Fashion Business Owner Musings: When Excitement is Mixed with Overwhelm


It’s a new year and I know a lot of us are feeling excited and motivated and pumped to absolutely kill it in business in 2017. A fresh start, new beginnings, and all that jazzy sentiment. It’s an exciting feeling, it is.

But is anyone else slightly freaking out over everything that needs to get done?

Now, I love the start of a new year as much as the next entrepreneurial spirit. But I gotta be honest, all these ideas and plans I have for the business in 2017 are starting to freak me out a little. One day I’ve super pumped, the next I’m staring at my computer with my mouth hanging open wondering how the hell I’m going to get everything done.

I’ll admit it’s a nice problem to have– to be so inspired in your business that ideas and plans are pouring out of you at a speed that you can’t keep up with. In a lot of ways, I love that. It’s why I wake up most days really excited. But it certainly also adds a bit of anxiety to my days.

And then you see others hustling and you start to get a little annoyed.

Like, when you’re scrolling through Instagram and all the other business owners are posting their coffee shop work sessions and using hashtags like #IGotThis #GettingShitDone, and you’re like, “uh, I’m still trying to organize the thoughts that are racing through my brain into something I can actually turn into a plan.”


So if you’re feeling like everyone else is projecting Ms. Productivity and you’re Ms. Overwhelm, don’t worry, this is way more common than you might think; you’re certainly not alone. I’m there with ya.

But here’s what I’ve learned.

I believe that the reason that we are feeling overwhelmed by all this is that while we’re excited for all the new ideas and possibilities, we are still holding on to the things that are not helping us towards our goals. So, rather than feeling focused with a plan, we’re feeling like there’s not enough time in a day, week, or month to squeeze in everything.

That’s the issue. We need to stop squeezing.

We need to stop giving our time, energy, and creativity to the things that are not serving us and instead focus on the current plan.

So here’s what I’ve been doing. I wrote down everything that I’m holding onto that doesn’t actually help me reach my goals. This includes people who drain my energy, email subscriptions that clog my inbox and my brain, and habits and practices that I’ve allowed into my daily life. Throughout the course of last week I took note of these things (eh-hem endless Instagram scrolling before bed) and have resolved to stop giving them power.

It’s only been a week but I can already feel the impact it’s having on my life and my business.

So designers, I want to make sure you know that if you are one of us who is trying to find that balance of excitement for a new year, new goals, and new possibilities with the dizzying feeling of being behind, you are not alone and it doesn’t have to be this way.

Think about the things that are draining you and keeping you from feeling focused and goal-driven and stop doing them. You got this. 😉

Lots of love and encouragement,

Nicole Giordano

Nicole is the founder of StartUp FASHION, an online resource and community supporting for independent designers around the world with building their businesses. A deep love for the craft of fashion paired with an adamant belief that success is defined by the individual, led her to found StartUp FASHION, where she helps independent designers and makers screw the traditional fashion business rules, create their own paths, and build businesses they truly love. More than anything else, she’s in the business of encouragement and works every day to remind makers and designers that they have something special to offer the world and that they can, in fact, do this thing!