The only constant is change.

And yes, I’m completely aware that I’m gettting old and yet I really like myself right now.

Tomorrow isn’t promised to us so we have to live it up, meaning we have to do the things we want to do NOW or at least try…because if you died today, will you have any regrets?

The word enterprise comes to mind. It means:

a project undertaken or to be undertaken, especially one that is important or difficult or that requires boldness or energy

So yes, I’ve proven to myself that I can build up a business from scratch.

The question is: can I do it again? And can I take it up a notch?

All we can do is experiment. Life is just that, one big experiment.

I am a magical entrepreneur guided by a higher power…

and I am one with the power that created me.

I get a lot of people following/unfollowing me daily on my crystal shop’s Instagram page. The number of followers hasn’t really grown that much. But that’s alright because I still get sales.

At first, I did get hung up about it. Like why do people play the stupid ‘follow to unfollow’ game? It really annoyed the fuck outta me.

Anyways, I realized after a year that it didn’t actually matter…I still made sales.

Moral of the story? Just because you have more Instagram followers doesn’t necessarily mean you get more sales.

I’m writing this because maybe some of you are feeling discouraged or feel like you’re not gaining any traction on selling or putting yourself or your brand out there. It’s crowded, everyone’s doing the same damn thing, people steal content, I have to show my face when I don’t really want to, blah blah blah…

It’s definitely going to feel that way sometimes, especially when you’re just starting out.

But with consistency, patience and most importantly – using your own unique voice & perspective – you WILL sell and you WILL attract the right people. And all your hangups about other people doing the same thing will melt away.

Not as easy as it sounds, but if you intend for things to be a certain way – trust that it can happen.

And as cliché as it already sounds – you really HAVE to believe in yourself. You have to be your own fucking number 1 fan. Your negative self-talk will only hold you back.

You also have to stop looking at what other people are doing. I swear, as soon as I stopped doing this – my creativity came back; my writing and my art sounded like me again.

I’m a life coach now by the way. Kidding!?

I’m writing this to encourage you and myself. I have more confidence now that I’ve had the business up and running for a little over a year. So while I have some nuggets of wisdom to share, I’m also aware that I still have a long way to go.

Either way, I’m not worried about it. I intend to have fun and go at my pace.

I see a lot of people start their shop pages on Instagram but don’t really last longer than a month. Why? Because I think they run out of steam. They tend to post a lot hoping people will notice them and start buying right away, but then they burn out just as quickly as they started.

Consistency and repetition is key. But also, pace yourself so you don’t crash and burn. Self-care is just as important.

One of my mentors was telling me you should post 3 times a day on Instagram. I followed that at first, but got tired. So now I only post once or twice a day, depending on how I feel.

What most people don’t think about is that while even starting a small business can be a lot of fun, it’s also A LOT of work. You are the owner, marketer, manager, accountant and more…all rolled into one. You can easily go through a roller coaster of emotions too – from being happy and excited because you made some sales, to being scared and anxious because you spent a lot of money to make those sales, then happy and excited all over again because you paid down some of your debt. Yay!

That is the reality of a lot of small businesses & entrepreneurs – spending money to make money.

Would I do it all over again? Probably.

The secret is to only sell what you love, what you yourself would buy. I guess in some ways this is difficult because you’ll be tempted to keep a lot of the stuff you’re supposed to sell!

The other secret is to branch out and learn other skills so you can stand out from everybody else who sells the same thing as you.

Here’s a personal example: I don’t consider myself to be a seller or come anything close to being a salesperson; I am so anti-hustle. Not into it at all. But on the contrary, I AM selling, consistently.

How am I doing it? I honestly couldn’t tell you.

Either people really love the crystals that they see on my Instagram, or they like me as a person. They could be basing it off the reviews I have on Etsy.

It could be all of the above or none of the above.

Behind this human avatar, I could really be a fucking magical being – creating whatever I want to happen next. That sounds feasible to me.

Whatever it is, the effort is paying off – that doesn’t mean I’m done. I have to continue, because I love that I created this; and I love that people love it too.

And I also know that you can do this for yourself too.?

p.s. hope you enjoy the photo I posted with this post! My mom’s church friends already think I worship the devil anyway.???‍♀️?

So I came across a very unique keyword phrase on AdWords that I saw for the very first time ever:

“black owned healing crystals”

I’m guessing that my crystal shop website popped up when a person entered in that particular phrase. Very interesting, indeed.

Very interesting because I have tried to stay neutral in such matters; like not really identifying as a minority or a person of color – even though technically I am. I wasn’t avoiding it, I’m just not into labeling myself. I truly believe that we are all One Spirit but in this three dimensional world, I get that we have to ‘play the game’ still.

