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EP #44: How You’ve Been Setting Yourself Up For Business Failure (And What To Do Instead)

MMM 44 | Setting Yourself Up For Business Failure

You’ve heard that setting goals is the best way to set yourself up for success in business, but here’s something even the best business schools won’t teach you–if you aren’t happy with how your business is performing it’s not because you don’t have goals. It’s most likely because of your goals and how you’re unintentionally or unknowingly setting yourself up for business failure. Find out exactly what goals will lead you to frustration, anxiety and failure, and which will lead you to success, fulfillment and abundance.

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How You’ve Been Setting Yourself Up For Business Failure (And What To Do Instead)

I’m really diving in, picking up from the last few episodes about money. More so for those of you that are business owners, aspiring business owners, or just entrepreneurs in general and really understanding the greatest ways and the best goals to have that lead to success in your business and in your life. In this episode, we’re going to be diving deep into understanding how you can succeed as an entrepreneur in a way that’s not just successful, but also fulfilling.

This is the “why” of business. The reason that you do anything will determine the results you get out of it. Even if you’re making money hand over fist, your reasons and your goals will determine how happy you are throughout the whole process, how fulfilling it is and how it feels. It doesn’t make any point to make a lot of money if you don’t love it, if it’s not fun for you, and if you’re not doing something that means something to you. It’s fulfilment. Success without fulfilment is failure and that all comes from your goals. Why are you making money? Why do you want money? Why are you working to get money? What’s the point of it all for you?

This is a big one and it ties back into what we were just talking about in the last episode. When you’re really looking at the identity that you have around the money that you’re making, but more importantly the lifestyle that you’re living. It’s interesting because when you talk to a lot of entrepreneurs that start to get to these higher dollars, money just becomes a number. You go numbed to it at a certain point when you start making a certain amount of money consistently. Typically, when you’re making $500,000 to $1 million plus, money’s coming in and it’s going out. What these people start to look at, is the lifestyle that they’re able to have and the depth of relationship and meaning in their life in comparison to their business.

I’m sure a lot of you that are reading can probably relate, when you’re first starting out, you run your life around your business. Everything you do in your life is to support your business and you’re willing to sacrifice anything and everything to be able to get your business off the ground, to be able to get it to a certain place where it’s profitable. To a certain extent, it is necessary. There comes a point where you have to slow down and either life will make this happen or your body will. You start to realize that, “I can’t keep going the way I’m going.” You’re putting so much into your business that you don’t know who you are without your business or you don’t have a life outside of your business anymore. This is where things can become dangerous. What we want to just dive into it and share with you how you can have an incredibly successful and fulfilling business while also feeling successful and fulfilled in every other area of your life.

MMM 44 | Setting Yourself Up For Business Failure
Setting Yourself Up For Business Failure: There comes a point where you have to just slow down, and either life will make this happen or your body will.

Here’s the first key to it, is that we do things for feelings and identities. Everything you do is to feel something or to be someone. A lot of times I ask people, “Why are you in business? Why are you doing this?” They’ll say, “For the money.” Wrong. That’s not deep enough. The question is why do you want the money? What will that get you or make you feel? I’m going to say, “I want the money so I can buy a nice car and nice home.” “Why do you want that?” “So I can feel proud.” Then you do it for pride. Maybe you’re in business so you can make a lot of money so that you can have influence, you can feel successful, or be the kind of person that your kids want to look up to. We do things for identity, for money. That thing that people realize usually on their own later when they’re already making a lot of money is if you reverse the process and you find out why you want money in the first place and then help yourself feel that already, it’ll help you make even more money.

Studies show that when you feel happy and confident, when you feel that pride, when you become and feel like that person that your kids look up to, whatever it is that you’re looking for, when your feel that already, that your body, your brain, works in an even more efficient and effective way. Your memory improves, your cognition speeds up, your creativity flourishes. All of your mental and emotional resources come and kick in in high gear. When you feel these things, when you become this person already and that helps you make even more money. The very first goal that I think is great to start off with is the set of feelings and the identities. That way you can already make progress on feeling these things, you can already mark progress on being these people, these kinds of sides, and introducing these identities within you. That will help you make money even faster in a way that feels even better.

