Episode 339: Planned Profit Loss + How To Feel Safe When Money Isn’t Flowing In

Episode 339: Planned Profit Loss + How To Feel Safe When Money Isn't Flowing In

In this episode I want to talk to you about planned profit loss and how to feel safe when money ISN’T flowing in. When it comes to the entrepreneurial world, we see so many examples of people who are doubling, tripling and quadrupling their revenue year after year – and this creates the expectation that many should always be flowing in. And that certainly hasn’t been the reality for me!

So in the episode I want to share a breakdown of my revenue growth over the years so that you can see what it looks like for the other 98% of entrepreneurs who aren’t quantum leaping. And why that’s normal and also completely safe.

Tune in as I share a breakdown of my business figures from 2018 to now – as well as why I had a period of planned profit loss in 2021 – so that you can feel emotionally safe when money isn’t flowing in, rather than freaking the hell out.

In This Episode You’ll Learn:

  • A breakdown of my business revenue and expenses from 2018 to now
  • How to tell when planned profit loss is self-sabotage versus when it’s not
  • Why I felt ashamed that my business wasn’t making more money
  • How my business savings have helped me make long-term decisions

PGSD is opening to new students on 27 July 2022:

The PGSD Process will get you out of your own way in your business and have you making more money more easily. The doors to Perfectionists Getting Shit Done will be opening at 6am New York time on 27 July and closing at 11:59pm New York time on 2 August 2022. To find out more about the program and be the first to know when the doors open, join the waitlist here: samlaurabrown.com/pgsd.

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There will be times when money isn’t flowing into your business - like when you’re still learning marketing or you’re deciding to stop selling for a strategic reason. I’m sharing what that’s looked like for me and how to feel safe when it’s happening.


Hi, and welcome to another episode of The Perfectionism Project. A podcast full of perfectionism advice for entrepreneurs. My name is Sam Laura Brown, I help entrepreneurs release their perfectionism handbrake, so they can get out of their own way and build a fulfilling and profitable business. I’m the founder of the perfectionist getting shit done group coaching program, which is otherwise known as PGSD. And for even more perfectionism advice to help you with your business, you can follow me on Instagram @perfectionismproject.

In this episode, I want to talk to you about planned profit loss and how to feel safe when money isn’t flowing in. I think when it comes to the entrepreneurial world, we see so many examples of people who are doubling, tripling, quadrupling, quantum leaping their revenue, year after year after year. And this can create the expectation that that is normal, and that we should be doing that. And therefore if we aren’t, there’s something wrong with us, we’re not cut out for business, we’re never going to make it.

And we can end up feeling a lot of shame around our business, when it’s completely unfounded. And it actually is just a result of us not having the complete information around what different business journeys look like, as well as some of the behind the scenes figures in terms of Yes, revenue, but also expenses. And also just mapping out what that can look like in terms of ebbs and flows.

And in this episode, I really just want to share that with you share some figures, share some of my experiences, so that you are able to feel emotionally safe, when the money isn’t flowing in because this is something that will help the money flow in later. And it will also help you have a much more grounded and fulfilling experience of the day to day of your business, which is incredibly important as well, if not more important than just hitting our growth goals and all of that kind of thing.

So I thought I would share with you just kind of break down from 2018 to now. And when I say now, I mean till the end of quarter 1 2022, which is sharing figures in quarters. So that’s the last full quarter they have for you to break down my revenue, expenses and profit, and also to share a bit about what was going on in the business at that time. And just to really help paint a picture of what normal business growth looks like.

And there are so many different normals. There are so many different ways this can look, this is just one of them. But for me at different times in my journey I have had shame around not making more money. And around not being as profitable as you hear a lot of online businesses, it should be at least at 50% profit. And why think that is true. Once you reach a certain point. That’s what we want to be aiming for. At the same time, especially in the earlier years or while you’re figuring out what your business model is and how to get customers and clients and all of that and you’re heavily investing in yourself.

And you’re figuring out what it looks like to build a team and all of those different things that it is going to not be the case that you will be at 50% profit or more. And that’s normal. And so again, I really do hope do normalize what it can look like to be building a successful business. And for so long, I didn’t think I had a successful business because of the story I had about what that looks like. And that it really needed to be like quantum leaping every single year in the sense that my business revenue was pretty much unrecognizable from the year before.

And I had completely undervalued and dismissed the growth that I was having personally, as an entrepreneur, also just as a human. And also in terms of the business itself, and how we were helping people and what we were offering and the evolution with that as well, that I had really told myself in so many ways that it was all about these quantum leaps in revenue. And so yeah, I hope this helps you feel safe. And I think with this topic as well, that this isn’t about, okay, it’s normal at times to not be profitable or to have low profitability, while you’re figuring things out there anything stuff and all of that.

So that’s fine and just, you know, just be patient and sit back and it’s not about that it’s really about creating emotional safety in a way that has us fully engaged with our business and with what we’re here to do not in a way that has us sit back in this patient. And I was coaching a PGSDer on this recently, as well as coaching a peer in the mastermind that I’m in about how, when it comes to being insufficiency, which is really a lot about emotional safety.

It’s not sufficiency, if that has us showing up in a way where we’re apathetic and where we are just waiting for things to happen to us, like waiting for the clients or customers to come from this viewpoint that we don’t have control over that. And we’ve thought of that and we’re just going to sit back and wait and see. When we are really in a place of sufficiency and emotional safety and feeling provided for, we are engaged, we are not hustling and burning ourselves out.

