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7 Incredibly Powerful Motivational Tips For New Entrepreneurs

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7 Incredibly Powerful Motivation Tips For New Entrepreneurs

So you have a brilliant business idea and are all set to put in your papers at your day job so you can finally call yourself an entrepreneur. Excited?  I’m sure you are!

But what happens when the business building begins? When you clock hours longer than you did at your “job”? When you hear the word “no” so many times, it reminds you of when you were 4-years old and in grade school, and when the money that was to come pouring in remains a distant dream?

That feeling of excitement, the passion and energy begin to fade and the motivation to “make it” starts to slip away. I get it. As an entrepreneur for the last 7 years, I’ve seen it all. And if you’re starting out, you need to dose up on staying motivated and inspired, especially in those early days when it’s all too easy to get overwhelmed and disheartened.

Here are 7 insanely effective and powerful ways to keep your motivation levels high and keep your passion pumping all the time:

1. Surround yourself with people who get you

Who do you hang out with after you’re done with working on your business? Do they understand your work? Do they feel your passion? Can they be a sounding board? A supportive shoulder?

Surround yourself with people who understand what being an entrepreneur is all about. That is the power of a mastermind group. It can be just a few of you touching base every other day or a larger group for accountability and growth.

Whatever you’re trying to get from your mastermind groups, make sure that you have one and that they’re positive, supportive, inspiring.

“Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher.” – Oprah Winfrey 

2. Read, watch or listen to something positive every day

We live in the information age and it’s easy to get bombarded with all sorts of messages. Newspapers, books, magazines, social media, blogs, TV shows, podcasts, the list goes on and on.

To stay motivated on a daily basis, make sure you take your “positive pills” or small doses of content that keep you inspired. Feed your mind positivity and you’ll feel positive and in control. Feed your mind negativity and you know how you’ll feel.

Whether it’s an article, a podcast, a blog post, a phone call with a friend, make sure that you have daily doses of positivity factored into your schedule.

 

3Keep your why front and center

It’s easy to feel disheartened when it seems no one, other than you, is interested in your business ideas. When such thoughts threaten to take over, remind yourself of your “why”.

Answer this question: What is the core reason behind your desire and passion to be an entrepreneur?

Dig deep and reconnect with what really made you want to put in those papers or pursue this passion. Keep that “why” front and center.

 

4. Practice gratitude

Gratitude is a powerful and proven technique to keep motivation levels up. Looking for the good and being grateful for what we may take for granted helps entrepreneurs see what’s really working for them. Even when it seems nothing is.

Starting today, keep a simple notebook or journal and at the end of the day, write down 3 to 5 things that you’re grateful for. Review your journal whenever you feel the motivation levels dip. You’ll be amazed at how quickly you’ll feel fired up and inspired.

 

5. Keep moving forward

There will be days when taking action will seem tough. When all you’ll want to do is curl up in the fetal position and bawl your head off. But I encourage you to step up and step forward. Baby steps are all that it takes.

Break down big goals into tiny actions and take one step at a time. Keep moving forward and you’ll never feel stuck in a rut again.

“Action is the real measure of intelligence.” – Napoleon Hill

6. Step away from the laptop

It’s tempting to hole up in your office and keep working away on your dream idea. One word of advice: Don’t. As someone who’s been there, I have to tell you, shutting down the laptop and heading outdoors is key to your mental and physical health.

Go outside. Take up a hobby. Power walk, run or do yoga. Meet people in real life. Travel. Read. You get the point, right? Do anything that doesn’t have you sitting in front of the laptop, all day long. Your brain and your body will thank you for it.

 

7. Dare yourself

Finally, motivation feeds on motivation. In other words, every now and then get the adrenalin pumping and dare yourself to take insanely scary actions. Want to reach out to that influencer or investor? Go ahead, introduce yourself.

Don’t let the little voice in your head hold you back. You’ll be amazed at how fired up you feel when you dare yourself to do something you’ve been dragging your feet on.

Are you an entrepreneur who’s just starting out? Which one of these 7 motivation tips will you be using right away? Please leave your thoughts in the comment section below!

Malik is the gourmet copywriter and community manager for time-starved entrepreneurs at Content Bistro. She loves crafting great content, reading good books and drinking gallons of coffee.  Find out what she’s writing or reading currently by following her on Facebook.

15 Comments

15 Comments

  1. Shrika

    Jun 15, 2016 at 11:00 pm

    All the points are very motivating, to me points three and seven are the most important aspects. Thank you for sharing.

  2. Nino Fisher

    May 18, 2016 at 1:58 am

    I’m just starting out. I constantly have emotional waves going through my gut. I get scared to
    touch a paper with my pan. I know that I just have to do it but my mind is constantly telling me, go ask more questions, go find more info to make sure you are doing the right thing.
    It’s easy to get distracted from doing your project with all this thoughts and emotions going on inside you.
    I try hard to focus on the end result, on where I want to see myself after realizing my dream, that helps me to make baby steps forward. I am new to all this, I’ve never owned a business. It takes guts, courage to take a risk building a business.
    I decided to be courageous and take risks until I will see the end result I so desire to see.
    I’ll keep my focus on what’s important and try hard to ignore distractive thoughts and emotions.

  3. Diane Hays

    Apr 15, 2016 at 2:19 pm

    Wow this is empowering!!! Thank you so much! I wanted to comment and connect with you and tell you I’m thinking of reinventing my brand and starting a blog and this was just the little push I needed to stay on my path and start moving forward and stop being scared and holding myself back! Im kind of an introvert sometimes about my work because being an artist its venerable sharing what you make with the world and its opinions. This is my year to push though and take my business to the next level! Thank you so much! If you have any advice for my blog please feel free to connect with me on social media and email me your thoughts I would love to hear from you!
    Diane Hays

  4. Nihar Pradhan

    Jan 18, 2016 at 6:58 am

    Beautifully written Prerna, very crisp and indeed insightful thoughts. One thing that really changed me as an entrepreneur is being with people who have done it and seen it, people who are successful and people who are good at heart. It rubs on you. It changes your thinking. Yes, ultimately it is the gratitude in attitude that makes all the difference, success is incidental but gratitude and grace should be integral to our nature…

  5. Maxine Harris

    Jan 16, 2016 at 7:21 am

    Thank you so much for the tips! I am a full time mom and freelance web designer. To make it through, it is important to remember why I chose this route: to be more involved in life and family, and to make use of the flexibility for the greater good.

  6. Jim LaValley

    Jan 13, 2016 at 3:57 pm

    All great suggestions! I think that keeping your “WHY” right in front of you is spot on and that staying positive is a must. Thanks for the article.

