As the summer approaches, it’s common to get the lazy summer fever and spend your time planning vacations and outdoor barbeques. Well at least for me, that’s what I want to do more of. But the reality of my situation sets in that I truly don’t have it like that. I still have to hustle to make this coin and be a responsible business owner. Now don’t get me mistaken for some work-a-holic who works all week with no play. I still make time for the occasional social BBQ (who would turn down a home-cooked meal? I’m not crazy). I do however, know how valuable it is to seek balance during my hours on the grind. It’s balance that aids me to be successful but along with that comes the use of a few habits that keep me focused on what’s important.
If you want to enjoy any downtime this summer and still reap the benefits of the entrepreneurial lifestyle, you must develop some personal stamina to last through it all. Three transferable skills that matter most in this game are organization, consistency and overall discipline. Do you have any of these traits? If not, you’re not gonna make it far. I’ve learned how to maximize my strengths as a project manager and pull thru those moments of frustration: when the sun is shinning bright and all you wanna do is enjoy it instead of working. (Trust me, I know the struggle is real!) It’s okay to get off track with your goals, but it’s not okay to be apathetic towards your future simply because you want to kick it all summer long.
From Myleik Teele, a smart business woman I follow online once said that she built her business by sacrifice and discipline. She started out as a creative entrepreneur in communications like myself and gradually grew into a serial business owner founding the largest beauty subscription service for women with curly hair (Curlbox.com). She gave up Friday nights when a deadline was more important. She developed discipline towards her business and making sure she honored that time on her calendar. This inspired me to look at the growth of my business entirely differently.
I once thought that if I started a business based on my natural talents, that making money would be easier. Essentially, that is true but it cannot happen without dedication toward growing that talent into an expertise that might make you stand out from other business owners. I now have a better outlook on how to be a successful entrepreneur. I want to be an expert at what I do. I want to be the only exception that someone makes to do business with. But how can I expect to be the best if I’m not putting my best foot forward?
My next move was to block out weekly time towards my projects and get in the habit of getting things done. Practice makes perfect and this is how I was going to get better at my talents and skills in order to excel. I got so motivated and consistent that I started a co-working meet-up series to invite other creative women into this realization. I invited women to meet bi-weekly at various coffee shops and meeting spaces with free wifi and it’s been going pretty well. Over a dozen different women have attended more than one session. I was surprised to see how many women wanted to grow as much as I did! Not every session was a packed house and sometimes I just got in a zone by myself. I was dedicated even if nobody was able to join me. As long as I was able to spark the idea in their head to be productive and for that reason I know they are effective.
As I continue to develop the skill to be consistent, organized and disciplined, I hope that my talents exceed my expectations. If you’re looking for some motivation to do the same, check out the podcast series by Myleik Teele on Podomatic or iTunes.