But we are problem solving, we are resilient, we are resourceful, we are inquisitive, we are curious, we are evaluating, we are reflecting. And so with all of this that I’m sharing in this episode, I want you to be paying attention when you are in a period of planned profit loss or low profitability, that you are also just paying attention to the way that you’re showing up and to just have a little alarm bell, if you are like, okay, it’s fine to be in this period. And so I’m just going to sit back and wait and see that that means you’re not actually insufficiency, which is where we want to be working towards it’s not all or nothing, that you’re either in sufficiency and abundance, or you’re in lack and scarcity.

And there’s nothing in between that. We want to be getting closer and closer and closer, step by step by step to being in sufficiency. But just noticing that, really, when we are in that sufficiency and abundance, we are leaning in, not leaning back, that’s not to say there aren’t times in our business where we will choose to take time off and decide to prioritize other things. And I’m going to be talking through that within this as well.

That’s a lot of the reason in 2021 that we weren’t selling for the second half of the year, I had a baby, I wanted to take time off the business, I intentionally decided not to be selling during that period. So there will be times where you decide it’s so important to make it an intentional decision and call it that because even with having Lydia, when I had been telling myself well I need to be making as much money as much progress as if I was working full time in the business and also on the parenting side, I need to be as fully engaged as a mother.

As if I wasn’t working in the business at all. It is obviously what do you hear it like that it just sounds crazy that I would create that standard for myself, but without being intentional about it. And that was a story that I was telling myself. And it wasn’t until late I believe it was in quarter 4 2021 that I heard this idea of planned profit loss. And that really just flicked a switch for me and really released so much shame that I had around it and really helped me be so intentional with what I was doing, which meant that quarter 1 2022 was very profitable.

And I think a lot of that was for me being able to get into a place of sufficiency instead of being in this rush and panic and pressure. And all of this to say to it’s completely normal to feel like pelletizer are all human. And even though I was feeling that way, there are a lot of things that I did do to support myself, it’s not all or nothing. Again, it’s there are going to be decisions we make that support us. Some decisions we make that don’t. There’ll be stories we tell ourselves that support us some stories we tell ourselves that don’t. I’s going to be a mix of the two. It doesn’t need to be perfect in order to for us to have a profitable fulfilling, impactful business.

So I’m going to go through as I said, from 2018 onwards, actually, I might even pull up the figures for 2017. Just quickly. I think that’s the first actually I don’t think I have the No, I’m gonna start at 2018 I’m just looking at it in my accounting software. And we only started halfway through 2017. When I incorporated putting it in 0. X E R O which is what we use to manage our accounts. When I say we I mean basically me and then I at that time hired an accountant to help with all of that.

So I haven’t got complete figures in here for 2017 though if you listen back to early episodes of the podcast like I’ve always talked about the numbers. Even as I was writing this out, I was so excited to record this episode because these are the episodes that have truly changed my business hearing other people talk about these kinds of things. And I’m also if you didn’t know, I have a commerce degree majoring in finance, I do love numbers.

And I think it’s just so empowering for us to all share numbers with each other, and it to not be this hush hush, rude thing, but instead to you know, numbers are a very important part of business, they’re like, if you’re flying a plane, they are the dashboard that are going to tell you where you’re at. And all of that kind of thing, you need to have the stats. And so yeah, I’m just going to start at 2018 and chat through it with you. So 2018, revenue was 65,000, I’m just rounding up or down, it’s rough expenses, 47,000, my salary was zero, and the profit was 18,000.

That’s like rounding up and down. So that might not sound right. But as I read it off, I’m just gonna round the numbers roughly. So in that year, I had left my part-time, No, so I’d left my full time job as an insolvency accountant the year prior. And I was working part time in the afternoons as a receptionist at a local hospital here in Brisbane. And at that time, I can’t remember exactly what I was selling. I had a few little courses, I think, Dream habit, get out of your own way, the mini version of that.

And I’m not sure exactly what else while I’m trying to do it off the top of my head, I launched my coaching services, I want to say the end of 2018. I think so at the end of 2018. So most of that revenue, I had my first 10k month in that year, so pretty much. And I think in 2018, I did a breakdown of quarter by quarter, so I won’t go into it fully here. You can scroll back through the podcast to find that. But I’m pretty sure most of the revenue was in that last quarter.

And I didn’t make much of that money in the… At definitely not the first half of the year. I really made a lot of progress with procrasti-working and say no to things that helped with that. Also doing some work on my money mindset really helped with that. And actually allowing myself to start coaching people as well, which is something that I had been putting off until I was ready for a long time because I was just really scared that once I started coaching, I’d find out maybe I’m actually not great at coaching, which I had always believed like I’d always been in the identity of that’s the kind of person I am before I even knew that coaching was a thing.

I was always in that role with friends and people in my life. So it felt very vulnerable to start doing that. So I’d put it off for a long time. So anyway, profit for that year 17,000 paid myself nothing. All of my all of the money that was being made in the business was being reinvested into programs and coaches, and also software services. At that time as well. I hired Eloisa, who is still helping me to this day with the podcast. To help with that and just take off my plate, the bits I didn’t enjoy, which was like, you know, formatting things for the show notes and formatting the episode.

So it goes out in the right places, and all those different things that I could just record, write the show notes, and then it all gets put out for me. So I first started dabbling with building a team in 2018, I started actually thinking of myself, as an entrepreneur, as a business owner in that year as well. So that was my 2018. And at that point, too, if you aren’t familiar with my story, I started my business in 2013.

