Healthy Habits of Successful Entrepreneurs

Hey guys. Welcome back to another week of the girl Means Business podcast. We are on our second week of the new year and I hope it's going really well for you. So far you're probably getting back into the swing of things after the crazy holidays. I know for me it was two weeks of just relaxing with my family and friends and now it's time to hit the ground running. So this month we are focusing on a series called healthy habits. One of the things I wanted to do moving forward with this podcast was focus more on episodes series so groups of episodes that focus on one specific topic and then break that topic down into smaller pieces or parts of the larger topic.


So for January I thought it was fitting that we would talk about healthy habits. This could mean personally or professionally. So last week on the podcast we talked about creating smart goals creating goals within your business that you are going to achieve in this new year which is obviously a really great healthy habit to have in your business throughout the entire year not just in January. Today we're going to be looking at 7 healthy habits of successful entrepreneurs. So these are seven things that entrepreneurs do that help them and their businesses become successful.


Now some of these things are going to be business related but there are a few that have some crossover into our personal lives because I fully believe that you don't separate your business from your personal life completely especially as an entrepreneur. Our business and our personal lives are completely intermingled. We are constantly crossing those lines back and forth so it makes sense that when you are talking about healthy habits the some of the habits you have in your personal life are going to cross over into your business life and vice versa. All right guys so I'm not going to keep you waiting very long.


I want to dive right into our seven healthy habits of successful entrepreneurs. So we'll start with number seven. Number seven is a phrase that I heard a while ago and I can't remember for the life me where I heard it but I think I've said it on this podcast before and that is you need to focus on only doing the things that only you can do in your business. So let me break down a little bit of what that means and I must say it again to kind of give you a little bit slower listen to it because it takes a second to let it sink in focus on only doing the things that only you can do in your business.


This kind of pertains to personal life as well. But we're going to focus on the business side for this one. I heard this and it really resonated with me because I know for me especially in a lot of you listening you feel the same way you're wearing a lot of different hats in your business. You know you're not just the creator you're not just the artist you're not just the owner you're also an accountant and a lawyer and all the things that have to go into your business you're doing everything you're a marketing person a PR person a social media manager a client manager.


And this is in all those jobs rolled into one. And sometimes it can start to feel really overwhelming. And so one of the habits I've noticed that a lot of successful entrepreneurs have is that they delegate tasks. You know I've said in an episode before I don't like the word outsourcing to me the word outsource sounds like I'm sending my job in my company I may work to a third world country. And while I know that's not what that means is necessarily to me outsourcing just has sort of this negative connotation when I hear someone talk about it.


So I like the word delegate or creating a team you know one of the visions I have for my business is that I don't want it to be a one man show forever. I want to create a team I want to create a brand of people who are all working together collectively pulling in their strengths and bringing in the things that they're really good at to bring to life this vision that I have. And so for me that means that I'm looking into how can I take the skills that only I can do and how can I delegate the rest.


So for example in my photography business I'm the only one who can do the shooting in my opinion. Now I know there are photographers out there who have associate photographers but for my brand and what I do with my boudoir and my weddings I want to be the person that they are working with closely camera in hand. But there are things within my business that I am not the only person who can do those jobs. One being editing I've never been a huge fan of editing. It's not where my strength lies.


I am creative behind the camera with the vision and the design and all the things that go into creating a beautiful image. And when it comes to editing to those images I will delegate that to somebody else because I know that while I can be the one behind the camera someone else can be the one perfecting those images for me. Now obviously that takes time of finding the right person in the right style. Right fit. But to me it's worth that investment to know that I'm able to spend more time doing the things that are only things I can do in this podcast.


I learned this lesson recently when I hired a V.A. so I realized very quickly that there is a lot that goes into creating a podcast every single week. You know beyond just recording these episodes you have to make a show notes page create a transcript create graphics post on social media like the list goes on and so in order to get all that done. I felt like I was spinning my wheels and in some of those areas I don't feel like that that's my 100 percent strength. So when it comes to my podcast The thing that only I can do is record the episodes for you.


