Mental Hacks to Make Your Business a Success from the Start: Part II

Mental Hacks to Make Your Business a Success from the Start: Part II

In Part I of this post, we looked at how everything depends on your Definite Major Purpose (DMP). Your ideal lifestyle can be achieved almost mathematically.

We also looked at how to identify your values and your vision. These things are important! In fact, people usually only fail because they do NOT take this mental work seriously enough.

To finish this up, we’ll look at the following:

  • how much money you need may be lower than what you think
  • why your goals are tools to put your vision into effect
  • how to keep in mind what’s at risk if you don’t achieve your goals
  • why “Daily Effective Action Items in Your Business + Time = Dream Lifestyle”
  • how 99% of success is execution
  • why actions create habits and habits create lifestyle
  • how to commit to your DMP
  • how track your progress by planning it, doing it, and repeating day after day

How Much Money Do You Really Need to Make?

As you think about your vision, you need to consider money. It’s why you’re starting a lifestyle business in the first place – to make money to do the things you want to do!

You have to ask yourself, “How much money do I really want to make?” How much do you really need to make? Based on your vision and your goals, it might not be as much as you think.

Keep in mind, this is how much you personally want to make. We’ll discuss setting revenue goals coming up but for now, think about a target number that’s meaningful to you.

Maybe it’s an extra $50K a year. For many people, that’s enough to quit their jobs and start out on their own. Maybe it’s more, maybe it’s less. Really spend some time thinking about the exact right number for you.

One way I’ve found useful is to complete this sentence:

I want to make (fill in the dollar amount) so that I can afford to (your deep down desired lifestyle).

This becomes your own personal financial goal. This is where your vision comes in handy.

Let’s say you want to buy a cabin in Colorado and go there anytime you want. And just for fun, let’s say it will take an income of $100K a year to make it happen. Your financial goal then looks something like this:

I want to make $100K a year so that I can afford to buy a cabin in Colorado and go there whenever I want to.

You could also view this as your freedom number. This could be the number you need to make so you can quit your job. It could be the number you need to buy your dream home. It could be the number you need to travel the world with your family.

You need to get clear on the actual number and why that number is significant. Don’t just write down $1 million because it sounds fun.

Make your number specific and meaningful to you.

Since we’re shooting for overall happiness here, making a generic money goal of say, $1 million is pointless. Everyone is different. If you live in a tiny house in North Dakota and don’t go anywhere, then working hard to hit a million bucks might not make sense.

If you want to live in downtown San Francisco and travel first class to fancy resorts around the world, then you need to set your sights pretty high.

Come up with a specific freedom number. Really think about it. If you’re married, talk about it with your spouse. Create a specific number and then back it up with how you arrived at that number.

Jot it down somewhere. You’ll need this as we start talking about what business to choose and the actual revenue that can be generated from that business.

Create Specific Goals Based On Your Values

A goal is a dream with a deadline Napoleon Hill

What is the secret weapon to making your lifestyle business work? Goals of course!

Yep, no shocker there.

By now, you should know your values. You have your vision.

Now it’s time to set goals based on those two things.

Then, and here’s the kicker, if you don’t achieve your desired lifestyle, it’s really because you didn’t achieve your goals.

If you look at goals as tools to use to reach your dream lifestyle, you’ll take them seriously and work on them every day.

It’s important then, that you set really effective and targeted goals. Goals that you can make real progress with every day. You want these goals to be big but not too big.

It’s sometimes easy to get super optimistic and put up crazy goals like $10 million in your first 6 months.

You need to be excited, but that isn’t the point here.

Simplicity and the ability to actually achieve your goal is the point. You want to feel like you’re making real progress and you do that as you baby step into it.

You need to set a money goal.

Actually, you’re going to set two money goals. Your first goal will be your annual income goal that you want to make in your first year of this business. Your second goal will be the amount you want to make in your first month. Be optimistic but only if you can back it up with really making it happen.

In my first month, I set the goal of getting one new client. I ended up getting three! But it’s only because I was hustling and speaking with everyone I knew. I worked hard to hit my goal.

