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Feel Like “Burning Down” Your Business? Read This. (Part 1)

Feel Like “Burning Down” Your Business? Read This. (Part 1)

Recently, a famous entrepreneur in the transformation industry apparently advised a room full of beginning and “wanna-be” entrepreneurs that one of the secrets to business success is to “burn it all down.”

I wasn’t personally in the room, but even if it didn’t happen precisely the way it was described to me, there are a few good teaching points I think are worth talking about.

1. There is a time and place to share your most vulnerable story—and that time is NOT when the walls are crashing down on you.

Look, being an entrepreneur is really, really tough. It’s going to trigger you. It’s going to push your buttons. You’re going to fail. You’re going to fall down.

Some of those falls are going to be harder and more painful than others.

And, sometimes, the pit you find yourself in is so deep and so dark, the only possible way out you can see is to burn everything down.

I get it. Every single successful entrepreneur I know has contemplated burning it all down at some point, and a good many of them actually have (or did a pretty significant pivot).

As you can imagine, being in this place can wreak havoc on your emotions, which is why if you talk about it when you’re in the middle of it, you run the risk of sounding massively-entitled, ego-driven, and self-serving.

(And, let’s be honest—you likely sound massively-entitled, ego-driven, and self-serving because in that moment, you ARE. And it’s okay. It’s normal. You’re in a tremendously difficult time. Be gentle with yourself.)

The time to share is AFTER. After you’ve done the work, felt the feelings, and actually have some sort of positive resolution to share.

If you don’t have a positive resolution yet, that likely means it’s not time to share.

2. There’s more than one way to “burn it down.”

Some entrepreneurs are able to use their current business as fuel for a new one. Some simply burn it down and walk away. Some even take others down with them.

In the heat of the moment, you may decide you don’t care what happens to anyone else–you just want out. I get it. But, again, before you destroy what you worked so hard to build, I’d encourage you to take a moment and consider how it will affect others, such as:

• Your team. They’re depending on you financially. Are you still paying them like you promised? Are you able to bring them with you, if you begin traveling a new path? And, if not, are you giving them enough of a heads up, so they can find other arrangements?

• Your clients. They’re depending on you, too. Are you leaving them in a lurch, or are you honoring your commitment to them?

• Your past clients, customers, and buyers (and really anyone who believed in your message, teaching, and training). Are you now telling them everything you taught was a sham? Or are you still standing behind the essence of your message (as it may just be changing form)?

• Your commitments. Are you honoring your commitments and doing what you can to gracefully transition, or are you simply walking away, promises be damned? (Note—this includes promises you’ve made to yourself, as well as to others.)

It may be you’re at a point where you simply don’t care anymore. But if you do, I highly encourage you to take a moment to pause and breathe and think about what you’re doing.

Like I said earlier, there are lots of ways to burn down your business, and how you do it says a lot about your character.

3. If you find yourself trapped in a pit, there is likely a deeper reason.

You typically don’t get stuck in pits unless something else is going on.

For instance, you may have heard the saying “breakdown to breakthrough”—in many cases, the deeper and darker the pit, the bigger the breakthrough. Or maybe the pit is supposed to be showing you something else … something that’s not even related to your business.

In fact, a lot of times, even if you feel like burning down your business, that actually isn’t the right solution.

In Part 2, I’m going to dig into some other deeper issues that may be lurking underneath your desire to burn it all down.

And, if you’d like to dig into more mindset issues that may be holding you back from the business success you’re dreaming about, check out my “Love-Based Money and Mindset” book. You can grab your copy here.

[Checklist] How to Grow Your Online Social Influence

[Checklist] How to Grow Your Online Social Influence

One of the best ways to supercharge your business growth and your income (while getting your message out there in a bigger way) is to grow you online social influence.

After all, when you have a strong online social influence, you’ve built credibility and visibility around your expertise, which means your ideal clients are likely seeking you out, excited to work with you. You probably also enjoy the results you get from the power of word of mouth marketing to sell your products, services, book, programs and more.

But be warned—building your online influence isn’t easy (and there are some hard truths you should know about it before you even get started, which I share here). The good news is there IS a path you can follow if you’re ready to step up and start growing your social influence.

