Something Even Better

Pre-SEB: Choosing your business non-negotiables

May 03, 2021 Stacie Mitchell Episode 22
Something Even Better
Pre-SEB: Choosing your business non-negotiables
Show Notes Transcript

A common struggle with new (and not-so-new!) entrepreneurs: Having no idea where to focus your time every week in order to keep growing.

Not anymore! This week’s episode covers how to choose your business non-negotiables -- the tasks you do every single week to grow your business and get more clients -- without burning yourself out in the process. 

Want to watch my live interview with my client Julie on how she gets clients without social media? It’s happening on May 12th at 2 pm Eastern in the free Facebook group! Join here: https://staciemitchell.com/group 

Intro:

Welcome to burnt-out to biz boss, the podcast that teaches you how to go from burnt-out employee to fired up entrepreneur in less time and with less stress and hustle. And now here's your host business mentor, burnout expert, and professional life. Coach Stacy Mitchell. Hello,

Stacie:

And welcome to a brand new episode of burned out to visit boss. I am so thrilled to be talking to you today. You might hear the birds singing outside. It's a glorious beautiful actually kind of chilly morning in North Carolina, but I'm just, I'm excited for the, the , sunshine and the birds. But today I want to talk about something really important. You've probably heard me mention it before it is your non negotiables. And you're probably thinking what in the world is she talking about? So what are non-negotiables, I'm going to go ahead and define it so that you know what I'm talking about, they are the strategies you choose to do consistently every week in your business. And I do want to note that your non-negotiables do not include your time, spent building your business foundation. So that is, you know, your messaging getting clear on who you serve your website, copy creating your offer, writing a sales page.

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All of that is super important, by the way, it doesn't include time spent serving clients. Your non-negotiables list are the actions you'll take every week to get in front of new people and to market yourself. And before you go, just know that marketing yourself is just a part of your business. It is as important to serving clients. It is as important of your business foundation. You do need to be marketing consistently every single week to get clients, to make a consistent income. That is the trick. That is the secret. You can never stop marketing and before I scare you away, because you were like, that sounds awful. There are ways to make it easier. So non-negotiables can include writing blog posts, and that can be for your own website or for other people's website. You could guest post , it can be pitching podcasts. It can be doing podcast interviews.

Stacie:

It can be creating your own podcast. It can be posting on social media. So I think most of us know this one, right? But on Instagram, on Facebook, even on Pinterest, right on Twitter, on Tik TOK, whatever it is, it can be writing emails. It can be growing your email list. It can be serving in other people's Facebook groups. So showing up and just answering people's questions, becoming known as the expert, it can be serving in your own Facebook group . So creating your own, it can be engaging on social media. So do note that is different than posting on social media. And that means going in liking other people's posts, commenting, making connections, depending on the platform, but it's the same kind of thing you are actually being social, right? It can be networking or setting up coffee chats with other people. And honestly, these are just a few, it can be so many others that I could probably record an entire podcast where I just list them all out, but we're not going to do that because that would be a little bit boring, but basically it's any marketing strategy that you want to stay consistent with overtime.

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Please note that was even a pretty full list and that wasn't all of them. You cannot do every single strategy. It's really important to choose the ones you enjoy and that have the most impact. And that's really what the non-negotiables are. You choose ahead of time, what you're going to do every week to market yourself. And the importance of this is you've probably heard me say it before, but that constraint and that consistency do the work for you over time. And it makes things so much freaking easier, which we'll get into in a little bit. I do just want to give sort of an analysis of where I started with my own non-negotiables because I think it can really be helpful. I was still working full time when I started with these, but just know I just decided, I decided these are the things I'm going to do every week to get in front of people.

Stacie:

I did them without fail. Like that was what I was going to do. If I was going to be on vacation, I scheduled them ahead of time. If I was going to be, if I knew I was going to have a really busy week say at work, I would schedule them ahead of time. So I was very planful thoughtful about doing these things every week, showing up every week, being consistent, or at least looking like I was being consistent because I had scheduled them ahead of time. Right? So when I first began as a burnout coach, what I really started doing every week and what really, really helped me grow my business was serving in other people's Facebook groups that was normally 10 to 15 minutes a day. It was not a huge time commitment. I would see someone post something where I thought I could help them.

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I have an answer I might interact if they, you know , commented back done, did not spend a whole lot of time, like trying to find a whole bunch of stuff to serve in. Like I just let it be easy, which go back and listen to the, let it be easy, right? Let it be easy. I can , I would send a weekly email to my email list. Now, of course, if you don't have an email list, that might seem a little bit silly. So if you want to go this direction where you start doing, you know , email newsletters, you need to have , a foundation under you to build your email list. So creating a freebie, creating an opt-in , doing something to get people onto your email list is important before you start this. But in the beginning I wrote a weekly email and I let it be easy.