  7. Jess | Make and Do Crew

    Jan 12, 2016 at 6:38 am

    Staying focused on your WHY is so important! I am trying to do more things that scare me this year. It’s sort of my little experiment. Like, if I tackle anything I’m scared of, what will happen? Only 2016 knows… 🙂

    Thanks for the inspiring read!

  8. Shruti

    Jan 12, 2016 at 5:06 am

    Love your tips Prerna! as a newbie entrepreneur, I am going through this phase and your tips are bang on! esp #1. I couldn’t have done it if I didn’t have my band of fellow entrepreneurs cheering me on. & #4 is what is really helping me stay motivated.

    • Prerna Malik

      Jan 12, 2016 at 6:36 am

      Thanks so much Shruti! SO glad these tips resonated with you and awesome to see you putting them in action too!! Go YOU!

  9. Darci

    Jan 12, 2016 at 2:50 am

    I so needed to read this today. Being a new entrepreneur can be a lonely road,and I needed to be reminded of these tips. Thank you so much Prerna!

    • Prerna Malik

      Jan 12, 2016 at 6:35 am

      You’re most welcome Darci! SO glad this came at the perfect time for you!! Much love!

  10. Prerna Malik

    Jan 12, 2016 at 2:12 am

    Thanks Charlene! You’re absolutely right. Motivation is fueled by motivation.. Excited about your week and your year!! All the best!!

  11. Stephen osoko

    Jan 12, 2016 at 12:30 am

    I’m starting to surround myself with people who get it to take our dreams to the next level!

    • Prerna Malik

      Jan 12, 2016 at 1:52 am

      Hi Stephen! THAT is awesome! It is amazing to be inspired and encouraged as well as kept focused by those around us! All the very best for the road ahead!

  12. Charlene Rhinehart

    Jan 11, 2016 at 4:45 pm

    Great tips! As an entrepreneur, you have to surround yourself around like-minded individuals in order to keep your dream alive when you are faced with insurmountable obstacles. I also like your reminder about connecting with the outside world. It’s so easy to get caught up in work that we forget about everything else. Last but not least, I thank you for sharing your bold call to action in tip #7. Motivation FEEDS on Motivation. Sometimes you have to get the adrenaline pumping and DARE yourself to take insanely BOLD actions that will catapult your success. This is exactly what I plan to do this week! Thanks Prerna!

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Entrepreneurs

7 Days to Success: a Weekly Ritual to Become a Successful Entrepreneur

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We’ve often said there is no exact formula for success. While that’s true, there are some definite steps you can take to move your business in the right direction. If we could put this into some orderly sequence and create a system to follow every day, wouldn’t it be nice?

We brainstormed some ideas and here’s what we came up with. We’re not saying that these seven things are the only things you should do, but if you try one per day for seven days, you might be able to create new habits faster than you think!

Sunday: Planning day

Rest and plan. When things are quieter, take some time on Sunday afternoon to reflect on what you did the week before. After this, brainstorm some “mini-goals” you’d like to see accomplished in the coming week. Don’t try to plan too much at once, just think of the tasks that are the most productive and focus on those primarily. Always “plan in analog” and write them on a yellow legal pad or white paper so you can feel free to mess up and scratch out various ideas without limits. Lastly, “weed your garden” and transfer the best ideas to your “to do” list for the week.

Monday: Implement

Once you have the main ideas you plan to implement, plan the most important ones into your work week. You can spread the tasks out over the various days of the week or do three or four in one week. Focus on the most productive tasks you think will bring in the most revenue and save the others for when you have more time. Write up to six things on your “to do” list that you think you can achieve for each day.

Tuesday: Get up earlier

Though I am a night owl myself, I’ve learned that I can gain much more momentum if I get up earlier in the day and do a couple of important things before the day gets started. This idea has been shared by others in the past in the form of books that recommend that you get five things done before 11am and other similar ideas. We’re not saying that you have to do any certain number of tasks before 11. Rather, it just means you can use the early morning hours to achieve as much as possible to jumpstart your day. This technique may make you feel more productive and inspire you to keep working later to achieve even more.

“One key to success is to have lunch at the time of day most people have breakfast.” – Robert Brault

Wednesday: Focus on branding

Marketing is one of the most challenging things a business owner has to do to get their brand noticed. Yet, many often miss the mark because branding is more important than marketing. Despite what you might think, they are not the same. Marketing is focusing on products and services. Branding is focusing on your business and how it helps people to reach their personal goals. When you focus on branding, you are working on integrating all of the aspects of your marketing plan into one solid strategy which will place your brand in front of more people through multiple platforms and channels.

Thursday: Innovate and create

If you are a product-oriented business, Thursday is a good day to focus on innovation. Maybe you have your “creative team meetings” at another time, and that’s fine. Nonetheless, spend some time thinking about the innovative side of your business and write down some ideas for your next project. Get inspired and think about what Steve Jobs meant when he told his staff, “We’re going to pretend the universe.”

Friday: Evaluate and revamp

It has been said that “a life unexamined is not worth living,” but a business that is not measured is not worth having either. Take one day a week to evaluate how you are doing. Look back at your metrics, your ROI, and your sales on Friday and see how it compares to the week before or the month before and think about where you want to be in the next six months or year.

“Don’t lower your expectations to meet your performance. Raise your level of performance to meet your expectations. Expect the best of yourself, and then do what is necessary to make it a reality.” – Ralph Marston

Saturday: Do something fun

Yes, even obsessed entrepreneurs need a little downtime. Otherwise, what are you doing this thing called entrepreneurship for? Taking a little time for yourself and doing something you love like painting, birdwatching or photography can renew your mind and spirit and get you ready for a new week. Do anything you enjoy that is helpful for recharging your batteries. Get into meditation or check out the Calm app. It can rejuvenate your mind and spirit leading to your ultimate success.

We hope these tips will help you do something each day to move closer to your goals. It’s not so important when you do them, as long as you consider these important areas of your business growth and implement, plan, and evaluate as you go. You’ll do it, one day at a time!

How do you structure your days in order to win the week? Please comment below with some tips!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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5 Things Entrepreneurs Need to Do to Stay Motivated

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Being an entrepreneur is the American dream. It’s all about defining your success, paving your way, and living life the way you want. Many of us walked out of a comfortable job because we no longer wanted to be rats in the maze of an employer who manipulated us into fueling their dream. We wanted to create and follow our dreams. But sometimes there are days when you can’t seem to find the motivation to move forward, and that’s when you need a little boost in thinking.

