I never thought much of it until I found that out for myself.
See, I went into business with the firm belief that as long as I marketed more, networked more, had more conversations, launched more programs… then I would be set. The money would flow in like water, right?
Well, not quite. It turns out, we all come into this entrepreneurship thing with our own “stuff.” Maybe it’s the (incorrect) story your parents told you about money and success. Maybe it’s self-doubt and insecurity that’s rooted in childhood. Maybe it’s long-standing (and most likely FALSE) ideas about your own abilities and skills.
Whatever it is, it affects us in our businesses whether we are conscious of it or not.
On my own entrepreneurial journey, I’ve learned a lot about what trips us up when we’re looking to reach that elusive “next level.”
I’ve been in that self-sabotaging place (more than once) and I’ve since come to learn that your MINDSET plays an enormous role in your success as an entrepreneur–heck, as a human being.
It’s the primary reason why some people are highly successful–and others, try as they might–are not.
Once I finally learned this, everything changed.
This was SUCH a hot topic at my recent 3-day live workshop… and based on that feedback, I KNEW I had to bring this information to my community at large.
If this sounds like exactly what YOU need at this time, you’ll want to listen in to this one-time, live complimentary call with me:
“3 Essential Shifts to Handle Your Fears, Own Your Expertise and Finally Get Out of Your Own Way (So You Can Get Out There Big)”
with Relationship Marketing Mentor Christine Gallagher
Thursday, December 6, 2012 at 7pm Eastern
Learn more and secure your spot now
During this upcoming free training call, I’m so excited to teach you:
–Why if you don’t have the right mindset, you’re not going to take action on the marketing (EVEN if you know what to do!)
–Why your self image dictates more than you know about how much you make
–The 3 things that need to be “in alignment” if you finally want to reach your goals
–How your hidden beliefs about money may be keeping you underpaid, overworked and actually REPELLING money away from you–and how to turn it ALL around (I learned this the hard way)
–The exact exercises I use in my own business that keep my mindset on track and in turn, my bank account growing… and much more.
Please don’t miss this very special free call. Just visit this page to secure your spot and join us.
Last night was time to confront Cash Flow in the 15-week entrepreneurial training course I teach for the Women’s Enterprise Development Center (WEDC) in White Plains, NY. It’s always the class that gives everyone headaches and anxiety attacks…and even the big jar of chocolate coins I bring along to “sweeten the pot” doesn’t help.
Having a business idea is the fun part. Figuring out what it will earn….not so much. But it’s so important to track your start up expenses, overhead and other costs, and figure out exactly what you need this business to do for you financially. Is it going to simply cover the “extras” in your household, or is this going to be a serious income that keeps your household afloat. I always say, cash flow is no different than budgeting for your household expenses…no different than balancing a checkbook. You know what bills are coming up…you know what money is coming in… and whether you’ll have enough to pay them, with ideally, some cash left over. Same principle with cash flow. If you take time to periodically plan your business spending and earning goals, you’ll have money in your pocket. And I don’t mean chocolate coins!
Monday night was graduation for the students in my WEDC entrepreneurial training course. For 15 weeks I’ve been helping them fine tune their ideas and prepare their business plans.
On the very first night of class, I use a road sign with a heart in the middle of it to describe how designing and launching a business is a lot like taking a road trip.
Because everyone’s business journey begins with an idea—a passion, symbolized by the heart in the middle of the sign. During the 15 weeks, we work on molding that idea into a fulfilling, profitable enterprise. We soul-search to make sure that we will love that idea for the long haul. We crunch numbers to make sure that the idea will be a money-maker, and I tell my students to imagine a dollar sign in the center of that heart. We do market research to guarantee that potential clients and customers will love that idea too. And we spend 15 weeks flushing out goals for the business and figuring out where we’d like to be in 1 month, 6 months, 1 year, and beyond.
Have you done a business plan? The most successful mompreneurs are those who take the time to write a mission statement, and flush out marketing, operational and income goals for their ventures. You don’t have to write a book. You just have to get started. As Nike says, Just. Do. It.
At the beginning, most of my students are terrified of the idea of writing a business plan. But by the end of our program, they have detailed ones in hand. Not only that, they have the confidence and courage to move forward, because they’ve done the research and know what it will take to be profitable.
Don’t try to “wing” your business. A business plan will guide you through your entrepreneurial journey. And once you’ve written it, check that business plan often to make sure you don’t want to switch course. As I told my graduating class on Monday night, it’s just as important to pull off the road sometimes, and check that map to make sure the destination is still where you want to be. Keep listening to your heart to make sure you really are doing what you love, and that what you love can bring in the cash you need.
Congratulations to my WEDC class and to my mompreneur friends everywhere!
