Sue, the very first coach I ever worked with asked me a question that changed the course of my business and my life. After listening to me talk about how much I was struggling financially and the problems I was having, she said something so profound to me.
This was it: Jennifer, you are more committed to your reasons why it won’t work than you are committed to being successful. You have to be more committed to being successful and let go of your excuses.
I was so angry at her. Clearly she didn’t understand what I was going through. Clearly she didn’t realize just how difficult it was for me.
I ended that first call with her convinced I had made a huge mistake. This woman didn’t understand me, how could she possibly help me grow my business?
I was already barely getting by, and to make it worse, I had just wasted all this money on someone who wasn’t going to help me.
When I woke up the next morning, and it happened. I hadn’t even gotten out of bed yet, and I was already running through all the excuses that would get me out of taking action: the baby hadn’t slept well, and I was exhausted; I really had to do something about the mound of laundry; Friday isn’t a good day to post on social media anyway.
I was once again justifying why I couldn’t take action. Justifying why it was so much harder for me, and that just wasn’t fair. Frustrated that it was so much easier for everyone else. And I hadn’t even gotten out of bed yet. It’s like I had those excuses all lined up in my subconscious just waiting for my eyes to open so they could flood in.
I started to cry. In that moment I saw it. I had been buying in to my excuses day after day, without even realizing it. I was giving myself permission to give up on my dream before I even had my first cup of coffee. I was so attached to my justifications and my excuses, that I couldn’t possibly reach my goals. Something had to change. I had to be willing to let go of all of those excuses.
I had been saying I wanted to be successful, but at the same time, hiding behind my excuses to justify not taking action.
Maybe, just maybe my new coach wasn’t as off the mark as I thought she was.
I had been doing what was convenient, if and when I felt like it. The moment it got uncomfortable or difficult, boom, I was right back in the land of excuses.
I could see so clearly how I would make some progress, and then get lost in my excuses, and pull myself right back to the starting point. I was like a yo-yo: lots of back and forth, but never really moving.
I made a terrifying decision: I was going to let go of my excuses and fully commit to being successful.
That one decision changed so much in my life. Less than 18 months later, I had a 6-figure business. That was over 10 years ago, and I’ve far surpassed my goals since then. I’ve created a business, and a lifestyle that is so much more than I could’ve imagined back then. I owe it all to that one decision that I was no longer going to allow my excuses to hold me back.
My goal at the time was to build a successful business. I’ve done that. I’ve built a business I’m really proud of, but this decision led to so much more for me. I started to show up as a different person. I started to see myself differently. I started to have confidence and believe in myself in a way that I never had before.
Everything changed when I made the decision to commit to my success. Here’s how you can do it too:
1. Write down the one goal you are committing to achieve. I really like starting with just one goal. This allows you to focus clearly on what you really want while you develop the skill of achieving your goals.
2. Ask yourself, “Am I TRULY committed to achieving this goal?” Wanting to reach the goal or hoping you’ll reach the goal isn’t enough. You’ve got to be firmly committed. You’ve got to want the goal enough to be willing to let go of your old excuses. If you’re not truly committed to this goal, that’s okay, just pick another one to start.
3. Spend 3–5 minutes imagining what life will be like when you’ve already reached your goal. Allow yourself to connect with the dream you have and really feel it on a deep emotional level.
4. Write down your WHY. A client of mine, Darlene, recently told me that the reason she wants to build a 6-figure business is so that she can pay for her grandchildren to go to college anywhere they want. This WHY is so strong for Darlene that it will call her forward through any rough spots and keep her on track for her goal. You need to know your compelling why as well, so you can make it through the rough spots you encounter.
5. Make list of the skills you’ll need to reach your goal. The skills you currently have got you to exactly where you are right now. In order to embark forward toward your goal, you’ll need to do develop new skills and capabilities.
6. Make a list of the beliefs you’ll need to reach your goal. As my business has grown, the thing that has changed the most for me is my beliefs. I’ve discovered that I set a goal, and then grow into that goal through my beliefs and habits. It’s the same for you. What are the beliefs you’ll need to grow into your goal?
7. Make a list of the baby steps you could take right now to move you closer to your goal. Okay, maybe you’re not ready to do a live video just yet, but you could definitely create an interesting post.
8. Take action!
To build your dream become, you have to become the type of person who can grow into your goals. You have to become the person who can commit to their success and release those excuses that have held you back in the past.
Then, you’ll be able to look at yourself and be amazed by what you’ve built and who you’ve become.