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the art of being a goal-getter (part 1)…

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A couple weeks ago, I was the keynote speaker for Alt for Everyone—the online version of the awesome Alt Summit conference. Rather than talk about tips for blogging and repeating things you can already find in my book, I wanted to focus on my talk on one major thing that I think makes for a successful businessperson: Being a "goal-getter". Since I received a lot of great feedback on the talk and really enjoy the subject, I'm going to do a two-part post (a mini version of my presentation for Alt) sharing with you how I've gone about being a goal-getter in my own life and tips for you on how to be a goal-getter yourself.

To begin, I have to say that I think we often look at successful people and assume that they must be really lucky or have "connections" that have helped them get to where they are. Sure, there's often a little luck involved and knowing certain people in certain situations can be helpful, but I fully believe in going after what you want in life. 75% of the business successes I've had are ones in which I sought out the opportunities and pitched myself or my ideas in order to make them happen. It's all about knowing what your goals are, then taking the right steps to achieve them.

So for the first part of this series, I'm going to share a bit of my career history with you guys, tell you how being a goal-getter is something I learned at a young age, and show how I have applied it throughout my life…


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When I was 13, my mom started taking calligraphy classes, and I eventually started going with her. I became the youngest member of the Philadelphia Calligraphers' Society, and I decided to take my new skills and make a business out of them: Calligraphy by Joy. I put flyers in the mailboxes around my neighborhood, and I thought I'd have people lining up to hire me! But then nothing happened, and I quickly realized that no one would hire me if they didn't know what I could do. So I asked my karate teacher if I could address the certificates that were given out at the belt ceremonies. He said yes, and that became my chance to show people what I could do. Soon, a few people hired me to address their wedding invitations and Christmas cards. I certainly wasn't rolling in dough, but the experience showed me that I needed to prove what I could do in order to have a better chance of getting more business.

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When I was 16, I was immersed in prepping for college, getting good grades, and studying for the SATs, and I needed a creative outlet to take my mind off all the academics. So I started baking. I eventually became pretty good at making banana bread and decided to sell the loaves I was baking up daily. Thinking back on my experience with Calligraphy by Joy, I remembered that I needed to show people what I could do in order for them to want to buy my product. So my Dad suggested that he give samples of my bread to the customers at his restaurant after they'd finished their dinners (my parents owned Thai restaurants growing up). Soon I was taking orders for banana bread!

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After finishing high school and college (I went to Syracuse University and graduated with a degree in Communications Design, which is the same as graphic design), I knew I wanted to work in New York City at a small ad agency. Two weeks after graduating, without anything lined up, I moved to NYC with a friend in search of my first job. After applying to a bazillion positions, I decided to simply contact companies I liked and knew I would want to work for (not knowing if they had any job openings or not). Finally, one of the companies I reached out to called me for an interview because my resume hit their desk just as they were about to put up a job posting. The timing was perfect, and it saved them from having to weed through hundreds of resumes. For the next two years, I worked as a graphic designer for a boutique ad agency with fashion and beauty clients. I got to go to Fashion Week every season, and my love of fashion really began around this time.

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A couple years into that first job, I really began to crave designing products for the everyday person. I loved textiles and home decor, and decided I wanted to design patterns—except I had no real textile design experience. But I knew I could design patterns if I was given a chance, but wasn't sure who would give me a chance. So I put together a giant postcard with work from my portfolio that showcased graphics that would be most attractive to the companies I was reaching out to. I put the giant postcard into an envelope wrapped in a pattern I had created, then sent it to a handful of my favorite textile and fashion companies in New York. And finally, I got a call from Cynthia Rowley's office—they were looking for a textile designer for their Swell line for Target. Because I didn't have a ton of experience in that area, the art director gave me a test project to complete. I guess she saw enough potential in me to give me the job, and I went on to design hundreds of products for the Swell line over the course of the next year.

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In 2005, I left New York to move to Philly with Bob. Having had gained a ton of product design experience at Cynthia Rowley, I decided I wanted to continue designing home products and work for the home department at Anthropologie. I again sent over some of my work in the mail to attract their attention, along with my resume. I got an interview, but sadly, the position I wanted wasn't available. So I applied for another position as a web designer at Free People. I didn't get that job, either, and was devastated. So I began freelancing to make money and started my blog—both things that led me down a path I had never expected but that ended up being some of best things ever. And years later, I still got a chance to work with Anthropologie in other ways (like this and this!).

