7 reasons why you aren’t making progress on your passion biz

7 reasons why you aren't making progress on your dreams

Feeling a little unmotivated to work on your passion biz?

Fear not, my badass friend. It happens to all of us. This creative block doesn't have to be permanent. I want to see your passions become realities, so I've got 7 reasons why you aren't making the progress you want to make. And yes, it'll also help you simplify your life. Because that's how I roll. Life gets overwhelming — that's just life. How you react to it, and even how you act before stress happens, will decide how well you perform in your daily life

Are you ready? Read on for 7 reasons why you aren't making the progress you want to make on your dreams + how you can get back to being the creative badass you are.

What's keeping you from making progress on your passion biz?

Sometimes, our creativity just tanks. Like, to the bottom of the ocean tanks. One day, we're floating along, making great things happen, and the next day we can't even manage to get out of our pajamas.

I feel you, friend. I do love a good pajama day.

Life doesn't just stop because we can't put on adult clothes. And you never feel better after wasting a day on Netflix versus making loads of great progress towards your Passion Biz, so I want you to make that progress.

Be motivated to get motivated. Here are 7 ways to get you back on track to creating your legacy:

01. You don't eat the frog (I know, it sounds super gross)

Mark Twain was a witticism genius, but he probably wasn't the one who actually said, "If the first thing you do each morning is to eat a live frog, you can go through the day with the satisfaction of knowing that that is probably the worst thing that is going to happen to you all day long." That credit goes to the witty Nicolas Chamfort, a Revolution-era writer, who said it thus:

We should swallow a toad every morning, in order to fortify ourselves against the disgust of the rest of the day, when we have to spend it in society.
— Nicolas Chamfort (1741-1794)

Your frog is the worst or the hardest thing you have to do.

In our personal lives, when we're trying to create our Passion Biz, it's often the thing we most want to do. And yet because it's so difficult, time-consuming, or requires more brain power than we'd like to give, it gets pushed back and pushed back until we've let an entire year go by.

My frog is usually my novel, which is just a month of hard work away from being completely edited and ready for querying. That doesn't sound too bad, does it? But it takes a lot of brainpower. It takes a lot of concentrated brain power. And when I only have an hour here, a Saturday there, to work on it, I tell myself that I should wait to start until I can devote the right amount of time to it.

Guess what? That time will never come. Don't do this! (And I'll try not to do it, too.)

So eat the damned frog. Acknowledge that it's not going to be easy (or maybe even fun), but you need to do it. Get it out of the way and not only will you have it done, but you'll be more motivated to knock out your next frog. And that puts you one step closer to that small business you've always wanted to own, that book you've always wanted to write, or that song you've always wanted to compose.

02. You won't let go of the dreams you won't ever truly chase

If you're anything like me, you're a bit of a dreamer. This isn't a bad thing, but it can lead to some... questionable behaviors. For example, taking on fourteen new tasks and only half finishing each of them. Fourteen half-reached dreams are still 0 reached dreams.

Being a dreamer is fantastic. But so is being realistic. It's okay to let your head stay in the clouds 75% of the time, letting your creativity flow into you, but for the other 25%, you need to float back on down to earth and make yourself accountable to your dreams.

We all have those things we'd like to do but never actually get around to doing for one reason or another. That's good. You can't be a creative badass at anything if you're dabbling in everything.

So pick your passions. Even if it's just your right-now passion, and let the others go. It's okay. Just breathe. You don't have to do everything. Just do you... the simplified version.

03. You don't say NO to evil Energy Drains

You know those Pinterest pins that have captions like "Pin now, use later"? I see them all the time in home hack pins, DIY pins, and so on. You pin them to your boards and then you never think about them again, much less use them. The same thing happens with bookmarks and emails.

Have you got any? I bet you do, too. I did, too, until I cleaned out my Energy Drains. They build up in our boards and inboxes and bookmarks and we never think about them again. Or at least, I don't. Here's what my Pinterest pattern looked like until I took control back:

  1. Pinterest.com
  2. Scroll through feed and/or search for something specific
  3. Re-pin things that I want to try or are pretty
  4. Forget about them
  5. Repeat each time

Sound familiar? The problem here is that you're saving all these pins, and for most of us, we'll never even actually visit the webpage behind them. They just accumulate in our boards, withering away.

