Aug 2, 2017
I have a story to share with you today, and it’s something that has been kind of hard for me to discuss. I wrote a blog post about this topic about a year ago, and I really wanted to talk about this again.
I see a lot of entrepreneurs who are not taking ownership of their business and success. They’re not claiming the fact that they’re the person that’s dictating and determining their success and creating that legacy.
To illustrate this, I wanted to share my own experience. I’ve dealt with insecurity about this for a while. My marketing coaching company is my business that I have right now, and it’s my third business. My first business was a photography business that I started when I was 19. I also started a health blog when I was about 20 or 21, which was profitable for me as well.
To be honest, though, I didn’t call these businesses. They were making me money, but I just called them side gigs or ventures - it was a mindset thing for me.
When I started my coaching business, I was not taking it as seriously as I probably could. It’s funny because I didn't even realize that I was doing this. I thought I was taking it seriously and was super dedicated to growing my business - which I was, but something was missing.
Of course, I was committed to it, but the piece that was lacking for me was the proper mindset. Let me explain. So, in the first year or so of my business, I was struggling a lot with getting over specific income thresholds. I was still working my 9-5 and continued to do so for about a year and a half before I actually quit.
I was making money from my business, but something I kept coming up against was, how could I possibly support myself with this? I felt that people weren’t taking me seriously and this was reflected to me almost every time I went to a conference or networking event. I just didn't feel like I was good enough. I was surrounded by older men and women who did not want to talk to me, and I would think to myself, what am I doing here?
All of these insecurities of not feeling like I was enough would come up. I didn’t want to be this buttoned up person, and I was trying so hard to fit in. I was striving to be this person that could feel like I belonged and to be taken seriously. This was such a profound insecurity for me when I started my business, and it was really hard for me to take ownership.
I was blind to the fact that I have control over whether I blow up or choose to retreat and stay in my 9-5 forever.
I needed to overcome the preconceived notions that I had about what success and being taken seriously looks like. For some reason, I had it in my head that to be respected and have the level of success I wanted, I had to be this buttoned up person. I thought that in order to fit in I had to be very professional, never curse, not have fun hair, and be super conservative. I felt that I needed to say all the right things and continue to impress people with my knowledge - it was just ridiculous.
All of these things as a whole were giving me a lot of insecurity and anxiety; even about meeting people and getting out there in a bigger way. I didn’t realize that this was an issue for me until I was working with a particular coach back in 2015, and was trying to get to my first 10k month. Every single month I would be at 6, 7, 8, 9, but I would not be able to break past that 10k; I thought, what is happening here?
What we realized was the fact that I didn’t feel worthy of reaching that 10k mark. In my mind, when I reached that mark, it meant I could quit my 9-5 and take myself seriously. This would mean that I could focus on my business and not waiver or stab myself in the back by believing all of these things that I was already struggling with. It was me against me, and that’s usually what it is when it comes to mindset blocks.
You’re typically the only person that’s standing in your own way of breaking through and having the success that you desire.
I know this because I was running a hat selling summer, which is a program all about making as many sales as possible. Some of my clients were struggling with thoughts like, “Well, my clients aren’t going to want this,” or “I don’t think I can do this.” Realistically, 95% of this doubtful thinking was just them getting in their own way. They weren’t getting out there and doing the work by putting their all into these campaigns and making money.
Instead, they were making excuses for why it would fail.
It is a process of being able to break through barriers and understand that you are the only person that’s going to determine what will and will not work in your business.
As soon as you’re able to break through these things and pull yourself out of the equation, you’re going to be shocked at what you can achieve. A lot of times people are surprised that there’s someone new in the market place that within six months is at six figures. How are they able to do this? Well, they most likely already had a solid mindset game in place. It wasn’t even an option for them to come against things that were not real.
Your mindset blocks, fears, and doubts are not real; these are things you make up to stay inside your comfort zone.
I am not free of this, and to be honest, I don’t think we will ever be free of this altogether. We consistently have to break through and stay aware of the blocks that we are faced with. For me, I needed to make sure that I surrounded myself with people that are successful, and not just in the traditional sense. I needed to find examples of young entrepreneurs - millennial entrepreneurs - that were rocking it and making bank.
I wanted to find people that looked different, that had fun hair, that said whatever they wanted, cursed and weren’t the most popular opinion. I needed to find examples of this to prove to myself that my belief was bullshit since there was evidence showing me just that. I wanted to point to the contrary of what I already believed so that I could shift my mindset.
The second part of this process for me was surrounding myself with people that would tell me I was on the right path. I love feedback and really like that reassurance that I’m on the right track. I don’t need this as much as I used to, thankfully, since I now rely on my own guidance a lot more. But, when I was at the beginning of breaking through, I needed my coach to tell me that I could do it consistently.
I needed her to remind me that I was an amazing, badass entrepreneur. I had to become that mirror, in a way, that I wanted to see myself in and I wouldn't have been able to do that without a coach. Eventually, I was able to face my fears and go to these events and just rock it. It does start with pretending a little bit; stepping into being that person you desire to become.
I needed to replace those prior beliefs with new, positive ones instead. I had to inject them purposely into my brain and consistently tell myself these things over and over again until they became true. Once you do this for a while, things are actually going to start shifting, and you will begin to reap the rewards.
No one can help you take ownership - you are the only person that can take that control over your own success and business.
You are the only person that can start taking yourself seriously and seeing your business as a company. This is such a huge thing because then you are not just in a business, you are not just a freelancer, you’re not just a coach - you actually have a company and are here to leave a legacy.
You are here to make an impact and a difference in the world, and you can only do that when you get out of your own way and continue to move forward powerfully.
No matter what comes up, you're going to move forward because this is bigger than you. It’s not just about you wanting to make a few extra bucks. When you’re clear about why you’re doing something in the first place, you’re able to continue in a strong, powerful, rock star kind of way. It’s possible for you to break through, too, if you’re also struggling with this.