Listen to the episode:
Sarah Von Bargen was a highly productive blogger for 14 years, showed up constantly on Instagram, and had years of success on Pinterest.
Sarah also ran several online courses where she helped thousands of people learn to make small, but significant changes to improve their lives.
Using a strategic approach to happiness, Sarah recently mapped out a huge transformation in her own life, pivoting from online internet personality to digital marketing consultant.
On this episode, I’ll dig into what inspired Sarah’s pivot, her methodology for designing a sustainable life, and how she implemented those changes.
More from the episode
- Sarah describes how she became a public internet personality, what it’s like, and why she opted for a more private life.
- Sarah shares her thoughts on social media, and why using it as part of your business model can contribute to burnout.
- How did Sarah reverse engineer her life based on her needs, and when did she first start getting intentional about her happiness?
- Why Sarah says she’s giving herself “permission for my career to be the least interesting thing that I’m doing.”
- Sarah’s “Good Enough” timer, and how she stops herself from falling into the trap of perfectionism.
About Sarah Von Bargen
Sarah Von Bargen has consulted, strategized, and ghostwritten for hundreds of companies, bloggers, and entrepreneurs. Her clients include fashion labels, authors, life coaches, photographers, restaurants, psychologists, interior designers, and people who wouldn’t want you to know they have a ghostwriter. She’s written three ebooks, an e-course, produced and sold four calendars, and has a literary agent and an app in the works.
Connect with Sarah
Click here to view the transcript!
Sarah Von Bargen: Truly, until I was like, 34, I was working two jobs to make ends meet. I was teaching and then I was also like tutoring on the side and I just sort of realized like if I want my life to feel like anything other than just a slog of task after task I really need to like treat enjoyment with the same seriousness that I treat getting having a dentist appointment.
Jessica Abel: What does it really take to become successful as a writer or artist?
There are a lot of destructive myths out there about what a creative career is supposed to look like. We’re told we shouldn’t care about worldly success or money. We’re told that if we’re good enough, everything would magically fall into place. That’s a lie and it keeps us struggling, baffled, and hungry for any shred of information that might shed light on how to keep making the work we love. That’s why I get any two artists or writers or any creatives really together in a room. And it’s a foregone conclusion that the conversation will turn to money and the nitty gritty reality of being a professional, creative.
I’m cartoonist and creative business. Coach Jessica Abel.
In my own life. The studio visit back channel conversations with other artists where we share our insights and hacks anxieties and red flags have been critical to any success I’ve achieved.
And now. I’m bringing that conversation to you. This is the autonomous creative.
Jessica Abel: My guest today is Sarah Von Bargen. Sarah was a highly productive blogger for 14 years. Showed up constantly on Instagram. Had years of success on Pinterest. And ran several extremely affordable happinesss. And she made it all look so easy.
Sarah doesn’t look it on the outside, but she’s a bit of a mad scientist. Instead of trying to transform a lead into gold. She uses her significant alchemical powers to turn time into happiness. Sarah has deployed her kind, encouraging, but rigorous teaching. To help thousands of people learn to make small changes and significant choices that make their lives better, calmer and happier.
And of happiness she uses the same approach on her own life. Which is what led Sarah to realize that she had set up many aspects of her life in a way that wasn’t making her happier.
She then used her strategic brain to map out a huge transformation in an effort to keep getting closer to her ideal.
I’m super excited to dig into what went into her pivot from online internet personality to very non-visible service provider. What’s been lost, what’s been gained, and where she sees it all going.
We’ll get all the details, right after this.
Jessica Abel: This episode of the Autonomous creative is brought To you by the Creative Engine. I talk to working creative people all the time, both on the show and in our membership, the Autonomous Creative Collective, and one of the biggest challenges they struggle with is procrastination.
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Now let’s start the show. Sarah, welcome.
Sarah Von Bargen: Oh my gosh. Thank you so much for having me.
Jessica Abel: So let’s just start with what going on right now? So what is your work life like these days? What do you do all day?
What is your work life like?
Sarah Von Bargen: So these days I have pivoted away from being what I would call a quote unquote public internet personality to exclusively doing retainer based digital marketing consulting. So I help people with email marketing, sales pages, content marketing, social media, happiness creation and sort of just high level strategy. And I will occasionally help with implementation and execution if they need it.
What I’ve found is for a lot of business owners is service providers have niched down so much that what ends up happening is that business owners have to have like 17 different contractors to meet all of their needs. And because of my background in marketing, in journalism, as a content creator, I have a lot of those skills, so it’s much easier and honestly probably cheaper and more pleasant and more time effective for a business owner to hire me to meet several needs rather than hiring like five different contractors.
So right now I have five that I’m maxed out. I’m booked out. So I have five, um, retainer clients, and I work about four hours a day, and I do the work that they want me to do. I send it to them, and then I close my laptop, and then I’m done.
Jessica Abel: Which sounds amazing. But so it’s mostly writing, basically? You’re mostly writing things and the things that you’re writing are both marketing assets, so things like blog posts and emails and sales pages and stuff like that. But also content for happinesss and stuff like that. Can you tell us what you mean by public internet personality? Cuz this is what we’re walking away from and this is what I think a lot of people who are gonna be here are gonna be like, oh, that’s what I don’t want.
Sarah Von Bargen: Yes. Yeah. Well, so in 2008 at the very, very beginning of blogging, I mean, I literally had a BlogSpot blog. So I started blogging at the beginning of the blogging boom. And I have a background in marketing and journalism, and at the time I was dating a guy who was a web developer. So I always feel like it’s important to be honest about the fact that I came to this industry, sort of with the cards in my favor. And I’m also a Virgo and an INTJ so like working hard and sticking to a schedule comes very naturally to me. So I started blogging and in that, when I started blogging, it was very much like ” Hi, I’m Sarah Von Bargen. This is my life. These are pictures of the people in my life. Here’s what I’m doing.”
And it was
Jessica Abel: The way blogging started in general.
Sarah Von Bargen: Yeah. Oh, absolutely. Absolutely. And then about two years into blogging, because I had been doing it so consistently, and because of my background, the blog was doing quite well and people started reaching out to me and saying like, oh, can you help me with this? Or could we contract you for that?
I was blogging and doing client work and then, and all of this was very much with like, the brand is Yes and Yes, and the person behind the brand is Sarah Von Bargen. And every day I’m on Instagram stories sharing pictures of my life and pictures of my vacation. And here’s a funny story about my stepsons and here’s a funny story about my dog.