There are so many ways that we can take this right. You’re probably at the beginning stages of your business or you’re not really past that $25,000 a month mark. What I would love to do is give you guys some insight into what you can predict but also prevent. What’s really interesting is exactly what Dan’s talking about, getting clear on why you want to do what you want to do, why you want to make the money you want to make. Dan and I both speak to a lot of entrepreneurs where they come in and say, “I want to make a $1 million. I want to make $25,000 a month.” They have these big hefty goals and that’s really beautiful, but it’s getting clear on why do you want to make that kind of money? What do you believe having that type of income is going to allow you to do, be, or have? This is such a crucial point because oftentimes as human beings, we tend to overestimate what needs to happen in order to actually have the lifestyle that we want to have.

One of the exercises that I use for all of my clients is when we’re figuring out their financial goals, it’s having them actually structure out for themselves, where do you want to live? What’s the cost of that? What kind of things do you want to be doing on a day-to-day basis? How do you want to be spending your time and actually looking at the real numbers? It’s getting clear on what’s the monthly cost for you to be able to have the lifestyle that you want to have and be able to live the way you want to live. What’s crazy about this is that 80% to 90 % of the time, it’s a lot less than you think it is. You don’t actually need a million dollars a year in order to have this beautiful life. If you want to earn that, that’s totally fine. It’s just getting clear on why you want that and getting clear on making it something that’s very realistic and tangible for you.

It was interesting, Dan, I spent a lot of time up in Venice with Livy and Scott. For those of you that don’t know, these are both people that are very successful. They help high level entrepreneurs get to the next level. I’m sitting down with Scott the other day and we were talking about what’s it like being in that seven figure to eight figure earnings, One of the points that he brought up is the fact that you literally have to be a freaking psychopath to want to run a $1 million business because of the amount of energy and time and commitment that it takes, it is something where you have to be willing to go all in. It’s something where if you’re not clear on what you’re doing it for, what you’ll find is there’s a commonality there of people that have that million and billion-dollar earnings. Their main driving force tends to come from a place of enough-ness, of lovability, and of worthiness, where they feel like they need to continue to go and do in order to meet that need of feeling they are enough, a feeling that they are worthy of feeling like they are lovable.

If you really dive all the way down into it. It’s this never-ending game which is beautiful, but it’s insatiable. It’s like having this insatiable hunger that you can never stop because there’s always somewhere else to go and that there’s always more. One of the things that I would just love to give those of you tuning in insight into is getting really clear on what it is that you actually want and understanding that you can be incredibly successful, incredibly fulfilled, and having that incredibly wonderful life earning $100,000 to $200,000 a year.

What is success for you? Maybe we should start with that too, because that’s a feeling. What is the success feeling for you? For some people, success would be material things and in that case, I would be really careful. For other people, success may be having kids who never want for anything. They can provide any kind of life that they want for their kids, pay for their education, pay for everything. For some people, success is being able to travel around the world whenever. For some people it’s something different. It’s important to find out what success is for you like Sophie said. Maybe you don’t need to be a billionaire in order to really feel successful. Maybe you don’t need to have a lot of money at all. You can travel pretty cheap.

[bctt tweet=”You don’t actually need a million dollars a year in order to have a beautiful life.” via=”no”]

You don’t need to be a millionaire or in order to travel the world and spend a lot of time backpacking and spending your time in beautiful places when you know how to do it right. Tim Ferriss writes about it in The 4-Hour Workweek. He calls them the Nouveau Riche, the people who would take these mini retirements now and they don’t make a ton of money. They make enough so that they can do whatever they want to do that makes them feel happy and successful. It’s important to find out what do you want to feel, what do you want to be, and how much money do you really need for that. If you think that you’re doing things for money or for material possessions, then you’ll never have enough. It’s a real problem where you have people who earn millions of dollars, if not billions of dollars, and they still feel like it’s not enough. They’re trying fill a void, an emotional void with physical things because they don’t actually know why they’re making all that money.

