Since hopping on the entrepreneurial train to run my business full-time in 2014, I’ve seen people try to start businesses, thrive, succeed, and even fail. I have also listened to people who said they were tired of their 9–5, yet do absolutely nothing to change their situation.
So, what do you think it is that separates failed businesses from those that succeed? And what makes it possible for those who finally escape their 9–5 to live the BYOB (be your own boss) life?
Short answer: They keep the hustle going.
I’m sure there are some reading this post rolling their eyes, but my hope is that for the majority who do read this, it brings a sense of inspiration and motivation.
That said, here are 7 ways to keep the hustle going:
1. Set clear goals.
A Harvard study suggests 83% of people in the U.S. do not have goals. Goals held in the mind are more likely to be jumbled up with the other 1500 thoughts per minute that the average human being experiences.
I consistently come across people who tell me their goals but who, a year or so later, are still telling me about the exact same goals.
Why aren’t more people achieving their goals?
Here’s what happens: life. But why does that stop so many from achieving their goals in life and designing the type of life they truly want to live?
It comes down to two things: They haven’t set clear goals. Because they haven’t set goals, they also don’t take action toward achieving them.
Here’s how to get moving:
- Write down your goals (seriously, you become 42% more likely to achieve your goals and dreams if you write them down on a regular basis).
- Have a plan in mind. What are you going to do every day, every week, and every month to get closer to achieving your goals? Include milestones.
- Commit. Stop with the cheap talk and start executing.
2. Take massive action.
The only surefire way to get anything done is to take massive action. My mantra has always been more doing, less thinking and talking. That’s the best way to learn.
Think about it. If you’re learning to ride a bike, the only way you’ll get better is to actually keep doing it. More specifically, if you want to be the best at what you do, then push for progress.
Execution plays a critical role in knowing what works and what doesn’t. It’s okay to move fast and break things because the lessons you’ll learn along the way will help ensure that you avoid making the same mistakes in the future. They will also push you to become more resilient and push you toward a growth mindset.
3. Stop comparing yourself to others.
I’m not perfect. I find that I still do this from time to time. I see that the only person who can get me from point A to point Z is me. I make zero excuses as to why I’m where I want to be in life, and you should too.
Someone’s chapter 20 may sound incredible because, to you, it seems like it happened overnight. What you aren’t paying attention to is that someone’s overnight success took years to make happen.
I recently wrote more about How to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others, and here’s a quick snippet from that post:
The only competition in life is the competition you create. Look at how you can develop milestones for yourself so that you can get one step closer to living the kind of life that you want.
Rather than seeing everyone as your competition, appreciate the moments when others help you see better ways to do things. Watching others succeed can prevent you from becoming complacent and help you define your own potential.
If you want to catch up or get ahead, then stop wasting your time comparing yourself to others and start making it happen for yourself.
4. Be authentic.
Here’s what I’ve found over the years — not everyone is going to like you. People will either love you, hate you, or not care either way.
The point is, always be true to yourself. Being self-aware and knowing exactly what you want will help you stay on the right course.
Continue doing what you’re passionate about, hone your craft, and keep working hard. Authenticity isn’t about showcasing pictures and videos of what you think people will like across social media, your blog, website, etc. It’s about showing what happens behind the scenes as you push to scale your business and being real with the process.
Doing so provides an intimate point of connection with your audience. People don’t buy from companies; they buy from people. So, make sure you don’t lose sight of why you’re in business and doing what you can to create meaningful connections with your target audience.
5. Be really amazing at ONE thing.
In the world we live in, where information and inspiration are so easily accessible via social media and your mobile phone, it can be hard to focus on one thing.
Along the way, you’ll see those bright and shiny lights trying to lure you toward the newest and most amazing technology or the next billion-dollar company, but stay true to your course and what you do better than anyone else you know.
Trust me when I say you have to focus. Specifically, focus on that ONE thing you do really well. That’s where the magic happens. Therefore, starve your distractions. Home in on what you’re really good at, how you bring value to your target audience, and how you can monetize.
6. Don’t be afraid to fail.
I get it: Failure can feel humiliating and embarrassing. However, know that it is a part of success. As Will Smith once said, “Fail early, fail often, fail forward… Failure is a massive part of being able to be successful.”
How else are you going to learn what works and what doesn’t? So many people stop themselves from even beginning their next business venture because they’re so afraid to fail.
Push fear aside. Embrace failure. Know it’s not fatal. It’s all about what you do with the results and what you learn along the way. Take your learnings and push yourself to improve.
7. Don’t give up.
Most people give up right before they’re about to achieve success.
The journey will be long, and it will be trying, but know that if you’re truly going after your passions and crafting them, then it’ll all be worth it.
“Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.” ―Dale Carnegie
Your desire to succeed and mere belief in yourself should trump everything else. Know you’ll always have to do some things you don’t want to until you get to do that one thing you really want to be doing.
Greatness takes time. And you only have one story to tell that is completely unique to you. So, make it count.