The 5 Big Lessons I’ve Learned From Owning My Own Business

Five biggest lessons from owning a small business

In January of this year, I celebrated 4 years of owning my own business. I can’t believe it’s been that long; more importantly, when I look back, it’s insane to think about how much the business has evolved (heck, how much I’ve evolved). In the spirit of chatting more about behind the scenes business schtuff around here, I’ve been reflecting on some of the biggest lessons I’ve learned from running my own shop. While oftentimes tough to integrate, thinking about their outcomes now, these nuggets have also gotten me through the roughest of days. Here they are!:


Forgive yourself.

We live in this culture that’s encouraging us to dream bigger, to hustle, to always be doing and growing. It’s rocket fuel for the even marginally ambitious person, but I truly believe that once this messaging permeates your daily subconscious, it can also be paralyzing and even detrimental. How so? Well, if you’re anything like me, when I’m not dreaming bigger or hustling or doing or growing, I tend to be really hard on myself. I get that nagging voice in my head that says I’m not doing X enough, or I should have done this, or why didn’t I do that. Is that voice familiar to you, too? It makes me effing miserable.

I’ve learned to combat it by saying to myself: it’s ok, I forgive you. Maybe that sounds totally new age cheesy, but it works. Sometimes at the end of a long day, where I’ve powered through 95% of my to do list, I’ll look at the one or two items left and think, ugh, if I had woken up an hour earlier, I could’ve tackled those. It’s taken some time, but I then try to tell myself, it’s ok, I forgive you. Truth is, I probably needed the extra hour of rest, those items will get done first thing tomorrow, and most importantly, not finishing two things doesn’t take away from the success and accomplishment of completing all the others.

Try this a few times, and you’ll get really good at it. I’ve learned to forgive myself for not posting here more, or to Instagram more, or documenting more of my days on Snapchat, or even tackling all these growth strategy projects for my business. I figure I’ll get to them eventually, and even though I still battle that minor panic about not tending to the right parts of the garden (so to speak), as a solo business owner, you really have to step back and be comfortable with the discomfort.

Another way to look at forgiving yourself is that you don’t have to be good at everything. Which leads me to a lesson that’s equally as important:  Read the full post +

In this post:

Image of Victoria taken by Natalie Comstock; graphics added by Victoria McGinley Studio  ·  Desk Accessories styled by Meg Biram, and photographed by Laura Metzler, for Victoria McGinley Studio

"All we wanna know is where the stars came from, but do we ever stop to watch them shine?" - Jon Bellion

Little Luxuries

All $40 and under

Bringing back an oldie but goodie today! Bookmarked all within the last week or so, these little luxuries meant the time was ripe for a comeback.


ASOS Striped Maxi Dress, $36  ·  I have to admit, I don’t shop at ASOS all that much, but every now and again I end up on the site and am pleasantly surprised by the cute, affordable finds. With summer on the horizon, I’ve been keeping an eye out for easy dresses to don once temps are in the high 80s and we just want to lay around like this in front of a fan…this striped maxi fits the bill!

Framebridge’s Instagram Minis, $39  ·  By now you’ve probably heard of Framebridge. The concept is fantastic: you mail or upload your artwork to them, select a frame and mat, they put it all together for you, then mail back your finished art, ready to frame, all for flat prices. I have several wedding photographs I’ve never gotten framed, but more importantly, I’ve been having a great time brainstorming which hilarious photos of Instagram photos of Lucy I’ll be framing through their Instagram Mini program — you get a square Insta, framed and matted, for thirty nine bucksUpdate: I saw on Facebook last night that you can order TWO Instagram minis for $50 with the code 2INSTA50. Um, done and done.

Vogue Colors A-Z, $15  ·  Have you participated in the adult coloring book craze yet? I have yet to partake (one could argue that posts like these serve as my coloring book), but I had to bookmark the new Vogue Colors book — a coloring book filled with Vogue covers from 1912 to 1932. Color ’em in, then frame your beauties with Framebridge, ha!

RMS Master Mixer, $38  ·  RMS’s Living Luminizer will go down in my personal beauty history as one of the greatest highlighters ever — subtle, not glittery or shimmery, just gives you that glow. I was excited to find that they’ve released a warmer tone, called Master Mixer, done in a gorgeous rose gold shade. You can use it on your own as a highlighter perfect for summer, but looking around at reviews, it seems to blend beautifully into lipsticks, powders, everything. One review said it could double your makeup collection, it was that blendable and versatile. Consider me intrigued!

Pineapple Pencil Holder, $16  ·  Because, pineapples. They’re so hot right now! I think this would look adorable on a bathroom counter, filled with makeup brushes.

Agate Bookends, $35  ·  West Elm is featuring a couple different colors of agate bookends, with each set costing $35. I love blending in natural elements like this when decorating — it brings that organic feel that I consider a must.


In this post:

Graphics created by Victoria McGinley Studio

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Quick Snap: Vol. I

victoria mcginley studio - quick snap daily

Welcome to Quick Snaps! I’ve been thinking about fun, simple ways I can show you guys little bits of my life behind the scenes, and decided it would be cool to share occasional still life-type snapshots of my life at home (which also doubles as my studio office!). Working from home has forced me to develop certain routines, schedules and life hacks that are indispensable to me, and since I always love the little peeks into how other people live (it’s like a universal rule of the Internet that it’s fun to spy on people’s lives!), I figured you guys might enjoy. I was also inspired to do this because of how quick, simple and uncurated Snapchat is (a blessing in this super-styled social media world), so my goal is to take pics of life as it really is at home and work.

My morning routine and bathroom counter seemed like a good place to start, mostly because I just spring cleaned and organized everything this past weekend (ha!). So here it is, my first Quick Snap, along with a behind the scenes look at my morning routine:
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