This Sneaky Mindset May Be Holding Your Business Back by Meliss JakubovicThere’s been a lot of talk lately about imposter syndrome and how massively it impacts entrepreneurs. But, there’s a lesser-known mindset that could be having an even bigger effect on your success: the scarcity mindset. Anyone can fall victim to it but entrepreneurs, in particular, suffer from this one. It’s the belief that there is a finite amount of money/success/clients/resources and that one must grab as much of it as they can. This mindset limits growth because it often leads to accepting less-than-ideal situations in one’s business.
The scarcity mindset isn’t one most of us know we even carry around, it’s that good at disguising itself. It’s often hiding in plain sight as easily-justifiable business decisions. Every time freelancers and small business owners discount their work or take on less-than-ideal clients because they are afraid that opportunities are limited— that’s the scarcity talking. The opposite of scarcity is abundance; the thing every soulful and mindful business owner aims to manifest.
Now, sometimes we can think we’re manifesting abundance while we’re actively working against ourselves. Here’s an example:
A client reaches out to you to see if they can get a fifteen-minute strategy call before they agree to sign up for your new course. They’re not sure if the course is right for them and they haven’t been working with you long. However, you’ve been working hard on setting boundaries and manifesting money, so you decline the free call and, instead, direct them toward your one-hour strategy call package.
I am all about empowering business owners to charge their value and not a penny less. But in terms of mindset, there’s a disconnect here. By pushing a client toward paying you for your knowledge, what you’re saying to the universe is “I do not have an abundance of time or knowledge, so I need to grab as much of each as I can.” The prioritization of wanting more money over giving away a small amount of knowledge demonstrates that you are not overflowing with either, but that you’re viewing things from a point of scarcity. To make that abundance manifest, you have to feel, think, and demonstrate abundance in the areas of your life where you’d like to receive it.
When we write mantras, we always put them in the present tense. This tells our body and our mind that we are ready for them to manifest. In order to receive abundance, you must be abundance. And, sometimes, that means giving away fifteen minutes of your time. I’m not saying work for free, but if you’ve already got ideas that can help someone, share them!
The scarcity mindset can pop up in other parts of your business as well. Think about all the times you’ve decided against taking a course, going to a retreat, or getting a certification. You didn’t have the money, you were too busy, the timing didn’t work out, you weren’t ready, maybe next year… Sound familiar? The thing is, when you tell yourself “no,” you’re buying into the idea that you are not enough: not wealthy enough, not practiced enough, not skilled enough, not smart enough. (Yep, there’s that scarcity mindset.) When we repeat those things to ourselves, whether deliberately or subconsciously, we start to believe them. That’s when your business stalls and you start to feel crummy. If you really want to take your business to the next level with that training or that course, you make it work. You find a way; you sell things to make the money, you cash in your sick days, you work all day and go to class at night. Because, when you tell yourself “yes,” you’re telling the world that you are enough. Even if you fail, you’re still telling yourself you’re worth the risk of failure. That kind of personal investment can only lead to bigger and better things.
Scarcity pops up in our language, too. How often have you replied “busy, tired, stressed” when someone asks how you are? How frequently do you complain about not having enough hours in the day, or helpers around the house, or employees, or sales? All those words add up to a big pile of yikes. Remember how mantras are always in present tense, because the brain manifests what it hears? Well, your brain is hearing you say these words all day long and it’s starting to believe them. As silly as it sounds, simply swapping “I have to” with “I get to” will make a major difference in how you think and feel about your day. “I get to on-board two new clients,” sounds like a much bigger brag than “I have to on-board two new clients.” Your brain hears “I get to” and the reward center lights up! You feel better about the situation immediately because you’re manifesting joy and abundance with your language. Sometimes, people tell me that they disagree with this particular strategy because it feels inauthentic and they want to be honest about when they’re feeling tired, or less-than, or stressed. And it’s okay to still be honest and authentic, but you can do it without coming from a place of lack. Let’s face it, not everything about being self-employed is awesome. But instead of saying “I’m so tired today, I was swamped with paperwork,” try saying “I was blessed with an abundance of clients this week so I’m choosing to rest a little longer today.” I’ll admit, it’s a tough swap to make (and we all love to vent a little), but it will help you be mindful of the ways abundance is already manifesting in your life… though, perhaps, not where you expected.