That’s why I’ve created this checklist—to show you that path, and to provide you with links to additional articles and resources, so you can begin developing your social influence.

The Checklist:

_____ Are you clear—crystal clear—on your business?

It is crucial to be clear on:

* Your message, and

* Who you serve.

If you don’t have absolute clarity on both your message and your ideal client, it’s going to be very difficult, if not impossible, to actually grow your social influence.

(Note—in my “How to Start a Business You Love AND That Loves You Back” book, you’ll find a whole host of questions to help you get clear on the precise business you want to build. You can grab your copy for free here.)

_____ Have you developed your own unique voice?

People will resonate with you (and want to follow you) when:

* They fall in love with your message, and

* How you communicate your message.

The way you communicate your message is just as important as your message itself.

For example—many self-help experts have a message around love being the most powerful force in the world. But, the ones who rise to the top have a distinct way of communicating that message so it rises to the top.

Most health experts have a similar message around healthy habits. So how do they differentiate themselves from their competition? By communicating that message in their own unique voice.

So, how do you develop your unique voice?

Two quick tips are to read more and write more. (The more you read and the more you write, the more you’ll start to develop your unique voice.) But most importantly, don’t be afraid to share your personality. Let people see the real you—your quirks, your loves, your rants, your vulnerabilities. That’s what people want to see—the real you.

_____ Are you in integrity with your message?

There’s nothing less persuasive or compelling than being a hypocrite.

Really, who wants to follow a hypocrite? (Think of Dante’s Inferno—he devoted a whole circle of hell just to hypocrites.)

So, whatever your message is, it’s critical to make sure both you and your business are aligned with that message.

Now that doesn’t necessarily mean you need to be aligned 100% of the time. For instance, if you’re a health coach, you can occasionally pig out on chocolate cake. But, then be honest about it. Let people know you’re human, and you occasionally cheat and it’s okay if they occasionally cheat. (In fact, sharing your flaws and being honest about them will likely make you even more relatable to prospects.)

But, if you’re a health coach and you have some nasty health habits you’re not owning up to, people are going to sense that you’re out of integrity. They might not know why, exactly, but they’ll feel something is off. And they won’t be all that interested in following you.

_____ Are you making a difference in people’s lives?

Most people want to follow someone they can look up to, right?

One great way to be that type of person is to make a difference in people’s lives.

A lot of people have a dream or a goal to leave the world a better place than they found it, and if you’re working toward that vision, people will be naturally attracted to you, so they can learn from you.

In addition, if you help people, those people are going to be more inclined to follow you.

I also don’t think it’s a coincidence that a key trait for most successful people is their generosity and commitment to being of service to others. So, if you want to be successful and grow your social influence, upping your generosity may be exactly what you need to do.

_____ Are you putting your best work out there?

For years, the prevailing wisdom we heard as entrepreneurs was to focus on your marketing, rather than the quality of your work, because “he who has the best marketing wins.”

That actually hasn’t proven to be completely true. Yes, there’s no question you still need marketing, and having a solid marketing plan you consistently follow will go a long way to help you attract a steady stream of clients, customers, and buyers.

But, marketing on its own isn’t going to cut it. You also need to make sure you’re putting your best work out there.
Marketing can help you get a first-time buyer, yes. But, if that buyer has a bad experience, almost no amount of marketing will convince him or her to come back a second time.

In addition, if everyone has good marketing, then the only thing that separates one business from another is the quality of what they’re offering.

_____Have you chosen the right communication vehicle for you?

Having a large social influence typically means having a lot of followers.

So, if you want to have a lot of followers, you need something for them to follow. (Makes sense, right?)

Whether it’s a blog or a podcast or a youtube channel or a Facebook group or something else (or even a combination of vehicles) you’re likely going to have to build something for people to be a part of.

If you’re not sure which is the best communication vehicle for you, you may want to take my “Love Your Marketing Assessment” in my “Love-Based Online Marketing” book, to help you figure that out.

_____Have you worked through your mindset and/or subconscious blocks?

When you decide to step up and become more visible so you can start making a bigger difference, you may discover you have some mindset or subconscious blocks that are keeping you from making the progress you want to.

First off, this is completely normal. Chances are you already WOULD have a big social influence if you didn’t have any blocks getting in your way.