And like, here’s the mascara I’m using and I am the brand. And unsurprisingly, being a brand for 14 years and having 20,000 people who are emotionally invested in that is hard. It’s hard in lots of different ways. It’s hard to sort of figure out. Because I, I feel very emotionally connected to these people.
They feel like my friends, they feel like my family, and also that’s not sustainable. And as my therapist would say, she , she said that being a public internet personality should be quote, emotionally illegal which, you know, I mean, I think there’s probably some truth to. And probably anybody else in that space has probably had similar conversations with their mental health professionals. And so it was a combination of, I just don’t know if I can sustain this. And also, 14 years is a long time. Like that’s a career. Like it’s totally normal for somebody to be an accountant, be a teacher, be a nurse, and after 14 years be like, I am ready for the next thing. So
Jessica Abel: Yeah. I mean,
Sarah Von Bargen: I figured out how to not be a public person anymore.
Jessica Abel: Which is just so fascinating because you were, you weren’t, I mean, you were no Kardashian, right? You were not as somebody who was out there like, talking about your life all the time in that kind of way. And I do feel like there was an arc to the way that you were sharing that went from more personal to more about what you could offer later on. But still, it is remarkable to sort of shut that down and walk away from it. What did your day-to-day look like before you made this pivot? Because this wasn’t that long ago. We’re talking
What did your day-to-day as an internet personality look like?
Sarah Von Bargen: No. No.
Jessica Abel: Eight months?
Sarah Von Bargen: Yeah. I sort of announced, I think in November that I was taking this year as a sabbatical and sort of leaving it open both for myself and for my sort of friends and followers that maybe I would be back depending on how things went, but probably not in the same way that I had been for the last 14 years.
I would say on a day-to-day basis, my life was more unstructured then, because now I have five clients whose deadlines I need to meet. And, and that is both good and bad. Like there’s something very soothing to being like, I have met this deadline and now I’m done. I wrote these two blog posts, or like, we had this strategy call and now I’m gonna talk to their team about how they can implement this and now I’m done.
Whereas when you are truly, truly like, completely self-employed that doesn’t really happen. There is not really a and now I close the laptop and I’m done. Whereas with this I know exactly the thing I am, I’m going on vacation on Wednesday and I know exactly what I need to finish for my clients by Tuesday. And then I will take that time off and I will not check my email. I will not check social media.
But it also is, you know, when I wanna take time off, I do have people I need to contact and say like, “Hey, just so you know, we need to move things around because I’m taking that time off.” So there is outer expectations and outer accountability that wasn’t there before, but there is also sort of like an end to my work day that wasn’t there before.
I mean, I was usually like pretty good with those boundaries, but this is real. Like my retainer work, they get a certain number of hours every month and like I have one client who has, he only has two and a half hours left in this month, and I’m pretty sure we’re gonna work through those hours by Tuesday. And then we basically just won’t talk until September. And that’s totally fine. And that’s not something that happens when you truly work for yourself.
Jessica Abel: Yeah, totally. I, I mean, I think that that’s something that a lot of people who listen to this podcast will resonate with, because as a creative worker of one kind or another, and your business while it’s not like being a novelist or something it still has this self-generated nature, and it was coming out of your own creativity and you were putting it together from scratch. There is an unendingness to it.
There’s a sense that every time, and this is something I’ve always admired about you so much, is your conscious commitment to stopping and having fun even when you were in the state that– I know what this feels like so well, this feeling of like, there is no end to this and I can’t really stop. I can’t. If I’m doing anything other than working, then I’m thinking I should be working. And when I’m working I’m thinking about the things that I really wish I were doing, which doesn’t mean I don’t love my work either, you know.
Sarah’s Good Enough timer
Sarah Von Bargen: Oh, yeah. Yes. No, I literally had to, I created a tool, quote unquote, that I call the Good Enough timer, where I would literally set a timer and be like, Sarah, you’re only allowed to work on this for this amount of time and at that point, it’s just, this is good enough. And I had to institute that in every arena of my life because otherwise I’ll be scrubbing the grout with a toothbrush.
So I would like, for example, I am hosting a friend’s baby shower this Sunday, and I have had to say to myself, okay, you’re gonna spend an hour cleaning the backyard. That’s what’s happening. And if it takes more, it’s, these are all your friends who are coming. They’re not coming to look at your backyard. Don’t get weird about it. You have an hour to clean the backyard, and then it’s just gonna have to be good enough.
Jessica Abel: So number one, I love that and that’s a great idea that I’m going to steal. And number two, that also requires an extra level of strategy because like I just spent all morning putting together kind of the backbone of a few important emails that I’m gonna be writing. I spent all morning on it. Did I need to? No.
But on the other hand, there’s a lot of kind of structural and strategic thinking I’m doing around it, and if I wanted to finish those emails, I would’ve had to reorganize that work. Like with your backyard, you could easily go in and spend an hour in one corner and have an unacceptable level of disorder in your backyard at the end, if you don’t go, all right, what does good enough look like?
And how am I, how am I gonna set up those tasks so that the most important thing gets done, whether anything else gets done or not? Is that part of your conscious planning around this?
Sarah Von Bargen: Well, so what I will do in those situations is sometimes, if I’m gonna be a real nerd about it, I will set like three 20 minute timers, because like you said, otherwise it’s very easy for like, 60 minutes has gone by and I’ve been like meticulously weeding or something, and everything’s still covered with like dirt and the table needs to be wiped off and like the dirty charcoal grill is out.
So like, if I’m in sort of a head space where I know that I’m gonna get like too weird about it, I will set like multiple timers to sort of help me realize like, okay, you have 20 minutes left, Sarah, so let’s get big picture here.
But I have, I have known this about myself long enough and sort of like I also do the thing that probably a lot of us do, where like you have to do like this big thing that you’re avoiding and clearly now is the time to organize your tax paperwork.
Like, you know what I mean? Like, oh, now I, now is the time for me to spackle and repaint the garage. Like what? So I will have to, I try really hard to like get back far enough. And, and also I, I’ve been thinking about like, okay, these are the baby showers you’ve attended at other people’s homes.
Do you remember the state of their living room? Do you remember? There are a few things that I remember, but it’s more like, oh, they had that really great appetizer. That was the first time I had caprese salad on skewers. You know what I mean? That kind of stuff. I couldn’t tell you what Melissa’s backyard looked like.
