Plot twist (noun): a radical change in expected direction.
This post is bound to be a ramble because I’ve gotta get out all the stuff that’s in my head, but the tl;dr is that things are a-changin’ round these parts.
I’m closing down the blog and active content creation – for the forseeable future – here at StephGaudreau.com…
…and shifting it, along with my energy and message, back to StupidEasyPaleo.com.
I know, probably not what you expected, right?!
I’m so excited, and I want you to join me.
(If you found me through SEP and followed me here, the good news is that you won’t have to check two sites and two sets of social accounts to get your daily dose of Steph-ness.)
I’ve gotta say this up front, because I know there’s a chance you wrinkled your nose at the p word (paleo). If it’s not your jam, that’s totally cool…but hear me out:
I believe in nourishing your body, and every body is different.
I believe context is more important than rigid dogma.
I believe in making humans harder to kill.
I believe in helping you become stronger so you can achieve your full potential.
And all that goes way beyond food or a strict dietary regimen.
What we want to believe is like this…
…is actually more like this:
Stick with me, and you’ll see what I mean. It’s a chance to explore how to make yourself resilient and strong and badass.
But let me back up, because every plot twist needs a back story.
In 2011, I started my blog and began posting recipes
for the world so I’d remember them. I wrote however the f*ck I wanted because, well, like three people were reading it.
And then in 2013, I left my 12-year teaching career to make Stupid Easy Paleo my full-time gig. (Yes, scary. Yes, exciting. More on all that in a soon-to-be-published post.)
Risk is a funny thing.
In a way, you’d think that taking a flying leap into entrepreneurship would mean charging forward with that “write what I want, do what I want” spirit.
Well, as the stakes rose, I got more concerned with stuff like web traffic, SEO, and email subscribers. Naturally. If you start an online business, that tends to be a logical progression.
But I started softening my voice and my opinions. What I gleaned from the “biz world” lead me to believe that I had to vanilla-fy who I was to appeal to more people and “be successful.” (That was what I took from it at the time. I was wrong, obvi.) If you look back at blog posts from the 2013-15 period, it’s there. I got lured by the siren song of trying to appeal more broadly…
…and mid-2015, I knew I was going to head straight into the rocks if I didn’t do something.
I’d created this pretty big website with a great community and social following, but I’d painted myself into a corner, afraid to express what I really had on my mind for fear of losing what I’d created.
A very small percentage of comments coming in were complaints…about only wanting recipes – not all the other stuff that goes into a healthy lifestyle – or objecting to my very occasional use of wash-your-mouth-out-with-soap words.
And I let it change me.
I didn’t stick to my guns. I didn’t listen to my gut.
Hindsight is always 20-20.
Looking back, I should have had the cojones to keep writing about what I was passionate about…yes, food but also fitness and mindset and how to not take yourself so seriously.
But instead, I ran away and created another space for myself. Here. A “safe” place where I could say what I really wanted.
Everything I was reading, business-wise, at the time was saying, “Niche down. Get specific. No, more specific than that.”
Okay, so Stupid Easy Paleo would be about recipes. And all the other stuff would go here.
If I could go back to July 2015, my first urge would be to slap myself in the head…
…but then again, that’s all part of the process…trying things out, making mistakes, keeping what works, and pivoting. I really admire my pal Dave Conrey for his skill at doing exactly this. (If you’re curious about pivoting, read Rework by Jason Fried & David Hansson.)
So I can’t say I regretted the split. Not at all. It’s taught me a shit ton.
I’m a child of divorced parents, perhaps like many of you. I know what it’s like to divide time and have two parallel tracks and feel conflicted about where you fit in, what the rules are, and what’s expected of you.
Here’s the thing: For some people, splitting their businesses makes sense. And I’m not here to tell you that’s wrong. (I always joke with Z that if I sold Pokemon cards, I’d definitely make a different website for that.)
But what I ended up with was a divided heart and mind. Not to mention a confusing, logistical nightmare.
I launched this site in January 2016…and on the daily, I’d think, “Should _____ post / program / thingie go on Stupid Easy Paleo or here?”
Instead of solving my problems, it created more of them.