All the other behind the scenes things someone else who's really good at this who is better writing copy for emails and social media content who's a really great graphic designer someone who knows how to take a show notes page and really make it shine. That's their strength and I'm going to let them run with it. And one of the struggles that I had when it came to delegating things in my business was letting go of control. How can I expect somebody else to care about my business as much as I do. How can I expect somebody else to do as good of a job as I do or to present the vision that I see in my head and what I had to realize is that while it may not always be exactly the way I would have done it sometimes it's going to be better because somebody else can look at something from a really objective point of view a disconnected point of view to some degree and they can see it from a perspective that you can't always see when it's when it's yours.


And so being able to delegate some of these tasks to other people has been a huge lifesaver. And I know that a lot of the really successful entrepreneurs out there they have teams of people they have built around them whether it's three people 30 people or three hundred people that are doing things daily to move their business forward. You are only one person and there's only so much you can do as just one person. When you bring in other people onto your team that you value and you trust and you give a little bit of control over to then you're gonna start to see a huge improvement in your business and you're gonna see that that needle moving in the right direction.


Okay. So that was number seven focus on doing only the things that only you can do. So number six is invest in yourself. This is something a lot of entrepreneurs don't always do. Early on in their business they put a lot of money into things like Web sites marketing equipment products all the things that are good for a business but sometimes you need to invest in yourself and investing in yourself might mean investing in your education investing and learning something new about your industry or keeping up to date with the latest trends in your industry.


It also might mean and investing in yourself to allow yourself to take breaks. Maybe it's to read a really good book and maybe that book is a marketing book or a business book or maybe it's just a romance novel or a mystery novel to get your mind off of things. It also means taking time to step away from your business. Now when I say that I don't mean step away for a month at a time but disconnect for a weekend a week a couple of days to go on vacation with your family or just to hide out in your house and do nothing because that time in investing in yourself will come back tenfold because if you are burned out if you are tired if you are not giving 100 percent to your business your business is going to suffer because of it.


So when you take time to invest in yourself to step away for a few minutes to give yourself a break allow yourself some rest and focus on learning something new. Focus on educating yourself on the latest trends or the latest marketing strategies or the latest social media platform whatever applies to your business. Either way you're going to come back refreshed invigorated excited about your job again and when that happens great things are going to happen in your business. I follow a lot of successful entrepreneurs and one of the things I've started noticing on their social media feeds and in their email accounts is they talk a lot about rest and recharge and resetting themselves.


They're not afraid to step away for a minute to take care of themselves to mentally rest and refresh and come back ready to hit the ground running. Now this kind of ties into Number 7 which was to delegate because when you are running your business by yourself as a one man show you stop running and your business stops running and that's exhausting but when you have a team of people that are in place to help keep your business moving forward or when you have systems in place to keep your business moving forward so that you can take a couple days off.


You can take an afternoon. You can spend a vacation with your family and knowing that your business hasn't stopping because you're stopping. That is when you know you've hit the point where your business is going to take off. If you're constantly spinning on the hamster wheel and you feel like the second you stop or get off your business stops as well. It's time to start looking at what are some things you can do to put in place in your business so that your business keeps spinning. Even if you step off the wheel for a few minutes now obviously you're an integral part of your business and you have to be there to help keep that wheel moving.


But you need to be able to step away for short periods of time Rest recharge and come back ready to get back on that wheel and keep running again. Okay. Number five is knowing when to pivot. And I can't help but say that word and think of the Friends episode where they're yelling pivot on the stairs but just move fast that. So you need to know when to pivot in your business. If you look at entrepreneurs who are super successful or you listen to interviews with them. A lot of them will tell you their business looked completely different when they first started than where it is now.


And I think it's really important to know that things are going to change. Things are going to ebb and flow. You have to kind of ride out the waves of your business and if you are too rigid on what you think your business should be or how it should look and you're not willing to bend and move and change and evolve as your business does then you're going to break and your business is going to fall apart. But if you're willing to open yourself up to whatever comes your way and say OK I this is the vision that I have.


But if something changes if something comes along if something knocks me off course and I have to redirect myself or I see a path that looks like I didn't even expect it to happen. But it's a really great opportunity. I'm going to be open to taking that opportunity. You never know what the future holds and if you are so stuck on a specific vision of what your business should be you're never going obtain that because you are blocking out opportunities left and right. So be open. Be willing to change. Be willing to grow as your business grows and meet the needs of what your clients one of what the people working on your team are saying are working and not working and look at the trends.


