Today and tomorrow are a great time to shore up your 2009 goals. Where do you want to be in your personal and professional life at the end of 2010? Some of you have already chimed in:
Write a business plan. Kelly in Texas
Keep a journal. Allyson
Do soap as a part-time business. Dawnie in Wisconsin.
Adopt a baby. Carmen Rose in Virginia
Do an inventory. Anonymous
Introduce 20 new scents. E-Scentual in Florida.
Finish Chemistry course. Susan in British Columbia, Canada.
There are more on this post. Read through them if you missed the early starters. Their goals are inspiring. Like last year, I’ll randomly award one commenter a goody packet of essential oils, overpoured and underpoured colorants and random mis-pours from the Bramble Berry warehouse for readers who post any of their goals (it’s okay to keep some to yourself) here or on the previous post.
I have some goals to share as well. In 2009, Bramble Berry will be launching a series of How-To videos for cold process, melt and pour and all manner of toiletries. My goal for Q1 (Quarter One) is to finalize the set, write the scripts, shoot 3 months worth of videos and edit them. Another goal for Q1 is to launch our brand new website. Based on the feedback from this post, we’ve been working on a new, smarter shopping cart. My goal is to launch the cart in Q1.
In the personal goals category, I’d like to continue learning Chinese with 2 lessons per month, work out five times per week and start every work day off right with a protein shake.
To give yourself a better chance at success for your goals, they should be:
A generic: “Get Healthy” goal is none of these. Breaking down “Get Healthy” into something that is SMART looks like:
I will lose 10 pounds by April 15th. To do this, I will work out 5 times per week, eat a salad daily for lunch 5 times a week and limit my wine intake to 4 glasses per week.
Once you have your goal, write it down. I keep my goals (and my team’s goals) on whiteboards at the office (the whiteboard photo in this post is my actual goal board for the site launch), on Visionboards at my home and have emailed them to my Mastermind Group to help me be accountable. Sharing your goals is a great way to help keep yourself accountable.
Post them and inspire us all!
I want to start selling some of the soap that I have been making for relatives for the past few years.
The plan is to set aside the money I make from blogging, so that I can buy some product liability insurance, research local craft fairs and decide what ones would be good to start with, and narrow my products down to the ones I want to start with. I also will redesign one of my websites, so customers can place orders there when they run out of product.
Oh, I guess I should write this stuff down, too! 🙂
I also want to do more cold process. Right now I do mostly MP.
My ’09 goals
Does anyone NOT want to lose weight? I liked the post about eating salad for lunch and limiting wine to 4 glasses per week. I will adopt that and add: limit simple starches (white foods….)to no more than 1 small serving per day. This will be hard because my husband and I are big time foodies and he makes all the bread we eat.
Continue life goal of growing as much of our own food as possible and sourcing the rest as locally as possible.
As for business goals:
1. Inventory products on hand, plus supplies on hand.
2. Determine what products to keep the same and what to change this year.
3. Either use or find a home for the supplies I have on hand, particularly packaging.
4. Find at least one more retail outlet beyond what I have now, focusing on how to maximize profit for the time spent.
5. Learn more ways to get customers to my website and how to increase online sales.
6. Educate myself about the sources of my skincare ingredients and packaging, and try to make choices that prioritize local producers and suppliers; focus as much as possible on sustainable practices.
7. Increase PROFIT by at least 10%.
I grow lots of comfrey. I try to cut it before it flowers (you can cut it way back multiple times a season), and hang it in bunches to dry out of the light. When it’s totally dry I strip it from the tough stems into a plastic bucket which I keep covered and air tight to keep it nice and dry. When I am ready to use it I powder it in a small coffee grinder. I use it in CP soaps, and add it at trace. I also infuse it into oils to use in other potions. I have chopped it in the cuisinart and infused it fresh into oil and kept it warmed to about 100 degrees for 48 hours and then strained it, and have done the same thing with dried. No way to measure how much of the actual “good” you get from it either way. I don’t like to infuse fresh for too long, because I don’t want it to mold. By the way, if you didn’t know, it is a wonderful additive to your compost pile–makes stuff break down faster, and adds great nutrients to the soil. Also good to plant at the foot of your fruit trees, where it does the same thing. When it dies back after the freeze, it just composts in place.
