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Friends, we see it all the time. The social media world is full of people that either flaunt their success or fake their success (doesn’t it get on your nerves?).
And all of that influence on us can keep us in a constant state of either awe and envy, or frustration and anger, of what someone else has or we see the so called business that they built and the so-called lifestyle they have.
And then they go and talk about their $20K course that they offer for how YOU TOO can be successful and that they’re generously offering it for only $10K for a limited time.
Now, these courses may or may not help you with launching or growing your business, but I’m here to tell you that the path you think you may need to take to get to the ‘land of whatever you want’, might be different (and easier) than you think.
If you plan and launch your online business properly, you could have multiple income streams from a few different angles that would help you to not only grow, but scale your business.
But how do you get ‘there’ from here? And…where is ‘there’?
Don’t you need to spend the price of a small car to learn how to do that by taking some Internet Guru’s course? Well, no.
But you will need a plan. You will need to work out a lot of details in advance, before you go live with the plan.
Without a plan to have a Website created, and then content added that says…what? And then you get on social media, to say…what? Point them to... the website? That says what? ‘Buy my stuff’?
A key component to the plan is to have goals. Good goals.
Good goals have the following ten characteristics:
1. Good goals are describable.
There is nothing nebulous or vague about a good goal. A good goal isn’t some fairy-tale castle up on a hill. Good goals are not warm feelings, hot hunches, or trusting your gut. These are all fine and wonderful things, and they can inspire goals, but they are NOT goals. A good goal is concrete, explainable in simple to understand words.
2. Good goals are positive.
When you set goals, only set positive goals — things you want to do, not things you want to avoid. With goals, it’s the concept of running toward something, not running away from something.
If you’re a writer, “Don’t write garbage” is a bad goal. “Write my best work every time” is the same goal phrased in a way that will help you reach it; it’s positive and encouraging.
3. Good goals excite you.
When you’re excited about a goal, you’ll be thinking about it a lot. It’s something that you won’t be able to forget and won’t want to forget. It’ll be something you won’t be ashamed of and will light your face up when you talk about it.
Good goals will take you down the path from the person you are to the person you want to become.
4. Good goals belong exclusively to you.
This is related to #1, but not the same. Your goals have to be your own. So if your mother always dreamed of having a doctor in the family (she named us specifically with that in mind), and your father can see you as an architect, while you faint at the sight of blood and couldn’t care less whether a house is made of adobe or brick so long as it keeps the rain out, it’s time to set those dreams aside and focus on what excites you. Look, life is short, but it’s the longest thing we ever do. You can’t spend it trying to fulfill other people’s dreams. Not even the people who love you most.
Just because they want the best for you, doesn’t mean that they know what that is. Dream your own dream and own it.
5. You can achieve good goals by your own actions.
Deciding to have a book on the NY Times best seller list is a bad goal. Nice dream, really nice if they become reality.
But a bad goal. Why?
Because you have very little control of what The NY Times will do with your book and there’s nothing you can do to make them put you on their list. You can write brilliant book and sell thousands. Editors and publishers can love them but whether or not the New York Times decides to notice you is something you can’t control.
Goals dependent entirely on the actions of others are bad goals.
6. You can lay out the path to a good goal.
Writing that book may or may not be a good goal for you.
If you can look at it and say, “Okay, first I’ll figure out the big problem I’m trying to solve and if there’s a need for it. Then do a timeline, and create an outline and write a thousand words a day on the first draft …” then writing that book is a good goal for you.
If you just say, “My goal is to write a book,” but you see writing a book as a single event, then writing a book is likely to be a disaster for you.
7. You reach good goals regularly.
You’re on the right track if, when you break down your big goal into smaller goals, you actually accomplish the smaller goals. If you’re out to earn $5K a month in your business but only bringing in $500 a month, you might want to rethink the goal. There’s nothing like the forced failure of impossible goals to make you want to flush your dreams down the toilet and walk away forever.
You’re going to hit good goals if they’re in small increments. And when you hit them, you’ll be motivated to keep going forward every day.
8. Good goals leave you hungry.
Hunger is what got you into this in the first place, of course. Now, I know how hungry you are for those Cuban sandwich flavored potato chips, but I’m not talking about that. Hunger to do more than you’re already doing, to be more than you were yesterday, to build a business and make an impact in the world.
Good goals are going to feed that hunger. Write goals for yourself that send a little chill down your spine. Pretend you’re a little kid, and the world is brand new and everything is possible. Then look at all the endless possibilities, and identify the ones that give you goosebumps.
Pick those. Tell yourself ‘I want to do that.’
9. Good goals withstand repeated kicking.
A little bad news here about the push back you’ll get with your goals. The world is not friendly toward dreamers. It invades and injects a good dose of reality into the dreamspace.
People, much as they like success stories, also like disaster movies, and more than a few will be happy to try to jump in and kill your dreams and goals. Your goals are going to have to be strong enough to last through the tough times.
