Murray and I were driving back from San Diego the other day and he looked over and said, “Marisa, the way I see your role in 2018 is that you’re ONLY doing 3 things in the business: high-level strategy, facilitating and creating content. You delegate literally everything else.”
WHOA. Huge mental pushback.
I mean, there are SO many things in our business that pass through me. I am the linchpin of everything in our company, and so many balls would drop if I stepped back. So, to say I resisted the idea is an understatement LOL.
Then… a sudden moment of clarity, as I zoomed out and saw that the real bottleneck to growth in our company? It wasn’t the size of our team — it was me.
And In that moment I was able to ask and answer the questions: what would happen in our business if I only did those 3 things? What if I were actually free to focus 100% of my time on high-level strategy, facilitation and content creation.
I realized that if I could actually figure out how do it, then our potential for growth was actually unlimited…
As Gay Hendricks wrote in his seminal book The Big Leap, there’s a huge difference between the things you’re great at, and your “genius zone” where you truly add value to the world that nobody else can.
And I know first-hand just how seductive it is keep doing things you’re good at, just because you’re good at them, and because you can.
I started my career as a film producer and I’m really good at managing a ton of details and getting a lot of things done. I’m an implementer. And that’s both a blessing and a curse. I’ve continued to wear the implementer hat in our business for too long, making sure that all our projects and departments were moving forward…
So I truly know ALL of the logical reasons why to continue doing the things you’re good at. Like me, you’re damn good at it. It saves money. Or simply because it’s just easier & quicker to just do it yourself than train someone else to do it for you.
It seems logical, but it’s a trap that keeps you stuck where you are, and the critical thing I’ve seen in my own journey from being a struggling artist working in the non-profit and documentary film world to building a multiple-7-figure business is that at each new income-and-impact level, I’ve had to change my thinking… my mindset… and my role in the business.
Each new level of business has required something new from me…
I’ve had to let go of old identities and self-perceptions to allow for a bigger role over and over and over again.
The truth is:
- You can’t build a 6-figure business with the same level of thinking it took to be a broke dreamer.
- You can’t build a 7-figure business with the same level of thinking it took to build a 6-figure business.
- And you can’t build an 8-figure business with the same level of thinking it took to build a 7-figure business.
Here’s what MY personal journey looks like…
LEAP #1: Job -> 6-figure business:
In order to make the first leap from having a job to building a 6-figure business, I had to let go of limitations around self-worth and pricing, so I could recognize the real value I bring to my students, customers and clients. I also had to develop self-trust that I had the resourcefulness within me to make choices, “figure things out” and everything would be just fine… as long as I kept putting one foot in front of the other and moving forward.
LEAP #2: 6-figure business -> 7-figure business
In order to make the next leap from having a 6-figure business to having a 7-figure business, I had to let go of perfectionism, the need to feel like I was in control, and the desire to do everything “right”. The only way to leverage and scale our work was to test and experiment with new ideas, see what worked and what didn’t, then adjust and pivot from there… and the only way to do that is to let go of attachment to the result. To be willing to fail. And fail fast. To admit when I was wrong. And to celebrate when I did something right.
LEAP #3: 7-figure business -> Multi 7-figure business+
Now, as we make the next leap to multi-7 and dare-I-say-it-even-8-figures, I’ve had to develop trust in others. I’ve had to learn how to put my baby in the arms of someone else, and empower others to carry our collective vision forward into the world. I’ve also had to embrace systems and put my big girl panties on with all sorts of legal, tax and financial things that the artist in me didn’t want to learn. I had to shift from my knee-jerk, “I don’t want to do that” or “I’m not good at that” or “I’m not the kind of person who _____” or even “I’ve never done that before” to being the kind of person who says “I believe in this and I know there is a way.”
Now, I’m in the process of letting go of old roles so I can step fully into my genius zone. It’s not going to happen over night and I’ve mapped out a year-long transition to fully let go of control of the day-to-day operations of our company and build the teams and the trust we need to serve at an even deeper level.
I often see students, customers and clients who are chomping at the bit to grow faster… and I get it.
If there was one thing I could reach back through time and say to the me of 5 years ago, to 33 year-old Marisa as she stepped into the entrepreneurial dream, it would be, “Take your time and embrace the journey. You are exactly where you need to be at this moment. You are building the body, the resilience and the mindset you need to support your empire.”
Looking back over the journey of the last 5 years, I now understand how important it is to plant the roots you need to support the tree.
I’m grateful we that we’ve grown at the rate that we have. Simply doubling our business each and every year, and no more. Because, truth be told, we needed that time to evolve into the entrepreneurs we are today who can sustain this level of business and impact.
That evolution doesn’t happen overnight. It happens day-by-day…
That’s why getting lottery winners usually lose it all within a few years. They didn’t “evolve” their way to more money. Who they were didn’t keep up, and as a result, they found an unconscious way to lose it all, and return to where they knew they belonged.
Now, as I look forward towards the next 5 years, I’m ready to embrace our next challenge.
Even a year ago, I would never have dared to dream that I could “get away” with only doing those 3 things in the business. Now – over the coming year, I’m ready to start letting go of all the things I’m good or great at, so that I can do only what I’ve been put on this earth to do. And only that.
So I have two choices for how I want to spend my time moving forward. I can focus on managing what is. Or I can focus on creating what can be.
And I’m ready to make the next big shift in our entrepreneurial journey.
Now tell me…
- What shifts are YOU willing to make to grow and evolve to the next level of income and impact?
- What do YOU need to let go of and who do you need to become to support your next-level vision?
Let me know in the comments, so we can support you in holding that vision and evolving into the person who will make that vision happen. You already are and have everything you need… now it’s time to step into it and surround yourself with a community who believes in you.