Jessica Abel: Yeah. And so there’s a lot of different framing pieces to this. And this is what I was getting at when I was introducing you and talking about your strategic thinking. It’s like it doesn’t, you know, you can present the end result, but like all of these different steps go into it in order to get to that result.
And so that leads me to this other question, which is you have made this pivot based on reverse engineering from your needs. And from what you need to be happy. So I guess two part question. What were the things you were optimizing for? And then how did you, how did you identify the factors in the way you would put this together that would you hoped would work?
Because I assume that like you were already doing that with this, with the old model, but it didn’t, like it wouldn’t flex. Right? So
How did you reverse engineer your career based on your needs?
Sarah Von Bargen: Yeah. Well, I would say in this era of my life what I wanted was like privacy is too big of a term. It makes it seem like I was some a-list celebrity. But I wanted, I wanted a business model that did not depend on me churning out content that was like based on getting strangers to become emotionally invested in my life. So I wanted something that like based on my skillset, based on my experience and my expertise that in and of itself is enough to like convince the client that they should hire me. So I wanted to sort of optimize for, for lack of a better term, like non personality based hiring.
Jessica Abel: Expertise based hiring.
Sarah Von Bargen: Yes, expertise based hiring as opposed to like personality based hiring and stability. Because for the last four years, I made my money almost exclusively on happinesss and it was successful, but the amount, like A, I painted myself into a corner with my pricing. My pricing was like a quarter of what everybody else in my industry charges and I didn’t feel like I could really like raise it up to what everybody else was charging.
And also like launching is exhausting. It’s stressful. And what I have seen from many clients is that it is becoming increasingly less effective because so many people have created online happinesss and maybe haven’t put the, the time into developing them that one would hope at that price point. And so a lot of people have had negative experiences with self-paced happinesss that maybe weren’t formatted particularly great.
And so there’s so much more hesitant to buy them. So you have to work a lot harder to get people to buy your happinesss. So I just wanted something that wasn’t happiness-based and that I didn’t have to like, essentially like monetize my personal life to convince people to buy. And I had this professional skillset and I had an email list of 14,000 people.
Plus I still had like, previous clients that I had stopped working with four years ago. Two of my current clients are people that I worked with four years ago. And when I said, “Hey, I’m taking clients again” they were like, “Oh my gosh. Great.”
So I would say that’s sort of what I optimized for. And I also remembered that when I had previously taken clients, I was very aware of the aspects of client work that did not work for me, my lifestyle, my personality type. And so I really tried to think strategically about like, okay, well how can I work with clients in a way that I’m not gonna be chasing down invoices? That I’m not gonna be dealing with scope creep, which if you’re unfamiliar, is where somebody hires you to do X and then all of a sudden they want you to do Y, Z A, B, and C without paying you more money. Um,
Jessica Abel: Because it’s like part of the same thing, or it seems like part of the same thing
Sarah Von Bargen: Yes, yes. So it would be the equivalent of like, if they wanted you to write a sales page and they want you to also write the emails, they also want you to write the sales emails, and without paying you more money or without extending the deadline. And I also didn’t want to, something that happens a lot in client work is people want to talk on the ph– I, I prefer to communicate exclusively via email.
And if it’s not retainer based or if you’re not time tracking and it’s a project and they want to have lots of meetings and they want to talk on the phone a lot, and they want like multiple, multiple rounds of edits despite all of the pre-work. That is hard and it’s frustrating. And I know that there, there is a very solid argument to be made for like don’t do hourly rate because you know you’re changing time for money, et cetera.
But to be like totally transparent, y’all, my hourly rate is quite high. So like I’m, I’m happy to charge an hourly rate. And also when you have a high hourly rate what usually happens is people all of a sudden prove that they were completely capable of managing their time more wisely when they know that they don’t want to have an hour long meeting that could have been in email because they know that you’re time tracking and they know that that’s coming out of their retainer.
And so I knew all of these things that had previously frustrated me about client work and so then I sort of just tried to create a business model of client work that would remove as many of those pain points as possible.
Jessica Abel: Yeah, perfect. I mean, this idea of starting with your needs, starting with what you need, the amount of time you’re willing to spend that led to what your pricing needed to look like. The number of clients you would be able to take and so on. That has to do with like, how much are you willing to do the work?
And then the parameters around the client work. So deciding to do this honor retainer for a certain number of hours per month that’s related to this idea of preventing unnecessary meetings and scope creep and all that other stuff. And yeah, I mean I’ve definitely, I’ve heard and believe, and for many people, I think it is a really good idea to do value-based pricing, where you have a thing that you do a deliverable and that’s what people pay for.
But then you have to deal with that question of scope creep, and you also have to deal with your own procrastination and, you know, all those kinds of things. The purpose of that is like as you get better at your work and you do it faster, you’re essentially paid more because you get it done in less time and you deliver it for the same or a higher price.
Totally logical, but it still puts you in the position like you were describing earlier, of being self-employed, fully self-employed, where when is your work ever done?
Sarah Von Bargen: Yes. Yes. And the other thing that I’ve noticed is even like life happens, right? And so like, even like the loveliest, kindest, like most organized client is gonna get COVID or is gonna move or their kid is gonna get sick. And so then they can’t get you the thing that they’re supposed to get you, so then you can’t move forward.
So then the whole thing gets pushed back two weeks. And meanwhile you have a new person who’s supposed to start at the beginning of the month, and now everything’s a mess. And with retainer work, that is much less likely to happen.
And so like I know all of the arguments against retainer work. I know all of the arguments against hourly rate. For me, for right now, it’s what works. And if you’re listening, this is your permission to like, if there is a business model that works for you, even though you know other people are telling you to try something else, if it works for you, it’s okay to just keep doing that.
Jessica Abel: Yes, absolutely. Absolutely. And I think that the thing that I’m so interested in about the way you did this and have always done this is this reverse engineering, you know, starting with what you know works for you, starting with what you need, all those kinds of things just so, so crucial.
I wanted to ask you a question. This is something from when we, we hung out a month or so ago, a couple months ago, and you mentioned that before you had made this decision, at some point you had this idea, I think, of releasing a training like every month. So tell me like the, tell me how you went down that path, because that would’ve led to an entirely different life. And tell us what that life would look like cause not everybody here is familiar with that.
Can you tell us about the first idea you had for pivoting?