That shit clutters the mind. Say NO to these Energy Drains. Pin only what you'll actually use. Heart the others, if you must.

Sometimes, the best way to start fresh is to do a thorough spring cleaning of your Mind Sinks — Pinterest pins, emails, Facebook saved articles, email subscriptions, and whatever other crap is cluttering up your online life. If you go Minimalist anywhere, go Minimalist in your mind. Clean out the shit that keeps you from being your most creative badass self, and don't let it in again.

But be careful not to let the task of cleaning become a Mind Sink in itself!

04. You don't use tools to teach you how to keep on task

For no fathomable reason, I've recently begun not only the 30 Day Squat Challenge, but also the 30 Day Plank Challenge, and apparently because I harbor internal loathing, I've also made up a 30 Day Wall-sit Challenge. Are wall-sits not the product of the devil or what? They're hateful. And yet I'm doing them. How'd I convince myself to keep up with such an abhorrent task?

I give all the credit to a beautiful little app called Way of Life.

It is absolutely my favorite habit tracker app and it's what keeps me motivated when even the thought of a wall-sit nauseates me. There are plenty more great productivity apps around, and if you don't use at least one, you're missing out. Using an app is a fantastic way to make sure you work a little bit on your Magnum Opus every day. Set a daily goal, maybe something like "Make 2 new business connections every day," and keep yourself accountable to following through by logging it in your app.

Some other popular apps for tasks and productivity are Evernote, Letterspace, Dragon Dictation, 30/30, and EasilyDo.

05. The end goal isn't really important to you

Be honest with yourself: What do you live for?

Are you living to work or working to live? Are you letting obligations prevent you from working on your own masterpiece? You can't dump all your obligations (we gotta eat!), but you can be honest with how you are ranking your life priorities. What are you working towards right now? Is that what you want to be remembered for? If it isn't, then you're going to find it hard to keep motivated.

Take a look at your life. Make a list of all your hopes and dreams and your obligations. How can you reorganize these things to make sure you accomplish what you need and want to accomplish?

06. You don't find joy in the sucky stuff

As George Michael Bluth once said, sometimes you have to keep your head down and power through.

There are good things in life... and then there are shitty things. Wall-sits, for example.

You can't always avoid the wall-sits, and in fact, you shouldn't, but convincing your head this is true isn't easy. You have to find joy in things that suck. I like the way it feels like I'm actually accomplishing something when I do my 30 Days challenges. Even though it empties my checking account before I get to spend a single dollar, I also really like the satisfaction of paying a huge chunk of money towards my student loans. It sucks, but oh, that light a the end of the tunnel is sweet.

I can picture my post-squat bottom and that $0 balance on my student loans as clearly and vividly as I can my favorite cat's face.

Find some piece of joy, even if it's small, in the things you don't want to do but still need to do. It brings peace to your mind and satisfaction to your to-do list.

07. You haven't made a Mission Statement for your life (yes, the whole thing)

When Nathan and I started dating, we wrote out mission statements for one another, listing out what we wanted to accomplish with our relationship. It gave us a strong foundation and forced us to be very present in a relationship that was marked by 9 months of long distance. In our case, they were both statements of purpose and promises.

We set out to have a strong, adult, communicative relationship, and instead of hitting those early roadblocks like we both did in past relationships, we sailed right through the growing pains time and into something easy, fun, vibrant, and cozy. I attribute 40% of this to our mission statements and 60% to us just being awesome. I kid, I kid. Although Nate is great to have in the kitchen.

These Mission Statements sounds easy, and they are. But there's a catch: the power of a Mission Statement comes not in having one, but in writing one.

The act of thinking something all the way through, forming vague thoughts into real words, and putting those words to paper, is what will fuel your success.

If you don't have a mission statement for your Passion Biz (and life!) yet, then this should be your very first step. 

What will you do to make progress on your dreams?

I know you've probably not been feeling as pumped as you should be with your creativity, and that's okay. The 7 tips I listed above are great for getting you back on the right track. Don't overwhelm yourself even more by trying to do all of them at once. Starting with one is awesome! When you're comfortable with that one, add in another.

Feel ready to tackle more than one? FAB. Do it!

I'd love to hear which one you're starting with or how making tiny changes in your habits has improved your creative focus. Let's chat in comments!