Musings from the Moonroom

Thoughts on Art, Inspiration, Creativity and Spirit

Tuesday’s Business: Blast-Off Class


Earlier this month I started working with Alyson Stanfield in her Blast Off class.  This class is designed to help artists develop a stronger foundation for their business through daily exercises (i.e. homework) and thought-provoking questions.  I worked with Alyson a few years ago when I led a group of local artists in an Art Salon.  In the Art Salon we used outlines provided by Alyson which helped us develop marketing plans for our businesses.

Thus far in the class we’ve discussed gratitude, visualizations, affirmations, blocks to progress, finances, and developing routines.  And that has just been the first 9 days!  (We take the weekends off to catch up on our homework.)

Since the beginning of the month and during the Blast Off class I’ve had three a-ha moments:

  • My packing and shipping process is time consuming and needs to be more efficient.  I wrote out each step in this process, discussed it with Eric, and brainstormed ideas for condensing or eliminating steps.
  • I hit upon an idea for renaming and repackaging a particular product.  I brainstormed with a fellow guild member and asked followers on my Twitter page for ideas which subsequently caused the “light bulb” to go off.  This really convinced me of the benefit of social networking.
  • After visiting with a vendor, another light-bulb went off in my head about a potential joint marketing idea; something that would benefit both of us.

Would any of this happened without the class?  I don’t know.  What I do know is that because I’m writing down monthly goals, writing down ideas that pop into my head, and being asked questions in the workshop, I’m taking the time to think, and to be more aware of my routines, and my surroundings.

One point that Alyson has made in the class is for us to consider our motives or reasons for why we do what we do in order to tackle tasks and goals.

How often do you do that?  Isn’t it more likely that we do what we do because that is what we’re supposed to do?  Perhaps we do what we do to meet someone’s expectation of us?  Or we stay busy all the time which must mean we’re motivated but what happens when we stop being busy?

As Alyson put it “Knowing why you want to accomplish certain things helps you prioritize and move forward” and “the things we usually put off are those that will have the biggest impact on our success.”

I faced that issue this weekend.  I’ve been putting off teaching myself to use Rapidweaver (web design tool) partly because the documentation isn’t very good and partly because I was used to using Frontpage on my former PC and the thought of learning something completely new was daunting.

Using Alyson’s suggestion, I had to ask myself: What is my motive for learning Rapidweaver? To create a brand new web site to promote my two lines of art.  What happens if I continue to put it off? I’m stuck maintaining an old web site that doesn’t represent the vision I have for my art and business.  So, again, what is my motive for learning Rapidweaver? To make a better web site that provides a better visual representation of my art.

I put my butt in the chair and started by reading the documentation out loud.  Bingo; the light bulb went off.  I gained a better understanding of how the documentation is laid out (general overview, then specific information…it still leaves a bit to be desired but now I can tolerate it.)  I learned Rapidweaver is relatively easy to use once I played around with it.  I learned the tool is easier to use than Frontpage (sorry PC folks.)  And, I have to admit, I started having fun with it and look forward to creating my new business web sites.

After taking an online workshop with Christine Kane, listening to various tele-seminars, and reading select coaching newsletters and books I’m noticing a core theme: dream, dream big, write it down, verbalize it, visualize it, get clear, set goals, take baby-steps as needed, and surround yourself with supportive people.  Alyson’s class continues to promote these themes and more.  Perhaps this message is being repeated enough for me to have faith that it really works.  Now to have faith in myself in seeing it through.

12 thoughts on “Tuesday’s Business: Blast-Off Class

  1. Amy, you wrote an excellent summary. I agree with your final paragraph. After awhile, I started spotting people in a variety of careers who were obviously not dreaming big enough and obviously limiting themselves.

    You are doing a great job with that blast off class. nancy

    • Hi Nancy,

      Thanks for your kind words. Are you in Alyson’s blast-off class? Of course right now I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed (just like she said we’d probably be feeling) with all the information. I love all the suggestions and recommendations from the class. The hard part can be choosing which bits to focus on and which to leave till later.


  2. Glad to see it is all working together and I have faith you will see it through creating an even more brilliant career for yourself!

    It has been invaluable to share in the process and see how others struggle or glide through the differing steps. Dreaming leads to doing and being. I begin again to dream.

    Special thanks to you for leading me indirectly to the blastoff class btw!

    • Hi Jen,

      Thanks for your kind words. Wow, I had no idea I directed you to Alyson’s class.

      Yes, it is interesting and reassuring to read how others are progressing through the class. As artists we’re often in a bubble and think no one else experiences the same things we do…and then to read about someone going through similar feelings, challenges, etc. It can be very enlightening and a relief too knowing we’re not alone.

      Best of luck to you too as you progress through the class and in your business.


  3. That blast-off class sounds great, Amy ! I found reading about your experience in tackling Rapidweaver to be very inspiring !

    • Thanks, Dora. It is good to hear from you! We’re half way through the class and now is when the feeling of overwhelm starts to creep in. There are so many things to think about and avenues to pursue. But I’m feeling pretty good about my direction and that is most important.


  4. Amy.. you are my hero!

  5. Amy, That was such a great summary of the class. It sounds like you are dealing with a lot of the same issues I am including the new websites. I so understood what you meant about would these things have happened if you weren’t taking the class. I am having incredible things occuring, and I don’t know if I would even have recognized the opportunities before. My eyes are definitely opening. Glad to be on the journey with you.

    • Hi Cydni,

      Thanks for your kind words. I appreciate it. Isn’t it curious how we become more aware of the opportunities around us when we open to the universe? Best of luck on your journey.


  6. Amy, this was fun to read! I’m thrilled you had a few aha moments and were able to get down to business with Rapidweaver. As a former PC/FrontPage user myself, I know it’s hard to take the leap. But it’s so worth it–as you know. Thanks for being an active, enthusiastic member of the class!

    • Hi Alyson,

      Thanks for visiting and reading my blog post. Those a-ha moments are thrilling when they happen. Your class has definitely opened me to those moments. I’m enjoying the Blast-Off class and intend to carry what I learn with me throughout the year.


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