So at this point, this is five years in 2013, as a blog called Smart Twenties. If you want to hear more about that side of things, think my very first episode and also episode number three, I really go into my story. And those first handful of years in business, long story short, severely in my own way, perfectionism and REG was hard on and I really started to recognize that in those years, and begin to release it using and piecing together things that I was learning from different places.

And that part like even just normalizing if you have had so it took me at least I made my first dollar from the business in 2016, about three years after I started, and even though when I started my business, I was thinking that like it might take a while to make money and all of that I didn’t have anything I was even selling. I had heard about blogging through Business podcasts that I had discovered after I’d exhausted all the TED Talks and psychology, podcasts and other things.

And so I knew that you could make money from it. It wasn’t like, you know, if you think about YouTubers who like I just love recording videos, and then you know, there was a way to monetize it that came after I knew going in, like, I didn’t have the confidence to believe I could turn it into a business. I liked working for other people, I wasn’t one of these people who’s like, I can never work for someone else, I enjoyed being an employee. And so I didn’t have this intention necessarily to have a business or the confidence.

But I did know that you could make money from doing it, because I had heard episodes like this with people sharing numbers. So anyway, at this point, it is five years in to me having a business. And I’m so grateful for those first few years because they have truly informed the work that I’m doing now, as a perfectionism coach, and helping perfectionist entrepreneurs and all of that, like it wouldn’t have been possible if I didn’t have that experience myself. But it meant that like profitability slash revenue was zero for 2013 2014 2015. In 2016, was a few $1,000 2017. Same kind of story.

So 2018, for me, that year was a quantum leap kind of feeling in terms of having my first 10k month, which I really had on this pedestal from everyone talking about 10k months, I had the full experience where as we often find you hit a milestone, you feel the same, it’s very jarring because you thought, you know, glitter would get covered on everything, and you’d just be skipping along. But anyway, that was that year 2018. 2019, so revenue was 195,000. So this is triple the year prior. And in 2019, I started PGSD. And at the time, it was a membership.

And in 2019, I also left my part time job, mid year, I think my last day was in July 2019. And that was after launching PGSD. And I think we had 222 members sign up. And that meant I had more than 10,000, or about 10,000 a month of recurring revenue. And I had met the goal that I had for myself in order to leave my part time job, I did a whole episode on going from full time work to full time entrepreneurship.

So if you’re interested in that journey, I will link that episode up in the show notes off the top of my head. It’s episode 125. But I could be wrong about that, too. Anyway, shownotes, if you want to hear any of these episodes I mentioning, but expenses were 152,000 for that year, my salary was 17,000. So I started paying myself only once I left the part time job, I’m pretty sure from memory. So that’s why it was that I hadn’t been paying myself for many months. And the profit was 42,000 for that year.

So profit wise about double revenue from the year prior revenue wise. It was triple from the year prior. Expenses wise, triple from the year prior as well. And yeah, that was a really important year in the business. And I was working with a coach Erin May Henry throughout the entirety of 2019. Pretty sure that was the year we did it. Yes. 2019. And my goal when I was working with her was 100,000 in revenue, which I did over that, and also been able to leave my full time or my part time job, which I did as well.

So that year, I think is one that I will always looking at my business journey, which I’m still just at the beginning of I will always reflect on and really just it took so much courage to leave that part time job because I was so scared of leaving and then having to go back even once the business like at this point. So that year the business made nearly $200,000. And it still felt like my security blanket to be working in a job where I was making about a quarter of that.

And I’m so proud of myself for taking that leap. And even though like Steve was like you can always go back because like I know I just I really don’t want to have to go back like I’d rather stay longer and then be able to stay in entrepreneurship then have to go back and that was just my ego around it and my identity around being smart and capable and not wanting to be seen to be otherwise. So anyway, that was 2019. I’m very proud of myself for that year, and that was when we get PGSD launched.

And I think from memory, the end of 2019, I also decided that I was only going to be selling PGSD. And I would be any other courses or programs I had, they would be getting rolled into PGSD. And I was just going to be focusing on one thing, because at that time, I had all these different offers that I could help people with. And it got it was confusing for me. And I think it was also confusing for others, but more so it just kept me like, never having to do the real work when it came to marketing and selling and learning that skill set.

Because I was so busy with everything. And with like this launch, and then that launch, and then that launch, that I wasn’t actually able to give myself the time and space I needed to be able to give a full effort, like I was busy with everything so that if something failed, I could subconsciously say to myself, well, it would have done better if you weren’t so busy with this other thing or that other thing.

So that was 2019. In a nutshell. Again, all of this is on the podcast, I’ve documented everything quite well, I think. So if you want to hear more, you can go back. 2020, the year of well, the first year of COVID. So revenue for that year was 418,000. So from PGSD, which was the only thing I was selling, it was 351,000. And then also government grants that we had in Australia for businesses during COVID times, I slashed the business received 67,000. So that total the 418 or 419, or whatever expenses were 298,000. So my salary that year was 67,000.

Again, this is all rough, just for the point of illustrating things. And profit was 120,000 for that year. And I think 2020 in hindsight feels like a bit of a blur, I got pregnant at the end of 2020. So pretty much the last quarter of 2020, I was in the first trimester with Lydia and her. Like the pregnancy kind of lined up pretty much exactly trimester wise, with the quarters. So in that full last quarter, I was nauseous and not feeling like myself at all, and not feeling creative whatsoever.

And also in 2020, I believe it was around March, we began getting the business like I really realized that if I wanted to have a baby and be able to have time off and have the space to do that, that there were so many systems and processes that were in my head, that kind of everything in PGSD relied on me being the one to deliver it like the coaching calls and that kind of thing. So during this time, it was really starting to figure out, Okay, how are we going to sell PGSD? Like what platforms through? What are we going to use?

