Today’s post is in part a response to my last one – You Are NOT An Entrepreneur.
One theme that I kept seeing in the responses and questions was “I can’t do it because…”
So today I want to give you some tips on how you CAN move forward and start working on your goals, right from where you are. The faster you start, the sooner you’ll get there. But the longer you stay stuck in your own mind and repeating thoughts of what you don’t have… well, it’s going to take you longer to reach the finish line.
What you can you do TODAY to get started? What help do you need from others? Don’t be afraid to ask, even here. You’d be surprised at the resources that already exist for you.
It’s been really difficult for me to write lately, as I’ve felt frustrated.
Sometimes I feel that my message is not getting through to you. Sometimes I feel that people don’t see how important it is to act today.
I hope today’s post really inspires you to take action on your goals and realize that today is all we have.
Are you an entrepreneur? Have you learned how to push past your fear and move toward your dream?
You know what’s crazy? As motivated as I am, and as good as I’ve gotten at working through fear – I’m not so great at recognizing my own perfectionism.
One of my goals this year is to improve the quality and frequency that I post Youtube videos. I watched numerous videos on how to make them better, I researched different techniques and read blog posts. I even created my own mini studio in my apartment and had alot of fun constructing my own green screen.
Can you guess what happened next?
I spent sooo much time trying to make things perfect that I started neglecting everything else – this blog, my marketing efforts, reaching out on social media and networking. I was laser focused on getting the videos ‘right’ – that I let everything else fall by the wayside. In the grand scheme of life, video doesn’t matter that much. But I just couldn’t let it go. I was married to the vision in my head of how I wanted things to be and I had to literally make myself stop working on the video aspect.
Important Lesson For Me
Now that we’re living in this digital age, it’s extremely easy to get caught up in the wrong things. One of the biggest realizations I made last year was that alot of entrepreneurs are busy working on the wrong things; if it’s not a money-making activity then it needs to be outsourced or not focused on. I don’t mean that entrepreneurs need to be super focused on making money – but that does need to be the focus. If we were here to help people and weren’t concerned about being paid for our services, we’d just be volunteers. And if we weren’t here to earn enough to take care of ourselves, our businesses would just be hobbies.
Allowing myself to work on something until it matches the image in my head is dangerous. I have the cushion of a full time job now, but I won’t always have that. I can’t afford to spend so much time wrapped up in something that I neglect the other things I should be doing. The easiest way for me to get around that is to continually check in with myself and keep the objective of the task in mind. Of course I want everything I do to be performed to the best of my ability – but I also want to help people and produce great content. So if a task takes longer than I’ve anticipated, I need to ask myself what the holdup is and how can I bring the task to completion quickly.
I also need to practice my ability to release what I’m doing and be okay with things not being ‘perfect’. Because honestly, that’s something that will never exist.
Here’s the latest video I created. In the end, I didn’t get the software and green screen configuration working properly, so I had to reshoot the video. I could’ve posted it weeks ago had I let go of my perfectionism. So this was a good learning experience for me, as well as the opportunity to help others with their goals.
How does perfectionism affect you and your goals? How do you push past the urge to keep working until your task is perfect?
Today, I’m inspired by Karol Gadja’s post over at his blog. He writes about making the decision, early in his life, to be a business owner.
When did you make that decision? When did you first know you wanted to be an entrepreneur?
For me, the decision came in high school. Somewhere along the way I’d made the correlation that my parents worked very hard, but didn’t have alot of money. There was a time when my dad worked 2 jobs, but it didn’t seem to increase our finances. So I decided that in order to control the amount of money I made, I didn’t want to work for anyone else. I’d say I decided this in the 10th grade, and I majored in Business Administration during my first year of college.
My professors discouraged me from this path. Why not go work in Corporate America for at least 5 years, THEN start my own business? I couldn’t see the point in that. Managing staff for a Fortune 500 company didn’t make sense to me, when I’d probably have a very small staff and need a different set of skills than a corporate job would give me. Plus I just didn’t want to. I can’t begin to tell you how disheartening it was for me to be dissuaded from this lifelong dream, in favor of building someone else’s business.
I still think I made the right decision for me, especially in light of how business models have changed since I was in college.
When did you first know you wanted to be an entrepreneur? How has your path evolved since then? I’d love to hear your story.
Maybe it’s just me, but the end of 2011 was a real doozy.
