March 22, 2023

Transcript Ep #191: Building a Business with Intention: How to Stay Focused and Avoid Distractions

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Transcript Ep #191: Building a Business with Intention: How to Stay Focused and Avoid Distractions

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Building a Business with Intention: How to Stay Focused and Avoid Distractions

– Transcript: Episode #191

1:16  

Well, hey, friends, welcome to today’s episode. I am so thrilled that you are here. At the time this episode is going live, we have just closed the doors for my new, Accelerator, The Signature Talk Accelerator. I’ve been talking about it for weeks, and oh my gosh, so fun. I am excited to do a debrief with you. We did, I don’t know, you’re a business owner so I know you’re gonna geek out over these things, so here goes.

1:49  

Let me sip my coffee, get ready for this. We did some new things on this launch. Not only did I repackage up a long standing program that I’ve been teaching for four years. I also tried something new with a private podcast, and if you participated in that maybe you’re one of the people who sent me messages., I got really good feedback from people. Part of what was people were just kind of curious of how this whole thing work? How are you going to have a private podcast? What you’re not doing webinars, like what’s going on? 

2:20  

I had a lot of biz friends, super curious about it. And many of you just in full ass appreciation, which thanks, around being able to listen to things on your own terms and that’s just really great and that’s honestly the reason why I created the private podcast. It is one of the reasons why I create a podcast like this every single week is because life is, I hate saying things are busy. I really hate using that terminology because we are in ownership of our own time. But there’s just a, when you’re a business owner, whether you’re a parent, a dog parent, you’re working full time while starting in your business, the reality is you probably have a lot of things going on and it’s sometimes hard to fit things in your schedule. 

2:22  

So I don’t know, I just love, I love being able to add personal development and include like business content and podcasts in that category. I like being able to fit it in these pockets of time that fit into my life, whether it’s literally I’ll turn on a podcast or video training in my phone. Spoiler, I talked about this many times. I wear hearing aids so I can stream pretty much anything into my hearing aids from my phone but I’ll do it while I’m cooking dinner. That is my favorite time to listen to podcasts and such my husband takes the kids. They go upstairs and have playtime while I make dinner, or if I’m unloading the dishwasher, or on a walk, or sometimes when I’m getting ready in the morning. Sometimes I take my phone into the shower. I don’t have my hearing aid so I had to like blast it up on full volume and then angle the speaker on the phone towards the tile on the side of the wall so like creates this amplified sound. These are things that you really didn’t even know about me. 

4:11  

But the point being is, you know, to continue on the path of starting a business, it’s really important that you are careful with who you allow into your ears, into your mind, what kind of ideas and the people that you surround yourself with. You already know this to be true. It impacts how you view yourself, how you view your progress, how you prioritize and create goals which is a big part of today’s discussion. But I just just want to encourage you, for one, thank you so much for participating, if you were one of the people that joined the Accelerator or just participate in the launch, for cheering me on on the sidelines. 

But I want to challenge you to start thinking about how are you creating content for your audience, right? You don’t have to have a podcast, you don’t have to do a secret podcast. We don’t have to be all fancy here but we do need to show up and really consider how we create experiences for our people. How do we make it easy for them to succeed? And that’s definitely a conversation I’ve been having a lot with myself over these last few months is how do I make it easier for you to win? How do I make education simpler? How do I make programs easier to consume? How do I make my podcast easier to listen to, more digestible? 

5:32  

All these questions are all centered from the ultimate, like client or customer experience. And I just really, that was on my heart today and I wanted to bring that up to you is that sometimes when we’re brainstorming in our businesses, we start brainstorming because we see other people doing things, and we’re like, ooh, that’s cool, I should try that, or we can’t help but create so many freaking ideas all the time. I don’t know about you but I’m like an idea motherfreakin machine. And what really helps me is when I pause and say, okay, let’s come at it from the other perspective, how is this going to serve? How is this going to serve you better? And that becomes the best filtering mechanism because it helps me prioritize projects, it helps me simplify ideas. Let’s be honest, you and me, sometimes we can make shit real complicated but running through that filter. 

6:22  

So anyways, that was on my heart today. But honestly, that really ties into the topic of today’s episode so freaking beautifully. Building a business with intention, doing anything with intention. It’s kind of my freaking jam, the word intention. If I were to pick two words, that really summarized my approach towards business in life, the two words that always seem to come up are intention and context. I won’t go down like the side rabbit hole around why context, we can cover that another time. But being intentional, being purposeful, that is just ingrained in how I operate and I believe it’s a huge reason of why I’ve continued to not just be successful, but feel good in pursuit of my success and I really want to hammer in that thing, that feeling good peace,. It comes with it. 

7:19  

So today, we’re going to talk about how to stay focused, how to avoid distractions, and make sure that as you’re building this business that you’re working on, whether you’re still in that form where you’re trying to get your idea out in the world, right? Maybe you’re still working on okay, what is my unique angle? What is that thing I want to be known for? What is that product or program that I want to sell? If you’re in those very early stages, you really, really pay attention today. But also, if you have a business, if you’ve been running things for a while, maybe you have something’s been selling, and you’re going, yeah, yeah, I’m like, I’m in growth mode, I’m in scaling mode, whatever mode you want to classify. I really want to challenge you today to think about being intentional of how you’re operating. 