Look at the data. Look at all the things that are feeding into your business telling you which direction to go. So make sure you're open to anything and everything that comes your way. Now side note to that that doesn't mean that you need to take in everything that comes your way. Some things are going to come they're just going to be a distraction. You need to also build a know when to differentiate between the things that are opportunities and the things that are distractions and a lot of that comes from just learning over time from instinct or intuition and also having a support system around you that can help guide you when you have questions when you're not sure which direction to go.


Someone else that has been on your path or that is on your path currently might be able to say you know what. That's a really amazing opportunity. You should take it. Or to say you know what. That doesn't sound like something that's going to really make you happy or that doesn't sound like something that's really going to be in line with what your business stands for. So having that outside source it can be a really helpful tool to keep you on the right path because while you want to be able to grow and pivot and change with your business you also want to be smart and you want to make sure you're making choices that are the best for your business.


Okay. Number four. Number four is endurance. When I think about my business I think of it like running a long distance race. And in order to run a long distance race you have to have endurance so years and years ago I decided I was going to run a half marathon and at this point I have never been a real runner. I had run some five K's I had run a little bit on the treadmill at the gym a couple of miles here and there but I was not a long distance runner.


I never had dreams of doing marathons or half marathons but I had a friend that said Hey I'm gonna do this half marathon while you do it with me. And I remember the training process and the fact that like you had to get up every single day and run whether you wanted to whether you felt like it whether the weather was great or not you were outside running. You were doing something to get closer to that end goal and that's how I look at my business. That endurance is the ability to give up every single day and do something in your business.


I was recently interviewed for another podcast and the question that was asked was What is the word hustle mean to you. And in my opinion I don't love the word hustle. So I replaced it with endurance because to me hustle and endurance mean that you are doing something every day to move your business forward even on the days when you're exhausted or you're tired or you'd rather just lay on the couch and watch Netflix and eat popcorn. I get it.


I have those days too but I make myself get up and I go into my office and I close the door to have no distractions no TV no nothing and I get the work done and by the time I finished doing the work I feel so much better I feel accomplished and excited and like I've done something that day and so make a point every single day to do something that moves your business forward and a little side note here. I know that you keep hearing you say move your business forward things that move your business forward.


But I want to make sure I clarify this because I say this a lot. And it's because I see this a lot when I work with entrepreneurs. I see people telling me I'm putting in all this work I'm doing all of these things and nothing's happening. But when we really get down to the nitty gritty of what it is that they're doing it's things that are not really moving their business in the direction that they need to be going. So it's things like well I'm redoing my website and creating images or I'm I'm setting up styled shoots for this new venue that's opening or I'm watching YouTube videos on how to use this equipment or do this new editorial on this new makeup style or hairstyle.


And while those are all things that are really great and you need to need to add those into your business as well. If you're spending the majority of your time doing things that are not getting new clients then you need to readjust your focus and spend more time on the things that are bringing in clients. Because while that styled shoot that you're gonna go to and take gorgeous pictures that might be really amazing is it really going to bring in more clients while those YouTube videos you're watching on the latest make up tutorials are really great.


If you don't have clients to do them on then how does that benefit your business. So when I say make sure you're doing things that move your business forward you need to be focusing on the tasks that are going to get you more clients and then the more clients you have the more things you can try and the more creative you can get with the things that you do and spend your time on but don't spend all of your time on things that aren't going to get you clients. Don't spend your time on things that are not going to push your business in the direction you want it to go.


So that's what I mean when I say the things that move your business forward just make sure that you are keeping track of the things you're doing in your daily business because there's a lot of times that we get caught up in what I was working for for hours. But when you really look back at what you were doing three of those four hours were spent on Facebook or Instagram or YouTube videos or scrolling through a Web site somewhere mindlessly. And I had to do this exercise with the mentor one time where she literally had me track everything I did in my business for an entire week and she went through as she analyzed all the things that I said I was doing and probably 60 percent of them were tasks that were not moving my business forward.


