Q2 Recap: Why We Don’t Find Our Passion

Where did the last three months go?

In the last 12 weeks, I traveled to two different countries overseas, I started (and semi-abandoned) a YouTube channel, grew my Instagram account to 15,000 followers and I moved back into my mom’s place.

Oh, and I turned 25.

🍦@milkbarstore 📸@zoevock

A post shared by Talia Koren (@thetalillama) on

But the most important thing I accomplished this quarter? I got one BIG step closer to figuring out exactly what I want to do.

If you read the post I wrote in November after getting laid off, then you know I’m pretty comfortable with the mindset of NOT having a career path.

Even now, if we were talking about my work and you asked me, “Talia, what do you want to be in five years?” I still don’t have an answer for you.

At the very least, I now know what I want to focus more on.

But before I get into that, I’m going to tell you how I got there.

In my Q1 recap, I listed nine different projects that I worked on in those three months. Well, I can now add a few more.

This quarter, I worked on these projects:

  • I was a customer service rep for JustReachOut.io, a platform that helps people send quality pitches to journalists (something I know a lot about)
  • I wrote my first advertorial for a skin care company called Prescribd
  • I wrote a bi-weekly blog and newsletter for LeadWise, a startup with a mission to disrupt the way we traditionally run a business
  • Set up a social media campaign for CardCon, an event at FinCon
  • Ran a live workshop where I taught business owners and marketing strategists how to streamline content creation and come up with a content calendar they could stick to
  • Ran another live workshop where I taught business owners how to use Instagram as another channel for finding customers, making sales, building their email list and more
  • Developed and ran an outreach campaign for MessageLoud, an app that actually helps people practice safer driving without having to put their phone on airplane mode
  • I’m in the process of editing a book proposal
  • I put together a report based on a thorough survey for a personal finance company called Wealth Enhancers
  • I also edited an entire manuscript!
  • I crafted, wrote and executed a beast of a marketing strategy for the launch of my client’s online coaching product
  • I consulted on a contributor recruitment project for a new platform for entrepreneurs
  • Lastly, I continued to ghostwrite blog posts for various clients and companies

That’s 13 different projects!

This quarter I learned that doing a lot of different things is a double-edged sword.

On one hand, I lost my damn mind juggling all these projects AND Workweek Lunch, my food blog (more on that later).

I’m not complaining — I did this to myself. I knew what having a “yes, and” mentality around work would lead me to burn out.

On the other hand, working on this many projects helped me learn three crucial things about myself that I didn’t know (or think about) before.

  1. I need to make some serious improvements to the way I manage my time.
  2. I don’t like blogging, editing or outreach nearly as much as I like direct response copywriting.
  3. I want Workweek Lunch to be my main gig.

The untold story of Workweek Lunch

There's an important story behind this photo. ✨ Instagram makes healthy living look SO easy, like it just happens magically. ✨ I wasn't always good at cooking interesting healthy and simple meals. I used to bring food to work and buy lunch anyway, abandoning my soggy salad in the office fridge. ✨ It took me two years to develop a diet and system that works for me. Despite what we see on social media, there's no ONE hack or recipe or product that will get the results we're working hard for. ✨ Real progress is a long game, and it looks different for everyone. ✨ I want you to appreciate your journey. Look at how far YOU have come. Give yourself credit for putting in work, even if you don't have the results you want yet. ✨ You'll get there. As for this photo of my vegan meals? It might look perfect, but I still have a ways to go too. . . . . #mealprepper #mealpreponfleek #mealprepsociety #mealprepsunday #mealprepsundays #mealprepmonday #mealprepdaily #mealprepandchill #mealprepideas #mealpreponpoint #foodprep #healthymealprep #workmealprep #worklunch #desklunch #healthylunch #healthydinner #healthydinnerideas #tupplife #whatieatinaday #veganmeals #veganmealprep #veganfoodshare #veganmealplan #plantbaseddiet #plantbasedliving

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Over a year ago, I invested in an online course called Zero To Launch that teaches normal people how to launch online products.

Fast forward just one year, and I now have a thriving healthy cooking blog with nearly 15,000 monthly visitors and a growing email list. What?!

It’s crazy. Six months ago, I felt stuck with Workweek Lunch. Now? It’s becoming my primary focus, and dare I say it — my passion.