And so I invested in a program about webinars and evergreen funnels and that kind of thing. And yeah, just starting to systemize, and document and really begin to figure out, like, what that would all look like Team wise, and different things like that, again, all documented on the podcast. So that year 120k in profit in 2021 is the year I really want to break down. And actually I should look at overall because I haven’t got an overall figure for you for 2021. And that might be helpful. And then I can break it down into quarters.

But 2021. So to set the thing, quarter one, I was in my second trimester, quarter two in my third trimester, I gave birth to Lydia in mid year. And then I had planned to have quarter three and off in quarter four off in terms of like still doing little bits and pieces, but not having to be on coaching calls and certain tasks. So I’d planned to be able to have six months off if I wanted, like I’d set the basically I’d set the business up for that. And it turned out that once I gave birth like a few weeks later, I was like okay, like I’m keen to start getting back into things but I didn’t business wise.

And then I think it was around September that I was like, Okay, I’m really wanting to get back into things and dabbling here and there and all of that. So that really influenced what 2021 looked like. And I’ll talk through it more quarter by quarter. But overall, the year was not profitable. So the total revenue was 332,000. The PGSD revenue was 301. And also we had 30,000 from a government grant in Australia, they have the Export Development marketing grant.

If you’re an Australian business, and you have customers who are overseas, you do marketing overseas highly recommend googling that, and thinking about applying for that. Anyway, so that was that. And then expenses was 397,000. So net profit was negative. This is what I really want to talk about this year, negative 66,000. And within that, my salary was about 90,000, professional development was about 46,000. Contract work, which I want to talk about was 135,000. Advertising was 42,000. And then we have things like Stripe fees, which any time we receive money through stripe, we have to pay a fee off the top of that.

What else have we got in here? Accounting? A few 1000 for that, and bookkeeping. And then we have in here I think, is tax in there as well. Yes, income tax expense for the business about 30,000. So these are all rough figures. And just to illustrate those software subscriptions was about $1,000, which is pretty impressive is that is a lot of what the business. Oh no, sorry, subscriptions 12,000. That sounds about right, for all the different platforms that we have in things like that.

So this is the year that until a reframe in quarter 4 2021. I was feeling like things weren’t working. And that I also had, I think, like, during this period, I was figuring out or deciding who as a business, we help and I went through a period, which if you listen back to the podcast, you will hear me talking about things in this way of helping instead of who we help now and which is who we’ve always held. It’s just so funny to actually look back. And like it’s always been this, but helping perfectionist entrepreneurs get out of their own way. So we help.

So business owners who are perfectionist, and we help them with the perfectionism side, so the business side can grow. Whereas for a little period, I think it was 2020 to like mid 2020 to mid 2021. And this is an important part of the journey. And I’m so grateful I went through this because I had to I was like, I love helping entrepreneurs, I love business stuff. Like I could talk all day about business stuff. I’m constantly learning different things. And so I want to help perfectionists build businesses, which might sound like the same thing.

But instead of the focus being on the perfectionism work, the focus was more on the business side of things with the touch of the perfectionism side of things, rather than it being the perfectionism side of things with a touch of the business side. So during that period, as well, I had in the same way that a personal trainer might tell themselves unnecessarily, a story that they need to have their best body in order to get clients.

I was really in this mindset that now is helping people with businesses, that my business needed to be in tip top shape, and never having any ups and downs just UP UP, UP, UP. And that was part of what would sell the would yet sell clients on joining PGSD and that kind of thing. And in hindsight, it’s so obvious that’s not the case. And I think this is something that’s really important to hear if you help entrepreneurs or even if you anyone you help that in your business, whether it’s through a service or a product or anything like that, if you’re thinking that you have to be this perfect example of what it looks like to use your product or to be an example of your service.

Like for me, it’s like for perfectionism stuff. If I’m thinking I have to never ever procrastinate. I have to never ever feel overwhelmed. I have to never ever skip a week of power planning. I have to never ever, you know, all the things that I teach people like not to do, in a sense, then, like that’s the only way that I’ll be successful and it’s so true because I know from my experience that nothing sells me on having someone be my coach or mentor or teacher as much as them sharing the realities of what it is that their helping people do and the ups and downs and that they are also human.

And it just like I like when I had a personal trainer, I would rather hear that he was at times, you know, he might have dessert every night when he hadn’t planned to or whatever, then hearing that he’s, you know, got an amazing body and that he never ever eats off his plan. And like, it just it isn’t relatable to hear that. And so when I have really reflected on this, and done my introspection on it, and it just has encouraged me more and more to go back to really what I was doing a lot in 2018 2019, particularly, which was just sharing this kind of stuff that I’m sharing in this episode.

And for a minute, I was really like, oh, I don’t want to share that I’m struggling in certain ways, which in a way, I wasn’t even struggling. I just it was feeling like everything has to be zipped up tiptop to be able to share it otherwise, people won’t want to work with me in that kind of thing. So I’m so glad I’ve come like full circle on that. Because when I started my blog, I knew the thing that would set me apart would be be myself the cliche stuff, but with that sharing the struggles, the behind the scenes, the ups and downs.

And all of that in the numbers too, because hearing other people’s numbers helped me so much. So yeah, there was a period during this year that I’m talking about 2021 where I was figuring things out. I mean, we’re always in the process of learning, but figuring a lot out and feeling like I wasn’t like I guess I wasn’t an example of what I was teaching even though I was but I wasn’t feeling like I was.

