October 2019: Four lessons learnt in the first four weeks of start-up

Around four weeks ago we launched Write the World notebooks. In that time we’ve raised more than $3,000 for The Life You Can Save to donate to effective charities. In that time I’ve also learnt a heap of things I didn’t expect to. It could almost become a book, but for the moment, here’s just four of them…

Social media is ok: it’s a sign of my age I know, and the fact that I mostly approach social media through a very wary parental lens, but up until the last few months I was pretty negative towards online networking. I knew I would have to embrace it for this project, but I was skeptical. Would I get sucked into a social media vortex never to be seen with (what) sanity (I have) intact again?

Yet, to the contrary, social media has been ace. It has allowed me to connect with people I never would have been able to otherwise, to spread the word, and reach out to people who may be interested in the project. Overwhelmingly, every single interaction I’ve had on social media has been positive and a force for good.

You get it and you’re in: I have been a little overwhelmed by the people – some I knew before the project, most I didn’t – who have said ‘yep, great idea, I’ll support that’. It seems like it’s a project that if you ‘get it’, you’re happy to help. From website development to notebook design, from social media tips to spreading the word, from artist collaboration to photography – the project is benefiting from an extremely generous, virtual village upbringing.

Strings of hope: having said that, there are many people I’ve approached about Write the World – many of them complete long shots – who I haven’t heard back from. And that’s ok. My coach [get one! so good! email me for the contact details of mine!] introduced me to the ‘strings of hope’ theory. I’m pretty sure she had a more official name for it, but ‘strings of hope’ is the way I now think of it…

This may not be the original description of the theory but the way it works for me is this: if you want to get from A (where you are now) to B (your goal for the future), and you only have one way or hope for getting there, well, if that doesn’t pay off, you’re… let’s say… not going to make it.

But if you have many ways of getting to B – many strings of hope that will help you work towards getting you there – if some of them pay off, and some of them don’t, you’re still ok. You’re still on your way.

The power of (more than) one: there is something liberating about running your own project – make a decision and implement it, woohoo, how great is that? But it can also be lonely. And for someone prone to insecurity and decision-making-paralysis, having a cheer squad and sounding board is essential. You know who you are, and thank you.

We have exciting things ahead for Write the World, with further notebook designs and collaborations on the way. Our focus for the moment is on spreading the word and selling as many notebooks as possible over the coming months.

Think of them as the perfect Christmas gift, meaningful, environmentally friendly and – with each $10 notebook providing $10 for charity – making the world just that little bit better.

If you haven’t already checked out the range, you can do so at www.writetheworldnotebooks.org. And here’s to the next four weeks!