And so if that's something you think what help you is to sit down look at what am I doing every single week for my business. Like really keep track of it. Don't just say why worked for three hours what did you do during those three hours. Did you spend 20 minutes on emails and then hop on Facebook for 20 minutes. Did you spend an hour scheduling social media posts and then two hours scrolling through Instagram. You know keep track of the things that you're doing to make sure the tasks that you're doing are really pushing your business in the right direction.


Ok sorry I went off on a little of a tangent there. So let's move on to number three because the next three we're going to talk about I think are some of the biggest habits and the best habits you can have in your business and your personal life. So number three is to get outside of your head. I know for me personally I am someone who is very much in my own head. I work about myself 90 percent of the time and I just sort of fester on things.


Now I was listening to an episode of armchair expert the other day and they were interviewing the actress Keri Russell and she talked about how she is the type of person that processes things by herself. So when she has a big audition or something exciting happening in her life or or nerve wracking or whatever the case might be something big she likes to just go to dinner by herself or go for a hike or go for a run something that's just alone and quiet so that she can process everything. And as I was listening to this I realized I was like oh wow like that's not how I process things at all like I am so the opposite of that.


Because anytime anything happens the first thing I think of is who can I call to talk about this. Who can I call that's going to let me just get it out because I need to just get it out for me as an entrepreneur a lot of what I do is by myself and to a lot of it is in me talking to myself in my head. And that's not always the best conversation to have. So getting outside of your head getting outside of your little bubble of your office or your workspace being around other people having a support system doing something that is going to give you that outlet is going to be a really great habit to have in your business.


So one example is this last year I started a business brunch. So once a month about 10 of us get together and we talk about business and we have topics we go over and we share all the good things that are happening in our business. Struggles that we're having and there have been some months where I didn't really want to go because I only have two days a week where my daughters are both in school and those days are really valuable that time is really valuable. And so to spend one of those days each month going to this brunch felt kind of frivolous.


But every time I went I left feeling so good I was refreshed I was excited I didn't feel like I was stuck in my own head anymore and I was always so appreciative of the fact that I had that group and that I was making the time to go and do something away from my laptop away from my own thoughts and ideas or even just to get those thoughts and ideas out there for somebody else to talk to me about. So having a support system finding that networking group having your business the effort that you can talk to those are all things that are really really great habits to have.


I also think it's good to say here that another way to really help get out of your head or maybe if you're the type that likes to process things on your own is to get out of your house.


Go for a walk take your dog out for a walk go to the park with your kids go to the museum go to the gym whatever it might be. Just walk away for a little bit. Clear your mind. Find something that's active to do they get your mind off of your work or lets you kind of work through the things in your head so that you're not just sitting here staring at your computer or going what am I doing. Because we've all been there. We've all done that at some point so healthy habit number three is to get out of your head create a support system do something active just make sure that all those ideas floating around your brain have somewhere to go so that they aren't just sitting there festering and driving you nuts all right.


Number two. Number two the healthy habit of successful entrepreneurs is knowing when to say no. Now I got this one from Rachel Hollis who is a big advocate on taking control of your own schedule and every year she does an audit of her calendar and she sits down she looks at all the things that she agreed to this past year all the events that she went to all the interviews that she did. The networking events or whatever it might be. And she looks back and she makes a decision of was that something that was beneficial.


Was it something I ever want to do again. And if not why. And she really is intentional about making sure that the things that she says yes to are a hell yes and if not then she says no and I'm really working to implement that in my business in my personal life as well especially my personal life because I am a people pleaser and I tend to say yes to things even when I'm exhausted even when it doesn't benefit me emotionally mentally physically whatever it might be. And so really making sure that you are saying yes to the things you want to say yes to and note the things that you're not.


So for example in your personal life it's really hard for me my personal life because I feel like this is saying no to people that I value and I care about. But I have a couple girlfriends who we make a point to try to see each other every couple of weeks to go to brunch your dinner happy hour coffee or whatever we can fit in between kids and schedules and school and husbands and whatnot. And this past month with it being the holidays we had a really hard time getting together. We were trying to squeeze it and trying to squeeze it in.


We finally packed like a weekday evening. I think it was the night before my daughters. Both my girls had their Christmas parties at school the next day. I was worn out because we'd done holiday stuff all week and trying to prep and get things ready for their school stuff and holiday shopping and just all of that stuff was just it was exhausting. And so we agreed we're gonna go and have a glass of wine and just have appetizers and catch up. And the day of I just do I was just worn out and I knew that as much fun as it would be to go see her and to spend time with her I mentally needed a break.