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My "freelancing to pay the bills" work ended up turning into my own full-time design business. But a couple years into designing for my clients, I realized I wanted to design products that had my own name on them. So I launched my own stationery line at the National Stationery Show in 2007. It was the first time that I had my name on items I designed, and it felt so good! My stationery was picked up and sold by some of my dream stores, like Anthropologie, Kate's Paperie, and Paper Source…but….

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I hated the production part of the stationery business. I was spending more time packaging and shipping orders then I was creating new products or designs. So I decided to explore licensing. While you get a smaller percentage of the profit when you license your designs, you don't have to produce, manufacture, or sell the items yourself—which was much more in line with the way I wanted to work. And every licensing collaboration I worked on initially were all ones I went after and pitched myself. I contacted companies like Tiny Prints and Wedding Paper Divas for wedding invitations, Chronicle Books for home office products, Hygge & West for wallpaper, and Winter Water Factory for baby clothing, showing them the kinds of products we could create together and how my style was complementary to their brands without being too similar to things they already produced.

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After being in business on my own for five years, I'd learned so much—both from what I had accomplished and from the mistakes I had made—that I wanted to share those things with others. Meg Mateo Ilasco had written Craft, Inc. and Chronicle Books (the publisher) was interested in expanding the series. So Meg approached me about co-writing a book, and I suggested we pitch a freelancing book. The pitch was accepted and Creative, Inc. came out in 2010. Then I realized I wanted to share all the things that new bloggers want to know about and write Blog, Inc., which was published in 2012. Both of those books were so fulfilling for me because they are the books I wish I'd had when I was starting out—so if I can help people in some way through what I've learned, then writing them was totally worth it.

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In 2012, I decided to change up my business. I had Ruby at the end of 2011 and I couldn't continue to do all the things I was doing before. I stopped taking on graphic design work for clients and instead chose to focus on the work that I could schedule in on my time. I decided to go back to blogging on my own, sharing more of my own photos, and to change the way I work with sponsors. While banner ads were the main way that my blog previously made money, I wanted to focus on more creating more meaningful new content for my readers in collaboration with brands. I began approaching and pitching to brands and got help from an ad network, and now, when opportunities come my way, I make sure to only work with brands I really love on stories and ideas that make sense to me.

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All of this has led to where I am now. I set some big goals for myself at the beginning of this year. I want to expand into more Oh Joy licensed products and make people happy through my designs and my work. I want to continue to tell stories through my blog with pictures, but also with video, as well. I spent the first half of the year taking steps to make those things come true, and now I am in the process of launching a bunch of new products for next year, and creating new ideas for videos to share with all of you.

In Part 2 of "The Art of Being a Goal-Getter", I'm going to share with you my five tips on implementing goal-getting in your own life…

{Top photo by Bonnie Tsang, Illustrations by Jennifer Vallez

123 comments

  1. Hi Joy!
    First off, would just love to say that I loveee your blog! I’m constantly visiting for inspiration and this post has definitely spoke to me at the right time! I am currently living in NYC as a graphic designer, looking to transition into textile/pattern design. Reading about your journey really inspired me and gave me some insight on my own path as well. Love your designs and thanks for being such a constant inspiration!! 🙂

  2. Oh Joy, what an inspiring story. An amazing post – congratulations on your success and hard work.
    You have been a true inspiration and I love every part of your blog and products. They are colorful, simple and so creative. I am really looking forward to more of everything by Oh Joy 🙂 Thank you once again for sharing your journey with us and wish you all the best for your future endeavors!!

  3. I never had the illusion that successful people were just lucky (though I do think being famous does help get your foot in the door…but even then, usually you still have to kick it open yourself), rather, I admire their (seeming) momentum to just go, go, go and overstep any oncoming obstacles. I myself have moments of workaholism but often I find myself bogged down by failures–or rather, lack of positive feedback–that makes me second-guess myself. I’d love to know how to keep that feeling that I do have something unique to offer to the world (no matter the setbacks) and lose the self-consciousness so that I could fearlessly become my own spokesperson.

  4. Hi Joy,
    A beautifully written post! I love what you say, and how true it is in principle. Love your blog and always checking from time to time to be inspired.
    Your goals, combined with the passion, dedication and hard work is what has gotten you are where you are today.
    I have your book, Blog Inc. and refer to it when I need to!
    Thanks for this post.