It seemed like almost everyone I knew experienced tragedy of some kind. Whether they were laid off, a loved one died, or they battled a health crisis, I just kept hearing of bad things happening to good people.
Do you think this year will be better? Here’s a better question – what do you plan to do to make it better?
I have big plans for 2012 and I hope you do too! Create a list of your expectations – we receive what we expect, not just what we hope or wish for! Post it near your desk so you look at it every day. Then go out and do the work to cause your expectations to come into your life.
Here are 12 expectations I have for 2012:
- I expect greater abundance. This year, I expect the ability to quit my day job and run my coaching business full time. I’ve created a marketing plan and I will follow the plan to attract more clients.
- I expect greater joy.
- I expect love. I expect to attract and date wonderful men, and I expect that I’ll start a committed, romantic relationship this year. I also expect that I’ll strengthen my bonds with family and friends and to support those who are moving forward in their lives.
- I expect fun. I expect to enjoy myself! All work and no play makes Anilia a very dull girl. I expect to do more of the things I love and enjoy.
- I expect happiness. I expect to have time to do the small things that bring me happiness for no reason. I expect to find more of these things that I hadn’t realized before.
- I expect good health. I expect to release unhealthy eating habits and excess weight. I expect to gain mental clarity, better health, restful sleep and to enjoy eating healthy, unprocessed foods. I also expect to become more physically fit and to exercise daily.
- I expect new experiences. In order to learn new things and reach greater success, I have to push myself out of my comfort zone. I expect to meet new people and do different things, which will cause me to view life and the people in my world just a bit differently. I expect to have new experiences as a result.
- I expect expanded vision. I expect to read more, expand my mindset and believe in new possibilities. I also expect to improve my mindset in the areas that need improvement.
- I expect new relationships. From the new experiences I’ll have in 2012, I expect to gain lifelong colleagues and friends who are also high achievers and forward moving. I also expect to meet mentors who will help me reach the next level of my business success and in life.
- I expect new perspectives. From the expansion of my mindset and social circle, I expect to learn how to look at things more efficiently. I also expect to improve my ability to think outside of the box.
- I expect greater wealth. I expect to learn more about investing and other ways to grow financially. I expect to improve my mindset about money and attract even more into my life. I expect the new experiences and relationships I’ve formed to positively influence my wealth.
- I expect renewal. I expect to receive enough rest and to adequately care for myself. I expect minimal illness or injury. I expect to feel refreshed and energized.
What expectations do you hold for 2012? And how can I help you realize those expectations in your life?
I’m familiar with what it takes to start a business and each step along the way. But that doesn’t mean I’m immune to the fear, self-doubt and worry that can come along when you put yourself and your ideas out there.
Sometimes you can get so paralyzed by the fear that other people will tell you ‘no’, that you don’t even put yourself in the game. And that’s really sad.
Because that is simply confusing one person’s opinion with your worth. For example, if someone looks at one of my shirts and doesn’t like them, I’ve come to learn that that’s just their opinion – their opinion isn’t a measure of what my business or my product is worth. Just as someone’s good opinion isn’t a measure of worth for me. Ultimately, I set my own worth – my opinion is the only one that truly matters.
How We Hold Ourselves BackI’ve found that we limit ourselves in alot of ways because we subconsciously seek outside approval. I think this is caused by being attached to the outcome of what we do. It’s not enough for us to start a business and do something we love – if other people don’t validate our worth, then we tell ourselves that we’re not good enough.
Here are four ways entrepreneurs hold themselves back, and strategies to get around them:
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I was talking to a close friend the other day about a big idea she has. Her excitement was so contagious and her vision was definitely one I appreciated. Then, the next day, she told me that she shared that vision with someone else, who called her crazy.
Has this ever happened to you?
It’s frustrating sometimes. You see things differently than the people around you. Instead of those people respecting that, they’ll call you crazy, and say things like “good luck with that!” or just shake their heads. Why are things that are different necessarily bad?
We don’t all have to agree. Heck, we all don’t agree and rarely do. So it’s not like someone with a different outlook, a different goal or a huge aspiration is something new.
Let’s look at a few people who were called crazy for wanting something different:
Click Here For The Crazies
Today I realized that I’ve been playing kinda small, and for that I apologize to you guys.