But beyond the push back you’ll get from people, you’re also going to hit low points, bad markets, and plenty of other things that can really hurt you.
Now, I’ve said this before, but failure is not the opposite of success, it’s part of success — it tells you you’re still daring to take chances. But failure and rejection hurt. Good goals will help you fall back and regroup, focus past the obstacles and give you something to shoot for even when times are hard.
Now the good news. If you’ve chosen the right goals, your response to repeated attacks, obstacles, and crashes will be something along the lines of ‘Don’t think I can do it? Just watch me.’ Remember, these are your goals. They’re worth hanging onto.
10. Good goals make you happy.
Most days you should be rolling out of bed ready to go, excited about what you’re going to be working on. Or if you working your J.O.B. then excited to hit the computer when you get home to work on building your new business.
If your first thought about your work or your goals is, “Oh, God, again?” you’re doing the wrong thing, or doing the right thing the wrong way.
It’s like having an important phone number but dialing the right digits out of order. It just won’t work.
When I coach people with “The Plan”, we start at the end, first, when talking about goals, and then work our way backwards. What do I mean by that? Well, here’s a few questions that I like to ask that gets the conversation pointing backward.
1. What do you want your life to be like 10 years from now?
2. What kinds of income do you want to have?
3. How much free time do you want?
4. Would you want to sell the business someday?
These questions (and others) will help us to shape the plan together, but will also help you, the business owner, to make the decisions necessary to launch your new business with a specific end game in mind.
So let’s take these questions one by one and dig deeper into these issues to help you have more clarity on ‘how to get there from here?’
Question 1: What do you want your life to be like 10 years from now?
You see, the answer to this question will reveal the direction you should take with your business. It’s sort of like setting your life compass, so to speak. And since ‘success’ is very different for everyone, I’m not asking about income levels with this question, I’m asking about lifestyle. But keep it real in the answer. Give me an answer that’s in the realm of serious goal stretching but doable.
I have my answer for this one and it’s quite possible that you have that one already done as well. Usually, we already know what we want our lives to be like, but for some, that have struggled with their dream and are just beginning to believe that greater things are possible, they may want to spend some time thinking about this one.
I wasn’t raised to be a dreamer, or have a vision for the future. I had to learn how to use those mental muscles much later in life.
Question 2: What kinds of income do you want to have? Active, passive. 1:1 or 1: many?
Usually, when I ask this question, I hear a strong interest in receiving passive income. I’ve received thousands of dollars in passive income and it’s still coming in. I can’t imagine not having that as an income stream source. I’m talking to a local guy now about his business re-launch after his relocation to Virginia that said “Passive income? Now you have my attention”. All 4 of these types are my favorites.
You see, some people got the income they wanted, but not the lifestyle. And others may have received the reverse; the lifestyle but not the income.
If we work together, our goal should be to achieve both. I know that the structure of a more ‘lifestyle business’ is very different than one that has specific income driven goals that turns your lifestyle into the ‘whatever it takes’ perspective for earning what you want to earn.
I know what I want my life to be like and I’ve got it written down, I’ve told people about it (which helps to make it more real) and it’s in the back of my head always motivating me forward.
Why do I press on each day? Because I know what the goal is.
But if I said I wanted to be a gazzilionair, I wouldn’t be realistic in what’s obtainable and therefore, it wouldn’t be a good motivator for me to pursue that goal.
Question 3: How much free time do you want?
Again, the answer to this question will help us to form the plan that works well for you and how much time you’ll spend on this business each day. Invest in the time now to have the free time later on.
How? Well in the startup and ramp up phases (we can go over the different phases some other time) you’ll be building the business in a way that will set you up for more passive income later on. The more passive income you have, the less active income you’ll need to maintain your lifestyle.
Now, let’s start to work backwards and ask some other questions.
Looking at your lifestyle and income goals 10 years from now, what would those same goals look like when we incrementally dial the timeline back to 5 years? Then 2 years? Then 1 year?
Putting your goals on a timeline helps to both match the decisions being made with the timeline and to also monitor the outcome. Has the outcome been different than the intended goals? Why? Are you on track for focusing on the things you need to focus on and the market is just not responding? Or have you been distracted by other things and you’re not doing what you need to do to build this business up and out?
What do you need to do to meet the one year goals? Once you have the answer for that, let’s dial that one year timeline back into 12 increments and see what those goals look like as well.
When you lay it all out this way, you’ll start to see how reachable these goals are and that you really can turn your dream into a reality.
So friends, I hope you can see now, that if you’ve been doubting yourself, or unsure of this dream that you have in the back of your head and you’re wondering if it’s really possible, that with good goals and a good plan, a lot of things are possible.
So take some time to be alone in a quiet place if you need it and think about your dream. Think about making a list of some good goals. And let’s talk about them. Let’s talk about how we can get you ‘there’ from ‘here’.
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