  5. My, my , my… it’s such a hard step, but a necessary one! I’ve had lots of problems on this topic and reading this entry truly makes me want to see everything in perspective and set some goals of my own. Thanks so much for sharing. Can’t wait to read the 2nd part.

  6. Thanks so much for sharing this, Joy! I love hearing about bloggers starting out, and it’s a good reminder that if you work hard, have good ideas, and keep it up, anything can happen! It’s so fun to hear how people’s winding-road stories get them to where they are today. Congrats on all your accomplishments!

  7. Oh Joy, you truly are an inspiration and so incredibly kind to share with us. Thank you 🙂

  8. I love this post! Just what I needed. I’m really afraid of being out there and showing my things, but if I don’t, nothing will happen. I’m excited now to pursue my dreams. Thank you!

  9. What an INVALUABLE post! I am so thrilled that you’ve selflessly offered to post this and it is so insightful to see a portion of your career path through your several endeavors. My eyes were glued to the screen from the caption on your photo Joy. Thank you for encouraging all of us by sharing the tidbits of wisdom you’ve accrued over the years. Personally, this series is coming at a perfect time for me and I am thankful for the info! Great job Joy!

  10. Hi Joy, long time reader and fellow Philadelphian, infrequent commenter. I think this is a great message particularly to share with young creative people (high schoolers, etc) – I wonder if you have thought about doing so. I don’t think you hear in a concrete and relatable way enough, when you’re young, that creative pursuits take a lot of hard work, drive and business sense. I for one didn’t realize as a kid that I was supposed to be a goal getter to be an artist and not just to become a doctor or lawyer. #daydreamer
    Much congrats on your success and thanks for bringing me a small bit of joy through your blog to my office day to day.
    [link to husband, the artist between us]

  11. Thank you for this post! I love hearing these kinds of stories, they give me so much hope. I’m always interested in people whose paths aren’t 100% straight forward. I studied Political Science because I loved the subject, but once I was done with school I realized that it wasn’t right for me career-wise. Still not sure where I’m headed, but I’m not too worried about it. One step at a time.

  12. I’m so glad you wrote this post. Your work is such an inspiration to me, and it is always nice to know how you, and other successful creatives like you got to where you are today. Knowing your story somehow makes my dream seem like a more tangible reality. Thank you for that.

  13. This is such an interesting and inspiring read. You’ve done so many amazing things! Really looking forward to part 2, and I will certainly hope to use your tips over the next year or so as I’m planning a big career change! Thank you!

  14. Joy – I absolutely loved your keynote speech at Alt. Thank you for sharing it again on your blog for easy reference and inspiration. I love how you set your sites on something and you do whatever it takes to get it. Kudos!

  15. Thanks so much for sharing! It’s great to read about where you started and where you are now! Can’t wait for another Oh Joy! event soon!

  16. Joy–this is such an amazing and inspiring post. It’s heartwarming to read about your entrepreneurial spirit and the successes you’ve gotten by being pro-active on your own behalf! Thanks for yet another great post–looking forward to Part 2. Oh and how cute are the little illustrations for each section! <3 <3 <3

  17. Joy, you are such an inspiration to so many of your readers. I am so grateful for all the advice you’ve given me as a reader as well as one-on-one. Your line about people being “really lucky” resonated with me. After I debuted at NSS and got loads of press, I kept telling people it was luck. Then one day a friend said something that made me realize it wasn’t luck at all. It was a reward for all the hard work and planning I had put into it. It was a lot of planning, and a lot of strategizing, but I had my eye on the prize. Nobody is given a silver platter with their life mapped out for success. Can’t wait to hear what you have in store your new products. You’ve worked hard to achieve your goals and deserve all the success you’ve had. Kudos!

  18. It’s so great to hear about some of the nitty-gritty that you’ve worked through and on to get where you are now. Your story is so inspiring, and the timing is great. I’m currently working on how I can get closer to my dreams by starting small now. Thanks so much for publishing these posts!

  19. I needed this right now. Thank you! I love that you spoke a little about your setbacks as well – we all have them, so it’s lovely to see the good that comes after!

  20. I loved hearing about your process and the illustrations are darling as well! I’ve really enjoyed the refocus across the past year on only your own content, even though it’s still collaborative in nature. I’d love to hear more about your pitch process (if you’re taking requests)and looking forward to the next installation…

  21. This is so terrific to read! As a young person myself it’s reassuring to know you don’t have to have it all figured out – it’s more of a journey than anything. Do you still live in Philadelphia?

