Tag Archives: Core values

What choices are you making with your business?

road-sign-464640_1280Why are you running your business?

Entrepreneurs will give many different answers to this question:

  • “I want to make more, and more, and MORE MONEY Mwahahahaha!”
  • “I want to make a difference in the world”
  • “I want to see my ideas come to life”
  • “I want to employ other people and help them make a living”
  • “I want to see if I can do it better”
  • “I want to support my family”
  • “I am tired of working for someone else”

All of these “become an entrepreneur” reason can be summarized with one overall answer (one answer to bring them all, and in the darkness bind them):

You are running your own business because you want to be able to make CHOICES

You want to choose:

  • if you provide a service, build something, help someone, or create art.
  • how you make your money and what you do with your money
  • when you work and for how long
  • to live outside the cookie-cutter existence that makes you feel sick to your stomach

You want to make and be in control of your own choices

Some of the Choices I make with my business

For me, I run my business so that my wife and I can make the choice that our son doesn’t have to go to before and after school care. I drop him off and pick him up.

We choose to put money into multiple vacations even though some of that money should definitely be going to our retirement.

I choose to work with the clients I love not the ones who pay me the most money (but give me the most grief).

I get to choose when to pivot and change what I do completely without having to look for a new job.

I get to (with my wife and son) choose to live the life that we all dream of.

What are your Choices?

Most people will tell you that they choose the entrepreneurial lifestyle to have freedom. Many people misinterpret this freedom as the ability to sit on a beach and relax, or stop working at 2pm every day, or travel the world. These are all great forms of freedom, but they aren’t necessarily yours.

Entrepreneurial freedom is the freedom to be more in control of your choices.

You can choose to go on that beach vacation. Or, you can choose to work 80 hours per week to grow something bigger and more amazing than what you have now. You can choose to travel the world and work from a suitcase, or to fit an entire business into five hours per day while the kids are at school. The freedom of owning your own business comes from the choices you get to make that other people don’t, and that is amazing.

Why do you choose to be an entrepreneur? What does your freedom look like?

Resisting the spending urge – use the Four Purchasing R’s

nobl wheelsI was sitting on a stool in my local bike shop, waiting for a work order for tune ups to my wife’s and son’s bikes, when the conversation started:

“What would you recommend for a new wheelset for mountain bike?”

The mechanic’s eyes lit up as he started to talk about the latest carbon wheel rim from Nobl, and the dependability and “bling” factor of Chris King hubs. Soon a second mechanic had joined the conversation and I had one of the carbon rims in my hands, and we were discussing only using top end spokes for a wheel build like this.

In moments, my innocent question had resulted in a super cool new wheelset worth $2500 Canadian.

Understand, I WANT these wheels. I love my bike. I love new gear for my bike. I especially love new carbon gear for my bike. This hand-built carbon wheelset would be perfect.

But I didn’t do it. I didn’t order the wheels. I walked away (for now, I have some money building up in my Choice Account).

Walking away

Walking away from purchases, both big and small, can be a difficult task, especially in today’s world of credit cards and making payments. Just five or six years ago I probably would have just made that purchase and worried about the consequences later because, well, because I really want to own those wheels.

I am guessing you probably have been in similar situations, both in Life and in your business, and sometimes you have made that purchase and then regretted it afterwards, promising yourself that you wouldn’t make the same mistake again (and then, later, made a similar purchase).

How can you (and me, and my wife, and my son) stop making purchases on the spot? Purchases that lead to guilt, stress, and panic?

Use the “Four Purchasing R’s”

This is how I avoid making these types of purchases now:

1. Refuse to buy something in the moment: Always go into a store, or on a shopping trip, or read a sales page with a clear decision of whether or not you plan to purchase. If you end up in a situation where an opportunity to buy something pops up, stick to window shopping, walk away, and take some time to make a proper decision on whether or not you need the item.

