Epic List of 50 Must-Have Blog & Business Resources for the Solopreneur

by Deborah A Bailey

Whether you're an "solopreneur" or an entrepreneur with a team, you'll need the right tools to make your life easier.

When you're working online (or working from home) you need resources to get things done. Here are some of my favorites.

Blogging & Web Hosting Resources

Bluehost - Hosting services. I use them for my self-hosted Wordpress sites.

GoDaddy - I get my domain names here and have a free landing page here as well. (GoDaddy offers promotions when you buy domain names.)

Blogger - This blog runs on Blogger. Use your Gmail login to create an account.

Blogging class - Jessie on  Journey teaches you how to create a blogging business so you can get paid to travel.

Restored 316 - Wordpress themes (featuing the Genesis framework) and support. (They recently added a business planner to their offerings.)

Georgia Lou Studios - Feminine Wordpress themes and Blogger templates. She created the template for the Secrets of Success blog and the themes for this blog and this one.

Business Start-up Resources

IRS.gov - The Small Business & Self-Employment section has a wealth of documentation and resources.

Legal Forms - Get 5% off legal documents tailored to your specific needs when you go through the Legal Forms page of this site.

FTC - List of resource guides for disclosures.

17 Hats - All-in-one system to manage business applications.

FreshBooks - Software to track your expenses, send invoices, manage clients and more. Read a review of FreshBooks Cloud Accounting software to find out about the options and features.

Shopping Carts & Payments

Paypal - Popular portal to set up payments, transfer funds, send invoices, etc. Accept credit cards anywhere using Paypal Here's card reader.

Square - Accept credit card payments anywhere. They'll provide a card reader to use with your mobile device.

Stripe - Accept online payments.

WooCommerce - Ecommerce platform. Use plugins to integrate into your website.

Payhip - Sell digital downloads.

Shopify - Ecommerce platform. Free trial available.

E-junkie - Sell digital downloads.

SendOwl - Sell digital downloads.

Gumroad - Ecommerce platform.

Selz - Ecommerce platform that you can use as a storefront for your products - including digital downloads.

50 must have blog and business resources for the solopreneur

Create Graphics for Marketing & Branding

Canva - Free online graphics software.

Adobe Photoshop - Adobe suite of products can be purchased as a subscription using Creative Cloud. Free trials available.

Gimp - Free graphics software.

Uplevo - Free online design platform.

Audio Editing & Podcasting

Audacity - Open source audio editing software.

Wavepad Sound Editor - Free audio editing software.

Adobe Audition - Audio editing software. Free trial available.

Podomatic - Podcast platform.

Libsyn - Syndication for podcasts.

iTunes Connect - Submit your podcast feed to iTunes.

Graphics, Printables & Other Useful Things

Creative Market - Design assets and resources.

Etsy - Online marketplace.

Design Cuts - Design resources. 

Graphicdome - Design resources.

Blend Images - Royalty-free stock photos.

Lucid Press - Online Print and Design Publishing Software.

Her Creative Studio - Styled stock images.

Haute Chocolate - Styled stock library.

SmartMockUps - Free online sofware to create computer and mobile device product mock-ups.

Unsplash - Royalty-free images.

iStockPhoto - Royalty-free images and videos. 

Writing & Editing

Chicago Manual of Style Online - One month free trial available.

Grammarly - Free grammar checker.

Smart Edit - Software for editing creative writing. Free trial available.

File Storage

SmugMug - Create your online photo sharing site.

Dropbox - Online file storage. You can also use this to send files.

Copyright © 2017 Deborah A. Bailey

Deborah A. Bailey is a writer, coach, blogger and author of several non-fiction books, novels and a short story collection. She's the creator and host of Women Entrepreneurs Radio™ , a weekly podcast featured on iTunes and Podomatic. For more information about Deborah visit her site: http://DeborahABailey.com.  

Disclaimer: This post contains some affiliate links. Resource recommendations are based on my personal experience and my policy is to only promote products and services that I can safely recommend to my readers. Read about the blog disclosure policy.


