If you look back in 5 years time and realise you’re in the same position as you are now, will you be satisfied? Or do you have bigger dream and a vision of a better future?
The hard part is a different answer usually requires a new behaviour. We need to shift our thinking and our actions to align with future us, not current us and that requires reshaping our habits, rethinking our friends, connections and influences and taking action on this new mindset.
Let’s break those 3 elements down:
Reshaping our habits
In 2018, I made the decision that I want to work for myself in the future. With a 1 year old daughter and a full work week, I didn’t have much time. So I had to adjust my habits in 2 key ways:
- Wake up early.
Despite my baby waking frequently in the night, I now wake up at 6:30am and I have 1 hour of time to focus on my work. I never thought I would be an early bird but I’m motivated by WHY I’m waking up. It’s during this time that I have written all these blog posts
- Leave the office at lunch.
Now, I go outside everyday and if it’s raining, I go to a cafe. I take my writing and drawing books and I draw all the graphics for the posts.
I have been doing this now for the last 2 months and it is becoming a habit. It gives me dedicated ‘business’ time which makes me think and feel like a business person even though I’m not being paid for it yet.
Rethinking our friends, connections and influences
The most powerful thing we can do to help realign our thinking is to surround ourselves with like-minded people.
Given my location constraints, I have expanded this definition to include influences. I now ‘hang out with’ entrepreneurial podcasts on my way to and from work. I stopped following gorgeous dessert makers on Instagram in favour of like-minded, inspiring entrepreneurs. I build relationships with people who are contracting or run their own businesses. All of this helps me to feel it’s possible, normal in fact. I can do it too and I will have heaps of support.
When we rethink our friends, connections and influences, it’s not about cutting off our existing relationships, rather reframing them. I have had to be really humble and recognise that there are people far further along in this journey than I am. I’ve also had to drop my ego and realise that I am never going to create something completely original in a vacuum – I need other people for all parts of the process. Embracing this allows me to see these people as tribe members rather than threats.
Take action on this new mindset
Our thoughts, friends and habits are nothing without intentional action. We have to be doing something toward our goal. These actions will inevitably start small but they will build momentum.
Start with some self-reflection to see where you need to develop. If your goal is to work for yourself, like me, I recommend Stephen Warley’s self-assessment challenge at Life Skills That Matter – well worth it.
So far, my key actions include:
- Wake up early and leave the office at lunch to make designated time for business
- Take stock of my current friends, connections and influences and actively reach out to those aligned with my goals
- Journal and walk as a practice to self-reflect and develop potential business ideas
- Write for 20 minutes every day and publishing a blog post once per week
These are small actions, but they compound. I’m starting to see results and I’m excited to review this again in 6 months and see how this has progressed.
Where do you want to be in 5 years? What new behaviour do you need to help you?