  22. Thank you so much for sharing! I am constantly inspired by the openness that can be found in the blogging community and you’re the leader of the pack! (Tanya @ the-wonderist.com)

  23. Such great advice, Joy. I think a lot of people take a back seat to their success, hoping that it will just fall in their lap and that’s just not the case for the majority of us. I know I need to practice asking for things that I want more. Thanks for your thoughtful post!
    xoxo,
    Jules of Canines & Couture

  24. Thanks for sharing your journey Joy! This is incredibly inspirational. I’ve been thinking more & more about licensing, so the part about moving away from production and into this sector really hit home. Looking forward to reading part 2.

  25. Thank you so much Joy for being such an amazing inspiration as a creative business woman, young mom and all with style and grace. Everytime I read your blog you inspire me to go for my own goals and dreams! Rock on!

  26. Thank you for taking the time to share your story, it’s quite interesting and sounds like your career growth and progress has happened so naturally and organically. Can’t wait to read part 2 – you really are such a creative inspiration, Joy – thank you!

  27. I love reading your blog and this post is especially enjoyable. It’s really an inspiration to read about your success. Thank you for sharing your story and tips. 🙂 I can’t wait till your part 2.

  28. Thank you (always) for sharing your story! As a fellow creative trying to tie passions to profit, it’s incredibly inspiring to learn about the ways real, successful, working women have done just that.

  29. Joy – Thank you for writing this post. It meant a lot to see how your dreams + experience grew over time. It’s really easy for me to assume that other people got where they are overnight and feel like I’m moving my career forward too slowly. This was hugely encouraging to read. Thank you!

  30. This was a truly inspiring post. Thank you for sharing– your sincerity and creativity always comes through on your blog which is one of the reasons I have been reading it for the last five years. We just bought your floral wallpaper from Hygge and West for our dining room. My husband, who has typically masculine taste, loves the black and white graphic look and was the one who really pushed for it :).

  31. This is such an inspiring post Joy! Thank you for sharing your experiences with us! I love your illustrations too, by the way!

  32. Joy, I love your book and your are just one HUGE inspiration. Ive been so impressed with you since I first met you on your book tour in Emeryville!! I loved how you asked not just me but anyone you met what their name was. You are incredible personable and you worked hard to be where you’re at. Im just a “personal” blogger and wanted to give up blogging until I got your book! Seriously, Thank you! Keep up the great work! xo

  33. Thanks for sharing! Incredibly inspiring and so much fun to hear the behind-the-scenes of how you’ve worked to create the life that you want.

  34. Oh! Love this post! Will have my daughter read it too, she’s so creative & have a wondering spirit. This will be super awesome for her (and me) to focus on goal getting!! Beautiful journey you have been through. Can’t wait to read more. We have all the Inc. books and love going back to them for inspiration. Thanks for always sharing! Hugs!

  35. Well I thoroughly enjoyed that post!
    It’s interesting (and cute!) to see how far you’ve come and what you’ve done. Impressive resume!

  36. How inspiring! This is my favorite post, by far. Thanks so much for sharing. I look forward to reading your blog everyday 🙂

  37. You’re such an inspiration! I loved hearing your story! I also graduated with a degree in Communication Design from Kutztown University in Pennsylvania. And am currently working as a graphic designer for Crayola in Easton, PA. Does Ruby need any crayons?! Haha! Been there for over 7 years now. Sheesh! Time flies when you’re having fun!
    I always look forward to reading your posts everyday! Keep up the amazing work, Joy! 🙂

  38. I have read every word of this post and must applaud you for going after your vision. Wow, I am so impressed that you went after what you wanted, and if it didn’t work out, you chose another path.
    I have your book, and it has helped me as I struggle along to find my voice in the blogging world. Thanks Joy, for helping us to realize our own dreams!!

  39. Reading your story is so inspiring! I can’t explain the feeling it gives me except pure excitement and motivation to set and pursue our own goals. It has been easy for the motivation to dissipate this year as we are just at the beginning of trying to start something big for ourselves. Sometimes we feel that we are doing it alone. But hearing from you that it is possible to achieve these huge goals is what we need. Thanks for being willing to share your short biography. You are truly an incredible and inspiring woman!

  40. Reading your story is so inspiring! I can’t explain the feeling it gives me except pure excitement and motivation to set and pursue our own goals. It has been easy for the motivation to dissipate this year as we are just at the beginning of trying to start something big for ourselves. Sometimes we feel that we are doing it alone. But hearing from you that it is possible to achieve these huge goals is what we need. Thanks for being willing to share your short biography. You are truly an incredible and inspiring woman!

