After spending 16 years running six businesses, I’ve learned a thing or two about what it really takes to create success as an entrepreneur. And I’ll tell ya, most of what my Mom told me-and most of what I believed going into the first four businesses-turned out to be dead wrong.
In each of my early businesses, the busier I got the more of my life I gave up. Soon I was working ridiculous hours but I didn’t have a whole lot in my bank account to show for it. On top of that, I was basically chained to my computer.
Since my vision of success was working 25-30 hours a week and having plenty of time to ski, mountain bike, kayak and travel, I wasn’t too happy about the whole “you gotta give up your life to start a business” concept. But I did it. And frankly, it didn’t get any better until I decided to hell with that…There has to be another way!!
Thank goodness I found it! To help you get on the road to creating the business-and life-you’ve always dreamed of, below are ten simple rules I’ve developed that helped me unchain myself from my business, create more success, and enjoy my life WAY more.
1. It’s up to you. Anyone who wants to have a successful, thriving business-and a fulfilling personal life-should be able to. Remember, it’s your business and your life. You have the power to make them be any way you want.
2. Marketing isn’t an optional expense. It’s a mandatory investment in the success of your business.
3. Health and happiness are critical. Sleep, get exercise, eat healthy, enjoy a hobby and take care of yourself. You always attract more success when you feel your best.
4. Have fun. If it isn’t fun make it fun, don’t do it at all, or find someone else to do it for you!
5. Redefine success on your terms. Success is not defined by how many hours you work in your business, but by how many hours you’re able to spend NOT working in it!
6. Be yourself. It’s better to be yourself versus what you think others want you to be-even in business. These days the best branding is personable, authentic and unique.
7. Spend some time unplugged each week. Go out in the woods or a park or a lake somewhere where you can hear yourself think. Voice mail and off buttons exist for a reason.
8. Just do it. While it’s always good to do research and analysis, at some point you just have to trust your gut, make a decision and take action.
9. It’s not what happens that matters, but how you deal with it. Changes that seem forced on you are almost always a good thing for your business in the long run (IE “The universe knows more than you do. Stop fighting it.”).
10. Face your fears. The very things that scare you the most when it comes to marketing and growing your business are probably the things you most need to be doing.