1. I just bought quickbooks and plan to meet with an accountant to help me set up my bookkeeping.
2. Purchase product insurance.
3. Work on my website to make it easier to update products.
4. Put together a marketing package for local retail shops.
5. Remember to relax and let go…
Cheers, Happy 2009, & thanks so much for an excellent blog!
Carrie @ Under the Willow says
Toying with grad school…
Narrowing down the biz a bit~
Try not to take too much on at once~
Focus on what works and what doesn’t….
Hi Anne-Marie. Thank you for posting such a nice compliment on my blog. I’m really quite honored!! I got the inspiration for my packaging from your post on Boh Bon soaps and your discussion about packaging. It’s great that you keep us informed and inspired and are dedicated to not only selling, but also teaching. I think that is a mark of a successful business person.
I would like to push myself more in 2009. Push myself to become a better mom, a better business women, a better wife. Push myself to find time for my self, find time to enjoy friendsships with others, to stop and enjoy the small pleasures that life can bring. Most of all, I want to push myself to be the best I can be. No excuses, no tomorrows, everyday striving to accomplish my goals and live my life to the fullest.
~Christy Rose, KBShimmer
Zularis Naturals says
Personal goals would include:
1. Getting at least 8 hours of sleep on a daily basis (hard to do at times since I work 11pm to 7am at my regular job).
2. Reduce the amount of coffee I drink to no more then 2 daily. Maybe if I achieve goal 1 then I won’t be using coffee to keep my brain awake LOL.
3. Follow a low carb diet to possibly help with better seizure control (of course if I lost weight too I wouldn’t complain)
4. Take a reflexology or accupressure course
1. Post to blog at least 3 times a week
2. Send out newsletter twice a month
3. Figure out how to make and upload video tutorials to uTube or other similar sites
I see a common thread here. Maybe all creative people are challenged with clutter? Most passionately creative people I know are night owls who want to little other than create.
Thank you for the comfrey tips Anne Marie. Do you like comfrey or have a place to put it? It is beautiful…..
Would it be cheating to use M&P for this application????
I so enjoy this blog! It is wonderful to be a part of it!
Heavenly Scent Soaps says
Sorry not to have visited the Blog for a while. I’ve been having lots of fun with your Forum!!
My biggest 2009 goal is to GET RID OF THE CLUTTER!
The Foxes Den says
I would like to learn to balance my time between family, soapmaking, and teaching and planning for teaching. How am I going to do that? I’m going to get through this last semester and then I’ll be prepared for next year! I plan to get at least one wholesale account (working on that currently through my sister and the winery she invested in). My kids are close to college age, so I try to spend as much time as I can playing games, watching movies, sightseeing and doing whatever I can with them.
Sorry for the anonymous blogger won’t let me enter anything. I would like to develop a soap brand and have a part time job going so I can retire in about a year from my other job. I also want to go to the gym at work at least 3 times a week to just walk. Getting up from my desk and away from work for an hour has been difficult this past year and I think in order to handle everything at work I need to have a stress buster. This is kathleen at [email protected].
Blogger Candice said…
I have been reading your blog religiously for just over a year now – I didnt even know what soap making was until I accidentally stumbled upon it. Since then I have been continually inspired and found a new hobby that I truly enjoy. Seriously nothing has captivated my interest more than this ever. I have been whipping up M&P batches for about the same amount of time that I happened on this site and have been getting quite crafty at it …….SO……..upon discussion with my ultra-creative husband as well, we have decided to set up a soap shop within this year in rural South Africa. Even he is hooked on soap making now!
Thank you for being the inspiration behind this!
Lisa @ Serah's says
Happy New Year!!!
I don’t have any personal goals really just to improve some minor things but I know I get really busy and sometimes don’t make time for myself.
I have goals for my business. I want to really push my cupcake soaps and get my soaps in some stores, possibly.
I wish you much success in 2009!