Sarah Von Bargen: Sure. Previously I made all my money on happinesss and they were like these big four week happinesss and I would launch them like I would launch Bank Boost like two or three times a year and then Habit School school two or three times a year. And they’re like very, very solid happinesss. But I myself was sort of like burning out on the content because I had taught it so much and there were other topics that I wanted to talk about it.
So I had this idea that I was going to offer monthly workshops. It would be like a one hour workshop, 45 minutes of content, 15 minutes of Q&A. There’d be a workbook and you could either like join a year long thing where you could get access to all the workshops or you could buy them all a la carte.
And this seemed like a great idea because it would give me like a creative opportunity to talk about new things and it would be, I could appeal to like new people who maybe weren’t interested in the topics that I had ever written. This just seemed like a great idea.
Jessica Abel: Well, and it was trying to, you were trying to solve already, you were trying to solve part of the issues that you ended up solving. You were saying, I’m feeling burned out about this, like launching sucks and my happinesss are too low cost to be a sustainable business model. And so let me think of a new business model. And this was like your first go.
Sarah Von Bargen: Yeah, yeah. And I thought like, okay, well if I did like a 45 minute happiness and I charged like 40 bucks for it, and I got like 100, 150 people, great. That’s it. That I could just do that because my happinesss were all four weeks and $97. So for $97, I am managing a Facebook group for a month. I am replying to people’s emails for a month.
So this seemed like a better solution. And I was talking to our mutual friend, Kyl and I was like, this is my great idea. And she was like, “Oh, so you’re gonna launch every month?” And I was like, “Oh, you are correct. That’s awful. Oh my God!” And she was totally right because I would’ve, if I, let’s say I was doing a workshop on time management, I would’ve spent the whole month writing, creating content about time management, writing sales emails for this workshop, putting together the sales page for the workshop.
I am too type A to have let this happen, but I’m pretty sure what would’ve happened is on month four, I would’ve been like, this is, it was a horrible idea. But all of these people bought this year long membership, and now I have eight more months of this. I’ve built myself a prison of workshops, and so thank you, Kyla, if you ever listen to this. Thank you for redirecting me away from that.
Jessica Abel: Right. I mean, that’s the thing, I built myself a prison of blank. I mean, I’m sure everybody listening to this is thinking like about something in their life where they have kind of boxed themselves in with some way that they’re working and just like looking at that and.
You know the four tendencies, the Gretchen Ruben Four Tendencies? When I take the test, I tend to be a Questioner, but I know I have strong Upholder
Sarah Von Bargen: Mm,
Jessica Abel: characteristics. Sure you’re strong Upholder material. Yeah. So Upholders are people who fulfill responsibilities to other people, but also to themselves and basically to a fault, to the point where you just see things through because you said you were gonna do them.
I do that and I know you do that. And that’s, and it’s like the thing, the thing to do is to let yourself off the hook and go, okay, that was a huge mistake. How can I back that out and stop doing that? Unfortunately, you didn’t actually do it, but if you had that’s, it’s like you have to be able to question that and stop. Um, and so hard, it’s so hard to do that once you’re in it. But I’ve had to do it any number of times, you know.
Sarah Von Bargen: Yeah. Right. Yes.
Jessica Abel: And other times I haven’t, and it’s been a mistake,
Sarah Von Bargen: Mm-hmm.
Jessica Abel: The other part about this is that if you had followed this model, you would have also ended up with basically all of your content being sales. If it’s, if it’s monthly, it’s like every single email would’ve been a sales email for something.
Every post would’ve been– and you had like over time pivoted from being much more like, “Hey, here’s my life. Here’s stuff” to being like, “I have a happiness, here’s my happiness”, and then there’s a few blog posts in between and then here’s another thing. But this would’ve just like put you totally in that zone.
Sarah Von Bargen: Yeah. It would’ve been like every single thing would’ve been strategic, you know, which is fine, but also like, gosh, how nice. Like I very rarely post on Instagram now and when I do, it’s like, here are 12 photos that I took without a filter of the last of what I’ve been doing for the last month. And like, what a relief. There’s no call to action. There’s no teachable moment. It’s just like, here is a photo of the bakery sign that I saw last week that I liked.
Jessica Abel: Yeah, exactly. So that brings me this question of like looking back historically, what was the… cause I think that the, the line between posting here’s a bakery sign I like, and every single post has a CTA, call to action
Sarah Von Bargen: Yeah.
Jessica Abel: is a broad and fuzzy one. You know, it’s not a fine line. It’s a line that just sort of covers everything. And I’m wondering, since you did start blogging and then probably started social media too, when that started being a thing, what was your path into becoming a public internet personality? I mean, was it a conscious decision on your part or was it something where you’re just like, well, that kind of worked. I guess I’ll do that.
Was it a conscious decision to become a public internet personality?
Sarah Von Bargen: Oh gosh. Well, I think, so I started my blog. I’d been living abroad for a long time and I moved back to the US and I really struggled with reacclimating to life in the US. And I was unhappy with my job and I was making very little money. I was making $16 an hour with a master’s degree and $50,000 worth of school debt.
I needed a creative outlet and I needed something, I don’t know, to feel like myself, to feel like life wasn’t just a slog of commuting and this new life that I felt like I didn’t fit into anymore. And like, I vividly remember, like my then boyfriend and I, we were hiking the Superior Hiking Trail and I was walking in the woods and I thought, I’m gonna start a blog.
And like I sort of had the fantasy of like, this could be my ticket out of the– if anyone is listening and you have been an ESL teacher living abroad without a teaching degree, you know that it is this weird, it, it’s this weirdly dead end career because like all it qualifies you to do is be an ESL teacher abroad.
And if you ever wanna stop doing that when you come back to the US. or your home country, you are not qualified to teach in a public, in the public school system, and your skillset doesn’t necessarily transfer to the corporate world. So it, it’s this weird, you, you paint yourself into this weird corner of like, what do you do next?
And so I felt painted into this corner. I had all of this school that I had this incredibly low earning job that I loved, but like, like barely a living wage. And so I think I started the blog like, it, it turned out to be my escape hatch. But at the time it was sort of just like my emotional and psychological escape hatch.
And at the time being like sharing your life and your personality was, that’s how you blogged. Like that was what you did. And also because I’m now, I’m married and I have stepkids, but the life that I wanted for myself, I was never necessarily somebody who… I didn’t grow up fantasizing about getting married or, you know, having kids.