What’s At Risk?

As you think about your values, vision, and goals, start to think about what’s at risk. This could be just another nice, happy blog that you’re reading and maybe you figured you’d give it a shot. But until you actually do something, this is all you’ve done.

You need to do more though. You need to think about what’s at risk.

If you continue with your life right now the way it is, where will you be in 5 years? 10 years? 30 years? Will you be any closer to your dream lifestyle?

My overarching purpose with Family Rocketship is to liberate you. I can supply the information but you’ve got to do the work.

Right now, let’s do another exercise.

Write out everything you don’t like about your current situation. It could be having to sit in traffic every day. It could be not having enough money to pay the bills. It could be lots of things!

Now, look at your list and be super honest with yourself, if you continue on the path you’re on, will any of these things go away? Will they get bigger? Will your life just get more sucky? Chances are good it will.

Simon Sinek, author of Start with Why said once that “what you do simply proves what you believe.”

If you believe that the only way to make money is to sit in traffic everyday and go to a sucky job, then that’s what you’ll do.

If you believe that you can make all of the money that you want and need through your own efforts, help others along the way, and be able to live your dream lifestyle, then that will be your experience.

Your actions directly reflect your beliefs. Think about what you do on a daily basis. Is it making you happier? Is it leading towards your dream lifestyle?

Think about it! This is your life. What’s at risk? If you don’t start today, what will your life look like tomorrow? This is kind of deep stuff I know but all part of the mental side of things when building your business.

How to Take Effective Daily Action

With your overall Definite Major Purpose in mind, you’ve already identified your values, created a vision, and set goals.

Now your task will be to break it all down into weekly and daily goals.

Then, with these mini-goals in mind, you can break them down further into the most effective action items. This becomes your daily to-do list.

As you work through your to-do list each day, you’ll be getting closer and closer to achieving your DMP.

This is where most people fail. Most people can see the end goal. They can create a vision and even set effective goals.

The magic happens at the action item level. They don’t complete them. They get distracted. When they don’t complete them, they get discouraged thinking it’s too hard.

It’s right here, at this level, which separates successful people from unsuccessful people.

Can you see how if you do enough of your daily action items, you’ll make your business a reality? It’s mathematical!

Remember our formula? It looks like this:

Values + Vision + Goals + Action + Commitment = Dream Lifestyle

However, at a closer look we can see that’s it really looks like this:

Values + Vision + Goals + Daily Action Items + Commitment = Dream Lifestyle

Now think about each act you do on a daily basis and evaluate if it’s bringing you closer to your dream lifestyle.

Did you network with some key contacts? Did you start a new ad campaign? Did you make any sales in your business today?

So let’s look at the formula again as it should be:

Values + Vision + Goals + Daily Effective Action Items in Your Business + Time + Commitment = Dream Lifestyle

Notice I added the word, “effective” and “in your business.” It’s not enough to simply clean your desk and straighten your bookshelf. You need to take effective action.

Everything you do is either going to bring you closer to or further from your dream lifestyle.

Make a sale? One step closer. Watch TV instead of doing some marketing? One step back. Run a successful Facebook Ad campaign? One step closer.

Again, if you take enough forward steps, you’re going to make your dream lifestyle a reality. It’s math!

Make today count. Then make tomorrow count. Then the next day and the next. Work hard to create a streak of days that count.

When you do this, you’ll build up momentum and it will get easier and easier. Just like an old locomotive train, it may be slow at first, but once it gets going, it’s hard to stop!

I know it may seem a bit crazy to break everything down to every single act but we can’t really escape it. If you’re kind of a slacker like me, just make sure you make more good choices with your time than bad choices. Keep moving forward and you’ll get there.

Make it so that your future self will look back and thank your past self.

The entrepreneurs I know who are living their ideal lifestyles have their past selves to thank. They took solid effective action and with time, it dumped them out into a great place.

Really think about it! What do you really want? Do your actions reflect that?

You might say you want the dream house on the beach but are you actually doing something every day to make that happen?

