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The Antidote to Shiny Idea Syndrome

When we dive headfirst into the bustling online world, we’re bombarded with advice, tantalizing ideas, and more opportunities than we can shake a stick at. Suddenly, we find ourselves being pulled in a gazillion directions at once. And often we get pulled away from the work we set out to do in the first place.

It’s the modern entrepreneurial ailment: Shiny Idea Syndrome.

Shiny Idea Syndrome is the ever-tempting pitfall that solo business owners encounter in their entrepreneurial journey. It’s that thrilling rush of excitement and distraction triggered by the allure of novel strategies, fresh ways of attracting clients, the latest tools, snazzy designs, and all things new and shiny.

While these shiny ideas may seem like the proverbial pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, they can be a double-edged sword. They draw your attention away from consistency, which, admittedly, might not have the same sparkle but is undeniably more effective.

Shiny ideas are not inherently evil; innovation is essential for growth. But it becomes problematic when it leads to a scattered focus, a lack of follow-through, and a perpetually changing landscape that confuses both you and your clients.

Staying consistent might not always feel glamorous, but it’s the secret to long-term success in the world of solo entrepreneurship.

Here’s some stuff you can try…

1. Do Less, Better

Instead of diversifying your offers, targeting multiple niches, and trying every marketing strategy under the sun, try to narrow it down. Focus on what you do best, refine it, and deliver it well. By honing your expertise, being really specific about what you offer, who you serve and how you show up, you’re more likely to become the go-to authority in your niche, and less likely to spread yourself too thin over multiple strategies. Working solo sometimes you don’t even notice that you’re over-diversifying. A red flag is when you never have enough time, and doing your weekly to-do list means rewriting the same tasks on the list week after week.

How many offers, niches, and strategies are you currently running?

2. Focus on Building Relationships

It’s easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of social media and forget about the heart of your business—relationships. You’ll never regret nurturing connections with your audience, past clients, collaborators, and fellow entrepreneurs. These are the people who can support your journey. Authentic relationships are the backbone of success. It’s not about chasing after the latest shiny marketing tactic; it’s about fostering genuine, mutually supportive networks that’ll stand the test of time.

Honestly my network of peers and clients has consistently inspired me, motivated me, and referred me over the years. I’m tremendously grateful and humbled by these amazing people. Social media algorithms do NOT offer such love.

Do you get caught up with jumping through social media hoops or do you focus on connection with real people?

3. Mind Yourself

As a solo business owner, your well-being is paramount. If you’re burning the midnight oil, compromising your values, or constantly feeling anxious about your business, it’s time for a step back. Shiny ideas might promise quick results, but they often lead to burnout and lackluster outcomes. When your heart is fully invested in what you do, your passion and commitment are what will sustain your business in the long run.

And don’t get me started on comparisons!! It’s a slippery slope comparing yourself to successful folks online. An online presence is NEVER the full story. Successful people almost always have a big team and big marketing budget behind them, even if they don’t talk about it. I’ve found myself so many times trying to implement strategies alone that would normally take a team to set up. I’ve sprinted to the edge of burn out so many times by pursuing shiny ideas.

Over 10 years at this game, I’ve learned these simple rules.

  • Keep it simple and do less better – there’s still excitement and creativity in a specific focus. Consistency doesn’t seem sexy, but it can be the key to achieving the things you want to achieve.
  • People are all we really have – the human beings that we connect with are ultimately more important than data metrics and “likes”.
  • Feeling unwell is bad for you and your business will suffer… which in turn causes more stress… which in turn is definitely not good for business because your decisions will come from a place of panic or frustration… which in turn causes more stress, over-work and yeah, feeling more unwell. I’ve been there more times than I like to admit.

I’ve seen so many people spreading themselves too thin, stressing themselves out and losing sight of their initial vision. Working for yourself is an incredible journey that allows you freedom and flexibility, gives you agency in your decisions and gives you the opportunity to serve and connect with people in a really meaningful way. But shiny idea syndrome is one of those things that can sneakily sabotage you.

Did this resonate?
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