Stop Chasing Dreams, Start Creating Success
Dreams are amazing. They are important. They make us happy. But what makes us happier is when our dreams become things and when our ideas become actions.
Most entrepreneurs go through a cycle of chasing bright shiny objects – new ideas, the “next best thing”, an opportunity that is hard to turn down.
Most entrepreneurs go through a cycle of “knowledge collecting” – signing up for every free program and every pricey “guru” created program.
Most entrepreneurs who create success eventually STOP THE MADNESS of chasing the dream and very happily settle into a formula of creating success. This formula has to be as unique as you or it won’t work.
Is now the time to stop chasing bright shiny objects and collecting knowledge and, well, get to work?
There is certainly a need to always have your eye out for new ideas and great information, but it MUST be driven with purpose and focus on what fufills you and achieves your personal and business goals. Otherwise, welcome to the little solopreneur dance of 2 steps forward, 1 step back.
How to move 10-steps forward to your next success:
When I start to feel like hyperventilating instead of acting, I pause to focus on my mission (to help other small business women grow with purpose and focus) and check in with the actions I am taking (or not) to meet my own goals (slow and steady but consistent financial and brand growth).
Specifically, these are the 10 steps I take… the 10 steps I help clients and mastermind participants work through… to get being an enthusiastic wheel-spinner into an action-taking superstar.
- Pick one goal. When you are stuck it’s important to focus on one thing. Choose one burning desire you know you are committed to seeing through and choose one new program, idea or project to start and complete to achieve that goal.
- Create a timeline. It can change, but choose somewhere to start. I recommend an 8-week or 12-week timeframe.
- Analyze your resources. Know specifically the time, money, energy, partnerships, champions, experience and information you have available to put towards your goal.
- Find what you don’t have but need. Often you will not have financial resources, and usually you don’t need much. But you will need creative thinking, hard work, effort to work through the steps you may be unsure about or didn’t want to make.Most people get stuck on this step. They analyze their resources and realize they lack – they often lack confidence so lack of money, lack of knowledge and lack of motivation soon follows. Don’t have lack. Take your list of what you don’t have and creatively work around it or you cannot move forward.
- Ask for or hire help that can be available to you to see the project through. Once you know the resources you have and the resources you need, you are in place to hire the right guru (find a local expert please – there is someone perfect in your backyard I promise) or barter for information. Many experts will give you a nugget of advice if you ask a specific question with a specific purpose. If you can’t barter, the more clear you are on the precise help you need, the less it will cost you.Don’t go it alone. Odds are, your lack of completion on this idea in the past is because you were winging it alone when you really need a wing-woman.
- Create a detailed to do list. It must include what you need to learn, what you need to do, who you need to help you do it.
- Add your time to implement the to do list to your calendar in detail. Use the to do list to create a timeline of activity. Be reasonable. Set an end date that you will commit to.
- Revisit your goal, resources, action steps, calendar every single week. Readjust all of them so you can just keep moving forward. Don’t be perfect. Be active in taking the steps to create success.Myth: once you create a goal and set the resources, you have to stick to them. Truth: Every project has moving pieces. Recognizing what to keep and what to change throughout a project is the smart (and fun) part of creating success. Be rigid on getting it done. Be flexible on how.
- Find an accountability partner. Get someone involved in what you are working towards who will be able to help you keep driving forward on a weekly basis. This could be your graphic designer, your spouse, a business BFF, your business coach or a mastermind group like the one I host. But tell someone what you are doing, why and give them your list of action items. Your request of them is to ask you specific questions of your progress every single week until the project is done. Ideally, they will also be knowledgable enough to steer you to keep going when you feel like quitting or get sidetracked!
- Be realistically tough on yourself, but don’t beat yourself up. When the kids get sick, when you overdo it and need a break, when you let a timeline slip because you had to watch all of Mad Men on Netflix, realize all of that is real life and it happens. Pat yourself on the back for taking care of the kids or yourself and move on. Reset the action plans, to do lists and timelines and keep moving forward. You will get there!
So, how are you doing? Are you still suffering from bright shiny object syndrome? Are you still getting stuck when you want to start? That’s okay. We cycle through these phases. But what is important is how long you stay in those cycles and if you have put some ideas into place to get you out.
Do these 10 steps help you? What step will help you propel forward fastest?