Are you an aspiring entrepreneur or just starting off in your first business?
Your first year in business for yourself is crucial because it’s so easy to get sidetracked or give up.
Maybe you have an idea of what you want, but you just can’t seem to get there. Or you have tons of ideas and just want to make them work!
Don’t worry, most of us entrepreneurs face this problem whether just starting off or years deep into their business.
The problem is we have so many ideas and problems we want to solve… which is the easy part.
The hard part is implementing those ideas to create a thriving business.
That’s why you need the key ingredient to starting off: laser focus.
I’m talking so focused, if you took off your sunglasses you have a shooting out of your eyes, like Cyclops from X-Men.
Why it’s so important to keep focused
Too many times I’ve heard someone come up with 10 different ideas and want to do them all. I’m guilty of this my self.
But what if you focused on just one great idea that you’re truly passionate about first… and then start other business ideas down the road instead?
It’s the same concept as if you started a new job.
Let’s say you just got a new outside sales gig. Well after two weeks of working on the job you would you switch to being a sales manager? What about then moving over to the customer service side after the next two weeks?
Of course not, that would be crazy!
They are entirely different roles that require time to learn and get productive.
You need to do the same with your business. Figure out what you truly want to do and stick with it. Even if you fail or it takes much longer than expected, keep going.
Apple, Microsoft, McDonalds, and every other big company went through plenty of struggles when first starting off. So should you.
But how do we stay laser focused on our first business? Especially when things breakdown, struggles come up, and ideas get unclear.
Here’s a list of what helps me keep FOCUSED…
Write it down – Every damn day
I remember it was until I wrote down, “I am a online marketing consultant” before actually becoming an online marketing consultant.
Before I would doubt myself, change plans, and try other types of businesses. And trust me, it’s easy to do so with online business.
There are a million and one ways to make money on the Internet, and if you’re not keeping focused then you’re going to get sidetracked – which will get you nowhere!
The same goes for any type of business.
So write it down every morning you wake up and every night before bed.
I even went as far as writing down exactly how much I dream to make per month.
I got this idea from Think and Grow Rich, by Napolean Hill. (A must read for entrepreneurs!)
He recommends writing down exactly the income you want to make, how you’re going to do so, and reading it aloud every morning and night with CONFIDENCE. This way you’re DEMANDING that money.
Don’t do it alone – Network
Entrepreneurship is a lonely journey.
That’s because you’re venturing out to solve problems in the market and you’re the leader.
But there’s no reason to do it alone.
Try going to meetup.com and find some networking events nearby your city. Here in Denver, there’s plenty of them and I try going to one at least a couple of times a month.
This way you find other entrepreneurs (or even potential clients!) who will support you.
If possible, network with people in your industry and offer to help. You can learn the trade this way.
For example, I prefer working with other people who do SEO, while I can focus on client relationships or web development.
Have some accountability – the mastermind
This is by far one of the most helpful ways to keep focused on your new business.
Find a group of people in your area that you can meet up once a week and talk about your business.
Another great way to mastermind is join online forums, find a group of dedicated entrepreneurs, and meet up on Google Hangouts.
It’s a good idea to have a common goal as well.
For example, for the past few months I meet up with a mastermind of 6 entrepreneurs who goal is to make their income solely online and travel the world.
We meet once a week and keep each other in check. If someone is having doubts, we cheer them up and offer solutions. If someone wants to change their idea, we motivate them to stay on track instead. If someone loses focus of the goal, we get focused again.
A mastermind will help keep you accountable of your actions and remind you why you need to keep going!
Trial and Error – keep going!
You’re going to fail.
And then you’re going to fail again.
What makes the difference between a successful business and one that doesn’t make it is the successful business just lasted longer.
Every business will fail. Every business will make mistakes. All you can do is keep going and figure out how to fix these mistakes or do it right the next time.
Don’t stop. If you need to take a break, take a break. But get back on the saddle and keep focused on your goal.
If working for your self were easy, then everyone would be doing it!
The process of entrepreneurship simply weeds out the people who can make and the ones that can’t.
Remember the What – Change the How
One important aspect in starting your first business is focusing on the WHAT– what you want to accomplish and WHY you want to accomplish it.
For me it’s working online, traveling, and helping other business owners become successful.
For you it might be making the world a better place through a non-profit organization and helping kids in third world countries.
Whatever your WHAT is, remind yourself every day.
The HOW is entirely different. It’s how you go about WHAT you want to do.
So maybe you want to help kids in third world countries by starting a non-profit organization, but it doesn’t work out. Well try another approach if you fail.
Keep focused on the WHAT you want to do, rather than HOW you want to do it. The HOW will continuously change.
You need to be agile, on your toes, to keep up with changes in your business.
Fall in love with the boredom
What do you think stands an Olympic athlete from a normal athlete?
Yes, that helps.
Olympic athletes show up to the gym for practice every single day. They aren’t pumped up with motivation. They just show up.
They fall in love with the boredom and keep their eyes on the prize – the gold.
Go to the gym because you want to do it every day.
Start your business because you want to make it happen every day.
If you’re starting a coffee shop, you better love coffee because you’re going to smell it all day, every day.
So fall in love with the routine of working on your business and moving forward with one small step a day.
Do like Cyclops does.
Keep laser focused on your goal. Don’t stop.
What are some tricks you do to keep focused on your goals?