I’m no stranger to feeling stuck in life. I have spent many thousands of hours dreaming up new businesses, working for the ‘man’, not focusing on any one task, feeling lost and unsure of how to move forward and failing when things got tough. Business is a learning curve, right!?
When I wanted to start my coaching business to share my knowledge about not only business development, but also motivational techniques, personal growth and creating a positive mindset, it wasn’t as easy as I’d thought it would be (even with all my marketing experience!)
Launching a new business is not easy. You have to (potentially) give up the comforts of a stable paycheck to delve into the unknown, an unpredictable abyss of self-employment. A lot of things keep us from making the leap- you might have children to provide for, you might be the breadwinner in your family, you’ve got a mortgage to worry about… And that’s before we even take into account the intangibles like fear and insecurity. So let me ask you, what’s your motivation for making a change?
I want to share with you part of my story. I am what might be termed a “serial entrepreneur”- I prefer to call myself a dreamer. I’ve dabbled with my own businesses throughout the years, starting new ventures, giving them a go, and then giving up when it got to the next phase- either too scared or too naïve to take the plunge into full-time self employment. Believe me, when you’re looking at your dreams square in the face, they can seem quite scary up close no matter how much you want them! So when I started my marketing consultancy, I was already very good at planning and structuring my days and managed to use my experience from previous job roles where I had learnt from bosses who had mentored me, pushed me- and most importantly failed me. I knew I could do it, I knew I had skills to apply to my new role as self-employed business owner, but had never really made it work before.
So what changed? What made the difference for me this time? It was my best friend (now my wife) who kept me sane, helped me with difficult clients or situations and was always there for me when I needed someone to talk business with. Perhaps most importantly, she had herself already been self employed for 4 years by that point. Having someone to turn to with experience can make all the difference. What’s great is that I can now be that self-employment sounding board for you! (I’m also going to stop talking about my wife before she gets such a big head she can’t fit through the door…)
My marketing consultancy took off in a big way- before long I had more clients than I knew what to do with and found myself working with a broad portfolio of national and international clients. Make sure you’re ready to handle success when it comes your way!
I’ve made a lot of mistakes in business and I am proud to say I’ve learnt from every single one of them and I hope you will learn from my mistakes too. I congratulate to my clients when they tell me about a mistake, because every mistake is an attempt in learning towards your goal. I recently founded my coaching service to help people just like you achieve your goals. I decided to collect the lessons I’ve learned along the way and share them with people like you who are striving to better themselves, striving for success, and looking for help to upgrade their life and business.
So, to begin with here are my 10 best tips for achieving anything you want in life:
Focus on commitment and motivation will follow
Just how committed are you to your goal? Write down your goals, all of them, big, small and massive. Then decide (on a scale of 1-10, just how important that goal is to you. 1 being not very, 10 being MUST ACHIEVE!) Put a number next to each goal. Now consider what (if anything) are you willing to sacrifice in order to achieve it? If you’re not prepared to give a little, perhaps you don’t really want it as much as you thought, this activity may surprise you. If nothing’s going to stop you getting that goal, motivation to achieve it will easily follow suit.
Seek discovery, not results
If you focus on the excitement of discovering, improving, exploring and experimenting, your motivation will always be fuelled with passion and excitement. If your focus is on the end result with no consideration to the journey along the way, your motivation could be compared to the weather—plan for still waters, you’ll fail the minute a storm comes. So the key to achieving a goal is to focus on the journey, not the destination. Keep thinking about what you are learning along the way and how those lessons can help you grow. In other words- Enjoy the journey.
It’s the long game that counts, make it fun
It goes without saying, but when you are having fun you feel more motivated. Think about when you’ve enjoyed doing something you find fun- like going out for an evening run. It’s something you look forward to and use to de-stress. Now imagine you’re training for a marathon next week and you’re not fit for it- you immediately feel anxious, stressed, there’s a big chance your training will start carrying a heavy emotional weight, you’ll lose perspective, probably pick up an injury and not be able to race. Running stops being fun and the less fun it is the harder it is to get back into the ‘running is fun’ mindset- what a vicious cycle! Monitoring your mindset and attitude on a daily basis will help you get through those inevitably tough times in your career.
Choose your thoughts carefully
Thoughts influence feelings and feelings determine how you view your life. You have a lot of thoughts in your head, but you will always have a choice of which thoughts to focus on: the ones that will make you emotionally stuck (fears, doubts) or the ones that will move you forward (excitement, experimenting, trying new things, stepping out of your comfort zone etc). It’s your choice. More tips on avoiding negativity coming soon…
Re-wire your brain
The next step after avoiding negative thoughts is to use your imagination. When things go well, you are full of positive energy, use these times to anchor yourself in the moment and use this energy at a later date. When you are experiencing a difficult time, you need to be even more energetic so remind yourself of the positive moments or wins- and then rename your situation. If you keep repeating “I hate my job”, guess which feelings those words will evoke? You can always find something to learn even from the worst boss in the world at the most boring job.
If this is you, for the next three days think and say positive things ONLY and notice what happens to you and people around you. Instead of “I don’t earn enough money in my job”, try “I’d love the opportunity to earn more money in my job.” Put positivity out, get positivity back!
If you’re interested in finding out more about how your brain works and read about actually research and studies in rewiring the brain, this book is right up your street:
Challenge yourself and take action today
Motivation means action and action brings results, but sometimes your actions fail to bring the results you think you want. You wait for the perfect timing or for an incredible opportunity, while you drive yourself into stagnation – just do it. Get out there, challenge yourself, do something that you want to do even if you are afraid.
Remove any distractions
Meaningless things and distractions will always be in your way, especially those easy, usual things you would rather do instead of focusing on new challenges and meaningful projects. Learn to focus on what is the most important. Write a list of time-wasting activities (FACEBOOK!) and hold yourself accountable to not do them. I love a good list, so write down everything you need to do and number them with importance – do the most important thing now, no excuses.
You’re not alone, but don’t rely on others
You should never expect others to do it for you, not even your partner, friend or boss. They are all busy with their own needs. No one will make you happy or achieve your goals for you. It’s all on you, so hustle!
Plan only three steps ahead
Know your next three steps forward. You may not necessarily need to plan further ahead than that (apart from the bigger picture). Fill out your weekly calendar, noting when you will do what and how. When-what-how is your new mantra. Review how each day went by what you learned and revise what you could improve next week. By taking this approach you will move forward organically and won’t overwhelm yourself with too much to do.
Self-care is vital to your future
It’s easy to burn out when you are very motivated. Take time to check in with yourself and recognise any of your signs of tiredness and take time to rest. Allow your body and mind to rest with scheduled relaxation and fun time. Even the little things count. Meditate, or just take deep breaths, close your eyes, or focus on one positive thought for five minutes. My favourite self-care ritual at the moment is a reward of warm ‘radiator pyjamas’ at the end of a hard day – bliss!
Above all, don’t worry. You don’t lack motivation because you’re lazy or don’t have an awesome goal. Even the most accomplished athletes, biggest celebrities, or richest business people get lost sometimes. What makes them motivated is the curiosity about how much better or faster they can get. So above all, be curious, and this will lead you to your goals and success.
Interested in reading more?