  41. Reading your story is so inspiring! I can’t explain the feeling it gives me except pure excitement and motivation to set and pursue our own goals. It has been easy for the motivation to dissipate this year as we are just at the beginning of trying to start something big for ourselves. Sometimes we feel that we are doing it alone. But hearing from you that it is possible to achieve these huge goals is what we need. Thanks for being willing to share your short biography. You are truly an incredible and inspiring woman!

  42. Reading your story is so inspiring! I can’t explain the feeling it gives me except pure excitement and motivation to set and pursue our own goals. It has been easy for the motivation to dissipate this year as we are just at the beginning of trying to start something big for ourselves. Sometimes we feel that we are doing it alone. But hearing from you that it is possible to achieve these huge goals is what we need. Thanks for being willing to share your short biography. You are truly an incredible and inspiring woman!

  43. Reading your story is so inspiring! I can’t explain the feeling it gives me except pure excitement and motivation to set and pursue our own goals. It has been easy for the motivation to dissipate this year as we are just at the beginning of trying to start something big for ourselves. Sometimes we feel that we are doing it alone. But hearing from you that it is possible to achieve these huge goals is what we need. Thanks for being willing to share your short biography. You are truly an incredible and inspiring woman!

  44. Reading your story is so inspiring! I can’t explain the feeling it gives me except pure excitement and motivation to set and pursue our own goals. It has been easy for the motivation to dissipate this year as we are just at the beginning of trying to start something big for ourselves. Sometimes we feel that we are doing it alone. But hearing from you that it is possible to achieve these huge goals is what we need. Thanks for being willing to share your short biography. You are truly an incredible and inspiring woman!

  45. Reading your story is so inspiring! I can’t explain the feeling it gives me except pure excitement and motivation to set and pursue our own goals. It has been easy for the motivation to dissipate this year as we are just at the beginning of trying to start something big for ourselves. Sometimes we feel that we are doing it alone. But hearing from you that it is possible to achieve these huge goals is what we need. Thanks for being willing to share your short biography. You are truly an incredible and inspiring woman!

  46. Reading your story is so inspiring! I can’t explain the feeling it gives me except pure excitement and motivation to set and pursue our own goals. It has been easy for the motivation to dissipate this year as we are just at the beginning of trying to start something big for ourselves. Sometimes we feel that we are doing it alone. But hearing from you that it is possible to achieve these huge goals is what we need. Thanks for being willing to share your short biography. You are truly an incredible and inspiring woman!

  47. Reading your story is so inspiring! I can’t explain the feeling it gives me except pure excitement and motivation to set and pursue our own goals. It has been easy for the motivation to dissipate this year as we are just at the beginning of trying to start something big for ourselves. Sometimes we feel that we are doing it alone. But hearing from you that it is possible to achieve these huge goals is what we need. Thanks for being willing to share your short biography. You are truly an incredible and inspiring woman!

  48. Reading your story is so inspiring! I can’t explain the feeling it gives me except pure excitement and motivation to set and pursue our own goals. It has been easy for the motivation to dissipate this year as we are just at the beginning of trying to start something big for ourselves. Sometimes we feel that we are doing it alone. But hearing from you that it is possible to achieve these huge goals is what we need. Thanks for being willing to share your short biography. You are truly an incredible and inspiring woman!

  49. Hello, this is your proverbial “I love your blog but have never been compelled to comment until now” comment. I have followed your blog for a few years and just adore your style. I love learning about how you started. Very inspiring. Now I have to buy your book!

  50. I really loved this post. I was having a very down day. Have had some disappointing news on the career front. But reading that you faced similar disappointment has just reminded me to stay true to myself and keep going after my dreams…

  51. Your story really proves that working hard and never giving up can give great results in life.
    You are such an inspiration, Joy ♥

  52. This is so inspiring. It ‘s really put HOPE in people who are struggling and confused about their passion or job situation. Nothing beats a real life example!

  53. Hello Joy, thank you for this amazing post it was really inspiring. And also love your books! The concept behind your post is a very good start for another book!!

  54. What an inspiration you are, Joy…..and I love that you’ve added the title of “mama” to the many hats you wear. Not because every woman needs to have kiddos, of course, but because I think it’s important for mommies to know that they can still do all these wonderfully creative things and have their child ight by their side.
    Can’t wait for the next installment!
    Thanks for always inspiring.

