Now What? Finding Purpose as a Millennial

Now What? Finding Purpose as a Millennial

 

There are certain times in life when we find ourselves at a “Now what?” moment. Right after you graduate high school, right after you graduate college, and right after you find your first job are common times to ask yourself, “What is the point of this?”

 

In order to be successful and thrive, it’s essential to find a sense of purpose for your life. It can be a large, overarching life goal, or it can be a focus for this particular season of your life.

 

To find this sense of purpose and focus, however, you have to know what skills and passions you have. When you work within these strengths, you’ll find the most joy.

What Skills and Passions Matter?

As we move through life we learn how to do a lot of things. We learn to read, we learn to type, we learn – and then forget – how to use quadratic equations.

 

Those are not the skills and talents I’m talking about. I’m talking about identity-based skills and passions, things you are naturally good at that you can develop and leverage into work that makes you both successful and fulfilled.

 

One of my clients, for instance, found that her top strengths were:

  • Futuristic Thinking. She loves to plan for the future and big visions and dreams drive her forward.
  • She always wants to take action and implement the next step.
  • She loves to give praise, smile, and brighten others’ days. She also expects good results in her life.
  • Problem Solving. She is an incredible problem-solver. She thinks of every situation in terms of how it can be made better.
  • She’s a competitive person and loves knowing that she’s rising to the top of the group.

 

As you can see, these strengths can be used in a variety of ways, but this client will be unhappy if she’s in an inactive role, around negative people, unable to make a difference in her situation, and unable to plan for the future.

How to Discover Your Strengths

There are a lot of tools that help you discover your strengths and passions. Here are some ideas to get you started.

Self-Reflection

Taking some time to journal and reflect on times you’ve felt very happy and fulfilled. What did those situations have in common? What did you do to create them? This will give you a lot of insight into your passions and strengths. Some are near the surface, and some take some digging to find, but it’s worth the effort.

Asking Others

It’s very common for those close to us to be able to see more of our strengths than we do, especially if we’re self-critical. Ask supportive close friends and family what they see ask key strengths in your life. Also take note of what others are always asking your advice about. It’s likely to reveal a key expertise you haven’t thought of.

Strength-Finding Tools

One of my favorite tools to use in helping my clients identify strengths is the CliftonStrengths Finder. It uses a detailed survey to measure your strengths in 34 areas, giving you a top five that you can focus on. If you purchase the extended results, you can also see which areas you are weakest in. Knowing your weaknesses can help you choose business partners, friends, and more that compliment you and help you grow.

Coaching

A good coach can ask you questions and help you explore your life in ways that uncover strengths you never thought you had. Having an impartial outside person help you discover strengths and passions may be just what you need to get on the road to success!

Making the Most of Talents and Passions

Once you have discovered what your talents and passions are, the next step is to apply them in ways that help you live a purposeful and successful life.

 

Because talents and passions are often general and can be applied in many ways, you may need help. A qualified coach can help you find ways to move your life closer to what your talents reveal would make you happiest.

 

It doesn’t matter where you’re starting now, what matters is where your focus is. There are always ways to take steps toward your dreams. Let me help you find them!

 

In my work,  I’ve helped clients change careers, increase their income, make money from passions they assumed would always be hobbies, and more. Contact me today at info@plantosucceed.net for a free consultation to take the first step toward your own dreams!

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This Isn’t Working Anymore!

I am exhausted! This isn’t working anymore! I work all the time and can’t catch a break. If only I could land my dream client… If only my family support the hard work that I do… If only I had a chance to slow down a bit. If only I knew exactly what the right answer was, I’d just do that!

Does this sound like something you’ve said lately? Maybe you’ve only thought it? Being an entrepreneur can be one of the most rewarding jobs. And it can be one of the most lonely. Next to money problems; feelings of isolation, burnout, and indecisiveness on where to take the company can be overwhelming. With so many entrepreneurs struggling with direction in their businesses how do you beat the slump?

I took your advice here and what has worked for my personal 1-on-1 coaching clients and here is the top advice I have compiled from you to you!

Real Connection

Overwhelmingly the response was having an authentic connection to a business best friend took some of the pressure off. Get up close and personal with an individual or a mastermind group that will pu8sh you to grow your business and tell you when you need to slow down. Having like-minded individuals around will increase your ability and function in your business because we all know,

“You become like the 5 people you spend the most time with!”

So spend your time well!

Having a business friend or a mastermind group to work with to keep you growing your businesses and not just working in your business carries a value that grows exponentially. As vulnerable as you are the greater the potential for growth.

Mindfulness and Relaxation

The next response I have from your peers was mindfulness and relaxation. Being able to unplug from your business to be fully present with your family and friends increases the personal connection. It allows you to be fully present with the ones you love the most and support you while you take on the market you are a part of.