If you don’t know why you want to make all that money, then you can’t address it. If you’re trying to make a lot of money for love, then you’ve got a seriously difficult life ahead of you. However, if you feel like you’re in that category and you do the work on yourself, that’ll allow you to feel self-love, to love other people, and accept love, then money will flood in. If you want to know why that works, just listen to the past episode about manifesting money and how that kicks in. Like Sophie said, get really clear on what you want to feel, who you want to be, and then how much money do you really need in order to live that lifestyle.

There are a couple things in here that go into play. For example, when I’m talking about who you want to be when you see yourself living your ideal life in, you can imagine yourself with material things around you. What’s even more important? How do you feel about yourself in that ideal situation? How do you make other people feel? What do you do in your free time? How do you interact with people? Do you have a family? What are your hobbies? Create this character for yourself so that it becomes really clear and you know that you did it right when you start getting really excited about it. That’s how you know you got an identity that really means something to you.

MMM 44 | Setting Yourself Up For Business Failure
Setting Yourself Up For Business Failure: Get really clear on what you want to feel, who you want to be, and how much money you need in order to live that lifestyle.

It’s been shown that having material things, even winning the lottery only impact your happiness and satisfaction in life for a very short amount of time and then you go right back down to what’s called a happiness set point. The only way to change that happiness set point is by changing your identity. There is no point in making a lot of money if your identity is the same or if you’re not the person who you really want to be. You’re just a miserable person with a lot of money to boot. You’re going to be upset inside of your mansion but why be upset inside of a huge mansion when you can feel like a fucking rock star in an apartment?

It’s really interesting because more recently I was working with another individual who had a million-dollar company. They built this company all the way up to $1 million. They had this beautiful home, this giant mansion, Ferrari, and everything they could ever want. Yet, they were lonelier, felt more isolated, and more disconnected than they ever had in their entire life. They realized that they had the belief that making all of that money is what they thought they needed in order to be enough and to be lovable. When they got there and they realized that nobody actually gave a shit about any of that stuff. They decided to let all of it go and step back, put more time into focusing on relationships, connection, and deepening those parts of their lives that they were really craving.

[bctt tweet=”Create for yourself a lifestyle that you can build your business around, not the other way.” via=”no”]

What’s insane about it is it’s amazing when you get clear on what it is that you really value, what it is that you really want, and what would make your life fulfilling. You use your definition of success in alignment to those values. You create for yourself a lifestyle that you can build your business around, not the other way. An exercise that I oftentimes use with my clients on this is similar to using that wheel of life. Where are you right now, and what is it you really want in all areas of your life? Let’s get really clear on that. What kind of relationships do you want to have? How do you want to feel with your significant other? What do you want to be able to do for fun? How’s your health? How are your finances? All of these things, and you start to get clear on, “This is what that actually looks like.” It becomes a lot more tangible and it becomes a lot more enjoyable because you can start to measure based off of what you really value. Instead of chasing something that is an elusive idea of what you think is going to bring you what it is you really want.

I’m bringing it down to brass tax. Money can’t make you feel anything straight up. It can’t. Anything that you think you felt as a direct result of money was a result of something else. Whatever money can “make you feel” is an illusion. That’s why it fades. Study show time after time, that people get excited and more confident, happier after they get a raise or an income bump for just a little bit of time, and then they go right back down. You have to do what Sophie was saying. That exercise is absolutely critical because those are the only things that matter. Money could be a vehicle to getting them, but that’s not why you’re doing things. You’re not doing things for money and it’s important to keep that in mind so that way you always steer yourself correctly. You don’t end up like Sophie’s client with a lot of money and misery.

If you’re ignoring what you really need and what you really want in life, and if you think that money will be the Band-Aid, you’re in for a hard road. Here’s another thing that really is important, and especially when you’re thinking about making a lot of money. How much are you contributing? How much are you really feeling like you are giving a part of? That you are playing a role in something that’s larger than you? What’s the point of making all that money if you’re doing it just for yourself? You can contribute to a partner, to a family, to an organization, to philanthropy, or to a government, but having that as part of your goal is critical.

