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It’s Time to Stop Chasing a False Image of Success

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Each person reading this will have a different idea about what accomplishing success involves. For some, you want to lose weight. For others, you desire to build a business that creates financial freedom. An excellent general definition could be becoming the best you in each major area of your life.

Whatever success means to you has probably been shaped and modeled over the years by the images you see of people in your sphere creating success for themselves. Social media has millions of daily users that are sharing information about their life and business. You see stories of success and what looks like impressive wins. It’s not uncommon for people to share a highlight reel without talking about the struggle on the path to accomplishing those wins.

Conceptually, we know that we don’t get to see the full picture when someone shares their wins, but seeing those images of what we feel is success feeds into our limiting beliefs. We get caught in the comparison trap even though we know better. The comparison cripples success-seekers. 

If you’re going to reach new growth levels and accomplish your goals, you’ll need to stop chasing a false image of what it takes to create success. Here’s why.

Vanity Influences the Creation of False Narratives

The Internet and social media have created a culture in which individuals can instantly get their ego fed. You post an accomplishment, and immediate praise follows. That ego hit is intoxicating and makes individuals want to experience it often. The vanity causes false narratives about what’s happening in someone’s life. 

If your image of success is this vanity-driven false narrative, you’re going to be the one left without a chair when the music stops. Your look into someone else’s success journey is a surface-level glance. You can’t base what you do and the decisions you make on the little bit you see.

It’s great to see success and be inspired by it. A smart strategy is when you see success and research the elements and steps that could help you — model success and use what you see from others as motivation. But, don’t let an incomplete narrative be your driving force towards your goals.

“Attitude drives actions. Actions drive results. Results drive lifestyles.” – Jim Rohn

Beware of Being Sold a Lifestyle 

In the day and age that we live in, entrepreneurs sell books, digital information products, consulting, and coaching. For some of these entrepreneurs, portraying a lifestyle of success is a marketing tactic. You’ve probably seen a social media ad in your feed from an entrepreneur advertising an appealing lifestyle that doesn’t require a lot of work.

You have to look at the motivation and reason behind images of success in others. If the success posters are trying to sell you on a lifestyle, it’s not likely you’ll get the full picture of their success — if it’s even real. Don’t fall for the flashy copy or good advertising. 

The reality is that you probably don’t need another course to understand your success path. You need more execution of what you already know, and you need to develop consistent healthy habits. Your intuition knows what you need. 

There is No Substitute for the Work 

Images of success can be an inspiration, but if success becomes a reality in your life, it will happen when you do the work. There is no substitute for mapping out your goals, taking daily action, and pushing through moments of challenge. The main image you should aspire to is a vision of you being consistent in doing the hard work to be your best you. 

Success is putting in the work and being motivated by the process. Success is experiencing setbacks and learning from them. You create success by understanding that it’s okay to want more from life and stop waiting for permission to step into your power. Success happens with healthy boundaries and enforcing them.

A false image of success has held you back for far too long. The image you should strive for is your vision of your dream life. Visualizing success is a powerful strategy that doesn’t involve what anyone else is doing.

Get clarity on what you want and get to work. Let the false images of success come and go. You know what you have to do — it’s time to work.

Lisa Collum is a CEO, author, educator, and mother of four with a remarkable history of working to change lives both inside and outside the classroom. She owns and operates two educational companies, Top Score Writing, Inc., and Coastal Middle and High School. She has 16 years of real-world experience helping women start and build businesses. Her focus is on helping women entrepreneurs create the strategy and tactics that consistently generate revenue, create financial security, and do it all with balance. Join her at lisacollum.com.

Success Advice

7 Ways to Share Your Story on Social Media

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Content marketing is “A type of marketing that involves the creation and sharing of online material (such as videos, blogs, and social media posts) that does not explicitly promote a brand but is intended to stimulate interest in its products or services”. In other words, explicit marketing is simply saying “buy my stuff!” whereas content marketing is the art of persuading people to do so through storytelling. (more…)

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10 Tips to Deal With Negativity While Starting a Business

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There are ups and downs in business but fearing failures can stop you from taking your first step towards excellence. With pandemic on tow, aspiring entrepreneurs feel a little stuck when ideating a business prospect. Here, we give you some actionable tips to deal with negativity while starting a business, even during situations like a pandemic. We also took the liberty to throw in some amazing book recommendations that’ll help you enjoy the process of being positive and achieving your business goals.

10 Tips to deal with negativity while starting a business in a pandemic

1. Get a mentor

The first thing to do as a new business owner is to find the right kind of mentor. That person could be someone in your industry or in general who you look up to. The guidance must be apt for your business, and it should be a mutual responsibility of sharing knowledge. 