5 Tips for Getting Control Over Your Calendar

get control of your calendar
 by Chris Astley

1.  Get clear on your priorities. I remember an old mentor once saying that you can tell what is important to a person by what is in their bank account and on their calendar.

Take a look at your top 5 values, i.e. family, security, freedom, spirituality, etc. Make sure you have time allotted in your calendar for all of these.

It also makes saying no a whole lot easier when you’re clear. If values like freedom and financial security are on your list, that relates to growing a successful business. Also, make sure you are a priority in all of this and that your self-care is recognized. When you take care of yourself, you will be more grounded, clear and have more to give :-)

2. How to block time. I have found the most successful way to do what you want to be doing, and to be actively working toward your goals, is by scheduling everything. A lot of business owners have resistance to this because they feel controlled and that it goes against why they went into business in the first place – which was for the flexibility and freedom.

The reality though is that you are the one dictating what goes on the schedule – you are in control of it. This is a way to ensure that everything that is important to you is on the calendar and actually gets carried out. It also ensures that you are working toward your bigger vision, which again is what you’ve decided on. If you’re working toward someone else’s vision – then we need to have a whole other conversation :-)

5 tips for getting control of your calendar

3. Narrow down your tasks. After deciding what is important to you both personally and professionally, start to break both down into tasks, i.e. working out, meditation, sales calls, project work, emails, etc.  For business activities, look at what the top 2-3 revenue-generating tasks are and make sure those take priority in your calendar.

4. Block out chunks of time based on #3.
I find it best to allot chunks of time based on a monthly basis, i.e. sales calls every Monday from 12-3 pm (I highly advise to allot at least 3 hours a day to having those conversations though when you’re just starting out or have a team in place). It’s also important to stay flexible, so from there you can adjust your schedule each week depending on what you have going on, i.e. you may have an important meeting one week and need to readjust that particular day.

5. What will help you stick to it? This is where it can be difficult. Your subconscious mind wants you to stay where it feels safe, and growing a business and putting yourself out there is threatening. It will try to talk you out of your plan. What will help you stick to it?

Make the decision to commit to the above for at least 6-months and watch how your business and life are completely are transformed.

Namaste, Chris :-)

Written by Success Speaker & Coach Chris Atley, CEO of Chris Atley LLC ~ Decisions by Design. For complimentary success tips for business and life, please visit www.chrisatley.com.

5 Questions to Ask Before You Go Into Business for Yourself

by Deborah A. Bailey

Thinking about starting your own business? Or maybe all you want is a side hustle (with "hustle" being the key word). When it comes to business ownership, do you have the right mindset?

Here are some important questions to ask yourself first!

1. Are you afraid to fail? 

Failure is not a bad word in the entrepreneurial world. A high tolerance for risk and the ability (and desire) to reinvent yourself is required for long-term success. On social media you might only see smiling, happy entrepreneurs who claim to make six figures with every launch. But for every successful launch there's one (or more) that didn't work. You might not hear about those as often, but they're much more likely. Entrepreneurs have to be resilient enough to learn from what didn't work and keep it moving.

2. Do you hate working overtime?

There's no such thing as regular nine-to-five hours when you work for yourself. Even if you have employees or contractors, you'll still have to provide direction. "Auto-pilot" doesn't mean you can have your business run itself while you sit on the beach. Even businesses with efficient systems still have to be managed.

3. Does it make you feel uncomfortable to stand out?

If you’re not comfortable promoting yourself, it will be almost impossible to market your business. You can’t fade into the background then wonder why potential clients don’t know you exist. Even if you hire professional help to market your business, you'll have to get out there at some point.

4. Do you have trouble sticking to self-imposed deadlines?

When you work for yourself, there won't be any managers setting deadlines for you. No supervisors watching you work and no time-clocks to punch.  You'll have to be accountable to the timetables you set. If you have trouble being proactive, you’re going to find it hard to stick to a plan and generate an income on a regular basis.