One thing to remember is that there is no “magic solution” for success as a business owner. Every entrepreneur must find their way to create, manufacture, produce, and sell their products, services, and ideas. The way that you find yourself doing this may not be as unique as the concept you have for your business. That’s okay, as long as it works for you and creates the result you want..

As entrepreneurs, we are in a constant state of “flux.” We must always be evaluating, analyzing, and measuring our metrics and our success. We are often in competition with others, but we are always in competition with ourselves. We should always strive to be a better version of ourselves and our business than we were yesterday.

Every successful entrepreneur will tell you that the “daily grind” is what results in wealth and success. The dream is the glamorous part as it’s what keeps you looking toward your goals and keeps you working hard.

Nonetheless, for those days that the daily grind seems hard and your energy wanes, try these 5 tips to stay motivated:

1. Remember the goal and keep your eye on the ball

I like Mark Cuban’s analogy of entrepreneurship being like the game of basketball. In his book, How to Win in the Sport of Business, he points out that having a business is like winning a basketball game. You must always be watching what your competition is doing while keeping your motivation high. Keep your eye on the goal.

2. Do something every day that moves you forward

One of the frustrations of entrepreneurs is that they feel like they are not moving their business forward fast enough. Remember Rome wasn’t built in a day. So just make sure you’re at least doing one thing daily that moves you closer to your goals. It will give you a feeling of accomplishment when the going gets tough.

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.” – Albert Einstein

3. Write down no more than six things to do each day

People sometimes overwhelm themselves by planning too many things to do in one day, and then they feel let down when they don’t get them done. If you limit your primary goals to six things per day, you are going to be more likely to achieve them.

4. Connect with other entrepreneurs and learn their tricks

This is not to say that you need to copy what others are doing, but simply get a sense for what keeps them going and motivated and share ideas. It can help you feel like you’re on the right track with support from others like you with similar goals.

5. Think of yourself as a captain

You are the captain of your ship. You’ll come across crashing waves, massive storms, rocks, and iceberg, but the way you maneuver around them will determine your fate. Always keep your eyes on the harbor and take pride in the fact that you’re in the top 2% of the country by sailing out on your own as an independent business owner.

“If you’re serious about changing your life, you’ll find a way. If you’re not, you’ll find an excuse.” – Jen Sincero

A few other things to take with you on your journey

As an entrepreneur, the goal is what you’re working for, day-by-day, week-by-week because you’ll get there a little at a time. It’s about more than the goal because it’s about the journey. Life is a journey and so is entrepreneurship. The challenges we face as entrepreneurs only serve to make us stronger and better able to handle the storms we face on the sea of entrepreneurship.

Remember the payoff is incredible! It’s the biggest gamble of your life but when it pays off, it pays off huge! Remember the movie, “The Perfect Storm,” starring Richard Gere? He talked about being a swordboat captain and about how few people choose that life, yet the ones who did loved it. They enjoyed the solitude, embraced the challenge and it’s what kept them going.

How do you stay motivated on a daily basis? Let us know by commenting below!

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You Have To Have A Side Hustle (Like Me With My Blogging) – Here’s Why

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This whole blogging thing you see me do is my side hustle.

It’s what I do when I get home from work.
It’s what I do when you’re at the pub with mates on the weekend.
It’s what I do when you’re watching House Of Cards.

Blogging is my side hustle because it’s what has transformed my life and what fills me with passion.
Blogging is my happy place and it’s how I serve the world.

Now many of you reading this have zero side hustle. You’re not passing go and collecting the $200 that comes with doing a side hustle daily. You’re missing out on everything that can come with building something for yourself.

I’m going to get to the point quickly. Here’s why you need a side hustle:

 

You’ll be stuck in your dead-end job forever.

Yes, what I just said is harsh. I said it because it’s true. You’ll never escape that job you hate and that pain in the ass boss that sucks all of your energy away unless you get a side hustle.

Start with what you like doing and then design a side hustle around it. Ensure that at least one action is taken every day. Then, let that momentum build into a side hustle.

Once you have momentum, the aim of the game is to let the side hustle take over from that dead-end job that makes you feel like crap.

 

You’ll never get to travel.

The world is such an amazing place (cliché I know).
There’s no point the world being beautiful and you hearing that cliché if you never get to enjoy it.

A side hustle is what you’ll eventually monetize so that you can work less and play more (i.e. travel).

Travel is one of the biggest regrets of those who are dying. You’ll never get to check back into planet Earth again so you may as well travel while you can.

Build that startup. Launch that website. Record that video. Or, in my case, write that blog post that inspires.

 

You’ll miss those family moments.

A side hustle is designed to give you time and allow you to do more of what you love. That’s what blogging does for me and the same can happen for you.

“Being consumed by a job you hate, so you can earn just enough to survive, so you can impress your boss and people you don’t care about, is the definition of failure”

I believe you can spend more time with your family. I believe you should feel inspired every day and do something that makes you happy. I believe that family is one of the few things in life that we’re destined to cherish.

Okay, that last line was a bit soppy for a bloke but who gives a rat’s – it’s true.

 

You’ll never get to experience the art of fulfillment.

Blogging gives me a sense of fulfillment. I feel like I have done something that matters to me and that matters to the world. If you don’t go and get a side hustle, you’ll never experience what it’s like to be fulfilled.

Being fulfilled makes you feel like the glass is always half full instead of half empty, or worse yet, looking at the glass as empty with a crack in the bottom that was caused by everyone else.

When you feel fulfilled, you find yourself wanting to do things for others. You find giving easier, you want to be a mentor, you want to perform charitable acts, and all round, life is good.

I want you to feel life is good too. That’s why I want you to get a side hustle amigo!

 

***Parting advice***

Oops….I nearly thought that headline read “parenting advice.” Now that would suck because I have no idea about that…haha

No one said this whole side hustle would be easy. You will need to work hard and you’ll have to take action. You may even need to do some soul searching and that’s fine too. My point is that you need to stop delaying and begin building something. The whole construction process I find is better than when you’ve built your side hustle.

It feels good to be in control and to serve others with your side hustle. I want that feeling for you too.

Go out and start your side hustle.

If you want to increase your productivity and learn some more valuable life hacks, then join my private mailing list on timdenning.net

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These 3 Warning Signs Predict Your About to Make a Big Business Mistake

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“Honesty is the fastest way to prevent a mistake from turning into a failure.” James Altucher said this, the multiple bestselling author, and a man who has failed (and overcome failure) more than most. The truth is, mistakes hurt.

Whether it’s your mistake or somebody else’s, it stirs all sorts of fears and worries within you. You start to question yourself. You wonder what will happen next, and what the worst case scenario may look like. Mistakes are NOT fun, but mistakes also play an important role in your growth and success. For as Albert Einstein once said, “a person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.”

