Sounds of the Month: July Round Up

sunset on the beach

Sooooo… I thought I was keeping track of all my podcasts this month. I was pulling some great quotes, had a couple of timestamps to share. The works.

Then, when it came time to actually write this post, I realized all my notes were gone. Poof. Hello, panic.

Apparently Asana doesn't automatically save when you're updating descriptions from the mobile app. Oops. Rooky mistake to assume it works the same way my iPhone notes app does. (PSA: Always triple check and hit save).

Anyway. What can ya do. On the bright side, I got to revisit the episodes that stayed with me the most (so hopefully the lessons will stick even more!).

This month, I realized most of the podcasts I listened to are writing or business-related (no surprise). I might want to diversify next month, but I make no promises. Here are my favorite sounds of the month.

Favorite podcasts this month

1. Putting Your Business In Maintenance Mode With ScaleSpark Founder Susan Boles (What Works)

Oh, how I would LOVE to spend less time on making decisions for my business. It’s definitely not efficient to lose track of your day-to-day operations or start from scratch for every single project. I know this, you know this—but most of us wait until we’re in crisis mode before setting up templates, systems, and standard operating procedures.

That’s why I loved this episode. Learning about maintenance mode was the reminder I needed to get my systems and processes in place. Here’s how ScaleSpark founder Susan Boles describes maintenance mode:

Maintenance mode is creating operations in your business that keep ticking. Everyone on your team knows what to do next. There are very solid processes for how client delivery works...It’s a lightening of having to make decisions.”

And who doesn’t need some lightening of decisions in their life (!?).

I’m trying to set onboarding templates and procedures in place well before I absolutely need to delegate. If I want this business thing to last, I can’t keep making everything up as I go along. I need to get a process in place (there’s my goal for this coming week!).

Like Susan says: “You don’t have to be in a capacity crisis—it doesn’t have to be a necessity.” Instead, see if you can get ahead of it. Start creating some checklists and procedures for your business so you can put your business on maintenance mode when you need to.

2. Fun is Better than Perfect with Jimmie Bise, Jr. (Write Now)

The title of this episode is my new favorite creativity mantra. “Fun is Better than Perfect.” I’d so much rather chase FUN over clawing my way to perfection (like that exists).

If you’re like me and you put a lot of your self-worth in your work, give this one a listen. There are SO MANY GEMS in this episode. Here's one of my favorite lines from author Jimmie Bise, Jr. :

“You make things, things don’t make you.”

Don’t you just LOVE that? What you create doesn’t define you. You can create for the sake of creating.

This month, I spent some time scribble-painting without any pressure to make something worth showing anyone. I wasn’t going to sell the scribbles or try to turn it into a business—I just created for fun. And I SWEAR it helped me with my writing practice.

Jimmie says there’s a reason for that:

“If you are a creative person, you cannot do just one thing.”

The way he explains it, a good jazz player doesn’t only play the saxophone. He plays multiple instruments. And why's that? Well, you need to play around with different mediums. Jimmie shared:

“Creativity best works when you have a lot of channels flowing in a lot of different directions, so if one gets temporarily bottled up you have a bunch of other things going.”

So THAT’S why I feel like a full human when I sprinkle in some piano, painting, or ukulele into my weeks. Gotta keep all the channels flowing.

3. No Such Thing as Vanity Metrics (The Defiant Business Podcast)

If you’re in the mood for some marketing “real talk,” Ruthie Bowles has got you covered. There’s been so much talk about ignoring vanity metrics lately, and I enjoyed hearing Ruthie’s take on the whole thing. Ruthie shares why vanity metrics are usually taken out of context.

Different metrics answer different questions. Are you wondering if people are seeing your content? Trying to increase brand awareness? Then, as Ruthie says, your likes and comments “are not vanity metrics within the context of the full story.”

I loved how Ruthie challenged marketers not to judge others for measuring the “awareness stage” metrics. As an example, if most of your business comes from referrals, then "likes" aren’t the metric you need to be measuring. But that doesn’t mean another business shouldn’t be paying attention to those numbers. It all depends on your goals!

Over the last year or so, I’ve tried not to get too hung up on my likes and comments to protect my mental health. But I’m realizing, if I’m trying to measure how my brand awareness goals are going, I do need to take a closer look at them. (So long as I’m not putting my self-worth into the metrics).

Favorite songs this month

1. Right on Time (Brandi Carlile)

I finished Brandi Carlile’s memoir, then a few days later she released her latest song. I’m not even going to pretend like I didn’t cry. This song came out “right on time” if you ask me. (Can't wait for her show in August!!!!).

2. MANGO (Grace Mitchell)

I am forever and always adding to my s’all good playlist on Spotify. Here’s the latest addition to my shuffle-friendly (and driving-friendly) list.

3. Savannah (Relient K)

Who doesn’t love a good Relient K throwback? Well, I’m cheating because I pretty much only listened to their mmhmm album back in the day. Savannah popped up in my Discover Weekly and I’m not mad about it.

What did you listen to this month? I’m all ears.

Tell me your favorite song or podcast episode from this month. Message me on Instagram or Twitter @karonicapaige.