A Blueprint On Setting and Achieving Goals Long Before You Are Ready
Setting and achieving goals is not easy, it does not matter the goal, whether you want start a business, to start exercise, to start being gluten free, to start being sugar free or just to start meditating. Whatever your goal might be, you always hit a wall before starting to accomplish it. The wall represents our never ending thoughts, those negative voices in our head that tell us that we cannot do it, or who do we think we are to pull it off, or what is the point of doing it?
How I Started Estilo Tendances
When I launched Estilo Tendences (a website that helps women be more beautiful and stylish) about 5 years ago, I did not think of it as a business, but a hobby. That was the first time I realized, starting a new hobby is actually hard. For 4 years I was up and down with this “hobby”, I would be super engaged for a few months, then my focus would shift to studying or to who knows what else. I had no consistency and therefore I had to start over and over again. I had no bigger vision of what I would accomplish with it or what was the bigger purpose. Of course, I was not consistent since I had no goals.
In October 2014, I relaunched Estilo Tendances and this time it was serious. This time I had set some goals and I wanted to achieve them no matter what. I had the vision and made the decision that this will be my business and my future income and that there is no time for playing around.
Although I was determined and put a lot of effort into building it from scratch, I was pretty comfortable in my approach because I had my safety nets: my rent was paid for by my family and I had a monthly scholarship and no debt. Of course, I knew this was not going to last forever, I was about to graduate in 8 months when my scholarship would be gone and my parents not willing to support me financially – so I had to make it in these 8 months.
But, there was no real pain in the present moment, so maintaining the engagement and the dream alive, was very hard. Plus, I was still not making any money and had to invest monthly, the website’s usual fees which are quite high when you are starting out – $100-$200/month. On top of everything, we also bought our first blogging course – Bloggers MBA. Total game changer. We both (me and Mihai – CEO of Male Extravaganza and my boyfriend) knew that if we really wanted to make this a business we had to learn from those who are already doing it successfully.
Those 8 months have rapidly passed, Estilo Tendances showed a massive growth in traffic, content quality, and team-wise, but still no money yet. My safety nets were gone and I was about to start a new life, with literally no plan, besides the fact that I wanted to make Estilo Tendances profitable and become a coach, so I can help people be who they were meant to be.
The summer of 2014, was probably the hardest summer of my life because I had to start a job that I really did not like – I was a Housekeeping Coordinator in Bethany Beach, DE (beautiful place, where I had a beautiful apartment that I truly miss). I was trapped in having to work to pay my bills, at the same time I knew this job was only for the season, so after these 3 months I would really have to have my ducks in a row. In my 2 days off, I would work on my self-development and monetizing my business. After less than a month, I realized that in order to save money I needed more money, so the only option I saw possible, was to get a part-time job. This is how I ended up with only one day off and making $50-$80 extra by cleaning houses for a few hours. As you can imagine, it did not last long. I ended up being frustrated that my business was not going anywhere and those extra bucks were just not cutting it. I had to pull the plug and devote myself to the business. I had to set some goals and accomplish them.
Around the same time, I found out about Institute for Integrative Nutrition (find more about how you can become a health coach here) and I knew I had to enroll and become a health coach – my gut was telling me. Already scared that I might not have the money to buy my MacBook (my goal for last summer) or have a savings account to help me until I make money from Estilo Tendances, I was about to enter a new world, the one of loans.
This was the toughest decision I had to make and it was all based on trust and faith. I kept on telling myself:
“If this opportunity appeared in my life now, there must be a reason for it. Just because I don’t see how I will be able to pay my tuition it does not mean that I won’t pay it.“
We are talking here about a $7,500 loan – if it’s a lot or not, it does not matter, for me it was huge, because I was doing it on my own, with no safety net.
August was the month when the real work began. I started to work like crazy, after work each day and also in my days off. I was obsessed with self-development, I knew that in order to make my dreams a reality I had to work on my beliefs and on what I think it is possible.
September was the month when I bought my MacBook air, the most beautiful jewelry I have ever gotten. The same month we were invited to go to New York Fashion Week (read all about it here) and the first month when Estilo Tendances made money. Oh, and yes, the month I started my Health Coaching school and the last month of working for a different company than my own.
Thankfully, I still had savings to support myself in October, not having a job, but working as much as possible to build my business. Because rent is 5 times higher in the US than in Romania, not to mention food and other expenses, we decided to come back home and figure everything out as we move along.
Setting And Achieving My Goals Long Before I Was Ready
At the end of October, we got back home and this is when the real life started to happen. With only $200 in my pocket and a loan for $7,000 (I was paying each month $199), I was looking for rent feeling hungry for my dream life. It was not easy at all, it took us 2 weeks to find a place to move, after endless calls and fights, both with our parents (who did not understand why we were looking for rent when we have no jobs) and between each other because we were confused as well
“Should we move in with our parents? Are we doing the right thing here?”
But, if you trust the universe and if you trust in the process, good things happen. I made it a goal and I applied my blueprint and guess what? We got a beautiful place, close to the city center, in a safe neighborhood and for a price we could only dream about. No one could believe it – we actually found a very affordable place in only 2 weeks. (I say “only” because others looked for a month without any success)
Just because we had the place did not mean we had more money. So, we had to work hard and figure out a way to monetize our businesses (I had Estilo Tendances and Mihai had Male Extravaganza). With plenty of mistakes and huge frustrations, we learned what means to be an entrepreneur the hard way. There were days when we had to decide:
“Are we buying food or are we paying our bills?”
But somehow, we always got through it, month after month. It made us fight more for our dreams and make them happen. How? Through a set of steps that we implemented in order to set our goals and make them happen.
All my big AHA moments came when I was studying. This year they came in the form of B-School, which was the best investment of 2015 and which gave me the clarity for my business. After gaining the clarity, which comes from action – you do not listen to some guru and you figure it out. You actually have to sit quietly and answer a few dozen questions until you realize what you want, how you want it and when will you do it. After I had a much healthier vision than before, I was able to start setting and achieving goals.
The goals that I already achieved in only a few months are:
- Making a steady income that is able to cover all the bills
- Launching WellFitsYou
- Having my first clients for VIP 1:1 Health Coaching service
- Moving to a better place where everything is brand new – including the kitchen and all the pots and pans and utensils (this was a hidden dream of mine)
- Doubling Estilo Tendances’ traffic every 2 months
- A lot of other small goals that get accomplished every week
So, how did I do all this, with so little money and so many bills? What is my secret? Because I want to empower you and any of your friends that get to see this article, I decided to share my own blueprint on setting and achieving goals. Most of the things you might already know, because nothing is new, I am not reinventing the wheel, I am just expressing the things that I noticed to work with all my goals.
How To Set And Achieve Any Goal
I am not going to tell you why it is important to have goals or how many types of goals you should have: daily, weekly, monthly, yearly, etc. I consider you already know how important they are and that your only struggle at this moment is to set them better and to find a way to achieve them faster.
I have tried to set a goal and achieve it so many times and I have failed so many times, that I was forced to develop a blueprint that will save me time and get me more focused and less frustrated. You might have the perfect goal and then stop – the overwhelming thought of “there are so many things to be done” would trap you and before taking any step towards it, you would just freeze and call it a day. Been there, done that, probably too many times I might add. At the same time, I fought back, I raised above my limitations and were able to accomplish my goals in spite of how hard it seemed. There are a few steps you should take every time you want to set and achieve any goal.
- Put it on paper