I needed to decompress I needed to be home. I needed to get things done. And it was just going to stress me out to have one more thing on my calendar to do. Even though it's something that I knew that I would enjoy doing so I called her and I said hey this is what's going on. I'm exhausted. I want to see you. I want to spend time on our friendship. I want to make sure that we are you know taking care of our relationship. But right now I need to take care of me and I need to rest and I need to get ready for this craziness it's going to be the next few days of our lives.


And she totally understood. She said you know what. I get it I'm tired too. We've got a million things going on. You know we were trying to force this get together. She's luscious weight after the first of the year and we'll do like a whole dinner date night thing and having that response just verified to me that saying no sometimes and protecting what my time is worth and what my energy is worth my friends will understand that the people who really care about me and value my relation my friendship and relationships with them will understand that and they're not going to be upset by it.


And there are definitely times when I say yes to things that I don't naturally want to do but it's going to support somebody that has supported me and I want to be there for them. But there's also times when I've said no to things and felt guilty when that person completely understood. So I think we need to be more honest with our relationships and just say like I'm really struggling right now and adding one more thing to my calendar is just not the healthy thing for me to do. And that's OK. Now in business saying no is again a little tricky.


It's a little in my opinion a little bit easier because it's usually working with somebody that I don't have that close relationship with right away. And so my go to for example if I have a bride or a photography client that reaches out to me and says you know we want to book this date or we're looking for this or this or this and I just don't feel like it's a good fit or I'm already so booked for that month that I just know it's going to wear me out to add one more thing I'll just say to the public you know what I I don't have space in my calendar right now.


However I do recommend these people for you to get in touch with and so that is the easiest way to say no to something or no to a client is to say you know what I'm not available for you right now but let me help you because I care about you and I value you let me guide you in the right direction. I'm not going to leave you hanging. I'm not going to just say no and walk away. Gonna say no but here are some people you can reach out to. Most people are going to appreciate that and value that a lot.


A perfect example of when I used this recently was a few weeks ago I had a client reach out to me around the holidays and said you know we've got our two college age kids coming in the birth to be home for the holidays. We want to do a family session. Are you available on these dates.


And I had done her daughter's senior photos and so I had told her you know if you ever need anything to let me know but it was over a weekend that was right before Christmas when we had family in town and we're hosting something at our house. And I just knew that I couldn't make it work. And I sent an email I said you know I am so excited for your kids to be home for the holidays I know you are gonna have a wonderful time with them however I have family in town that weekend as well.


I'm not available however here are the names of five other photographers in your area that are amazing family photographers that you can reach out to let them know that I referred you and hopefully you can find somebody that will work with your schedule. And she was so appreciative. She e-mailed you back told me thank you so much. I really appreciate it. She told me that they had finally reached out to one of the names I'd sent them and had hired somebody to come to their family session and it. I don't think that it's going to ruin the fact that she'll come to me again if she ever needs something but it was just an easy way of saying instead of just flat out saying no I'm not available.


I was able to give alternatives. So in your business when you are deciding to say yes or no to something I want you to really think about what is it going to benefit you and your business. I know that it's difficult sometimes and you're starting out to turn away clients that are paying clients because you're thinking oh my gosh. But it's money. And that's great. And you do have to really work hard and you have to kind of pay your dues and take on a lot of things that aren't always ideal in your business to bring in the income and to move your business forward.


But as your business grows and as you start really focusing on your ideal client I want you to also focus on saying yes to the things that are really good for your business because when you say yes to something ultimately you're saying no to something else you know you think about when you book a client. So you book a client and let's say they're going to come see you on November 8th and you are now saying no to anybody else that wants that same date or time. And so you want to make sure that those people you're saying yes to are people that you really want to work with the same thing goes with events.


You know it's really easy to say well I'm going to go to this event and that event and I'm going to sign up for this conference or this workshop or this networking thing or this coffee thing or this styled shoot or whatever it might be.