So assuming you don’t wish to play it safe your entire life, you must accept mistakes happen. Some mistakes are unavoidable; there to test and teach us. But what if I told you many of your mistakes were avoidable, and by looking in the right places you could spot them before they happen?

Most mistakes begin small; tiny little things that barely register in your day. But because you pretend they don’t happen, disregard them, or make poor decisions on the back of them, these little mistakes grow into big mistakes, which in turn develop into life-altering failure.

Certain mistakes are thrust upon you, and you cannot do much to avoid them. Yet many begin slowly, and by keeping your eyes open you can spot them before they happen. So if you notice any of the following, take note for a mistake may be near.

1. You Become Complacent

One of the biggest warning signs of all is when you grow complacent. You may enjoy the idea of an ‘easy life’, but the truth is you need a challenge. When it comes to growing a successful business, this is never more true. You need to remain motivated. Like a shark, you can never stop moving.

Such complacency lead to Thomas Frank’s biggest mistake of all. As he built ‘College Info Geek’ while still at university, he was always busy. Between studying, blogging, and marketing, he had little time to spare. So as his site grew, he decided to cut back on his studies and take fewer classes. This made sense, as more time spent on his business meant more chance of success. Yet with this extra unstructured time on his hands, Thomas grew complacent.

Instead of growing, his business plateaued. He didn’t feel as motivated, and it wasn’t until he got this motivation back that ‘College Info Geek’ continued its growth.

“If you look around, complacency is the great disease of your autumn years, and I work hard to prevent that.” – Nick Cave

2. You Get Stuck in your Own Head

Although you may surround yourself with people all day, this entrepreneurial roller coaster is a lonely ride. It’s easy to get stuck in your own head, as you work on your ideas, your plans, and your growth. You become so fixated on your work that you shut yourself off to the rest of the world. You become blind to opportunity, mistakes, and everything else.

Take John Corcoran, the co-founder of Rise 25, and a man who has built his career around connecting with influential people. Despite building a successful career in politics, entertainment, and the tech scene, John desired more. He started his own practice, and got to work on his own version of the American Dream.

He worked so hard that he went months without networking and creating new connections. All those relationships he had built during his successful career slipped by the wayside. He condemned himself to a lonely entrepreneurial existence, and had little to show for it.

Sure, he was busy, but did he grow? No! John got stuck in his own head, and it lead to what he described as his biggest business mistake of all. This entrepreneurial rollercoaster is lonely enough as it is, so don’t make matters worse by getting stuck in your own head.

3. You’re Surrounded By “Yes Men”

“Yes” is a dangerous word. If all you say is yes, you’re sure to drown under work, responsibility, and commitment. Yet it isn’t only when you say yes that issues arise, because when you’re surrounded by a bunch of “yes men”, mistakes are often close. Scott Oldford experienced this as he became a well known “web guy” at a young age.

During a period when most of us plucked up the courage to ask that girl or guy to the dance, Scott made large sums of money and won prestigious awards. He had everything a teenager could want, including a group of people who told him what he wanted to hear.

Scott soon lost everything he built, as he began to believe his own hype. He had to start from scratch. Today, he’s doing fine, but only after he lost track of what matters. That’s what happens when you surround yourself with “yes” — it blinds you from what you need to see and hear.

“Say no to everything, so you can say yes to the one thing.” – Richie Norton

Of course, warning signs like these won’t vanish mistakes from your life. Some are unavoidable. Some provide invaluable lessons you need to experience for yourself. But the sooner you nip these mistakes in the bud, the easier you’ll find your road to success.

I learned this from speaking to those who have been there and done it; successful folk at the top of their game. Don’t wait until you make your own mistakes. Learn from those who have been there and done it. And while you do, keep your eyes open for these three big warning signs.

Share with us a mistake you made and how you overcame it! Let us know by commenting below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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Why I Had to Drop My Superman Complex and Hire a Marketing Genius

Joel Brown

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For many years I had the Superman Complex. I thought I could handle every aspect of my business, no one could do it better than me, I knew it all and if anyone else put their hands on it, they would stuff it up. I credited much of my business success to the fact that I had done a lot of it myself. The truth was, I had achieved a lot in the first few years utilizing my own skills and creative ignorance, but as the Addicted2Success brand sky rocketed so did the demands for new levels of execution.

So I hired 3 awesome individuals: Tyler, Armando & Joe to help with content management and administration and it wasn’t long after this that I discovered that in order for Addicted2Success and the community to reach the level of impact it deserved I would need to find a marketing analytics and SEO development guy.

That was when I decided to give Joseph Lazukin a shot.

At only 25 years old, this college dropout turned whiz kid has been making a name in all the right circles, and out of good humor and fun, I decided to put Joseph to the test here at Addicted2Success to see if the rumors were true, and here were the results…

Within two weeks of working with Joseph, he doubled our site traffic and increased our revenue by nearly 300%, while at the same time ranking Addicted2Success.com for more keywords than our closest competitor.

Here is our SEO graph :

learn SEO

After having such a massive impact, I decided to interview Joseph and pick his brain on the advice he had for up and coming entrepreneurs struggling to market their businesses, and to also share an exciting announcement to all of our A2S readers…

So what do you ask a million dollar consultant? I had a few ideas, and I think you’ll enjoy the golden nuggets we extracted out of our conversation below:

“What is the biggest mistake you see business owners making today, and what is your advice on how to prevent our readers from making the same mistake?”

The biggest mistakes I see business owners making today is when it comes to social media, hiring the right talent, and technology. Almost every company I’ve ever come across, whether client or a big brand name like Best Buy, Sears, or even Dell, I notice they have all not placed their Facebook pixel or even set up their Google Analytics correctly to make informed decisions, yet they’re spending millions of dollars a year marketing on these social platforms.

I’ve never seen such a waste of revenue, because even the slightest change to the way they integrate those two elements of their digital marketing strategy, would save them millions in annual spend.

It may sound crazy, but what almost every business owner including Fortune500 business owners and CMOs do not know, is that a growing majority of traffic coming through popular ad networks is bot traffic.

It’s why Facebook was sued a few years ago when a questionable amount of traffic was thought to be bot traffic, and why Google just issued a refund to advertisers.

cost of ad fraud 2017

In fact, bot traffic has become such an issue that by 2025 it’s expected to cost advertisers $50BN USD, which I can send you a link to later, and by the simple fact that these major companies aren’t implementing policies to protect against bot traffic, is tell tale that companies are in desperate need of outside consultants to help educate and help them understand the landscape and risks of marketing in the digital age.

