As we enter into a new year, (new decade? Still debatable), many of us are making new resolutions. Mine is to set clear boundaries and not assume.

On a personal level, we set boundaries so we can maintain integrity to ourselves and those around us. However, as I have had it drilled into me this past year more than ever, it’s also necessary to do this in business relations.

Last year I had to “fire” a couple clients who were just sucking the life joy out of me. One because she couldn’t respect the new dollar value of the time I put into her projects after graciously providing her too much under-compensated work, and another because of a severe fear of execution: stretching what should have been a 3-week project into an 8-month project, constantly changing her mind and taking advantage of my time and sanity.

Yeah, I’m through with that. Kicked them both to the curb. Tooda-loo!

And then, I discovered a new joy sucker: false assumption. Someone whom I thought was just as excited about being a part of growing my business has let me down. Not devastatingly, but impactive enough to delay progress. This person led me on to believe they were 100% on board and would be helping me spread the word…. but it never happened. They implied they would help out financially so we could reach the next goal on time…. only to stammer a bunch of lame excuses at the last minute, then go rogue for months. Nothing.

Really, it’s my fault; I assumed wrong. I was gullible enough to believe their promises and passion. But I’ve learned from this experience. I’ve toughened up, and I’ve moved on. Good things are happening!

The last couple months I’ve met some amazing people who are genuinely interested in my business, and, I received a small grant with the promise of more to come! All on my own. Every penny goes to good use. This year I will be making some great connections and reaching new goals, a little wiser, a whole lot stronger.

Remember: Negative people and experiences are just tests to strengthen your resolve. Stay focused, channel the bad vibes into energy, and use it to push forward! Never give up. 💟

Since 1999, Angie Donelle has worked with hundreds of independent authors to help them create beautiful, top-selling books.