I was chatting with a dear friend recently who runs her own biz here in Ibiza. She’s smart, creative, has plenty of ideas, full of entrepreneurial spirit, and dreams of being hugely successful.
My pal’s been working her tail off. It’s the summer season here and as Ibiza’s main commodity is tourism the islanders go into overdrive, literally making
hay dough while the sun shines.
My friend feels she can’t say NO when the work shows up. She thinks she has to take it. I hear this a lot among my islander friends, but also from my clients who don’t have seasonal businesses.
You know what it’s like to feel that you can’t say no, right?
- Because you never know how long the good fortune will last
- Gotta make the most of every opportunity when it comes knockin’
- Gotta keep up with everyone else or your competitors will win and you’ll lose out
I’m going to tell you what I told my friend: it’s RUBBISH, total BS! It’s not even a little bit true.
My now tail-less friend? She’s burnt out and stressed to the eyeballs. She needs time out before the season has even finished.
You know the saying “Jack of all trades, master of none”? This is what happens when you spread yourself too thinly, grabbing at any work which comes your way.
But is there enough?
This fear of not believing that there will be enough of the “good stuff” makes you take on projects and clients which don’t Ignite your passion. WORSE, they sap your time and energy so you can’t take advantage of the light you up, genius zone work which comes your way (and it will come your way).
I totally, absofuckinglutely, 100% believe that you don’t have to keep doing work that drags you down. You can create the business you dreamed of – I know because I’m living that dream and I want you to as well. That’s what lights ME up!
It’s time to start making the changes you need to create that business you love and get your excitement (and life) back. Whether your business is seasonal or not, what can you do when you feel like you’re saying YES to every opportunity because you’re scared to say NO?
1. Listen to your heart
When faced with the decision of accepting new business or a new client – are you sure you really want to say yes?
What are your reasons? Is it because it gives you goosebumps and a surge of excitement just thinking about it? Or is it because you’re worried that nothing else will show up and you’ll be living on tinned tuna for an entire month?
If in your heart you know it’s not right for you, try saying no and leaving room to take on something else that really excites you (because when you know where to look for it there’s always something else around the corner).
But, don’t ignore your head completely!
Of course, there are times when you have to be smart about these decisions..
For instance, if you can’t make the bills, it’s necessary to suck it up and do the work, and that’s ok. It’s not a failure, it doesn’t mean it’s forever – it does mean you’re doing what you and your biz needs in the short term.
But it’s NOT a long term solution otherwise you’re just a slave to the job, and that’s not why you’re in business.
We’re in business for the right reasons, because we love what we do. It excites us so much we almost can’t NOT do it – am I right?
2. Know what you want
Over time, you’ll know exactly what you love doing, plus the opportunities and people to avoid.
That means making a few mistakes, saying yes to the wrong things, and then kicking yourself afterwards (and that’s ok too, but don’t kick yourself too hard – just enough so that you don’t make the same mistake again).
Over time, you build the confidence to say no to the things you don’t want to do and yes to those that you will totally love doing.
And in doing this you are providing a better service to those clients you turn down (politely, of course!) because they get to work with someone who is a better match. Win win.
3. Put systems in place
TOB (Terms of Business). This little sucker lays it all out right from the get go.
Working hours, response times, ways to communicate. This is your chance to set some client and you-friendly boundaries so there aren’t any nasty misunderstandings. Get a template set up and send it to ALL new clients, even if you know them well. It could protect both sides in the end.
Stricter work schedules. I’ve talked about setting boundaries in your business before and it’s SO important I’ll tell you all over again if I have to!
Clients will respect you for this, they will still work with you (and if they don’t, they would have been a nightmare, trust me you’re better off). Plus you can bring your best self to everything you do because that’s all you’re doing in that block of time.
Outsource. You can’t do it all by yourself for ever!
If it’s something easy to hand over, do it – it may be in the beginning that you use a niece/ nephew / neighbour/ friendly cat for a few weeks in the summer, that’s great. It’s not just time you’re freeing up, it’s head space as well. This means you can concentrate on what you do best.
4. Take time for yourself
Because if you don’t look after you, you can’t do your best for anyone else. Cliched? Sure, but for good reason!
I’ve been there, I’ve worked all hours and I’m here to tell you, girlfriend, it’s not healthy, it’s not productive and it’s totally not necessary.
I say; take back control and create the business you’ve always wanted
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How about you? Have you drifted from the dream of your business?
If you have, and you’re struggling with making your business one that you LOVE, book yourself a Clear Strategy session with me here. We’ll unravel what’s going on in your biz and create a business you love, that lets you get your life back.
Check out this blog on setting boundaries in your biz: “Why open all hours is killing your biz”
Have a little read of this bad boy if you want to make sure it’s YOU calling the shots in your biz “Who’s calling the shots in your biz?”
And finally cast your eye over this gem to see how to communicate with your ideal clients FAST. “My first time (and why you should pop your Periscope cherry too)”