Small tweaks, have saved my clients millions of dollars on ad spend, whether it was in the form of implementing services like Siphon to block and potentially get rebates on that bot traffic or simply delaying their tracking pixels to avoid click jackers, bots, and other nefarious traffic sources from being lumped into retargeting campaigns, and increasing CPAs (cost per action). It’s a 10 minute fix, that has a profound effect, but nobody is doing it!

get refund on facebook bot traffic

Analytics showing bot traffic detected by Siphon on a Facebook™ ads campaign

“Every day we see increasing amounts of click fraud coming into our client’s websites, with some clients seeing as little as 8% with their AdWords or up to 40% on Facebook campaigns. This problem is only getting worse and anyone who doesn’t make the effort to stop it on their accounts is throwing money away. “

– Richard Seppala (CEO of Siphon)

how to get refund from bot traffic on google ads

Analytics showing bot traffic detected by Siphon on a Google Adwords™ campaign

As for anyone reading this who is looking into marketing online, the biggest piece of advice I can give you is that you need to be diligent and learn how to read and interpret data. Everything moves a lot quicker in the digital world than it does in the real world, one day you could be at the top of page one on Google or getting a 20x return on ad spend, and the next day an update can come out that wipes away your profits and offsets your quarterly projections. A year in the real world is like four years or seven years on the internet, staying stagnant and not adapting to new marketing practices is dangerous, and in the coming years we’ll see a lot of the big name brands get disrupted if they don’t adapt before another more agile competitor essentially takes their lunch.

“Wow! That was a lot of advice jumbled into one answer, so if I am understanding you right, advertisers are paying more because of bot traffic and they aren’t even aware of it? Or even how to fix it?”

Yes, and I actually have posted about the subject a few times on social media as well as fixes on how to prevent bot traffic from eating away at your margins. One of the biggest discoveries I made recently is when I ran “Engagement” based ads on Facebook vs “Traffic” based ads, and saw a huge disparity between the number of clicks that were being reported and the number of clicks that were being counted by Google Analytics and other 3rd party platforms.

Now I totally understand that there will always be some percentage of drop off, because of people becoming impatient due to load time, and that every analytics platform counts viewers differently, however all things considered when I ran a split test between the two ad types and the number of clicks reported, I saw a much greater disparity in the number of clicks reported by “Traffic” based ads, than I did with “Engagement” based ads, and I’m not talking a few percentage points, I’m talking upwards of 20%, and when I shared my findings, I was turned onto Siphon and other services that have sprung up in the industry that track bot traffic and are accredited for helping customers receive refunds from major ad networks like Facebook and Google and can issue copies of your traffic logs that you can then hand over to your ad network and receive a refund on that malicious traffic.

“Woah! So you can get a refund on your ad traffic?”

Yeah a certain percentage of it, but I would highly recommend companies implement best practices and try to prevent the malicious traffic in the first place.

“That makes sense, it’s better to prevent it than ask for a refund. So what other mistakes have you seen business owners making?”

Honestly, there is a pretty long list of things, but the main thing that businesses hire me for that has been possibly the biggest pain point, would have to be customer experience and follow up on cart abandonment.

So let’s say there is an e-com store that is doing around $10M a year, based on the universal industry average that 2 out of every 3 people abandon their cart, there will be around $20M in cart abandonment. That is an incredible amount of money, and those are not cold leads either, they are warm, they have already been to your site, experienced your brand, and yet when I ask most company owners and CMOs where their marketing dollars are being spent, it’s not on converting this low hanging fruit, it’s on bringing in more hard earned, cold leads.

It is a little insane to me, but hopefully that trend will start to shift as companies continue to adapt with consumer trends, and improve end to end customer experience.

“Interesting, so is that what you do, or what exactly is it that you do?”

I have worn a lot of hats, but most notably I am known as a CRO (conversion rate optimization) specialist. So for example, I’ll come into an e-com or SaaS business that is doing $10M a year in sales, that has $20M in cart abandonment like I mentioned previously, and I’ll use a handful of strategies to recoup around 30% or $6M of those abandoned sales. That is what I am mainly hired for these days, but on the other hand, I can also come in and optimize a site from a technical level so that it ranks significantly higher on Google and other search engines, like I did for Addicted2Success.

It really depends on what the client needs, but mostly companies hire me to recover abandoned cart sales, and put more points on the board to make investors happy. Recently however, I’ve been hired directly by investment groups to speed up their return on investment in the companies they’ve invested in by auditing their portfolios, launching growth hacking campaigns, and implementing the marketing strategies I have bulletproofed across several industries.

Often times, the difference between profitability and ending the year on a deficit could be as simple as implementing a bot filter like I mentioned above, tweaking your site structure to index better on Google, or implementing a solid cart abandonment strategy. If you have ever read Think & Grow Rich and the chapter about being 3 feet from gold, that is where most of the businesses are at when they approach me, I help them achieve those last 3 feet by shifting, optimizing, and re-aligning their marketing efforts.

“That is a really interesting perspective, I myself am a huge fan of Think & Grow Rich and I couldn’t agree with you more a lot of businesses often are on the edge of greatness and may need that fresh pair of eyes and outside perspective or consultant like you to help them achieve it. So all of this is really amazing, and I am glad to make the following announcement, but before I do, where can our readers follow or get in touch with you if they want to learn more about marketing and about what you do?”

The easiest way to follow me would frankly be on Facebook via my personal profile and for anyone interested in learning more about marketing and the strategies I implement for my clients, then joining my strategic marketing group will give you the greatest insight. I cover everything from paid advertising to SEO to social media hacks I use on client campaigns, and every other week I jump in and do a one hour live Q&A where you can ask me anything about marketing or about how to solve a problem you’re experiencing in your business. It’s something of a side project of mine, and although I could charge significantly more for the information I share, I wanted to make it expensive enough for people to pay attention and take action on the content, but low enough for any small businesses, startup, or business professional to be able to afford it.

“That’s a great way to give back, so I guess that leaves us with the big announcement you’ve all been waiting for…”

After working with Joseph and seeing his work ethic and simple dedication to the craft, we are excited to announce that we have brought him in as a permanent partner here at Addicted2Success!

So to all of our followers here at Addicted2Success, please give Joseph Lazukin a warm welcome to our A2S family! We look forward to the growth and expansion of A2S under his direction and the lives we will touch as we continue to grow the world’s #1 site for motivation and inspiration!

