Entrepreneurship as a form of self-care? That might feel like a foreign concept, but hear me out.
I had the wrong attitude towards my business for a long time.
All I could see was what my business WASN’T. I focused on the GAP between where I was and where I thought I SHOULD be. I looked at competitors and felt jealous about how much more quickly their businesses were growing. It made me feel like there was something wrong with ME. That I was (in some capacity) incapable of growing a team, operating on smooth systems or charging my worth.
My email list wasn’t hundreds of thousands of people. I felt like I wasn’t attracting “the right leads” or “enough” of a specific type of business.
I focused on what was missing, on what was lacking, and why I just wasn’t good enough to succeed at this business ownership stuff.
Eventually, a few years in to freelancing and growing an agency, it stopped feeling good. I either had to start loving what I was doing or close-up shop and go back to corporate agency life (meh… no thanks – #unemployable.)
I read books, hired coaches, and started getting clear on why running a business was so important to me.
THE HIDDEN PERKS OF SELF-EMPLOYMENT
I decided to accept my business for where it was at – and to honor where I had been without pressuring myself for growth.
I started to think about how many opportunities I was afforded because of my business – travel, friendships business write offs.
I focused on gratitude for all of the cool things I got to do in the name of “business”.
How cool is it that you can make money appear anytime you want? When you’re self-employed, you literally just have to figure out something that people need, and then go find those people. It really doesn’t need to be more complicated than that.
When I focused on gratitude and offering services that highlighted my God-given gifts, I went from $3K months to $18K months. Now, not overnight, but gradually.
I focused on my personal net worth as the biggest number worth tracking. It doesn’t work for long to bring in $10K in a month, yet spend $15K on business expenses (ask me how I know).
DETACHING FROM “THE GAP”
When you focus on how far you are from where you want to be, you’re focusing on “the gap”. You know – that space between your current life and your dream life. But let me tell you, focusing on this space puts you smack-dab in the middle of a negative mindset. When you’re operating in this negative space, with this perspective of scarcity and wanting to be somewhere BETTER than where you are instead of focusing on gratitude for what you have right now, you’ll often start operating from a place of fear. These are the times that shiny object syndrome rears its head. When you’re operating from a place of fear and scarcity, you feel willing to TRY ANYTHING to get yourself to where you think you “should be” instead of just focusing on your next best step in the moment.
FOCUSING ON THE PEOPLE
How many PEOPLE do you want to help per year? Answering this question should feel quite a bit different from defining how much money you want to make. It puts you in the perspective of serving your clients and marketing to them in the name of helping them find you so that you can improve their lives – totally different than thinking how much money you can make each month, yes?
Just like we have “love languages” in our relationships, we also have our own inner value barometers that make us feel good. Your business can be personally fulfilling in a lot of ways. Designing a business that is based on your values lets you run things in a way that can be personally validating, offer significance, provide security for your family, etc.
Here are some examples of personal values:
When you run your own business, you can blend your professional values with your personal values.
What are some of the ways you’ve done this in your own business?