You've done incredibly well to get to this point, and now is the time to reflect on how you want to move forward from here. When you're first starting out in business, it's tempting and even helpful to say "yes" to anything that comes along. After a while, though, you may find yourself questioning: Is this really what you wanted? Are you using your skills in the best way? Are you enjoying all this work? Are you feeling challenged and fulfilled? Now that you have more experience, you can start to reflect on what would make you excited to get out of bed in the morning - and start taking steps towards making it happen.
Here's what you'll need to get to where you want to be:
1. A clear definition of success
The first step is to get crystal clear on what really matters in your life, from a 'big picture' perspective where you consider all different areas of your life and not just work. It's important to get clear on WHAT it is you want to do and WHY before you get caught up in the HOW. Make sure you also don't succumb to black-and-white thinking and give up before you've even started because your vision just seems so far off - there are lots of scenarios that lie between that big ideal vision and where you are today.
2. A re-framing of your beliefs
You may already be clear on what you'd like to do but you're holding yourself back with a set of assumptions about what is and isn't possible. "I can't charge more because I'm in this particular industry." "I have to agree to any work that comes my way." "This is the way things are done." Questioning these assumptions will help you to think differently and be open to a different way of doing things. You can then look at different business models, ways to diversify your income stream or to take on a new challenge that you didn't think was feasible.
3. Commitment to playing the long game
Once you've survived the first years of business, you've already side-stepped the biggest pitfalls that can lead to failure and you're now making a good living from working for yourself. But, as Stephen Covey said, "It doesn't matter how fast you're going if you're heading in the wrong direction." As you take a step back and reassess what you want to be doing, you may feel like you're backtracking - but this is so that you can then take a leap forward in the right direction... and it will all be worth it in the long run.
"If you can dream it, you can do it."
- Walt Disney
In the meantime, I recommend getting started with these resources...
I've selected these specific podcast episodes to help you get started:
- Why redefine success? Listen on Apple podcasts >>
- 3 exercises to help you redefine success Listen on Apple podcasts >>
- Reimagining success: the 5Ls Listen on Apple podcasts >>
- 2020 vision: how to make this your best year in business yet Listen on Apple podcasts >>
- How to not lose sight of your 'big picture' vision Listen on Apple podcasts >>
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