I have been MIA from the mompreneurs online forum for several months sorting out my own world. Interestingly enough I have come back to find several members have spent the summer doing the same. Re-evaluating, stepping back, prioritizing, and some have just been plain old burnt out. We begin these ventures full of excitement and hope. We truly believe that we can conquer the world. This rush keeps us motivated, helps put products on shelves or services into action until BAM, you hit “The Dip”! The Dip? It is the time when your engine has run out of steam and you just aren’t sure where to go next. I swore it would never happen to me because I LOVE what I do. Yet it did. For me it came at the point between the creation and the running of the business. The creating part was amazing….running a business is a whole other story. There is not much glamour or excitement in boxing up your 300th box at 10pm or filing a stack of paperwork. I wanted to keep on creating but in order to do that; you need to keep moving the business side onward and upward. So who should I blame that I can’t build the business fast enough to keep up with my own demands? The economy? The product/service…maybe it’s not as good as I think it is? Or my attitude? Ding Ding Ding!!!!
We can blame the economy but there are success stories that come out every day of people who’ve beaten the odds. We can blame our product or service but, again, there are a million ways people are making money every day that might seem odd to most. I like to compare this journey to driving a car. When we are taught to drive, we are told that in order to switch lanes you don’t need to crank your wheel, you just need to look in the direction of the lane you want to be in and your car will follow. The same is true in business. As long as you sit and blame the world for your Dip, look at someone else thinking they have some magic key that you don’t or doubt your own abilities to be successful; you are leading your car into that lane…the lane heading the opposite direction of your goal.
Instead, let’s look towards the other lane….the one where you are a success, where everything falls into place easily; where your goals and balanced life exist…steer your car in that direction. You can never become successful if you don’t believe it first. Silly daydreaming to some perhaps but the only way you are going to reach your destination is if you point your car in the right direction.
“When you step to the ledge of all the light you have left, and you take that first step into the darkness of the unknown, one of two things will happen. There will be something solid for you step upon, or you will learn how to fly.” Unknown
Gwen Austin, RC Art Toys, Inventor of the Color Bug, www.rcarttoys.com
Mercy me, how many hats do we need to wear as mompreneurs? Sometimes I feel like I am in a complete whirlwind – and not because it is tornado season either…we just need to wear so many hats!!
Every day for the past couple of weeks has been different – every hat is out of the closet and piled up in the middle of my office floor. It’s a mess.
- Booking agent hat: Need to get a contract off for a performance, (have to find the right contract) and solidify some other performances.
- PR hat: Have magazines, mastheads and product review blog lists all over my desk. Need to write a Press Release that has to get done ASAP. Like everything else.
- Distributor/Shipper hat: Need to ship off product to several music reviewers at magazines -bubble wrap is being joyfully popped and pranced upon by my 7 year old son as I am typing.
-Performer hat: We sang at a private event Friday eve, a lovely winery Saturday eve and an out of town church service Sunday morn. I LOVE THIS HAT. Next to my Mommy hat, this is my favorite. We’ll be singing at the College World Series Opening Day and just learned we’ll be singing for the US Olympic Swim Trials!
-Record Label hat: Just got all our info on how to submit for the Grammy’s. I’m new to the Academy, so…its all a blur. Contacted a Grammy governor, have three pages of notes – in the middle of my office floor, with all the other hats.
-Vendor hat – sold products at all these events, and am regularly contacting stores and distributors.
-Advisor hat: Helped a client pick out music for an upcoming event. Need to learn two new songs by next Friday.
- Student hat: Spent time on the phone with fellow Mompreneur, beautiful Diana (Dee) Ennen, who is truly one of my mentors. She really helped me get focused today. Helped me pick an outfit to go with a few of those hats, so to speak.
- Mommy hat: My most prized hat!! Son has watched the Looney Tunes DVD so many times this week, he has it memorized. He’s pretending to be the road runner, and running through the piles on my office floor. We’re all getting cabin fever. Need to go swimming with my family – as soon as I’m done with work.
Tomorrow is Saturday. I am not going to work. I am going to clean my office. I will find some space for everyone of these beautiful hats that I truly cherish, and organize them on a shelf.
To stay motivated, I try to surround myself with messages and stories of inspiration.? (and of course a dose of Donny)? I recently read a story of a woman that spent 35 years planting 50,000 bulbs on 5 acres in the mountains one by one? What she created is a breathtaking view on an obscure mountain top. I would imagine that many people would think she was crazy. Haven’t each of us experienced that along our path?? What one can learn from her is the importance of moving toward your goal, even if it seems overwhelming at times. I think so many people want the finished product right now and if it doesn’t happen then they give up. We need to remember the journey is just as important as the destination. Make small goals and celebrate each of those goals along the way. So sit down right now and make a list of small goals you can commit to. Those goals can be as easy as compiling a weekly to-do list, hanging it in clear view and checking off at least one thing a day.