Your actions are like a completely honest mirror that reflects your beliefs. If you want something bad enough, you’ll make it happen. You’ll find a way. Again, what do you want? Now ask yourself, what are you going to do about it?

Do one action item and then the next and then the next. Keep doing them every day (take Sundays off for family time).

Work hard and don’t stop. You’ll quickly see how each day was either a success or a failure. You either knocked out those action items or you didn’t.

If you have enough successful days in a row, you’ll hit your goals. If you hit enough of your goals, you’ll hit your DMP. If you hit your DMP, you’ll be living your ideal lifestyle.

And that, mi amigo, is when life gets awesome.

It’s All About the Execution!

First, let’s talk about what it means to take action.

For this stuff to work for you, you must do something. Don’t overthink it. Just do it.

Just read what successful people have done and do it yourself. Do what they do and then have what they have. It seems pretty simple, right?

A while back I was in my weekly Skype meeting with my good friend and business associate Pawel. I asked him why more people don’t start their own businesses. I mean, all of the information is out there!

What he said stuck with me. He said:

“99% of it is execution. All of the info on how to start a successful business is out there. Only a few dedicated people will actually execute on it and make it happen.”

Anyone can start a lifestyle business. Correction, anyone that’s willing to hustle can start a lifestyle business. It’s all about the execution – the actual doing of the thing.

Jack Canfield, author of The Success Principles said, “Do 5 things everyday towards your goal.”

I think this is perfect advice. But I’ll amend it just a bit to say, “Do 5 effective, business-related things everyday towards your goal.”

The little things that you do each day, the behaviors that you have are your habits. Your habits either empower you or they weaken you.

For example, doing 100 pushups every morning helps your overall health. Smoking 3 packs of cigarettes a day? Well, that will actually kill you.

With every single act, you’re helping yourself or hurting yourself.

In business, the people who make it are the ones who take focused, effective daily action toward their goals. For this information to work for you, you’re going to have to change some habits you currently have.

Maybe instead of watching ESPN, you read a book on creating systems for your business. Instead of hitting the snooze button 17 times, you get up early and take on online course about how to outsource effectively. Maybe instead of spending hours trolling on YouTube, you make some sales calls.

When you skip ESPN every day and opt for the business book, it creates a new empowering habit. That new empowering habit plus time and repetition results in your desired lifestyle. It’s pretty simple really.

If you hold a microscope to it, it all boils down to your everyday actions. Each one is either successful or unsuccessful. Each act either moves you forward or moves you backward.

When you do enough successful acts over a repeated amount of time, you build a successful habit. It’s the successful habits that will catapult you to exactly where you want to be.

Think about what you do on a daily basis. Are you working towards a new life or not?

Be honest & get specific.

Look at your everyday actions. It requires some mental effort but it makes all the difference. I told you we were going to have to do some mental work!

To get started, you don’t need to get crazy with any spreadsheets or notebooks or anything. Just find some time at the end of the day to think. Turn off the TV. Hide your phone. Find a quiet place and just think about your day.

Did you move closer to your goal or not? What did you do well? What could you have done better that day? What set you back? Then commit to yourself that you’ll do better the next day.

Your daily actions build habits and your habits will create new patterns in your life. Do you see how it all boils down to what you do – every action you take? I know it may seem a bit tedious at first but this is the mental work that successful people do.

This is actually an important part to creating your lifestyle business.

Just remember this: Actions create habits and habits create lifestyle.

Actions create habits and habits create lifestyle

100% All-Out Total Hardcore Commitment

So far, we’ve talked about your values, vision, and setting effective goals. We’ve even talked about the all-important concept of taking effective action. None of that will matter if you don’t commit to it all.

When thinking about building your own business, you’ve got to treat it like a marriage. You’re going to be working this thing for literally years.

It’s different from mowing lawns or selling lemonade like you did when you were a kid. This is the path that’s going to help you live your ideal lifestyle. You’ve to got to commit it. You’ve got to do what it takes.

In our case, my wife and I decided we were going to go all in. We burned our ships as they say. We decided we couldn’t make it by trying to maintain our Orange County lifestyle.

