The Power of Baby Steps
This post was originally published April 2016 and was updated in 2019 and republished.
Mompreneurs have a unique vantage point that few others have.
It’s the opportunity to witness the power of small steps.
The growth of my business has kept pace with my daughter’s. I was still in the early stages of my business when she was born, and at that time I wasn’t completely confident in everything I was trying to achieve.
However, our babies master skills little by little and hit developmental milestones. If we follow that example in our business life--taking small steps that scare us—we nurture our confidence and growth from a place of ease and joy instead of fear.
I know you are thinking, can I really reduce my fear by taking small, scary steps? While it may sound counterintuitive, that is exactly what I am saying!
I often encounter clients who set big, challenging career goals, and while they are full of excitement at the beginning, they stop dead in their tracks the moment fear rears its ugly head.
Why are we paralyzed by fear?
There are a few reasons for this, but it’s largely to do with perspective. How we perceive long-term goals makes an impact on achieving them.
At some point it was decided that for something to be considered a long-term goal, it must be huge. Some goals are even referred to as BHAGs: “Big, Hairy, Audacious Goals”. This term describes a long-term goal so large that it changes the very nature of a business' existence. At the same time, we adopted the belief that the outcome of the goal is the only measure of success of failure.
Why have we set such constraints on career goals?
Change your perspective.
I have continued to take small, scary steps throughout my career, committing to reasonably pushing my boundaries a little further each month. Too often only big career goals are set, and the motivation to achieve them wanes too easily.
If we can change our perspective around what is considered a goal, we are much more likely to set, and even enjoy trying to reach them.
Here’s an example. If you set yourself a long-term goal of tripling your sales in a year, it might seem unachievable. After breaking it down into much smaller goals—such as the short-term goal to attend three new networking events this month—it doesn’t seem quite as foreboding. As you complete each of the smaller goals, your motivation stays high and you inch closer and closer toward that larger long-term goal.
It makes sense that when goals are out of proportion to where you are now, you may commit to a huge goal but not be able to follow through.
Think back to watching your child go from rolling over to sitting up. There were lots of small developments in between. Learning to sit helped develop the core muscles needed to walk, just as building your skills and resources to hit your big goal takes time and development.
Push yourself out of your comfort zone a little further every month.
By consistently doing things that you are afraid of, you build confidence at a pace that allows you to catch up to your striving. When I first started doing free discovery calls, I was a little terrified of pitching my coaching services. With practice it got easier and easier, until the fear vanished.
Shifting your perspective on goal setting, and using small powerful steps, will make your professional and personal growth feel easier. I have certainly noticed it changes the nature of how I do things and how much joy and confidence I feel when I do.
Approaching ourselves with the same nurturing touch we give our kids makes room for celebrating our growth too.
Liked this post? Here are three more you might also like to read!
This post was originally posted on August 15th, 2017 and has been updated.
A few years ago I immersed myself in lead generation strategies in a live training session with Paul Toby of Training Business Pros.
Ever since I’ve been sharing his tips with coaching clients. Now you can have it as well (watch my video if you want to skip ahead.)
Here they are...3 lead generation tips to boost reach and sales:
1. Your website
Google likes it when people stay on your site longer.
Time on site equals engaging content—valuable content., In fact, Google wants to see people staying on a page for at least 2 minutes - this plays into your page’s ranking on Google. Remember, Google ranks pages, not sites, so keep people on your homepage longer by inserting anchor links that take people further down the page, not to a different page.
2. Your blog
If you don’t blog already - start. Start now!
Blogging is important for bringing people to your website, keeping them on your site and generating new leads. Google likes new content, and the easiest way to continually put out new content is to blog at least once a week. New content leads to higher page ranking, and therefore more website traffic and leads. However, you need to write content people are searching for. Sure, your existing customers might regularly read your posts, but that won’t get you new leads.
Make sure your blog posts include the keywords and key phrases that people would use to find your site online.
Tip: Post on Google My Business. Your business should have a Google My Business listing (and if not, you can claim yours here). Once verified, you can post articles. If you think about it, Google controls how your pages rank in a search, and Google has the option for you to post articles via Google My Business, so it clearly makes sense for you to add your blog posts on Google My Business.
You can probably tell from the video above I like to vlog (video-blog) too, and that’s OK. Some people don’t like to write, orsimply don’t have time, so my tip is, don’t!
Instead, talk, and use a service like Rev.com which will transcribe anything you say at $1 a minute and they will do it within 24 hours. If you do use a service, note that it won’t be 100% perfect, so do a quick edit before publishing.
Alternatively, write a quick outline of what you want to say, making note of key points, arguments or opinions, and what you want the reader to walk away with and then get a ghost-writer. Of course you must read over other people’s writing to ensure it is written in the same way as you would write, and that the concepts they are writing about are accurate.
If writing is not your core competency, don’t do it. Small business owners and entrepreneurs can’t do everything, so stick with what you know best, and let someone else do what they do best - writing.
3. Have people sharing your work
I am a great believer of tools that save you time so I love this suggestion of using a simple WordPress plug-in called Shareaholic which makes sharing your content to social much easier.
If people can share your content easily to their own social networks, they are much more likely to do so, and a share is a mini-endorsement. If people see others in their online network sharing interesting topics, they are more likely to visit the page, and become a new lead.
So, there you have it - my tips, learned from Paul Toby, to increase your business reach and online leads! If you enjoyed this article, please share it with your network, and check out these additional articles that you might also find interesting:
Get Goaled! Coaching Mastermind
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