As the new year is knocking at our door, I’ve been thinking a lot about unhealthy patterns I have in my business. When you’re busy, busy it can be hard to step away and look at your career in a helicopter view and notice what’s actually going right and wrong. That’s why I’m helping you with sharing a few unhealthy habits to give up in 2018 to kick your career into overdrive!
1: Playing small
This is something I’ve noticed I’m doing. I love dreaming big, but when it comes down to it, I’ll always sabotage myself by coming up with a reason why I’m not ready to do something. Either my website needs a change, I still need to hire some more people, or I may not have the experience to handle something. Enough is enough. I’ve always been a firm believer in the “just go for it, and learn as you go”, and for some reason I’ve been allowing myself to slip back into my comfort zone the past year or so. No. If you’re not reaching for your stars, you’re wasting your own time. Next year, shoot for that big opportunity. You’ll figure it out as you go along.
2: Comparing yourself to competitors
If you’re anything like me, you’re following your competitors on social media. Either because of research, but probably mostly because you want to be liked and not following and supporting your competitors is “not nice”. Many of your friends may technically also be your competitors, because we tend to be friends with people with similar interests. But sometimes the jealousy can get a bit too much. It can mess with your self confidence to see your competitors achieve things you wished you were achieving. Next year, remember it’s ok to take some distance from people that are affecting your mental health. Mute them. Take some distance. And focus on your own stuff instead. You’ll feel much calmer and achieve more too!
3: Not charging what you’re worth
I’ve been reading ‘Lean in‘ by Sheryl Sandberg recently (I know, I’m late to the party), and one of the most astounding terms I’ve come across was something called the ‘gender discount’. Basically it’s the notion that if a woman doesn’t help a coworker they are seen as less favourable, and when men don’t do it, it doesn’t affect them negatively at all. I think women feel instinctively they can’t negotiate hard for their own gain, because they’ll be viewed as less likeable when they do. It’s really shaken me to my core, to be honest, because I feel that exact feeling every time I put together a quote. I’m always worried my clients will think I’m charging too much, despite them never actually saying so! This also goes for salary negotiations ofcourse! In the new year I’ll be attempting to ‘Bill like a Boy’ as one of Sandberg’s friends said. I refuse to be missing out on money because I’m scared of not being liked. Screw the patriarchy!
4: Not knowing where your money is going
Let’s be real: you can’t have another year of not knowing exactly where your money is going. We’re all grown ups now. We’re running businesses (and if you’re employed your life is basically a business too!), so we need to track exactly where our money is going and know if we NEED to be making that expense, or if we can go for cheaper options. In standard business practice we learn that revenue minus expense is profit. But why not try and turn that around and try and live by the rule that revenue minus profit is how much expense you can make? I’ll certainly be trying that technique next year.
5: Not taking enough rest
Guilty! I love love love my work, so I’m basically always working. If it’s not on my main company, I’ll be working on my side projects. I just have too many ideas and energy to go around. But I’ve also noticed that if I don’t take enough time off, eventually I burn out and I won’t be excited about anything anymore. That’s why in 2018 I plan to take regular weekends where I am off social media, and just relaxing, spending time in the real world. I hope you join me too. I always come back feeling inspired and ready to take on the world.
All photos via Unsplash, photographers: Demetrius Washington, Anthony Delanoix & Logan Nolin.