8:01  

Today is about intention but it’s also one of the big reasons why I wanted to record this specific episode is I started noticing something lately in my conversations. And it’s something just as simple when I come across people who’ve been following my work, specifically people from what I’ll say my old world, back in corporate, whether I’m trying to get back into LinkedIn. So I’m direct messaging people on LinkedIn which by the way, can we talk later about how annoying LinkedIn etiquette is? I don’t know if this is just me, but I am so freaking, like, what in the hell? Somebody connects you, right? They connect with you. They’re like, hey, I want to reach out and then they blast the crap out of you and it’s like sales page style, like messages. It is frickin aggressive. Is just that normal, best practices on LinkedIn, because I am not here for it? And I like to unfriend people on LinkedIn, unconnect. I don’t know what the term is. I am just not fluent in LinkedIn. It probably, maybe not. I don’t know if I need to go down that rabbit hole.

The underlying belief of the “I’m too busy” mindset

9:09  

Anyways, to having conversations with people. That’s what this came back to. I’ve been chatting with people, catching up with people and even some of my students and clients from my programs, if I direct message with them, there’s this tendency for people to say, I know you’re so busy and then they feel guilty for asking me a question, or I know you’re so busy, but or oh my gosh, you’re just so frickin busy. And I keep hearing that term, busy. Heather, you’re so busy. Heather, you have so much going on, like Oh, and whether it’s in context of someone reaching out for me for a question, or they’re trying to be like aware and acknowledge my schedule if I’m doing like a podcast interview or we’re just emailing back and forth whatever the context, right? It doesn’t really matter. But I just keep hearing this phrase, Oh, Heather, you’re so busy and it really got me, it kind of stopped me in my tracks. 

I get this all the time. I’m sure you to a degree get this too, right? This is kind of like a normal part of our human language, especially here in America. You see someone you haven’t seen in a while Oh, hey, hey there, how you doing? I’m doing great, you know, just really busy. It’s like the automated response that we all just assume that we’re all busy. Everyone is busy. That is the thing. 

10:31  

And I don’t know about you but it feels awkward sometimes if somebody says, Hey, how’s it going? If I were to respond in a oh my gosh, things are awesome, like, I’m loving my life, being in business is going great. I don’t like, I have this weird, I don’t think it’s just how I have like my brain has worked and how I’ve been raised and all of my beliefs and we can get to this hedgehog, but I feel kind of bad or guilty not saying life is busy or crazy or, oh, no, just trying to figure it out. I don’t know if you resonate with that, too. But do you notice that like that automated response from everyone? It’s just like, Oh, it’s so busy. Oh, it’s so negative. And I’ve been trying to catch myself in this a lot, especially in the last few years but I’m highly aware of this right now because of this. 

11:18  

I’ve been very vocal over the last few weeks, few months around the changes in my business. Last year has been a whirlwind, right? Last year, we started the Speaker Co. I brought on a business partner. We build things from scratch, but not right. I’d already had the existing online education business, but we were pivoted under a new brand. We were like build, build, build. We did a retreat, we launched a program. Then came to the first of the year and I announced a couple months ago that we were ending that partnership and I was moving forward with the company. There is a lot and I’ve been talking about a lot but here’s what’s interesting. 

11:54  

The last few weeks, especially this year, so far, I don’t work a lot. This is what’s fascinating. I don’t work a lot. And granted what is a lot mean, I just really along the, I don’t know there’s probably a large spectrum to it. But for me, I don’t start my workday typically until 10 o’clock. I also end my workday, somewhere between two and four, depending on the day. Now you might be thinking whether that’s 24 to 30 something hours a week, which seems like a lot or little some weeks. I mean, some days I only work a couple hours. I also will take days off here and there. Why am I telling you all this? It’s just interesting to me that the perception is I’m busy. I have a lot of things going on. But the reality in my world is yeah, there there is a lot of things going on. Hello, friend. I’ve been in launch mode for the last six weeks but I don’t feel busy. I don’t feel busy and it’s because I am so freaking clear around what I need to work on, what I don’t need to work on, how I want to feel throughout the day, and really at the at the end of the day, what actually matters. 

13:18  

Now, does this mean that I’m fully present all the time for my kids and my husband? No, we’ve had many, I think we ate cereal two nights over the last week because I did have to jump online and there have been the seasons of hustle, which you know, is the whole nature of the show. There are seasons of hustle and seasons of rest and right now I’m building that balance between both. So yeah, there is some hustle happening. But I’m not like, I’m not a workhorse. I am not like burning it all the freaking time. I am, one, unwilling to do that and, two, it’s not necessary for my business model. 

13:55  

So the reason why I want to bring this up today is in case you have this like underlying belief and just this automated thought process that you have to be busy in order to be successful. And I know logically saying that out, I know, you know that that isn’t true. But still, if you’re filling your calendar with stuff or maybe you do one of those things. I used to do this where you have a task on your list and it really should only take you a short amount of time, but it takes you like all freaking day or it goes on your list and you don’t get it done for weeks. 

Friend, I need you to listen because what we’re going to talk about today is a very similar conversation that I’ve been having a lot with my private one on one clients. It’s I have some very simple, I mean mantras that I always come back to and I don’t mean mantras as like affirmations to put on a post it and put in mirror but core philosophies that I’ve been like embedded into how I work and I want to share this with you. This is not a productivity episode. This is not about like, here’s some hacks to do things. 

