Want a Successful Business? 17 Thought-Provoking Questions to Gain Self-Knowledge

Want a Successful Business? 17 Thought-Provoking Questions to Gain Self-Knowledge

Self-KnowledgeWhat would you say is the starting point for creating a successful business?

Different people may have different answers and all of them might be correct.

In my opinion, the absolute starting point for creating business success is to truly know yourselfto know and understand who you are as a person: your personality, strengths, weaknesses, behaviors, beliefs, motivations, emotional reactions and everything else that makes you tick..

The reason why self-knowledge is so important is because it increases the likelihood that you can create the results you want in your life and your business. When operating your own business, you can read every business tip out there, you can model the practices of others, and you can eat up every piece of self-help that comes across the computer screen, but it’s completely pointless if you don’t know yourself well enough to put the correct advice into practice.

So, self-knowledge helps you to figure out what you want to do, what you will enjoy, and what you are willing to let go. It helps you make much better decisions in terms of

  • What type of business to start
  • The services you offer
  • How to perform your work
  • The type of clients you work with
  • How you interact with clients
  • How you manage your business and resources to progress faster
  • How to manage and grow your finances
  • How you market and attract clients

When you understand who you are as a person, what you are willing to do, what you want in life and why you want it, you can start creating the business success you want. Because only then, you can change behaviors that don’t suite you, and direct your thoughts, plans and actions to achieve all the things you want.

But, getting to know yourself doesn’t just happen.

It takes conscious effort and a lot of stripping back the layers, one by one.

It also takes a lot of courage. (But it’s worth it!).

So, to help you on this journey of self knowledge, here are a couple of important thought-provoking questions to ponder on.


17 Thought Provoking Questions to improve your self-knowledge

  1. How would you describe yourself?
  2. What makes you happy
  3. What motivates you?
  4. What are your top five values?
  5. What are you most grateful for in life?
  6. What you are really passionate about.
  7. What do you dislike?
  8. What makes you angry?
  9. What do you fear most in life?
  10. What limiting beliefs are you holding on to?
  11. What empowering beliefs can you take on to help you achieve your goals?
  12. What bad habits do you want to break?
  13. What good habits do you want to cultivate?
  14. What are your greatest strengths?
  15. What do you want from your business…from life in general?
  16. Why do you want it?
  17. What will you do anything for (to have or get)?

Obviously, these questions are just a starting point, but knowing the answers and delving a bit deeper to understanding yourself better, will in the end drive your overall behavior and impact on all the decisions you make regarding your business and your life.

So take some time out today, and start stripping back those layers to get to the real you.

Let’s start creating your business success, today.

To your Success


Know Yourself – 12 Important Questions to Ask

Know Yourself – 12 Important Questions to Ask


Are you like Shrek?

Funny question, I know…

…but I think humans are actually a lot like ogres.

Remember when Shrek was trying to explain to Donkey what ogres are like and had the “onions / layers” conversation with Donkey?


[Click video for dialoque]



Well, like ogres, humans are also wonderfully complex creatures…

We also have many layers and there’s a lot more to you than meets the eye.  🙂

But have you ever really think about…


How well do you know yourself and your layers? 

How well do you know:

  • Who you really are as a person?
  • What makes you happy
  • What are you truly passionate about?
  • What do you want from your business…from life in general?
  • Why do you want it?
  • What motivates you?
  • What do you dislike?
  • What makes you angry?
  • What are your values?
  • What are your biggest fears?
  • What are your greatest strengths?
  • What will you do anything for (to have or get)?

Research has consistently shown that people, who truly understand these basic things about themselves, tend to be stronger performers and better leaders in their industries.

It’s not just about knowing your strengths and weaknesses; it is also about understanding your personality and knowing what is important to you because that knowledge drives your behavior and the decisions you make in life AND your business.

In business, understanding your own layers helps you make better decisions in terms of:

  • The services you offer
  • The type of clients you want to work with
  • How to interact with clients
  • How to perform your work on a daily basis
  • How to manage your business and resources to progress faster
  • How to promote your services and attract more ideal type clients

Success in life starts with clarity…

Knowing and understanding who you are, what you are willing to do, what you want in life and why you want it is often the starting point of creating a successful business…

…because only then you can direct your thoughts, plans and actions to achieve all the things you want.

To Your Success




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How to Face Your Fears

How to Face Your Fears

Face Your Fears

When you stare the bull in the eye, grab it by the horns, twist it to the ground and make it beg for mercy. What are you?

A Spanish matador?

No. You are taking control of your fear in business.

Fear is a strange thing. It can paralyze you into inaction or motivate you to take action.

