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Some Tough Love {Episode 28}

business emotions mindset Sep 28, 2023
woman thinking at computer

We start our businesses for a variety of reasons: we want fulfillment, extra income and/or to make the world a better place. But what happens when things get boring, hard or frustrating? What do we do when we get stuck, and can't pull ourselves out of a metaphorical hole?

That's what today's tough love episode is all about. I know you often struggle with confidence in yourself and your business, but I KNOW how talented you are and that you have something so valuable to offer the world. So trust me when I say that no amount of hesitating and procrastinating will get you closer to your goal.

Borrow my belief if you need to, but just get moving. All your dreams are on the other side of this next step!

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Today's episode will be a little bit of a kick in the pants for all of us who struggle to get moving! Admittedly, I often struggle with thinking before I dive in; I really like to lean into that action line of the model!

But whenever there is fear, overwhelm or insecurity, there will be hesitation, procrastination and avoidance.

First, let's define what it is you're avoiding or procrastinating. Is it getting a degree or training? Is it telling people what your business does (or want it to do)? Is it building a website? Once you've identified what's keeping you stuck, we have to figure out why! You're telling yourself a story about this thing that is keeping you from moving forward.

A few stories I've heard: I'm not good at technology, I don't know what I'm doing, I'm scared of failure, I don't want people judging me, what if this isn't the right path? I'm gonna give it to you straight: you probably ARE terrible at tech, don't know what you're doing, will experience failure, have people judge you and change paths. But so what? You could be moving forward and experiencing all of those things, or you could be exactly where you are right now, in a year and have nothing to show for your time. "One often meets his destiny on the road he takes to avoid it"
- Master Oogway from Kung Fu Panda
You think that by procrastinating this next project or taking that leap, you'll be saving yourself pain and suffering, but what is involved with the pain of staying stuck right where you? What is it that you're trying to escape? What if you were going to feel those emotions anyway, but you wouldn't have the benefits (of a business) to counteract that negativity? In other words, what are you waiting for?

If it's something real (better childcare, youngest to hit kindergarten, etc) then that's one thing, but what if you don't actually know what it is And what if that "real" milestone you were waiting for was actually just a really good-looking excuse? These are very personal decisions... but sometimes we make decisions in favor of virtuous reasons that are really just pretty excuses. It's likely that you've lost some of that initial enthusiasm for your business. It was exciting and thrilling and being stuck feels...less so.

You're overwhelmed or maybe even bored and thinking about anything BUT your next step. Master of avoidance and procrastination. In Seth Godin’s book “The Dip,”, he discusses this valley of frustration that attacks almost every new initiative or project. He writes that: “Extraordinary benefits accrue to the tiny minority of people who are able to push just a tiny bit longer than most.”

What if your first client or customer was just on the other side of that task? What if your definition of success was just past this thing you're dreading so much? I can guarantee you one thing: it's definitely not on this side and it won't come from doing everything BUT that thing you're avoiding.

I want to give you a challenge: Identify the next logical step in your business (the one you're probably purposely avoiding) and write it down. Then write down the thoughts you're thinking about it: the fears, concerns, worries - everything that goes through your mind when you consider whether or not to push through. Then ask yourself "what's the worst that could happen?" and write it down. I promise that the worst thing is simply feeling something that you don't want to feel. Now I want you to ask yourself, what's the BEST that could happnen? And write it down.

Likely the reality is that it'll be somewhere in between! In my experience, the worst never actually happens, and the negative stuff feels bad but only for a brief period. AND the good stuff ends up being more amazing than I could've imagined, especially as you come more and more in alignment with where God is leading you.

As a final note, have you prayed about this part of your business? God might have some insight for you. Sometimes, when I'm stuck, I just pray to feel confirmation that I'm headed in the right direction. One step in the wrong direction is worth a month wondering if it's the right direction! Just get moving.

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