15:05  

What I really want to address today is the, I hate the word mindset, because it’s really overused, but essentially our attitude around our businesses and what it really requires, and this yin and yang between the influence other people have on how you operate in your business, whether you’re aware of it or not. So there’s a couple previous podcast episodes that I looked up in my archive that I was like, Oh, damn, that was a good episode. 

I have a couple of related episodes that if today, if you’re going, Oh, I needed this in my life right now, Heather, like you’re speaking straight into my soul. I’d like, I made this episode just for you. Shoot me a direct message always on Instagram and tell me when I like when there’s an episode that really lands for you, tell me, tell me. Even better if you know someone who could really benefit, take a screenshot, tag me in the stories. If you don’t share it on social, that’s fine. Text a friend about it, like the word of mouth for my podcast and just my client base, that’s how I built my business is y’all go crazy and you tell your friends, and I’m just so appreciative. 

16:13  

But there’s two episodes specifically, I’m going to link to both of them in the show notes that really will be a great follow up for this. One of them is around mimicking your mentors, Episode 108. The other one is five questions to halt shiny object syndrome, Episode 53. That one as a way back, an oldie but a goodie. But these here, those are really going to be helpful. There might be some other episodes I might think of after recording this that will link into, but you can grab all of that in the show notes and I hope this serves you here today. 

16:45  

So okay, so let’s talk about the challenge that you face in your business right now. We all face here. What’s interesting is in this online business building world, and what I mean by that is you’re building some kind of brand online, whether using your personal brand or you have a company brand. I’m in this weird like yin and yang, where now I have both I have my Heather Sager brand and I have the Speaker Co and I’m navigating showing up with that but the point is, is we build these businesses in public. 

There is literally a website that anyone can access or social media is out there. A lot of times we’re building content that is out there and very public and we’re putting stuff out there and we’re seeing other people’s stuff out there, and the lines between what’s going on in someone’s business, it becomes very blurry. And I know you know, logically that just because you see things online does not mean it’s the full story. But for some reason in our brains, it’s very, very hard not to compare what’s happening backstage in our businesses to what we see on stage for other people. 

17:52  

I’m gonna say that again, it’s very, very, very difficult for us not to compare what’s happening backstage in our business to what’s happening on stage for other people’s businesses. And it’s because we don’t have access to backstage, even the backstage that people quote unquote share in the real behind the scenes is still highly curated. So what starts to happen is we start building our businesses in a way where we’re trying to mimic other people. We’re taking pieces of their story, trying them on to say, how does that resonate with us? 

Great example. You’re in a Facebook group and you see somebody post an idea, maybe like me around, oh, I just tried this secret private podcast feed. And you go, oh, maybe I should try that, my people struggle. You might have thought about this when I described it. You might have thought like, oh, yeah, my people struggle with timing too. The other launches haven’t worked for me so let me try that new launch model and then you borrow my strategy, which by the way, if that’s aligned, go for it. 

18:52  

But what we do is we start trying on a bunch of other people’s ideas and along the way, we start becoming very, very busy, very overwhelmed. Very, there’s a lot on our plate. Very, there’s a lot of very’s here, but very much like those tasks keep getting kicked to the curb. And that’s something that I see happen so often, just in the last six months, I’ve had a couple clients going through a launch directly while working with me. And what was interesting is in these scenarios, these clients were following the protocols that people teach around launches. And what was fascinating was when we went into some of the details of the launch, they were using strategies that were not critical at their stage in business. And what I mean by that is, there’s a lot of different things that you can do. You can get fancy with your business, but a lot of times, especially newer business owners, there’s a lot of scrappy stuff that you can do that actually takes less time and can be more effective in relationship building but they’re not talked about in the scalable programs. 

20:08  

And what was fascinating was in talking with these clients, when I posed the question around, well, is that a must have? Do you actually need to do that? Do you want to do that? And they thought they had to, and the thing came up around, it never even occurred to me that I could do it differently. And that’s really what this is about when you think about your business is being very intentional around how you’re building it. Being very intentional around how you allow other people’s ideas to influence your decisions, to influence your strategy, to influence your direction. And it’s so so important for you to stay clear, stay focused, and stay in ownership of what you’re building because what happens, I don’t know, if you’ve noticed this trend. This is gonna be a little spicy and I might regret saying this later, but it’s the truth. 

21:09  

Okay. I have noticed over the last two years, there have been a lot of people leaving the online space. There has been some big names, there’s been some super huge names, there’s been some little maybe names that you might not even be aware of. This departure of people going back, getting full time jobs, closing down their online businesses. Most recently, I read someone who literally her website says I will help you create a business that you do not need to have a vacation from or that you’ll never want to leave, and then she just publicly announced that she was leaving because she built a business that she essentially hated. Now, no shame on her, like, we all have the discovery of like, we don’t know until you know. 

