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What to do when nothing you are doing is working.

It happens to everyone. You are not alone. You are pushing and pushing to try and make things happen in your business and your brand and you are coming up short over and over again. Doors are being slammed shut in your face, clients are dropping, you are having a hard time closing with potential clients. You have tried all different things to make this work and you are exhausted, you are emotional and you are done. You are doing the worst thing a small business owner can do, you begin to lose faith in yourself. You ever been here?

When things aren’t working I have heard two pieces of advice. One, push harder, keep pushing… try harder and give it your all. The other is to try something else, don’t put the weight of the world on your shoulders. But when it comes to your business what do you do here.

Here is my, what I think :), super solid advice. First you need to sit by yourself and think. Think about what is it that you are meant to be doing in this position, with this brand and with your audience. You need to really refocus where and what you are in your business. What is your vision. Not only your business’s vision but your personal vision within your business. I ask you to do this because the vision needs to meet to a clear cut end goal. Your ending goal cannot be to “be successful”. That is vague. A while ago I did a blog post on what success means to me. That is different for every single person. Your vision needs to meet your end goal of something that you are striving for. When you are envisioning what your future of your company is going to look like it makes take the path to it a lot easier and more accessible.

Next I want you to find someone you respect. A mentor if you will. This is someone that you respect for the results in which they have achieved. Maybe this person’s vision aligns with yours, maybe their personal morals and values coincide with yours. You also need to be able to respect how this person shows up in the world. What they give the world. I am not necessarily saying their volunteer commitments or their charitable contributions. I am more looking at the way they run their business. Do they treat their clients/audience with empathy and sincerity. Are they honest and transparent as a brand?

When you find this person and you have your vision, now it’s time to work. Ask them for their honest feedback, You need surround yourself with not only this “mentor” to look at your vision but people who you trust as contrary people in your life. My husband is my YES man. Everything I do is amazing and I am so smart and I can do any and all things. He is wonderful but I need someone once in a while to say, that vision is only going to get you here and you should be thinking a lot further than that.

Here is the way you need to go about asking for feedback. Let’s be honest, your business is your baby and you work on an idea and then you ask for feedback and someone comes in and gives you feedback that is far to critical and negative. It will knock you off your personal pedestal and gives you a shot to your ego, I want you to phrase your feedback questions like this. Say to them, “I want your open and honest feedback. I am fully capable of handling any feedback you give.” this means that you are ready to hear any and everything and you have decided to put your ego aside and you want to make this work from all points of view. OR you phrase it like this, “I have this vision, I think it could be really great but I need a little more help sorting it out. Would you mind taking a look with me.” That tells them, you like the idea that you have generated and you only need their opinions on tweaking it.

Okay, Now it’s time for the tough love conversation. I heard a quote once. I am not even sure who it was by or where I heard it but it said, Close some doors, not because of pride or incapacity or arrogance, but simply because they no longer lead somewhere. That is where we are now. If you spent time and tried to look for a vision and you cannot find it, change it. I want to make sure you are reading me right. I am not saying throw the towel in on your business. I am saying change your vision. If you keep knocking on the door of a certain opportunity and it’s not opening up. That opportunity needs to be passed and you need to find the next one. You may have missed two or three while you were banging on the door! You are limiting yourself because the vision you made three years ago is still in your plan, but it’s not working. Refresh and revamp your ideas. Make it work for you now.

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