I am the the Founder of Addicted2Success.com and I am so grateful you're here to be part of this awesome community. I love connecting with people who have a passion for Entrepreneurship, Self Development & Achieving Success. I started this website with the intention of educating and inspiring likeminded people to always strive for success no matter what their circumstances. I'm proud to say through my podcast and through this website we have impacted over 100 million lives in the last 6 and a half years.

15 Comments

15 Comments

  1. Shrika

    Jun 15, 2016 at 11:00 pm

    All the points are very motivating, to me points three and seven are the most important aspects. Thank you for sharing.

  2. Nino Fisher

    May 18, 2016 at 1:58 am

    I’m just starting out. I constantly have emotional waves going through my gut. I get scared to
    touch a paper with my pan. I know that I just have to do it but my mind is constantly telling me, go ask more questions, go find more info to make sure you are doing the right thing.
    It’s easy to get distracted from doing your project with all this thoughts and emotions going on inside you.
    I try hard to focus on the end result, on where I want to see myself after realizing my dream, that helps me to make baby steps forward. I am new to all this, I’ve never owned a business. It takes guts, courage to take a risk building a business.
    I decided to be courageous and take risks until I will see the end result I so desire to see.
    I’ll keep my focus on what’s important and try hard to ignore distractive thoughts and emotions.

  3. Diane Hays

    Apr 15, 2016 at 2:19 pm

    Wow this is empowering!!! Thank you so much! I wanted to comment and connect with you and tell you I’m thinking of reinventing my brand and starting a blog and this was just the little push I needed to stay on my path and start moving forward and stop being scared and holding myself back! Im kind of an introvert sometimes about my work because being an artist its venerable sharing what you make with the world and its opinions. This is my year to push though and take my business to the next level! Thank you so much! If you have any advice for my blog please feel free to connect with me on social media and email me your thoughts I would love to hear from you!
    Diane Hays

  4. Nihar Pradhan

    Jan 18, 2016 at 6:58 am

    Beautifully written Prerna, very crisp and indeed insightful thoughts. One thing that really changed me as an entrepreneur is being with people who have done it and seen it, people who are successful and people who are good at heart. It rubs on you. It changes your thinking. Yes, ultimately it is the gratitude in attitude that makes all the difference, success is incidental but gratitude and grace should be integral to our nature…

  5. Maxine Harris

    Jan 16, 2016 at 7:21 am

    Thank you so much for the tips! I am a full time mom and freelance web designer. To make it through, it is important to remember why I chose this route: to be more involved in life and family, and to make use of the flexibility for the greater good.

  6. Jim LaValley

    Jan 13, 2016 at 3:57 pm

    All great suggestions! I think that keeping your “WHY” right in front of you is spot on and that staying positive is a must. Thanks for the article.

  7. Jess | Make and Do Crew

    Jan 12, 2016 at 6:38 am

    Staying focused on your WHY is so important! I am trying to do more things that scare me this year. It’s sort of my little experiment. Like, if I tackle anything I’m scared of, what will happen? Only 2016 knows… 🙂

    Thanks for the inspiring read!

  8. Shruti

    Jan 12, 2016 at 5:06 am

    Love your tips Prerna! as a newbie entrepreneur, I am going through this phase and your tips are bang on! esp #1. I couldn’t have done it if I didn’t have my band of fellow entrepreneurs cheering me on. & #4 is what is really helping me stay motivated.

    • Prerna Malik

      Jan 12, 2016 at 6:36 am

      Thanks so much Shruti! SO glad these tips resonated with you and awesome to see you putting them in action too!! Go YOU!

  9. Darci

    Jan 12, 2016 at 2:50 am

    I so needed to read this today. Being a new entrepreneur can be a lonely road,and I needed to be reminded of these tips. Thank you so much Prerna!

    • Prerna Malik

      Jan 12, 2016 at 6:35 am

      You’re most welcome Darci! SO glad this came at the perfect time for you!! Much love!

  10. Prerna Malik

    Jan 12, 2016 at 2:12 am

    Thanks Charlene! You’re absolutely right. Motivation is fueled by motivation.. Excited about your week and your year!! All the best!!

  11. Stephen osoko

    Jan 12, 2016 at 12:30 am

    I’m starting to surround myself with people who get it to take our dreams to the next level!

    • Prerna Malik

      Jan 12, 2016 at 1:52 am

      Hi Stephen! THAT is awesome! It is amazing to be inspired and encouraged as well as kept focused by those around us! All the very best for the road ahead!

  12. Charlene Rhinehart

    Jan 11, 2016 at 4:45 pm

    Great tips! As an entrepreneur, you have to surround yourself around like-minded individuals in order to keep your dream alive when you are faced with insurmountable obstacles. I also like your reminder about connecting with the outside world. It’s so easy to get caught up in work that we forget about everything else. Last but not least, I thank you for sharing your bold call to action in tip #7. Motivation FEEDS on Motivation. Sometimes you have to get the adrenaline pumping and DARE yourself to take insanely BOLD actions that will catapult your success. This is exactly what I plan to do this week! Thanks Prerna!

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Entrepreneurs

7 Days to Success: a Weekly Ritual to Become a Successful Entrepreneur

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We’ve often said there is no exact formula for success. While that’s true, there are some definite steps you can take to move your business in the right direction. If we could put this into some orderly sequence and create a system to follow every day, wouldn’t it be nice?

We brainstormed some ideas and here’s what we came up with. We’re not saying that these seven things are the only things you should do, but if you try one per day for seven days, you might be able to create new habits faster than you think!

Sunday: Planning day

Rest and plan. When things are quieter, take some time on Sunday afternoon to reflect on what you did the week before. After this, brainstorm some “mini-goals” you’d like to see accomplished in the coming week. Don’t try to plan too much at once, just think of the tasks that are the most productive and focus on those primarily. Always “plan in analog” and write them on a yellow legal pad or white paper so you can feel free to mess up and scratch out various ideas without limits. Lastly, “weed your garden” and transfer the best ideas to your “to do” list for the week.

Monday: Implement

Once you have the main ideas you plan to implement, plan the most important ones into your work week. You can spread the tasks out over the various days of the week or do three or four in one week. Focus on the most productive tasks you think will bring in the most revenue and save the others for when you have more time. Write up to six things on your “to do” list that you think you can achieve for each day.

Tuesday: Get up earlier

Though I am a night owl myself, I’ve learned that I can gain much more momentum if I get up earlier in the day and do a couple of important things before the day gets started. This idea has been shared by others in the past in the form of books that recommend that you get five things done before 11am and other similar ideas. We’re not saying that you have to do any certain number of tasks before 11. Rather, it just means you can use the early morning hours to achieve as much as possible to jumpstart your day. This technique may make you feel more productive and inspire you to keep working later to achieve even more.