  55. Thank you so much for continuing to share your journey with us. It is so inspiring to hear how others make their dreams a reality and your story is pretty darn incredible. Looking forward to Part 2!

  56. this was such an inspiring read, thanks for sharing your story, Joy! Lots of hard work and passion does pay off – Congrats and here’s to the future!

  57. Joy, I loved this post. Like you I’m a freelance designer/art director, and I learned early on that no one is going to hand you the perfect job: you have to create it for yourself. And sometimes being ambitious can also be a curse (there’s always so much to do!), but there’s nothing like creating your own path. Thanks for sharing yours 🙂

  58. Joy,
    Hi! Thank you for sharing this story and I look forward to part 2. It was refreshing to see how you set goals, worked hard, learned, and moved toward new goals. Life really is a moving target and it is so easy to get comfortable and stay in one place.
    Cheers,
    Marie

  59. Joy, this is great. I totally agree with you….you’re an inspiration to business owners that want to evolve & thrive. Well done you!

  60. Joy – this is a beautifully written and very eloquent depiction of your journey – I love it. You’ve interwoven the little lessons learned along your journey and pulled through the challenges that really pushed your self-made career further. Kudos! Can’t wait for the next installment!

  61. I love this. It couldn’t have come at a better time. I absolutely love hearing the journey of those I truly admiring and look up to. Thanks 🙂

  62. this is really inspiring, Joy! I personally love goals and really believe in having to go after the things you want. Your success has really inspired me. Now I’m off to check out those books…

  63. This is amazing!! How encouraging and inspiring to see your path…The unique steps that took you to where you are right now – Thank you for taking the time to paint the picture of your hard earned success..I look forward to sharing this post with many!

  64. Joy,
    Thank you so much for sharing this! You are incredibly inspiring, and just as I am feeling lost at a dead-end design firm, you have shown me that it is possible to grow and actually like your job – something I haven’t felt in years. You are amazing!

  65. Joy,
    You are an inspiration to me. I am just barely getting started on my blog and I certainly don’t have your design background, but I love to write. Your story shows how you should follow your dreams, no matter how zig-zag the path may be. I think you are an amazing woman and I appreciate you sharing your art with the world. It’s my daily dose of happiness.
    I hope one day to dedicate more time to my writing, but I will start thinking of goals to get myself there.
    Thank you!

  66. Holy wow Joy! You know when you’re having one.of.those.days and you’re asking for a little sign somewhere, ANYWHERE that will encourage you to hang on? Okay, that’s what this was for me today. And for that, a big thank you. This is why we all keep coming back for more.

  67. Thank you so much for writing this post. It’s inspiring and invigorating as an early entrepreneur. I follow your blog as often as I can and have always been very impressed with your beautiful work. Your story gives me hope for the future!

  68. You are such an inspiration!! I watched your office hours on Levo League and can’t wait to buy your book Blog, Inc. Thank you for sharing your story!

  69. Thanks for this post! Your dreams and experience are quite similar to my own goals. It’s so great to see how doing something you love can inspire others and make them happy. Thanks for all the advice and inspiration!

  70. Joy – This was such a great post, so inspiring. I love reading about your journey and life experiences and how you are such a go-getter. Congrats on your all your successes in your professional and personal life – Ruby is adorable!! It’s a great reminder that if you really want something, you need to go out there and try to obtain it for yourself v. waiting for it to just land on your doorstep. Thank you! 🙂

  71. Joy, I just stumbled on your blog & immediately added you to my Bloglovin feed. LOVED this & the part 2 post. I’m slowly taking steps I feel like will propel a different direction in my career that include paying off all debt that I reasonably can right now (credit cards, car note, etc.)I think I always knew that I wasn’t destined for a normal 9-5 desk job and have been struggling to find a balance of 1,2, or sometimes 3 jobs at once for the past few years and have finally [recently] decided that this is the year to make changes. I’m so excited I found your blog & just ordered your 2 books about freelancing & blogging.. Amazon Prime will be dropping those babies off on my door early next week & I can’t wait!

  72. When you started freelancing, how did you find clients? I would LOVE to quit my day job designing stationery for a small boutique, but I don’t know where to start when it comes to getting people to hire me! Great post! Thanks!

  73. What a great journey. Also, inspiring for anyone starting on their own.
    I admire your energy ( you are definitely a natural entrepreneur) and hard work. Keep going!

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