For as long as I remember, I’ve been passionate about entrepreneurship. I’m naturally a big dreamer and you guys know that I love to inspire others, drop an encouraging word and contemplate how great we all can be. But in my quest to build this blog, I got lost in the sauce somewhere.
Lately I’ve been more concerned with popularity than the value I give to you - with the number of subscribers and Facebook fans I have, how I measure up to similar bloggers, the kind of recognition I could receive from this. When all of that isn’t the point, and never was.
I lost sight of the fact that this isn’t about me – it’s about you.
When I stay true to my core self, you guys benefit. When I’m excited, when I’m motivated, when I’m growing, I can better take you along with me. Since I veered off someplace else, it’s been hard for me to write. Since I wanted to put a glossy finish to everything, I wasn’t being the best me I can be and my words and thoughts have stopped flowing like they used to. I didn’t want to show you my mistakes, didn’t want to look too close at what’s not working or admit that I could do better – because that would mean I’m not doing my best now.
How does the saying go? The truth shall set you free?
In my effort to include as many people as I could in my blog audience, I wasn’t including myself. I was trying to write about what I thought you guys needed, which resulted in me leaving out the things I’m most excited about – entrepreneurship, and lifestyle design and optimal living. And in the end I wasn’t writing about what either of us ultimately need.
So that’s where my focus will be, from now on. I realize that some of you aren’t into those topics and won’t come along with me, and I’ll come to terms with that. If, at the end of the day, there’s only one person here – me – I’ll be okay with that. This isn’t a personal blog, even though I write about personal topics sometimes - my mission is to motivate you. But if you are looking for something else than what I have, that’s okay too.
The biggest part of this change is that I’ll write more about topics that I haven’t become proficient at yet. I’m still building my business empire and becoming the person that I dream about growing into, and it’s not an easy thing to publicly say “hey, I’m not there yet”. But that’s some of what I’ll be doing here.
So what do you guys think about my shift in focus? At the end of the day, we don’t all have the same dreams, and I want to help as many of my readers as I can reach the dreams I’m best able to motivate you guys to pursue.
I have been remiss in my duties as Motivation Maven – how could I have neglected to feature Madam CJ Walker??
She serves as a fountain of inspiration for countless African American female entrepreneurs, myself included. If you have not encountered her inspiring story, let me introduce her to you.
- Madam C.J. Walker was born Sarah Breedlove on December 23, 1867 in Delta, Louisiana. Her parents Owen and Minerva Breedlove, both ex-slaves, were sharecroppers who lived on the Burney plantation. She had 5 siblings. Her mother died first, possibly due to a cholera outbreak in 1872 (when she was 5). Her father remarried and died shortly afterward when she was 7.
- Sarah moved in with her older sister, Louvenia, and brother-in-law, Willie Powell. She later said she married Moses McWilliams when she was 14 years old to escape Powell’s abuse. Three years later her daughter, Lelia (called A’Leila) McWilliams, was born.
- When Sarah was 20, her husband was murdered by a white lynch mob. Shortly afterward she moved to St. Louis where three of her brothers were barbers. For 20 years she did backbreaking work as a washerwoman in Vicksburg and St. Louis. While working as a laundry woman, she was able to save money, educate A’Lelia, and join the National Association of Colored Women in the 1880s. In 1894 Sarah married a man named John Davis. That marriage ended around 1903. In January 1906 she married a newspaper sales agent, Charles Joseph Walker. After her marriage she began using the name Madam CJ Walker. They divorced in 1910.
Click Here To Continue
This is the first interview for Motivated Sista and I truly believe you’ll enjoy it.
How inspiring is that!
Can you tell I was nervous? I was worried that I’d pronounce Karol’s name wrong, my voice would crack (I was getting over a sinus infection), or that my computer would freeze and jack everything up. But the important thing was to feel the fear and do it anyway .
Highlights from the call:
- Karol’s inspiration to be a hustler
- Why freedom isn’t for everyone and how people hold themselves back
- How the Mind Control Method can help you reach your goals
- How the law of attraction is a scam
- Why he gave his work away
- The mindset to get unstuck
You’ll love this interview if you aspire to a mobile traveling lifestyle (as I do), if you like immersing yourself in different mindsets, or if you’d like to hear the perspective of an online business owner.
Links to Karol:
Karol’s blog, Ridiculously Extraordinary
Karol on Twitter
The American Dream Is Dead (free ebook)
The Mind Control Method
How did this interview inspire you today? Let me know in the comments.