“One key to success is to have lunch at the time of day most people have breakfast.” – Robert Brault

Wednesday: Focus on branding

Marketing is one of the most challenging things a business owner has to do to get their brand noticed. Yet, many often miss the mark because branding is more important than marketing. Despite what you might think, they are not the same. Marketing is focusing on products and services. Branding is focusing on your business and how it helps people to reach their personal goals. When you focus on branding, you are working on integrating all of the aspects of your marketing plan into one solid strategy which will place your brand in front of more people through multiple platforms and channels.

Thursday: Innovate and create

If you are a product-oriented business, Thursday is a good day to focus on innovation. Maybe you have your “creative team meetings” at another time, and that’s fine. Nonetheless, spend some time thinking about the innovative side of your business and write down some ideas for your next project. Get inspired and think about what Steve Jobs meant when he told his staff, “We’re going to pretend the universe.”

Friday: Evaluate and revamp

It has been said that “a life unexamined is not worth living,” but a business that is not measured is not worth having either. Take one day a week to evaluate how you are doing. Look back at your metrics, your ROI, and your sales on Friday and see how it compares to the week before or the month before and think about where you want to be in the next six months or year.

“Don’t lower your expectations to meet your performance. Raise your level of performance to meet your expectations. Expect the best of yourself, and then do what is necessary to make it a reality.” – Ralph Marston

Saturday: Do something fun

Yes, even obsessed entrepreneurs need a little downtime. Otherwise, what are you doing this thing called entrepreneurship for? Taking a little time for yourself and doing something you love like painting, birdwatching or photography can renew your mind and spirit and get you ready for a new week. Do anything you enjoy that is helpful for recharging your batteries. Get into meditation or check out the Calm app. It can rejuvenate your mind and spirit leading to your ultimate success.

We hope these tips will help you do something each day to move closer to your goals. It’s not so important when you do them, as long as you consider these important areas of your business growth and implement, plan, and evaluate as you go. You’ll do it, one day at a time!

How do you structure your days in order to win the week? Please comment below with some tips!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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Entrepreneurs

5 Things Entrepreneurs Need to Do to Stay Motivated

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Being an entrepreneur is the American dream. It’s all about defining your success, paving your way, and living life the way you want. Many of us walked out of a comfortable job because we no longer wanted to be rats in the maze of an employer who manipulated us into fueling their dream. We wanted to create and follow our dreams. But sometimes there are days when you can’t seem to find the motivation to move forward, and that’s when you need a little boost in thinking.

One thing to remember is that there is no “magic solution” for success as a business owner. Every entrepreneur must find their way to create, manufacture, produce, and sell their products, services, and ideas. The way that you find yourself doing this may not be as unique as the concept you have for your business. That’s okay, as long as it works for you and creates the result you want..

As entrepreneurs, we are in a constant state of “flux.” We must always be evaluating, analyzing, and measuring our metrics and our success. We are often in competition with others, but we are always in competition with ourselves. We should always strive to be a better version of ourselves and our business than we were yesterday.

Every successful entrepreneur will tell you that the “daily grind” is what results in wealth and success. The dream is the glamorous part as it’s what keeps you looking toward your goals and keeps you working hard.

Nonetheless, for those days that the daily grind seems hard and your energy wanes, try these 5 tips to stay motivated:

1. Remember the goal and keep your eye on the ball

I like Mark Cuban’s analogy of entrepreneurship being like the game of basketball. In his book, How to Win in the Sport of Business, he points out that having a business is like winning a basketball game. You must always be watching what your competition is doing while keeping your motivation high. Keep your eye on the goal.

2. Do something every day that moves you forward

One of the frustrations of entrepreneurs is that they feel like they are not moving their business forward fast enough. Remember Rome wasn’t built in a day. So just make sure you’re at least doing one thing daily that moves you closer to your goals. It will give you a feeling of accomplishment when the going gets tough.

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.” – Albert Einstein

3. Write down no more than six things to do each day

People sometimes overwhelm themselves by planning too many things to do in one day, and then they feel let down when they don’t get them done. If you limit your primary goals to six things per day, you are going to be more likely to achieve them.

4. Connect with other entrepreneurs and learn their tricks

This is not to say that you need to copy what others are doing, but simply get a sense for what keeps them going and motivated and share ideas. It can help you feel like you’re on the right track with support from others like you with similar goals.

5. Think of yourself as a captain

You are the captain of your ship. You’ll come across crashing waves, massive storms, rocks, and iceberg, but the way you maneuver around them will determine your fate. Always keep your eyes on the harbor and take pride in the fact that you’re in the top 2% of the country by sailing out on your own as an independent business owner.

“If you’re serious about changing your life, you’ll find a way. If you’re not, you’ll find an excuse.” – Jen Sincero

A few other things to take with you on your journey

As an entrepreneur, the goal is what you’re working for, day-by-day, week-by-week because you’ll get there a little at a time. It’s about more than the goal because it’s about the journey. Life is a journey and so is entrepreneurship. The challenges we face as entrepreneurs only serve to make us stronger and better able to handle the storms we face on the sea of entrepreneurship.

Remember the payoff is incredible! It’s the biggest gamble of your life but when it pays off, it pays off huge! Remember the movie, “The Perfect Storm,” starring Richard Gere? He talked about being a swordboat captain and about how few people choose that life, yet the ones who did loved it. They enjoyed the solitude, embraced the challenge and it’s what kept them going.

How do you stay motivated on a daily basis? Let us know by commenting below!

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Entrepreneurs

You Have To Have A Side Hustle (Like Me With My Blogging) – Here’s Why

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This whole blogging thing you see me do is my side hustle.

It’s what I do when I get home from work.
It’s what I do when you’re at the pub with mates on the weekend.
It’s what I do when you’re watching House Of Cards.

Blogging is my side hustle because it’s what has transformed my life and what fills me with passion.
Blogging is my happy place and it’s how I serve the world.

Now many of you reading this have zero side hustle. You’re not passing go and collecting the $200 that comes with doing a side hustle daily. You’re missing out on everything that can come with building something for yourself.

I’m going to get to the point quickly. Here’s why you need a side hustle:

 

You’ll be stuck in your dead-end job forever.

Yes, what I just said is harsh. I said it because it’s true. You’ll never escape that job you hate and that pain in the ass boss that sucks all of your energy away unless you get a side hustle.

Start with what you like doing and then design a side hustle around it. Ensure that at least one action is taken every day. Then, let that momentum build into a side hustle.