My book “Love-Based Money and Mindset” is all about working through your mindset blocks so you can grow your business, but this article will help you get started.

Lastly, you may want to dig into one or several of these topics in more detail. My Love-Based Business series is a great place to get started. Check out all the books here.

3 Keys to Harnessing the Power of Word of Mouth Advertising (And 1 Bonus Tip to Help Skyrocket Your Results!)

3 Keys to Harnessing the Power of Word of Mouth Advertising (And 1 Bonus Tip to Help Skyrocket Your Results!)

Raise your hand if you think word of mouth advertising (aka word of mouth marketing) is what you should be striving for as an entrepreneur/business owner.

It certainly feels like the most perfect form of marketing, doesn’t it? Your ideal clients, customers, and buyers just flow to you, without your having to make any effort at all, because your current happy clients are busy sending you referrals.

Alas, it’s not as simple as all of that (check out my 3 Myths about Word of Mouth Marketing That May Be Hurting Your Biz). BUT, it IS more under your control than you might imagine.

Below are three keys to harnessing the power of word of mouth advertising (and a bonus tip!)

1. Get crystal clear on your ideal client. Okay, so this one doesn’t seem terribly helpful at first glance. How is getting clear on your ideal client going to help other ideal clients start flocking to you?

Well, here’s a little secret about ideal clients—these are the clients who LOVE you and LOVE working with you (just like you LOVE working with them). Because they love you so much, they’re happy to sing your praises to the world. These are the clients who will happily share you with all their friends and associates.

These ideal, perfect clients are at the heart of your word of mouth advertising plan.

Now, contrast that with clients who aren’t ideal. These are the clients you struggle to work with, who you dread getting on the phone with. They also typically take 80% of your time (versus the ideal clients who take 20%).

Trust me when I say the feeling is mutual. They know you’re not ideal for them, either. They’re not feeling the love.

So, they are most definitely not going to tell the world about you. (And, if they did tell someone, it likely would not be a glowing review, but something far more tepid.)

(If you want to learn more about finding/getting super clear on your ideal client, here’s a post you can check out. You can also grab a copy of my Love-Based Copywriting Method book for even more on ideal clients.)

Bonus Tip: If you REALLY want to supercharge your word of mouth advertising plan, look for ideal clients who are also influencers.

Influencers are folks who already have a big following, and who will be happy to tell that following all about you. If that happens, you can get a big business boost that may last months or even years.

2. Become a master at your expertise. Again, this may sound like less-than-helpful advice, but think about it.

For people to rave about their experience with you, they need to actually have an experience worth raving about. Right?

So, the more you’ve mastered your expertise, the more likely it is you’ll be able to provide that amazing experience.

Your reputation matters. Nurture it. Focus on it. If people hear good things about you, they’ll be far more likely to invest in you.

3. Ask for referrals. Despite what you might believe, word of mouth advertising is not passive. It’s very much something you can control.

Actively pursue it. The best way to do that? You create a plan-of-action around asking for referrals.

Maybe you have a policy in place where you immediately reply back to a glowing client email, thanking him or her and asking his permission to use the email as a testimonial. This is a great time to also ask for referrals. Maybe you send an email to your client list asking if they know anyone who would be a good fit for your services, and if so, to please provide those people with your contact info. Or maybe you take it one step further and create a contest around it—give a prize, like an Amazon gift card or free coaching, to whoever sends you the most referrals.

It’s also a great idea to reward all referrals. Give a gift card, or a referral check. And let people know you value and appreciate them for helping you reach more people.

Lastly, keep in mind that as powerful as word of mouth advertising is, it’s just one piece of an overall marketing plan. If  you’d like help putting together a specific online marketing plan that’s unique to you and your business, you may want to check out my “Love-Based Online Marketing” book.

[Video] Flip It! How Do I Find a Mentor?

[Video] Flip It! How Do I Find a Mentor?

First off, I’m a big believer in having a mentor.

No matter what you’re trying to do — start a business, grow a business, lose weight, write a book, start a new career — having a mentor who can answer questions and help guide you through can be hugely helpful.

The challenge is, how do you make sure you’re finding the right mentor for you?

Well, there are a few things to consider when choosing a mentor:

1. Get clear on precisely what type of mentor you’re looking for. Are you looking for someone who is more of a coach? Or someone who is more of a consultant?

