growing entrepreneur. Going into this year, I made an extreme decision to black out my entire year and have zero obligations on my calendar. It felt weird but so freeing for a girl who was coming from an industry that required booking out weekends a year in advance. I had a peace that even if this year wasn’t a year that my business would grow, I would be available to say yes and no to things in the moment.
I’ve been incredibly introspective this year and can feel a transition within my own self, going from someone who was fueled by feeling important and seen to someone who desires more freedom and privacy. I think motherhood caused a lot of that shift, but the number one thing I’ve been craving this year is freedom — freedom of time, of schedule, of money.
The beautiful thing about giving myself an entire year of margin is that I discovered new ways to generate profits while being fully available for my family. If I hadn’t blacked out my calendar, I likely wouldn’t have had the bandwidth or time to devote to some of the things that became my “best” and most impactful “yes-es” of this year.
So many of the experiences I’ve been a part of this year from a life giving retreat with my team to an eye opening mastermind with Tony Robbins came from saying no to everything at the beginning of the year so I could say yes to the things that felt most right. Going into next year, I am craving a bit more of a structure and a plan for my team and so I’m trying to land in a happy middle of not boxing myself into things but also having a clear direction and focus.
Holy cow did I smile when I read my “Year in Review” post from 2018 and the podcast because we had 16 million downloads on the show this year, more than doubled our sponsored income from last year, and saw significant growth in our communities online. Beyond that, I got a renewed sense of vigor for the show. It’s so exciting to me, it’s such a gift to get to sit in my closet and record content for you and get to talk to incredible women founders and ask them questions.
I had this moment the other day when I was sitting in my closet recording when I realized that I now make in one episode what I was once paid to shoot an entire wedding day. Like what? I get to sit in my closet in my sweats, share my knowledge, interview brilliant women and get paid for it? I’ve got to call out Kylie on this one because this girl has taken this show and just ran with it. This year has been silky smooth on the podcast front and this growth hasn’t come with growing pains and so much of that has to do with the woman behind me!
Growing My Team
And speaking of my incredible team members… A few months back, I made another hire, I hired an Integrator, Marisa. Her job is to essentially replace me as the person who everyone goes to when they have a question or a need and she is the point contact for all things JK to keep the brand running smoothly.
When we first met, she told me to tell her about the team and I said, “Well, we are a team of 5!” We have Caitlyn, Kylie, Danielle, Steph and me. Those four are my core — well, five, now with Marisa, but as the day went on, I had listed about 10 other women who serve my business on a consistent basis.
From Kerry who does our Facebook ads to our content writers, Brooklyn and Audrey, to our web designers. Then there’s Rebecca who runs our shop, copywriters, podcast editors, ad agents, the list goes on and on and on. It actually surprised me that by the end of it, I was looking at a list of 20 people that I was the point person for — no wonder I was feeling a little overwhelmed and looking for someone to help manage it all.
This was one of my hard things that turned into a mega win! You see, pre-Conley, I worked pretty normal hours. But then with Conley, I went from being a girl who would work in 4 hour stretches without even getting up to someone who was chipping away in 20 minute increments and with the ever growing team and contractor list, it’s easy to see how I consistently felt like I wasn’t ever caught up. I hated feeling like I was dropping balls for my team or the one thing that was holding us all back from moving forward.
Press play to hear more about my team and how each person manages their role and makes the entire business more efficient and effective.
I reflect on so many other areas in this episode including keeping things automated, affiliate launches and relationships, mindset and mentorship, the transformation of our marriage through parenthood, the purchase of our Lakehouse, and more. Press play so you can hear it all!
Financial Goals Reached
I set a big audacious goal this year. I wanted to save and invest enough money that I could retire any day I woke up and just didn’t want to work. I know that’s crazy for a 31 year old to say and to publicly talk about.
I’ve shared pretty openly that I’ve struggled with money mindsets in the past, most specifically always wanting more, more, more and finding security in the number in my bank account. This year I feel like there was a breakthrough in a lot of ways.
I have to tell you: I hit the goal that I had set, so sitting in my closet to record this show? It’s strictly because I WANT to, not because I have to. Showing up on social media? It’s my joy. Blogging content? Yes please… Literally anything you’ve seen me do, launch, or show up for is strictly because I WANT to do it and it’s changed so much for me.
Money provides this level of security for me and for a long time I withheld a lot of joy around money because I just kept saving and stockpiling and not allowing myself to enjoy what I had worked for. This year, I feel like I found a balance of reaping the rewards of the work I have done while still staying grounded. Truth be told, I still drive a 2008 car that I LOVE and have zero plans to trade in but I did enjoy some of the fun conveniences that money can buy like flying at the front of the plane and picking nicer hotels.
More from this Episode
Want to know the numbers? Hear what each facet of my business brought in? Tune into the episode to hear it all! So what didn’t work? What am I still figuring out as we go into 2020? This episode is a full download of this year for Team Jenna Kutcher and my entire business, so press play right now. Truly, I struggled to think of the negative because this year was truly the best year of my life. I know I say that every year, but I think the most beautiful part of this year was seeing that our season of waiting was worth it and that the work we did while waiting for our baby paid off.
It was the most fruitful year in life, in memories, and in business. I hope you enjoyed this deeper look into what you’ve been watching unfold online. Thanks for letting me recap the last 365 days and most importantly, thank you for being a part of our lives and story! Onto a new decade, are ya ready?