The really sad thing about fear however, especially in business, is that it often prevents you from reaching your full potential. Fear is keeping you small. Fear is keeping you stuck and fear is keeping you from experiencing the abundance that life has to offer.

Some time ago, I asked myself the question: “Am I successful – in my business that is?”

I had to admit that I did reach a level of success, but I’m not where I truly want to be – not even close.”

So the next question I asked is: “What keeps me from being truly successful?”

It took me a while to come up with the right answer, but eventually I realized that I was holding myself back.

I have all these silly fears and self-limiting beliefs that keep a lid on my growth – personally and professionally. Does this scenario sound familiar to you?

The thing is: fear can manifest in many ways.

Well, maybe I’m afraid of failure – that when I start something I would not succeed. Maybe I’m not good enough; or don’t know enough; or it’s too difficult to pull off. So I procrastinate and don’t take action on things I want to do.

Maybe I’m afraid of rejection. Perhaps I’m not “one of those people” who get everything they go after. Perhaps people will think I’m crazy or too ambitious; perhaps people will say “no” to what I have to offer. So I procrastinate and don’t take action on things I want to do.

Maybe I’m afraid of success. Perhaps if I do reach the success I want, it will change my life and I don’t really want that change. I’m happy and content with where I am. I’m in a comfortable spot right now. So I procrastinate and don’t take action on doing the things that need to be done.

The truth is, there are so many unnecessary fears that we put in our own paths each day and it is time that we put a stop to it!


Adopt the “So What – What If” approach.

What if you take control of fear in business
This approach can help you get clarity on a lot of fears that are standing in your way and help you put them into perspective – so that it’s easier to take action on the things you fear most.

It works as follows: Each time you find yourself procrastinating on doing something, it is often due to one or the other “fear”. When you can recognize the fear that is preventing you from taking action, put on your “over-confident” attitude and ask yourself “so what”. Then turn the fear into a positive with asking “what if”.

For example, if you find yourself hating to go to networking events, try to find out what you are afraid of? Perhaps you are shy or not feeling confident enough. Perhaps you fear you’ll be left standing in the corner; fear you won’t know what to say; fear “whatever” .

When you identify the fear that is holding you back, ask yourself: So what.

So what if the networking event doesn’t go as planned? So what, if you stand the whole time alone in the corner? So what if your words are all scrambled? What is the worst possible thing that can happen if the thing you fear is actually becoming a reality? Will it physically hurt you? Will you die?

Then turn it into something positive by asking yourself: What if.

What if you actually do not stand in the corner and have great conversations with other people? What if you perhaps get to know some new, interesting people? What if you meet someone you can collaborate with in future or even meet an ideal client? What if the networking event turns out to be fantastic? What are all the positive things that can come from doing the thing you fear?

With this approach, the benefits of doing something almost always outshine the negatives.

Asking “so what” makes the fear seem small and irrelevant in comparison to the benefits and gains from the “what if” and it’ll give you the motivation and confidence to take action in spite of the fear.

The bottom line is: Fear essentially comes down to a choice…

You can choose to fear something and let it keep you from stepping up in a big way. Or you can choose to take action to overcome the fear. It is ultimately a choice that only you can make…

This is my approach to combat fear. What do you do to face your fears? Share it with us on the blog / comments below.

To Your Success





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You Are Not Alone… How To Get From Where You Are To Where You Want To Be

You Are Not Alone… How To Get From Where You Are To Where You Want To Be


helping handHow often do you put yourself in a situation where you are stimulated mentally, challenged and encouraged to step it up in your business physically, and inspired emotionally to do things beyond your wildest dreams?

If I can be honest, it didn’t happen too often in my entrepreneurial life – until I found an opportunity that quickly lifted me up and moved me into higher gear.

I think I can speak for a number of solo entrepreneurs when I say that: when you start your business, you expect it would take a lot of hard work to get it up and running successfully. But what you don’t expect is that in the process you become lonely and even start to feel distant from your family, your friends and even your social life. The reason for this is that even though everyone you know might be supportive, it is difficult to talk to them about your business, simply because they do not fully understand exactly what you do.  You then start to crave conversations with people who are on the same path as you – someone who understands your situation, the decisions that you have to make and the pressure you are under – just someone with whom you are able to talk about your business issues.

For me that “someone” came in the form of joining other like-minded entrepreneurs in a mastermind group. Apart from getting the mental stimulation and an influx of fresh, new ideas when talking to others about your business, you are also motivated and inspired to take action on those ideas. That creates growth in your business and takes you from where you are now, to where you want to be.

Here are three ways a mastermind group helped me to grow so much faster.


