hi, i'm Ali
Photographer, dog mom, daily walker, reader, and wife to a busy maker. I'm the voice you hear and read at Life Outside the Shop.
From new project how-to's and DIY home updates to the ins-and-outs of building a family & multiple businesses, Life Outside the Shop shares what is really looks like to figure it out as you go.
“I think I just need to write about it”.
These were the words that finally came out of my mouth – out loud, by myself (well, with a sleeping dog in my lap), sitting in bed, feeling slightly like a crazy person.
The second I said them, I took a deep breath out and at least STARTED to relax. I feel like I’ve been holding my breath for the last week.
I’ve been rereading healthythankyoumoreplease posts and looking at my old website as I decide if I want to renew it. It was so much (amazing, rewarding, always-learning) work and it is SCARY to consider it just going away.
(To be fair, it won’t actually go away. It will still be alive somewhere on the internet where I can grab it again if I want it.)
(I also love the name healthythankyoumoreplease and don’t want THAT to go away. But, that is my own issue and creative hurdle to figure out. I’ll definitely be holding onto the domain name.)
I’m constantly thinking things like “did I do the right thing by shifting gears to Life Outside The Shop?” and “should I just do both?” and “no way I’d drownnnnnn” and “but people seemed to connect with that so much more” and “but it didn’t feel QUITE right for me” and “but what if this doesn’t feel quite right either?”
But here is the thing, this does feel quite right. It just doesn’t feel completely successful or fleshed out yet. THAT is a scary AF feeling when healthythankyoumoreplease DID feel successful and had a much clearer direction and purpose.
I mean, “here I am talking about health and nutrition” is way more straightforward than “here I am talking about the things I’m passionate about which may include health and nutrition but also includes DIY projects, relationship stuff, and probably definitely my dog”.
All the pros say “I blew up when I niched down and got specific” and this makes sense – when people know what they’re getting from you, they’re more likely to come back when they need that thing you share.
They also say “what do people ask you about most” or “what do people respond to” and the tough thing is, I get questions all the time about my latest Trader Joe’s haul but I also get questions about DIY stuff on the reg!
So, what if I don’t want to get specific? What if there are a million other people like me out there who have different interests and many things to share?
What if people come to me for the nutrition but find that they also love the DIY randomness that we get up to over here? What if the opposite is true and someone who is into DIY is inspired to get after their health?
What about genuinely showing who I am, who we are, and what a REAL, messy, figuring-it-out-as-we-go life looks like?
I mean, I bet there are tons of girls out there like me and couples out there like Sam and I. Growing business, growing passions in different places, and enjoying all sorts of things along the way. Trying hard, failing harder, and doing the best we can?
Gosh, what if I want to share learnings about building a business since we’re REAL new at it too? Just throw that on the pile… why not?
…And here is another picture of my dog.
I guess the pros ALSO say that they spent the first few years of blogging a bit more all over the place, figuring out what direction to go in. And I guess that brings some comfort since that is where I am.
But, I think in a world that is telling us we have to be ONE thing to be successful, I want to be the person who says “wait, that doesn’t have to be true”.
In a world filled with so many opinions on the “best” way to market, grow, and thrive, it can be REALLY overwhelming to try to figure out what will actually work.
So, I guess that is why I feel like I’ve been holding my breath. I feel like I’m stuck AND have a million ideas all at once.
I feel like every time I try to learn, I just end up comparing myself to the success of others, feeling like I made a huge mistake, getting frustrated, putting down the book, or turning off the podcast.
So, this is a recommitment to Life Outside the Shop and why I made the switch.
It is a recommitment to showing up as I am and letting go of the pressure to be “successful” so I do SOMETHING instead of doing NOTHING in fear of doing it wrong.
It is a recommitment to quit the comparison (okay, that is unrealistic but at least not let it shut me down) and instead, think about everything I learn as an opportunity to grow, not a way I’ve already failed.
I hope the thing that made healthythankyoumoreplease most successful was the honesty, openness, and rawness… not necessarily the nutrition information that you could get from any ol’ google search.
So here I am (and here we are), at Life Outside the Shop, making this 2021 commitment to that same thing as I figure it out and bring you along with me!
Thank you for being here,