But you want to make sure that you're picking and choosing the things that are really going to benefit your business the most because one most of those require an investment of some kind to they require an investment of your time and that's time away from your business and away from your family. And so you want to make sure you are really cherry picking those things carefully so that you're not just throwing yourself around and everywhere and then wearing yourself out. You know I did an episode earlier this year about business burnout with Chelsea Foster and one of the things that we talked about was the fact that if you are constantly go go go go go.


You're going to burn out really fast. And so in order to avoid that burnout you want to make sure that you are being very intentional about the things that you are saying yes to in your business and the things that you're saying no to. And I will say this the more you say no the easier it gets.


It's still going to be tough and there's still going to be times when you feel guilty or you feel like you're missing out on something if you say no. But every time I've said no to something something better has always come along. So that is the lesson I'm taking away from that is that when you are confident enough to say no in your business or know in your personal life you're opening yourself up to really amazing things that can come your way OK so no one is a big win. And this is something that I personally struggle with a lot and I'm really working hard this year to master and that is to plan and be organized.


So those sound like two separate things but in my open they kind of go together and I'll start with the organizational part because I am not the most organized person in the world. I love the idea of organization. I love the idea of Excel spreadsheets and tables and charts and documents and planners and notepads and calendars and all those things. The Container Store makes me very happy. But in reality I have a hard time keeping the consistency of organization. So I have great intentions I start off every year every month every quarter and I'm going to get organized I'm going to do this I'm going to do that I'm going to lay it all out I map everything out and get it organized and then three or four weeks in I have not maintained it.


And so it starts to fall apart. So one of my goals for 2020 is to make sure that I continually stay organized. They stay on top of things. And so one thing that's helped me a lot with that multiple things but one in particular is my quick books app so cookbooks app on my phone has been a lifesaver because two of the areas I really struggled to keep track of things was one organizing my finances so I could easily track my finances. But when it came time to actually categorize my finances what I was spending money on I would find myself every year at the end of the year having to go through hundreds of transactions and categorize them.


And it was such a beating. And the second thing was my mileage. I'm terrible at tracking my Miles because I might drive to Starbucks to meet with a client and not even think about that as being a work related expense or mileage. And I wouldn't track it I wouldn't write it down. And so again I'd go to the end of the year and have to sit back and think oh my gosh I had to go back through my calendar and figure out where did I go. How far was it. How many miles was that you know this and that.


And so Della and the cookbook app on my phone has been huge for my business because one it allows me to quickly and easily pull up my transactions on my phone and I can swipe left or right to categorize them as business or personal if you need to personal. And then if it's business it allows me to choose from all of the tax appropriate topics or categories and figure out which one it fits into. So if I go to Starbucks and I buy a coffee for myself or my client I can easily categorize that as meals.


If I go order products for my clients I can easily go into my cookbooks app and I can swipe right or left I guess and categorize that as products. It's super super easy now the mileage part's really easy too because it literally is tracking the miles everywhere I go. It's constantly tracking the miles. So today I went and got my haircut and I'm sitting in the hairdresser studio she's putting the color in my hair and I was there for a good hour and a half and I went through in about 20 30 minutes and I was able to categorize all of my miles for the past couple of weeks.


So I was able to again swipe right or left or right for personal left for business and I could say hey every time you see me driving from this point to this point that's me dropping my daughter off at school that's going to automatically be personal and it will learn that it's the coolest thing guys it will learn where you go and it will automatically categorize it as personal or business. So if you have your studio or an office space or whatever it is that you go work at a shared workspace that you will work at on a regular basis your app the cookbooks app will learn where you've gone and it will know automatically that's a business related mileage.


It's the coolest thing. Technology blows my mind but that's been a huge thing and so I've been able to help like keep up to date on my transactions and my mileage so that now at the end of the year when I'm recording this I don't have to do anything it's done it's ready to go. It's so amazing. So as a listener of the growth means business podcast if you want to try cookbooks for half off your first year you can go to today's show notes or go to bitterly forward slash G M B Quick Books that's b i t dot l y forward slash G M B Quick Books.


Trust me if you're not using it yet it's going to completely change the game for you. So that's one way that I have learned to get organized in my business. Another one obviously is Honey book. You've all heard me talk about honey book as well and that has been huge too because it helps me organize all of my clients information all of my projects my calendar it color codes things for me I know when someone inquires and I don't hear back from them it puts into a follow up section so that I can easily go back and see who I need to follow up with.