Stacie:

I didn't over-complicate it. I would tell stories. I would tell them what happened to me that week. You can do all kinds of things. It does not have to be every single week that you're selling something. I think that's what scares people. They think my email has to follow the certain structure. It does not. I also, every week would post three times to Instagram. And then that would just automatic, like a post to Facebook business page through my planner only account . So three Instagram posts a week. And just later on, when I started my own Facebook group, instead of serving so much in other people's Facebook groups, I would ask two to three questions a week. I would schedule them out ahead of time. And then I would spend time in the comments during the week. The best part about this is that aside from the daily interacting and Facebook groups, I could schedule most of these.

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And I did schedule most of these to be done on Saturday for the rest of the week for the, for the week ahead. My Saturday mornings was my business marketing time. So I'd spend normally about two hours. I would schedule the three posts. I would write an email and I would even schedule the questions for my Facebook group. And I might add a couple of articles in like, just to keep it going and keep it interactive. So that was my list of non-negotiables that was it serving in Facebook groups, my own or someone else's one weekly email, three Instagram posts. And I do want to say this was after I had built my business foundations. Because when you're in the midst of sort of making your business stronger, let's say, so you want to have a freebie. You want to have your messaging really clear.

Stacie:

You want to, re-do your sales copy. You want to redo your website, copy, which, by the way, I don't recommend that you do this over and over and over and over again. But if you're in the beginning stages and you're getting all of that set up , you may not want to do like a non-negotiables marketing list, or you might want to keep it very small. Like you post one time a week, you know, get your foundation set. And then you can really focus on that marketing piece, especially if you're still working a full time . I do recommend you start marketing though. Very slowly. All right. So how do you decide what your non-negotiables are honestly evaluate what works for you and what you enjoy most? That's it? I think w e, w e tend to o ver-complicate things and we tend to have this thing in our heads where we think there is this secret, this formula, this process of doing something that is the correct process that is going to make us so much more successful, so much faster.

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It's going to help us grow overnight. We're going to have that 10 K month in two months, whatever. I'm just here to tell you that's not true. And I'll say it over and over and over and over again, because I just want you to know, like there's, if you're in the beginning stages of your business, there is nothing wrong with you. You just need to keep showing up. Even when no one's paying attention, you just need to keep showing up. Even when it feels like it's not working, you just have to keep showing up. You have to decide to keep showing up. What happens with most people is that two things. They try to work too hard. And so they burn out and they can't stay consistent and they stop because they're not getting the results because they can't stay school . Right. Or they just have this, this idea that things are not happening as quickly as they should.

Stacie:

And they give up right before it would have started to be easier right before people were going to pay attention. And I will say, I have built this very strong belief in my mind, which I think helps me keep going, which is my success is just around the corner, right? Like if I just keep going, I will get it. If I just keep going. And what if like tomorrow, the day that I post something tomorrow is the day that I get a new client. What if showing up on my story today is the day that it makes sense for somebody to sign up with me. You know, you just have to think that way. You have to think like this next thing could be the thing I don't want to give up. Now that I went off on a tangent. All right . So how to decide what your non-negotiables are.

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As I said, evaluate what works for you and what you enjoy most. You also want to be realistic with how much time you have each week. And I mean, it be realistic and decide in advance what you can easily commit to. Because I think as I said, so many of us, we want to be growing faster and thus, we want to commit to more because we think that's the answer. And then we burn out. We can't be consistent and you get frustrated. You get frustrated when you're overworking in a way that you don't. If you just do the things that come easy to you, you do them consistently. Now how to make sure they get done for you, highly recommend that you schedule them on your calendar, or you create a weekly checklist for yourself. For some people, it works to have them on your calendar for others.

Stacie:

You need the flexibility of deciding when they'll happen during the week, you just know you need to get them done. And I just want to say some of my clients really don't like the word non-negotiables because it feels a bit like punishment, but I encourage you to instead think about, non-negotiables like a commitment that you're making to yourself. You are deciding in advance what you're going to do every week to keep your business moving forward. And let me just say, there are non-negotiables that, you know, sometimes you're just not going to have control over not being able to do them. Like you might get sick, your kids might get sick or something at work could happen. That just completely wipes out your time, your energy, right. Things happen. That means you're not going to get your non-negotiables done. That's okay. Do not use your non-negotiables to beat yourself up, but you also need to be careful not to use every little thing as an excuse to , to not stay true to that commitment to yourself.

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I like to think of it. Like you've committed to seeing a friend, right? For lunch. Let's say you wouldn't just not show up for that person. Right. But you also wouldn't show up if you're sick, right. Or if an emergency happened, there does need to be a commitment there. And it needs to be hard to get out of the commitment if that makes sense. But you also want to allow for the grace of real word real-world circumstances, like occasionally being that priority, just note the word, occasionally, this should be sort of a blip on the radar. It shouldn't be an everyday thing that you can't get to your non-negotiables list, because if you're hardly ever able to finish your non-negotiables or get to them, you either have put too much on your non-negotiables list or you haven't made them a priority for yourself. You really have to know the difference between a valid excuse, like , and just, or a valid reason I should say.