I also know that some of the people I follow on Instagram do use certain hashtags like #minority #blackowned #supportblackownedbusiness etc…

I guess what I’m trying to say is that I don’t know where I fit in and I don’t care. I wasn’t trying to define myself as either or. When you’re Filipino or Asian for that matter, most people don’t really see you. They mostly see black or white people, with Latinos a close third.

This is just my opinion, perhaps I am wrong on that so feel free to correct me.

We fall in that gray area I think where people know we exist but it’s almost like we’re just “there”. Is it because most people perceive us as quiet and not a huge threat to society? Who knows.

I imagine it’s much worse for Native Americans; nobody cared too much about their issues until Standing Rock made headlines.

Sigh, annnnd I don’t know what I’m getting at now. I don’t want to talk about political/social issues on my blog, there’s enough of that to go around.

I’m still anticipating that people would like Metaphysical Vibes because of the beautiful minerals and the content I post, not so much about the color of my skin. But I also get why people would want to support minority small business, we definitely need more diversity and inclusion in every market. If that is what’s going to bring me business, so be it. I’m open to whatever the universe wants to give me, I know I am blessed either way.

Do I consider myself an ally of black people? YES! And not just black people, but every being.

So if you like crystals and prefer to support a minority then yes, I am one. You can buy crystals and stones at Metaphysical Vibes.??

It just dawned on me as to why I haven’t been posting consistently on Instagram for Metaphysical Vibes…social media feels whatever to me right now; it’s safe to say that I can live without it (I probably can’t). I don’t have FOMO either (liar). Ha! I do wish some people would try being mysterious for once and not post everything that they do; maybe we’d have something to talk about in real life? I don’t know, just a thought…

Unfortunately I can’t escape it entirely as it’s still a major part of my job.

Anyways…

In numerology it’s the year of the High Priestess in Tarot – add the numbers 2018 (2 + 0 + 1 + 8 = 1+1 = 2).

Last year 2017 was the year of the Magician; it makes total sense as to why I got inspired and was consciously making action-oriented moves with the crystal business.

The High Priestess to me is all about introspection, self-knowledge, deep inner wisdom but also isolation. Lately I’ve been just wanting to be alone; I mentioned in my last blog post that I don’t mind it at all. I love being alone and learning things about myself.

I also noticed that although I haven’t been posting a whole lot I’m still making sales. That is nice and I appreciate it. With all the people who are constantly hustling, pushing minerals on Instagram it feels nice that I don’t have to work so hard to “sell”, I don’t have to struggle or compete to be constantly in people’s feeds. The crystals and the reviews people have left me are doing the work for me; I didn’t even have to ask anybody to leave me a review – each person did it because they wanted to. I am so thankful that my selling/small business experience is matching my personal energy; I kept thinking that my introvertedness (sometimes ambivert, occasional extrovert) would ruin my chances of selling anything.

I’m also thankful that I can express my creativity through Metaphysical Vibes.

Cheers to everyone who is working on breaking free from their jobs. I haven’t fully done it, but I’m making my way towards it; at the pace that I’m comfortable with.

Call me a part time business owner for now I guess.

I don’t have much time these days to be having more than 3 Instagram accounts, even the last one isn’t getting a whole lot of love these days. That’s ok though as I see my cat everyday when I get home from work.?

I posted this from my LA Insta Promo account that I’m about to delete. The Twitter account will stay for the time being and even that I really don’t have time for.

So I’m just posting this here for those who are looking for me on social media. I know I’m sort of elusive and hard to find. I liked it that way for many years; it has been like that for a while for me – jumping from alias to alias but now I’m really trying to stick around these days.⚡️?⚡️

Selling stuff online is a new venture for me. Some people are really good at it, while others (like me) might be off to a slow start.

It’s better to be honest about where you’re at currently, and right now things are going a bit slow – I don’t have a huge social media following and I rarely show my face. This might not be the case for everyone, but I think people tend to buy from a seller when they show their face or have built up some kind of online reputation over the years…

I have neither of those things and so I have to start from scratch. Maybe you are on the same boat as me? Well then, keep reading.

So how does one go about selling online if you’re not popular online?

There are a few ways to do this, but one of the ways requires spending money. I already know what you’re thinking – boo, hiss, groan!! I feel your pain – why should you spend money if no money is even coming in yet??

But understand this concept – in order to make money, you also have to spend it. Think of it as an investment.

In order to make money, you also have to spend it.

Business owners understand this concept very well, and I am learning this too. Startup costs like purchasing inventory or product to sell, hosting and domain for your online store, shipping materials, etc. If you’ll be selling at a local flea market you’ll be paying to be there and you’ll also have to rent or purchase a tent, chairs, tables and whatever items you might need to make your tent or table look appealing to potential buyers.

So you see, EVERYTHING costs money. But if you see it as an exchange for the things you want (because in reality that IS what it is), you won’t feel like you’re ‘losing’ money or that you’re always broke. No money is ever lost – instead you gained things, things that you’ve been wanting. It’s a constant exchange and nothing more.