I can categorize my clients by project type I can search for them by name I can connect with other people within honey book other vendors I can connect my hair and makeup person to a project I mean the list goes on and on. So that has also been really helpful in keeping me organized in my business. And again I'll throw this in there you do get half off of your first year with honey book when you use the grill means business codes so you go to Billy forge slash G M B honey book B I T dot l y forward slash G M B honey book and you'll get half off your first year it is such a great platform for any business owner.


All right so besides getting organized most of the successful entrepreneurs that I know and have heard or have learned from are sticklers for planning ahead. Now this is something that I have not been the best at. I'm working on it and definitely gonna be working at this year. And honestly this podcast has helped me to really learn to plan ahead because when I'm creating content every single week and I have to have interviews and episodes ready to go each week it's really hard to do that in just one week. So I have to plan ahead.


I have to have episodes recorded in advance and Scheduled Out ahead of time to have everything ready to go when it is to be done. The other thing that's really helped for me is having a V.A. so having somebody that is now helping me with all of the back end podcast things she has to have my episodes upload or I have to have my episodes uploaded for her in order to do it for her to do her job and so it keeps me accountable it keeps me moving forward ahead of schedule. It's also really fine in my opinion to sit down and look at the calendar and go OK I already know what I'm going to be doing for the next eight weeks of the podcast.


I've already got these episodes done. I need to finish these episodes get them uploaded and then we're just kind of hit the easy life. Now obviously I'm always working ahead. I'm still working on episodes but it's fun to have it planned out ahead of head of time and I haven't always done that in my photography business because of my photography business. I was more likely just kind of flying by the seat of my pants if an idea came in my mind. I would run away that I would see if it worked or if it didn't work.


The problem was or is when you do things like that when you take an idea that comes to you and you just run with it you don't always put in the effort needed to make it work properly. So here's an example. About a year and a half ago I had the idea in my photography business to do a free engagement session giveaway. So I was going to go on Facebook. I was in a created ad I was going to offer free engagement sessions for the first X amount of people that signed up in the hopes that if I gave them a free session they would then hire me for their wedding.


So I ran an ad on Facebook just quickly wrote something up slapped a photo on there. I think I targeted just newly engaged people in my area and I sent it out into the world. I had a form they filled out and then I would pick. I think the first 15 I think that came through are the ones that I reached back out to and said let's schedule your session honestly out of I think the twelve that actually booked the engagement session with me. I only booked one wedding just one one out of twelve.


Now looking back I realize the mistakes that I made I rushed in too quickly. I did not plan ahead. It was a poor time of year to do this. I think I was running this in the middle of the summer when that's not the biggest engagement season it's not when a lot of people are wanting to do engage in sessions because it's ridiculously hot here in Texas too. I didn't put a whole lot of energy or effort into my copy into the images into the ad the way the ad looked. 3 I did not focus on my targeting whatsoever.


I did the most generic basic targeting you could do for my ad engaged couples who were recently engaged in the Dallas Fort Worth area. OK that's so broad with the capabilities that Facebook has. I can narrow that down so much more but because I didn't plan ahead I was just flying by the seat of my pants. I was not really focused on a plan. I was just kind of throwing darts at a target and seeing what landed and unfortunately in that case not many landed. Now once I learned my lesson about eight months later I decided to do a similar ad with my boudoir clients.


I believe it was for Valentine's Day and so I planned ahead. I created content on social media leading up to running the ad I made sure that my ad had really strong copy that the photo was really could scroll stopping type image. I did two different ones that did woman a video one was a still image and did like a split test on that.


I really focused on my target my audience for that ad and I booked about 10 spots from it 10 clients. But the difference there was the planning aspect of it. I made a point to really sit down and figure out what my plan of action was instead of just shooting from the hip. And so that's something that I'm really working on in my business and I know that all of the successful entrepreneurs are really good at planning ahead. They will have a calendar a marketing calendar mapped out for the whole year or for the quarter now depending on your business.


