As my business rapidly grew throughout 2020, I started looking for more. For more support than the practical and strategic.
Then I came across a program called 75 Hard, a mental strength and self-discipline program by Andrew Facila, and I knew I had to take part. I listened to the podcast episode once and was hooked to begin my own journey. And while it’s all about self-accountability, I decided to share my journey with my own community over on Instagram.
As the name suggests, it was really hard! There were times where this new regime was incredibly inconvenient as I did it alongside building my business. For the first six weeks, I had to keep going back and re-listen to that podcast episode to just remind myself: why did I commit to this? Am I crazy? Do I really need this in my life right now? But it changed the game for me big time, especially when it comes to how I run my business.
Consulting.com describes the importance of self-discipline as “...not about which time management app or day planner you use. There are a million and one ways to plan, track and measure your good habits, but they are all useless if you can't form those habits in the first place. Self-discipline is ultimately a state of the mind. If you want to train yourself to be more disciplined, you have to shift your mindset and see the world in a new light.”
Mental strength and self-discipline is relevant to everything that comes with being an entrepreneur. It’s crucial when you’re building, growing, and scaling your own business, and when you want to get things done. But it doesn’t happen overnight, it requires consistent work and implementation. You need to take your mental strength as seriously as when you go to the gym to build muscle.
As humans, we are conditioned to take the easy way out, and to make things as easy as possible for ourselves. When things get hard, or we don’t see our entrepreneurial journey going exactly as planned, we want to give up, to pivot, blame the algorithm, blame our coach, or blame the world. But that’s exactly when we need to show up for ourselves the most.
If you’ve ever invested in a program, and half way through you fell off the face of the earth or you purchased a self-paced course, only to forget about it after the welcome module. If you’re simply tired of starting something and never following through, breaking promises to yourself like reading more, drinking more water, or trying to be healthier, this is for you.
Entrepreneurship isn't always a constant success after success and making more money incrementally. In the beginning especially, there are going to be a lot of ups, downs, and everything in between. And for all the really great days - and all the bad days - there's going to be periods where you plateau or remain consistent. That's okay - it’s part of the journey.
Being an entrepreneur is an emotional roller coaster; not everything will go the way you plan. We all handle change differently and for some, it can be hard to accommodate. But building that mental strength and self-discipline helps with this because you are going to be stronger at working through the mindset and the emotions. You’ll start having that self-awareness to say, “Okay, this has happened before. This is how I handled it. I know I got this.” Anytime you are down, you pick yourself back up, faster than the last.
You have to have a reason for why you are doing this. If you don’t have a specific goal in mind, then it is too easy to give up when the going gets tough. You simply won’t care enough to push through.
As my business was growing, I knew I needed mindset support in addition to the business mentorship and strategy I was already receiving. I wanted, I needed to build my mental strength and self-discipline, so I could keep achieving my goals. So ask yourself: why are you doing this? What is the outcome you want to achieve? Because if it’s a superficial reason, I guarantee you that you will not make it far.
Success doesn’t happen overnight, but it also doesn’t happen when one big thing is done. Every successful multi-millionaire will tell you that it is all about the consistent daily habits that they undertake without compromise. It can be anything from meditating, or working out, or eliminating mindless decisions daily by eating the same thing for breakfast.
You also need to stop making excuses for yourself. Have you ever told yourself that you can’t eat healthy because you don’t have time to prepare your own food? If you are giving yourself all of these excuses in your day-to-day life, you’ll probably be making excuses in your business, too.
You need to work on being the solution to your excuses. Using the food example, if you ‘don’t have time’, could you spend one afternoon a week batch cooking and freezing meals for the week? Creating that discipline in daily life will ultimately help you in entrepreneurship, it’s all about taking it one step at a time.
Measuring your progress is a powerful way to motivate yourself. Whether you use an app or simply track your progress in a notebook, the act of measuring will make a huge difference. During 75 Hard, I had to take a progress photo every day. It was definitely my least favorite part of the challenge (especially since I wasn’t in it for a fitness transformation), but it cemented the importance of tracking my goals.
Clearly tracking things that are important will help you better understand your performance and how you can improve. It’s also a great paper trail to track the small changes and milestones that start happening in your business and life.
But remember: you’re measuring your progress against your past self, not anyone else. We're not here to compete with anybody else, but the person that you were yesterday, the person that you were last night, how can we be better every 24 hours?
Discipline is not going to happen by reading a quote or a really great post from someone that you admire. It’s about making the commitment to yourself to keep up the small consistent habits everyday, that eventually add up to make big shifts. That’s what’s going to help you build the mental strength to support you in showing up for your business...
...Especially when you don't want to, when you feel like no one is listening, like no one is watching, or if you ever feel like everything else around you is crumbling down.
I got so much out of 75 Hard - I’ve seen the difference it has made within myself, and others who have participated. It has been pivotal in my growth as an entrepreneur, that I've implemented an inspired discipline challenge into my signature program, Pivoting Digital. I know I’ve set the foundations to grow with my goals, even when it’s hard, through intentional action and consistent habits, I'm excited to help my clients do the same.
Building self-discipline and mental strength will change the way you see things and how you support yourself during your entrepreneurial journey. It will not only help you in the immediate future, but for years to come as you continue to grow and scale in your business, and life.
The documented journey of 75 hard saved in a highlight on Instagram