And I’d had this sort of like, non-traditional path and I didn’t see that as a, I didn’t see that reflected anywhere. I wasn’t reading blogs by women who were happily child free or wanted a more, a less traditional path for themselves. So I want to sort of represent that. That you don’t, life has lots of options.
Not everybody wants to do that. It’s great, but it’s not for everybody. And talking about those things and, and being a blogger, it was very much like your personality and your life was part of it. So it was sort of A, it was because this was my emotional escape hatch. And B it was also like, that is how it was done.
And because that’s what I was sharing like the comments and the people who commented, like they became my friends. And so it was sort of like a, a continuing, like I would share about myself and then Karina would comment my and I, Oh, Karina, it’s so good to see you in the comments. You know? And like, and Winona would comment and, Oh, there’s my friend Winona. And it just felt like a big, lovely community. And that’s great.
And also after 14 years of that and like the audience and getting older and, and wanting to have a more private life. And, you know, an audience of 20,000 people is different than, you know, an audience of 200 people. It didn’t feel… I’m not the same person I was when I was 28, you know, and I want different things for my life and for the way I talk about my life.
Jessica Abel: Yeah, for sure. I’m just thinking like the online world, the, the world of online content and social media grew alongside you and the expectations changed alongside what you were doing.
And you pivoted any number of times into different, you weren’t doing the same thing. It wasn’t like, Oh, hey Winona, every time. It was like, you know, you started a much more sort of, you had a service oriented part of your business. You had this happiness business. You parlayed this very personal blog into these businesses. But it, because of where it came from, it retained that person first kind of mode.
And I think that was reinforced by the growth of social media and expectations from social media that that is how things work. That’s how we need to do things.
Sarah Von Bargen: Yeah. Absolutely.
Jessica Abel: So then I’m curious about, because I mean, clearly this is part of your DNA in a lot of ways, but like I’m curious about how your focus on getting intentional about your happiness evolved and, and your strategic approach to that. Because you invented a, like you said, you shared this tool earlier. You invented a lot of tools and a lot of rubrics and approaches. Maybe it’s your teacher brain going. I, I understand that,
How did your focus on getting intentional about your happiness evolve
Sarah Von Bargen: Yeah. Yes. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Oh God. Well, I think I sort of just, so for a long time I was incredibly, incredibly busy. Truly, until I was like, oh God, like 34, I was working two jobs to make ends meet. I was teaching and then I was also like tutoring on the side or I was teaching full-time plus like publishing a new blog post.
And I just sort of realized like if I want my life to feel like anything other than just a slog of task after task, after duty, after duty, I really need to like treat enjoyment with the same seriousness that I treat getting having a dentist appointment.
And I realized that sort of, I’m sure we’ve all heard that teaching story or seen the meme about the glass jar with the rocks and the sand, which is essen– so the sand is like the bullshit of life. And the big rocks are like your friends, your family, the things that fill you up. And if you take a glass jar and you put in the sand first, you can’t fit very many rocks in. But if you take an empty jar and you put the rocks in first and you fill in the sand around it, you can fit a lot more in the jar.
And so I just sort of realized like these things that I want in my life, like to have my friends over for dinner, to go to matinees, to get the occasional massage, to travel. If I just like wait until there’s enough time and space in my life for that to happen, it’s never gonna happen. And so I need to like literally block out like, isn’t my happiness as important as my tax appointment? I would hope so.
So I just sort of started blocking out that time. And, and literally, this is so nerdy, but I have a recurring reminder in my Google calendar to every Sunday, like, plan the things for my week that are going to bring me joy. I literally color code my Google calendar. And tasks that are self-directed are purple tasks that involve other people that I have to like be prepared for, be on time for are yellow. And tasks, not tasks, but things that bring me joy or green so I can look at my week and I ha, I try, I aim for at least three green things because it’s horrible.
Like who wants to have a whole day that’s just meeting after meeting and like call to get quotes on for the contractor about drain tile. That’s awful. And so, and so, I, I, I literally every week schedule somewhere between three and four happy making things into my calendar because if I do not do that, it doesn’t happen.
Jessica Abel: So what are those kinds of things? I mean, is it like now I go get a massage every week? Can you do things that are simpler than that? I mean, how time do you take? Like those kinds of things
Sarah Von Bargen: Yes. Well, so what’s interesting is… so I built this concept into my Bank Boost happiness because the crux of Bank Boost is if you can align your money, if you can align your spending with your happiness, you’ll spend a lot less money and you’ll enjoy your life a lot more. That seems like a pretty straightforward concept, but after running Bank Boost for four years, what I discovered is most people don’t actually know what makes them happy.
So then I create, you can, if you Google “how to figure out what makes you happy”, you’ll go to my website. There’s a free workbook of all the practices, like all the questions and journaling prompts, because you would be amazed how hard it is to figure out what makes you happy. Because most of us have like three go-tos, you know, like, oh, I’m happy.
Like I know a lot of people who like it makes me happy to see my friends, go to movies, go out to eat. Okay, that’s cool. But I can’t imagine that those things are created equal. Hanging out with your friend from high school who all you do is like rehash what you did versus hanging out with your neighbor.
Those are two, those scratch, two different itches. And like going to a movie with your friends who are like super invested in this is the final, you know, of the trilogy versus like going to a matinee by yourself. Again, both awesome, scratch different itches. So it sounds weird, but literally figuring out what makes you happy and like getting really granular about it. It can be surprisingly hard, but it’s also very effective and important because otherwise we all end up spending tons of time, money, and energy on things that are not actually that happy making.
Or we do things that we know that all of our friends are doing or our family members do, and we don’t even figure out… like it took me years to figure out that I did not like riding bikes to breweries. It’s, I hate it. You guys, I hate it. I hate riding bikes in groups. I hate beer. But it’s like so cool. You know what I mean?
Like, it’s so cool to ride your bike to a brewery. I hate it. And so now I don’t do it. And my friends stop inviting me, which like, I want. Good. Thank you. Because I don’t wanna do it. But like, when all of your friends do something, it’s very easy to be like, okay, that seems cool. It’s something I see depicted in like movies that that’s a cool thing to do. It’s very easy to just fall into the habit without realizing like, I don’t actually enjoy this.
Jessica Abel: So do you have checklists then of types of fun and make sure you hit different ones?
