How Tailored Income Goals Keep Your Business On Track

When you’re running a business on your own, it’s easy to get swept off course. Solopreneurship and small business ownership are both full of moments where we waver, question whether our dreams will work out, and look to what others are doing. This can easily fuel impostor syndrome and turn into a full-blown comparison fest. When this happens, you may lose sight of your own goals and values.

Last week, we went over how to set income goals that are tailored to your lifestyle costs and needs. Today, I want to share with you how doing that groundwork can help you stay focused on your own bottom line, and ultimately help you reach your goals more quickly.

Avoid Comparison

It can be tempting to run your business in a way that is essentially some version of “keeping up with Joneses,” but as you might guess, that’s not very fulfilling. Other businesses can provide healthy examples of what we do and don’t want, but it’s important that we don’t compare our business to others, especially in the monetary sense. We don’t know what other business’s numbers are like on the inside. The businesspeople we admire could be grappling with debt, struggling to pay themselves, or overworking.

Stick to Your Game Plan

Instead of playing the comparison game, I suggest taking regular time to get back in touch with your vision – your “money why.”Doing this will keep you in touch with your own goals and help you keep moving toward them. It can also increase your capacity to appreciate all the hard work you’re already putting in, and feel grateful for all the opportunities available to you.

If you haven’t done the work to investigate what your values are, and what you really want more of in your life, take some time do that. Then figure out what financial figures you need to make those dreams come true, and there you go – you’ve got a game plan to stick to.

Skip Marketing Gimmicks

If you’ve spent much time in the business coaching sphere looking for advice, you may have come across someone’s ad inviting you to work with them to “Have your first 25k month!” (or whatever the promise is). While these nice round numbers might sound nice, they’re really there for the slogan, not for you.

Your financial goals should be based on your values. They should be designed to bring you whatever you want more of in your life. Those nice round numbers won’t do much for you in the way of life satisfaction if they’re not connected to a larger vision of what you want for yourself. Having income goals that are tailored to your life can help you sift through the barrage of marketing messages and financial advice out there.

I hope this post inspires you to keep working to create a business that truly meets your personal needs. If you would like to work with an accountability partner and guide to identify your values and shape your finances around them, check out 4 Week Money Refresh, a package of 4 private 1 hour personal financial coaching sessions, available through April 30th!

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Angela

Image: Eye for Ebony

Why You Should Always Base your Financial Goals on Your Values

I’m not a big fan of making money for no reason. When we have an abstract number in our head about how much we want to make, this can be distracting and counterproductive at best, and leave us feeling empty at worst. Financial goals shouldn’t be based on round, nice-sounding numbers that carry an air of success. They should be based on what we actually want to get out of life!

Your Values = Your Satisfaction

The way I see it, your values are pretty simple. The more you incorporate the things you value into your life, the more satisfied you are. In other blog posts, I’ve written about Vicki Robin’s concept of enough, and Lynn Twist’s ideas of sufficiency. Having enough, feeling sufficient and satisfied – isn’t that what most of us really want out of life? Your business, your finances, and your goals should enable you to have enough of the things you value in your life to feel satisfied.

For more thoughts on identifying your values, I suggest reading “What’s Your Money Why?”

Stay the Course

This is much easier said than done! We live in a world where we are met with many different distractions that make us feel insufficient. This can be especially difficult for business owners, because we can get caught up comparing our incomes and lifestyles to others, instead of staying focused on what we want for ourselves.

Creating goals that are based on your values helps you maintain your focus on your own ideas of success. It can help you avoid anxious behaviors like overworking and over-saving.

Assign a Number

Rather than falling for some number that “sounds like success,” it’s important to assign a number to your goals and dreams.

For example, you take time to really analyze your values and your dreams. You decide that what you want is more fun in your life, specifically through taking an aerial silks class (or whatever intentional choice you might make to increase your value of fun). You would then assign a number to that dream by calculating how much a class and any necessary supplies would cost, plus any other associated expenses you might want to be aware of. That gives you a dollar value that can help inform your financial goals.

I go more in depth on this process in my free e-Book, Reach Your Life Goals: A Business Owner’s Guide, which you can download by filling in the pop-up window here.

What it comes down to is that your financial goals should be intentional reflections of what you want to create in your life – otherwise, do you really want to achieve them? For more thoughts on this topic, check out my Facebook Live video, part of Financial Self Care Friday. And if you would like to work with an accountability partner and guide to identify your values and shape your finances around them, check out 4 Week Money Refresh, a package of 4 private 1 hour personal financial coaching sessions on early bird sale through April 15th!