My Life List says
Great Advice for all! Check out http://www.mylifelist.org for a great website that uses a proven methodology and the power of social networking to help people achieve their goals!!
CEO, My Life List
I have written personal and business goals!! I am excited to stick to them and see what 2009 brings me!
Paula Kates says
I had goals for last year and accomplished some really important ones (especially helping the family pay for groceries and gas), never got to some (like experimenting with mineral makeup)and eliminated the impossible search for the best source for fresh, unrefined shea butter. I learned a lot from the last one but it was becoming a full time job and my “trust” in product handling was decreasing by the day.
This year, I’d love to be able to contribute again in the support of my family/household, hold more soap classes and enter more soap competitions.
I am not much for resolutions but I do find that saying what I plan/want to do outside of my head (like on a blog comment page) lends a measure of accountability to my life, so thanks!
1) Submit to a budget both personally and professionally. The first step is to keep track of my spending. For the month of January, I will write down each expenditure, purpose, and anticipated replenishment date.
2) Seek wise counsel.
3) Create and adhere to a business plan.
4) Set priorities.
5) Spend less, give more.
LittleGems, It’s great that you’ve named a # for your goals for sales. Write it down and post it where you can see it often. I do that and my staff laughs at me (and call my fridge where the goals are posted “the magic fridge”) but it’s a great reminder, daily, for what I’m working towards.
Bridgette, Excellent list of aggressive goals. When you hit all of them, you’ll be firing on all cylinders and move your business forward in leaps and bounds. I’d love to host you up at Otion anytime – though we will be doing our Soap Weekend Intensive so that might be a good time for you to visit.
Belle, I like the term “money-conscious shopping.” I might borrow that phrase in any upcoing blog post; is that okay?
BathCake, Regular intervals for newsletters are important (or so I’ve heard from “the experts”). Your motivation to be a good example for your children is powerful. Be sure and keep that emotional hook fresh. It’s sure to help out on those down days when you don’t want to work out. =)
SierraSnow, I like how measurable your goals are. They're specific and time oriented! For what it's worth, my soap room is ridiculous! I hate to throw anything out so have oodles of half empty bottles of everything. =)
Firefly, Are you doing Pilates to work on growing taller?
Peace, Love & Soap, I have a girlfriend that does a lot of raw food and she makes this amazing live enzyme soup. It's always a huge hit when she shares it. And, I agree with your last comment about everything being connected – how you do anything is how you do everything.
Kat, You know more Chinese than I do right now. I am having a really hard time with it. Thankfully, telling everyone here that I'm working on it will challenge me to do better. As for mileage logs for 3 vehicles, good luck! I have a hard time with this one as well. As for your herbs, I'd infuse in olive oil and do one batch with dried, ground herb and one without. The herb might be scritchy and you don't want that. Definitey rebatch. Not CP to try to keep the benefits in the soap.
Raise $2000 for our adoption between now September. This will be done through continuing to sell soap, garage sales and (hopefully) receiving a grant.
Begin selling soap in shops. My first step toward this is to visit the shops on my list and ask.
Workout 5 times/week. Weight loss would be great, but I mostly want to make this a lifelong change, not just a strategy for a short-term goal.
Set aside specific time to spend with each of my children each week so they can have my undivided attention.
Go out on a date with hubby once a month.
Hello and Happy New Year!
I am brand spanking new to soaping – just did a few melt and pour gifts for the holidays. So this year I am going to:
A. Learn and try cold processing
B. Spend half a day once a month practicing my new found hobby
Thanks, your blog has been a blessing!
Business: I would like to find a way to sustain the success Bath Cake showed for 4Q 2008. As a start to this, I need to improve my infrastructure, by setting up a more automated inventory for myself as well as dedicate space within my home for it (rather than share space). I also need to take a more hands on approach to reaching out to my customers – ‘smart’ steps would be to be sure to blog my own blog at least twice a week and to make my newsletter on regular intervals instead of random.
Health: exercise at least 5x/week. Pay more attention to my own health instead of everyone else’s. Lead my children by example in exercise and healthy eating. (I’ve written a more detailed plan for this elsewhere already).