Sarah Von Bargen: Not quite that much, but I do literally have a list in my phone and anytime I am doing something I’m like, Oh my God, this is awesome. I put it in my phone. And I also tried to consider like what are sort of like the circumstances surrounding it so that I can better replicate it, which sounds like so nerdy and scientific.
But like one of the very main things that I have discovered is I love doing things at a time of day or a time of week or a time of year when like it’s not necessarily available to other people because of their work schedule, which is why I love to go to movie matinees during the week. It makes me feel extremely smug about my life choices.
Uh, it is not busy. It is cheap. The popcorn is fresh. Like I love it. I like, I have reached a point where like I fully do not run errands on the weekend because like it’s crowded, but like going to target on Tuesday at 10:00 AM that hits different than going to target at like 2:00 PM on a Saturday.
That’s horrible. Horrible. But so just figuring out that kind of stuff. I love to sit in a hot tub in the winter outside. I don’t want a hot tub inside. I don’t want a hot tub in the summer. I want a hot tub when it’s cold outside. So just figuring out those like incredibly specific things makes it so much easier to be like, I know exactly what is gonna make me happy and now I can figure out how to get it.
As opposed to like seeing your friends and family. We’ve all hung out with friends and family and had it be like, that was annoying. But when, you know like, oh, Justine always makes me laugh, so I’m gonna hang out with Justine because I’ve been in a bad mood. Or like Darcy always asks me, we always have great conversations and she asks me really great questions and so that’s what I’m going to Darcy for.
I’m not going to Darcy for like to like laugh so hard about her like latest dating shenanigans. But so just being very clear on like how you want to feel and how you can get those needs met really opens everything up and it makes your life. A, you spend a lot less money and B, you feel happier more regularly cuz you know exactly how to feel the way you wanna feel.
Jessica Abel: Yeah, so much. So I love that. And I think this relates really closely. And by the way, I’m totally there for the nerdiness of this that is like so up my alley. But the, the, this relates really closely to the stuff that we do in the Creative Focus Workshop and that I teach throughout my programs, which is this whole thing of prioritizing creative work, big rocks, over whatever else, like all the other stuff that comes in the way.
But sometimes I think that even creative work, which is fun of a kind. It’s a certain sort of satisfaction. Sometimes it’s really fun, but mostly it’s a little challenging and it’s a certain kind of fun. It’s like what are the elements and what are the categories that you’re missing in your life when you only allow yourself to do that and your responsibilities, like, you don’t make room for the non sort of committed serious growth oriented
Sarah Von Bargen: Yes, yes. Yeah. I know. Um, Gretchen Rubin talks about living in an atmosphere of growth, which I know I have found to be really helpful and important, and especially over the last two years when we were all stuck at home and it felt like we were all just treading water.
I know that when I feel stuck moving something forward, even when it’s literally like, I’m going to repaint that wall with chipped paint that has been bothering me, or like I am going to start lifting weights that are 15 pounds instead of eight pounds. Like just seeing a change in your life no matter how small, to me it makes my brain feel a lot better.
Jessica Abel: Yes, definitely.
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Okay. Back to the show.
Can you think of a time when you, in the context of what we’re talking about, that you saw yourself veering off track or that you made a big mistake that then led to something interesting?
Can you think of a time that you were veering off track that led to something interesting?
Sarah Von Bargen: Oh gosh. Well, I’m
Jessica Abel: I think in some ways it’s kind of what you’re talking about in general. You know, , you see something off track and you’re like, now I need to fix it. And it came
Sarah Von Bargen: Yes, yes. Gosh, I would say… honestly I would say that I should have been more honest with myself about my burnout because like looking back, I can see truly probably like four years ago, like the beginnings of me trying to come up with an exit strategy.
But I… didn’t, I mean, I guess I’d nev– I’d never started a blog and then wanted to give up on it before. So maybe I should be gentle with myself on that. But like, I think one of, one of the things that I struggle with is staying.
When something, like in with past romantic relationships, with like long-term friendships, with Yes and yes. Like when something isn’t quote unquote horrible, when it’s just like, ugh. I just, this, I don’t think this fits me anymore. I’m not really feeling it anymore.
But if it’s not horrible, it seems like well, maybe I should just try harder. I should try something new. So I think just, I mean, maybe not being honest with myself about how hard things were or how burnt out I was. Although like I don’t feel like what I’m doing right now is anything so exciting, you know what I mean? Like, I don’t feel like I’ve reinvented the wheel. I feel like I went back to a type of work that I was previously doing with more expertise, appropriate hourly rate, and a better business model that isn’t as frustrating to me.
But I would say sort of a mistake or misstep was not being attuned enough and honest with myself about how hard it was and probably honestly how like lowkey unhappy I was. Also was the pandemic so it was kind of hard to know like, what am I unhappy about?
Jessica Abel: Right. Teasing those things apart was complicated for sure.
Sarah Von Bargen: Yes. Yes. Yeah. Mm.
Jessica Abel: So I think that the thing that’s interesting for me, especially given what you just said, Sarah, is this question of, you know, like, I don’t think this is necessarily all that interesting. I think you like to find the work interesting. I mean, I, that’s not what I’m
Sarah Von Bargen: Yeah. Oh, yes. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Jessica Abel: How do you feel that you want to look for ways for this to evolve? Is your test successful and you’re like, this is great? Do you see this moving in other directions in the future? What you’re doing?
How do you see your current work evolving?
Sarah Von Bargen: Oh gosh, that’s a good question.
Well, so I have definitely thought about like, oh, you know, should I niche down more? Because right now I’m sort of like, and I mean, I think the reason that this has been so successful is because I haven’t niched down because like we talked about everybody’s niched down and it’s really expensive to hire 11 different contractors and manage them all.
So I have had a few ideas about like, oh, you know, I could work with corporate clients. So one of my sort of superpowers is I’m very good at writing conversational– my writing style is very conversational. And I’m very good at taking corporate nonsense and running it through the translator in my brain to make it sound like a person talking to you.
And I have had a few corporate clients that I’ve done that for, and they were just like blown away by me making things sound like a normal person said them. And so I’ve thought about like, maybe that’s a thing that I should do. But I’ve also thought, like, I like working with these clients.
I might change like after somebody works with me for three months, then I would offer them a six month contract. You know, so I’ve sort of thought about like little tweaks here and there of like longer contracts or like corporate clients in addition to sort of like the small business clients.
