Do you want to simplify your business life? Whatever drove you to become your own boss, regardless of whether entrepreneurship is in your bones, your DNA or just something you fell into, I’ll lay odds that there are times you just wish you could change the pace and drop the overwhelm.
Working for yourself can be one of the craziest of rides you’ll ever go on! It’s full of ups and downs, happiness and frustration, as well as courage and sometimes, disappointment. But one thing is certain - it’s never a journey you’re going to take in a single straight line. We all experience the negative effects of working for ourselves and we all have to learn to take the rough with the smooth.
But, if you’re looking for ways to help smooth out those rough elements associated with working for yourself, here’s my top advice.
This isn’t about telling your mentors to do one, or thinking you always know best - it’s about being mindful of who you’re listening to. I’m sure we’ve all seen posts on social media, where someone is lamenting about how confused they are, as to their next steps. Inevitably it turns out they’ve been soliciting advice from someone who either a) isn’t in their industry, b) isn’t a success in their own business or even worse c) isn’t even in business!
It’s essential that you narrow down who you’re listening to. Make it people who are either already doing what you want to do, or have already achieved it.
In a similar vein, narrow down who you’re learning from! It’s so easy to sign up for emails and teachings from every influencer and expert you like. The problem is, you end up with an inbox overflowing with things you want to read, products and services you contemplate buying as you think you ‘need’ them, and contradictory information from them all.
Decide what skills and knowledge you need to brush up on and follow one person in that niche. Not only does this cut down on overwhelm, but it also keeps your email inbox clutter-free and helps you keep your learning on track.
One of the things my business mentor is always reminding me - We all want to take over the world – but let’s just start with a county. It’s great that you have big plans, but you need to be able to narrow down your focus in order to stay on track and not get overwhelmed.
It’s about having a path to follow and committing to staying on track. There will always be things around that can knock you off course or tempt you in a different direction (cue that shinny object and associated FOMO!). It’s your job to keep visualising your desired end goal, whilst you stay laser-focused on implementing the plan you have in place.
Talking of focus, it isn’t bad to want to reach a certain income level. However, if you want to simply your business life, you don’t want money to be your only focus. It’s the same with so-called vanity figures (social media followers, likes etc). They’re great at boosting your confidence, but if you get too focused on them, you’ll inevitably feel disappointed when the algorithms change and those numbers are affected.
Instead, look to have a monetary goal alongside your business goal. If you want to reach a certain monthly income level, for example, set a goal that’s based on one of the actionable steps you can take to reach it (such as creating an online course or speaking to 5 potential new contacts a day).
This has so many levels to it! Far too many female entrepreneurs don’t have the confidence in their own abilities or themselves. If you want to succeed in business you need to be able to have faith and trust in yourself and what you can achieve. If you don’t, your value will be watered down and this will trickle down to your clients. You won’t charge what you’re worth, clients won’t think you’re worth your prices and it just opens you up to awkward conversations where you’ll either feel rubbish or feel the need to justify or change everything from your prices to values.
You’re smart, you are good enough and you are worthy of love, money and success. You are worthy - never forget that.
Many entrepreneurs will read this and assume it’s about your one ideal client - and it could be about that! But for this blog post, I want this to be about the one thing you must get done today. If you want to simplify your business life, know what one thing is your non-negotiable, must-do no matter what, task on your list. If you’re currently yelling ‘are you stupid?!’ at your screen and chuntering that your to-do list has like 20 things on it - take a breath for a second!
Your to-do list, no matter how big or small, needs to be prioritised if you want to simplify things. So, out of everything on your current list, what is THE most important thing on it? What is the task that will help your business the most, today? Maybe it’s a task that you’re on a deadline for or a client needs right away? That’s your one!
Trying to be someone else is not only difficult, but it’s also damn near impossible to keep up indefinitely (not to mention how draining it is for you!).
You’re unique, you’re talented and smart (remember advice #5..?) - why wouldn’t you want to be you?
Focused action is the key to working smarter. It’s why so many people love the Pomodoro Method for tasks - it enables you to focus solely on one task at a time. But working smarter isn’t just about staying focused - it’s also about not working harder than you need. It’s about knowing what are the biggest impacting tasks you can commit to, rather than just the most tasks you can cram into your day.
For example, you could try to be on all the different social media platforms, or you could focus solely on the main one your ideal clients are on. You could create lots of new content every day or week - or you could limit creation to one new piece and focus on promoting it and repurposing it in multiple different ways. Your time could be spent on attracting new leads into your business - or you could spend 10 minutes each day, getting in touch with warm and hot leads.
What it all boils down to is this - if you want to simplify your business life, you need to have some kind of plan in place to make that happen. Whether that’s an official business plan or a list of your goals over the next 3 or 5 years, a plan gives you some clear direction. In fact, a good plan will ensure you ARE covering everything above.
I’d recommend you check out these resources, to help you get a clear plan into place and to ensure you’re planning a business you want:
Carrie Green: How To Create A Business Success Plan
Carrie Green: Business Success Plan Download
Working for yourself isn’t always easy and it certainly isn’t a simple journey - but it is a personally and financially rewarding one. By following the advice above, you’ll have a way to help simplify your business life and free you up a little, so you can enjoy the ride - no matter how windy and bumpy your journey may be!
If you liked today’s blog, why not drop me a comment? I’d love to hear what you thought of today’s blog and any additional top tips you may have about simplifying your business life.