2. Two big R’s – Routine and Refresh

Made a mess of something? Try to reboot the situation and make it work. Take a break once in a while and refresh yourself if you feel stuck or your ideas feel mundane. Plan a routine and stick to them – both personal and professional. Having a routine can increase productivity and engage in more activities apart from your pre-planned schedule. 

3. Inculcate problem-solving mentality

Do not panic once you are thrown a problem. Arrange a meeting with the respective party, listen to both sides of the stories, and make a decision that is more realistic and feasible. 

4. Hire half and half

Whenever you hire someone for your business. Make sure that half of the people contradict your ideas, and the other half have the same mindset as yours. The people who contradict can bring in more valuable points and their perspective might take the discussion to a whole new level.  Don’t take too much time finding the perfect one. Hire an apt person who can have the right attitude. 

5. Network, Network, and Network

Find like-minded people and mingle with them. Be more sportive in the learning process. Listen more and talk less – if you are a beginner. You can only be a constructive person who gives input to someone if you have listened to everyone’s point of view. If you feel down, your network might have something to uplift your mood and change your perspective on something. 

“Negativity, in general, is one of the things that holds people back, and you have to see what’s holding you back to get away from it.” – Lucy Dacus

6. Tech-savvy personnel

Learn a thing or two about the latest technology that you implement in your organization. Since the world revolves around technology, make sure your administrative authority knows as well.  

7. Don’t schedule a meeting, that could have been an email

Yes! I said it. Having unnecessary meetings will weaken the purpose of having a constructive discussion. Having back-to-back meetings drains the team members and yourself too. Always have a 10 to 15 minutes break between each meeting to feel refreshed and give your 100%. 

8. Have a pros and cons list

Always, I mean always have a pros and cons list. Let’s say one of your team members pitch an idea to improve the marketing strategies starting next month. Jot down the pros and cons before approving or rejecting it point-blank. It’s a systematic way of making a decision. 

9. Track your finances

Even if you have a team of accountants and auditors, make sure that you are present (both mentally and physically) – learn if you are not aware of it. Trusting your employees is a must, but not overseeing the records is a mistake that should be avoided. 

10. Remember your “why?”

At some point in your hectic schedule or not having ME time can get to you. During those tough times – ask yourself – “Why am I doing this?”. If you can answer this question with a valid explanation, you’ll feel energized. Because “A purpose drives you”. 

5 Best books to read to be more positive as an entrepreneur

Reading always puts me into perspective. Therefore, I took some liberty to give a sample of positivity and determination through words. 

These are the 5 books that’ll guide you to be a more positive and successful entrepreneur. 

  1. Attitude is everything by Jeff Keller – The decisions you make, the routine you set for yourself, and the affirmations you say to yourself every day are going to make a huge difference. If you feel tired, hopeless, and quitting – then this book is for you to boost you up!
  2. Mindset: The new psychology of success by Carol Dweck – You do what you think. In this book, the author talks about two mindsets: The growth mindset and the fixed mindset and what they’ll do to you respectively. She helps you recognize your mindset and change it for the better. 
  3. Innovator’s Dilemma by Clayton Christensen – This book is about technology uprisings all over the world and businesses that adopted and implemented technology in their firm. The author teaches you that just because your competitors and others are adopting something into their businesses doesn’t mean that you have to as well. Make an informed decision. 
  4. As A Man Thinketh by James Allen – This book specifically is about the power of thought and how it shapes your life into a more meaningful and fulfilling one.
  5. The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle – The author talks about how people always keep thinking about what the future holds but then forget to live and enjoy the present. And also helps us understand how to make decisions more efficiently based on the present. 

Working towards inner balance requires consistency and perseverance. So does hard and smart work. Being negative is a part of our lives. It’s important to channel it appropriately and make things happen despite the roller coaster ride that is our lives. Hope you overcome your fears and negativity to shine bigger and brighter. Cheers! 

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Defining Your Own Success: A Step by Step Guide

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Everyone wants success in their lives, but success can be defined in so many different ways that it can sometimes seem daunting. In this blog post, you will learn how to make success easier for yourself by defining what success means to you. (more…)

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5 Characteristics of Athletes You Need for Business Success

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Michigan State basketball coach, Tom Izzo, wrote “Players play. Tough players win.” I would add to that, “It’s tough to win.”I think if you, as a leader, are looking to build an organization that is successful – that wins – you first have to accept that it will be tough. There are no shortcuts to success. In my 44 years of coaching, I was fortunate to coach a lot of tough players. I believe the toughness I have seen in athletes corresponds well to any organization or business. (more…)

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