One of my clients advised that until he took the time to slow down with his family he found it harder and harder to get out of bed in the morning to work in his business. By cutting out the quality time he had with his family he had lost sight of the “why” he had started his business in the first place. He originally wanted the flexibility to go to family events, coach his son’s baseball team and have a regular date night with his wife. While he was building his business he struggled to set the boundaries necessary with clients to protect his why. Until he focused on mindfulness to deal with the stress he had completely lost touch with what originally charged him up to accomplish great things in his business.

He took the time to make the necessary changes and unfortunately lost a couple of clients but the quality of his work grew. Most importantly his family got their husband and father back!

These traits of leaders make all the difference in growing your company in a personally sustainable way. 

Take the opportunity to grow your relationships with peer businesses and share this article! Comment below your favorite Mindfulness technique or relaxation activity!

 

 

 

 

Banish Burnout

With the Holidays behind us and the New Year stretching out seemingly endless, it can be overwhelming to get back into action. Don’t worry if you are feeling burnout, stressed and the struggles of a drained bank account.

I have had several clients reaching out to me asking, “How do I create a plan for 2017 when I’m already so tired? Where do I go from here?”

First, I feel you! I have had many years where I spent in a dead sprint from Nov 1 until it seemed like the end of January. This year was the first year I had the holidays off since high school. (ahem, no comments about my age!)I was in a rut where I wasn’t able to enjoy the holiday season, let alone my family. It took me until the third holiday season in my business to take the time off to be with my family.

How did I banish my holiday burnout?

Mindfulness. Now a lot of people talk about mindfulness but how do you DO THAT? When I’m talking about mindfulness its a combination of focus and intentionality. One way you build mindfulness or stress into your life is the story you have in your head while activities are happening.

One of my clients (really all of them) is brilliant! But she so easily sweeps that aside, especially in her business. We know being an entrepreneur is wonderful, however, it rarely has all peaks without the valleys. One bump happens and she forgets she is a poised, intelligent, capable business woman. Not just her but sometimes as owners we become crisis driven.

Take the time to be mindful each day and as often throughout the day as possible.

When you are in a situation, what you say to yourself in your head around the situation creates a tie in your brain. For instance, when you are looking around and your house is much messier than you would love for it to be day to day think about what you say to yourself.

Do you use phrases like, “I can’t believe I live in this filth! I’m/ this is disgusting. I should be better, more organized…” or any other accusatory speech? These words and phrases build and reinforce the story that you are a failure. You will begin to have an emotional response based on the story you have been hearing in your head.

One way you can be mindful in situations where your house doesn’t look perfect is to practice gratitude.

Look for 3 things for which you are grateful. For example, I’m grateful for the blanket strewn across the couch because it symbolizes quality time with my family.

Being mindful of the benefits and consequences of having a family, love, community or connection often look messy. It can look like dishes, or crumbs on the floor, groceries to put away, laundry that needs to be done.

In a work setting, this is reflected in having new challenges. You can be upset about challenges popping up or having new places to overcome. That is one way to view business flow.

Another way you can spin the story in your head is being grateful to have new challenges, that they symbolize growth, expansion, a healthy company.

I was speaking with a client in one of my mastermind groups and they informed me they were not getting the sales they wanted and couldn’t understand why. They had made a post on Facebook about selling a product in their new business one time.

That’s the equivalent of shouting from your porch, “I started a business!”

and never following up. We spoke a little about managing expectations and the story they had in their head about what people thought.

As humans, we still don’t read minds but we like to make up what others think. Staying open, and vulnerable, to give people the benefit of being personally invited into our story builds a connection to the business. We worked on being open to giving people the benefit of the doubt, that maybe the customers were distracted or hadn’t seen the post.

In that case, it would be a disservice to not repeat the message about the product.

My client was able to move from stressed and overwhelmed to hopeful and open to sharing the product they offered and get back out there!

When we look at these stories we are being intentional with our focus and the conclusions we draw from actions and reactions to ourselves.

We choose every day the connections we make from all of the data streaming into our lives.

When you tell the data where to go and how to connect we respond intentionally. When the data has us running scared, running stressed we are reacting in the moment to a temporary position as a permanent issue.

I challenge you to start paying attention to what you say to yourself about what’s going on!

If you are looking to Up-Level Your Mindset We have a free 5-day challenge to help you Banish burnout, Gain Clarity and Build Momentum to have your best year yet in 2017!

Email info@plantosucceed.net or click on Up-level your Mindset.

 

 

Five Myths of Entrepreneurial Success

 

As Millennials become more and more of the workforce, entrepreneurship is surging in popularity. The millennial generation favors independence and meaning in their work, and don’t see becoming a senior executive as the apex of their careers.