And that then, like exacerbated anything that wasn’t working, it didn’t help me like feeling that way didn’t help me make things work, it only kept me from getting things to work as much as they possibly could. So let’s go through quarter by quarter. So quarter one. Now, just sharing a bit of what I was up to in that quarter, second trimester. So I had energy and was feeling pretty good in that quarter, I was also feeling a bit of pressure, because I knew that the next quarter, I probably was going to be feeling pretty uncomfortable, I was probably going to be pretty preoccupied with the fact that I was about to give birth.

And I wanted to have a lot of time and space in my calendar so that anything unexpected came up or if Liddy came early, that I would be able to have everything wrapped up because I didn’t I definitely I knew I didn’t want to be sitting in hospital, like after just given birth, needing to get on a coaching call, or being in the PGSD forum or anything like that.

So quarter one, was when we hired some three, specifically, PGSD coaches, some helpers for being in the community of community managers, and was just starting to, like figure out with the we were doing Facebook ads to a webinar, an evergreen funnel, was this actually going to work because when it came to looking at the stats in terms of the ads, that it was working, but at the same time, it wasn’t working to the degree that we could then just put more and more money into it and scale it because it wasn’t profitable enough for that to make sense.

So that was something as well, during that period that we were figuring out is like, you know, what are we going to do in terms of selling PGSD. So once we I reopened it in, I think it was November 2019. So launch it in June 2019. It was open, close. So after that, no one could enroll until we opened again in November. And then it stayed open from November, until the launch that we did in May 2021, when we close the doors, and now PGSD only has week long enrollment periods.

So at this time, it was open all the time, I was like trying to figure out how to constantly talk about it in a way that really felt good to me and figuring out the ad side of things and all of that. So in terms of expenses. In that quarter, wait did I go through it, the breakdown figures. So revenue was 108,000. Expenses was 102,000. So profit was 6000. Advertising to Facebook ads, Instagram ads was 28,000. Contract work was 34,000. And my salary was 22,000, roughly.

So you can see the contract work, a lot of expense there in terms of having someone helping with the Facebook ads, and also the team that we had. And really like in hindsight, during this time, we definitely over hired. And I think that was because I was so like wanting to make sure that I was going to be able to take time off when I had Lydia and that I wouldn’t have to jump back in. So it felt like if we just had one, say for example, we just had one PGSD Coach helping or if we just have one community manager that if something happened, and they weren’t able to continue, then it would be back on me.

And so the approach we took and it ended up being one that like a few months after this, realizing this was the case that we had over hired, but I don’t regret doing it. And I think that was a necessary part of the journey, and love the PGSD coaches that we had and all of that. So that was really just figuring out like Okay, like what are things going to look like. And I was really scared to hire coaches and thinking about how can I teach others how to coach in the way that I do specifically with perfectionism that the way that you know, we talk about perfectionism and coach on it is not the way it’s commonly talked about.

Lets talked about as being this toxic thing, and you have to overcome it and manage it and naughty naughty for being a perfectionist. And that’s not how we approach it at all. And that’s why it works get people out of their own way. But how would they are going to be able to really teach others like other coaches how to coach the same way.

So anyway, that quarter was really distilling down all the key principles into training for them and bringing them on and all of that kind of thing. So there was a lot going on that quarter. I felt like I don’t think I was posting on Instagram at all during that time or anything. There was just a lot of behind the scenes, stuff that took a lot of courage. And yeah, I really it was a… There nwas a lot of personal growth in that quarter. And then in quarter two, so revenue was 117,000 expenses 122,000, profit was negative 5000.

So this was a quarter before I was giving birth. And so in terms of expenses back in that advertising was 12. contract work was 41,000, my salary was 22,000. And I just want to touch on the salary stuff that, in my mind, I’d really been, like a stickler for what is profit. And in that sense that, you know, my salary is an expense. And then profit is after that’s considered, and really just being kind to myself and seeing like, actually my salary, like if I wanted to, I could mentally, even though my accountant wouldn’t agree, I can mentally count that as profit.

And then I’m taking my salary like, it’s, it’s not that I have to have this strict accounting view of things in the way that I’m thinking about it, if that will help me to stay in a better place mindset wise, so that I can make more money. The same approach with like investing in advertising, also, investing in the team. And that really helped me figure so many things out as a leader, building a team and having the team doing a lot of work that I wasn’t able to do, because it’s just not where I worked best in terms of like setting up different systems and processes or things like that, like that.

That was an investment or the contract work that we had in the advertising, that my salary I could mentally think of as the profit as well. So that was something that I think I heard an episode from James Wedmore, at some point in 2021, where he was talking about, like, you don’t have to think about profit the same way your accountant does. And you can kind of you know, any money, you’re reinvesting in terms of professional development, which I have invested hundreds and 1000s of dollars into coaches and programs and all of that, which I know for sure I wouldn’t be wearing in the business today without those investments, that you don’t have to count that as just an expense.

Like it can be, you know, there are certain expenses, say for example, like a software subscription. So for example, with a podcast, we have Libsyn, which is the platform that we use to then it disseminates a podcast everywhere. That I mean, that’s still an investment, and it’s got an ROI on it. But really, having you know, certain expenses like that and thinking differently about one’s like advertising and investing in other people to help and that kind of thing. And that really helped me, I can’t remember exactly when that was.

