Financial planning is really important, but it shouldn't be done from a fixed point of view, says entrepreneur Simone Milasas.
“You need to have the awareness of your financial reality,” she says. “It’s not about limiting and budgeting. Most financial planners will look at your profit and loss statements and talk about cutting down your expenses. It’s not about cutting down your expenses, it’s about asking what else you can create.”
Milasas, who started Joy of Business after a conversation with Gary Douglas, the founder of Access Consciousness, says if finances are not planned well, an entrepreneur can lose money, business, reputation and sleep.
“You can lose absolutely everything. If you’re not being aware of it, you’ve already lost.
“I’ve seen it happen over and over again with friends and even myself,” says Milasas.
“I wasn’t willing to be aware of my monetary status when I was $187,000 in debt. That’s when you lose. If you’re willing to be aware of it, you can change it.”
Here are five pieces of financial advice for the year from Milasas.
Questions are invaluable, she says. “The second you go to conclusion, rather than questioning, you create limitations.
“For example, Access is purchasing a piece of land in Costa Rica to build a resort. We started asking how many different ways we could use that piece of land to create multiple revenue streams. How many revenue streams do you have available that you’re not willing to look at?”
Rather than being afraid of failure, start learning how to choose.
Know what you desire to create with your business and life
“If you want to be a leader and make it happen, then you will take that path,” she says. “Be unstoppable, because it’s not always an easy road.
Milasas says when she first became worldwide coordinator of Access Consciousness, the judgement of others was one of things that stopped her.
“Eventually I realised judgements don’t mean anything. Most of the people don’t even know me. Or they’ve had a small conversation and come to a whole world of conclusions.
“So, what is it for you? What keeps you from being the phenomenal force of unstoppable in your business and your life?”
You have to make choices
“Choice creates awareness. Rather than being afraid of failure, start learning how to choose,” says Milasas. “Try the 10-second increment choice. The more choices you make, the more awareness you gain.”
She cites her own example. “Years ago I had been driving an old Toyota Tarago van and then I chose to drive a BMW convertible. That car matched the lifestyle that I was actually asking for. I started creating more and within a couple of years I had paid off the car in full.”
Don’t wait for anyone or anything
“Don’t wait for a budget or anything else. Ask, what is the worst thing that can happen? You lose money? Start again,” Milasas says.
“In business you need to be willing to take a chance. You don’t wait for anyone to give you a pat you on the back.” Many of the great scientists and inventors kept going on despite being ridiculed, she says.
“If you have an innovative, original idea, be willing to get off your butt and actually do something. Be the catalyst for growth and change and success. What if that’s what the planet requires of you?”
Ask yourself, what if business was the adventure of living – are you living it?
“My attitude has always been, ‘If it’s not joyful, why would you do it?’,” she says.
“I don’t do anything because I have to. What are three different choices you could make today that would add more to your life and business?”
Christine D'Mello is a freelance journalist who writes for The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age.