Focusing when you are a multi passionate entrepreneur is H-A-R-D. There are just so many cool things that you could be doing, that you can wind up spreading yourself so thin that nothing gets done!
In today's post I am going to cover some great information and resources as well as some strategies which I have used that have helped to tame the multi-headed monster that is my business.
What Is A Multi-Passionate Entrepreneur
I first heard this kind of entrepreneurship being called “multi passionate” from Marie Forleo. She is super successful AND does fitness, business, a membership site, videos, is on Oprah and generally a great resource for people like us!
My favorite thing she says here is that you have to TRY it to make sure you like it, rather than just thinking about liking it.
I had this experience years ago in my personal life. I decided that I would do decoupage. I watched videos about it, bought books and supplies and generally immersed myself in everything I could know about it. Then the day came and I got all that stuff together and sat down to start.
I had bottles and paper and glue and sparkles. I had the knowledge of how to do it. I was inspired and ready. And I hated it. Not sort of hated but despised every second of it. It was messy and hard and not fun for me at all. Sigh.
So I wasted all that time, money and energy because I hadn't DONE anything. Had I just tried sticking a piece of tissue paper on a bottle early on, I would have known right away that that form of artistry was not for me.
Learning about business or marketing is that way too! It is great to research taking pictures or writing copy or making videos, but the actual implementation is another matter. I like to make recorded videos so I do that. I don't like doing live videos on Facebook so I don't do that.
Note… this is not to say that something you finally love doing will be easy at the start. If you would like to read more about this, check out this post… Everything Sucks The First Time You Do It
You Can Do Anything, But Not Everything
I LOVE this quote by David Allen (the Getting Things Done Guy) promo link. Listening to him talk about how to get things out of my head onto paper was maybe the most pivotal moment of my life.
I am good at lots of things (as I am sure you are!) And as an entrepreneur there is no one sitting on my shoulder yelling at me when I get off track.
But being good at lots of things and not focusing on a few things is a recipe for disaster.
For years this was my problem. I hired coaches and got business partners and tried all kinds of things to make money. All of it sort of worked, but none of it worked well.
It was only by finding a way to umbrella all of the things that I liked into one that I became super successful and happy!
Strategies For Focusing As A Multi Passionate Entrepreneur
If any of this sounds like you, right about now you might be thinking, great, I have heard all of this before, but where is the help?!?! How can I GET MORE FOCUSED for fuck's sake!
Here are some of my top tips for finding focus…
Immerse Yourself In Knowledge
You may already KNOW what you should be doing. It may just be that doing it is getting a little stale.
For example, every December I write a blog post every day for a month (business days only now that I have little ones). I KNOW that blogging more makes my site more popular and brings me more business. I even like blogging…BUT it gets boring when it is just a grind.
So this year I not only wrote posts but I listened to blogging podcasts and read “income reports” posts and updated my google analytics. I made Pinterest boards about blogging and read the suggestions of people who seemed to be excited about blogging.
And something that is a little “normal” and “boring” to me became sexy again. I got a ton of great new ideas and really fell back in love.
Before you decide to try something new, look around and see if there was something that used to work for you. Maybe it is direct mail or networking or Facebook.
Now find at least 10 great resources about that thing. It could be Podcasts or a great speaker or a book from the library. Read blog posts about it and start a Pinterest board with the best bits you find.
I find that if I immerse myself with people who love what I am trying to do, I get in the same mindset and everything is easier.
Then Put Yourself On A Learning Diet
I see a lot of people reading and watching and buying courses about a million things. They are getting such great hits of endorphins from all that learning that it is addictive.
Instead of flailing around learning a whole bunch of unrelated things, make yourself a deal. Pick one thing to buy learning about and then implement that idea. See if it works or helps and don't let yourself buy anything else until it is either a YES! I love this thing or a Hell No, this thing is not for me!
As entrepreneurs we get such a rush from learning new things that it is easy to forget to implement or try those new things out.
THIS is the one thing that has made the most difference to my business (and my sanity). I do month long sprints about something.
For example, this is planner month. I am focusing on doing my planner pages, strategizing about what new ones I want to do and inhaling information about Etsy, which is where I sell the majority of my planner pages.
Last month was blogging month and next month may be something else or may be an offshoot of one of these things.
But whatever I pick I HAVE to focus on it for a month!
Now, don't get me wrong, I don't start the month all rosy and happy. In fact, focusing on planners this month was not on the top of “fun things to do list”. But it was on my “best thing to focus on now” and “this could make me money in the long run” lists.
I am on day 4 of planner month and something has kicked in. I am getting excited about planners, thinking about pages I could make or how to make the ones I have better.
The thing about doing a month at a time is that it doesn't get me down. I can choose to embrace it and try or just coast along and “waste” a month and nothing catastrophic will happen in my business other than I will get to pick something new next month.
But what do you do if you have a great idea during a month?
If I have great ideas about things other than that's month focus I write them down on a list….
Do It On Paper Not In Person
You are just sitting there, minding your own business and you get a great idea. You start obsessing about it and then you find yourself on Godaddy buying a domain name or on Facebook making a new group. You are FIRED UP about this and KNOW that it will be the turning point in your business.
You have fun of starting something new and it is great…. until….
You realize that it is not great, it is just another thing to do. It might not even match the rest of your business. Or it might just be a flash in the pan that takes you off track of other things you should be doing.
But ignoring it won't help, if you don't DO something about it, it will take up all your head space.
So write it down.
Yep, just start fleshing it out on paper. Write the top things you would need to do in order to launch this new thing. Will you need a website or a Facebook page, write it down. Do you need a logo, scope out all the designs and colors you might like, write it down. Will you need to source materials, write down what you might need.
Get it out of your head and onto a piece of paper (or two or three).
And then, when it is not taking up all your head space, take a day. See if it is still pecking at you. If it is, you will have the start of a great plan to make it real. If it just wanted to see the light of day, but it is not your idea, then you will feel relieved and ready to move on to something else, knowing that it is still there, on paper, if you ever want to think about it again.
Doing it on paper instead of in real life is like when you feel the need to buy something. Maybe you REALLY want a new pair of shoes or bag or a notebook. You can hardly stand it and think that your life will change as soon as you get that thing.
Compulsive shoppers can fix this by “fake shopping” for it. They can research it online, find the prices and then put it in a shopping cart and NOT BUY IT. Your brain does not know the difference in the same way that if you do your idea on paper, your brain thinks you are working on it!
Resource: Find out more about Wicked Good Ideas!
Multi Passionate Entrepreneurs Wrapup
Whew, that was a LOT of information about how to stop making yourself crazy. And you may love all of it, or you may love none of it and think it is bunk. But if you have read down this far, you know that there is something going on that is making you unhappy in your business.
No one reads almost 2,000 words about a subject and doesn't have at least some reaction… love, hate, enlightenment… something.
So if you have a question about your business and want to find out more about how I can help you make a plan for your passion, check out my Work With Me page today!