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Overcommitting vs Undercommitting {Episode 19}

business how-to Jul 27, 2023
woman modeling

One of the biggest mistakes I see newbie entrepreneurs making is either undercommitting to their business or putting SO much unnecessary pressure on it that it crumbles and fails.

In the first instance, your business never even has a fair shot at success. In the second, it can't handle all the stress! Striking the right balance between the two is key to a fun, exciting business that serves you for years to come.

In this episode, I'll teach you how to embrace your business with enough of an emotional and financial investment, without expecting it to support you right out of the gate. I'll also show you how and why to approach your business like the experiment that it is and discover where things aren't well optimized.

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Last week we talked about the how being BELIEF, but today I am going to give you some of the how so you can stop killing it with pressure.

I see one of two temptations for new businesses: treat it like a hobby (never investing enough money or emotion so it never has a real shot but you're never disappointed) OR treating it with so much pressure and intensity that you kill it because you expect so much of it before it's even off the ground.

I've talked before about how business is simply a science project with lots of little experiments. This is how we create our path with just the right amount of commitment. It's like reading a chapter of a Choose Your Own Adventure book and deciding if we like that outcome. If not, we start over with that experiment and try to get a better outcome.

I have a great guest coming to talk about and explain customer paths and how to create the perfect marketing funnel but here are the basics: A stranger becomes aware of your business/product, then they become interested and start getting your emails/seeing posts and coming to your site, then they become motivated to purchase (cold- warm- hot).

Essentially you're gradually gaining people's interest and trust in order for them to invest their time and money. So if you're not seeing "success", it's because one of these steps is broken. All you have to do is experiment and figure out which one it is.

EXAMPLE: let's say you want to start an Etsy shop. Create a few things and list them! Then observe what happens. Depending on your results, you can shift and pivot. If people aren't coming to the shop, you have a marketing problem. People are coming but not buying? You have a messaging problem. People buying and not returning? You have a product problem.

The reason we approach our business like an experiment instead of your "passion" or "life's work" is that experiments are, by defintion, works in progress. We can't get too attached to any particular product, messaging or process in our business until we know if it works.

People with failing businesses are those that are attached to specific parts (and they're not working). By neutrally and calmly examining each step of our process, we can figure out what needs to change.

Your business is not your baby, it's a vehicle to your "why". If you find yourself putting way too much pressure and drama on your business, let's reevaluate your why! Keep it light, keep it fun and stay curious.

Pressure and intensity are the death knell to a business. A new business can't withstand that kind of pressure and it often crumbles. If your "why" is big and scary right now, you might want to break it down into smaller, more manageable goals in order to not get stuck.

For example: let's say that your big dream is to make enough money to support your family and allow your husband to retire from the job he hates. That can seem scary, big and completely out of reach (FYI, it's not!). Maybe instead, you start with wanting to make enough money to simply cover gas for the month. And once that happens, you work on making enough to cover the utility bill.

Or maybe you've never sold anything at all and you wonder if you can! By looking at your business idea like a fun experiment, you can calmly and curiously poke at all the steps a customer goes through and see what's not working.

If you really want your business to succeed, you have to be willing to scrap everything and start over. That's rarely neessary, but the minute we get to attached to a process, product or idea, we become vulnerable to staying stuck with something that doesn't work.

Stay calm, stay curious, and get excited for the ride ahead. You get to change anything that's not working at any time! That's the magic of your own business.

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