Harness the Power of “Access”

Over the course of my business, I realized that having access to the things you need to grow, is what changes your life and current business position. This includes having access to the right tools, roadmaps and shortcuts so you do not have to re-invent the wheel and spend endless time, effort and energy figuring things out on your own. Also, having access to a group of like-minded individuals for on-going support, encouragement and sharing best practices, is just priceless.

When I joined my first group, I thought I had quite an extended knowledge on running an online business in general. But it just blew my mind to hear about the innovative ideas from the other members as well. I was able to learn so much from the successes and mistakes of others. I received excellent advice on my own business challenges, and vice versa I felt that I was able to contribute to the group with my own experiences. Overall it was a huge confidence booster.

Masterminding gave me access to the combined thinking-power of a number of other individuals to receive the tools, shortcuts and support I need to progress faster in my business.


Start Thinking Bigger

big_thinkingTo really achieve more in your business, you sometimes just have to get out of your own head, and your own way.

We limit ourselves with pitiful excuses why we cannot do something: “I’m not good enough. I’m not in business long enough. I don’t know enough. I can’t speak English well enough”. As well as fears of: “What will people think and say when I start doing xyz! I’ll deplete my finances when I do abc.” Etc. etc…

What I however found is that when you surround yourself with people in a mastermind group who are on the same journey as you, you suddenly realize that all those fears and excuses are just keeping you small, and that in fact:  Anything is possible. So you allow yourself to start thinking bigger.

You experience first-hand how other people have already done what you wanted to do – and they are not smarter, more knowledgeable or better than you. They just bit the bullet and did it! This is so motivating, because then you know you can do it too! That realization is not only empowering, but it also provides the inspiration to step up and take big leaps to grow your business faster.


 Be Accountable To Someone.

Accountability is something that we all could use more of in our businesses and our lives, right? As a solo-preneur it is easy to procrastinate and let things slide a little while longer, because there is no one who keeps you accountable to implement.  Sure, you could set goals and then try to keep yourselves on track. But the moment you know that someone else also knows about your plans and will keep you on top of it, you experience a whole new level of motivation and desire to accomplish things.

This new level of accountability is a natural progression of being part of a mastermind group. Subconsciously, nobody want to be the person who don’t make progress or who has to inform the group that you didn’t take action on what you’ve said you wanted to do. So as a result, you take more action, get the solutions and implement things faster. And in the end, you are astonished about what you’ve actually achieved over a short period of time.


So, whether you are starting out or own a well-established business, surrounding yourself with a group of advancing entrepreneurs offers an incredible opportunity to grow your business faster. In my own business it proved to be absolutely priceless. Both for my personal and professional growth.

It can do the same for you..


To your Success






P.S. If you have experienced the power of masterminding in your business already, please share with us in the comments below what you got out of it.

And by the way, if you feel masterminding is right for you at this stage and you want a mental, physical and emotional injection in your business,  have a look at the brand new Client Chemistry Mastermind Program starting on September 17th, 2013. It is a carefully designed mastermind / coaching program to help you go from where you are now, to where you want to be. Click here for more details.



The Power of Association – Who Do You Hang Out With?

The Power of Association – Who Do You Hang Out With?

Power_AssociationDid you know there is power in association and that the people who you regularly hang out with have a huge influence on your attitude, your determination, your beliefs, your inspiration and the outcome of your success? They impact on how you think about things, how you act on things and on the decisions you make on a daily basis.

It’s true, and that’s why hanging out with the right people is important!

Jim Rohn said it best. He described the power of association in one sentence as:

“You’re the average of the five people you hang out with most”.

For solo-entrepreneurs, this can be a scary thing to comprehend, because in reality, who are the people we spend the majority of our time with?

  • Perhaps a spouse or other family members who do not really, fully understand what we do and what we try to achieve with our business?
  • Perhaps friends who have no real clue of the challenges of entrepreneurship and are subconsciously trying to convince us that having an online business is a complete waste of time?
  • Perhaps moms at our kids’ after-school activities?
  • Ourselves – alone at home doing our thing?

This is not a great list of powerful associations, right?


To raise the quality of your life and business, hang out with people who already are where you want to be.Click here to tweet

And the scary thing about it is that if we take Jim Rohn’s quote literally, it means that everything about you and your business will average out to be similar to those five people whom you are currently spending most of your time with!

So, is there room for improvement on your list of the top 5 people you hang out with most?

If I just look at my own life and business, then there will always be room for some improvement!

