When's Your Independence Day? PDF Print E-mail
Written by Bernadette Doyle   
Friday, 04 July 2008 00:00
Bernadette Doyle
Bernadette Doyle

Chances are you started your business to enjoy more autonomy and freedom in your business. So, in the words of Dr Phil, 'How's that working for ya?'

After the honeymoon delight of 'being your own boss' passes by, most business owners realise that far from enjoying the freedom and independence they craved, they are actually working longer hours than they did as an employee, and more often than not, after all the costs of running a business are taking into account, for a lower hourly rate. You may no longer have a boss to answer to, but instead there are a series of other constant demands on your time and attention. You are the sales department, the marketing department, the IT department, production, operations, finance....everything is dependent upon YOU. Nothing happens in your business unless it's driven by you. The excitement of 'Going it alone' has been replaced by loneliness, stress and overwhelm. This is NOT independence.

You may want more clients, but you don't know how to attract them with your limited resources. You want to increase your income, but you are afraid of raising your prices in case you alienate the few clients that you DO have. You may want to grow your business, but don't want the hassle of hiring and managing employees. You may be attracted to the idea of 'passive income' but wondering where you would find the time to create and market products when you already have so much to handle. So you stay stuck, in a situation that is far from perfect, and certainly not what you dreamed of when you started on this path. This is NOT independence.

According to Robert Kiyosaki, author of Rich Dad, Poor Dad, the true test of whether you actually own a business is whether you can leave it for a year or more and return to find it running more profitably than when you left it. If that's not the case, then you don't have a business, you have a job. Yet many of the coaches, consultants, therapists and trainers I meet tell me they can't even contemplate leaving their business for a DAY, let alone a week or a month. They are too afraid of missing the vital phone call or email. That the whole house of cards would come tumbling down in their absence. This is NOT independence.

The trouble is, so many people accept this as 'the way things are', that they can't even conceive that things could be different. It DOESN'T have to be this way.

You CAN create a business around your preferred lifestyle, you CAN do business on your own terms. You CAN work when you want, with whom you want, where you want. You CAN find alternative methods of selling your expertise that aren't dependent on your time. You CAN set up multiple streams of income that combined generate far more than you ever could have earned on your own. You CAN set up systems that do the 'heavy lifting' for you, so that the wheels of your business keep turning whether you are there or not. I know you can do this, because I've done it. Not so long ago I was the lonely, stressed and overwhelmed business owner I described above. However things look at the moment, this is possible for you too.

How? I hear you ask.

First, accept that it WON'T happen by accident. Many people think that if they keep working hard then eventually they will reach a place where things are magically better. It doesn't work that way. You need a vision and a plan. Start by envisioning how you would like your business to be. No compromises. Write down how many hours you want to work and the income you'd like to be earning - even if it seems impossible right now, this IS the first step. Get it all down in as much detail as you can. Your environment, the people you want work with, the clients you want to serve. It should excite you.

If it doesn't, chances are you are already editing your vision and settling for what you think you can get as opposed to what you really want. Seek out role models who inspire you. If they can do it, why can't you?

Next, you need a plan. To get where you want to go, there may be things you need to stop doing, and other things that you need to start doing. As you open your eyes to new possibilities for your business and life, you will start to see opportunities, resources and mentors that were previously invisible to you. I'm going to add a shameless plug for my 'Launch Your Information Empire' system here too, as it will help you break down the achievement of your vision into a series of steps, including all sorts of marketing secrets and short-cuts that you've never heard of before, and it's designed specifically for coaches, consultants, trainers and therapists. (I'm not saying you can't do this without the system, but I do know it will help you get there a lot faster.)

Finally, set up an environment that guarantees your success. Surround yourself with people who share your vision and can support you as you work towards it. Perhaps you need a coach or a Mastermind group. You may need to purposefully avoid the nay-sayers who are still stuck in the 'old way' of doing things that they can't get excited about what you are creating, or may even be threatened by your success. You may meet challenges on the road ahead, but it is a lot easier to handle the setbacks when you have like-minded people cheering you on.

But ultimately, it ALL starts with a decision. Start TODAY.

Next July 4th, the U.S will be celebrating Independence Day. You could be celebrating YOUR Independence Day on that day also. No matter where you are starting from, one year from now you could be experiencing business in a whole new way, making more than you ever dreamed possible and doing so in a way that is fun and enjoyable for you. Finally you could be enjoying the true independence that motivated you to start your business in the first place. Will you accept the challenge? Go for it!

©2008 Bernadette Doyle

Bernadette Doyle publishes her weekly Client Magnets newsletter for trainers, coaches, consultants, complementary therapists and solo professionals. If you want to get clients calling you instead of you calling them, then get your free tips now at www.clientmagnets.com

Last Updated on Saturday, 01 November 2008 13:56