This article originally appeared on Changemakers Unite as Double the Pleasure, Double the Fun: My Steps to Happier Entrepreneurship.
Crisp suits. Stilettos. A killer handshake and a gaze that could bore holes in someone’s forehead.
This is what we think of when we hear the words “entrepreneur,” “CEO,” and “business owner.”
They’re scary, intimidating people that never, ever have fun. They’re all about business and driving the hard line.
Psh! Puh-lease! After working with entrepreneurs and business owners for more than 20 years, I’ve seen firsthand that you can be a serious business owner and be silly and fun.
The problem lies in the image we all have of the ideal entrepreneur. While I can totally understand the “fake it ‘til you make it” mentality, you don’t have to suppress your personality, needs and sense of humor.
Au contraire. Running a business should give you an avenue to express yourself. And yes, that means having actual fun running your business.
“Jeanna, what in the world are you talking about? Running a biz is work, and it’s not meant to be fun,” you might think.
Sure, I agree doing taxes and paying bills isn’t glamorous. But I do think the majority of your work should bring you joy, happiness and fun.
The key to running a successful business that’s both fun and profitable is controlling your mindset. If you want to have fun running your biz (and who the heck doesn’t?), you need to manage your mentality.
It’s about more than fun for fun’s sake
First of all, I believe our purpose on this planet is to build joy and have fun. If you aren’t having fun, what are you doing?
I’m not saying that just because fun is important for fun’s sake. There are far-reaching implications for the success of your business. And, y’know, having a job that doesn’t make you want to scream into a pillow every day.
Fun is the key to making your business goals a reality — the manifestation of grit, purpose and passion. While you can be super dedicated to your business, fun is what makes you get up every morning and press on.
Fun isn’t a buzzword or a nice-to-have. It helps you grow your business in real, measurable ways.
Fun frees up your energy so you can be more creative and excited by your projects. It truly paves the way to freedom and abundance.
Fancy-free fun for entrepreneurs
“Uhm, okay, Jeanna. How the heck can I make my business more fun?”
Great question! You can easily double (or maybe even triple) the fun you have while running your business. Follow this process to adjust your mindset.
1. Know your outcome
Visualize your desired outcome first. I know “fun” seems more synonymous with a day at the beach rather than quiet contemplation and visualization. But visualization is a critical first step to providing structure for fun.
When designing your outcome, saying, “Okay, I want to make a ton of money with my business” isn’t quite enough. That’s a nice outcome, although I’d wager too vague.
Drill down into the heart of what you truly want. Set a SMART goal for your outcome.
If you want to make more money, your outcome might be, “I want my business to earn $5,000 next month.”
Achieving this goal is much easier, because there’s a number to aim for. You’ll even have a hard stop date to look back and see if you achieved what you set out to.
You need to know your outcome to have more fun running your biz. Why? Because you’ll have a better direction and sense of purpose. By setting your goals, you know what you need to do.
There’s no mindless lollygagging when you want to have fun in business. Increase the power of attraction by knowing your desired outcome.
This goal will be your north star and your fuel to succeed while enjoying the journey.
2. Make a plan for your outcome
I love big, wishful thinking, but now let’s turn those wishes into reality. Whatever your desired outcome, put pen to paper and make a plan to get there.
If you want to earn $5,000 next month, start with a list of what you need to do to get there. That might include asking for referrals, writing some awesome blogs or joining a networking group.
The next step is the sticky bit. You have to actually do your plan. Big steps, small steps. How you move forward doesn’t matter. Both are going in the right direction.
I know making a plan doesn’t sound like much fun. Planning and strategizing may even sound like the opposite of fun.
But it is fun! A plan gives you the structure and freedom to have fun while achieving your goals.
A plan is the difference between meaningful fun that furthers your goals and distracting fun that hinders you. So yes, if you want to have fun with your biz in a constructive way, create a plan.
3. Set empowering rules
At this point, you may be thinking, “Gee, Jeanna, this is sounding not-so-fun.”
Goals, plans and rules sound like a strict schoolmarm’s guide to fun. I get it.
But I’ve come to realize that rules are empowering. They give you the structure, focus and accountability to let your hair down without the worry.
Don’t fret. These rules are designed to be fun! Set fun rules like visualizing your goals every day, logging your progress or brainstorming with a buddy.
The best part about empowering rules? There are NO rules about making them.
You do you. Just remember: these rules should make you feel excited and eager to work.
4. Let your weird out
Everyone has quirks. The great thing is that quirkiness makes running your business so much more enjoyable.
If you love having tattoos or purple hair or want to jam out to country music, you can. Heck, get crazy!
Your quirks help you attract clients while having fun.
Clients love working with someone who’s genuine and enjoys their business. All the while, you get to have more fun, because you’re being yourself. What’s not to love?
Of course, there’s still a limit on how weird you can be. You don’t want to scare clients away with your toenail collection. Keep your quirks professional without going overboard.
The bottom line
Who says you have to give up your Converse and rainbow hair when you start a business?
I say let your uniqueness shine through. When you are your genuine self, you attract 5-Star Clients.
These people don’t want a fake persona; they want the real you, fun and quirks included.
Use these strategies to build fun and personality into your biz. You’ll be happier and a little richer for it.
The views and opinions expressed are those of the guest author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of MindShift.money.
image credit: Bigstock/Wayhome Studio
Jeanna is a Master Business Coach and Chief Rabble Rouser of MasterPeace Coaching. After 20+ years of liberating business owners from the curse of “not enough” and the myth of “hard work pays off,” she knows without question you can make massive amounts of money and impact millions even if you’ve been struggling for years.