Text on picture of woman working at desk: 6 tips to complete the goal pushes against your comfort zone

6 tips to complete the project or goal that feels uncomfortable and pushes against your comfort zone

Last week I shared that I broke my habit of running around trying new projects and things that didn’t work by focusing on a project that forced me to learn and exercise a critical business skill that I lacked.

Working on that project was uncomfortable, pushed against my comfort zone hard, didn’t come naturally to me, and I wasn’t always motivated to keep going.

And yet I did, and the project was a success in the areas I needed it to be.

So, how did I do it?

The truth is there wasn’t just one thing that allowed me to complete this project. It was a combination of things.

Below I’ll share what I believe were the most significant contributors to completing the project.

My future success depended on me learning this skill.

While I wasn’t motivated to do this project specifically, I knew that not doing the project would mean I’d continue to have crappy results in my business. Basically, this skill was so important I knew that all my future success would be built on what I learned through this project. Not doing this project would mean my business would not move forward.

I was clear about my deadlines.

Because the project was uncomfortable and pushed against my comfort zone, it was super important to be very clear about what needed to be done and when. This allowed me to put on blinders to the larger project and only focus on the specific task in front of me.

Knowing that I wanted to start sending invites x days before the project began meant those deadlines weren’t moveable. Once I sent the first invites out, I was now committed to the date. It was out there.

I spread the work out over time.

I also made sure that the work was getting done, but was spread out. This allowed me to keep my energy up. I generally have more energy and attention in the morning, so I made sure those uncomfortable tasks came first.

I regularly reviewed my progress.

I gave myself time to review what worked and didn’t and adjust. Because the skill I was learning didn’t come naturally to me, I paid attention when something felt more in line with me (more down my alley, more me) and made a note of it to repeat later.

I had clearly defined tasks.

I was very clear about the tasks that needed to be completed. My task wasn’t to “invite people.” The tasks were to “make a list of at least 25 people that I think will benefit from this” and “personally invite that list of people via a phone call.”

It helped to focus on today’s task (or tasks) for the project. And because I spread the work out, I usually only had one 30-minute to 1-hour block of this to do each day. Once it was done, I could move on to tasks that felt much easier.

The bonus was how great it felt to have the task done and be able to move on.

I remembered my bigger goal when things felt hard (my why).

When things felt difficult, I’d take a deep breath and remember what I saw on the other side of this project. I’d remind myself why it was important to do this.

This sounds a bit like my first reason above, but this one is a bit deeper. The first one, my future successes depended on me learning this skill, is more of a nuts and bolts reason.

This reason is more of a mindset shift. It was about reminding myself that I could do these hard things and why it was important to step into being a person who did this hard thing and what that would do for me.

Again, it wasn’t just one of the above reasons that allowed me to complete the project that, on some levels, I did not want to do. It was the above reasons together that made the difference.

I’ve read multiple places that what makes a goal successful isn’t just about remembering why it’s important to you. It’s about putting the systems in place that support the work of doing hard things—remembering your why is one crucial part of that.

What questions do you have around doing projects in your business that feel uncomfortable or push against your comfort zone? Or share your experiences with this. Let me know in the comments.

I should have sent that weeks ago

Over the past week, I’ve done a lot of dancing in my office chair. You see, my private Facebook group, Productivity for Women Entrepreneurs (join us!), DOUBLED in size last week and I do a little happy dance everytime someone requests to join.

And I’m having conversations with people as they join and something that’s popped up a couple times is “I’m spending a lot of time doing things, but it’s not turning into money.”

I’ve spent some time thinking about this the last few days.

The truth is, there’s a lot of things that can contribute to that situation.

This week, I want to talk about the difference between urgent and important.

While they are related, they are not the same thing.

Let me share a conversation I had with someone a while ago.

Rhonda and I were talking (that’s not really her name) and she shared that she needed to make more money that month. So, we talked about everything she was currently working on and wanted to get done.

After a bit, Rhonda said: “You know, I really need to send this client an invoice next week. I probably should have sent it two weeks ago, but I’m just too busy.”

I’d like to say that I’ve never heard anything like this before, but I have.

Why does this happen?

Because sending an invoice is important, but it’s not always considered urgent – until it’s really urgent.

Now, I’m not saying that this is always what’s going on in the situation of someone “doing a lot, but it’s not turning into money.”

However, it is something to look at.

So, for this week’s Wednesday LIVE with Evie, we’ll be talking more about the difference between urgent and important. You can watch the video here.

The most annoying motivational quote

i-heard-this-quote-when-at-a-place-of-extreme-stress-and-overwhelm

We all have 24 hours in a day, how are you going to use yours?

This quote, as normally interpreted, says great, famous and fabulously successful people reached their goals with the same limitations in a day as you — 24 hours — and you can reach your goals too with some perseverance, smarts, and a good attitude.

And would it surprise you to learn that I really dislike this quote?

I don’t find it inspiring at all.

I find it very annoying.