I might link up that episode, if I can find it in the show notes for you, if you care to listen to it. But that really helped me start to think like, okay, even though in terms of what my accountant would see, the profit is negative, that that doesn’t mean that the business still isn’t in a state of growth, and then I’m not still in a state of growth. So during quarter two, we decided to stop running the ads, and that we weren’t going to continue doing the Evergreen funnel. And also during this time, I really was having to think about PGSD and the future of the program.

And what would best serve our PGSDers and decided to change it from a membership where people were paying monthly and could cancel and leave to it been a lifetime access program. And the big reason for that was because there were so many people who would join, get out of their own way and be like, Okay, well now I can leave PGSD because I’m out of my own way. So I’m gonna go focus on other things. And it mended then, you know, six months later, when they might have done something new or had an experience and their perfectionism handbrake came back on a little bit, they didn’t have the tools and support and community.

We have such a strong community in PGSD and PGSD is you do zoom calls with each other and have Instagram DM chats and all these different things. And so they were feeling like well, it doesn’t make sense to keep paying monthly. Because I’ve gotten the result I’ve got my own way. And I’m going to focus on other things, but I want to be in the community but I just was seeing that there was so many people that who were still PGSDers who were deciding to leave PGSD.

And that that didn’t have to be a decision that they needed to make and also as perfectionist like putting pressure on ourselves like Well, if I’m paying monthly, I need to be getting all these results every month, instead of recognizing like, there’s gonna be ups and downs, it’s gonna be times where it feels like one step forward, two steps back and that kind of thing. So that was a huge decision that influenced the remainder of the year, I felt very calm and confident in that decision, even though it meant so we had, I think, at that time, a couple of 100 of PGSDers who were members, who were paying monthly, and we said to everyone, hey, we’re taking you into a lifetime access.

So you can either pay this lump sum amount, and basically be transitioned over to lifetime access now, or once you’re in for X number of more months, then we will stop like, we will cancel your card, and we will stop taking payments from you, and you will stay in PGSD. So we were basically turning revenue away, we were doing this right before, I was about to have time off. To have Lydia I had never had a baby before anything like that did not know what to expect on the other side of that. And if I would still have the desire as much to be in the business and to be selling and all of that, but it just felt like the right decision.

And so that was a huge part of that quarter, and we did a launch in May 2021, basically just a promotion around, okay, we’re not going to be this other decision, we’re not going to be open all the time anymore, it’s going to be open and closed enrollment. So we’re going to be open in May 2021. And then we’re closing it at the end of that promotion. And then you won’t get another opportunity to sign up for PGSD this year. So that’s what we did in quarter two.

And I felt like when I went into, like being a mom, and having that whole experience, business wise, I think like that launch in May, I had put a lot of pressure on myself, because I really wanted to have my first 100k month, which I have now had and I still feel the same. So that whole thing again. But anyway, I had been really like since 2019, I was like I want to have 100k month. And I had really put that on a pedestal. And basically the same thing I did with 10k a month and then 100k a year, I was doing it again.

And I just was like I really want to have 100k month before I give birth to Lydia and that would just be the funnest way to go into being a mom and feeling like about us and all of that. And I’m really glad that that didn’t happen. I think for that launch, we made maybe about $60,000 or something like that. Because like that was a growth I needed. And I think that if it had been that 100k month, then it would have just covered up some of my growth to do work to do on myself.

So when into giving birth, feeling very supported by the team and feeling like even though things hadn’t been profitable, and that we weren’t going to be selling for the remainder of the year that I had built up in the business, a very healthy savings account. And basically, to summarize that every, like all the revenue that comes in, I automatically put 30% aside for taxes. And then I put 20% aside for savings.

And then the business operates on the rest. And so it’s not like what is left over gets saved, I put money aside for taxes first, and then I save money. And so it meant that we had… I want to say about $100,000 maybe more than that 150,000. Somewhere in that realm, in the savings account. And this is a big part of in my opinion, feeling safe when the money isn’t flowing in is that when it is to be supporting your future self so that you don’t need to make short term decisions and that you have a buffer there that allows you to be long term decision making and strategic because I think without having that savings in the account, and knowing that I could pay the team the entire time that I might have off.

I could also keep paying myself and that kind of thing. That it meant that I could decide that we were going to change PGSD to be an open close, and that we could change it to lifetime access. If I had pressure like that every month we had to making X amount and I didn’t have a buffer there to support me in my decision making. I think it would have been more challenging, not that it can’t be done. But we all have our own risk tolerances. We also have our own money mindset work to do so.

For me that was a really important piece of this. And it’s not that having savings creates the security or the safety, but it makes it easier to have those kinds of thoughts that we are sufficient and provided for when that’s there, so it’s kind of like a crutch. And I don’t feel like there’s any problem with having that crutch. But we just have to make sure we’re not dependent on that crutch for our belief. And that we do give it some legs of its own our belief, because otherwise, then when the savings are gone, we’re going to not feel sufficient.

And we really want to be working towards where we are feeling sufficient with savings and without savings. We’ve been able like sufficient enough that you feel like you could put an investment on a credit card, and you can trust your future self is going to figure out how to pay that off, and that you’re going to reap the rewards of that investment. Like, it’s not about just having all these savings. And I think there have been times where we’ve been very focused on having a lot of savings in the business in a scarcity kind of way.

And that is something to be paying attention to as well, when it’s like hoarding money, because you’re not trusting that in the future, the money will come. But anyway, that was a big part of this. So quarter 3 2021, revenue was 40,000. So this was from payments that were still coming in from PGSD, from people who were still making their monthly payments until they were granted lifetime access. A government grant of $30,000, and then expenses was 71,000. So contract work 31, my salary 22,000. So that meant profit was zero in that quarter.