21:54  

But the reason why I bring this up is I want you to pay attention to how you’re feeling right now about the business you’re creating because if you don’t take ownership now, around how you feel about your business and the results you’re getting in your business, or lack thereof, how can you expect that to change when you double your revenue, or make that six figure mark, or scaled to half a million or whatever that next hurdle is for you. If you’re waiting for your business to feel better, if you’re sitting, you’re going like, oh, once I get X, then I’m finally going to slow down. When I hit the six figure mark, when I hit consistent 5k months, when I book that whatever client or that stage, then I’m finally going to slow down, I’m going to tell you, it is bullshit. It’s not going to change. It’s not going to be any different. It’s just the same thing that happens. I

I’ve used this example before but you know how lottery winners? We talk about these people who are super broke end up winning like these multi million lotteries and then they go broke within a matter of a few years. It’s because the habits and your attitude towards life and your outlook and how you operate, if we don’t address that, the other stuff will come, nothing will be different, even if you land upon the quote unquote financial success. 

23:17  

And if anything, I hope the stories and the example of people who have realized that I think those were people that definitely hustled their ass off to get where they wanted to be. My encouragement and this is my whole mantra for my business right now. I’ll be fully transparent with you. I probably have a very same attitude around business as you do. And it is, I get freaking frustrated that I am not as far along as I thought I would be right now. I know. I know. You’re probably thinking it to about you and maybe you’re thinking with me, I’m like, well, Heather, you’re doing great. I am doing great. I am doing great. I love my business. I love my clients. I love showing up to record this podcast for you every single week. And if I’m being super real, which that’s the only way you and I can be friend is I am so Oh, I thought I would be farther along. And I’m going to do the same coaching for myself right now that I do for every freaking single one of my clients is I say you are exactly where you need to be, to learn the lessons you must learn, to go where you’re going next. 

24:27  

That is the only belief and the only truth that I need that is productive because any other narrative that I give myself around like ah she’s tell him this or oh if only I would have had that, or, whatever narrative where you give, right, explain away or excuse away or brag on yourself for why you’re not where you want to be. What if you sit in and say what if what’s happening to me right now, where I’m at right now, the growth, the pace, the scenarios, what if all of those were happening to train you for what’s coming next? 

25:05  

Now you might be thinking like, well, that could be total bullshit. Well, maybe it could be but it’s a narrative that could serve you. How much more effective could you be if you’re brainstorming in that mode of thinking? How much more grace would you give yourself? How much compassion would you have and capacity you would have for creation?

25:28  

You see, you have two roads you can take as a business owner. You can piss on yourself when things go wrong if things don’t happen, or you can pause, and use this as moment to say, what can I take away from this? What opportunities this create for me? What doors are opening? How can I make this work for me? And you might be thinking, well, what happens when shit goes sideways? What if something really bad happens? What if my launch like I literally can’t pay my bills? 

All of those things I understand, crap happens. I talk about the crap in my life all the freaking time, right? But always asking yourself, you can’t change what has already happened. You can’t change what your Facebook ads performed at six months ago, you can’t change that, that client talk shit about you online or that person refunded, or somebody swiped your Instagram pictures and bio and all that stuff and posted on as Lisa Brown on Instagram and wouldn’t take it down. Real thing, if you follow that saga last year. 

26:27  

You can’t change it. It’s already happened. So the question is, are you going to direct your focus on anger and frustration and resentment, and not where I need to be which none of that breeds anything good? Or are you going to put on your big girl panties and say, all right, that sucked and I am exactly where I need to be to learn the lessons, even when they’re mother freaking spicy and I hate them but to learn those lessons for where I’m going next. 

That is the challenge, friend, and that is how you build a business with intention because when you’re focused on what’s not working, when you’re focused on the past, when you’re focused on the hypotheticals of what could happen, and it’s all garbage, it’s all negative and I know you know the difference, when you go down that little caddy line of thinking or someone else is really talking about what’s not working in the space, that isn’t serving you. 

But if you want to build something that you love, if you want business to feel fun, to feel light, you want to love your freaking clients, you got to talk about the clients that you love. Stop bitching about the ones that annoy you or the people who are struggling or suck up all your time. If you continue to focus on that you’re only going to get more of that. 

27:50  

Yeah, we just went down a whole rabbit hole around mindset, friend, and I giggled because I hate the word mindset. But this is what creates the business that you like, the attitude that you have, the outlook that you have around your current business will dictate your future business.

 I’m going to let that sink in and let this be a moment that if you have found things to be challenging, if you have maybe lost your way on that a bit, maybe that like excitement that you’ve had for your business, maybe that fire has kind of like petered out a bit. Let this be your moment to be reminded of what your freaking building because of the reason why you’re walking through all this. 

There’s a reason why you have the idea to go out there in the world, to help more people. I bet you’ve already helped a lot of people, right? It might not be the number that you would hope to impact this far but would you stand in front of your clients that you have already helped, the people that have already been impacted by your message? Would you stand in their faces and go, yeah, it was cool that I helped you but I didn’t help 10,000 people, like Hello, don’t crap on that person that you’ve already helped. 

Be grateful. Be grateful for them because if you can’t be grateful for the small group of people you’re helping right now, how on earth can you expect to be grateful for the 10s of 1000s of people you will help inevitably down the road? We have to approach, like the business that we want to create we need to live it now. 

29:21  

So let’s talk about okay, let me go into a couple of things. There’s three specific things that I really want to give to you today as some, like a lens for you to think about because I’m sure you’re feeling fired up right now and but you’re thinking like okay, Heather, this is the pep talk, I need. Thank you so much, like yes, we are here. 