Stacie:

And an excuse. There are valid reasons to not get to your non-negotiables. And then there are excuses because you're just like not in the mood, which is , that's not a great excuse. And this I think is where having a coach can really help to know the difference. And I just want to say, I really, truly, I credit my weekly non-negotiables for helping me stay consistent and grow. And part of that was taking away the expectations that things would grow quickly. And I instead just decided that I was going to choose to show up consistently in this way over and over and over again until it worked. And it's a really small tweak in mindset, but it makes a big difference. And I also just want you to know there's a good reason. This works so well with , with my clients and with myself, our brains thrive on routine consistency and habit building every week, when you stick to your non-negotiables, you're teaching yourself that you can keep promises to yourself, but you're also reinforcing the neural pathways of completing each of those tasks or strategies. So that in say eight weeks of doing it over and over and over again, you get better and better and faster and faster, and your brain doesn't have to work so hard anymore. This saves you so much time and energy over the long run that it helps you stay consistent easily without burning out in your business, grows from that.

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And very few people talk about this because it's just not that sexy. Everybody wants there to be a secret, but consistency over time is the magic sauce for making your business grow. And I just want to say it is so much freaking easier than running around, trying to find the secret or the formula to explode overnight, because it does not exist. It's so hard to wrap my head around that. I think we see people's success and we just expect, we think that it happened really quickly for them something I tell my clients to do. I haven't deleted my in the beginning , Instagram posts for my business. So I say, Hey, do you want to see growth? And what it kind of looks like when you're first starting out, scroll down to the very bottom of my Instagram and see what it was like as I was building, right?

Stacie:

I think it's good to see how much you can change from the beginning and how much you grow and how much like it did not happen overnight. It doesn't happen overnight. And many of my clients that work with me are not brand new to their businesses. They've been trying to figure it out for a while . And what's usually been in the way is one of two things and maybe both things, but it's the lack of belief that it's possible. Number one. And then the idea that it can or should happen quickly, because there's so much messaging from different marketers or business coaches out there that, you know, you're just missing this key thing. And when you find this key thing, everything's going to be great and everything's going to be easy and it will explode. I'm not saying that business can't be easy because it can, you can choose strategies.

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You love, you can love growing your business, but that does not mean it's going to happen overnight. Once you believe it's possible and you become okay that it's not supposed to happen overnight. And you understand that consistency is what you most need to grow. It just makes everything so much easier. Your patience with yourself and your business grows. And I just wish that I had known this at the beginning. I wish that someone had said like, just show up and maybe people do, but you just don't listen. Right? Which I'm going to do an entire podcast on why we fall for these kinds of things where it's like, you just need this one secret. Our brains love it. We so want to believe that that , that it's true. It's sort of like weight loss, right?

Stacie:

I hate this, but I used to be someone who was very concerned with her weight for a very long time. And I was the person who would fall for like the, the silly things that people say about weight loss for a long time. Now that is not me at all. I'm very eating. I'm very healthy at every size. I'm a totally different kind of person when it comes to that. But , for a very long time, I thought that there was a secret that I just didn't know that like would make me a different person, which totally makes me depressed talking about it now because I have a totally different viewpoint on bodies and everything else, but we're not going to get into that today. But what I mean by all of this is that we want there to be an easy way. That is human nature.

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That is why , you know, if you ever hear about like snake oil salesman, right? Cause that is why we fall for those kinds of things. We want there to be an easy answer. But the easiest answer is actually choosing to market yourself in a way that feels so good that it's easy for you to do it every week. And it is easy to stay consistent. And that you give yourself grace around that, that you make a realistic, sustainable plan for growing versus believing that you need to find this perfect way of doing it. That honestly just doesn't exist out in the world. The most perfect way is the way that works for you. And there is no way to avoid the somewhat not fun feelings of growth. Being slow. Sometimes of being a business owner is learning to be resilient with those kinds of feelings, learning to be resilient.

Stacie:

When people don't pay attention, learning to be resilient. When you know you're going to make this happen someday , it just doesn't quite look like what you want it to look like ultimately, but here's the thing you are going to make it. If you believe and you keep showing up and be consistent, you're going to do it, which is awesome. If you want to hear more about how choosing non-negotiables that best work for you can help you get more clients and actually enjoy growing your business. You don't want to miss my interview with my client, Julie, from happy mind guide, we'll be going live in my Facebook group on May 12th at 2:00 PM. Eastern, to talk about how she books clients without using social media, as her marketing strategy. This is so you're going to love it. It's going to be so amazing. So you can join us by going to Stacy mitchell.com/group and requesting to join.

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And I cannot wait to see you there. If you enjoy this podcast, I would love it so much. If you would either leave me a review on iTunes or take a screenshot of listening to the podcast on your phone and share it to your Instagram stories and tag me at Stacey Mitchell. It totally makes my day to know that people are out there, that they're listening, that they're getting value. And just know that if you're in this stage where marketing, isn't fun, you feel like you're overwhelmed. If you're running around, like nothing's working, everything is working. Just make it simpler for yourself. Choose the things you love to do. Show up consistently. You will grow. You will get there.

Stacie:

Have a great week. If you love this podcast and you want more, you have to check out. Stacey's burnt out to biz boss, Facebook community, where she shares more tips, training, and free coaching opportunities. Learn more [email protected] slash group. And don't forget to review, subscribe and share with a friend. We will catch you in the next episode.