So you left the cubicle to start your own adventure. You thought the soul sucking days were over but you’ve now realised that running a business is a little harder than you first thought. There is so much to do and so much to learn. Your mind never lets you rest and you start to wonder if you’ll ever figure this business stuff out.
Like any new adventure, there will be good days and bad. There will be new skills you need to learn and a ton of knowledge you get to take with you. But do you really need to pack everything in your trusty back pack as you head up the mountain? Nope!
The trick is learning what to use and what to leave behind.
I’m a terrible packer and each time we go away I always pack too much ‘just in case’. Do I ever use everything I take? Never.
I once climbed a big mountain (Mt Kinabalu in Borneo) and when everyone turned up with teeny tiny backpacks, mine was twice the size. I thought I was super prepared and wondered how on earth they would survive with so little.
I realised about half way up the mountain that the extra weight was slowing me down. It was making the trek harder than it was meant to be. I soon realised that I would actually be better off without half the stuff I’d packed.
It’s the same when running your business. Just because you have a ton of knowledge and can help people in many ways, doesn’t mean you have to. This only makes the climb harder for you as you stretch yourself too thin and wear out in the process.
Your business starts to suck the life out of you just as my overloaded backpack sucked the life out of my legs.
My advice is to simplify and cut down on what you’re trying to offer. The good and bad news about running your own business is that it’s all up to you. Yes you have to do most of the work, but you also get to decide what type of work you do.
Take a look at the services you offer.
- Are they streamlined and on message with what you’re trying to create?
- Are they packaged up nicely so the client doesn’t have to think too hard about what they really need?
- Are they sustainable (emotionally and financially) for you and your business?
Now take a look at your marketing.
- Are you trying to cover all social platforms?
- Are you trying to implement 10 different strategies all at once?
- Are you trying to serve the masses or a smaller group just perfect for what you have to offer?
Don’t let your business suck the life out of you. You started this adventure to get your life back, to build something you love. Take control of it and create something that sustains you every day.
If I’d asked for advice on what to pack from more experienced climbers I’d have been a lot better off, but I tried to use my best judgement. I made it to the summit but my legs hated me for days. I’ve now learnt that if I’m new at something or not sure what to do, I ask for help.
Seek out those who are a few steps ahead of you and save yourself the heartache (and leg ache) of over-packing in your business.
Now I know I’m not the only one who over packs, so tell me, is there something you’ve over-packed in your business?
Don’t settle for where you are if it’s not where you want to be.