You’ve heard it all – you’ve got money blocks, your mindset is stopping you, you aren’t thinking abundantly, negative thoughts drag you down, you create your own reality…
I could go on.
I hate this stuff, for the most part.
**Hot Tip. If you are not getting clients it is, 99 times out of 100, NOT because you have whatever a ‘money block’ is – it’s because a) you’re not pitching enough, or, b) your offer sucks.**
Not that you should try to avoid shooting yourself in the foot if you can manage it, or that, generally, a positive outlook makes things easier, or even that often we DO fail to do things we want to do because we’ve got some head junk messing us up.
That’s all true.
But it’s not very useful, and it’s often, not totally accurate. Watch this 6-minute video all about what happens when the thing stopping you ISN’T a limiting belief, and how to work around it anyway.
I want to reiterate one point in a little more detail before we get into the how-to section of this post.
Constraints are not Limiting Beliefs
Here are a few examples of constraints that are NOT limiting beliefs:
Limited Time. Everyone gets 24 hours a day, around 8 should be devoted to sleep and if you’ve got a day job, a family, school etc – you have to work around those things.
Limited Money. It’s not untrue that you usually have to spend money to make money, and that throwing money at problems very often makes them go away, but most of us are not overburdened with worldly wealth and have a finite amount to use.
Heavy Competition. Generally, it’s better to be working in a crowded market than a totally empty one (validation, yay!) but if there are a lot of people doing what you do better or less expensively or both, then you have to deal with that.
Lack of Skills / Knowledge. I tend to believe that anyone can learn pretty much anything, but it requires some of the OTHER constraints on the table – time and money. There is also a hard limit to how much you can improve at something you REALLY suck at and hate doing.
Institutional / Systemic Oppression. This is really its own WHOLE kettle of fish, and I am not going to get too much into it here, but the fact of the matter is people will treat some people differently based on their gender, race, sexual orientation etc. etc – and as a business owner operating alone you mostly can’t stop them from doing so. This is one of the areas where it’s the MOST important to have a way around the whole limiting belief thing because it’s cold comfort that you probably didn’t want to do business with those ass-hats anyway.
Okay, let’s move on to how to deal with a constraint.
Start by Getting Clear on What You KNOW.
The real key to navigating a constraint is getting really, really clear on a couple of things:
- What the outcome you want is. For example, this might be a landing page that people can opt in on, a way to collect payment, regular traffic to your website. You can’t solve for a solution if you don’t know what the solution is. Don’t think about the PROCESS at this point – just what, in a perfect world, would be happening.
- The REASONS you are having a problem with it. This might be that you don’t know which technology is best, you can’t pay for a paid service, you don’t have a reason for someone to opt in. You might not know all of the reasons – that’s fine, come up with as many as possible – these are the things you are going to try to fix, solve or move around.
- The things you can’t change. You can’t change the number of options that are out there, or that there are a lot of competing options out there, or that you only have $100 and 10 hours a week to put towards things. These are your constraints, and they are the rules you have to play by.
- The things you CAN change. (More on this below!)
Once you’re clear on these elements, you are operating from a place of strength rather than floundering for a solution that seems hazy, and you can make choices and try things that have the highest possibility of success.
Once you know your outcome, what’s holding you back, what you can’t change and what you can – it’s time to play with some of the elements a little bit. (And this IS play!)
What you CAN change
That you CAN change is sort of… everything else. Everything else is kind of a nebulous statement – but it’s important to start thinking about more and more things that you CAN turn to, draw on and use to get you to the outcomes that you want.
Your support – can you draw on relationships for help or barter for skills? Most of us have a bank of “social capital” that we invest in by helping others, making a withdrawal and asking for help can be a great way to move forward.
Your goal – maybe what is causing you a problem right now is something that should be pinned for later, and you need to reprioritize? Is there a goal that is easier to achieve that would get you closer to where you want to be?
Your time management – do you need to spend more of your business time learning? Networking? Promoting? What can you shuffle around to make time for this?
Your technology – can you use something else to solve the problem? What is the SIMPLEST way to get what you want? What do you have at your disposal to help make it happen? Could you get away with just sending Paypal invoices? Do it.
Your network – do you have ENOUGH of a network? Maybe you need to get more people on team you.
Think about your outcome, and the problem and totally ignore the things you CAN’T change, and see if there is a combination of problems, outcomes and things you can change that will get you to where you want to be.
Here’s a worksheet you can use to help you organize your thoughts around this process.
Click here to get the worksheet now! (NO OPT-IN! Sweet, right?)
I’d love to hear what problems you’re working on right now – and if you’d like a hand, leave a comment on this post! I’ll be hanging around to help if I can.