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Taking a break – Why I took one and how it helped

taking a break – why I took one and how it helped

If you’ve noticed I haven’t posted a new blog post in over a year. I’ve also haven’t sent many newsletters or updated the brand library since then as well. Let’s just say I decided to take a break but one I didn’t plan on taking.

If you’ve been following me on social media I was still very much active, especially on Instagram. Not as active as I would of hope to be but much more than I was here on this site. Scheduling played a big factor in me being able to keep up with Instagram and Twitter posts throughout the year. There were times where I took a few weeks off from posting on social media.

started the year feeling pumped – then crashed

+ plans were made but not acted on

Like most entrepreneurs, I started the year off with tons of goals and ideas for my brands’ website and products. As the days went by things started to not get done. I just didn’t have the time to complete these goals but in all honesty, I just wasn’t motivated enough. I’ll set aside time to craft creative ideas for the site but never find the time to start to implement these ideas. As much as I write on the importance of sticking to a schedule, I wasn’t able to do so.

focused mainly on client work

I found myself focusing on helping others, whether it was for graphics or web design. One thing I learned this year is taking on too many projects is bad for my health. There were many times where I just couldn’t keep up with the workload I had. On top of having my own online business, I do work a full-time job along with a personal life. At the top of the year, I just didn’t have any free time whatsoever.

reasons for no blog posts

+ realized that taking on too much work is a bad thing.

The main problem was that I wasn’t motivated to go ahead and write on those topics. Client work also played a factor in not being able to write as much as I had hoped. Client work is extremely important to me and throughout the year most of my focus went to my clients. My brand kinda took a back seat for most of the year, especially when it came to writing blog posts. I also found that people were more interested in what free template I had to offer rather than the content that was written in the post.

didn’t feel motivated to send out any newsletters

+ it really isn’t about how many people are on your list.

In a six month period I only sent out two emails to my subscribers. A new year email and one about the GDPR compliances. My newsletter used to be one of the greatest things to focus on but at the end of last year, I slowly started losing interest. About 80% of the people on my subscribers list signed up for either the free brand board template or access to the brand library. Anything else they didn’t seem to care about. I grew my list over the years to 3,000+ subscribers and honestly, I got more responses and engagements when I had under 1,000 subscribers. Being that I wasn’t getting enough responses when I sent out my emails, I just felt there was a need for me to put my focus there anymore.

why no new products

+ finding it hard to stand out in an oversaturated field.

For about a year now I haven’t released any new social media templates for sale. Similar to other aspects of my brand I just couldn’t find the time or motivation to create new templates. My online shop has been slacking because of it, I only get about 2-3 sales for the entire month via my official webpage. My templates do really well over on Creative Market and I’m very grateful for that, the downside to that is I lose more money because they take about 30% of each sale.

I’ve had ideas for new products but honestly the market for branding and social media templates it just so saturated that I only want to put one out that stands out from the hundreds of others that already exist. It’s much hard than it looks to create such a product, I don’t want to put out a simple new set of templates and hope that someone purchases it.

here is what I learnt from this break

From this time apart from my website I’ve learned that no one is perfect, it’s ok to take a break. Putting all my focus on clients and neglecting my own personal brand is the wrong thing to do – yes these said clients help pay the bills but in order for me to get more like them I have to keep up to date with my own personal brand. My focus should not be about what new FREE template I can offer my visitors, by doing this most of them will always expect to receive free items and hesitate to purchase paid downloads.

Having a large subscribers list is not always the way to go if you have 10+ thousand subscribers but a response rate of less than 10% what is the point of having so many? They are just taking up space in your list. Creating block schedules helps keep things on track, setting aside 1 day in the week to focus on my personal brand.

In all, I apologize to those that visited the site expecting to find a new blog post, signed up to join the brand library and expected to see new downloads available each month. Also to those that subscribe to my newsletter expecting to see these posts in your inbox. I will try my best to keep on track for the remaining of the year into next year. No one is perfect, there is no guarantee that I’ll be able to keep up but I’m going to set goals for this site that I know will be possible to reach.

If you aren’t following me on my social media accounts, please do so to get updates on what I’m currently working on. I promise I do post more regularly on these networks included my Instagram. Will also be doing more to increase my Instagram engagement and utilizing Instagram Stories.


Until Next Time
xo. sharifa