And if it was confusing for me, I can’t even imagine what y’all were thinking…other than, “What the hell is Steph doing?”
The reality is that both sites are aspects of my philosophy. It became impossible to separate them effectively.
I spent a whole year agonizing over what to do. So much precious mental energy, down the drain.
And at one point, I thought I knew.
I got really close to moving the last 6 years of Stupid Easy Paleo here, keeping a lot of it and pushing self-destruct on the rest.
Starting this new site has been hard…building it and everything that goes with it from zero.
I have seven email inboxes, two different e-commerce systems, two badass coaching programs on two different websites, and two completely different sets of social media accounts.
Tired yet just thinking about it?
Some people could probably manage this just fine, but it’s been a huge challenge.
But last week, while on a call with my business coaches, I had a huge lightbulb moment. (Yes, even coaches need coaches.) I’d invented a problem where there wasn’t actually one.
(It’s worth noting that nothing changed except how I chose to view the situation. Powerful lesson in mindset, indeed.)
Yes, there will always be the minority who complains – right before announcing to the world that they’re unfollowing. #ByeFelicia
Yes, some people may never get on board with being harder to kill because they’re turned off by the paleo word. They’re probably not My People anyway. (h/t Dallas Hartwig.)
No, I can’t please everyone. No, I’m not responsible for how others perceive and react to my work.
But damn, that’s taken a long time to sink in.
It’s easy to say you know something. But to really believe it and live it, that’s another level. It’s a process.
Anyway, my dominant feeling this past week has been RELIEF, followed by excitement. I’m so psyched to share my philosophy and really go deep about how to make unbreakable humans on Stupid Easy Paleo. Without fear. Without holding back. Unapologetically me.
So, What Now?
Basically, all the things you’ve come to know and love about the blog here will move to a new spot, streamlining the process. If this split and merge have been confusing for you, I am really, truly sorry…sometimes the learning process isn’t linear.
This merge will mean more energy for me to invest in creating more stuff you love…instead of constantly dividing my time. And you’ll find a large community of like-minded people who you can learn from, too. The more, the merrier.
It’s going to take a little time for the full merge to happen, and I’m pumped about bringing the Harder to Kill lifestyle to the forefront of Stupid Easy Paleo. Over there, I’m going to tweak things a bit to reflect that as this year plays out.
- This site will remain up, but will become more like an author bio page instead of an active blog. My SG Instagram will also remain up, but soon, I won’t be posting there. Follow me here on IG.
- Stupid Easy Paleo will include more content than just recipes going forward, which I’m really jazzed about. I LOVE teaching and coaching about a holistic approach to health. (I’m not getting into racecars or knitting or underwater basketweaving, don’t worry.) Follow me there and jump on my newsletter for weekly updates.
- Listen to my podcast, Harder to Kill Radio. Things got really real this season!
- All shirts and stuff are now in the other store.
- If you’re a Strength School member, you’ll continue to access the program and login here. Eventually, I’ll be moving (and rebranding!) it. I’ll email you when that happens.
- If you’re on my SG newsletter, I’ll be transferring that to my SEP newsletter. I’d love for you to stay on, and I’m going to send an email out about that very soon.
- I’m planning on another summit later this year. If you’re Women’s Strength Summit All-Access member, nothing’s going to change for you. Continue to access all the interviews as you have been. Stay tuned for details on the new one!
Alright dudes, that’s the true story, the plot twist, and the new direction.
If you know me, you’ll know how much this meme encapsulates so much goodness
because I’m a crazy cat lady:
My hope is that being vulnerable and honest will help someone out there reading…
…maybe it’ll help you take action on something in your life, to change things up, or to have the courage to move beyond the fear of “what if.”
My wonderful friend and coach Allegra Stein has always impressed something upon me:
You can’t know-for-sure if something’s going to be a spectacularly epic success or a flaming-pile-of-poo-failure until you do it. Until you act. Until you live it.
The paralysis of trying to “make the right choice” can keep you absolutely stuck and tortured by your own thoughts.
So here’s my story of taking a path and deciding later on that it didn’t work out like I’d hoped. And everything’s gonna be just fine.
In fact, no: Everything’s gonna be fucking great.