One of my biggest struggles as a business owner has been overcoming shiny object syndrome. Shiny object syndrome is when you think you should be doing something because everyone else in your space seems to be doing it.
Here’s how shiny object syndrome manifests in your business:
- Your attention and focus is split among too many different projects at the same time (ex. creating classes, creating packages, client work, etc.)
- You find yourself testing and tweaking a bunch of tech tools that don’t need to be tested and tweaked.
- You’re taking every marketing class you can find at the exact same time.
- You have a bunch of unfinished projects sitting on your desktop.
- Nothing is ever launched.
Shiny object syndrome leads to a lack of productivity and a lack of strategy. Because, at the end of the day, it’s directing and focusing our attention and energy that leads to money. Here are some ways to mitigate shiny object syndrome in your business.
Focus on the path of least resistance.
I often tell students and clients to focus on the path of least resistance. This means they need to mindfully choose the things that cause the least amount of stress. If you’re suffering from shiny object syndrome, you’re likely stressed all the time because you are constantly stimulated.
The main way I tend to focus on the path of least resistance is to only focus on what will make me money. I understand that’s not a big motivator for everyone, but at the end of the day, food costs money. Living also costs money.
Find a mentor to keep you in check.
I often say the story of how one of my mentors checked me for having shiny object syndrome. She called me out for not being able to focus on launching one thing. She also called me out for having written up 70 modules for a course. Yes, seventy.
If you identify as a creative it’s easy to fall prey to shiny object syndrome because our brains create stuff so easily. Sometimes we need mentors to tell us when we’ve gone off the deep end with our own creativity.
I do this for my own students as well. I recently told a student she needs to get rid of all her side hustles so she can just focus on her business. I told another one to ruthlessly start saying no to projects that take away her time and energy.
Question whether or not you really need something
I’ve taken a ton of courses over the years. Heck, I even offer courses myself for people want to learn how to run an online business. However, I’m the first to tell you that at some point you need to put yourself on a course hiatus and focus on implementing what you’ve learned. It’s one thing to intellectualize, it’s another thing to take action.
Once you do that, then it’s a matter of questioning whether or not you really need something the next time shiny object syndrome rears its head. Ask yourself, do I really need to purchase a15th course this year?
Shiny object syndrome as an entrepreneur sucks your energy and stresses you out. It’s also probably one of the reasons you aren’t seeing as much money as you’d like. Learn to mitigate it so it doesn’t negatively affect you.