Have you ever had the feeling that it’s all too much?
That freelance life is just too hard and you’re not up to it.
You see all those ultra-professional, ultra-successful entrepreneurs and wonder how they did it. Got to where they are now.
How the hell they do it, when you’re scrabbling around and failing miserably.
Yup. Me too.
All the time.
All. The. Bloody. Time.
But you know what?
I’ll bet those ultra-successful folk that spike your insecurities (because, let’s face it, that’s what they are) are having the same feelings about other people they admire.
It’s just that we all have good days and we all have bad days, and usually when you’re having a bad day all those happy, smiley faces jump out at you and rub that salt a little bit deeper into your wounds.
It’s just a thing. It happens. And sooner or later the sun will come out, you’ll get back on the right track and things will start looking up.
How about a game?
If you’re struggling (and even if you’re not) here’s something to kick-start your common sense, no self-pity, ‘I can do this’ attitude.
It’s for fun, it isn’t scientific, it’s basically just something I made up for those URGH days!
Right, let’s go …
First, dry your eyes and put your big girl or big boy pants on.
Take a look at Mr or Mrs Perfect.
Take a really good look.
Realise they are just a person. They eat, sleep, pee and poo just like everyone else (I know, it’s a shock!).
Now, find one thing that you admire about this person professionally.
It could be the way they do business. The way they interact on social media. The way they have a gazillion LinkedIn connections. Their fabulous website. The way they market their business. Anything.
Remember – just one thing.
Now. Get a pad and some paper.
Put the name of the ‘thing’ at the top of the page. It’s now lost its power, its mystery and its hold over you.
Note down all the words that come into your head when you look at this ‘thing’ and its connection with the Perfectpreneur. Just do a stream of consciousness doodle.
After five minutes stop. Any more and you won’t be streaming, you’ll be searching for things to write rather than writing your first impressions.
Now. Get some pretty coloured pens or pencils.
Strike out anything that is impossible for you to attain (like background, their thirty years of experience, their inherited hideaway in the Bahamas … the really, really impossible stuff).
Now, look at any words that relate to emotions and circle them.
Next, look at any words that relate to the nitty gritty of their business and circle them in a different colour. Not the popularity contest type words, but the ones that get them popular.
Then circle in another colour any words that are left that jump out at you and seem important.
You’re now not looking at this business god or goddess, you’re looking at how they make you feel and what they embody that’s important to you.
The ‘emotion’ words are how this Perfectpreneur makes you feel, so you can be damn sure that’s how they’ve made others feel. Are there any words in common? Are the words positive or negative?
List them all – if they’re mostly negative you now know how NOT to do things with your business (we all want our peers and customers to feel good don’t we?). Mind you, if this is someone you admire you shouldn’t have many negatives. If the emotions are mostly positive, then this is what you want to focus on.
Now list the business words. Are any of these similar? If these words have popped out of your head they have meaning. Just like the emotions, the business words might be positive or negative and can help you steer your way. Don’t do the bad things this person does obviously, but concentrate on the good business vibes.
Again, list the important words.
Now listing these things means that by picking them all out of the brainstorm they become more streamlined, they’re reinforced and you can concentrate on them in a more orderly fashion. You’re creating simplicity and purpose out of the insecurities you have and the admiration based around this person and putting it all down on paper.
Finally take a good long look at your list and take another pen.
The emotions list will show you what to concentrate on to be more like the Perfectpreneur. Note down how you can bring the same emotions to your business.
The business list is the best bit. You should now have a list of what you aspire to. Now it’s time to figure out how to attain these things. Some will be fairly easy … if they have a fabulous photo on their social media that attracts the eye, figure out how you can get one too (hint: a selfie from a night out is rarely a good idea). If they’re great at talks, how can you achieve this? Perhaps take some public speaking lessons, get out more and get experience, or find a mentor. Perhaps you already have some of these attributes?
The list of important things gives hints as to what you might look for in business. Have a look through them and see what’s what. If Mr Perfect is knowledgeable in certain areas it shows they’ve worked hard to attain that knowledge. What can you do to gain it? If they make things look easy, how do they do it?
It’s just a silly little game that will take ten minutes, but by the end of it you’ll see the Perfectpreneur is nothing more than someone who’s done things you can do. You just need to take away the glow of stardust around their public persona and see the coal dust at their heart. Coal is carbon and so are diamonds. You’ve just got to figure to how to do a little magic.