This post is going to focus on you and your goals for starting a lifestyle or online business, in particular getting you to think exactly what success might look like from your perspective.
My goal is to provide you with some helpful tips for defining what success looks like for you and how you can avoid comparing yourself to others when you measure how far you have come.
So let's get started…
In a previous post I asked you to think about why you are considering a lifestyle business and to challenge yourself a bit further than just using the stock answer of ‘money'. However, regardless of what the outcome was of reading that article it is going to be very likely that money will come into the equation at some point, so how do you go about determining what you're trying to achieve in this regard.
Well, I'd suggest you start by thinking pretty big… after all wouldn't you like to think big and come up a little short than think small and always achieve your goal? I know what my answer is.
So, really take some time to consider what your financial goals are by looking at where you'd like to be in the future. Ask yourself what it would take to have the car, the house, the lifestyle you are seeking and any extras that take your fancy, do some research and get the facts about how much you might need to live the way you want to live.
Oh, and don't be surprised if you figure out that it's actually less than you thought! Got your number, okay great, onto the next step.
Now that you've got the big number written down let's start to consider what this means in smaller chunks. Firstly if you have an annual number in mind the first thing we should do is reduce this down to a monthly figure and then cut it down further to come up with a daily figure for what your lifestyle is going to need in order to be funded.
Let's take a look at an example:
A yearly income target of $36,000 breaks down to be $3,000 per month or $100 per day.
However I imagine that your number is a bit bigger than that, so here's another example you can think about:
A yearly income target of $360,000 breaks down to be $30,000 per month or $1,000 per day.
So depending on where you ended up, you could be looking at between $100 or $1000+ per day in order to have have the lifestyle you have always wanted, and this will either look pretty achievable or particularly scary (it all depends on your point of view).
And that brings me onto the next topic…
It can be very frustrating having sat down and created an overall vision for your financial future to suddenly realise that the number you are aiming for seems unachievable and I would hazard a guess that it's for this reason that so many people get started with building an online or lifestyle business but then give up when they don't magically make the progress they are aiming for.
Let's face it, no matter how good your training or the offer you bring to market is, you're not going to wake up in a few days and find yourself making $1,000+ per day and anyone that sells you something promising this does not have your best interests at heart. Now this is different to someone selling you a system that they themselves are using to make $1,000+ per day, there is no doubt in my mind that these systems exist, but it will require time and effort on your part.
So, how can you create a plan to get to your target?
Well, again it comes down to biting off smaller chunks and understanding what they actually mean.
Consider your target, how does that compare to what you are earning today? Is it similar, much larger or could it be less because your goal is to cover your costs but be your own boss?
Now, what about 10% of your target, or even 1% of your target, what does that look like?
With a smaller and easier to imagine figure in mind you can start to work out what you need to do in order to generate this type of income. If you are an affiliate you can apply some simple maths to figure out, based on your commission, how many sales a day you'd need to generate and with the right information at your fingertips you can determine how many people you'd need to refer to make that many sales, for example:
You are promoting an offer that sales for $17, of which you make 50% commission (minus any fees). For safety's sake let's say that you end up with $7 for every sale that you refer to the vendor, here's how that might break down:
Of course if you are selling your own product or service then you can keep a much larger portion of the sale price so these numbers need to be based on your own approach to an online or lifestyle business.
The key is to take the time to break this larger goals down into amounts small enough that it doesn't feel overwhelming for you. And at the end of the day this about you and your goals, what you want to achieve, not what anyone else is doing in their online or lifestyle business, just you.
No matter what you decide to do and the targets that you set for yourself it can be very tempting to compare your progress with others who are doing similar things. My advice to you is this, unless you know exactly what they are doing to generate their sales, there is no real value in comparing your progress to anyone else's and here's why:
You have no idea what it might be costing them to generate the numbers they are telling you about and this is key. It's very easy to say that you're generating $10,000 per month in income, however if it takes $9,000 of expenses in order to make that money then your profit is only $1,000. And the only way you can know for sure what these numbers are is when you do it yourself.
Of course if you're working with the right people then you are likely to get access to the details of how they are going about building their business each month so this can provide valuable insights into how you can approach your business. And by all means use others for inspiration when it comes to setting your own goals, however be realistic about what this means to you, after all most people who are in a position to teach their techniques to others have spent years perfecting them and it will take time for you to pick these skills up.
If you are interested in measuring your progress, then do it based on your results. Even if these results are small it's important to focus on what is going well and what is improving even if overall income is not going up e.g. you make the same amount of income this month compared to last month but your expenses were less, so your profit has increased. Be sure to celebrate every success, no matter how small they may appear, after all if you went from 1 sale last month to 2 sales this month, that is a 100% increase and if you can do the same next month you will make 4 sales, then 8 then 16 and so on!
Hopefully this post has helped you to focus on what success looks like for you when it comes to building an online or lifestyle business and also how you can take a much larger goal, whether it be financial or otherwise and break it down into smaller, more manageable chunks so that you can build a plan to achieve it.
In addition I hope my advice about how to focus on what you are achieving rather than others will help you to keep on track when it comes to measuring the progress you are making in your business. There's a lot more to cover with regards to keeping track of the numbers involved in running your business, but I will cover that in a future post, so keep an eye out for that and if you've found this useful feel free to add a comment or share with your friends.