If your kids are in the car, apologies. I’ve gotten a little spicier. Full disclaimer. I used to not swear on my podcast at all and inside my coaching sessions, inside with my clients. I do. I do swear. And quite frankly, I used to have the attitude that I I wouldn’t swear on stages. I rarely, rarely ever say F word on stages. I use it in everyday life, but I just don’t use it on stages because I know that that’s one thing that really prickles feathers for people. But as I’m becoming more and more authentic around how I communicate and how I show up for people, I swear and I do it now. 

So heads up, I changed the podcast, technically to explicit because it doesn’t mean that I’m like, going to be Gary Vee and swear all the freaking time but I this is how I talk. And I think it also is what makes me different than other speaking coaches is I’m not going to sugarcoat it and put the like, pretty how to sound polished professional, like a corporate person on. If that is your brand, I’m gonna empower you to do that. But my brand is not that, it’s why I escaped from being under someone else’s brand just because I wanted to speak in my way.

 So little side thingy as I am just recollecting the fact that I think I just heard like six times on this episode. I fully acknowledge if you’re like, where the hell did this come from, Heather? It’s always been there. I just hadn’t really brought it to the podcast before and I fully respect, and if that’s not for you, I understand. I will be intentional with it and I also won’t apologize for it. So I don’t expect you to do the same for your people but I get if that is not your spicy cup of tea. 

31:25  

Okay, let’s get into three things that I want to share with you today. So building your business with your intention, part number one that I want you to think about. So this like phase one or lens one, if we want to call it that. The word that comes to mind for me, is clarity, clarity. And I know you know this word, it’s like in everyone and their dog’s framework, it’s like the first step, we have to get his clarity. But what’s been interesting to me is clarity has been the first step that’s needed in almost every single business challenge that I have faced and that I have coached my clients through. 

32:04  

So when you think about it, living a business, or building a business, creating a business with intention requires you to understand what it is that you’re trying to create. And I think one of the challenges for a lot of business owners is we set our goals related to what we heard other business owners set. 

So your goal is to launch a program, your goal is to launch podcast, your goal is to hit, replace your corporate income, your goal is to then hit six figures to then hit seven figures. So now I want to, like offer a membership, like it’s these these rungs of a ladder that that have been placed in front of you, and I like to think about things a little differently. I like to think about clarity is around, how do you want to feel? What do you want to be working on? What do you not want to be working on. 

So any point in your business, when you come across something that is feeling sticky, or you’re feeling resistance on working on a project, or let’s say you’re in a launch, or you’re working with a client and you’re just you find yourself in this murky water of it just doesn’t feel good. Something is feeling hard, sneeze feeling sticky, something is feeling frustrating. There’s some kind of negative emotion. 

33:20  

My challenge for you is I want you to develop the ability and the self awareness to pause and ask yourself if you have clarity. Now clarity in what? You might be asking. Well, it kind of depends on what’s in front of you. But clarity comes for like simple questions around what is it that you’re actually trying to do here? What is the reason behind this? Here’s a big one. What does success look like in this one? 

One of my favorites borrowed from my coach, James Wedmore. He talks about something called the DOD, the DOD. What is your definition of done? This one is a big one. I use this all the time with my clients. When they’re working on something and they’re like, I just have to get the, let’s for example, I have to get my webinar. I have to get my webinar up and running. Cool. What is the definition of done on that? What is the actual clear definition of when will it be check the box complete? 

34:22  

When you think about clarity in terms of, let’s say speaking, right? Obviously, that’s what I talk about a lot here. If you are have this goal to be more confident when it comes to speaking, you and I both know that that’s just a very elusive, very fluffy excuse to feel unconfident right now. 

So let’s talk about what does that mean? What does confidence feels like? What specifically is going to happen where you’re gonna say to him like, I own that. What needs to happen? I think a lot of times, it’s very easy for us as business owners because we’re idea people. It’s very easy for us to throw out ideas and even tasks or even projects but without the clarity of but like, what is the destination here? What do we want the journey to look like, to feel like? Without that level of clarity, we just go into motion. 

35:14  

So the takeaway from this is if you want to build a business more intention, if you want to stay focused and avoid more distractions, you need to ask better questions of yourself around what are you doing here in this moment. I don’t mean like here on Earth. We don’t need to get into the big life question, my friend. Do that on your own time. 

But what I’m talking about is in your business, when you’re working on something, like if you have a project on your plate right now, or you’re getting ready to record an episode, or whatever it is that you have in front of you, you got to ask the question. What’s the goal of this? Why am I doing this? What does success look like? And these are very basic questions, these go back to like smart goals. 

So if you want to borrow that framework, google it. It’s just getting clarity. Otherwise, how are you going to measure your success? And I don’t mean like measure by having key performance indicators to say, did we win or not? Did we hit the goal or not. But unless you have clarity around what it is that you’re actually doing in this moment and what it’s contributing towards, it’s gonna create a lot of extra feelings, it’s going to create a lot of extra time. And, quite frankly, you’re most like, you’re more than likely doing things that are actually not required to get to the goal you’re trying to. 

