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Business owners: think bigGER and break free from limiting expectations

Chalk board with 'Think BIGGER' written over it
Have you checked in with and challenged your aspirations?

Today, I want to share a personal story that has shaped my journey as a creative small business owner and explore the impact of expectations on your vision and purpose.

In my early 20s, my father delivered a blow to my aspirations, telling me that my expectations were too high. He was grappling with his own challenges during a midlife crisis. While his words were a reflection of his struggles, they planted a seed of self-doubt in me that has persisted for years.

Despite being aware of this impact, I find myself self-limiting, especially when it comes to envisioning the scope of my purpose and business. It's as if there's an invisible barrier that prevents me from thinking beyond a certain point.

Perhaps you too have encountered moments where your expectations hit resistance. It's crucial to recognise that these limitations often stem from internalised beliefs and past experiences.

So, as a business owner, what's limiting your expectations and holding you back and, more importantly, how can you break free from these constraints and think bigger?

1. Identify the root cause

Take a moment to reflect on the origins of your expectations. Are they based on your genuine desires and capabilities, or are they influenced by external factors or past experiences? For instance, are you trying to achieve something that someone else wants for you?

Understanding the root cause is the first step towards dismantling limiting beliefs.

2. Challenge negative narratives

Acknowledge the negative narratives that may be influencing your expectations, they are there afterall to keep you safe and ignoring them won't make them go away.

Instead, reminding yourself of your accomplishments can be useful and for some people self-affirmations work, but I find surrounding myself with a support system of people that encourage me to dream big to be most effective.

3. Embrace a growth mindset

Embracing challenges as opportunities for learning and growth make life much more interesting. How much satisfaction do you think you would derive from everything being easy?!

Understanding that your abilities and potential are not fixed is rather exciting, but it will take effort.

4. Set realistic goals

While it's important to dream big, setting realistic, achievable goals as stepping stones towards the dream can help build confidence on the way. Celebrate each milestone as a triumph that brings you closer to your ultimate goal. And do celebrate the effort that’s involved too!

5. Seek mentorship and guidance

Connect with mentors and peers who have overcome similar challenges. Learning from their experiences can provide valuable insights and encouragement.

Remember, you are not alone in your journey. Do reach out when it feels tough going.

6. Cultivate self-compassion

Be kind to yourself. Understand that setbacks are a natural part of any journey. You are, however, allowed to feel pissed-off when things don’t go according to plan. But do approach challenges with self-compassion, learning from them rather than seeing them as failures.

I know that breaking free from my limiting expectations is an ongoing process, but thinking bigger is essential for me to be a truly successful business owner.

It will be for you too.

It requires a little self-reflection (we’re not talking navel-gazing here through), resilience, and a commitment to nurturing your creative spirit to think bigger and dream beyond our current boundaries.

Fancy doing this together? Let’s talk!


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