5. Do you know your worth?

If you come from an “hours for dollars” environment, you're going to have to shift your thinking. Rates and fees should be based on the value you’re delivering, not on the hours it takes to do something.

You'll have to feel comfortable asking for what you're worth. Otherwise, you'll never stop discounting or giving your work away for free. Not that free is bad. It can certainly be used very effectively for some offerings. But if you end up giving away everything because you're afraid to put a value on it - you won't be in business for very long.

As a small business owner, your business will be tied in with your beliefs and feelings about yourself. You won't be just another employee tucked away in a big corporation. You'll be the CEO of your own business.  You've got to be ready to deal with the setbacks along with the successes.

Check your mindset first, then you'll know if you're ready to step out as an entrepreneur.

Copyright © 2017 Deborah A. Bailey

Deborah A. Bailey is a writer, coach, blogger and author of several non-fiction books, novels and a short story collection. She's the creator and host of Women Entrepreneurs Radio™ , a weekly podcast featured on iTunes and Podomatic. For more information about Deborah visit her site: http://DeborahABailey.com.  

7 Exercises You Can Do Right from Your Chair

Business owners who work from home may seem like they are more flexible with their time and with what they do compared to working at the office. However, many of them are still busy with their work and they are glued to the things they have to finish that they even forget taking a break. This is much needed as not standing up or stretching for an extended period can lead to various health risks.

Some of the health problems that you may develop include diabetes and heart attack. The reason for this is that insulin efficiency becomes lower and so as the good cholesterol in your body, as you sit for a long time. This doesn’t have to be the case as there are basic exercises that you can do every now and then while working at home.

Stretching your hands and legs is a good way to loosen those muscles and get the blood flowing properly in your system. You don’t even have to get up from your chair to do these stretches as they can be done while sitting.

There are more exercises that you can easily do while on your chair. We compiled seven of the simplest ones that you can try in an infographic. We want you to stay healthy while working hard to make your business successful that’s why we prepared this.

Start taking better care of your health even when you are busy managing your business from home with the exercises found on this amazing infographics.

7 Exercises You Can Do Right In Your Chair!


Evolving Through Entrepreneurship

by Imelda Arcilla

Being an entrepreneur is more than the conventional terms used in business like scaling, production, making the bottom line etc.

The entrepreneur is the enterprise that she launches through her vision and devotion.

I humorously say if you want to find out your dysfunctions through beliefs, resistance to change, along with your strengths then become an entrepreneur.

It will challenge you to grow beyond what culture and fate gave you to create your own destiny. In the beginning, you play by the rules and when you know the rules you play by your heart and soul mission. Meaning we start off with the influence of culture beliefs, conditioned programming and a limited landscape.

But when the spirit of the entrepreneur is fueled by a great desire to create something beautiful and innovative in the world. It forces us to look inside to see where we may not be showing up fully in our lives to be able to carry the weight of our unlimited dreams. Our ability to manage and redefine challenges is critical and calls for not just a creative solution, but evolution.

We can see that the daily challenges are the obstacle course that strengthen our resolve to evolve us into our greatest potential. Everything we can trace is a stepping stone towards our success and soul expansion towards another level of challenges and achievements.

Sometimes the universe dangles a carrot as an incentive to strive for. Meanwhile it's part of a clever trick to develop you towards mastering your life beyond entrepreneurial aspirations. It forces you to understand what you truly value. Because life reflects your internal beliefs, how does your tribe value your vibe, your ideas, offerings, products and services?

Our business mirrors our internal integrity with our encoded core principles meant to be accessed to serve humanity in a unique way. It solves, heals, connects, inspires collaboration and unifies on some level. Of course, while making money. This is the highest goal.

This is activated through our awakened ambition that only awakens in the process of spiritual initiation. Entrepreneurship is the path that can catalyze the hidden seed potential. Through our soul's desire we activate the latent gifts to succeed beyond expectations.