Happy goal setting!

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Angela

Image: Tyler Nix

How Starting My Business Helped Me Live My Motorcycle Dreams

Earlier this month, I completed my fifth annual 1,400-mile cross-country motorcycle road trip. This is my third year riding my own bike, and my third year riding on my dream motorcycle, a red Indian.

I haven’t always been a motorcyclist. The first two years of this trip, I rode on the back of my husband’s bike. But after that second trip, I decided I wanted to learn how to ride. I completed my local motorcycle safety program and got my license. We bought a Honda Rebel 250 and I set a goal to ride my first 500 miles. Then I set my sights on a bigger bike, more mileage, and a longer trip.

Living my motorcycle dreams involved a long process of incremental growth, a flexible schedule, and some money. I had all of these things because I was a seasoned business owner. While I’ve been working under the name At Peace With Money for about three years, I have a much longer history of doing independent bookkeeping work, and before that I ran a jewelry design business. The skills I gained as a solopreneur – dedication, commitment to incremental progress, etc. translated well into becoming a motorcyclist.

I also have a flexible schedule as a solopreneur, which meant I could find the time during the week for lessons and rides. And I had the ability to pay for a course, because of my financial savvy in my own business experiences. I find that solopreneurship can be full of valuable lessons, and can give you the skillsets and necessary resources to accomplish the things you’ve dreamed up. That’s why my objective with At Peace With Money is to help solopreneurs align their business profits with their life goals; because I think it’s 100% possible!

I hope this little pep-talk give you a dose of inspiration for the week. Think of a dream you’ve always had. How could you orient your business to focus on achieving it? You might also like to read How to Start a Goal-Based Business for more thoughts on this subject.

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Angela

 

Claim Your Power

Are we afraid of our own power? One of the things I absolutely love about Barbara Huson’s book, Secrets of Six Figure Women, is that it asks us to face this question. In a society where we are often trained to take lower pay and funneled into “helping” professions, our earning potentials are often restricted, and we participate in the repression of our own power unknowingly. Some would argue the drive to help and caretake is natural for us. Barbara pulls a quote from Fortune of Oct 2000 which reads, “Women feel powerful when they are making a difference and expanding their own capabilities.” Naturally, we gravitate towards improving the world, but we can do this while also pursuing personal power and security. 

Every time you leave the beaten path and aim for exceptional, every time you silence your fear and speak with your own voice, every time you stop acting small and start taking up space, you are owning your power and emancipating others to follow in your footsteps.

Financial Security Is Power

Power does not require money, and is not exclusive to it. However, if you have the financial freedom  to leave a job, leave a spouse, take time off, give money away, and allocate financial resources as you please, that can only add to your personal agency. Money gives you choices. Those choices can allow you to step into every part of your power.

When we claim our power in this way, we raise the stakes in our lives, and stop playing the small game.  Barbara writes,“It’s not what we have but what we do with what we have that gives us or denies us financial security.” Whatever we choose to do, we can do more easily and powerfully with financial security. 

Serious fear underlies female passivity around money. My post on wealth-building may have stirred up some of this fear for you – and it’s exactly why so many of us stall on our way to building our assets. This fear is understandable. We receive many negative messages about powerful or wealthy women. They are often the villains in animated films, and there are no positive words for powerful women. The ones that come to my mind are “bitch” and “ball breaker.” This desperately needs to change, and it starts with us as we choose to turn against it. 

Claiming your power and building financial security may be uncomfortable or cause conflict. It means rocking the boat, saying no, and not always being liked or welcomed. I believe that, in the long term, these things are a small price to pay in pursuit of your own freedom and power. 

Claim Power For Yourself and Others

Claiming our power is an act of self love. When we honor and value ourselves and have the bravery and financial security to live our desires – that is real self love. This love ripples outwards, and makes a positive difference in the lives of those around us. By striving for what we really deserve, we can inspire and pave the way for a new generation of people ready to do the same. When we have the resources to donate to causes we agree with, we can heal the planet and help others achieve their dreams. When we claim our power, we can also extend that power to others. 

I hope that this post inspires you to reach for your dreams – you truly deserve to have the financial security you need and the agency you want. If you’re interested in working with an accountability partner to help you get there, you know where to find me! Check out my Services page and schedule a call. This post is the fourth in a series I did on Secrets of Six Figure Women by Barbara Huson. You can read my other posts in the series on mindset, action, and wealth building at the links!

Angela

 

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