36:27  

So to live with more intention, it has to start with you being intentional and to be intentional you have to know what like, what it is you’re doing and where you’re going. Okay, and I know this is so mother freaking common sensical but as my favorite quote, I quote, like, probably almost every episode by Will Rogers, just because it’s common sense, doesn’t mean it’s common practice. 

So this is your reminder that as you’re going through your day, as you’re running your business over the next couple of days, just come aware. Anytime you’re feeling some kind of negative emotion, ask yourself like, what am I trying to do here? What’s actually happening? What are the facts? Where am I going? Anchor yourself with, the more clarity you have, the more confidence you will have because you will know what it is you need to do. 

37:13  

Okay, once we have clarity, now we need to move into probably the most important thing and that’s becoming a ninja at avoiding shiny object syndrome. Said a different way, we got to become a ninja at putting up our blinders and ignoring the what other people are doing, and stop collecting and borrowing other people’s ideas if they don’t serve us. 

So shiny object syndrome, you know what it is, right? It’s this idea that you find something else, whether it’s you come across something online, where you see somebody else launching a program, something’s happening, you’re like, who I need that or who I want that, or, Oh, this is my next big thing. And it’s very hard, especially as entrepreneurs, because we’re very creative, very innovative, very like on to the next and that also creates a lot of extra in our businesses. The extra stuff for ourselves for our team become very busy, there’s that word again, when we chase these things. 

So I’m going to point you for this specific tip, I’m going to point you to that other episode I mentioned the five questions you should ask yourself to halt shiny object syndrome. I literally use these questions all the time in my business to help me clarify, is this something that I actually need to do. But if you want to build your business with intention, right? 

If you keep adding things to your grocery cart, let’s pretend we’re in the grocery store. Let’s say that you have a, let’s say you have a grocery budget for the week, we’re gonna go with this very practical metaphor or analogy here. You just keep adding things to your grocery cart, like, you’re gonna go over budget, right? 

So if you have a budget you’re working from, if you want to add things to your cart and you’re already have the amount that would be the money that you have, there’s a very clunky way to say it. But you know what I’m saying, like you have an amount. Let’s say you have 300 bucks to spend and you have 300 hours worth of food in your cart. If you keep adding stuff in, you’re gonna be over budget. You need to remove things in order to add things. And the hard part about shiny object syndrome is It’s so sparkly, where we just have this highly optimistic point of view that it’ll work out. It’ll be fine, we’ll just add it. 

39:21  

But what happens coming back to staying focused, avoiding distractions and building a business with intention, we have to be mindful of the give and take that happens when we add things to our plate because remember, as I mentioned before, when you have that thing in your mind of like if I just get through this space, I just have to get through tax season, I just have to get through the spring, that’s my busiest time with clients and then I can breathe. 

I’m just gonna ask you a question like, is that normally true? Do you really, maybe for you if you’re an accountant, you’re like yeah, that’s that’s absolutely true. I mean, look at tax was a bad example. There’s literally a season for that. But if you are like trying to catch up on client work, or you’re trying to get bachelor podcast, or you have a launch or you have something going on when you’re like, when I hit X, then I’ll feel better, then I’ll start walking again, then I’ll start running again, then I’ll start whatever, right? 

We know that when we add more things to our plate, we develop the had that comfort level, that becomes our normal operating stature. So what happens is when that project is over, when the launch is over, we fill then that heaviness, that capacity, we fill it with something else. 

40:34  

So I want you to be very mindful of are the things that you’re choosing to incorporate in your business and quite frankly, your life, are these shiny object syndrome or are they actually serving you based around the clarity you have determined around what kind of business you want, how you want to run your business, and how you want to feel every single day. 

So number one, clarity number two shiny object syndrome. And hey, the thing that I like to think about when it comes to shiny object syndrome, one thing that I’m really aware of is how easy it is for us to shame ourselves, how easy it is for us to be like, Ah, dang, I did it again or I always do this to myself, like I’m so bad at following through, or oh, I shouldn’t say I’m busy all the time. Maybe you’ve had a couple these moments in these episodes when you’re acting that thing and I need to stop doing that. I’m really bad about that. 

41:23  

And what I really want to encourage you here is I’m going to introduce a word, I talked about this before. I actually talked about it with one of my guests a couple of months ago. It is one of the words that I love. I know I mentioned, I have a lot of words that I use to like represent me but the word is curiosity and this word has served me very, very well because it allows me to create inquiries instead of judgments and this is really powerful with other people. 

Curiosity, by the way, is an effective weapon, not a weapon in a bad thing. But like it’s tool, it’s a really important tool for you as a leader and a communicator when you’re on stage and off. But curiosity comes in with self compassion. And remember earlier when I was talking about being negative and maybe going down that rabbit hole that the past, well, curiosity allows us to focus on the future, because simply that question that I posed is what opportunities is create? That’s coming from a place of curiosity, not judgment. 

42:24  

So the way for you, in my opinion, to really halt shiny object syndrome, listen to that episode, I’ll give you the exact steps. But if I had to sum things up, it’s start practicing being more curious and not curious, like a sales man where I want to understand all of the specs that you’re looking for, so I can sell you my stuff. I just mean curious, getting into conversation and even if that’s in conversation with yourself. Oh, my goodness, that is a powerful thing. It allows you to, like take the emotion out of things and it allows you to start really gathering information, exploring how you feel, exploring different solutions, that when we jump straight to action, when we jump straight to the shiny object, when we jump straight into motion, which personally for me, this is very hard, because when I have an idea, I’m like, run, baby, let’s do it. 