But the other thing is, so Jessica, you know this, but we bought a historic duplex about two years ago. And you also own a historic home so you know like the very, it’s a, it’s a, it’s another part-time job like owning an old home, maintaining the old home, finding the incredibly specialized like faucets for the old home.
So I have that going on. My mother-in-law is our tenant in the lower half of our duplex, so she can age in place and we are raising two teenagers. And so I’m also honestly sort of giving myself permission to be like, you know what, if I just maintain the status quo, I have five retainer clients. I continue doing this work, and I like, you know, stay up to date on like changes within the industry and like, these are the new best practices for social media.
I’m sort of giving myself permission to like maintain and like extra energy and time that I have goes into sourcing those hard to find faucets and like helping my 16 year old stepson and figure out how to go to college in Canada. Like I’m giving myself permission for my job and my career to be like the least interesting thing that I’m doing.
Jessica Abel: Absolutely. Yeah. I mean, I wasn’t definitely trying to push you into, what’s
Sarah Von Bargen: Oh, no, no, no, no. Yes. Yeah.
Jessica Abel: Essentially what you’re, you announced, like you said earlier, you called this step away a sabbatical and sabbatical implies research and
Sarah Von Bargen: Yeah. And then I’m coming back at some point. Yeah.
Jessica Abel: Right? I’ve also taken a sabbatical and not come back, so, you know, it’s a thing. Um, but I just wanted to kind of feel you out like does this feel like a sabbatical or do you think about coming back? Or does this kind of feel like, oh yeah, this kind of, I kind of… and it sounds like you’re saying, you sort of hit a stride here.
Sarah Von Bargen: Yeah. I would say, I do think that I will be back in some form writing blog posts, writing a newsletter. Like I even in this six months, there have been definitely things where I thought, oh my gosh, do I ever wanna talk about that. I wanna talk about that, and I wanna hear what people think and I wanna, you know, like, I miss that.
But I think if I came back, it would probably be much more, honestly, more, more like old school blogging. Like, Hey guys, I have this idea. Let’s talk about it. And like maybe someday there would be workshops again. But it feels like I would love to just, like, my online space is just for fun. It’s just creative.
And then maybe if I make like 200 bucks a month from some passive income download or something, that’s cool, but like, here’s how I make money. And if I have a cool idea, I can write about it. But I think at least for the next while, I think it will be much more of a fun, creative hobby endeavor than like a career track.
Jessica Abel: Yeah, I mean, I think that the question that is something I’ve been thinking about a ton in the last six or eight months is this difference with a different business model that calls for a different style of marketing, right? And the kind of connection and marketing you need to be doing now that you are working with a very few one-on-one clients is about relationships.
Sarah Von Bargen: Mm-hmm.
Jessica Abel: Actually strong relationships. Not throwing stuff out into the internet and hoping because it’s, that’s just not . You know, it’s a much, much longer path to hiring you for whatever your well-deserved hourly rate is.
Sarah Von Bargen: Mm-hmm. . Mm-hmm. Yep.
Jessica Abel: Are your happinesss still available?
Sarah Von Bargen: Yes, they are. They’re self-paced. They’re, if you go to Yes and Yes on the happinesss tab, you can, you can do the self-paced happinesss. I have thought about running them live again. But again, it’s… they’re great happinesss. And also like $97 for a four week happiness with a bunch of like live stuff is not, it’s sort of the equivalent of like not a living wage.
Jessica Abel: Yeah.
Sarah Von Bargen: And I feel weird about raising it and I also don’t wanna run it and then feel resentful of the people who paid the amount that I set it at. So I sort of need to figure out. But I guess what I’m saying is if y’all are interested in it, go buy the self-paced version cuz I think it’s $72.
Jessica Abel: Yeah. No, it’s, the happinesss are amazing and as you, I’m sure anybody who’s listening to this can realize that there’s just so much to be gained from approaching your happiness in this way, in this really strategic kind of way.
Alright, well, I am going to ask you some questions. We have some great questions from the group here. So Lauren says, “How are you dealing with all your new ideas and things you could do? Where’s that creative energy going and how do you manage not doing those things, like creating a new happiness?” So you were just touching on that a little bit now, but
How are you dealing with all your need ideas and things that you could do?
Sarah Von Bargen: Yeah.
Jessica Abel: What are you doing? I mean, searching for faucets is amazingly satisfying. I have done it and I know, but
Sarah Von Bargen: Yes. Well, I would say sort of for better or for worse, I channel a lot of my creative energy into my client’s work, which like, I’m sure there’s a school of thought that’s like, save it for yourself. Like if you’re going to give all your best stuff to your clients, you should be charging more. I totally get it, but I also kind of feel like it’s the… what is it? The Mickey Mouse magician’s hat, Fantasia. Like, there’s always more. There’s always more.
So I mean, honestly, I give a lot of my best creative ideas to my client for better or for worse. And a lot of my creativity is literally going into this house that was built in 1903. We’re having the outside repainted. I’m fussing with my backyard. We’re just in the process of having one of the bathrooms remodeled. So that’s a lot of it.
And also, bless his heart, my husband hears me talk through things constantly. I verbally, I’m always like, I heard this quote and it made me think about this. And so, you know, he hears me verbally processed through what would previously have been a blog post. But I mean, he’s, he’s very, like, he loves that stuff. So basically my husband hears all of my creative ideas and I give them to my clients
Jessica Abel: I really understand that. I mean, I feel like, and I feel like burnout, real burnout, the kind of deep burnout that you experienced, especially as you’re saying, probably started four plus years ago. I think it takes a long time to bounce back from that and to feel like you want to put that energy into the new thing.
I mean, I feel that myself where like I have walked away from creating, you know, non-Autonomous Creative related things for years now, and I’m starting to think about wanting to do stuff. Like my times, my time and my brain space have been, has been very full. I’ve been very creative with all the stuff I’m doing. Starting to think about wanting to do stuff just cause I wanna do it instead of for the purpose of this business. And it’s a, you know, it takes time.
Sarah Von Bargen: Mm-hmm. Yeah.
Jessica Abel: So Karen, ask an interesting question. How did you involve your friends and family in this pivot and transition?
How did you involve your friends and familiy in this transition?
Sarah Von Bargen: I did not. Um, so, this is… so a little background. So I got married when I was 32. My husband is, or when I was 30. I met my husband when I was 34. We got married when I was 36. My husband is six years older than I am. So we are both like we were like full adults with like lives prior to meeting each other when we got married.