If we look at it accounting wise, again, if we break it down, my salary was 22,000. So I’d say technically, it wasn’t a loss. But according to the accounting amount it is. So that quarter, I really wasn’t doing anything in the business, it was just kind of running along. While I was in the baby bubble, very sleep deprived. I was really glad that I had set up podcast episodes for that whole period. And that I had planned out, you know what was going out and already created it because I was I think I did my first episode back in October. So that’s quarter four.

So quarter three, I just was so tired that I did not feel like I could like coach, or do a podcast episode or anything, I just couldn’t hold my train of thought at all. So that quarter, I didn’t really do anything in the biz, I didn’t do anything. I think maybe at the end of that quarter, I started to dabble in like some Instagram stuff. And that was because it really felt like I don’t have to speak I can just write things. And I can do it like when Liddy is asleep on my chest, and I just can’t get my laptop out and tinker away.

Quarter 4 2021 revenue was 34,000. Expenses was 101,000. So profit was at negative 66,000. And so I want to talk about this because this especially like this is when I had the realization from listening to one of Stacey Boehman’s podcast episodes, and she was talking to Kristen Boss, who was saying that she realized that she was scaling her business that at times you would need to be in planned Profit Loss and intentionally not make money. And even though like I already had decided were intentionally not going to make money. But we were still tracking weekly what our revenue and expenses were.

And just seeing that it was like I hadn’t fully given myself permission like we’re not selling during this period. We have revenue coming in from our members who are still making their monthly payments. But like I was beating myself up looking at the weekly revenue and expenses, even though it was intentional that it was going to be negative way. I saw it was negative. I was like, ah, it shouldn’t be negative. So that episode really, really, really helped release…

So much of the shame that I had about it and the story as time goes up, I was like, Oh, this is strategic. Like me planning not to make money like not to sell in this quarter is actually a strategic business move that my future self is going to be so grateful for. And now as my future self, I can say that is so true. But at the time, like I just needed that shift to see it was strategic and that this is so important. That didn’t put me in Okay, cool. I’m gonna sit back and do nothing and trust that at some point in the future, things are gonna work out. Think of it as planned Profit Loss, allow me to just release that shame and get to work on setting things up the way I wanted to and address it any gaps that I had in my knowledge and things like that.

So expenses wise 101,000. So 200, no sorry, 34,000 of that was for the 200k mastermind that I joined in November. And I got access to the content for that at that time. So I could start working through that and I went through a whole thing of like, Is my growth that I need to just like, take what I already know and apply it or is my growth to actually invest in something that will help me with my skill set around selling and marketing and all that kind of thing. And I was kind of on the fence about that. And then I was like, no, like, I know that if I invest in myself, I always make like, there’s no way it’s not paying off because I make it pay off.

And why I don’t do this, and it feels like the perfect time. And also all these reasons, it wasn’t the perfect time. But I was like, this is the next step for me. And I decided that intentionally so that was that my salary was 24,000, contract work was 27,000. And so profit, as I said, was negative 66,000. But if you take out the investment, and you take out my salary, it was negative 9000. And I think that during that quarter was really when I switched from, as I said, being like, like it’s not working, and it should be working. And I should be making more money and all of that to like, Oh, this is so strategic.

And I’m going about this in a really business minded way. And it’s going to pay off and I’m going to make it pay off. So then we get to quarter 1 2022. So revenue, roughly speaking, was 164,000 expenses, 55,000, and profit was 110,000. So you can see that there was a big change from the 2021 figures were overall my profit was negative 65,000, to quarter one, the first three months of 2022. Our profit is 110,000. I’m about to reinvest in 200k, the next six months of it, so that investment wasn’t in this.

But even if that had been it’d still be like 70 to 80,000. By the way, all this is in Australian dollars 70 to 80,000 profit. And contract work was 14,000, salary 25,000. So quarter one was where it things really started to come together in a sense that like the previous ups and downs that I had been navigating, or started to make sense, in the sense that because I had released that shame, and I was like, Okay, I’m gonna use what I’ve learned in 200k, to do this launch and decided, like for the year, and I’ve documented this recently on the podcast, so not gonna go into it all.

But I did a two episodes on the launch itself, which is episode 316. And also episode 317. I did my growth goal quarterly review for quarter one. So that’s 325. So I won’t go into too much here. But I wanted to mention this quarter at the end of all of this, because before I mentioned this quarter, in quarter 1 2022, just like cool things were profitable. And then 2021 it wasn’t. And it’s not working. And it’s so easy to tell yourself a story like that. And that’s what I did. And then just having that mindset shift in quarter 4 2021.

And feeling safe, that I wasn’t making money allowed me to lean in and have my first 100k month and also to really set the business up with a really strong foundation in terms of Team wise making adjustments there so that you can tell like the contract work expenses were 14,000 compared with previously, in 2021, a lot of the months were 40,000 30,000. So we had like half the contract work expenses, and significantly more revenue, and significantly more profits specifically.

And a big part of that was that like simplifying the business back end, and really deciding, like, we know who we help, we know what we’re offering. We know where we’re launching, we know what platforms are on, and just been decided about that which took a lot of growth from me like it. It’s not just that, like I stumbled upon those decisions, I was intentional with them and map them out and was decisive and brave with that.

So that quarter was really just so fascinating to experience because before I had that breakthrough in quarter four, about planning Profit Loss, I was really thinking like, like I had so much pressure on myself for the quarter 1 launch. And then once I zoomed out a bit and got some perspective. I really thought these years as a you know, a period of time within a business bigger business journey. And really normalizing as well that it’s not like their awesome business as where revenue wise it’s Quantum Leap, Quantum Leap, quantum leap. But a lot of most businesses, it’s not like that.