SO….to raise the quality of your life and your business, hang out with people who can inspire and motivate you! People who have been there and done that – who reached the place where you want to be.  For example, if you want to become a better communicator, hang out with great communicators.  If you want to be more positive, hang around with more positive and optimistic people. If you want to be a terrific entrepreneur, have a thriving business and make lots of money, spend time in the company of people who have mastered the art of entrepreneurship and are already killing it online.

This is why there is so much truth in the saying “birds of a feather flock together”. Just take for example a flock of birds migrating over continents during changing seasons. If one bird attempts that long distance migration on his own, he won’t make it. If he tries to join just any flock of birds flying by, he might not end up where he wants to be. It is only when he joins his own kind; birds heading into the direction he wants to go into, that he will eventually reach his end destination.

It’s the same with people. When you want to advance in your business, it is worthwhile to think about the power of association. Surround yourself with “people like you”. Key people who are either on the same path as you, or more successful than you.

So, here’s what I hope you take from this article: Hanging out and surrounding yourself with the right people is priceless and you can use this power of association to grow your business. Thus who you associate with is too important to be left to chance.  Unfortunately, many solo-entrepreneurs never put it to work for themselves, because often their choice of who they hang out with is primarily driven by convenience or circumstances. But ultimately, you are in control and solely responsible for choosing who you associate with and who you spend your time with.

As a take-away assignment: look around and see who in your industry you want to spend more time with (online and offline). Who can you learn from? Whose business do you want to model your own business after? Then go out actively and start spending more time with them, learn from them and start working with them…

You Your Success!




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Masterminds: A Sure Way to Grow Your Business Fast

Masterminds: A Sure Way to Grow Your Business Fast

GrowFasterI believe one of the most productive ways to grow your business fast is through joining a mastermind group.

Although most people are familiar with things like coaching or even group coaching, masterminding and being part of a mastermind group is still a fairly new concept to many.


So What is Masterminding / A Mastermind Group?

The idea of masterminding has been around for over 100 years but I first learned about the mastermind concept a couple of years ago through reading Napoleon Hill’s book Think and Grow Rich.

At its core, a mastermind group consists of anything between 2-50 individuals (but typically around 8-10 people) who meet on a regular basis.  The group then combines the collective knowledge and experience of all these individuals with the core purpose to help each other succeed.

It is a place where you can surround yourself with people who you can learn from and who can help you build your business (and vice versa). Within these groups you can openly share obstacles and challenges in your business and then receive answers, feedback, support and encouragement from all the other members to help you move past these obstacles and challenges. It is also a perfect place to share and celebrate your successes – something that many solo-preneurs lack in their business – we often do not have people who understand and celebrate our business successes with us.


How Does a Mastermind Group Work?

The members of a mastermind meet regularly. This can be weekly, monthly, quarterly or yearly, depending on the group structure and needs. These meeting can be over the telephone or in-person.

A mastermind group can consist of only peers meeting regularly (typically free) or the group can have a leader who provides more structure and guidance (typically paid). Both types of groups are beneficial.

In my experience however, groups that offer the most benefit are paid groups since they have a leader / coach who can provide deeper training that is applicable to everyone in the group. Paid groups also have a clear advantage in that the members tend to participate much more in order to benefit from their investment.


How Can Masterminding Grow Your Business Faster?

Masterminding helps to spark new ideas on how to grow your business faster. This business growth usually happens when you hear yourself “think out loud” by sharing about what you do and growth also happens by listening to others where they either show you the way or just share about what happens in their own businesses.

Therefore, participating in a mastermind often gives you immediate results, because you leave each session with more wisdom, having a better perspective on your own business, feeling supported and being motivated to take bigger risks.

Your group also keeps you accountable and focused. This is something that we all could use more of in our businesses and our lives. Although it’s true that you can set your own goals and then try to keep yourself on track to achieve them, your commitment and desire to implement stuff is taken to a whole new level when you know someone else is also going to keep you accountable.

This added accountability is often the key to implement things faster – to not procrastinate on doing things. And we all know that when you take action on your goals and implement things, you get results. And with every result you get, you move closer to what you want to achieve in the end. So the faster you implement, the faster you grow and for me, that is one of the biggest benefit of a mastermind group.

Whether you are starting a new business or own a well-established business, you can benefit from the stimulating input that mastermind groups have to offer. When you surround yourself with other like-minded people who support you to reach your bigger goals, it becomes one of THE fastest ways to grow personally, and to grow your business. The saying of “two heads are better than one,” really comes into play during masterminding as it becomes easier to find solutions to overcoming the obstacles keeping your business from moving forward.


So, tell us in the comment box below what your thoughts are about mastermind groups. Have you ever joined a group and how did that work for you?

To Your Success!