Often, we are called to reinvent through many processes of rebirths amidst on going transformations that we undertake towards our greatest self. We are constantly under construction to build a better foundation to give the best of who we are in the world. Because like evolution we are always becoming to meet the needs of the current times we live in.

Is your business stuck, in a rut, out of alignment with your success or could be better? Check in to see where you're resisting everything you want, or where you're being asked to evolve to breakthrough your current paradigm. Remember what you're experiencing whether it's overwhelm or a lack of something isn't the problem, but a result of something else.

Ultimately the work we do in our business and how we attain success is so much more than the bottom line. It's how we're activated to, evolve and emerge and become something worth attaining in the end.

About the Author: Imelda Arcilla is a Writer along with her expertise in Spirituality, Self and Soul Development, Holistic Living, Transformation and Esoteric Knowledge.

She has a passion for helping creative entrepreneurs thrive in their unique way. https://www.linkedin.com/in/imeldaarcilla

Tanna Frederick: Actress & Philanthropist on Women Entrepreneurs Radio™

Show #401

In this lively conversation, Tanna Frederick shares how creative people can enjoy successful careers while doing what they love.

Tanna Frederick can currently be seen starring in Henry Jaglom’s romantic mystery “Ovation” opposite James Denton. The story is set in the backstage world of theatre where the cast struggles to keep their play afloat while they search for a murder suspect amongst themselves.

Frederick is also producing and starring in the virtual reality series “Defrost.” Directed by Randal Kleiser, series cast members include Bruce Davison, Harry Hamlin, Christopher Atkins and Carl Weathers. “Defrost” was presented at Sundance’s New Frontier Program and Cannes Film Festival.

Next year, she’ll also star as a single mother who returns to Iowa (Frederick’s hometown) to deal with her past in “Garner, Iowa.”

Frederick is a mainstay of the Los Angeles theatre community. In 2013, she won the LA Stage and Eddon awards for Best Actress for N. Richard Nash’s “The Rainmaker” at the Edgemar Theatre. The Los Angeles Times gave it Critics’ Choice and said, “The standout of this terrific cast is Tanna Frederick’s acerbically yearning Lizzie…It’s a transformation not to be missed.” She recently wrapped Jaglom’s original play “Train to Zakopané” also at the Edgemar. The play was based upon true events that occurred in the life of Jaglom’s father as he crossed Poland on a train in 1928 when anti-Semitism was rife in much of Europe. The Los Angeles Times said of her performance, “Tanna Frederick’s radiance and emotional transparency….won me over.” 

This month Frederick will direct and star in “Sylvia” at the Odyssey Theatre opening on October 21st. In a previous run of the play, the Huffington Post said “Tanna Frederick is truly brilliant as Sylvia. She embodies the fun-loving, childlike spirit of the dog.”

Frederick's performance in her first feature with Jaglom, “Hollywood Dreams,” earned her Best Actress at WorldFest Houston, Montana International Film Festival, Fargo Film Festival and the Wild Rose Film Festival. The film took Best Picture honors at the San Luis Obispo Film Festival and to Best Comedy at WorldFest Houston. She was named Method Fest’s “Performer to Watch” and has also received the Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Festival’s “Maverick” Award. 

Off-screen, Frederick has proved just as driven and talented. A fitness aficionado who runs daily, Frederick ranked 52nd out of 1,321 women in her division in the LA Marathon.  She is a second-degree Tae Kwon Do blackbelt and a passionate surfer.  She founded “Project Save Our Surf,” a non-profit that promotes clean oceans and water.

She is also founder of the Iowa Film Festival, now in its’ seventh year and was named recipient of the University of Iowa’s Distinguished Alumni Award in 2012.


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Success Often Isn’t Convenient

by Chris Atley

I want you to take a hard look at the story you’re telling yourself that is keeping you from advancing to receiving abundance in all areas of your life, and truly living your ideal lifestyle.

Here are some examples.

Ya but….