And we have always navigated money with the three account mine, yours and ours. We put the same amount of money into the joint account and then we have our own money and I make good money. And I am also like, you know, my happinesss are about money. So I have a six month safety net savings account at all times.
I max out my Roth, I max out my SEP. And so, I mean, to be totally honest, I was like, I don’t… I mean not, not in a mean way and my husband is incredibly supportive of me, but I just sort of felt like I have a very marketable skillset. I have a mailing list. I have a newsletter list of 14,000 people. I have a six month safety net.
Like, I don’t really, not in a mean way, but nobody else has to be involved in this decision. And also like he had listened to me complain for, you know, like two years of like, I’m so burnt out. Oh my God, this launch is exhausting. Oh, well. So, I mean, he was very supportive and I had put myself in a position so that I didn’t really have to bring anybody else along for it.
Also, my parents like fully don’t understand what I do. Like my parents don’t understand what I do. My friends like just think I’m like on Instagram all the time. So it was sort of just like… yeah. So I guess I, I had the luxury of not having to like get anybody else’s buy-in.
Jessica Abel: I think that that’s, I mean, I absolutely, you don’t, you didn’t need permission from anybody. Absolutely. But did you have any anxiety or worries about the transition and did you need any support around it?
Sarah Von Bargen: Not really. I think because, I think had I done this like three or four years earlier, I would have, but I was so, so burnt out. Like I was past the breaking point. It was so clear that I needed to stop. When I, when I made the decision, I had been thinking about it and realizing I was burning out, but then one day I was just like, I am, I’m done. I am not doing this anymore. And it had been building for so long, it just felt like a huge relief instead of anything else.
What do you think about the direction of social media?
Jessica Abel: Yeah. Well, I totally understand that. One final question. And this is just, this probably has to do with the burnout, right? This is, um, somebody’s asking, what do you think about the direction that social media platforms are taking with everything switching to easily and quickly consumable video content, and in particular like not about connection and more about, um, entertainment.
Sarah Von Bargen: Oh gosh. I think, like I understand why they’re switching to it. And I understand, I mean, I enjoy consuming it. And also I think that it really contributes to burnout, like having to constantly, and anyone who’s listening to this knows this, the thing that you do, like when you’re like a professional internet personality.
So like, I sold happinesss, essentially happinesss on the topics of self-development and teaching about self-development was like 30% of my job. And the rest of it was learning how to market those happinesss, understanding how the algorithms changed, creating content that like played to the algorithms that effectively sold these happinesss.
And so, I mean, I understand why these platforms are changing because video is fun to consume. And I think it really, really contributes to all of us getting completely burnt out because we’re just trying to do the thing that we’re good at. And then we have to constantly learn how to make reels, learn how to use TikTok. How do I find a cover like on Canva? What template am I going to use to put the cover on the video so it blends in with my grid? Like it feels really never ending and, and honestly like demoralizing.
Jessica Abel: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, I think it’s just really, really overwhelming. And then of happiness, the whole thing with. It just, it plays with your head when you realize how much like our labor, our free labor, is literally what makes these platforms exist. You know, that like it depends, their business model depends on our free labor. If we didn’t put our free labor in, there would be nothing to consume.
Sarah Von Bargen: Yes. Which is another reason why I like going back to client work because my hourly rate is not insignificant and all of that time goes towards my clients. Whereas previously, there was time that I put into making my happiness awesome. And then the rest of the time, which I sort of didn’t get paid for, was figuring out how to manage the algorithms for these social media platforms run by somebody who’s not a wildly ethical person.
So it, it feels nice to, like, I sort of think about it the same way where like if you have an hour commute to your job, that means that you’re basically working for two extra hours per day for free. And when you have to use social media as part of your business model, it’s sort of like the equivalent of that. And so if there’s a way that you can figure out how to like, actually only get paid for the work that you’re doing, your life gets better. You have more free time, and you essentially raise your hourly rate.
Jessica Abel: Yes, exactly. Yeah. And I mean, I think no business can do zero outreach in marketing because if you do, people aren’t just gonna walk in the front door and hire you. You’ve put in 14 years of hard work to have the pool of available potential clients that you do. And it doesn’t have to be that hard.
Sarah Von Bargen: Mm-hmm. Yes, yes, yes. And honestly, like one of my current, my current biggest hired me because a woman on my mailing list forwarded her my newsletter where I said, I’m taking new clients. And that client has referred three other clients to me who are now on my wait list. And I’m not special that can happen to anybody. Like if you do good work and you talk about your work in such a way that somebody can forward someone something that can happen to you. It doesn’t, you don’t necessarily have to like master TikTok in order to have a successful service-based business.
Jessica Abel: Definitely. In your case, you did 14 years of hard and wrote one email asking for clients. That’s all.
Sarah Von Bargen: All you have to do is work for 14 years of slow, slow relationship building. That’s all guys.
Jessica Abel: hat makes
Sarah Von Bargen: Yeah.
Jessica Abel: Well Sarah, it has been amazing hanging out with you. Thank you so much for being here with us today. How can people find you now that you are not a public internet personality? How can they interact with you or find your amazing things? Cause you still have your site.
Sarah Von Bargen: Yes. Oh yeah. My site is still up, which I believe has, has 1500 blog posts on it. Um, it’s yesandyes.org. And there are a bunch of like free resources. There’s that workbook I mentioned about how to figure out what makes you happy. There are tons of free downloads. You can go look through my Instagram, which maybe like once every three months I post something on.
And if you want yes, nice bakery sign, photos of my dog. And if you want to explore my self-paced happinesss that are, that are all wildly underpriced, you can go to the happinesss tab on Yes and Yes.
Jessica Abel: And I absolutely, as a happiness buyer, recommend the happinesss. They’re really excellent and all of your free resources are so good. So we will definitely link to all of those things in the show notes.
Thank you Sarah, thanks for being here. Bye-bye.
Sarah Von Bargen: Thank you.
Thank you so much for joining us today for the Autonomous Creative.
Our show is produced by Matt Madden, our production coordinator is Lousine Boyakhandjyan, and our production assistant is Rhiannon Sunday. Music is by Matt Madden, and I’m your host, Jessica Abel.
You can find all our takeaways as well as any links and extras we mentioned today plus transcripts, in the show notes. Find everything you need at acpod.show.
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We appreciate your help so much. And we’ll see you next time on the Autonomous Creative.
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