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Next time you earnestly pursue a project, yet still “fail” to get the hoped-for results, remember this: There is no failure, only redirection.

Even the lack of feedback is feedback. You’re getting the instruction from Life to try something else.

You are being redirected to another idea, another method, another experiment.

A higher purpose than “getting results” is your own learning, your inner growth in patience, lightheartedness, and courage.

Someone who “failed” many times was Thomas Edison:

“I speak without exaggeration when I say that I have constructed 3,000 different theories in connection with the electric light, each one of…

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The most common financial goal for solopreneurs? To make “6 figures”.

(And if they achieve that, they now have to make “7 figures” because you can never make enough, right?)

How do you relate to goals?

Do you set ones that are effective — and mentally healthy — for you?

While there is some science that having “big hairy audacious goals” can inspire and motivate organizations of people, I wonder if it actually helps you, the self-employed person, to take consistent action. Do the BHAGs help you work on strategic tasks with joyful productivity every day?

Many of us have…

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One of the secrets to a joyfully productive life:

Learn to become sensitive — often — to your state of being, throughout the day.

And if you catch yourself in a less-than-optimal state, do your energy reboot practice, right away, to re-enter a good state.

A simple way to gauge your state of being is to ask:

“Right now, am I in green, yellow, or red?”

Green = feeling deeply peaceful or happy. When I’m working, Green means being in flow, confident, skillful, curious. When I’m resting, Green has me feeling nourished.

Red = feeling exhausted and negative, easily giving…

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The Tapering Strategy for Getting Clients

One of the inner blocks for self-employed people is charging money — or charging enough — for a service that they love providing.

One of the outer blocks is, of course, not having enough clients!

In this post, I’ll share a method that can help resolve both issues…

I call it the “tapering strategy” because you’ll be starting with a price that you’re very comfortable asking for (even if it’s zero) and gradually tapering up the price, and then tapering down the availability of your low-fee services.

The Basic Plan

First, determine how many client sessions per week you can happily sustain. Assuming…

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Hint: Focus more on the process than the outcome

Millions of people have tried the “Law Of Attraction” (popularized by “The Secret”) … and no matter how hard they try, they don’t manifest those millions of dollars they envisioned.

If they go into debt to buy that fancy house or car, they usually regret the debt. Or that so-called “perfect” relationship they visualized, doesn’t end up working out.

Visualization is ineffective — even detrimental — when used only to imagine the ideal outcome.

Instead, what if we use visualization to strengthen the process of our actions towards the desired outcome?

If we can manifest a joyful way of working

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What are the most productive actions in your business?

​Checking off more items on your to-do list? Working longer hours? Getting another certification? Trying to make your website better?

Many such actions feel productive but don’t actually build your business. Besides having a “to do” list, you may want to define a TO-DROP list as well.

Otherwise you might be doing busy work that feels like movement, but isn’t really helping you grow your client base or make more impact.

Here is how I define “true productivity” in business:

Valuable interaction with the people your business can best serve.

It’s being in touch with your market, rather than being…

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One up of the hangups a lot of us have — especially if we care about accuracy or fear being judged — is to not post content because we haven’t yet done enough research.

This is a trap, because for any topic, there will always be more research to do. It’s endless.

How then do we create content consistently, while respecting the need to do research?

My main recommendation for you is to be clear about separating your content production time from your research time.

Content production is the time you spend actually writing or recording.

Research is the time you spend on reading, searching, and taking notes.

If you combine these two modes…

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“On a daily basis, I go from task to task, event to event, responding to the world’s demands, reacting to urgencies, emails, and deadlines. I don’t have any ‘thinking time’… to reflect, to reconnect to my deeper purpose & motivation.” — a reader wrote.

If that describes you, then this post is for you…

Schedule Self-Care First

When I schedule my calendar, self-care comes first:

  • Several times in each workday, I take a 60–90 minute break, which can include a snack, dog walk, and always, a 15–20 minute nap. These breaks allow me to mentally process how I’ve spent my day thus far…

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(Especially if one of them is an influencer)

You’re a connector and love introducing people to each other. It can be a wonderful (sometimes career-changing) effect when it’s the right match!

Yet, when it’s the wrong match — unfortunately much of the time — by being the connector, you just added a burden to them. Now they’re in an awkward position you’ve forced them into, where one person, if they don’t want to connect, will come across as unfriendly or unapproachable.

Still, the benefits are big enough that it’s worth learning to do this well. You can make deep positive lasting impressions for many people.

Before you make…

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I’m about to launch a podcast. My audience suggested the playful name of “Business Tao with George Kao”. (Update: it’s launched!)

Some were concerned that the podcast name might be cultural/religious appropriation. (Nevermind that I’m Chinese, and can pronounce Tao te Ching more accurately than most Western Taoist scholars, and that Taoism is characteristically unattached from definitions and who gets credit for what…)

Still, the question inspired me to dive back into studying Taoist philosophical principles. In this post, I’ll briefly share how a few such principles might apply to Authentic Business.


A core principle of Taoism is to live…

George Kao

Authentic Business Coach & Author of 4 Books including "Authentic Content Marketing" and "Joyful Productivity"

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