Coaches by definition will ask you a lot of questions and help you sort out what’s right for you. When someone is coaching you, they’re not giving you answers — they’re asking YOU questions so you determine the answer for yourself.

Consultants are the folks who will tell you what to do. They’re the ones who will recommend strategies and ideas.

Most people, even people who call themselves coaches, are some sort of a mix between a coach and a consultant. If someone is telling you what to do and telling you to follow a system, that isn’t coaching. It’s consulting.

So, the question is — what are you looking for? Do you want someone to give you advice and a system and a structure to follow? Or do you want someone who can help you get clear on what you want to create?

Or are you looking for a little of both? Someone who can help coach through you your mindset blocks while providing you with a system and a strategy.

It doesn’t really matter who you’re looking for — what’s important is to get clear on who you are looking for so you can make sure you’re hiring the right person.

2. Make sure you’re actually hiring the type of person you want to work with. Ask them questions. Read their testimonials. Listen to your gut. This is an important decision and you want to make sure you’re hiring the right person.

But, making sure you’re a good match with your mentor is just the tip of the iceberg. You also need to make sure you’re a match with my next step.

3. If you’re looking for a system or a strategy to follow, make sure this is a system or strategy that you actually want.

One thing that I’ve seen over and over is entrepreneurs hiring a mentor to help them build a business. The mentor helps them build the same business the mentor has. Which is all well and good if that’s the business you want.

But, what if it isn’t?

That’s where the problem comes in — you’ve built this business, and maybe it’s even pretty successful and profitable, but you hate it.

Now what?

(Note — my Love-Based Money podcast is full of interviews with entrepreneurs who, much to their chagrin, realized they had built the wrong business.)

The answer to that is another Flip It!, but for now, I would suggest doing some research and really feeling into what sort of business you want and then making sure the mentor you’re hiring actually has that business.

If you’re unclear about what sort of business you desire or what your best suited for, it may be smarter to hire a coach to help you get clear on that first before you figure out what system you want to use.

Watch below for a few more tips on how to find a mentor:

(And if you’re wondering exactly how you can get everything you want simply by flipping your perspective? Check out the first episode here.)

If you liked this episode, you may also like my free book “How to Start a Business You Love AND that Loves You Back” — you can check it out here.

[Video] Flip It! If You Do What You Love, Will the Money Follow?

[Video] Flip It! If You Do What You Love, Will the Money Follow?

You’ve likely heard the statement — do what you love and the money will follow.

But is it true?

Well, yes and no.

On one hand, when you do what you love, you’re likely passionate about it as well. Which usually means, you’re also spending a lot of time working on it.

And typically the more time you’re spending at something, the more likely you’ll be successful at it.

In addition, if you look at this from a law of attraction or energetic perspective, love is one of the highest vibrations. So, if you do what you love and love what you do, you’ll be operating at a very high vibration. That means you’ll be attracting money and abundance and opportunities and success.

But — there’s always a but — it’s not that simple.

First off, there seems to me a lot of confusion around doing what you love. Some folks feel like if you’re doing what you love, that means you’re loving what you do.

All. The. Time.

And that just isn’t true.

There are going to be times you’re in the flow and really passionate and loving what you do. And, there are going to be times where it’s a struggle. Or a drain.

Just because you love what you do, doesn’t mean you’ll never feel overwhelmed. Or stressed. Or like you need a vacation.

Plus, you may not love every single part of it. For instance, if you’re a book author, maybe you love writing the first draft but you don’t especially love the editing process. Or maybe you love the writing part but you hate the marketing part.

Or maybe there are just days where you don’t feel like writing. (Spoiler alert: successful authors are the ones who write every day whether they feel like it or not — they aren’t waiting around for “inspiration” or to only do it when they feel like it.)

But, it’s not just about writing. It’s anything you want to succeed at. For instance, if you want to build a successful business around what you love — I can pretty much guarantee you ARE going to have to do things you don’t like.

That in and of itself, isn’t the problem — the problem comes in when you allow the times you aren’t loving what you do to derail you. You don’t follow through on your marketing the way you should. You don’t show up to consistently work on your creative project.

And, consistency is what typically leads to success.

