If you’re a creative entrepreneur, chances are that you suffer from Bright Shiny Object Syndrome. It’s where you’re easily distracted by other opportunities and end up taking on way too many projects, and not completing any of them (or significantly deferring the ones you do manage to complete).
If you’ve done any of the following, chances are you’ve been hit with Bright Shiny Object Syndrome:
- signed up to online courses you’ve never completed
- joined Facebook communities you’ve yet to interact in
- bought software your business doesn’t need or you don’t know how to use
- gone to live events in the hope that you’ll learn that one thing that will help you get your business off the ground.
Want to know the best way to get your online business off the ground?
Stay focused, show up and do the work, consistently.
I’m a big sufferer of Bright Shiny Object Syndrome however, I’ve developed methods over the years to help keep me focused so I can work effectively and stay on track as best I can. In this post I’ll share one simple mindset shift that will help you to avoid Bright Shiny Object Syndrome so you can achieve your goals and make the impact you want to make in this world.
I was actually at a training a few weeks ago, and I came across a really simple tool that shifted my thinking about how to avoid getting distracted in business. This tool changed my mindset around how I work, and I really, really wanted to share it with you.
Is this you?
You’re working on project A. At the same time, you might be doing a couple hours of that each day, and then you get a little bit bored, so you work on project B. Oh, hang on. Let’s not forget project C. You’re working on A, a little bit of B, little bit of C, little bit more of A, and then a little bit more B.
Oh, gosh, I haven’t touched project C since last week or the week before. Better do a little bit on that one. I’ll go back to A and go back to B and go back to C, and then you finally finish the projects.
This could be over a three month period, for example, and then they’re all finished the same time. Bang, you get paid.
This is a pretty common way to how most of us work. We work on project A, B, C, A, B, C, A, B, C, all at the same time, and it takes us a while to get paid. Let’s say that that’s three months. All right?
Now let’s rejig that around and look at an alternative and how I recommend you work.
If, instead of working like that, we give all our focus or as much as we can, and I know other stuff gets in and there’s emails and there’s social media and all this other stuff that can get us off track, but let’s try and turn them off for a few hours and plough through project A until we finish it.
Bang, we get paid.
Then we can move on to project B, and maybe that might be 80% of your time and 20% you might be maintaining project A so it doesn’t all fall over. Then we get paid for project B. Then we work on project C, and then we get paid for project C.
You can then see the benefit of working like this…
Just say you’ve got a payday at the end of month one. Then you’ve got a payday at the end of month two, and you’ve got your payday at the end of month three, as opposed to just getting a payday at the end of three to four months if you worked on all three projects simultaneously.
When would you prefer to get paid? I think I prefer to get paid sooner.
How does this look in real life?
At the moment, you could say I’ve got multiple products and multiple services in my business, which isn’t ideal. However when you look at how my business has evolved over time, you’ll see that I actively try to work on only one project at a time to avoid getting distracted by bright shiny objects.
Let’s go back to 2014… I’d been running my existing eco-baby ecommerce business for 5 years but wanted to add an online program to support women to create a healthier home, so I created my Home Detox Boot Camp. In 2015, I added another online program to my suite, greenHOUSE Home Energy Blitz and while struggling with the workload around a busy family life with pre-schoolers, I took a few things off my plate. I sold my main retail business, so I could just focus on my eco-living programs.
If I had tried to do all of these at once, I actually don’t think I would have achieved anything. It’s just too much of a workload. Instead, I basically focused on one big project at a time and bedded it down before starting the next one.
As entrepreneurs we also need to remember that if we’re busy creating all these new things, we need to let some things go. Don’t forget that there’s always work maintaining what we’ve already created, so you always need to factor that in too!
Close some old programs that aren’t selling or put them on evergreen so they just sell automatically, whatever it might be,. But if you are just starting out, if you’re fairly new in business, and you’ve got all these different ideas, I really, really encourage you to just map them out and plan what to start first and what to do next when your first project is completed.
Think of the first one you’re going to achieve, then the second one, and then the third one. Please don’t get stunned by Bright Shiny Object Syndrome because you just defer when you’re going to get paid.
The earlier you get paid, the sooner you can reinvest the money into creating project B, and then reinvest the money to creating project C. But if you’re working on all your projects simultaneously, you’re just really all over the place. It’s really, really hard to get traction.
Over to you!
Are you working on projects A, B, and C all at one time, or are you really, really good with your focus and just stick with one and see it to the end? Share in the comments below which type you are. Also, if you’ve got any tips that help you stay focused and avoid Bright Shiny Object Syndrome, be sure to share them in the comments so we can all learn from each other.
I hope you got something out of this little tip to tweak your mindset and help you avoid Bright Shiny Light Syndrome. Just work on one project, one at a time, and then you’ll get to your goals sooner and make that impact that you want to make in the world much, much sooner. xx
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