As women we tend to overthink things, we always question ourselves and self-doubt is like a second language to us.
There are a lot of cultural and genetical factors involved in this unjustified low self-esteem: the last centuries have not been easy for us and somehow the patriarchal, male chauvinist society has instilled self-doubt as a plague.
A pattern I’ve seen over and over again when working with women is the constant struggle to be perfect. Maybe you feel that this is what people expect from you, or maybe you are the one who is always striving for perfection, because deep inside you simply don’t love and accept yourself just the way you are.
Perfectionism is procrastination disguised and it’s not a good business partner, so you should give up this bad habit as soon as possible, and instead adopt one of Facebook’s famous mottos “Done is better than perfect”.
I know it’s not easy and this issue cannot be simplified, sometimes there is a great amount of inner work to do, either with a coach or with a psychologist, and sometimes you can overcome these obstacles by yourself, but we all need some guidance.
Here are 5 tips to start your business with the right mindset.
Find your purpose
Easier said than done, I know. This is the single most complicated thing to do, but the truth is that if you are connected with your purpose, your why, your mission, or however you want to call it, everything will be easier.
There will be hard times in your business, there will be times when you will want to give up because you will be physically tired, or mentally overwhelmed, or your finances won’t be at the level you were expecting. Your purpose will be the only thing that will keep you from giving up.
Purpose is usually the thing that makes you smile when you think about it, or makes you feel butterflies in your stomach, or whatever sensation you may feel in your body that you can associate with a pleasant, exciting emotion.
I am sure everybody knows, deep inside, what their purpose is. Unfortunately, we often get confused because we think that our purpose should be something huge like sending people to Mars, saving the planet or fighting famine.
Your purpose doesn’t have to change the world, although if your business is connected to your purpose, you will have an impact on other people’s life. It doesn’t have to be millions, if you have an impact on one person, it’s ok too.
I also suggest you look into the concept of Ikigai. It’s a Japanese concept that corresponds to the purpose and can be found as the intersection of what you love, what you are good at, what the world needs and what you can be paid for.
See if you can come up with the result yourself, otherwise, let me know if I can help you.
Create your business vision
This part should be fun, I mean really really fun. You should not think, and certainly not overthink.
You should feel like an architect designing a house, and simply dream of your ideal business and what you want to build.
What do you want to achieve in 1 year, 5 years and 10 years? How much money will you want to make with your business?
You can write your vision, in that case make sure you use the present tense: don’t write “In 10 years I want to…, I hope I will….” Write it as it’s already yours, this will help you be more convinced and also more committed. If you talk in future tense, your brain will be tricked into thinking that this is something far away in time and so it will be, so you will not really believe that you can achieve it.
You could also use a whiteboard and add photos, quotes, even perfumes, if there is a specific smell that makes you feel good. You should look at, smell and touch your vision board as much as possible.
You could also use a Pinterest board, where you could add photos of gorgeous offices, stunning holiday locations, dresses, places, whatever you can relate to your vision of a successful business.
Stop comparing yourself to other people
I can’t tell you how many times my clients and mentees have started a session by telling me “I am afraid to start because I see how amazing the others’ websites are. The others could be anyone in the specific niche of the person who is starting now and just sees how far other people have gone.
Don’t do that, don’t compare yourself to anyone: we are all struggling our personal battle and the person whom you think has a “perfect life” might look up to you and think exactly the same of your life.
Besides, comparing is just another self-sabotaging behavior that doesn’t help you.
Work with positive affirmations
Positive affirmations are often underestimated and sometimes criticized as not effective or useless. I used to think that, too, until I worked with a coach who specializes in Louise Hay’s method and I discovered the power of positive affirmations.
You are not supposed to say “I am a millionaire” and then spend your days on a sofa expecting your millions. It’s not the way they work, it’s not Harry Potter’s magic.
They work by replacing old beliefs that are not serving our higher purpose and are harming us. As my coach said, “If you spent 30 years of your life thinking that you were not enough, it’s not by repeating 1 affirmation once in a while that you are reaching your subconscious mind.”
That is why affirmations should be repeated constantly until they become natural and automatic.
Choose one or two powerful affirmations, if you want something specifically related to your business you could try with “I have a successful business”, “I am happy with the success of my business”.
You could work on perfectionism with affirmations such as “I am perfect just the way I am” and “I love myself just the way I am“. Repeat them hundred times per day, it doesn’t matter if you don’t believe in what you repeat, they will eventually become true for your subconscious and they will work.
For even stronger results, repeat them at the mirror, look yourself into your eyes and repeat these affirmations. And also record yourself repeating them and listen to them whenever you can during the day: your subconscious will believe to what you are saying.
Make planning fun
Planning should be fun. This is not the same as the vision, although your plan should generate from your vision.
Planning relates to the actions you do every day to reach the goals that you have envisioned.
It shouldn’t be like a crazy to-do-list where you assign dozens of tasks that you cannot possibly achieve in one day.
Instead, it should be a strategic planning of all the small steps you will have to perform every day to get closer to your vision.
For instance, if you want to organize a retreat in Tuscany in 3 years, you might start to sort out locations, prices, flights, houses, etc. If you want to move to Spain, you might consider studying Spanish, so you should look into language schools, apps and software, maybe look for a language exchange partner.
Create projects and tasks but don’t make it an overwhelming task list. Start planning and make sure you enjoy every part of it.
If you need help with any of these steps, reach out, I am here to support you!
Linguist and conversation designer, with a background of translator and content writer. An entrepreneur at heart, I founded and closed a virtual assistance agency and I’m now devoted 100% to conversation design.
I’m an empath, I’m passionate about communication and behavioral psychology. My greatest ambition is to contribute to improving the interaction between humans and computers so that machines can be at our service and make our life better.
If you need help with the design of your chatbot, just contact me!