If you’d asked two years ago if I had any desire to run a food blog, I would have laughed.

Helping other people figure out healthy eating was NOT a passion I had hidden within me. I became passionate about it after I got good at it and saw how much my material and guidance helped others.

The traditional advice of “find your passion” (as if that solves every problem) is super misleading.

It turns out that you can’t find or discover your passion.

Instead, you work hard at something, and when you get good at it, you start to feel passionate about it.

Think about your current life passions. How did you become passionate about them? Does that statement above ring true for you?

Passion-cycle-1-short

That’s what’s happening to me right now.

It’s happening to me with Workweek Lunch as I create content and resources that resonate with my readers.

It’s also happening to me with email marketing and social media strategy, which is what I want to focus more on as a freelancer.

So… I figured out what I want to do. Now what?

The week after I got home from Israel was the hardest week of my freelancing career to date.

The Neve Yam beach is a gem. 🌊⛱☀️

A post shared by Talia Koren (@thetalillama) on

It was even harder than the week I had to end a few projects because I overloaded myself. It was harder than the week I got laid off.

When I launched myself back into work, I felt overwhelmed, lonely and completely unmotivated.

I panicked. I had to drum up work quickly, which has never been a problem… until now.

After eight months of freelancing, I realized that I need to make more money to keep my business AND life going.

That means I need to…

  • Stop taking on projects I dislike
  • Continue to build my network and push my email marketing/social media strategy skillset
  • Get Workweek Lunch up and running to generate the passive income I originally created it for

It’s a simple, completely doable list, right? Making the transition from being a Swiss army knife (someone who can do everything) to becoming a machete isn’t easy, but it’s necessary if I want to continue to grow.

 

One of my life rules is… If you’re comfortable, you’re probably not taking enough risks.

Moving away from ghost blogging

As much as I enjoy blogging, I enjoy copywriting and email marketing 10x more.

In May, I had the opportunity to write, create and execute the marketing strategy and email campaign for one of my clients’ product launches. It was my favorite project EVER.

It feels good to move forward with a service that has slightly higher value to my clients and is more challenging for me.

I see moving in this direction as another way of helping companies provide the most value possible to their readers and develop a relationship with them — just through a different channel (email).

As for social media strategy? This is brand new for me.

Since I got nerdy about Instagram and looked closer at how copywriting techniques can be applied to social media, I’m now starting to offer workshops to help businesses maximize the time they spend on each platform and move the lead generation and sales needle.

So far, I love it. I’ll keep you posted on how that goes, and you’ll start to see Instagram-related material on the blog soon.

What I have to look forward to in Q3:

This year is seriously flying by.

One important goal for Q3 are expanding on the live workshops I’ve been teaching and taking them online or offering them for free wherever in the world I am.

I have a revenue goal for Q3 too, and while I honestly did not hit my Q1 or Q2 revenue goals, that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t stop trying.

July

July is a good month. I’m celebrating TWO important anniversaries: The one year anniversary of Workweek Lunch and the two year anniversary of my relationship with Curt. Whaaaaa?

To honor the Workweek Lunch anniversary, I’m so excited to announce that now have over 1,500 subscribers and I’m launching my FIRST product.

It’s a meal plan that will guide my readers through cooking healthy, efficient and interesting meals for the workweek. I’ll let you know how it goes! And if you want in, you can subscribe to Workweek Lunch here.

August

August is going to be a bittersweet month for me. Curt will be gone training for his upcoming deployment, so I’m taking that time to travel. I’m headed to Portland, San Francisco and then Colorado and secure an apartment! Big moves happening.

September

September is going to be an even harder month because it’s the last time I’ll see Curt for a long time. (I know, a lot of relationship stuff in this post… but I’ve never dated an Army reservist before). I hope to have my Workweek Lunch product launched by then too.

I’m probably moving across the country on October 6th. 

That’s when I’m going to hop in my car and drive across the country to live the dream I’ve had for 10 years!

Hey, thanks for reading!

Thank you so much for reading all the way through this. Your support means a lot to me and I hope you pulled something from this post you can apply to your life.

If you liked this, subscribe to my list here so you can catch all my updates while I move across the country and stuff.

 

 

 

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