But inserting curiosity of going ha, I wonder why this is coming up right now. What is it about this idea that I love? And then you can pause, maybe, I use the private podcast, for example. I’ve been hearing about audio feeds, I’ve been hearing about Hello Audio. I’ve been hearing about a lot of things over the last year. And for some reason, this year, when I had the opportunity to retool my program, that the idea that quote unquote, shiny object came in again, a private podcast feed. And so when I start exploring, hmm, what is it about that that’s really intriguing to me. And that’s when myself and my copywriter Sarah, we were brainstorming for the upcoming launch and that’s when it clicked. I was like, Oh, my goodness. 

Accessibility is one of the most important things to me. It’s a core value I talk about all the time. Personally, having a hearing loss. I’m constantly thinking about accessibility when I tend to events, making sure that my work and my speeches and everything is available, because when I attend an event, sidenote, I’ve talked about this before. When I attend an event at in an audience, it is difficult for me to hear the speaker if I am not in the center of the room because I need the speakers like balanced. Fun fact for another day. 

Anyways, where I talk about that kind of accessibility all the time but when we started talking about repackaging up my program into three days for the Accelerator, I realized there was a why behind it. It wasn’t just a shiny idea, right? It wasn’t just like, Oh, get it down to three days, save ahead of time. It’s actually going to take me more work, by the way. 

44:49  

But what I came back to is the reason why that idea surface, the reason why the private podcast idea surfaced was I wanted my content to be more accessible to the busy business owners that I know listen to my stuff, whether they have full time jobs, whether they’re running their own launches, whether they have kids at home, or like whatever that looks like, is I wanted it to be able to be consumed on their terms, right? 

So that being curious, allowed me to be far more intentional on a launch that was thrown together very freaking quickly. But oh my gosh, that was a very, very strategic launch that performed very well. I mean, cart technically doesn’t open at the time of recording this. Cart hasn’t even opened yet. We have just done pre enrollment, and it’s already performing very, very well. So I want to I want to give to you that thought is, how can you incorporate more curiosity and compassion for yourself? 

Ask more questions. I just thought as, I said that I just thought about, sounded like I said, fart. I said, thart, which was not a word. But now that I say it, I had to say it out loud of just acknowledging that if you thought I said fart, I didn’t, but I heard it, too. So I said that though, of asking better questions, I just thought of another podcast episode that will be really great for this and it’s around curiosity and asking better questions, so we will link to that in the show notes as well. So you have some good, like, binge time with Heather, if that’s your jam. 

46:19  

Okay, but I want to wrap up here with part number three. So we’ve talked about one, being more intentional starts with clarity. Number two, avoiding shiny object syndrome is are all around curiosity, right? Creating more compassion for yourself. Number three, staying on track with your business goals requires commitment. And yes, I love an iteration so that was three C’s that we just did: clarity, curiosity and commitment. If you’re into that kind of thing, boom, that’s your remember, clarity, curiosity, commitment. So number three, staying on track requires commitment. Here’s the interesting thing. Remember how I talked about our annoyance, I’m gonna just say our cuz I’m gonna assume this is you too, that you’re not as far along as you wished. It’s normal. This is the building an online business journey, right? Because it’s like thrown in our faces all the time is the fast track to success. It’s the shortcuts. It’s the oh I did it in, I started my business, and I grow to a million dollars in 18 months. We just see all the fast tracks but the reality is, it is a long frickin track baby. And the only way for you to hang on and to feel good in the process, whatever the financial outcomes are of it, that’s between you and whatever your goals are. But what we really have to focus on is, how committed are you? 

47:44  

Because here’s one thing that I noticed, there is a culture of toe dipping in the online space and I don’t say this with any shame. I don’t say this with any judgment. It’s just something that I have noticed. Online business has a very low barrier to entry. You can do it with podcast mic, I’m using a free app right now to record this episode. I’m not even doing video today, because I just got into the shower, and I have a kid home sick and it is just what it is. But I could post this on a free podcasting platform if I wanted to. I don’t. I use Buzzsprout. I think I pay 18 bucks a month. But the point is to get stuff online, the barrier to entry is very, very low so competition is very, very high. 

48:30  

Okay, bring it in my business, administrative degree right now giving you some context around barriers to entry. Anyways, I bring this up, as it’s really easy to get started. It just takes a couple seconds of insane courage to get going. Courage is important. Courage get you started. But, friend, commitment gets you results. And that goes with any thing in life, whether you’re starting a new health journey, whether you’re building a business, whether you’re trying to find love, right, find a partner, whatever it scenario you want to put here. I’m sure this is true for what you teach too. Courage, we think that’s the hard part. Courage is the easy part. Because as the Instagram quotable thing, I don’t know who said it, but they say something along the lines of it just takes 20 seconds of insane courage to get started but then what? It’s the commitment, it’s the commitment that keeps you going. But unless you have the clarity and the self awareness to be curious, and ask more questions to raise your self awareness. Commitment isn’t going to work, commitment blindly. You have to know what you’re committed to for you to full asset. The challenge that I noticed, so talked a lot about my full apps commitment mantra. I’ve been talking about this a lot over the last year. And what’s interesting is if you’re just committed to success. I’m just committed to success. I’m just committed that one day, I’m gonna have a million dollar business, I’m just committed to my course launching, but you don’t have clarity around what it takes to get there, like what that means in your business. And I’m gonna geek out and say the data behind it, like how many things would you actually have to sell? Work backwards. How many people would actually need to see your offer? What’s the conversion rate? Yeah, you got to know math. I call it HoH math, hint of hustle, math. It’s very, very simple math. We do it on a napkin inside a lot of my business coaching. If you don’t know your numbers, if you don’t clarity around how that thing is going to like, if you don”t have clarity on what it will take for you to hit that number or clarity up for you around what exactly it’s going to take to have that kind of business that you’re after. You’re not actually committed. You’re committed to an idea, but you’re not actually committed to the work and my friend, full assing it is you’re committed to the work. 