– spend 20-30 minutes a day reading something in print, not on a screen.
1) Cook more, which would entail making weekly menus that I must stick to.
2) Read a little each day for pleasure.
3) Finish my craft UFOs. So that I can start new ones!
4) Money-consious shopping.
The Artist says
A few of my goals are:
Get healthier,by getting my butt back to the gym 4-5 days a week,eat better,I eat out a lot and yet I am a great cook,so more home cooked meals for me.Quit smoking!All those will lead to greater success for me.
Making plans to buy a home this year,so I can by 2010 adopt a child,my son wants a sibling so bad,and I love being a mom.A spacious enough home for my soaping business!!I cant wait!!I have a long journey but 2009 will be a year of personal fulfillment and success!!
Happy New Year to everyone!!!!!!!!
Reading everyone’s goals is encouraging and motivating. I have a lengthly list of goals for 2009 so I will only post some of them as to not take up all the room:
1) Go back to weight watchers and attend meeting each week and resume work on my weight loss goals.
2) Get excercise back in my life starting with 3 times a week and increase to 5 times a week
3) Clean and organize my work room and office (I loose so much time looking for things)
4) Continue to work to pay down debt. Specifically to reduce credit card debt by 50% in 2009
5) Actively market my business. Contact at least 10 prospects each month for wholesale business.
6) Post to my blog at least 3 times a week
7) Bring my website up-to-date and maintain
8) Get my Etsy shop going.
I have specific details and steps for each of the above goals and others and I am working on a vision board and a chart for all my goals that I can put up as a frequent reminder of where I want to be by the end of 2009.
Thanks for all your great posts and information. You have definitely inspired me in my business and I learn so much from you. In fact, continuing my education in soaping and such is one of my goals and in that I want to take advantage of the personal training weekends that you offer this year as well.
Happy New Year to all!
hi ann marie-
i would like to trademark my soap biz name in the year 2009. i will need to scrape/save $, as i just started my biz online this year. i feel it is an important step to make my soap biz official and "real"…mentally for me.
also, would like to loose 25lbs, then get pregnant again (hehe…want to get rid of the "twin pregnancy leftovers and then some" first!!)
i also want to be the best mommy i can be for my twin 2yr old boys:) I need to practice & improve on my patience…and persistence/dicipline 😀
Sara at Soap Rehab says
One of my goals for 2009 is to reduce my credit card debt. My specific goal is to pay off the smaller one and cut the larger one in half.
-I want to hit 50 sales (maybe even 75 by 2010) before the christmas season in my etsy shop, I’m going to promote my shop more and get my name out there anyway I can.
-I did 3 craft fairs last year and this year I want to do 4 to help my sales and build my following (this will also help my first goal)
– My Husband and I want to be home owners, we are going to look research and hopefully buy smart before Summer
– Learn to Knit! I have everything to help me and a background in crocheting but this year I’m going to bite the bullet and learn!
BEST OF LUCK EVERYONE I HOPE WE ALL MAKE 09 AMAZING!
this is a technical question for all of you veteran soapers: i have a beautiful verdant grouping of heirloom comfrey plants growing in my garden. 100% organic. They have not frozen or died back due to the mildness of our texas winters. but i would love to harvest them before they can freeze. i want to make a comfrey soap that would be therapeutic for irritated and troubled skins afflicted by excema, dermatitis, acne, etc. comfrey is a truly wonderful herb and is on the FDA hit list due to some poor woman who ingested 150+ capsules and hurt her liver way back when.
which of the following would you do to my wonderful plants in order to get the most benefit out of a comfrey soap?
a) cut, dry in oven, and grind to powder.
b) cut, dry, and break into pieces
c) infuse for 2 weeks in pure olive pomace.
d) infuse for 2 weeks in which other oil?
e) make a tincture in alcohol
f) make an extract in glycerin
g) grind fresh and put in shredded for rebatch?
this would be leaf only; i am not ready to part with my wonderful roots…..
h) other method not listed above?