The other less expensive way is to just keep on trucking through posting on social media, seo and blogging. This is the nature of things, where not everything can happen right away because you want them to. You have to build up your reputation and following by being active on social media consistently and not just when you feel like it. You also have to post really good content on your blog so it can be found on Google.

So in short, you have to experiment with all three of these things: paid advertising, blogging and social media.

One of the main requirements to selling online is patience. You’re planting a seed right now, so don’t expect it to sprout right now too!

I’m writing this because these are the things that I’m currently experiencing; in April 2017 I was so excited and full of fire to setup everything – the website, getting a seller’s permit & business tax license; those were not easy feats. The month of May was great because my good friend who is a herbalist invited me to have a table at a yoga studio for a small artisan faire – and I actually sold some stuff! Now it’s June and although I made a sale, I’m experiencing a little bit of a slump.

So I’m writing this to my future self – everything goes in cycles and you have to keep going with this. Be persistent, don’t give up and you will eventually see the fruits of your labor. You put in a lot of work already, don’t succumb to just being lazy and letting Etsy, Ebay or Amazon take a cut from your profits. You are technical, creative and motivated. You can see this through and you will still be here a year from now.

Here are the crystals & stones I’m currently working with to help me achieve my business goals – natural Citrine, Green Aventurine, Moss Agate & heat treated Citrine. Added Pyrite to the mix as well.

Update 11/27/18:
It’s been a year and a half since I wrote this blog post. My online crystal shop, Metaphysical Vibes is still up and running. I have experimented with Google AdWords and Facebook ads; though both are great I feel as if Google AdWords is slightly better as it brings actual buyers.

I have made some sales on the website, but it’s inconsistent as most people still go to my Etsy. It’s going to take some time before people start shopping on my website on a regular basis.

Like I said, remain consistent. This stuff takes time and it’s not a ‘get rich quick’ kind of scheme.

I didn’t always consider myself a marketer…

ask me 6 years ago and I would’ve said “ugh”, “gross”, and “no fucking way”!!?

As a matter of fact, I HATED it and didn’t want anything to do with it. I hated commercials or anyone who promoted themselves wayyyyy too much.

At one point I was forced to participate in meetings, meetings that had nothing to do with me. Most of the time I just ended up doodling or wandering off into the astral plane or both.☁️

So how did I go from hating marketing to loving it?

Easy, with repetition.

If you create graphics for advertising and promotions on a daily basis like I do, you start to realize that marketing is heavily involved in everything you do. It is not a separate thing, but a symbiotic relationship.

Why is that?

Because you’re thinking about ways to execute something visually when you’re combining text with images, then posting it to social media or getting it printed.

Not only that, but you’re also thinking about the best way to say it; your copy and your taglines. Small businesses might not have the luxury of having a copywriter, so it might fall on the designer or the owner to come up with something. Should it come straight from your creative & genius brain raw & unfiltered, or simplified so that others can actually understand your message and take action?

You’re also thinking about your audience – friends, clients, potential customers and clients who might see it.

When you’re posting on social media – whether it’s a painting, something you cooked or baked, your writing, your designs, a video demonstrating what it is you do, etc…you’re showing off your skills through something you created and the potential to provide something of value to others.

All of that IS marketing.

And everyone who promotes something of theirs is actively doing it, whether they’re aware of it or not.

And going back to the concept of repetition – I finally understood that in order for people to know about you, you have to REPEAT yourself and constantly let people know about you.

Marketing has become part of my job due to the fact that workplaces have been shrinking for some time now. Most companies don’t want to hire and pay a person for marketing, and then another for SEO, and then another for web design, graphics, etc…

so without even having a clue that this would be my future, I started to learn how to do a little bit of everything and it has paid off. I’ve learned a lot and am still learning. And I don’t get bored.

But don’t think you have to do it my way; I only did it this way because it seems to work for me. I find that learning and focusing on one subject doesn’t work for me; it seems that halfway through I get bored and disinterested. And so I jump on to other things…

and another, and another.

and then I end up learning a little bit of everything.

Another reason why I know a little bit of everything?

Usually someone will ask me a question and even though I don’t know the answer, they’re kind of expecting me to have an answer or a solution. So I start to Google a bunch of shit just to know what it is they’re asking of me.

And now I just learned something else; I can add that to my knowledge bank and share it with someone who needs it.

So there you have it, one of the ways a person gets into marketing.

Most people hop on Twitter because they have something to say, something to promote, or both.

I didn’t get into Twitter until 2014; (pretty late, I am aware of this). Although we were already using it at the job I had at the time, (Twitter is really the only legit place where people who work in the adult entertainment industry can promote and post their content), I just couldn’t get into it.

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