As a business owner - big or small - we all have our own definition of success. It could be fulfilling a number of projects per year, becoming well-known in your industry, or even making the Forbes 30 Under 30 list (guilty). The biggest mistake I see other biz owners making is saying the following statement and dropping the ball:

"Man, I'd really like (insert dream here). I'm just going to put this out into the Universe and see what happens."

Okay, cool. I'm pro-Universe. I get you. But like, what are you doing on your end to help fulfill that dream? It's kind of like trumping the "if I build it, they will come" statement with "if I say it, it will happen."

Let's face it; we're all guilty. Blame it on the woo-woo movement or our star-crazy millennial habits, but our personal connection to a higher power might be hindering, not helping, our business. Instead of thinking up awesome business gains and letting them "stew" up there in the stars like Aunt Cathy's beef soup, why not take those dreams and break them down into actionable goals so you can actually achieve them? From where I stand, the street of dream crushin' goes both ways. 

There is a fine line between putting faith in the Law of Attraction and relying on it to the point where nothing gets done. 

Don't get me wrong, it's important to verbally manifest your desires. But that's just the beginning. Let "the universe" know what you want and then prove how much you want it by doing the work.

Here are a few tips Caty and I have put into practice in order to find balance between outside forces and inside hustle. You need both to succeed.

1. Get your systems down.

Want 12 projects per quarter? Draw out a chart with 12 slots and then beside it, make a list of anything and everything that needs to be done before you can fill even 1 of those slots. Are your proposal templates up to date? Is your client on boarding process super smooth? Have you mapped out your schedule if multiple projects overlap? Make sure you are truly ready to receive what you're asking for; you could be the one causing the roadblock. 

2. Open all the doors.

How do you expect clients to hire you if there's only one tiny button on your unresponsive website that allows them to contact you? Make it super simple for people to find you, inquire, and hire you. Are all of your links up to date across all platforms? Is your website user-friendly? Are your social platforms a nice balance between engaging content and promotional material? Spend some time looking at everywhere your brand lives in the eye of your customer. Would you contact your business for more info?

3. Check yourself before you wreck yourself.

So many headaches caused by dealing with non-dreamy clients could be solved with solid branding and identity design. If you're wanting to expand your target reach or remap your customer base entirely, ask yourself if the image, tone, and story you're putting out is attracting the right kind of people. We work extensively with our clients to ensure that both your insides and outsides are placing you in front of the right customer. Learn more about what we do here.

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- Erica

Dang, guys. You know those articles you read that have you head nodding and amen-ing right through from beginning to end? Jess Willingham killed it in her newsletter this morning. She completely inspired this post. Check her out.

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