It takes a lot to grow and manage a business, as you know…you’ve been at this for a while. I’ve discovered that as you step into the role of CEO and start to really lock in doing what it takes to be successful in business, there are going to be some growing “pains”. The growth season you experience can literally stop you in your tracks and prevent you from achieving your goals and dreams – if you let it.
So I wanted to take a little time to talk about 5 key mindsets that you will need as you transition from building your business to growing your business.
1. Growth Mindset – As an entrepreneur, I'm sure you've heard this a thousand times, “you have to have a growth mindset!". But what does this truly mean? Having a growth mindset means using every experience as a learning opportunity. Taking challenges and risks; being willing to try new things, make mistakes, and learn from them. A big part of having a growth mindset is investing in yourself. The hard truth is that while you've done well so far in business, you don't know it all. To seek knowledge, gain skills and overall make yourself better is key and comes with a level of investment whether it's your time or money.
2. Discipline Mindset – When you don’t want to, but have to do it anyway. This one is haaaard! We all have days we don't feel like it right? But our success sometimes hangs on the ability to push through. Having a disciplined mindset keeps us focused on the things that need to be done in order to move the ball forward. We also have to be disciplined with our time and money. Growing a business takes sacrifice - it may mean you can't Netflix and chill ALL day, shoot the breeze with a friend for 2 hours on a Monday or splurge on a trip to Vegas - you've got work to do and business expenses to cover.
3. Focused Mindset – There’s a lot of information running around the internet on what you should do and could do. Everyone has an opinion and a plan for how businesses should run, grow and scale. That’s not to say the information is bad and some of it may actually benefit you. Having a focused mindset means setting parameters around what you consume and act upon based on your goals and what you are trying to achieve in business. It's easy to get distracted - have those squirrel moments - especially when we see nice shiny objects or people flexing on the 'gram and want that lifestyle too. Keep focused on what YOUR mission and vision is; the purpose you are meant to execute. The goals that you set and the action plans to get there. If the information you see doesn’t line up with those things, then put it away for another time and stay laser-focused on the steps that will help you achieve your goals.
4. Take Action Mindset – Dreaming big can be scary and when we experience fear we have a fight or flight response. Most of us will activate our flight response, which in business looks like stalling, being paralyzed, trying to make things perfect, and not putting yourself out there. But, in order to grow you have to condition your mind to fight even when it's uncomfortable; mostly when it's uncomfortable. The take-action mindset is about execution, making decisions, and doing what it takes to reach the level of success you desire. Having amazing ideas is great, but if you don't take action they just stay ideas and no one gets to benefit from them - not even you.
5. Give Yourself Some Grace Mindset – You're doing a lot, wearing all the hats. Balancing family, possibly a 9-5 or part-time job plus trying to grow a business. Give yourself grace. With this mindset, you have to take time for mindfulness and self-care without guilt. When you feel yourself getting burnt out, frustrated, or overwhelmed – listen to your mind and your body. Reset and recenter – do yoga, meditate, take a hot bath, read, watch a movie, take a walk, or spend quality time with family. Keep reminding yourself that you are doing the best you can, with what you have and it's beyond an amazing job. You've come so far - celebrate all the wins, no matter how big or small.
Ok, I had to add this bonus: Awareness Mindset – I couldn't leave this one out because we all experience it, don't quite know how to deal with it and personally I don't think it's talked about enough. As entrepreneurs, we experience ALOT of emotions, mostly in dealing with ourselves personally. This journey can feel like you are stepping into a new you or a more evolved version of you. It's important to have an awareness mindset where you recognize these feelings and take moments to dig in. Some of it stems all the way from childhood traumas. Things that you've suppressed for so long are surfacing as you are trying to build and grow a business. There are likely going to be instances where you find yourself being stretched, uncertain of if you can do this, and why all these things are coming up all of a sudden. Take moments to reflect internally, even on your past of how you came to be who you are. Ultimately, you will reach a point of having to face yourself and be willing to become new in order to grow personally and your business. Being aware and doing the work internally to be better mentally will make all the difference, promise.
So, what's my biggest struggle? Well truthfully I experience and deal with ALL of these from time to time. But my biggest mindset struggle is Discipline believe it or not. I know the things I have to do, but pushing myself sometimes is tough. Especially when it comes to creating content LOL! But I'm intentional about working on it daily and putting strategies in place for me to keep executing according to plan.
Before wrapping up, please know this is not a catch-all list. These are what I consider the 5 main areas (6 including the one I threw in lol). As you can imagine being a CEO comes with an array of mindset needs. These are, however, core areas that I’ve experienced personally and work with my clients in facing as they are shifting into the growth phase of their business.
I would love to know what mindset areas you are working on as you continue to grow and scale your business. Leave a comment and let me know…let's chat!
Eboni Cotton, PMP Certified Project Mgr + Operations Strategist.