Now, before you start wondering if I’ve had a bad day or something, let me share my history with this quote.

I first heard this quote about a year into my business. I was overwhelmed, frustrated, and tired. My business wasn’t making any money and I was doing a lot of work for NO return.

And hearing this quote when at that place, instead of seeing the possibility for myself through the quote, I beat myself up with it.

I made everything I was doing and had been doing wrong and bad. Because while all those other people had created success with their 24 hours, I had put myself in debt, worn myself out, and didn’t feel successful at all.

I heard the quote and felt like I should be doing more. I felt guilty for any time that I wasn’t spending being productive.

And I compared everything I knew about myself to everything I knew about “those successful people.” And I always came up severely lacking.

dont-compare-your-inside-to-someone-elses-outside
Don’t compare everything that’s going on for you with what someone else is deciding to share with you. You don’t know everything that’s going on with them that you don’t see.

The problem was I didn’t know about the crappy, stressful, overwhelmed and self-doubt filled days that I’m sure all “those successful people” had — I only saw the success.

But I compared my crappy, stressful, overwhelmed, self-doubt filled days to the success I perceived them to have.

And it felt like someone above me said “catch this foundational tidbit I’m tossing down to you” and I looked up just in time to see a brick hit me in the forehead and knock me to the ground.

Ouch! Next time can I have a hug instead?

When I heard this quote all I could see was how I was failing to use my 24 hours — I was doing it wrong. Crap.

So, that’s why I don’t care for this quote, because when I first absorbed it I used it to knock myself down and not to build myself up.

This is also why you’ll never hear me repeat this quote.

It might be wonderfully uplifting and motivating to people who are feeling excitement and success, but to anyone who’s feeling overwhelmed and doubting themselves, they might hear this quote the way I did.

Final two thoughts:

  1. Hearing this quote, or any other motivational quote, and feeling beat up by it is okay. It could be an indicator that you’re a stressed or overwhelmed. That’s valuable to know. When you know or recognize stress or overwhelm, then you can do something about it.
  2. If you say this quote, or any other motivational quote, and the person hearing it doesn’t take it the way you intended don’t make them wrong about their interpretation. Do notice it. Do get curious. Ask how they interpreted the quote and talk about it.

And this has made me wonder: what uplifting quotes do you find annoying or have you beaten yourself up with in the past? Share in the comments below.

A Mastermind Group is a meeting of committed people who share a common goal and are looking to support, motivate, and help each other.

A place for support and guidance

Have you ever had a decision to make or a problem and wished you had someone to share the situation with and receive some guidance?

Yeah, me too.

Thankfully, I do have that, I have friends and am in programs that provide helpful and useful thoughts, opinions, help, support, and guidance.

Some are more formal relationships and others are more laid back.

And there are different things that I bring to different people/groups. It depends on the relationship.

One way that I’ve received guidance, is through business mastermind groups.

A Mastermind Group is a meeting of committed people who share a common goal and are looking to support, motivate, and help each other.I have a long love affair of mastermind groups – I joined my first business mastermind group in 2010 before I had a business!

It was great. I was in a group with established business owners (people who had businesses with clients that paid them!) and up-and-coming business owners (people who had businesses with clients that paid them, but not enough) and there was me and aspiring business owner.

I thought I’d have nothing to add to the conversation, but I did. While I couldn’t share advice or stories around what had worked for me in business, I could share what would appeal to me as a potential client.

I learned a lot from that group and am still connected with many of the ladies.

My other experiences with mastermind groups have been just as wonderful and each was set up differently. Each group has its own feel – and I always get what I need from each of them when I fully show up and participate.

I’ve brought many topics to the various mastermind groups I’ve been a part of – marketing questions, frustrations, and struggles I was working through. And each time I received insightful questions, suggestions, and guidance.

And I’ve found for myself, business masterminding is most helpful when I’m with a group of people who already know me and my business a bit because we see each other regularly in a structured mastermind.

How would being in a mastermind group benefit you and your business?

If you’re interested in joining a formal mastermind group, on October 12 I’m hosting a “Come try it out” morning session. You can find all the information and RSVP here.

I have two groups of the Momentum Mastermind group starting, this “come try it out” session will give you a feel for what it’s all about.

What are you waiting for?

clockWhat are you waiting for?

For me, I was waiting for a level of clarity about my business and my message that I didn’t feel like I had.

So, I kept thinking about it.

and thinking.

and thinking.

and thinking.

And clarity didn’t appear.

What if clarity can come from doing things wrong?

Shhh. Don’t tell anyone, but that’s what I did. I did it wrong. All wrong. I started promoting my webinar only 7 days before I had it. I even forgot to put it in my newsletter. I’ll spare you the long list of things that weren’t done right or even started.

AND my webinar was perfectly and gloriously messy.

Yep, messy.

What are you waiting for?

Stop waiting. Do it anyway. And smile at the wonderful messy thing you create!

Oh, and you’re bound to happen across a bit of (but not all) of what you were waiting for in the process.