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  • Jo Johnson

Listen to your gut and roll with it! Fuck the Box!

wordy jo sits on the top of a mountain at sunset thinking how important it is to listen to your gut and say fuck the box.

It's so freaking important to listen to your gut. Intuition is the most powerful guide we will ever have and too many of us ignore it.


So often, we ignore our gut instinct and instead do what others tell us we should be doing, trying to mold ourselves into a box we just don’t fit inside.

I say, fuck the box.

Get out there, listen to your gut, and breathe it all in.


So many business experts preach that, in order to be successful in running a business, you have to specialize in one area. I call bullshit! I'm all for niching down certain aspects, but I'm 1000x against specializing in one area.


Talk about a boredom overload and craziness-inducing stagnancy.


You don't have to specialize or niche down completely to be successful!

When I was hip-deep in running a photography business, every business class I took (with extremely successful photographers turned business coaches) repeated the same mantra: You must specialize to be successful.

I wasn’t nearly as successful as they were, but I wanted to be, so I ignored my gut instinct and followed their advice. It was fucking disastrous.

Not listening to my gut led to WAY too many years of hardship!

After too many years of struggling from trying to be successful by nicheing down to one type of photography in a city of fewer than 100,000 people (and still ignoring my intuition) AND being ridiculously bored and stagnant because of such a narrow focus, I couldn’t breathe anymore. I actually felt completely burnt out and had no interest left in photography anymore. Finally—basically in desperation—I just decided to let TF go, listen to my instincts, and see where I ended up.


And THAT is when my work (and life) changed drastically for the better!!!

Listening to your gut leads you to better prospects in business (and life)!


When I finally LEARNED to take my intuition seriously, life opened up, and—suddenly—a bazillion possibilities appeared.

wordy jo sits at her computer and raises an eyebrow about how listening to her gut finally led her down the road she was meant to travel.

I had been suppressing my creative energy in other areas to try to focus on just one area and it had burnt me out. Until, one day, a friend and I had a heart-to-heart and she asked me why was I trying to fit myself into a box that was, literally, never built for me and would never hold me comfortably?


WHOA! EPIPHANY TIME: Why indeed? FUCK THAT NOISE!


The solution was SO simple. I took stock of all my skills and choose the ones I was both best at and enjoyed the most and allowed a business to naturally develop around them. I trusted my intuition to lead me where I needed to go to be successful. And it worked.

The way I saw it, if I wanted to be a photographer and ghostwrite memoirs and ghostwrite blogs and be a professional SEO writer and consultant and be a professional editor (because I was good at all of those things), that’s exactly what I was going to do. #screwyouexperts


a neon sign that says think about things differently showing people how to say fuck the box and do what feels good

What happens when you trust your intuition, let it get you out of the fucking box, and show you what feels good?


Magic.


It’s now 2021 and I am currently still shooting (whatever I want, whenever the creative spark strikes).


Last weekend, I shot a personal branding session with one of my soul sisters who is a healer (shaman, acupuncturist, Reiki Master, yoga teacher, sound healer, etc.) and it was SO MUCH FUN! Check it out!

norwegian woman who is a shaman and healer applies sound healing with tuning forks to a woman creekside while Jo Johnson Photography captures images

wordy jo proves that she can do photography and write and edit with these images of a shaman woman working healing in a forest by a creek with her drum

blonde woman of norwegian descent cleanses a native woman creekside in a fall forest with sage and smiles

It's now 2021 and I'm currently ghostwriting and editing memoirs for people from all walks of life and parts of the world!


A client from last year, Chadia Chalmers, just released her memoir about surviving through the civil war in Lebanon, escaping an abusive first husband, and then finally emigrating to Australia with her second husband and family to settle in for good. I spent the better part of a year rewriting and editing this memoir and it really was a labour of love—both because of Chadia's story and because English is her third language and we often ran into funny roadblocks with English words and meanings she didn't understand. It feels so good when my clients publish their work and I always feel so happy and proud to be part of that writing, editing, and publishing journey.


an audiobook called cyclamen: a journey of hope by ghostwriter and editor Jo Johnson (wordy jo)

It's 2021 and I'm ghostwriting blogs for a few people around the world too, and it's fun AF!


One of my fave clients, Kate London, is an Affair Recovery Coach who spends her days helping women who are stuck in affairs find their self-worth again by helping them get out of their affairs with married men and get in touch with who they are again.


kate london affair recovery coach listens to her gut and helps women in affairs get out and get their lives back

Kate teaches her clients (on her Time To Thrive YouTube channel) how to stop getting into affairs and go forward living their lives knowing that they are worthy of healthy love and healthy relationships. I admire the shit out of Kate, both for what she's doing to help women (without any judgement and with a huge, open, loving heart) and for how far she has come in her own affair-recovery journey since we began working together a couple of years ago. I seriously dig the multi-faceted people that this business brings into my bubble.

Sooooo fucking lucky that I listened to my gut and started following where it was leading me!

Lastly, it's 2021 and I have spent the last five years honing my SEO (Search Engine Optimization) skills and knowledge to the point that people now hire me to optimize their websites (and social media channels) so they show up on Google and other search engines.


While I love offering ghostwriting services and editing services, something about SEO—SEO consulting in Vernon BC, SEO copywriting, keyword research and tracking, watching stats for traffic, hot ass leads, and conversions go up, up, up in Google Analytics—makes the geeknerd in me do backflips. There's NOTHING more rewarding than working on a client's SEO and seeing their site show up ABOVE the competition after a few months of dialling in their SEO. #fistpumpbitches

wordy jo sits on a blue couch against an orange wall and laughs out loud as she watches a client's SEO stats surpass the competition. she is so happy she listens to her gut and lets it lead her

So there you have it. I spend my days writing, editing and optimizing (for my own business and also a rad marketing agency for photographers called Meet Pepper) and I LOVE THE SHIT OUT OF EVERY MINUTE OF IT. I’m all over the fucking map and I have never felt so strong and confident and creative in my work, nor so motivated and challenged.

Basically, I’m following my gut and heart and pursuing ALL of the things I love the most and I’m finally able to let my creative freak flag flap on whatever breeze it fancies!

So my message to all of you peeps out there who are feeling stuffed into a box that just doesn’t fucking fit you is to learn to listen to your gut and start following its lead. Trust me, jump out of that box and let your intuition lead and it will take you places that you never dared believe you could go!

Fuck the box. Get out there and breathe it all in.
wordy jo and her friends sit together wrapped in a blanket and smiling in a fall forest as they work together on listening to their intuition and letting it lead them

And if you're looking for a ghostwriter for your memoir, a ghostwriter for your blogs, a little SEO help to get your website showing up on Google, or just some good, old-fashioned editing for your book or memoir, I know a gal! Hit me up and let's chat about it.

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