i’m thinking rebatch would get the most benefit from the herb?
i am the new kid on the block so please feel free to imput.
thank you, anne marie for the space to post this question.
ok back to vacuuming….party tonight.
specific, measurable, achievable, time oriented.
ok, so with this criteria, i have come finally to recognize that multi tasking is not what it is all cracked up to be. therefore I add an addendum to the afore mentioned goals:
never do a load of laundry again unless I purpose to fold it fresh from the dryer! this one thing has caused consternation amongst all members of my domicile.
acquire 2 or 3 fundraisers this calendar year.
acquire (by selling!) (they will not fall from the sky) 3 wholesale accounts. I will accept more, however….maybe 5 is better!
follow the mandate stated in the first book of Genesis (Oh what a book!) Take dominion over my domicile and pound it into submission. No, rule in the midst of my enemies! Subdue and rule as matriarch over my own household! Declare, Let there be Light! and bring chaos into order and beauty.
Hire a gardener or if not, a household helper as I am very challenged in this area! Elicit the help of my family. Make my home a place of peace.
we won’t even talk about health and beauty. for a start, don’t leave house without makeup. walk more. this has such a calming effect on me. it has been proven to alleviate stress and depression as well.
keep my receipts in order! avoid irs suicide! keep mileage log for all 3 vehicles.
keep office clean and tidy. ouch.
that one is hard. kick kitten out of there.
play my new piano 1/2 hour per day. a truly calming, centering thing to do. find good place to keep it!
find thee other vendors to complement my product lines. this one has been hard and i had given up but will pick up again.
enough of me. ad nauseum.
Anne Marie, I think your website is wonderful. Very very functional and totally integrated. I think if is state of the art! I love all the links leading to other products so I don’t have to waste time scrolling and scrolling. I also especially like that you provide everything necessary to do the job! Even the dreaded, formidable labels!!!
Mary @ Annie's Goat Hill says
I have written nearly 4 pages of thoughts in my notebook these past several days. Some of the goals I can repeat, some I am still working on. And I am excited! I have all sorts of ideas under my hat, both business and personal. Most are tangible, meaning, they are measurable, with deadlines. I am now on a better track, with a mission!
Personal – I will be getting the extra 22 pounds off of my middle by 6/1/09, and it will remain off for the remainder of 2009.
Business – Plans include a 2009 business plan, updated mission statement, product placements, upgrades to the accounting system, shop and office overhauls, website renewing, product testing, and the list goes on!
My first shop goal for 2009 is to reorganize and label bins of supplies by March first. (it is cold out there now!)I will plan, send out invitations and host a home show two weeks before Mothers Day. The products will include at least two new spring and summer fragrances.
My health goal is to get back on Weight Watchers planner daily (today!)and lose those last 10 pounds again by April 1st. I will set a new health goal on April 1st.
sik m sik gong gong dong wa?
ho ho sik?
meng m meng bat a?
do je le!
ne how ma?!
i am fascinated by you learning chinese! how awesome is that?
i lived in hong kong for 5 years and learned smatterings of cantonese. truly the most fascinating city in the world to me! a feat to be mastered! does this mean you will become ex’ port a?
but this “cantonese” is buried under 3 years of living subsequently in thailand where i actually earned the 6th grade certificate in reading, speaking, and writing thai!
like chinese they have more than 26characters and are a tonal language. so, when getting in my taxi in hong kong, if i did not say the address in the proper tone, the driver would misunderstand me, and wonder if i lived in a pineapple! ha ha!!!
sup ho bo lo do m goi!
ok, i am off subject….sorry!
koinonia community says
No goals for this year except to let people know what they mean to me. I have enjoyed this little window into your life this last couple of years. Thank you for your time Anne-Marie, and for a quality product and customer service. I pray you and your family and your company experience a blessed 2009.
btw- don’t include me in the drawing. I don’t have anywhere to keep anything for the time being, and am trying to dwindle down my stored stuff. Plus I’ll be offline again for awhile after tomorrow.
