Before I get into this blog post, I just want to say that...
The moral of this story is: you really can do anything you put your mind to!
I 100% believe that we can achieve something if we put our minds to it & dedicate time & energy to get it done.
Over the last 3-4 weeks, I've been way, way waaaaaaaaaaay outta my comfort zone.
I took on something, which I thought was gonna be fairly straight forward...
That's why I agreed to do it lol!
But it turned out, I ended up doing something I've never done before...
And... it was really friggin' hard for me!
My dad asked me to sort out his business website.
"Sort out" being the operative word...
"Of course" I said - anything for my daddy xxx
Initially, we thought there was a website already up & running (which I was planning on just tweaking a little), which my dear mum (god rest her soul) had already created.
Yep - she was in to this whole Internet Marketing/Business thing before me & got me obsessed with it too!
Unfortunately when she passed away, we didn't realise that the website hosting hadn't been renewed & it got lost in oblivion.
(Hostgator removed it from their servers completely, because of the time lapsed).
I rang them & the guy felt bad, but what could he do - everything had been removed from all of their systems & there was no backup or copies of anything.
So there was nothing, nada, zilch to work with.
So here I was having to start at the beginning, building my dads website for his business (from nothing).
That's where the "sort out" became "sort out entirely from scratch"...
Now I'm kinda familiar with the basics of websites & how they work.
I know the simple mechanics behind them...
I just find it all too techie to put all the pieces together.
Well at least that's how it was until I took on this project...
I've never built anything from nothing before.
I've always had something to work with.
I had to get a new domain name, hosting, the lot!
I have to say, when he asked me to do it, he did the typical dad thing of saying - "I know you can do it Leah..."
I was nervous though...
After all, this was my dad and his business & I didn't want to screw it up for him or my brother (his business partner).
But, despite being nervous & not knowing whether I could actually do this - I took the task on anyway.
I'm not one to be defeated & I always love a challenge...
After all, what's the worse that could happen...
I mess it up & then we have to pay a pro a few thousand £££ to do it properly.
(No Pressure There Then lol...)
(I did NOT want this to happen btw - I wanted to prove to them & myself I could do this).
So I set about choosing a theme to start with.
He's in the Building/Construction & Refurbishment trade, so I wanted to get a cool theme to reflect this.
I checked out a few websites who sell themes & picked one I liked the look of (Dad had a quick look too & liked the one I'd chosen).
Then came my first rookie mistake (one of many for sure).
I purchased a theme that wasn't compatible with WordPress.
What a twonk...
Considering I've purchased many themes for my own blogs & websites before & installed them, with no problems - I couldn't believe I'd done this.
This was one of the "little bits" I did know about putting together a website.
I started to think there was no hope lol...
Anyway, after requesting a refund & getting a theme that would work with WordPress (Recover theme from ThemeForest), I was ready to get started.
Boy, oh boy I did not know what I was letting myself in for.
But I had to carry on as I didn't want to let my dad down & I certainly didn't want him to have to pay someone a lot of money to put it together, when I knew if I kept at it - I could do it.
I spent hours & hours tirelessly working away at figuring out all the different components & the structure of the theme itself.
It was a complete ball ache lol!
And that's putting it lightly!
And this was before I'd even started putting the site together.
My dad wanted it to be simple & easy for people to navigate around, so I had to keep this in mind at all times.
You see, I can go off on a tangent when I DO know what I'm doing, so I had to be careful not to go OTT with the whole thing.
But there was no worries there about making it overly complicated - as it was complicated enough putting the simplest things together.
How these website designers do it day in, day out, I do not know...
I messed around with it all for a while ( a loooooong while) and soon had it all pretty much figured out...
- The theme settings (fonts, headers, footers, layout)
- The shortcodes
- The Sliders
- The Menus blah, blah, blah...
Once I'd got in the groove & knew where everything was & how it worked, the rest was fairly simple.
I said "Fairly" lol.
But it took me such a long time to get to grips with the theme & get everything to work properly.
3.5 weeks working out how to use it all
Only 3.5 days putting the site together...
Once I knew how to do it, I could put it together quickly because I already had an idea of how I wanted the site to look.
Anyway, this isn't a "how to build a website" post...
For a start, I do not think I'm qualified in the least to give people advice on this sort of thing...
And second - it would be way to boring a post to go into every single detail on what I did.
But one thing I do want to say is, I now know a heck of a lot more than when I started!
And the only reason for this, is because I stepped out of my comfort zone & did something I would never usually do or even think about attempting to do.
I just wanted to share my experience on how it feels to really step outside of your comfort zone, do something you haven't done before & actually do it...
You can really surprise yourself sometimes on what you can do & achieve if you put your mind to it.
Let's just say, I'm totally glad I did this & got to experience building a website from scratch...
I actually kinda enjoyed it a bit once I was on a roll.
And now I can say I have built something from absolutely nothing.
All I used was a WordPress theme, my WordPress Dashboard & a few plugins & created something pretty cool I think...
BUT... The BIG question for me is - Would I Do It Again?
mmmmm - I'm really not sure...
If the opportunity came up, maybe I'd consider it...
... But - I think I'll be sticking to outsourcing web designing/building in the future, because for a non-techie kinda gal, it certainly turned out to be extremely time consuming & majorly stressful.
Whether that was because it was for family & I felt like I had something to prove - I don't know...
Although knowing me, I would have felt massively under presssure to produce something awesome, whoever I was doing it for.
I'm glad I did it for my dad & brother though, because they were totally proud & loved what I'd done - and that's a really fantastic feeling 🙂
You can't beat a great sense of achievement when you've put your heart, soul, sweat & tears into something.
It's another skill I can add to my "skill box", which is always growing, because I love to learn & experience new things!
What have you done that's really put you outside of your own comfort zone?
I'd love to hear in the comments below, or over on your fave social media platform, where I love to hang out too!
Speak soon & have an awesome day 🙂 🙂