Over the years, I've communicated with countless women via email, on the phone or in person, seeking advice about how to start their next venture. Some have wanted to launch their own blogs, others had great business or product ideas. They all seemed to have high hopes in the beginning but, in the end, rarely do they reach the level of success they could have.
This weekend, I exchanged a series of texts with a friend who is struggling to grow her business. Weeks prior, we had a long conversation discussing her strategy for the next 30 days. In her texts, she expressed her challenge of being stopped by fear. After I asked some clarifying questions, she admitted that her "fear" was really frustration of her lack of results.
This isn't at all uncommon. I've seen this happen time and time again. A person gets excited, starts taking something new and, when they don't experience huge results right away, they give up. I'm fortunate to have reached a decent level of success with my business. When I share my numbers with my accountant and business advisors, both are pleasantly surprised with what I was able to accomplish in my first year after leaving my job. The business is profitable, debt free and growing. But that wasn't always the case. I too started off with just an idea and a desire to make it real. But somehow I was able to create greater results.
Faith As Small As A Mustard Seed
I think my approach was a bit different from some of the people I counsel. From the very beginning, I've always been impressed by small results. In the early days, I owned a website that was supposed to earn countless amounts of passive income. For months, that site earned $0.00. I continued to work on it and check my stats on a regular basis. Then, one day, it generated $0.17 in advertiser earnings. I was elated! I immediately called a friend and told her what happened. Needless to say, she wasn't impressed with my meager earnings but, to me, it felt like I hit the jackpot. I could barely work for the rest of the day, that's how excited I was.
Time passed and I launched my first physical product. My first month in business, I earned a whopping $200.00. Once again, I was overcome with excitement. I immediately contacted a counselor from my local Small Business Association. I proudly showed her my profit and loss statement to which she responded "um....I'm happy that you earned $200.00, but that's not really enough money to support a business." She was absolutely right, but I didn't let her words affect me one bit. I left her office with the same level of enthusiasm that I walked in with (if not more). I didn't second guess the business or my results. To me, this was the birth of something that could grow into a huge venture. And I was determined to make it work.
With most people I talk to, they are discouraged by their early results instead of being fueled by them. Some take this as a sign that their plans aren't manifesting. They don't realize that every living thing starts small. A sprout has the potential to grow into a mighty oak. But sometimes, we look at the sprout and get discouraged, when we should be electrified.
Discouragement will cause you to take less and less action. Excitement fuels you into greater action.
You've have to get (and stay) enthusiastic about all the progress made, even if it appears small.
How to Generate Rapid Growth
Then comes the time where you want to accelerate your results. The mistake that most people make is they remain in the same level of action while expecting new results. They want substantial results while putting in mediocre amounts of action. That's just not how things work. The people who are where you want to be work way harder on their craft than you do. I can guarantee it. When I wanted to reach the six figure level in my business, I had to do things differently than when I was earning $200 a month. Your current results provide valuable feedback on how your strategy is working. It's our job to look at these results and determine if we are on the right path or if we need to change our course of action.
Many times I offer advice as to what types of action required to create the desired outcomes, and they shy away from it. I understand that resistance becomes a greater factor when taking new action, but you have to push through if you really want to experience what's on the other side. I operated in my comfort zone for a very long time and my results reflected it. Then, I decided to stop playing around and get serious. To do that, I looked for examples of others who had they type of results I wanted and dissected their strategies. From there, I determined the new actions necessary. Instead of looking at these new actions as scary, I viewed them as my answer. They were the roadmap to my destination. I didn't care what it took, just as long as I got there.
Don't be afraid to do what's necessary. Every time you do something new, you experience new outcomes. It's like putting puzzle pieces together. If two pieces don't fit, try something else. Don't just give up.
That's what people tend to do. When pieces don't fit, they walk away from the puzzle. If walking away wasn't an option, you'd tweak your strategy and move forward.
It's also a good idea to have a long term vision. If you're starting a new venture, be ready to invest at least a year into growing it. I have this ritual of manually tracking all of my results on a monthly basis. Nothing fancy. Just a visual reminder of my progress. This makes easier to keep going. Lastly, one great piece of advice I received was to reward yourself for reaching milestones. Even small milestones, like making your first sale, deserve acknowledgment. This keeps your mind focused on the next step. Instead of having to worry about making $100k...all I needed to was to make my first sale. Once that happened, my next milestone was immediately created. This is how I remained motivated.
Remember, your ideas are like seeds. They're loaded with possibility. It's critical that you believe enough in your vision enough to fight for it. Align your level of action with the results you desire. Keep going no matter what. If you do stop for a while, start again. Remember to focus on why you are doing this in the first place and keep moving forward until you get there.
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