Peace, Love & Soap says
It is so inspiring to read fellow commentor's goals! I find myself reading others' inspirations and thinking "oh yeah, I really need to do that, too" But here are some of my personal & professional goals for '09…..
1) Eat more "living" foods
2) Utilize my new gym membership (just joined yesterday)
3) work on getting a website to use along with my blog for my business
4) Spend more time with my girlfriends
5) Be "in the moment" with my kids and keep in mind that they are only this little once!
6) Get more involved with my church
7) Be a giver
8) Put others' before myself
I think that many times personal and professional goals intersect. If your personal life is in line, your professional life will fall in. Happy New Year Everybody!
My Goals are to reduce my debt by putting away the credit cards and paying as much extra every month as possible.
Make more soap, and learn about essential oils and how to combine to get great scents.
I will lose weight by going to the Gym 5 days a week and watching mwhat I eat. I will give up Chocolate for the month of January!
This last year has been a tough one. I am trying to be realistic and full of hope for 2009. My plan is to smile more, laugh more, live more,
love more,& give more.
If anything else happens, well than that will just be a bonus 🙂
I want to grow taller(though it’s not really determined by me) and to pass a challenge test in August! I will study hard and succeed!
This year I strive to create an organized home. I have chosen Tuesday as my ”tackle it’ day and plan to organize one item in my home on every tuesday.
Stickinging to one simple goal will help me achieve it while still keeping up my busy life as a mom, wife and soaper.
back to WW first monday of Jan. I lost 40 lbs last year and have another 40 to go. It is amazing how much energy I gained by losing some fat!
Next goal is to use my Christmas present (a canon camera) and take pictures with the light box I am going to build and update and renew my web site and my ETSY site.
I am going to contact 5 business a month until I have 2 retail stores carrying my products in each of the small towns around my town.
I am going to declutter my house and make it a warm and inviting home.
I am going to clean out the soap room and use all the supplies I have bought over the last 7 years and never used, from containers to supplies. I am going to sell off the slow selling product and review and do product testing on new fragrances.
I am going to use new camera to take pictures of our lovely valley and start a blog, register with Twitter, My Space, and Facebook, keep up with the blogs I love to read (yes that is you) and post more often on the forums I belong to (like ETSY).
I am looking forward to a better, new, profitable year.
Michelle in NV
Goals were achieved for 2008. For 2009, expand the workshop to stage 2 of 5 and refit, soap more, book the tickets for the next holiday.
Good analogy, SwiftCraftyMonkey! I like it. And, I like your long comment. I found a lot of value in this one =)
Lynn H in Seattle says
I want to learn something new for each hobby; soaping, lotion making, weaving, jewelry making. And to learn something new on each trip I take — 3 already planned.
Thanks for the reminder about SMART goals, Anne-Marie! I think it helps to think of all our goals as being a daily commitment, and breaking them down into baby steps to make them more manageable. Going to university isn’t a four year commitment; it’s a decision you make very day. You go to class, study, take your exams, finish essays — you can stop going any time you want, but the daily decision to continue towards the greater goal of learning more or obtaining a degree. I’m trying to get my blood sugar down to a reasonable level and every day I wake up and think, “What can I bring for lunch today? What will I have for breakfast? What healthy snacks will I have on hand?” because every day I have to make the good decisions to get me to my goal.
I find breaking the goals down to the specific identifiable day to day actions I have to take to get to where I want to be really helps me feel more in control of what I have in life. That isn’t to say we don’t keep our eye on the big picture or the end result we wish to achieve, but that we have to live our goals on a daily basis in order to make them part of our lives.
Thanks again for the inspiring post! (And sorry for my lengthy one!)
Teresa R says
I’d listed some goals/resolutions in my blog, but the two I most want to keep are
1) to do something creative every day, whether writing, drawing/painting, soaping, knitting, etc. and
2) to keep my sharp tongue in check – to speak with love and civility to everyone including my kids (with whom it is easy to lose my temper since I spend all day, every day with them).
patti flynn says
i want to walk more, garden more, soap more, travel more, cook more!
I want to do more soaping…and get involved with the Beach’s Art Walk since the down town one was a bust.