2. Remember, and use, your core value statement: When buying something, it should be supporting either your Life or Business Core Value Statement (depending on the situation). If it does not support your Core Value Statement then be honest with yourself: why do you feel you need it? Is this purchase going to resonate with you and your values in a few hours or days?

3. Review your current money goals: Sit down and review what your current money plan is. What do you need your money to be doing for you right now? Does this purchase support your current money goals? If not, why are you making the purchase?

4. Repeat the process at least once: After following the first three Purchasing R’s, if you feel like the purchase makes sense, and you can afford it, then…

Wait a few more days and start at the first “R” one more time.

What I have found is, when I use the “Four Purchasing R’s” one of three things will happen:

1. I will realize I don’t need whatever it is I am desiring to buy, and I forget about it.
2. I decide to delay my decision over and over again before finally deciding one way or the other (usually I decide not to buy)
3. I make the purchase and feel good about it because I have made an informed choice about spending the money.

The “Four Purchasing R’s” versus the Carbon Wheelset

If I run the opportunity to buy expensive wheels for my bike through these filters it looks like this:

1. Refuse: The wheels sounded cool, and I desired them, so I got up off the stool and left the store, wallet intact.

2. Remember: My Core Value Statement is “Provide the Security my Family needs to have amazing Adventures together”. Carbon wheels would assist with having amazing biking adventures with my family, but they are not necessary. In this case my Core Value Statement didn’t give me a clear “yes” or “no” answer.

3. Review: My family and business are currently both debt free except for our mortgage. However, we are within five years of paying off our mortgage, 3 years if we start putting extra money on it, which is one of our current money goals. $2500 would take a nice chunk out of that mortgage and towards our money goal.

4. Repeat: I haven’t ended at a solid “no” about the wheels yet, there may be ways, using my Choice Account, to accomplish getting the wheels and paying off our mortgage. For now I am in a cycle of repeating this process every time I walk by the bike store, or consider buying the wheels. Until I get a strong “yes” with all four R’s (and discuss with my wife and son) I won’t be buying the wheels.

If you decide to give the Four Purchasing R’s a try, I would love to hear how it works for you in the comments below.

How can I create a realistic budget? Part One – Unrealistic Budgets

Resistance to creating a budget and then following that budget is one of the biggest money blocks people experience, bringing up comments like:

  • If I follow a budget there is no way I can have any fun
  • Life changes too much, there is no point in creating a budget, it will just change
  • Budgets never work, I always end up going over
  • Budgets do nothing but cause my family to fight over money
  • Following a budget makes me feel like I can’t live the life I want
  • Making a budget brings up all of the money issues I have in my life and makes me panic

These sorts of comments usually mean that budgeting is not the problem, creating an unrealistic budget is the problem.

Watch the video below and see if the budget blocks mentioned have been holding you back from creating and successfully following a budget:

Want some help creating a realistic budget that you can successfully follow? Then you can do one of THREE things:

1. Check out the next video in this series, all about creating a Core Value Budget (coming soon)

2. Sign up for the Secure Entrepreneur Ezine to get more tips, tricks, and strategies for budgeting: http://jeremiemiller.com/the-secure-entrepreneur-ezine/

3. Sign up for the Secure Entrepreneur Money Management Beta Class (just $97) starting February 16th: http://jeremiemiller.com/sebetaclass/

How you can limit poor purchasing decisions in your business

You have made them. I have made them. Some may be a bit embarrassing. Some make you shake your head. A few you might have eventually found uses for.

Eliminating bad business purchases completely probably isn’t going to happen (you are human right?) but learning a few steps to help limit these moments of bad judgement will make a huge difference. Watch the video below to get 2 mindset and 3 practical tips for helping ensure you make better money choices in your business:

Need help laughing at, and then eliminating your bad business money decisions? Then sign up for the Secure Entrepreneur Ezine here:


Know a friend who could use some similar help with money choices in their business? Share this post and let’s all avoid our next purchase mistake together!