How to Start Financially Aligning Yourself With Your Business
Guest Post by Erin Armstrong
In my last article, I asked if you were financially aligned in your business. This week, I’d like to talk about how to start financially aligning yourself through three key steps.
Step 1: Get Clear on What YOU Want From Your Business
When I ask business owners what their dream business looks like, the responses vary greatly. Some people think in terms of bringing in a certain amount of money. Others say things like “I want to travel all the time and work from my laptop” or “I want the ability to be at all my kids’ activities.” Whatever your response, I’d like you to take that vision to a more holistic and bigger-picture level.
For instance, if you want your dream business to provide you a certain lifestyle, how much would that cost? A couple of examples:
- How much money do you need to be able to travel constantly?
- How much money would it take to live in your dream house?
Assign a dollar value to each dream you have for your business. This may take some research! Once you have a total, calculate how much it would cost per year or per month to sustain your life choices.
Or, if you responded with a set dollar amount that you want from your dream business, let me ask you something: What will that dollar amount provide you? Do you really know? Think in more concrete terms:
- How would you use that money?
- How do you want to be able to live your life?
- What changes do you expect that big dollar amount to bring?
Then start researching the dollar amounts for what you actually need. This may or may not converge with the money goal you originally had in mind.
Remember to think of all this in terms of what you want to take home, so your business revenue has to be higher. If you’re good with numbers or have financial assistance, you can factor in your business’ profit margin and taxes to get an exact total revenue of what your business needs to make.
I like this exercise because when we talk money, we’re always talking about something much bigger than money. Essentially, we’re talking about what you want or are able to do in life. And this exercise gives you the full picture. Because whether you think in terms of numbers first or opportunities first, you need to consider the other side. This exercise ties the financial side of business back to your life and what matters to you. And it sets the tone for a higher energy vibration, which will radiate into your financial motivation and decisions as you move forward with your business.
Step 2: Invest in Financial Literacy
If you just groaned, I get it. But here’s the thing: Even if you have the best financial help in the world, only you, as the business owner, are in the driver’s seat of your business. You’re the one who makes the financial choices and decisions. If you haven’t taken the time to understand a few key accounting concepts — profit and loss statements, balance sheets, profit margins, some general tax concepts — business finances and money will always be a challenge.
From a purely energetic standpoint, when you nurture your understanding of business finances, your actions say things like “I see you. This is important. I’m taking care of my business. I’m taking care of myself. I’m taking care of my life. I’m in control. Money is easy. I got this.” Like attracts like. So when you nurture your finances, they start nurturing you back.
Step 3: Fully Trust That Your Business Has Your Back
This, by far, is the most challenging step of all. So often we spend a lot of time crafting the perfect offer, updating our bio, going to networking events, growing our social media following — and the list goes on. We may even spend a lot of time trying to drum up new business or crunching numbers. But at the end of the day, if you do not truly believe deep down that your business can and will sustain you, finances will always feel hard.
There’s a release that comes with believing that something will work. It frees up your energy and bumps it to a higher vibration. It gives you bandwidth to address challenges and perseverance to do what you need to do. Even if things aren’t where you’d ultimately like them to be, each day brings a new beginning, new support and new opportunities.
This mindset allows you to enter an equal partnership: one where you invest in and take care of the business and you have a business that invests in and takes care of you.
Next time: We’ll talk about the elephant in the room for many business owners: when and how much you pay yourself.
Erin Armstrong is a CFO, Business Coach, and Licensed Enrolled Agent, who’s on a mission to financially empower small business owners and female entrepreneurs. Erin’s unique approach focuses on the nuts & bolts of business finance, such as accounting practices, tax strategy, profitability, budgeting, & cash flow. Simultaneously, she helps her clients identify their financial fears and improve their money mindset so that they can move forward in a confident, proactive and empowered way. Erin has worked with hundreds of business owners across the country in dozens of industries. She has also led workshops in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, and other major US cities. Erin lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, with her husband and daughter, and their dog, Hilda. To find out more, visit www.erinarmstrong.com.