And that is so normal. And a big thing that helped with that as well was being in the mastermind. And just like who you surround yourself with matters. And so being in that community where I was going into it, one of the top earners, which was so interesting, because I was telling myself this whole story that I didn’t know what I was doing, it wasn’t working. And then to just be in this group where I was in the room broken down into groups for breakout sessions, and I was in the group of highest earners.

And I was like, Oh, actually, like, it just gave me that perspective of I do know what I’m doing. I have done so many things in terms of like, I’m not doing one on one coaching anymore. I’m coaching in PGSD, but it’s program and the business is set up in such a scalable way that a lot of things that other people in the mastermind are working on I have already worked on. And I had kind of dismissed that because I wasn’t doing that while being insanely profitable.

I had told myself I should be and that I had done the work to simplify the business setup systems, hire coaches, hire community managers, allow myself to be out of the business and have it still operating and delivering results to our PGSDers without me in the day to day. And like really just seeing that as such a win whilst also creating and giving birth to a human being. So it’s just yeah, it all makes sense, in hindsight.

And it also is easy from the outside to say, well, of course, it was going to work out for you, but it’s different for me, but like this is always going to happen. And it might seem like that from the outside. But it doesn’t feel like that from the inside. Unless we’re thinking in that way. And it can be challenging at times to think in that way. So I know that it’s tempting for me, when I listen to other people share this kind of thing that it’s like, well, yeah, well, it was always gonna work out. And it’s not that experience when yo’re in it. So I just wanted to share that.

And I hope this has been helpful and has helped you to just normalize the ups and downs of your business growth. And to feel like like when you are in a strategic period, where you are deciding not to sell and it’s very important that you just are onto yourself about this and the reasons why that it’s not okay, cool, I’m not gonna sell so I can get my website perfect. And I can spend all this time creating the perfect product to still like, we want to be courageous with what we’re doing.

So instead, it’s like, the more courageous thing most times, especially in the early stages of the business is to sell with the imperfect website is to launch the product and then create it. And all of those kinds of things. Like when I launch PGSD, there was no content whatsoever inside PGSD. I launched it and then I created it as I went. And then so I first mentioned to in quarter 2 2021, I was creating the PGSD process. And so that was two years after PGSD started, that I actually put everything together into one process.

So it’s really important that you’re just onto yourself if you’re like cool, Sam, just give me permission not to sell. I hate selling I hate feeling salesy. You know, money isn’t that important. Like maybe you got some money mindset stuff going on. Also some perfectionism stuff as well, which is those two areas together. This is why I’m so passionate about business stuff, because the business stuff brings up the money mindset.

And anyway, so if you are feeling like cool, this is my permission slip not to sell in to spend my time perfecting things behind the scenes. That’s not what this episode was about. If you’re feeling that way, please re listen. It’s really about bait like when you’re deciding not to sell, it’s a brave decision not to sell, not a comfortable decision not to sell. And that you were doing that in service of your growth goal this year. And in coming years, your future self, it’s not a subtle way that you’re letting yourself off the hook.

So you can perfect things and kind of go in hibernation. And it’s not to say there aren’t times that you might want to reprieve, that you can plan that in with your power planning and all of that. But when you are telling yourself cool I don’t have to sell so I can spend all this time working on my program or you know updating my product or especially when it’s I can redo my branding or my website or maybe I didn’t have those things in the first place.

So I need to start them just be onto yourself with that. In this situation I was deciding not to sell because, A, I was having a baby. And B, that’s the main decision. But B we will also changing from being open and close or sorry, from being open all the time to be open and close and also been a membership to lifetime access and that had an influence on that as well. And those decisions were me leaving money on the table in a very uncomfortable way, I felt very calm about the decision.

But from the outside, it was like, why would you actually do that, like people are paying you money, happily, month after month after month, and you’re going to stop their credit cards or you know, their paypal account or whatever from paying you. So just a little note to wrap up beyond to yourself, submit a request for coaching, if you need it inside PGSD, if you are or in the forum, if you’re struggling to discern what a good reason not to sell is versus a not so helpful reason not to sell. But all of this to say, the ups and downs are normal.

You are normal, in as much as any of us can be. We’re all weird and wonderful to eat, but nothing has gone wrong, nothing is wrong with you. And that this is what and I, my goodness, what am I saying. An example of the behind the scenes of a business that is successful, that is also profitable, that is supporting me comfortably full time and the team that I have and the lifestyle that I want.

And I just went through a year of not being profitable. And it’s all beautiful, it’s all working out. And it is working like you can be a work in progress and things can be working at the same time. So with that said, if you have found this episode helpful, please take a screenshot and tag me on Instagram I’m @perfectionismproject. I hope you’re having a beautiful day and I will talk to you in the next episode.

If you enjoy this podcast, I invite you to sign up to receive a short, daily “Perfectionist Power-Up” from me. These are little notes and reminders that will help you plan properly as a perfectionist and get out of your own way. So you can go to samlaurabrown.com/power to sign up today and you’ll start receiving motivating Perfectionist Power Ups this week.

If you enjoy this podcast, I invite you to sign up to receive a short, daily “Perfectionist Power-Up” from me. These are little notes and reminders sent to you by email that will help you plan properly as a perfectionist and get you out of your own way. So you can go to samlaurabrown.com/power to sign up today and you’ll start receiving motivating Perfectionist Power Ups this week.

Author: Sam Brown