51:01  

Now that doesn’t mean that you need to work all the time. I hope that I’m an example of this. I go through seasons of hustle, and I go through seasons of a lot of rest. In fact, right now, my rest, yes, while I was in launch is I’ve been Netflix binging at night, and by binging I’ll watch a couple episodes. But like after the kids go to bed, I’ve been watching the Blacklist. I started it back over which by the way, it’s super frickin dark and I’ve been doing Sodugo. Is that Sodugo. Sodo, soduco, sudoku. I don’t know how to pronounce it. Why is that word so hard. You know what I mean? I’m doing the same time. So it kind of takes off the darkness of the Blacklist. Anyways, I like I’m not up late doing emails or working. I’m up because my brain needs a break and I’ve been Netflexing, that’s fine. 

51:47  

I tell you this because here’s the thing, I am so clear around what I’m building in my business in this next chapter. I am so clear of what’s necessary, what I enjoy doing, what I have to do to make it happen and the things that I also want to do. I have such clarity around what it takes. I also don’t know what I don’t know but I am so committed to the business I have now and the one I’m building. I show up full ass. I’ve let go of needing to hit a certain timeline, I’ve let go of needing to hit a certain number. I’ve let go of those and I’m so committed to the process because it is so fun. Showing up for my clients, showing up for you here on this podcast, like that is so fun. I like in love with the experience that I’m having because I’m showing up in the way of the the kind of business I want. Yes, at a higher level. Yes, I would like to reach more people and I am so grateful for the reach that I have now for the people who are here now. 

52:51  

So I want you to think about this. Are you clear? Are you raising your self awareness by being more curious and are you committed to the process? Are you committed to the work? Are you open to being in love with where you are, so that you have the capacity to grow in to what you’re becoming? That is the name of the game, friend. This is how you build a business with intention. This is how you ensure that things are spending your time on to the things that you enjoy. It’s how you, by being curious is how you go back to. Is this thing here clarity? Is this thing actually required for where I’m going and curious? That was curiosity asking that question. You do a follow up question. What should I be working on? What could I be working on right now that contribute? And then when you know that, then you can ask the question am I committed to following through? This is how I built my career and my business. And what’s interesting is I know these things to be true and still, I have to be very intentional, name of the episode with practicing these because this isn’t one of these. This isn’t a knowledge transfer. This isn’t a like check the box, I’ve downloaded the information. This is a practice. 

54:03  

Becoming an entrepreneur isn’t just a title. This isn’t just your job role. It is a way of being entrepreneur. If you want to stay an entrepreneur, if you want to be a profitable entrepreneur, there’s a way in which you need to approach business. And I hope that me being very frank and candid today, talking through these things has been helpful in unlocking some ideas for you around how you can reconnect to what it is you’re building, how you’re showing up. And I hope that I’ve put a little fire in your belly for making that possible because the thing is, if you’re building a business. I know the thing that you’re creating on whatever it is that you, like it lights you up. There’s a reason why you’ve taken all the risks to get to where you are. The question is, how can you like really reengage and excited around it and simplify it in a way where it feels so freakin fun. Does it mean it’s gonna be fun every moment? No, there’s some moments that you’re like, oh, it friggin sucks and you’re still gonna be able to push through that. 

55:02  

So I hope that these tips today this one I’ve shared with you, I hope this is really helpful. I would love to hear from you if you have any additional tips around how you stay super focused and intentional in your business. Shoot me over DM on Instagram. I’d love to hear from you. I’m @theheathersager. And I just can’t wait for this next chapter that we’re on together for those of you who join me inside the Accelerator, I can’t wait to see you in a couple weeks when we teach it live. If you missed this round of the Accelerator and want to be the first to know what next time, there’s a link in the episode show notes that you can go on to get on to the waitlist so that we can help you build your signature talk and start showing up on stages and make any impact you desire. All right, friends, I will see you again next week. Same time, same place. Bye.

55:55  

Thanks for listening to another episode of the hint of hustle podcast. If you’re in a season of hustle, consider this the permission slip you didn’t need to take a beat. Go on a walk, stretch, call a friend go reheat that coffee for the fourth time and actually drink it because those big dreams are chasing pay required the best version of you. And if those goals include expanding your audience, establishing your industry credibility and selling your premium price programs. The best way to tackle this is through speaking your voice is your best brand acid will teach you how to use it as a marketing tool. Head on over to the speaker co.com forward slash start and I’ll see you there

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