I share more ways you can tweak what you’re doing so you’re doing more of what you love in the video below. Watch now:

(And if you’re wondering exactly how you can get everything you want simply by flipping your perspective? Check out the first episode here.)

If you liked this episode, you may also like my “Love-Based Money and Mindset” book — you can check it out here.

[Video] Flip It! Why Haven’t I Gotten Better Results Yet?

[Video] Flip It! Why Haven’t I Gotten Better Results Yet?

If you’re trying to grow your business and you’re not feeling like you’re getting the results you want, I would say one of 3 things is going on:

  1. You’re taking a lot of action, but it’s not the RIGHT action, and that’s why you aren’t seeing results. Maybe the marketing strategy you’re following isn’t the right strategy for your specific situation, or maybe you need better copy for your emails.

This is probably the easiest one to fix — and it’s also the one everyone assumes is the problem. Hence all the marketing out there that is promising you that you really could be getting results, if you only knew this one tiny little-known secret.

And sometimes, this is precisely what’s going on. But, if you’ve tried tweaking your marketing strategy or putting up a new Facebook ad and it’s still not working, then let’s move to number 2.

  1. You’re taking a lot of action and it’s the right action, but it’s just going to take some time. The harsh truth is — success takes time. Dan Kennedy, who is a famous copywriter and business strategist, once said he’s met a lot of millionaires that their bank account just hasn’t caught up to them yet.

So, how do you know if it’s this one? If you’re seeing small, incremental signs of success. Typically if you’re on the right path.

Look, despite a lot of the sexy Facebook ads you’re seeing in your news feed, success doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time. And work. Consistent work. So, if you’re consistently showing up and seeing those tiny results, keep going.

But, there’s a third thing that might be going on.

  1. You’re actually not really taking all the consistent action you think you’re taking.

There’s a story about Tony Robbins where at one of his events, a man stood up and said “I’ve done everything possible to grow my business and nothing is working.” And Tony said “okay, tell me 10 things you did.” And the man pauses and says “I guess I only did 1 or 2 things” and sits back down.

The point is — what we think we’re doing and what we’re actually doing may not be the same thing.

One of the most difficult things is to get out of our own head and our story so we can clearly see our actions. It is really easy to get sucked into all the crap in our head and be able to judge what we are or aren’t doing.

How do you know if you’re here? Watch below and find out:

(And if you’re wondering exactly how you can get everything you want simply by flipping your perspective? Check out the first episode here.)

If you liked this episode, you may also like my “Love-Based Money and Mindset” book — you can check it out here.

[Video] Flip It! What Mistakes do Entrepreneurs Make When Starting a Business?

[Video] Flip It! What Mistakes do Entrepreneurs Make When Starting a Business?

Full disclosure — mistakes are VERY common, especially when you’re first starting a business. I personally have made more mistakes than I can even remember.

And, I’ve noticed a theme around the vast majority of mistakes. Most of them are made because the entrepreneur is focusing on the wrong things.

Let me give you an example.

When you’re first starting a business, chances are the first thing you focus on is creating a logo, a tagline, a website — things like that.

Now, there’s nothing wrong with any of those things. All of them most definitely can help you grow your business.

But, none of those — yes even the website — will actually put money into your pocket in the short term.

Now, this isn’t the say you don’t need a website — you absolutely do. BUT it’s completely possible to get some clients and money in the door without it.

And that, my friends, is what you should focusing on when you’re starting a business. Generating some income. Learning how to craft your offer so your ideal clients say yes to you.

Because if you don’t know how to craft an offer so your ideal prospects say yes to you, it’s going to be an uphill battle trying to generate an income.

Worse, what if you decide to spend all this time and money to  create a website, logo and tagline only to discover your message is all wrong? It actually DOESN’T actually attract, inspire and invite your ideal prospects to become your ideal clients.

So, what do you do?

Luckily there IS a better way, which I share in the video below. Check it out:

(Wondering exactly how you can get everything you want simply by flipping your perspective? Check out the first episode here.)

If you liked this episode, you may also like my Love-Based Copy books: Love-Based Copywriting Method and Love-Based Copywriting System, both available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iTunes and other online retailers.

 

[Video] Flip It! How Do You Know If You Should Quit?

[Video] Flip It! How Do You Know If You Should Quit?

