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Struggling With A Dying Business? It Can Be Saved With This One Mindset

And it's not the faint-hearted, either.

By Ellen "Jelly" McRaePublished 3 months ago 8 min read
Image created on Canva

It seems to be every time I catch my breath, I learn of another business biting the dust.

I hate hearing it. It breaks my heart to see people who've given their heart, soul, and life savings to this business have it vanish.

I've been there. I knew it was time when the beginning of the pandemic completely evaporated my website design business. I knew I wasn't lasting.

But despite the chaos in the world, it didn't stop me from trying to revive my business. I needed it. The business needed me. And despite all the circumstances working against me, I refused to let go.

When you have your business back up against the wall, when it would seem the writing is on the wall, you can give up.

But if you don't want to, if it's not an option for you, adopt the SOS mindset.

It will do more than save you, it will revive you. Let me show you the power of this mindset.

What is the SOS mindset in business?

We all understand the SOS mindset when your life is literally hanging in the balance. Save our soul has a literal meaning; save me.

And what happens when people are trying to save you? They do everything in their human power to rescue you, stop you from death, and pull you back into normal life.

The SOS mindset is exactly the same for your business. 

Instead of doing everything to save your life, you exercise desperate urgency to save your business.

You could say it's channeling your fight-or-flight response.

And no, it's not healthy to stay in this mode long-term. But this is about using it in a concentrated time to pull you out of closure. Short-term pain for long-term gain.

How do you adopt the SOS mindset?

1. Understand it's time to switch

Before you start making practical applications of the SOS mindset, acknowledge this is happening.

You no longer work the same. You're changing how you approach the business. You're shifting your daily tasks and focus away from business as usual.

Declaring such a change makes it real. And when it's real, you're more likely to stick with the uncomfortable changes to your behaviour you need to implement.

It's kind of like going on a diet; the more you embrace it's happening, the better is it to stick to it.

2. Understand this mindset comes with action

The SOS mindset is going to affect what you do day to day.

When you change your way of thinking about your business into saving mode, you will find yourself having to change your daily processes. It will mean changes to your routine and how you complete basic tasks.

When you apply the SOS mindset, you will find yourself doing some, many, or all the following behavioural changes:

  • Spending more money on the business than you once did
  • Change what you offer in your business, from products to services
  • Complete rebranding of the business or overhauling your public profile
  • Complete change of marketing approaches or going extreme on marketing avenues
  • Working long, unsustainable hours to make changes
  • Sacrificing your entire personal life to fulfill extreme working hours

These are some ideas. Only you're going to know which changes you're going to be able to make.

Yet, the SOS mindset is about pushing to the extremes to change your business.

You aren't going to do that by doing the same things that got you into this mess.

But remember, no matter what actions you decide to take:

  • This is a short-term push - You can't survive in SOS mode forever. This approach gets you back on your feet and pulls you back from the brink. It's not a new way of working.
  • This is going to suck - You're going to work harder than ever before. You're trying to save something important to you. As if it's not going to take all your emotional and physical energy. This will be hard but again, it won't be forever.
  • This is going to feel unusual - The change is going to feel weird. Embrace the weird because it's what you need to do to save your business. Get comfortable feeling uncomfortable.

3. Work out what changes you're going to make

This mindset might help you save your business as a whole. But you can't do everything on this list, or all at once.

Your business might not need you to work longer hours. But it might need you to sacrifice some or your entire personal life during the week, for example.

Pick the changes to your behaviour that are going to give you the best opportunity of saving your business. 

These might be the most uncomfortable, by the way.

What the SOS mindset will do for your business

SOS will help you work out whether your business is sick or dead

Most people will label their business incorrectly at some point during their business ownership.

This can happen due to many different reasons. Yet we're good at saying something is doing well when it isn't. Or assuming everything is in the toilet when it's far from it.

You could say the health of your "dying" business isn't so cut and dry.

When you use the SOS mindset within your business, you'll quickly discover what shape your business is actually in.

This mindset helps you get your head out of the sand. You start seeing your business for what it is. You will see the opportunities better and know if something is salvageable or not.

And with clarity, it might not be as bad as you think.

Test ideas you've been too afraid to test

Now is the time to throw spaghetti at the wall and see what sticks.

We've all had those crazy ideas, ones we've been dying to pursue in fear of ruining what we have. Well, the business isn't going well, so you can't make it that worse, can you?

Embrace the idea that you can try out crazy ideas; go as wild as you like.

If there's going to be a time to push what you can do, now would be the time. And it could be one of those unusual ideas that save your business, too.

You might learn something about what you did wrong

When I first applied the SOS mindset to my business, I had my head in the sand. I didn't know why I was in this situation I was in. I was very much blaming the pandemic when in fairness that was the straw that broke the camel's back.

When it happened to me, I could see exactly what was going wrong. It smacked me in the face, which left me embarrassed. I couldn't believe I hadn't noticed it earlier.

Yet, my faults weren't my only discovery. I undercovered what was going really well, what was making me money, and therefore what to double down on.

The SOS mindset can feel like you've experienced a strange rebirth.

The clarity from this mindset was profound. And probably the best part of the whole process.

I regret not channeling the mindset earlier.

You might actually save your business

And desperation is a wonderful thing. I don't like saying that because we're conditioned not to embrace desperation. But healthy pressure is good for you.

The people who thrive off pressure will attest to this. Sometimes you need to feel some sort of threat to get you moving.

We always try to mitigate the perfect type of motivation. Many experts will tell you not to feel motivated by fear. 

But in this scenario when you're facing the end, any motivation or mindset to change things is worth exploring. You have no other option.

And hey, you might actually save your business. That's the goal, right? Considering how much you're changing and putting into saving your business, that could happen.

I can never guarantee it 100%. Yet, considering the changes you're willing to undertake, you're more likely than ever before to succeed.

Get off your rear end

You could call this SOS mindset a gimmick. Sure, it is. But in my mind, it's a nice way of telling yourself to get off your bottom and do something.

Because you're going to lose it all if you don't something about it right now.

This is your hard or go-home moment. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

But you actually have to change your mindset and apply yourself if you stand any chance of this working. You have to do the work to get the results.

I know you think you've done the work, too. You don't get to where you are now without doing the work. But I'm sorry, you're going to have to do more. There's no stopping now if you want the results.

I'm clearly an advocate for the SOS mindset. I managed to save my design business and onsell it to someone else. My passion for it comes from my despise of regret.

I couldn't walk away until I knew I had done everything in my power to make the most of this situation.

Some might say we're prolonging the inevitable, and that is true for some.

But how do you know if you don't try it?


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About the Creator

Ellen "Jelly" McRae

Writes about romanceships (romance + relationships) | Loves to talk about behind the scenes of being a solopreneur on The Frolics | Writes 1 Lovelock Drive | Discover everything I do and share here:

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  • suman mohan3 months ago

    Good work!

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