“A goal without a plan is just a wish.” Antoine de Saint-Exupery
For the first three years, I failed miserably.
The next three, things started taking off.
And in the last year or two, everything has shifted.
The way I think about running my business has changed dramatically.
I’ve changed my focus from tactics to strategy.
I no longer focus on just selling an ebook, but instead building a solid business.
However, please keep in mind that this doesn’t give you the license to try to get things perfect, because you won’t.
We all have to start somewhere . And in this article, I share what’s going on with me and my business right now.
When I started my online journey way back in 2006, I was scared.
I wanted to be anonymous and just make a few dollars. I wanted to live my life quietly in the shadows.
And this mindset has plagued me for years. Even when I started Wake Up Cloud, I was afraid of really putting everything into it.
I was afraid of failure. And I was afraid of success.
I wrote a few ebooks, I wrote articles, but I didn’t want to share what I truly believed in, because I didn’t want to make enemies.
But all of that has changed in the past year.
My business and life is constantly evolving. And I enjoy sharing what I discover with you, because the more I grow, the more I can help you grow.
So what’s the big shift in all of this?
The Big Lesson
The big lesson is to think bigger.
And once you think bigger, to think even bigger, because I know I’m nowhere near where I could be.
It’s hard to put this lesson into just one word or concept, but the lesson I’m talking about is a blend of:
- Thinking Big. It’s having the courage to think big. To set an audacious goal and then go after it. It’s embracing being uncomfortable. And moving forward anyway. It’s about growing as a human being, and it’s about creating more value in the world.
- Clarity. It’s also about clarity. About knowing where I want to go, who I want to help, and how I want to do that. This doesn’t happen by analyzing. It happens through doing. And I’ve been at this for many, many years now.
- Commitment. And finally, it’s about commitment. It’s about thinking HOW, instead of WHY NOT. This is not about if I’m going to get better, but about how I’m going to do it. It will take the time it takes. I will be afraid. I will be scared. But I will keep going.
This is about taking things to the next level.
The Impact on My Business and Life
Making this shift has rippled all throughout my life, because how you do something is how you do everything.
I’ve started looking at my online business as a real business instead of just trying to make a few dollars.
By taking things to the next level, I’m enjoying my life more. I can do more. I can spend more time with my kids. I can grow more.
Here are three ways this has impacted the rest of my life:
- Cartooning. I’m learning to draw. When I was about 7 years old, I remember trying to draw. I got so frustrated I threw the paper and my pens on the floor. I didn’t think I was good enough. But drawing is just another skill, and I’m learning it. It’s not easy, but I’m getting better each day, because I’m putting in the work.
- Health. I’ve focused eating more whole plant-based foods, which give me more energy, joy, and other goodies.
- Income. My income has grown in many different ways. I keep following my heart, and it leads me into interesting places that make my heart sing, while bringing in money. I’m writing books, creating courses, and running a friendly membership.
With all that said, how does this impact you?
Why Should You Care?
You should care because deep down you know you want to do something greater.
You feel called to do something with your life. To share your gifts.
But you’re not sure where to even start.
You’re afraid that you’ll fail. You’re afraid of the same things that I was (and still am), because we’re all human beings.
So here’s one question I’d like you to consider:
How Can You Think Bigger?
Grab a pen + paper and write down your biggest goal when it comes to building your business and/or creating the lifestyle you want.
Then brainstorm what your next smallest steps would be to make it happen. Taking action toward this goal should feel uncomfortable.
It should feel scary.
But breaking it down into tiny steps should make it bearable and actionable.
And remember, you only have to start with what you have, where you are.
All the best,
Ready to Do What You Love?
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Neal Martin says
Great stuff Henri, really glad that things are working out so well for you. I’ve been pondering the idea of thinking bigger of late myself…maybe it’s time I stopped pondering and took some action! Thanks for the article, very enlightening.
Yes, indeed. Just start and see where it takes you 😉
Sergio Felix says
Hey Henri, seems like you can read my mind and see where am I currently at in my IM journey.
I’m at the intersection between the “past” and the “big lesson”.
Still struggling a little bit to make the shift but I’m pretty sure I’ll get there since I have been changing a lot of stuff, not only business wise but lifestyle wise including my mindset.
I can see where this is leading me and I am a little bit scared to be honest but also excited, I’m a bit tired too of being afraid so there’s only one way for me these days.
Thanks for the great write up, really enjoyed it and I just received my first e-mail lesson on the new training.
Looking forward to check the audio out tomorrow while jogging. 😉
Great to hear you making progress.
The being tired of being afraid is great. That’s usually what has to happen for change to occur.
Really interesting. Love the line “I was afraid of failure. And I was afraid of success.” Telling.
I also like the idea of moving beyond just selling a book to developing a lifestyle, which naturally flows into a business.
Yes, exactly. It’s important to think about it as a business. However, when starting out, it all starts with just one ebook, or one product.
Thanks for dropping by, Sarah 🙂
Slavko Desik says
Hi Henry, great article!
People are actually afraid of success. It sounds so great that we are in fact inherently scared of diving into it. And truth be told I’m as guilty as the next guy.
Thinking big, I get easily scared from all the ideas rushing through, from the picture painting itself in my head which pertains success more than anything else. And the realization that we can do big things is scary altogether. We are afraid of how much potential we actually have but never decide to use it. And just as you said, and I totally agree, this fear will go away and beautiful things will start to happen as soon as we start pursuing the picture of success that is in our mind. As soon as we are not afraid to contribute to the world, to offer value of any kind, to start seizing the opportunity.
I started my site http://www.lifestyleupdated.com/ and was literary scared to invest myself fully. I had, and still have, ideas of making it a brand consisting of the blog, a book, an online magazine and a mobile application, but the picture of that much success has actually made me quite afraid. The key is, like you suggest, to start one step at a time. Otherwise it may seem overwhelming. And doing it like this, I’m glad to say that the picture is painting at a very faster rate.
I’ve read couple of your articles on other sites, and this is actually my first time coming here. You have another reader now.
Once again, a great article!
Thanks Slavko. Great points.
I agree, start small. You can’t really know where you will end up. I’ve had plenty of very big ideas in the past, but most of them haven’t panned out. I’ve since come to realize that all I can do is take one step at a time and see where things take me.
I still plan, have a strategy and all that, but I’m not as rigid about it. And it’s much more fun that way 😉