“I quit.” Every entrepreneur I’ve ever known has fantasied at one time or another about quitting. (Yes, even the super successful ones.)

But, fantasy is one thing. What happens when you’re in the middle of the mess — working your fingers to the bone every day with no guarantee the work you’re slaving over will actually turn into the success you’re hoping and dreaming and sweating and bleeding for.

How do you know when you’re just wasting your time and you should quit — or you should keep going? (After all, how many of us have heard about those “overnight” success stories that took ten years?)

How do you do it? How do you keep working on your business, not knowing if the actions you’re taking today are going to be the ones to finally break through for you. Or if it’s going to take another six months or even a year before you start seeing momentum in your business.

Or do you?

I think part of the problem is how do you know if what you’re going through is simply part of the process or if you’re completely on the wrong path and really should quit?

And, the answer is — you don’t.

Not completely.

Most of the time you’re battling your self doubt and your demons alone, in the slog, day after day.

BUT, I do think there are a few signs you can look for:

• Do you see any glimpses of success? Scott Adams in his book “How to Fail At Almost Everything and Still Win Big” wrote you will see a few signs if you’re on the right path. They may be small, they may be spread apart, but they’ll be there.

• Is the Universe helping you course correct? Course corrections can appear in all sorts of ways. Maybe it’s a person who shows up with the perfect, offhand remark, or a blog post pops up with precisely the information you’ve been looking for. The point is to stay open to what’s being put in front of you.

• Or is the Universe trying to send you in a different direction? One of my entrepreneurial friends was laid off three times over a period of two years. As she drove home after the third time, her stuff in a box next to her, she finally realized the Universe had been trying to steer her away from a job and toward having her own business.

Basically, being open to the gentle suggestions, nudges or cheering-you-on signs is the best thing you can do for yourself during this time.

I’ve got more (a lot more) to say on this topic — watch below:

 

(And if you’re wondering exactly how you can get everything you want simply by flipping your perspective? Check out the first episode here.)

If you liked this episode, you may also like my “Love-Based Money and Mindset” book — you can check it out here.

[Video] Flip It! Should I Offer a Guarantee on My Products or Services?

[Video] Flip It! Should I Offer a Guarantee on My Products or Services?

I hear this question a lot, and what I’ve found most entrepreneurs are REALLY asking is: What if I offer a guarantee and people take advantage of me? They buy my product, go through it all, and then ask for their money back?

So, let me start by saying I get it. And, your fears aren’t necessarily unfounded. There ARE people out there who do take advantage of money-back guarantees.

However, I’ve been doing this a long time and I can confidently tell you that is a very, very small percentage of your potential buyers. The vast majority of your buyers are good, decent, honest people who have no desire to take advantage of you.

It also might help if you understand the purpose of a guarantee. Guarantees are actually designed to take the risk off of the buyer and put it back on the seller.

Put yourself in the shoes of the buyer. You’re searching online for a solution to your problem, and you come across a product that looks perfect. BUT, all you have to judge is what you see on a sales page. This isn’t Costco where you can pick the product up and look at it in the store. You’re purchasing something sight unseen.

Which means YOU are taking all the risk. Not the seller.

What happens if it’s not as promised? Or what if you get absolutely nothing?

Then what? Sure you can go through your credit card to try and get the charges reversed, but now you’re wasting your time to get your money back and there’s no guarantee that’s going to work either.

As the seller, if you offer a guarantee, you are assuming some of the risk. And, as you are going to financially profiting from the transaction, it makes sense that you do assume some of the risk.

Plus, studies have found if you actually sell more if you offer a guarantee. Watch and I explain why:

 

(And if you’re wondering exactly how you can get everything you want simply by flipping your perspective? Check out the first episode here.)

If you liked this episode, you may also like my “Love-Based Online Marketing” book — you can check it out here.

4 Reasons You Shouldn’t Check Email First Thing in the Morning (and 4 Things to Do, Instead)

4 Reasons You Shouldn’t Check Email First Thing in the Morning (and 4 Things to Do, Instead)

Raise your hand if the first thing you do in the morning is check email. (Oh, come now. We’re all friends here. It’s okay — you can raise your hand.)

