NOTE: I recorded this episode before the world changed pretty dramatically. We'll be talking about how to manage all this in upcoming episodes of the podcast. We're in this together.
Why do you feel stuck? Why isn’t your business growing? It could be one of these mistakes that are common in creative businesses. I want to help you avoid these mistakes, so let’s dive right in.
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I’ve been working with product makers – yarn dyers, bag sewers, jewelry makers – and designers and shop owners for the last decade! I’ve been getting up close and personal with them, in my community, the Starship, since 2011. So I have seen a lot of what holds us back in our business, and what to do in order to move forward with confidence and profit.
Today I wanna talk about three of the mistakes I see makers and designers make, in their thinking, that holds them back. If you want to avoid the three mistakes most creatives make in running their business, check out my free workshop on the 4 Foundation Method to a Thriving Business, where I explain the mistakes AND teach you how to avoid them (or fix them if you’ve already made them!).
This is not about shaming you. If you recognize yourself in the mistakes I’m about to share, that’s ok. Realizing you’re making a mistake is the first step to fixing it! So there’s no shame about making mistakes, there’s only learning and changing going forward. Ok? Ok!
Here are the mistakes so many of us make in our thinking:
MISTAKE #1: Waiting for everything to be ready.
Here’s the quick solution for this: Recognize that everything will NEVER be ready.
Waiting for things to fall into line, for the timing to be right, for the technology to all work will leave you waiting for the rest of your life.
One of the first questions I got last week was about how much of my journey I had planned or if I went with the flow. The truth is I had NO idea where my business journey would lead. I could have NEVER imagined the work I do now or the life I have now. There is no way to plan for what your customers are going to want from you in 2 years or 5 years. You can only show up today and listen to your customers and learn. You learn through trial and error over and over again.
Nothing will every be ready because you’re not going to know any of those things you’ll learn BEFORE you get started.
And if you’re waiting for your plan to be perfect, you’re going to be too attached to it. If you act when it’s PERFECT, then you’ll think it’s too perfect to change and adapt, and it will absolutely fail if you don't adapt. So you see a “perfect” plan that you wait for, is doomed to fail.
So just get started today with what you do know and be prepared to fail and learn and try something else.
MISTAKE #2: Waiting for YOU to be ready.
Guess what? You’re never going to be ready!
And you’ll certainly never FEEL ready!
And that’s ok, you are allowed to do what you want to do even before you feel ready!
Because, just like your business, you are going to learn from DOING. You are going to be the kind of person who has the business youw ant by DOING what the business you want needs you to do.
And if you really feel like you’re not good at DOING things, I have news for you!
You do not need to be BETTER, you need a plan for how to follow-through. You need a plan that’s built from who you actually ARE, not who you wish you WERE.
This is why I talk about the 4 Tendencies so much (go to episode 122 to learn more about the 4 tendencies) – if you know how you best work, you can make a plan that works FOR YOU. If you need accountability in order to get stuff done, by all means, get accountability! If you need to work from a list, work from a list!
If you need to listen to the reasons why you need to something, well, that’s part of my teaching style – I will tell you exactly WHY we do things in our business.
Don’t wait to be ready, decide you’re ready enough, embrace who you are and create a plan that works for you.
MISTAKE #3: Being afraid of other people’s opinions.
Oh man, I feel this one, deeply! It’s why I’ve done a few podcasts episodes about exactly this! (episodes 270 + 271 ). Most of us get stuck in this mistake from time to time, whether we’re just starting or we’ve been in business for a decade.
When makers join my free Facebook group (fb.com/groups/taraswiger )I ask them what’s holding them back, and would you be relieved to know that over a quarter of respondents say something about fear and other people’s approval (or disapproval)? But they’re definitely not alone!
Just like the other mistakes, this one can be avoided by changing your belief.
First, realize that other people aren’t thinking of you that much. (How often do YOU spend judging other people’s behavior and actions?).
Very few people are thinking or judging you.
The next question is: so what? DO you even know for sure that they will disapprove? If so, do you want them to run your life?
Do you want to stay where you are? Frozen by their (perceived) opinions?
If not, that’s the belief switch: Realize that you are not AFRAID of their opinion, you actually don’t care to live your life by their opinion.
So there you have it – 3 mistakes you may be making in the way you’re THINKING of your business. The next step is to look at the mistakes you’re making in RUNNING your business.
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