For me I don't like to plan for a full year when it comes to content or marketing. I like to go by quarter because that gives me some flexibility to make changes if I need to at some point in the year. If I were to map out my whole year I don't know what next fall is going to look like. I'm not there yet and so I want to have the flexibility to go quarter by quarter but I will sit down now and I'm going to sit down and do a quarter at a time mapping out content and marketing plans and holidays and events coming up in my calendar of things I want to get done in the next couple of months and then a couple months from now I'll do the same thing for the next quarter.


The nice thing about that is is that then even though I don't have all my sessions in place as viscerally you never know when somebody is going to book a last minute shoot or you might have spots open you're trying to fill last minute and that's fine. It does give me a foundation to start with and so that's one of the biggest things I'm working on in this new year is really getting organized and planning ahead for my business so that I'm not just willy nilly picking strategies and seeing if they stick.


So that is one of the biggest things I've seen really successful entrepreneurs doing that. I want to emulate. I want to be more like that. And again it kind of goes back to the whole delegating as having a team in place to help me be accountable or having a support system to help me be accountable. One of the things that I really would like to do is maybe even get a group of people together a group of women together who want to sit down every quarter and map out their things together so that we can have a dedicated time to come together with our calendars and our laptops or whatever we need and look at what the next three months look like and get busy get to work get things down on paper and so wherever you're listening to this I encourage you to maybe do the same thing in your business.


If you are not great at planning ahead maybe you're super organized but you aren't a great planner or maybe you love to plan but you're not super organized or none of the above. I encourage you to make the time to do that because I really do think it's the number one thing that sets really successful entrepreneurs apart from the rest of us is that they are strategic about what they do in their business. They're not just flying by the sea their pants. They're not just taking the next cool idea that comes along and running with it within two minutes they are really focused.


And it also keeps them from being distracted from things along the way because if you think about it if you have a plan in place you're less likely to veer off that plan. You know I think about in our household we do weekly meal planning and so we plan for about five four to five meals a week to cook at home with some leeway for you know events and sporting things or whatever we have coming up on that begins. But knowing that I have a meal planned for that night and things I need to make that meal happen makes it so that I'm less likely to just go Hey let's drive through McDonald's or to text my husband at five forty five and say hey on your way home can you pick up something for dinner.


Because I have planned to have something ready and I have all the ingredients at the house that I need. And so when it comes to my business that's what I want to do. I want to have a plan in place and all the ingredients I need to make that plan happen. Ready to go on my business to that I'm not having to think about it and I'm not getting distracted by all the shiny things you know talk about shiny things syndrome.


It's when there's so much going on around you it's easy to scroll through Facebook and see do this or try that or buy this or order that or create this and having a plan in place and being organized and strategic helps me to not get sucked into those shiny things. Okay guys so those are the seven healthy habits of highly successful entrepreneurs. Some are run through them real quickly again. Number seven focus on the things that only you can do in your business. So focus on the things that you are really good at and then delegate the rest when you can.


Number six invest in yourself. Make sure you're taking time to rest and reset and educate and read and learn and get out of your own head a little bit. Number five know when to pivot. Be willing to roll with the punches and go with the flow when it comes to your business. Be open to opportunities and open to change so that your business can grow into something that you didn't even imagine was possible. Number four is endurance. Again thinking about that long distance run of everyday getting up and training and doing something that's going to move you closer to that finish line that's going to move you forward in your business.


Number three was to get outside your own head. Find a support system do something active do something to get away from your business for a little while to refresh and clear your mind and get everything out of your head so that you're not just letting it kind of sit and fester number two. Get comfortable saying no. Be okay with cherry picking the things in your business that you want to do or the people you want to work with and learn how to say no without feeling guilty. And the number one thing healthy habit for successful entrepreneurs is to be organized and plan ahead make sure that you have systems and teams in place to help you stay organized and then have a plan in place for your business so that you know the direction you're going and you don't get distracted by all the shiny things.


All right guys that does it for our episode this week. I hope you have an amazing week and I hope you take some of these healthy habits and we'll implement them into your business so that you can start seeing some incredible improvements in the New Year. All right ladies I will see you next week. Back here same time same place. Have a great week.


If you love today's episode don't forget to click the subscribe button so you never miss when a new episode goes live. Then head over to iTunes and leave a quick review to let the people know just how much you loved it. Thanks ladies. See you next week.


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