 

It’s no surprise, then, that 67% of millennials have a goal of starting their own business. Being an entrepreneur is hard work, but you get to shape the company and set the vision yourself. That, along with incredible flexibility and purpose, makes entrepreneurship ideal for young adults.

 

There are, however, a lot of unfortunate myths surrounding entrepreneurial success. Believing these myths can hold you back from creating the impact you intended to make. Before you set out on your entrepreneurial adventure, make sure you don’t believe these five myths.

 

Myth #1:  You Can Never Quit

Many entrepreneurs go into business with a “burn the ships” mentality – that is, they cut off all opportunity to change course, and feel like they have to stick with their idea no matter what happens.

 

Unfortunately, this can lead to dismal results. Sticking with an idea that doesn’t have a good fit with the market is one of the primary reasons businesses fail. It’s vital to be willing to pivot or even abandon a product or service if it’s not something that other people want to pay for.

 

If you can’t sell your product or service, you are digging a financial hole and not making any progress, or your business is ruining your personal life, quitting could be the best decision you’ve ever made.

 

Myth #2: You Can Be Prepared for Everything

The Boy Scout motto, “Be prepared”, is also an important mantra among entrepreneurs. Planning for how you will handle challenges (distributor falls through? Less demand than expected? Turned down for financing?) is an important part of being successful as an entrepreneur.

 

You should also have some plans for success – how you’ll handle production for a big jump in demand, making sure your servers are strong enough for a surge in website traffic, and more. However, don’t think for a minute that you can be prepared for everything. Being adaptable and able to adjust to changing circumstances is essential to entrepreneurial success.

 

Trying to be too prepared can be a delay tactic – a way to prevent yourself from taking action on something that scares you. Don’t hold back – over-planning won’t help you, it will just make you more frustrated if things don’t go the way you expect. Instead, take reasonable precautions and be prepared for change. For more information here Read.

 

Myth #3: If You Build It, They Will Come

Having a great idea is the seed of entrepreneurship. But it’s only the seed – there’s a lot you have to do to nurture it and encourage it to grow. Unfortunately, some entrepreneurs assume that if they build their good idea, the world will flock to their door.

 

Many business owners think they can spread their idea simply by posting on Facebook or Instagram. While that’s a start, being active on social media isn’t enough. You have to market yourself in a way that stands out. Consumers have a huge number of options in every category, and all of the information is at their fingertips thanks to the internet.

 

Instead of practicing “random acts of marketing”, create a marketing plan that allows you to systematically build awareness about your company, move people through your sales funnel, and gain customers on a regular basis.

 

Myth #4: Winners Don’t Work

There is a certain segment of entrepreneurs who are looking for a “silver bullet” that will allow them to make large amounts of money without working very hard. I see it all the time in Facebook ads, where gurus claim to be ready to show you how to “earn six figures while working 10 hours a week”.

 

First, let me tell you that the only way they’re earning six figures – if they even are – is by selling the idea of “no work” to others. Secondly, the idea that winners don’t work – or that they only work for a few years and then sit on their laurels – is not the foundation of business success.

 

Instead of looking for a silver bullet that doesn’t exist, take the attitude of the tortoise from the “Tortoise and the Hare”. Slow and steady consistent work wins the race.

 

Myth #5: Mindset Doesn’t Matter

On the other hand, there are entrepreneurs who understand the need to take action but focus on grinding it out every day to the exclusion of working on their mindset and personal and professional growth.

 

Being a successful entrepreneur takes more than long hours. It takes learning and making changes in your internal world as well. Some of the mindsets that are vital to entrepreneurial success include:

  • If you don’t have a clear vision for what you want the company to be and what purpose it serves, you won’t be able to be successful over the long term. You also need to learn to communicate that vision effectively to others as your business grows.
  • Believe in Yourself and Your Business. Believing in yourself and your business will give you the emotional resilience you need when you encounter setbacks. Buy In
  • Willingness to Step Out of Your Comfort Zone. Brandon Burchard said, “Mediocrity begins the precise moment you swap love for challenge with love of comfort.”
  • A Bias Toward Action. Learning is vital, but it isn’t true that knowledge is power. Knowledge is only potential power – true power comes from acting on the new understanding.

 

Having the right mindsets will help you take the right actions, which will help you succeed. You can’t overlook the importance of working on yourself from the inside out.

 

If you’re ready to embrace entrepreneurial success in 2017, I’m here to help. I’ll help you identify limiting mindsets, take action to make changes, and break out of any false beliefs you have. Join us today here to connect with a group of Firestarters in the Fired Up! Entrepreneur Community Growth.