I don’t have the time.

I don’t have the money.

I don’t know how.

My inner guidance told me it isn’t the right time.

And so on…

These stories seem real, but they are exactly that. Stories. Reasons to keep yourself stuck and right where you are. And ohhhh….isn’t the subconscious mind sneaky…it will give you all of the evidence to support these reasons. ALL of them. You will buy into it and then stay exactly where you are.

Think of a time when you’ve really wanted something. That was really important to you. You find a way to make it happen right? No matter what.

Think of all of the inspiring success stories about people who came from “nothing” and made something great of themselves.

They really didn’t have the money. Even worse, they had no one believing in them most of the time.

BUT they still did it. They went for it. They persevered at all odds, especially with those “odds” being against them.

It’s because they made the DECISION to go for it first.

DECISION always, always comes first. The universe cannot provide you with the way unless you decide to do it first. THEN and only THEN does everything start lining up. You have to keep going for it though, and continuing to say yes to the opportunities that present themselves.

This is where success isn’t always convenient. What you’re asked to next, or shown to do more like it, may not always be comfortable. It’s usually not.

It’s because your PARADIGM is being asked to shift. You are going to be asked to get out of your comfort zone. To step into a new way of doing things. Into a NEW belief system. That is freakin’ tough. I’m not going to lie. This is where the real work lies. Letting go of old thoughts and beliefs no longer serving you. Letting go of the stories keeping you stuck, which you think are safe, but really aren't. Growing isn’t safe. Stepping out isn’t comfortable. Saying yes when you have no idea “how” in the world you’re going to make something happen doesn’t feel safe. It means showing-up differently in your life and relationships. This is hard. All of those things seem safe, but the reality is they keep us playing small.

It’s like saying you want to live in a new house by the ocean. But not then being willing to do what you need to do to get there. Up leveling like that involves a new way of thinking. You can’t bring your old thoughts into a new equation and expect to get a different solution. It just doesn’t work that way.

So, I ask you today, what is the new and empowered belief you must adopt in order to create the life you’re really wanting? What is the new story you want to tell yourself?

Here are some ideas,

Success comes easy.

The universe has my back and is always showing me the next steps.

I am worthy of love and success.

My success is certain.

Make the decision to go for it, and start reprogramming your subconscious mind by repeating this new belief over, and over again. You will START to see through the lens of THIS new belief instead, and just watch your life shift like magic! All of a sudden you will stop being a victim to your circumstances, and stat creating the circumstances you need to support your goals and dreams.

You can do it. It’s time to write a new story. I believe in you.

Much Love,

 ~ Chris :-)

Written by Success Speaker & Coach Chris Atley, CEO of Chris Atley LLC ~ Decisions by Design. For complimentary success tips for business and life, please visit www.chrisatley.com


Alissa Chavez Inventor of Hot Seat: Child Car Hot Seat Safety Device on Women Entrepreneurs Radio™

Show #400
Alissa Chavez is a teenage inventor who made headlines for her product Hot Seat.

Hot Seat is an alarm system that prevents children from being accidentally left in a hot car. Alissa was raised by her single mother who owns a home childcare business. When Alissa was 14 years old she heard so many stories of kids dying after they were unintentionally left in a hot car. These stories were heartbreaking and she wanted to do something to prevent these types of accidents.

Hot seat started as a project for her school science fair at age 14. She patented her product that same year. Alissa made headlines for Hot Seat and was even named one of Glamour Magazine's Women of the Year: Tech Heroes and Hometown Heroes. Hot Seat is the first of many products Alissa plans to bring to the market with her company Assila.

Give and Get Program: This program allows people who don't have small children to purchase a Hot Seat and that Hot Seat will be donated to someone who does. This is a great way for everyone to get involved and together we can all prevent anymore children from becoming victim to this type of tragedy.

Where you can purchase Hot Seat: www.babyhotseat.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/babyhotseat
Twitter: @babyhotseat
Instagram: @babyhotseat1

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