We talked a little bit more about the Six Basic Human Needs. You really need to keep that into focus. That helps you stay satisfied. There are two needs that are really important when it comes to getting into growth, when you’re building a business that will continue to support your lifestyle no matter what you do with it. One, I actually just mentioned by accident is growth and contribution. Growth is also about you personally. How much will this business of yours allow you to grow as a person, as a businessperson, spiritually in your health and your relationships? How much does it feed you individually? How much do you use that growth to give back? When both of those are on the forefront of your goals, then you’ll have a business that will not only bring in a lot of money, but will feel amazing the whole way through.

[bctt tweet=”That certainty will bring so much peace and ease into your life when you realize, “This is why I’m doing it, this is what I really want.”” via=”no”]

I think the biggest thing that you’ll get if you apply just one of the things that we’ve talked about in this episode, is you’ll have clarity. This is a word that’s sometimes not really thought about correctly. Just in a sense of you’ll actually have certainty in what you’re doing and why you’re doing it, instead of just feeling like you’re doing it to do it. You’ll understand why you’re actually doing things and that certainty will bring so much peace and ease into your life when you realize, “This is why I’m doing it, this is what I really want. This is the thing, and it really is a beautiful place to be.”

When you can understand that, “I’m doing these things from a place of being right who I am, who I am in the world is what’s contributing to what I do in the world,” rather than doing all these things to try and be this person. That’s exactly what Dan’s talking about. It’s being able to create inside of yourself the identity, belief, and the feelings that I am this person, therefore, I do these things. In that way, you’re able to behave in that way and create for yourself that reality where you can experience that. I think Dan actually has a beautiful exercise for you guys, one more just to top it all off.

MMM 44 | Setting Yourself Up For Business Failure
Setting Yourself Up For Business Failure: Have certainty in what you’re doing and why you’re doing it.

Your exercise for this episode is, to use what I call the why chain to find out why are you making money? Why are you in business? You start off with, “I’m in business so I want to make a lot of money.” “Why?” You’ll say, “I want to make a lot of money so that I can have a lot of nice things and travel the world.” “Why?” “I want to live an exciting life.” You can stop there because excitement is a feeling or you can keep going. “Why do you want to live an exciting life?” “So that I can wake up every day feeling inspired by what is about to come.” That’s another feeling. You have two feelings in there already, you’re going to use the why chain until you go down and down until you find an emotion, a feeling, or you find an identity characteristic. Something like, so I can inspire others so that I can make a difference in my family or the environment.

Keep on asking why until you find out all the different feelings you want to feel, all the different characteristics you want to incorporate into your identity. Then start seeing as you do this exercise, how many different ways can you go ahead, and get yourself to feel and be those things now instead of waiting to be successful or even more successful to hopefully feel and be these things. Remember, it might not work. If you’re making money in order to feel good enough, chances are you’ll never feel good enough. No matter how much money you make, but when you get that feeling of I’m good enough, then money is sure to follow.

If you found that anything in this episode has really spoken to you and where you really want to go deeper, I would encourage you to take a minute right now, and sit down wherever you are. Do this exercise, really get into it now that you’ve had the insights and the inspiration, and hopefully some clarity around what it is you’re really doing. If you want to dive deeper into it, email it to me and Dan and we’d love to take the next steps with you. We want to see how we can empower you and connect with you on a deeper level so you can create by yourself a business and a life that’s not just successful, but fulfilling.

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I'm Sophie Kessner

First generation Mexican American mama that’s gone from hood to strategic hustle. I’ve spent the last 10+ years inside the personal development space supporting 100’s of coaches in scaling 6 figure businesses online & supported 4 different companies in surpassing the 7 figure mark. Today, I focus on making scaling more sustainable by integrating the lenses of business, systems, automation and CEO Development through an Equity centered and Trauma informed lens.

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Sophie is the founder of The Sacred CEO™ Agency and has been in the service based coaching industry since 2015. She’s created and scaled 4 different multi 6 figure coaching programs including their latest course, The Online Business Automator.

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