Once you have momentum, the aim of the game is to let the side hustle take over from that dead-end job that makes you feel like crap.

 

You’ll never get to travel.

The world is such an amazing place (cliché I know).
There’s no point the world being beautiful and you hearing that cliché if you never get to enjoy it.

A side hustle is what you’ll eventually monetize so that you can work less and play more (i.e. travel).

Travel is one of the biggest regrets of those who are dying. You’ll never get to check back into planet Earth again so you may as well travel while you can.

Build that startup. Launch that website. Record that video. Or, in my case, write that blog post that inspires.

 

You’ll miss those family moments.

A side hustle is designed to give you time and allow you to do more of what you love. That’s what blogging does for me and the same can happen for you.

“Being consumed by a job you hate, so you can earn just enough to survive, so you can impress your boss and people you don’t care about, is the definition of failure”

I believe you can spend more time with your family. I believe you should feel inspired every day and do something that makes you happy. I believe that family is one of the few things in life that we’re destined to cherish.

Okay, that last line was a bit soppy for a bloke but who gives a rat’s – it’s true.

 

You’ll never get to experience the art of fulfillment.

Blogging gives me a sense of fulfillment. I feel like I have done something that matters to me and that matters to the world. If you don’t go and get a side hustle, you’ll never experience what it’s like to be fulfilled.

Being fulfilled makes you feel like the glass is always half full instead of half empty, or worse yet, looking at the glass as empty with a crack in the bottom that was caused by everyone else.

When you feel fulfilled, you find yourself wanting to do things for others. You find giving easier, you want to be a mentor, you want to perform charitable acts, and all round, life is good.

I want you to feel life is good too. That’s why I want you to get a side hustle amigo!

 

***Parting advice***

Oops….I nearly thought that headline read “parenting advice.” Now that would suck because I have no idea about that…haha

No one said this whole side hustle would be easy. You will need to work hard and you’ll have to take action. You may even need to do some soul searching and that’s fine too. My point is that you need to stop delaying and begin building something. The whole construction process I find is better than when you’ve built your side hustle.

It feels good to be in control and to serve others with your side hustle. I want that feeling for you too.

Go out and start your side hustle.

If you want to increase your productivity and learn some more valuable life hacks, then join my private mailing list on timdenning.net

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Entrepreneurs

These 3 Warning Signs Predict Your About to Make a Big Business Mistake

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“Honesty is the fastest way to prevent a mistake from turning into a failure.” James Altucher said this, the multiple bestselling author, and a man who has failed (and overcome failure) more than most. The truth is, mistakes hurt.

Whether it’s your mistake or somebody else’s, it stirs all sorts of fears and worries within you. You start to question yourself. You wonder what will happen next, and what the worst case scenario may look like. Mistakes are NOT fun, but mistakes also play an important role in your growth and success. For as Albert Einstein once said, “a person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.”

So assuming you don’t wish to play it safe your entire life, you must accept mistakes happen. Some mistakes are unavoidable; there to test and teach us. But what if I told you many of your mistakes were avoidable, and by looking in the right places you could spot them before they happen?

Most mistakes begin small; tiny little things that barely register in your day. But because you pretend they don’t happen, disregard them, or make poor decisions on the back of them, these little mistakes grow into big mistakes, which in turn develop into life-altering failure.

Certain mistakes are thrust upon you, and you cannot do much to avoid them. Yet many begin slowly, and by keeping your eyes open you can spot them before they happen. So if you notice any of the following, take note for a mistake may be near.

1. You Become Complacent

One of the biggest warning signs of all is when you grow complacent. You may enjoy the idea of an ‘easy life’, but the truth is you need a challenge. When it comes to growing a successful business, this is never more true. You need to remain motivated. Like a shark, you can never stop moving.

Such complacency lead to Thomas Frank’s biggest mistake of all. As he built ‘College Info Geek’ while still at university, he was always busy. Between studying, blogging, and marketing, he had little time to spare. So as his site grew, he decided to cut back on his studies and take fewer classes. This made sense, as more time spent on his business meant more chance of success. Yet with this extra unstructured time on his hands, Thomas grew complacent.

Instead of growing, his business plateaued. He didn’t feel as motivated, and it wasn’t until he got this motivation back that ‘College Info Geek’ continued its growth.

“If you look around, complacency is the great disease of your autumn years, and I work hard to prevent that.” – Nick Cave

2. You Get Stuck in your Own Head

Although you may surround yourself with people all day, this entrepreneurial roller coaster is a lonely ride. It’s easy to get stuck in your own head, as you work on your ideas, your plans, and your growth. You become so fixated on your work that you shut yourself off to the rest of the world. You become blind to opportunity, mistakes, and everything else.

Take John Corcoran, the co-founder of Rise 25, and a man who has built his career around connecting with influential people. Despite building a successful career in politics, entertainment, and the tech scene, John desired more. He started his own practice, and got to work on his own version of the American Dream.

He worked so hard that he went months without networking and creating new connections. All those relationships he had built during his successful career slipped by the wayside. He condemned himself to a lonely entrepreneurial existence, and had little to show for it.

Sure, he was busy, but did he grow? No! John got stuck in his own head, and it lead to what he described as his biggest business mistake of all. This entrepreneurial rollercoaster is lonely enough as it is, so don’t make matters worse by getting stuck in your own head.

3. You’re Surrounded By “Yes Men”

“Yes” is a dangerous word. If all you say is yes, you’re sure to drown under work, responsibility, and commitment. Yet it isn’t only when you say yes that issues arise, because when you’re surrounded by a bunch of “yes men”, mistakes are often close. Scott Oldford experienced this as he became a well known “web guy” at a young age.

During a period when most of us plucked up the courage to ask that girl or guy to the dance, Scott made large sums of money and won prestigious awards. He had everything a teenager could want, including a group of people who told him what he wanted to hear.

Scott soon lost everything he built, as he began to believe his own hype. He had to start from scratch. Today, he’s doing fine, but only after he lost track of what matters. That’s what happens when you surround yourself with “yes” — it blinds you from what you need to see and hear.

“Say no to everything, so you can say yes to the one thing.” – Richie Norton

Of course, warning signs like these won’t vanish mistakes from your life. Some are unavoidable. Some provide invaluable lessons you need to experience for yourself. But the sooner you nip these mistakes in the bud, the easier you’ll find your road to success.

I learned this from speaking to those who have been there and done it; successful folk at the top of their game. Don’t wait until you make your own mistakes. Learn from those who have been there and done it. And while you do, keep your eyes open for these three big warning signs.

Share with us a mistake you made and how you overcame it! Let us know by commenting below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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