If you’re feeling like you’ve been trying to manifest success in your business for ages and you’re still not finding the success you desire, the scarcity mindset might be the culprit. The good news is that you can overcome this mindset and, when you do, you will see a major shift in your manifestation. There’s a three-step process that I use to overcome the scarcity mindset when it tries to throw a wrench in my plans.
Are you marketing your business from a place of abundance or lack? Here are a few things to consider while you take a look at your business:
“Free” is not the four-letter word you think it is. It’s actually okay, and encouraged, to give some of your knowledge away for free. Yes, I know that sounds like it goes against all things business, but free isn’t always a bad thing. Opt-in freebies, like e-books and guides, are proven to be effective beginnings to sales funnels. Free 15-minute strategy calls are a great way to show leads that, not only do you know your stuff, but you have so much knowledge that you’re not afraid to give some of it away. Take a look at your current marketing strategy to see if there is a place where you can demonstrate abundance and keep your mind open to the possibility of dropping some free knowledge bombs every now and then.
But, you don’t need to discount. There’s a difference between being willing to give away some of your expertise for free and haggling on your price. If you find yourself willing to discount your rates for every client who pushes back against your pricing, it’s probably because you’re afraid to walk away from a sale. You aren’t required to work with every lead you meet, especially if they’re not willing to pay what you’re worth. Which brings me to my next point…
Not every lead is the right lead. I can’t tell you how many business owners I’ve met who refuse to niche down or target a specific customer profile. I hear a lot of “I don’t want to exclude anyone,” or “the skills I have could help anyone, really” or even “I’d rather be a jack of all trades because it opens up the market.” (Insert horror-movie-worthy scream here.) Maybe you’re wondering how marketing to an abundance of customers is coming from a place of lack. Well, by not niching down or narrowing your target market, you’re really saying “I want access to all the money possible,” which is just another way of saying “There’s only so much money out there and I want as much of it as possible!” Ta-da! That’s scarcity. Narrow your market, niche down your business, and tell the universe that you want to work with only the most aligned, perfect-fit, meant-to-be clients out there. You’ll be surprised what a difference that makes.
I know a few simple changes that you can try today that will help you market from a place of abundance and manifest some seriously good stuff:
- Visit my website and download my free “Finding Your Dream Customer” guide. Fill it out and then vow to target only that customer persona for the next week.
- Go through your leads and stop chasing anyone who doesn’t line up with your dream customer. Better yet, set aside those customers and the ones you’ve been chasing who just aren’t responding to you.
- Market with Create a vision board that includes: who you want to work with, what you want your business to look like, where you want to be in six months, and how you feel as you work towards that.
It’s surprising how many areas of one’s life are impacted by the scarcity mindset. Whether or not you’re struggling with scarcity, these are practices that you can use to manifest all the good things you desire in your business. My team and I have killer strategies that can help you manifest major abundance in your life… Like, hundreds-of-leads kind of abundance. (I’m not exaggerating: one of my clients got 211 leads in one weekend using my strategies.) If you’re still struggling, just reach out!
Meliss Jakubovic is an Online Marketing Strategist and Facebook Ad Expert to women coaches, health and wellness entrepreneurs, and service providers who are ready to generate leads, make more sales, and fill their programs. She is the owner of Meliss Marketing in Atlanta, GA, founder of the Social Marketing Academy, and author of “#Expert: The Business Owner’s Guide To Building Authority On Social Media”. When she’s not making a difference with students and clients, she is busy doing yoga, folk dancing, and raising her two children, Shai and Ilan.