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Hey there and welcome to this Weekend’s Takeaways!

I’m in a reflective mood this week because I finally succumbed to one of the many Spring bugs that are flying around and had to actually stop work and lie down. Yikes.

Like every other self-employed person I know, illness is not an option.  But that got me thinking…

After all, if you’re not looking after your #1 employee – yourself – then you cannot hope to perform at your peak.  I always used to timetable a lunchtime walk into my working day as it was a great time reflect on what I had written or created in the morning and then edit or tweak it as necessary in the afternoon.

I’m going back to that practice and heartily recommend that you do too, complete with notebook to jot down the ideas that tend to pop up during these walks.  It really is like a moving meditation in that you free up your mind as well as your body by getting away from your desk and I have always ended up being far more productive as a result.

Try it and let me know how you get on – if nothing else, your doctor will thank me for it.

Another way of looking after yourself, and therefore increasing both productivity and profits, is to ensure you remain true to yourself, especially in business. I came across a couple of articles from Forbes which are excellent on this, the first a thought-provoking piece on how to create the most profit while also creating the most positive impact:

And the second on how essential great content is to your online success these days and that is content that reflects you and your brand rather than stuff you churn out to keep the keyword gods happy:

I particularly like the next post I came across because it addresses the issue of how to make a sale if you are an introvert.  There’s this widely held perception (and widely sold perception) that you have to be some super confident, super shiny, super out there person to make it in marketing.

Absolute rubbish.

Read this to find out how you can make as many sales, if not more,  by again remaining true to yourself and simply extending who you are to reach out to customers.  Do explore the suggested related articles if you get a chance as they’re also full of good advice:

Now for this week’s Kindle freebies suggestions and the first is an excellent, plain English guide to SEO – brilliant for all of you who think SEwhat or are simply befuddled by all those over-complicated products on the topic out there.

This also includes a free book on how to get to the top of Google Local so you get double the bang for your zero bucks:

My other free Kindle suggestion is this great guide by Matt Fox on Friction Free Sales and Marketing which is a straightforward, fluff-free book on the psychology and art of persuasion.

Well worth a look:

For those of you who are really time-pressed this book condenses some great marketing advice into less than 1000 words:

Don’t forget you can read Kindle books on your PC using the free Kindle reader available from Amazon or through the Kindle app on your other mobile devices.  To get your country specific free books, just replace the .com after Amazon with etc.

Finally, an inspirational TED talk on the power of your own genius…which takes me back to where I began with this newsletter and making sure you nurture yourself in every way because you simply can’t afford not to!

As for me, I’m overdosing on vitamins, getting plenty of rest and revving up to return to my desk renewed and refreshed so I can unleash yet more of my own creativity.

Stay tuned and have a wonderful week.