What does it mean to boss up? It means to the boss of your own life, pursue goals you want, define success for yourself and live life on your terms.
Define Boss Life For Yourself
We all interpret the phrase “be your own boss” differently. For some, it means having good control over your workday, making your own schedule, or making passive income, or being self-employed and running your own business; for others, it may allude to being independent and having full authority over your free time and life decisions; for still others, it may mean having the freedom to pursue interests and dreams. For some of you, it may still mean something else.
Whatever it means to you, the first step is to recognize and define it for yourself so that you can put it into play in your own life.
Here are some universal practices for maintaining your boss status.
1. Keep the Goal in Mind
Never lose sight of where you want to end up. There will be plenty of obstacles, challenges, and hardships. There’s no fixed pathway to achieve your goals. A friend may do it differently than you, but the outcome may be the same. So remember the goal and keep going. Here’s how:
- Create a vision board.; this can be a physical or virtual board (e.g., Pinterest) where you can continuously add new ideas and sources of inspiration as you find them.
- Journaling: record your progress so that you can see how far you’ve come and keep track of what’s left to do
- Tell people you trust: they’ll serve as reminders and sources of strength if you falter or veer off course.
- Make a list associated with each goal and discipline yourself to accomplish one thing each day.
- Join interest groups that have similar goals that you are pursuing. Surrounding yourself with like-minded people can go a long way toward helping you keep your eye on the endgame.
2. Love the Process
It’s important to not compare your journey to others and also to embrace whatever process you do adopt for yourself. Your process is uniquely yours, so own it and do your best to learn as much as you possibly can along the way.
And remember, sometimes you have to do what you hate to get to where you want. Love the process.
3. Be Open to New Experiences & People
No matter how much you know, or think you know, stay open to meeting new people and trying new experiences. There is always more to learn, see and do. There is always someone out there who can teach you something, maybe even something about yourself, that you hadn’t realized before.
Intentionally staying open will help you to continue to grow as a person and as a professional.
Another way to put it is:
4. Stay Uncomfortable
Getting out of your comfort zone is the best way to grow, both personally and professionally. If you don’t challenge yourself, you’ll never know what you’re capable of.
Here’s how to start:
- Want to be an entrepreneur and have some great business ideas? Start a business plan. Is it a home-based business or an online business? Do your research and see what is doable.
- Want to start a side hustle? After working your full time job, do some research on this new venture.
- Afraid of public speaking? Take classes and learn some techniques to help you through it.
- Perhaps you want to venture into real estate so you can generate passive income? Look into the best markets and learn what it takes to invest.
Sometimes just educating yourself on an idea can put you outside your comfort zone, because it means you are seriously considering it. You don’t need to jump at every idea going through your head, nor do you need to know exactly all the steps to take, but you should take one idea and give it a shot. Push yourself into an area that you are uncomfortable in; maybe you’ll succeed, maybe you’ll fail, but either way, you’ll learn a lot and it’ll make it easier for you to try again.
Networking is an important and often underrated tool. It is a skill that requires attention and practice and can pay off in the biggest ways.
Hand in hand with staying open to meeting new people and to new experiences, networking can show you options that may not have known were even available to you. The people you meet can open doors for you and help you achieve your goals!
6. Work on Yourself Daily
You are a work in progress; we all are. Aside from professional advancements, make sure to pay attention to yourself as well. Take care of yourself, take breaks, get sleep, learn ways to de-stress, read books that bring you joy and/or teach you something, and definitely make time to travel.
7. Edit Your Life Ruthlessly
Whether it’s people, habits, or superfluous tasks, be intentional of how you spend your time and energy. Being busy is not the same as being productive.
It’s also important to lett go of people that drag you down. Sometimes we are unable to move forward because we are hanging on to people in our lives. We do this out of sentiment, fear, obligation, or guilt; we know that if we were to take a step in a certain direction, we would lose those individuals from our lives. However, is that a bad thing? Is losing a friend that clearly doesn’t support you or your growth really a loss?
Anytime you focus on change or growth, you will alienate certain individuals. You have to weigh their importance in your life with how important your own progress is to you.
8. Above All: Be Yourself
There’s only one of you; so be the best boss version of yourself you can be.
To be your own boss isn’t just about running a business, making a career change or making money. It’s about making decisions for your own life, taking charge of how you spend your time, and ensuring that you continue to work and better yourself so that you can reach your full potential.
So, start today. Identify who you want to be, where you want to end up and make sure that everything you do and how you live your life is pushing you in the direction that you want to go.