“What more could life hold if I was more intentional about pursuing it?”
I was reminded of this question while hearing from Thomas Hicks on his return to the Hectic Podcast for a special bonus episode.
On the podcast, Thomas shared his experience with moving to L.A. to pursue acting. Though this adventure was overwhelmingly freeing for him, he also struggled with self-limitations. He even got a tattoo to remind himself what he was capable of, no matter what self-doubts he was facing. Using this motivation, he has done great things.
But it’s not the great things that Thomas values the most.
No matter how the pursuit of his dreams ends, he has learned that the journey he’s taken is what matters most. This process is where he’s met incredible people, learned more about the world and himself, and grown into the person he is today. Even when his goals change or his pursuit ends in disappointment, he still has everything he’s experienced and earned along the way.
As I listened to Thomas’ story, I was reminded of the question I opened with, one I’ve been working through myself. You see, <tweet-link>sometimes self-limitations aren’t talking yourself out of pursuing something exciting. Sometimes they’re failing to have that dream or goal in the first place.<tweet-link>
There are many ways that being too comfortable in life can keep you from the growth and experiences that are available to you. Whether you’re afraid to leave your comfort zone or just stuck without direction, every day that you give in to this inertia is one day further from the person you want to be.
Even worse, you may not even recognize the ways that you’re limiting yourself. In particular, I wanted to touch on a few ways that you may be hurting your business potential. Your business’ success determines how much you make and what you can afford to pursue, so this might be the best place to start for all of your life goals.
Your income does more than just pay the bills. When you undervalue your work, you rob yourself of the opportunity to pursue experiences.
You may not be able to afford to advance a hobby or skill, take a much-needed vacation, support a cause you believe in, or have time to meet new people. You’ll be so focused on the day-to-day that you may struggle to think of anything beyond it.
Take a moment to think about all the things you would do if someone offered to increase your annual income by 20%. Now, think about the ways you could achieve that increase yourself. As freelancers, our potential is practically limitless. We can achieve the things we want for our tomorrows if we start today.
Look, I get it. These platforms simplify the process of finding new business, by far one of the toughest parts of being an independent creator. At the same time, they also take a significant chunk of your income. You typically lose money to platform commission fees, monthly subscription costs, and may even have to pay to bid on projects. No matter how much you make, this adds up quickly.
Scary as it seems, learning to network and pursue work outside of these platforms is essential to business growth. You can set your own rules and prices without worrying about breaching your agreement with the platform. You can also find businesses who aren’t on any platform, increasing the pool of potential clients. As you determine the best way to grow your business, you can do it on your terms.
If you don’t know where you’re going, you won’t ever get there. In fact, there’s a good chance you won’t go anywhere at all. Chase the experiences Thomas holds in such high value by setting a goal to pursue. It could be landing a new client, learning a skill to increase your value, or even spending a day working at a coffee shop rather than your home office. Find concrete, measurable ways to stretch yourself. Take the first step of a journey that may lead to big things and growth.
Even as you focus on your dreams, don’t forget that success isn’t limited to achieving your initial goal or having everything play out as you expected. Stay open to the unexpected and willing to follow the journey through its twists and turns. As long as you expect and believe that any outcome you fight for is the “right” one, you can’t lose.
Get the full story here to learn about Thomas’ journeys, his wish for the world in 2022, and tips for being the best podcast guest ever.