If you are an overthinking, procrastinating, people-pleasing worrywart – how do you ever get shit done and move your business forward instead of stagnating and staying stuck? I’m going to give you my main 7 principles that help me overcome some of my habits and traits to make business and life simpler, happier and easier.
What’s the definition of adulting? Well, according to the Oxford English Dictionary, it’s the practice of behaving in a way characteristic of a responsible adult, especially the accomplishment of mundane but necessary tasks.
I think we’ve all felt that being a responsible adult isn’t our forte sometimes…
Number 1. Done is better than perfect.
Oof. My podcast is a perfect example of this. I first planned it in 2019 at Janet Murray’s 2020 sorted conference.
I got guests lined up. I had plans in place. But I dithered. As it had to be perfect. Video or podcast or both. Live interviews or recorded. This platform or that. Weekly or monthly.
I’m a perfectionist. Yet I also don’t believe that perfection is attainable in the day-to-day world of business. There has to be a point where I say ‘this is good enough. This is done.’ Or I could go on making tweaks and tinkering and improving ‘just one more thing’ and never finish the job.
So I started with done is better than perfect. A point at which I can let go.
With the podcast, I’m not happy with the name. The sound quality. The platform. But meh!!!
I can come back and improve at a later date. Or change things. But I’m not sitting on this for another 3 years waiting for the whole concept and plan to be ‘perfect’.
Not taking any action or making a decision – is in fact a decision to stay the same.
Number 2. What’s the worst that can happen.
This principle actually came about from some CBT I undertook many moons ago because I was being bullied in the workplace. I was looking into grievances and whistleblowing but was terrified of the consequences.
In the first session, the therapist asked me ‘what’s the worst that could happen’ if I took a certain course of action. And it was just a mind-blowing question that made me realise that I was keeping myself stuck.
That not taking any action or making a decision – is in fact a decision to stay the same. So the only way for things to change – was for me to move in a direction of my choosing.
I now use this when I’m stumped with what to do. I use it in life and business. For everything from should I paint the ceiling a bright orange to deciding on a business idea – like this podcast.
This is another aspect of what kept me from doing this for years.
What’s the worst that can happen if I do the podcast and it fails? Say I actually manage to record episodes. Even promote it. And no one listens. Well… I tried it!
All I’ve lost is some time. I’m using Anchor to do it in (now built into Spotify) – a free service owned by Spotify. I’m using my phone. The worst that can happen is a bruised ego and a few lost hours.
This is why I’ve also reframed ‘failures’. Failures and fuckups are just opportunities for me to grow. To assess, adapt and improve. #winningfailure
Number 3. Have a Plan B.
And maybe the workings of a Plan C…
This has been a cornerstone principle for possibly most of my life. Having a plan B in case things aren’t going to plan. This is something I can talk about for hours!
The system I use for planning stuff is actually called the Shit Hits Fan Plan. I use it with all my clients and in my life.
But why is it important to have a plan B? So you’re prepared you silly sausage!
If something goes wrong, you have a backup plan. You can also identify what could go wrong in advance and take steps to lessen the chances of it occurring. Also, if shit hit the fan, you have a plan and steps ready to go.
I use it in my personal life whether it’s for walks with the chap -for instance, I like to have a map something in case it rains, snacks and water, a fully charged phone, alternative route ideas in case we encounter issues etc. You get the picture, I prepare for every eventuality my mummy bag is a standing joke amongst friends. I have cables and tech gear in a small makeup bag. I have pills and potions and a mini sewing kit and a glasses repair kit in another little bag. I have hankies just in case, a mini umbrella, always have a book to read a notepad and pen and a spare one. Just in case I break down in the car… or maybe I decide on the spur of the moment to work from a cafe for a day. I have all my gadgets with me.
But in all seriousness, I like to have a plan B for most things in business. If my clients are mid-launch and say ConvertKit goes down, we regularly backup and download the list. So I just need to make a quick trial account elsewhere. Maybe in Mailerlite, import the list. Our email copy is stored in Google Docs. So I quickly add the next emails in the automation and so on. So there might be an hour’s timeout, but we can be up and running on another platform pronto.
I recommend regular Google workspace backups. These include G Drive, Gmail, and all manner of Google products. It’s called a Google Takeout. Look it up.
I backup my Mac to separate cloud storage just in case. So if Google goes down as it has done in the last 12 months, I can at least access docs in the backup. I have my Gmail email, go through Apple Mail as well in the background – so I always have a copy to refer back to if Gmail is inaccessible. I can at least see some of my emails. I also have my contacts backed up so worst case scenario, I can inform them from a separate email account of the issues if it’s an ongoing issue or deadlines are looming.
Number 4. Rebel against expectations
The greatest war undertaken is within yourself.
Number 5. Trust in the unfolding.
Number 6. Adulting – is essential.
You matter just the way you are.
Number 7. Love yourself.
It says what it does on the tin. Be kind in how you talk to yourself and about yourself. You matter just the way you are. And there’s nothing wrong with who you are as a person. I’m not everyone’s cup of tea, and that’s okay. I can be sarcastic, quirky, got dark humour. I am a very individual sausage and not to everyone’s palate. And I simply don’t care anymore. It used to cripple me with anxiety trying to conform to what I thought people wanted of me. But nowadays, I just love myself for who I am. And that’s good enough for me.
There’s a few things that didn’t quite make the list, and I reserve the right to change my mind at any second of the day. These are things I do love and abide by as much as I can. One of my favourite ones is something my mom taught me ‘not my circus, not my monkeys’. I am one of those people that gets over-invested and over-involved in situations outside my control or remit. Which is definitely why I struggled in a 9-5 in the past, I kind of want to move outside of my little job box and interfere in other boxes and fix them. So, ya know, self-employment is amazing for me, I can play with all the boxes as often as I want. But I do have to remind myself sometimes that certain situations are just, they’re not my circus, not my monkeys, it’s not for me to interfere, intervene, or worry about, I have to let those things go and just leave people to whatever they’re doing.
One of the other things I’m passionate about is there is no such thing as one size fits all. I’m 6 foot with feet to match (know any decent EU43 shoe suppliers – send me links). And I found that there is no one such thing as one size fits all in clothing anymore. And there’s the same for business. I see a lot of people selling courses that are going to teach you how to make 6 figures, 7 figures – follow exactly what this person’s done… and you will have the exact same level of success. Run your business this way, be a coach this way. Do it like this, use a system just like this. But it doesn’t take into account your uniqueness. So no, there is no such one size fits all in life or business. Not that I found anyway.
And that’s it. I’m Rebecca. I’m really grateful if you got this far. And I’ll see you next time.