As if there aren’t enough hurdles to overcome when running a business, your mindset shouldn’t be one of them. Sure, you need to make sure you’re paying your taxes and providing top-notch products and services to your clients and customers. However, if you don’t work on your money mindset, you can stunt your business growth and struggle with being profitable and enjoying the work you do.
I get it—years ago, I hated to even think about money. Even though I became debt-free and thrived in my personal finances, looking at money from a business perspective was another story. I worried so much about how much I was making, yet I was too scared to look at my bookkeeping. And it didn’t do me any favors.
The reality is, money can be about the numbers, but it goes way beyond that—it’s your attitude and belief around those numbers. It represents how you feel about yourself and your business and ultimately shows up in your decision-making process. As in, if you believe that more money leads to resentment, you won’t want to earn more, even if it’ll help you make some desired lifestyle changes.
You’re not alone in thinking that changing the way you feel about your business finances will help you. Maybe you already have a successful business with a healthy profit margin. Or you have clients you absolutely love working with.
If so, great! But that doesn’t mean there can’t be room for improvement. Seriously, think long and hard about some of the aspects about your business that you don’t like.
Maybe the thought of looking at how much you owe in quarterly taxes makes you angry and resentful toward Uncle Sam.
Maybe you’re pitching to bigger, national chains and you’re scared of undercharging.
Or maybe you don’t follow up with late payments until months later, and even then you don’t follow up more than once.
Experiencing any of the above scenarios (and countless others) is perfectly normal even if you’re seeing success in your business. Thinking about money—whether it’s earning it, spending it, or saving it—is still an uncomfortable subject. To move beyond it, it requires having the right money mindset.
Here are a few mindsets, or affirmations, you need to master in order to create a thriving business you love.
‘I forgive myself for my past money mistakes’
Look, we all make mistakes—it’s part of being human. Part of what’s so interesting (and dare I say fun) about running a business is figuring out what works and doesn’t. It’s impossible to know exactly what you need when starting out. Even still, plenty of unexpected things can happen. You know, like a global pandemic or receiving a batch of defective products you can’t sell.
Whatever your business mistakes are, you can move on from them. Instead of feeling guilty or shaming yourself over them, forgive yourself and treat each mistake as a learning experience you can use to help further your business.
‘I am committed to working on my money blocks’
Money blocks are thoughts and beliefs you hold to be true about money that aren’t serving you. But believing them doesn’t make them true.
For example, I used to believe that I had to work longer hours to earn more money because I was taking care of an infant. This belief led me to work 10–12 hours each day, resulting in sleep deprivation and not being present for my family.
I ended up shifting that belief to one where I told myself it’s possible to earn more money working five hours a day, with plenty of time to pick up my son from day care and give myself a few hours of alone time. It took a long time to work through this block, but I’m happy to say I don’t work 10 hours a day anymore.
The first step to removing your money blocks is to recognize what they are. Grab a notebook or open a dedicated file on your computer, and start jotting down anything that comes up. See how you can shift that into something more positive.
‘I am allowed to outsource parts of my business’
This mindset is especially hard if you’re a solopreneur or self-employed. In some cases, you think you can’t afford to hire someone to help you, or you believe there’s no point in hiring someone because it doesn’t take you a lot of time to do the task yourself.
However, outsourcing frees you up to do other tasks that only you can do to move your business forward. It doesn’t matter whether those tasks you outsource are ones you can (or even like to) do.
If you’re feeling anxious, start small or identify a task you know will benefit from having a reputable professional handling it, like a bookkeeper. You can even pay for an automated piece of software to free up routine tasks—it’s friendly on your business wallet.
‘I will not feel guilty about hiring a nanny’
This mantra is specific to moms because many tend to feel guilty about leaving their children to work. I totally get it—I used to think I could juggle having a baby in my lap and type away on my computer.
Even if you don’t have children, think about hiring a cleaner, a cook, or someone to deliver your groceries to you. These tasks will free you up to work on your business, even if it’s helping you clear up the mental headspace for now.
‘I’m allowed to schedule time to work on my business’
Working on your business means looking at the way you’re running it and seeing if you can change any of your systems or processes. Maybe your calendar software isn’t cutting it anymore and it’s time to find something that’ll give your clients the ability to schedule a consultation call and pay you at the same time.
Growing your business also means taking the time to invest in yourself and the business. There are so many courses out there that can help you level up your operations, or hiring a coach to help you overcome some challenges can also do wonders.
Start by scheduling small chunks of time to do this. Even if you don’t have anything specific you’re looking for, commit to that time anyway.
‘I am open to opportunities that serve the growth of my business’
It seems silly to think you’re not open to opportunities to help grow your business. But the simple truth is that some of us are scared of success or think that it’s too much work to take advantage of an opportunity. Or we’re so scared that other opportunities won’t come our way that we latch on to the first thing we come across.
Opening yourself up to the right opportunities requires patience, understanding what you truly want, and getting clear on your business values. That means you’ll have to be OK with accepting assignments even when they feel scary—or turning down work when you’re too busy.
‘I am capable of running a business that serves my life goals’
Running a business is great and all, but one of the reasons is to help you in your overall life pursuits. Perhaps you want a more flexible schedule to pick up your little ones from school. Or you want enough money to start a nonprofit for your local community.
Wherever those lifestyle goals are, it’s OK to want them—so give yourself permission to allow your business to help you reach them.
Mastering your money mindset when it comes to your business isn’t going to be easy. It’ll take a lot of dedication and daily prompts, but it’s totally worth it.