Entrepreneur Mindset

These 3 Simple Steps Helped Me Triple My Income in a Month

Sometimes it's the smaller, more subtle changes that can make a huge difference.
These 3 Simple Steps Helped Me Triple My Income in a Month
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Guest Writer
Founder and CEO of David Neagle
7 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

For entrepreneurs, leaders and career-oriented individuals alike, it can sometimes feel like we are stuck on a hamster wheel. We keep putting in more time, energy and money but continue to not see any results. We feel frustrated, defeated and hopeless.

Related: Entrepreneurs' Brains Are Wired Differently. Here's How to Use Yours Right.

Sometimes we make drastic changes -- like pivoting our business model or launching a new initiative -- in hopes it will generate more sales, bump up our revenue and increase our profit. And while it may work, it's sometimes the smaller, more subtle changes that can make a bigger difference. It can come down to how we're behaving, how we're thinking and what our outlook on life, other people and our situation actually is.

At 24 years old, I was a high school dropout and dock worker making $20,000 a year driving a forklift at an Illinois food import company six-and-a-half days a week. I was married, had two children and was living in a drug-infested neighborhood. I had more bills and debt than I had income coming in. I was stuck and couldn't figure how to get out.

The go-to solutions -- spend money to learn new skills, go back to school or rely on family members -- were just not options for me. It had to come from within me.

Through changing nothing other than my attitude and the behaviors that followed with it, my income went from $20,000 to $62,000 in the matter of a month. There was an opportunity to be promoted to a different position, and I never knew it; my attitude was so bad, no one spoke to me about it. But, when I shifted my mindset, someone approached me about the opportunity and tripled my income.

And now, for the past 20 years as a business coach, I have worked alongside Bob Proctor, Tony Robbins and Mark Victor Hansen and mentored thousands of entrepreneurs and aspiring business owners helping them find their true success mindset.

What I have found is the difference between finding success and not is how you approaches your work and way of life. It comes from understanding where you are now and where you want to go and making subtle shifts, always working toward your goal.

Related: 4 Simple Steps to a More Productive Mindset

To learn how I was able to triple my income in a month, and hopefully help you make a positive change, here are three steps to consider:

1. Change your attitude.

Often, people think they know the definition of attitude -- it is how we're behaving, how we're thinking and what our outlook on life, other people and our situation actually is.

But, it goes beyond that. You should constantly be asking yourself, "What exactly is an attitude, and where do I need to change mine?"

"Positive people don't just have a good day; they make it a good day. I aim for positivity by: wearing a smile at all times; looking for opportunities to see the good in the world; approaching problems in a proactive manner; phrasing my comments and conversations to reflect positive outcomes; and leading with YES! rather than no -- that is, after all, how I got my nickname Dr. Yes!" Richard Branson wrote in a blog post.

He explains that when he launched his three airlines, he didn't focus on going after his competitors and their shortcomings, but rather honed in on what customers enjoyed about flying and used those responses to create momentum around his airlines and the company's messaging: "Are you ready for the future of air travel?"

"Positive thinking is [an] incredibly powerful tool. Simply put: Positive, proactive behavior spurs positive, proactive behavior," he added.

Another big attitude adjustment I've seen with successful people is that no matter what, they love what they do. By embracing the work needed to be done, it not only makes running a business easier but also helps entrepreneurs and leaders overcome everyday challenge. Each action and decision you take should be going through the filter of whether it is productive or not productive to your goals.

Related: 11 Mindset Shifts You Need to Scale Past 7 Figures

2. Stop playing the role of the victim.

When I was working on the dock, I was always angry at other people. For some odd reason, I thought those people were responsible for where I was. I was victimizing myself. I had a lot of self-blame, but I also would blame everybody else around me. Once I decided to accept responsibility for who I was, what I was doing and what I was creating on a regular basis, things began to change.

I am definitely not an anomaly. Today, I see this exact same self-destructive behavior in other individuals. People blame others for their own circumstances, which, unfortunately, results in them not taking action. Why would they choose to take charge of their own destiny if they have the mindset that they can't control the outcome? Don't be that person.

A great example of this is Oprah Winfrey. Her upbringing was marked by poverty, abuse and loneliness. But, rather than hold onto her past experiences, she took ownership.

"If anything was going to move forward in my life, I was going to have to be responsible for making that happen," she says in one of her Life Class videos.

And as we all know, Oprah went on to be one of the greatest entrepreneurs in modern times, having hosted the long-standing The Oprah Winfrey Show, founded production company Harpo Studios and launched the OWN network, among other endeavors.

Remember: you are responsible for where you are, not other people.

Related: 10 Things Successful Entrepreneurs Never Tolerate

3. Don't settle.

After realizing that it is me, not anyone else, who has the most impact on my life, I decided to make a change at the dock.

I came in the next day and did every job to what I thought was the best of my ability. I began to see how I could do it better the next day. The next day, I would see how I could do better the next day. I kept improving and soon my efforts paid off. Someone noticed and offered me a position that paid more.

While some people call him a visionary and others an evil genius, there is no doubt in anyone's head that Steve Jobs pushed himself day in, day out to be his best. He created the iDevices we love today and was meticulous in his execution. And he did so because he loved his work.

At his 2005 Stanford commencement speech, he said, "Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it."

Doing your best and being your best every single day begins to build upon itself. You begin to create momentum. It stacks. It gains strength. Your belief becomes deeper and stronger. Your confidence in what you're doing becomes stronger.

These three subtle shifts can help build the career path you desire. Keep in mind, the same effort you use every day that is bringing you the results that you currently have, that you currently do not like and that you currently want to change, that same effort refocused and pointed in a different direction can significantly change your trajectory.

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