I read a thought-provoking blog post not so long ago, and it reminded me of something. Something really important.
Nobody gets to be successful by looking at what successful people do.
Nor even by copying what they’re doing now.
You have to spend time laying the groundwork. Doing what successful people have done to become successful.
I live the lifestyle I want now. I work hard, to be sure – but I work hard when I want to. And I do all the other things I want to do when I’m not working.
But you know what? When I first started my business, I worked hard all the time. Twelve-hour days were the norm for me. Sometimes I’d have Saturday or Sunday afternoons off. I was driven, and often very tired.
It wasn’t just busywork either – or at least it wasn’t after I really knuckled down and put proper plans in place. This was all the groundwork that allowed me to build my business and work when I choose.
It’s the same with my circus skills. I’m an aerialist in my spare time – pole, trapeze and ropes – and my performances are polished, graceful (usually) and toe-perfect. But I didn’t just wake up one day able to do this stuff. I’ve spent more than 10 years practising several times a week to do this.
This kinda hench doesn’t just happen overnight. In circus skills or in business.
It might look effortless, but believe me, it’s not. It’s easier now, to be sure, because the groundwork is there – but it’s still hard work. And the hard work is making it look effortless.
Think about an aeroplane: once it’s up in the sky, it glides. But it’s the stuff that happened on the ground before take-off that put it up there.
Now, I’m in the happy position where I can choose my clients – I can say “no” to the ones that give off a bad vibe, or who aren’t willing to pay. And believe me, the first time you feel you can turn down work is an amazing feeling.
That’s when you’ll start to feel that your business is running itself. And that’s when you’ll start enjoying the fruits of your bloody hard work.
Then people will start saying things like: “Ooh, you’re going on holiday to [insert exotic place here]? You lucky thing.” Or: “You just bought that car you always wanted! You’re so lucky!”
At which point you can say: “You know, it’s a funny thing. The harder I work, the luckier I get!”
So, I said at the start of this email that you can’t just copy what successful people are doing and expect to become successful. You have to do what they’ve done.
But how do you know what they’ve done?
That’s the tricky part, isn’t it? But that’s where my book, Business For Superheroes comes in.
You’ll see not just what I’ve done to grow my business, but what countless others have done. I didn’t make most of this stuff up from scratch – I learned from others and adapted what they’ve done.
Come and get a copy here. You’ve got absolutely nothing to lose, have you?
Vicky Fraser is a copywriter, author, and entrepreneur. She really did run away with the circus… but when she’s not swinging from a trapeze, she’s showing other copywriters and small business owners how to work with better clients, make more money, and stop missing bathtimes, first words, and dinners with angry partners. In fact, she wrote the book on it. Get your copy here.
PS Wanna see some of the groundwork? Click here and you’ll see a slightly blurry pic of me trying a new move on the rope.
Then click here and get yourself a copy of my book. I probably can’t make you a circus star, but I can help you make a bloody successful business for yourself.