Let’s talk self sabotage shall we?
I’m currently without internet (GAH!) an online service professionals worst nightmare and, having very recently moved there is no contingency and to say the 4g is shite is an understatement. Until I’m back up and running I shall be a coffee shop wanker (or go to my mums but then I just get under her feet)
I’m actually writing this by hand on a pad whilst sitting on my sofa. I was sat here waiting for a workman to come and as I was doing so I was reading a slimming world magazine, eating a chocolate bar and having a cup of tea. It got me thinking about how even looking at a recipe makes me hungry as well as how self sabotage is as prevalent in business as it is in our personal lives.
What could business self sabotage look like?
Putting all of your eggs in one or two baskets (i.e. only having a small number of high value clients and not diversifying your income) which means that it’s too easy to end up in that feast or famine cycle.
Clicking ‘remind me later’ on your laptop/PC updates over, and over and over again until you get caught with your pants down at the start of a presentation.
Forgotten to confirm the most up to date contact details with an awesome potential client and so appeared unprofessional when you discover this on or around the time of your discovery call.
Left your accounts until the last possible minute, realising you have misplaced something and panicking.
You are not alone
I can certainly hold my hands up to a variety of self sabotage techniques. I am capable of Olympic golds in the event titled ‘working IN my business instead of ON my business’ and don’t even get me started on people experiencing imposter syndrome. To some extent we all self sabotage a little. It’s pretty normal and honestly you have to remind yourself that perfection doesn’t exist, you really aren’t alone. That being said, it’s worth trying to limit it don’t you think? I certainly do.
For what it’s worth, my experience managing myself throughout my career and a variety of teams with wildly different people in has taught me one thing.
There is no one size fits all when it comes to self sabotage!
It could be your self confidence, your overall mindset, your personality type or the fact that you actually don’t really want it to be successful (One day I will share all about the business management position I was headhunted for only to discover that the business owner WANTED to go bust but that’s for another day) it doesn’t really matter because all of these can be addressed if you want them to be.
How do we stop self sabotaging?
Though people would love to share their ‘secret 3 step guide to stopping self sabotage’ or they bang on about their fool proof method to overcome this issue the truth is there will always be times that you do this.
No 3 secret tips or fool proof method works for 100% of the people that use it because, well, we are all uniquely twisted. I don’t see that as a negative thing either. If we all floated the same boat it would be a very lonely harbour.
As a virtual assistant or online business consultant (check out my post about that here!) I’m not immune to self sabotage even though I strongly believe I have the tools and tricks up my sleeve to deal with it. Let me share some of the small things I do to reduce the effects of self sabotage in my business.
- Automate what you can – trust me, it will mean so many things get done on time without you forgetting/last minute sending etc that it has the power to change your business life!
- Be honest with yourself about what you are looking for in your customers/clients – don’t bend the rules because you feel desperate – really weigh up the pro’s and cons of working with someone and don’t be afraid to say yes or no accordingly.
- Don’t stop nurturing potential clients and your extended audience just because you are doing well now. This is an easy one to forget when things are going good but you have to expect that your clients may evolve and not require you anymore – how will you combat that if you don’t have other prospects? So make sure your website/social media platforms and marketing reflect that you are very much still in business and able to help Joe Bloggs your ideal client.
- Schedule regular time to track your expenses/income and analytics. Log them all as regularly as possible daily or weekly and review it too – It keeps you accountable in your day to day because you have a real handle on whats coming in and going out and what is working for you and what isn’t.
- I would do myself a disservice here is if didn’t mention outsourcing. Bookkeepers/VAs etc. can be an absolute necessity – sometimes you have to start really small just before you feel ready but you will 100% notice your own productivity skyrockets when someone else is committed to getting those things off your to do list.
- Follow up! If someone has booked a call with you follow up to confirm the date/time and contact method so that you are all 100% clear then diarise it EVERYWHERE. (oh and use a blooming diary or calendar will you – paper or online whatever works for you just do it already)
- Check your bank accounts multiple times a day – you will a) get better at understanding your money and b) you will catch any dodgy or unnecessary transactions immediately. Really this should go hand in hand with #4
- Work on the deeper root of some of your self sabotage if it’s really negatively impacting your business. There are books, You-Tube videos, podcasts and even therapists and coaches out there to help.
I share openly about my lessons learned in business with my tribe? posse? gang? (I don’t really like any of those terms – what would you collectively call yourselves – I am no cult leader so followers seems a little dark to me but hey, give me time ;)) by email on a semi regular basis so, if you would like to have me popping into your inbox a few times a month then sign up here!
I would love to hear your experiences of self sabotage – feel free to drop me a comment – if you sign up to the emails then you’ll also be able to contact me directly if you need to chat about what’s going on with you and your business.
Thank you for your likes, comments and follows. It really does help with visibility for The Amy Johnson.
Thanks for reading,