Another helpful way of making you stay on schedule is to commit to events that are scheduled ie craft shows, holiday shows, tradeshows. Many of the holiday shows are already taking applications for the November shows so start looking now. During my initial start up stage, I made a commitment to attend the FAO Toy Auditions to give myself a date to have my prototype completed. They are conducting them again this year http://www.fao.com/custsvc/custsvc.jsp?sectionId=234 .? It’s a GREAT way to get feedback from the industry. My second commitment was for the Toy Fair in NYC. http://www.toyassociation.org. Next year the show will be held Feb 15-18, 2009 but you need to start applying for space now. The bottom line is to create deadlines and commitments that don’t give you the ability to back-out.? It’s easy for each of us to put something off until tomorrow but when you know outside sources are relying on you, it makes you accountable.
Each one of these small goals will eventually lead you to your final destination…..if, in fact, there ever is a “final” destination. In the end, the days and years will pass one way or another so you can either sit back and enjoy the view you’ve created or live with the regret of the time wasted not pursuing your dream.
All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them Walt Disney?
My family (my Mom and my sisters) is notorious for going on “family diets.” We all start out with great intentions and lofty goals with rigid full-steam-ahead-rules of 3 pounds a week, and we’ll meet at moms house every Wednesday at 10 am and the-first-one-to-break-it-pays-everyone-200-dollar-penalties and so on and so on…then somebody breaks it and then everyone quits. I am every bit as guilty at breaking the “the family diet” as anyone in my family is, so I don’t blame any one in particular for this concept failing on an annual basis. This year, I told my family I’m not doing “the family diet” with them. Because it never works. By their reaction to my “defiance,” you would think I had committed a mortal sin. So when I caught word of “the family diet” fading off into the sunset, with no positive results (again), I was not at all surprised.
This week on the Mompreneur boards, Gwen from RC Toys started a simple thread, asking what we are going to do this week to promote and market our products – our PR goals. It was a great thread – so I wrote out my goals for the week – basicly stuff that I am already working on, (which are normally a million different things at once) but it was great to s-p-e-l-l -i-t -o-u-t. It made this cluttered ongoing mess of projects in my brain a lot more do-able. Well, actually they are always being done, but this way I was able to look back at the end of the week and realize I am constantly moving forward, and not just spinning my wheels (kind of like the dry erase board, in a mini version.) There were no “rules”, no “penalties” – so simple and uncomplicated – just do what we can and be accountable – to ourselves first and foremost, and to each other, just for fun. And it worked.
It was so cool to see what we all accomplished or didn’t accomplish throughout the week – and it was all okay, we supported each other – and it was fun. I hope we do it again.
I’m new to blogging with Mompreneurs, so I feel honored to start out today, having just received some great news, which I’ll share in a minute. But it has all happened because of setting goals on a dry erase board. 10 or so years ago, I purchased a huge dry-erase board. It has been the center focus of my office, in the last 3 places I have lived.
I started it one January, and wrote all of my short term (1 year) and long term (2-5 year) goals and things that I need/hope to accomplish on the board . As the year progressed, I’d refer to the board regularly, not always consciously, but it was always there. I now do this every year.At the beginning of the new year, my brother and I visit the board, check off all the things we accomplished, re-assess what wasn’t, and set new goals for the year. Then we high five all that was accomplished and wipe the board clean and start anew. (This year, cuz we’ve been so dang busy, we weren’t able to get to this til yesterday, but I’m glad it was somewhere in the first quarter!)
WOW!! We accomplished over 95% of the things we set out to do last year!!! What an amazing feeling!!! As we wiped clean each goal met, I felt amazingly proud! I had to pull my hubby and son in the room just to show them how empty the board was!!!?2007 was a great year (and a quarter!) And 2008, even with the Writer’s strike, we are kickin’ butt in the goals department.
By the way, “finding other Moms online that are in business” was one of my goals – and it lead me here to Mompreneurs Online – one of the happiest goals I’ve met this year! The other on the top of my list – win a Grammy for 2009 – I am now an official voting member for the Academy, as of yesterday!! “Stardust” will be submitted for Grammy consideration at the latter half of the year. I also just received a letter a couple of hours ago that we have been selected to sing the National Anthem at the 2008 College World Series – OPENING DAY!!? Two years ago, this reality was just simply a hopeful dream? written on a dry erase board!
What are your wildest dreams?? Write them down.??Visualize?them every day. Take the daily steps you need make?them happen, and before you know it those dreams?are unfolding just for you.
Music Mom Cher