What we did next was kind of crazy.

We literally sold all of our stuff! Our rule was, if it didn’t fit in the car, it didn’t come with us. We did get a little 5’ x 5’ storage unit for our wedding photos and stuff like that but basically, we just went for it.

We first went up to Seattle for a year where we rented a furnished house.

After that, we went to the San Francisco Bay Area for another year. While there we lived in a small 2 bedroom apartment. Because we didn’t want to waste any money on our temporary living, we literally slept on air mattresses.

I know even some of our friends didn’t quite understand what we were doing. In fact, one of our friends insisted that we needed a TV and dropped off his TV for a while. We gave it back to him shortly after that. We just didn’t care because we were committed to our vision. A TV is a huge distraction.

Once we moved to Cozumel and our friends & family started seeing the photos we were putting up online, then I think it started to sink in.

We weren’t on vacation, we were actually living there. After 2 years of sacrifice and admittedly weird living, we were now living our dream lifestyle.

Give Up Something Good for Something Better

The whole theme of Family Rocketship is creating your dream lifestyle through a business that you create and grow.

To do this, you’re going to have to sacrifice some things. As I understand it however, sacrifice can really be defined as “giving up something good to get something better.”

When you look at it that way, it’s really not that bad.

Imagine giving up a little TV time now in exchange for swimming with dolphins. Imagine giving up a little social media time to get to do a world tour with your family. Imagine giving up your bowling night, to buy your new dream house. Imagine skipping eating out so much to be able to quit your job.

I could go on but I think you get the point. Give up whatever you need to now to take action towards where you want to be.

Because your personal situation is different from mine, you have to answer these questions yourself.

  • Can you achieve what you need to where you live?
  • Do you need to move to another place to make it happen?
  • Do you need to reach out online or in person to key people that could help you?
  • Do you need to sever some relationships to be able to push forward?

Remember, any sacrifices you make now are tiny in comparison to what’s ahead of you. Your future self will thank you. I promise. I know I’m grateful to the past Sean who put in a lot of work to make it happen.

Whatever it means for you to grow your business, you’ve got to commit to it. Wake up early. Stay up late. Sell all your crap and move if you have to! Do what it takes!

Think about what Abraham Lincoln said, “Commitment is what transforms a promise into reality.”

Now commit that you’ll go through the steps, create your business, and begin living your dream lifestyle.

Track Your Progress

In the Action portion of this chapter, I gave this formula:

Daily Effective Action Items in Your Business + Time = Dream Lifestyle

If you stick to this, you’ll be a success. But, you need to also track your progress. Entire books have been written on this subject. I’ll make it really simple.

Here’s what you do:

  • Write up your plan
  • Review it and make sure it’s really achievable
  • Do it
  • Cross it off your list
  • Repeat

And that’s it!

If you do that enough times for enough days in a row, your business will be a success.

How you actually do it is up to you. I personally use Asana to keep myself organized. I also use an old-school calendar where I write out everything. There’s just something about crossing stuff out that gives me a sense of accomplishment.

How often you look at your plan is up to you. I like to look at the month ahead and mentally map it all out. Then I break down the projects I’ve got into weeks and what I need to do each day. Like I said above, I try to make sure what I’ve got is really achievable.

I’m an optimistic person but I know I can’t write an entire book in one day so I make sure I plan accordingly.

Think back to a time in your life when you were the most successful. I’d be willing to bet that you somehow tracked your progress.

Maybe you used a calendar or checklist or even an app. If you’re not already, get in that habit again. Plan your work and track your success!

Just Get Started Dude!

I’ve now reached over 3500 words with this post alone. I’ll stop now. But I’ll leave you with this:

If you care about yourself and your future lifestyle, please work hard now. Your future self will thank you for it.

I promise!


This is part of an ongoing series of posts all pulled from the book: The 60-Day Entrepreneur – Create Your Own Lifestyle Business, Scale Your Income, & Live Life on Your Terms

For your own free e-version of this book, click on the image below60 Day Entrepreneur