That was me a few years ago. Before I barely dragged myself out of bed I would check email — never mind making coffee or even taking my dogs outside. (In fact, I sometimes hadn’t even gone to the bathroom myself before I was into my email.)

Yes, I admit it. I was addicted.

It took me awhile to break the “check email” habit, and part of the reason why it took me so long is because I didn’t completely believe that it was bad for you.

I can handle it.

Oh, I’m just taking a quick peek and then I’ll do my morning self-care routine.

It’s not a big deal to check email first thing in the morning.

Yeah, well … I learned the hard way that’s not true. And, for anyone else who is a “check email first thing in the morning” denier, I offer you these 4 reasons you should stop.

  1. You lose control over your energy.

As soon as you begin reading emails, you’re in other people’s energy. You’re reading about, thinking about, and handling other people’s needs—and you’re not doing the same for your own needs. That’s a slippery slope. Once you go into reactive mode, you often don’t end up reclaiming your time until the end of the day, when you’re usually too tired for self-care.

  1. You never know what you’re going to find.

I used to tell myself (and others) that I was checking my email first thing in the morning just in case one of those messages contained amazing news! But the truth is, I checked it first thing in the morning also because I was afraid it might contain bad news, and I wanted to know about any crises as quickly as possible so I could deal with them. If there is good news in your inbox, great! But what if there’s bad news? Then you’re starting your day off in a bad space (this does overlap a bit with the last reason I mentioned).

  1. You start your day off with anxiety.

If you’re in the habit of checking your email first thing in the morning, you won’t be able to relax until you’ve done it. You’ll be thinking about what’s in there—how many unopened emails, whether they’ll require responses or other action, or whether there will, in fact, be some sort of crisis.

And then …

  1. You get into your day without the right preparation.

Because you can’t relax until you check your email, you check it right away and before you know it, you’re officially in full swing. You’re responding to emails or checking on projects before you’ve even had your coffee.

Which leads me to the solution section of this post!

I’d love to share with you some ideas for how to start your day off right, so you can maintain your inner peace (also known as sanity) while dealing with anything your inbox—or your day—throws at you. These tips will help you be more productive, happier, and more successful, every day!

Step 1. Breathe into the feelings that are compelling you to check your email first thing in the morning. Breathe through those feelings until they subside. Meanwhile, don’t check that email! Keep your finger off that button. Make a conscious effort to stop the story you’re telling yourself—about whatever’s in that inbox, or what might happen if you don’t find out RIGHT NOW.

Step 2. Create a new, healthy morning routine that includes self-care. When you create a morning routine that allows you time for ritual, self-care and solid preparation, you begin your day grounded in positive energy, refreshed, and mentally prepared for whatever life throws at you!

My own morning routine includes getting up and letting the dogs out, before drinking some water. I meditate, for about 20 minutes, and then I connect with God (sometimes I pray, other times I write, and other times I simply listen). Then I move around in my body, which may mean I stretch, do yoga, or do some breathing.

The meditation, connecting with God, and movement are all self-care items that ground me in calm, positive energy, setting me up for a successful day.

Finally, I pour myself some coffee. Then, I get down to work.

Step 3. Create lasting success habits. There are several success habits I recommend when it comes to staying in control of your energy, your time, and your emotions:

  • Take the time to plan your day (and maybe your week) in advance. This takes about five minutes, and dramatically increases your productivity and sense of balance.
  • Check in with your business and personal goals regularly. I recommend doing this once a quarter or so, to make sure you’re connected to your vision and staying on track.
  • Make your health a priority. Eat well, get enough sleep, drink enough water, and get some exercise and fresh air. I’m not saying you have to go vegan and run marathons, but make choices that support your overall health!
  • Practice gratitude. Gratitude is the highest vibration you can be in! So when you’re practicing it, by taking notice of what you’re grateful for and why, you’re raising your own vibration to be in alignment with abundance.

At first, breaking the email habit may be difficult. You may find yourself going through withdrawals, and experiencing amplified versions of the emotions you associate with first-thing-in-the-morning email checking.

But with perseverance, you can develop new, healthy habits that set you up for daily and long-term success!

If this topic resonated with you, you may be interested in “Love-Based Money and Mindset: Make the Money You Desire Without Selling Your Soul.” It’s available at most online retailers. Learn more, here.