As an entrepreneur, it seems like there are endless new ideas and potential businesses at every turn in life. It’s easy to get distracted and keep starting new businesses before any of them manage to build up some traction, which is why it’s important to fight “shiny object syndrome” and stick with your ideas long term. Here’s how I cured my shiny object syndrome.
How I Cured My Shiny Object Syndrome for Good
I used to start new businesses, well, all the time. While part of me wanted to be one of those entrepreneurs who is known for their “one thing,” that just seemed to be going against my very nature. If I tried to cull my businesses down to just working on one, I’d inevitably rebel against it and start working on some new side projects. The problem with always starting new businesses is that it’s a form of self-sabotage and you don’t end up sticking with anything long enough for it to get traction.
That is, until I did this one thing differently. A couple months ago, I was organizing some files on my computer and going through archives of old blog posts and things and realized just how much content I’ve created over the years. Even more, I had literally hundreds of blog posts that were sitting around on this one site not making money anymore because the original site my articles were on (Squidoo) went out of business.
So, I decided to take all my articles off that site that wasn’t earning anything and copy and paste each of them into Evernote instead. These posts were definitely not all on one topic. In fact, they ranged from frugal living to wedding favor ideas to recipes and more. A complete mish mash of ideas, and because everyone in the marketing world says you have to find your niche, I didn’t really know what to do with all this content that wouldn’t fit under one niche.
But these posts used to make me money on the old site that they were on, so I figured, hey, why not post them on my own blog and see if they make money again? So – against all the so-called “rules” of online business – I INTENTIONALLY started a new blog that was niche-less by design. I knew I was never going to cure my shiny object syndrome and desire to start a new business every few months unless I had an outlet for EVERY one of my random business and blogging ideas. This ranged from frugal living to personal development to minimalism and decluttering, recipes, fun and quirky products, weddings, home decor, organization, blogging, and more. Yep, there’s a lot of different topics. 🙂
So that’s what I did. A couple months ago I started a blog called Tuxedo Cats and Coffee with no restrictions on what I could post about on there – although you could call it a “lifestyle blog” – and I started adding the old blog posts I had sitting around on my computer. Although my original intention with the site wasn’t to make money but to keep myself more focused on my main two businesses and not get off on tangents, it’s actually starting to get quite a few page views and make some money. And now my main two businesses – Katie Harp Creative and Resilient – can be more focused and not veer off into random topics.
Tuxedo Cats and Coffee is leaning more toward being a frugal living blog right now, but that’s mostly because I wanted to join specific Pinterest group boards and build up traction before moving onto the next niche. But I do still write about many different topics on this blog (and have decided that I won’t limit the topics I can cover), and ever since starting it, I haven’t had a single inkling of starting a new business or side project. As a result, ALL my businesses are growing each month and I’m much closer to my goals for this year than I was before I started the “dumping ground” blog.
My shiny object syndrome is finally gone. 😃
If you’d like to read more about the mindset and mental side of being an entrepreneur, check out our ebook Encouragement for Entrepreneurs.