My Favorite Business Tools for Entrepreneurs

My Favorite Business Tools for Entrepreneurs

My Favorite Business Tools for Small Business Owners

Hi there! I’m Jen Vazquez and I I guide hyper-busy female services providers to create ONE streamlined marketing workflow that increases efficiency, produces greater returns and honors their energy through my proven Pinterest Marketing Method. Plus my agency helps hyper-busy and savvy 6-8 figure business owners hand over their Pinterest to us so we can move the needle forward and they can work in their zone of genius.

Hey there! Running a business is no walk in the park, am I right? That’s why it’s crucial to have top-notch business tools at your fingertips that allow you to work smarter, not harder. Because let’s face it, time is money and who wouldn’t want to save both?

But we know that sifting through the sea of options can be downright overwhelming and leave you feeling lost. And just because your buddy swears by a certain tool, doesn’t mean it’s the right fit for you. That’s why it’s all about finding a tool that jives with your brain, that speaks your language. So why not give a few a try and see what clicks? Trust us, the right tool can make all the difference!

So here are my favorite tools, in no particular order.  Maybe give a few of them a try.

p.s. If you would rather watch or listen, scroll to the bottom!

NOTE:  **This post contains affiliate links, meaning that if you choose to click through and make a purchase, I will receive a small commission at no cost to you.**


(FREE!) Click Here

We make it easy to share your events and calendars using our amazing.  add-to-calendar buttons, beautiful embeddable widgets, RSVP, and subscriber tools.

The most used and trusted add-to-calendar button on the internet since 2012.  You can add a beautiful add-to-calendar button to your website, give your users a simple way to save your event to their calendars, and increase attendance and make your event a success.


(PAID!) Click Here

I know you may be thinking what – why are you sharing this??!! Well, I’ve been a professional photographer since 2009 and launched my Pinterest Marketing business in 2018.  Without Aftershoot, I would never have time to run a second business.

Culling:  I’ve been using Aftershoot to cull my images for years.  I’m shocked at how accurate it is to remove any blurry or eyes closed. I do view the closed eyes in case the photos in emotional but it takes the thousands of images I shot and gives a quarter to give to my client.  You can choose more or less too!   I’ve always had a problem with culling and took hours — this works as fast as 15 minutes for 3k images!
Editing: Right now, if you are a culling client, Aftershoot is offering free editing as it’s in beta.  I used ImagenAi for 1.5 and Aftershoot is by far the winner.  My images are 90% there then I fine tune a few things.  With indoor consistant light, I rarely have to make changes!


(FREE!) Click Here

Be concise, record with a teleprompter.  Make your videos straight-to-point, read your script scrolling down the screen. Add automatic subtitles, your logo and colors.
Connect with your audience on social media, your vlog, emails or chat messages. Plus create 10x More Videos with AI. Script, Shoot, Edit, Style and Share Videos faster than ever!



(FREE!) Click Here

This simple and amazing content creation site will help you to create all kinds of images, presentations, posters, infographics, social media images and anything you can think of. There is a free version or you can pay $12.99 per month for the pro version. 


(FREE!) Click Here

Simply put, ChatGPT by OpenAi.  It is a sibling model to InstructGPT, which is trained to follow an instruction in a prompt and provide a detailed response.  I’ve been using it since it lauched in November 2022 and February I started paying $20 because its so much faster and I never have a problem getting in. 

I use it for blogs, client emails, newsletters, creating titles for blogs and Youtube video, TikTok scripts, and Instagram reels (different).  I’m telling you this is incredible.  Here’s a video on how I use it with tips and warnings to ensure you are using it correctly.  


(FREE! + Paid) Click Here

ConvertKit simplifies email marketing by combining powerful automation with an easy-to-use interface and it looks pretty also!


(PAID!) Click Here

Dropbox is a file hosting service operated by the American company Dropbox, Inc., headquartered in San Francisco, California, US that offers cloud storage, file synchronization, personal cloud, and client software. 


(Free) Click Here

Evmux has a ton of great features including multistreaming, ISO video recording, multiple guests and a dedicated green room for speakers. Whether you want live stream software for Facebook Live, YouTube Live, LinkedIn Live or Twitch – Evmux has you covered. There’s even a workaround so you can go live on TikTok too (although I haven’t used it yet).  Create professional recorded and LIVE content all from your browser!  This is what I used for Creative Marketing Summit with recorded content and live streaming at the same time.

FG Funnels

(PAID!) Click Here

Best gift I game to my business!  Every year I give my business a gift.  It’s typically at the end of the year (for tax purposes).  Two years ago it was FG Funnels.  

FG Funnels was founded by Julie Stoian and Cathy Olson in late 2020.  A little note: Julie was actually the former VP of ClickFunnels. The platform rivals ClickFunnels, and is similar to all in one platforms like BuilderAll and Kartra.  

The system helps you build high-converting sales funnels and campaigns quickly by automating tedious tasks like creating professional-looking landing pages, sending the right follow-up emails after a purchase is made, creating a landing page for lead magnets and automatically sends nurturing campaigns, or handling onboarding new course or membership members.  You can use it for forms for high ticket items like coaching or VIP days, which turns into purchasing them, and onboarding them.

Basically FG Funnels is designed to replace most of your tools like ConvertKit, Acuity and Thinkific (MONEY SAVED!). It includes features like a funnel builder, email marketing, has a membership where you can share affiliate links, it has texting.  I’m telling you this CRM is my dream come true in terms of how it works and the price tag.  Don’t wait as this baby is gonna be right up there with Kajabi soon! 


(FREE!) Click Here

Focus Keeper helps you keep your productivity high avoiding burnout using the timer. Work with time. Not against it.  You can add tasks in there and see a graph of your time.  They believe you should work 25 mins then 5 min break, repeat, repeat, repeat then a longer break.  omodoro Technique, also known as the tomato timer technique or just 25 minute timer technique refers to a popular time management hack that breaks your work time into blocks of 25 minutes for maximum focus and productivity, allowing 5 minutes breaks in between sessions.


(PAID!)  Click Here

It’s an amazing software I use on my ipad to handwrite notes and also open and read workbooks or other PDF’s.

Google Workspace

(PAID!) Click Here

Similar to G Suite, all Google Workspace plans provide a custom email for your business and include collaboration tools like Gmail, Calendar, Meet, Chat, Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides, Forms, Sites, and more. For additional details, visit our plans and pricing page.


(PAID!) Click Here

The Future Of Writing blogs, social media posts, Pinterest Titles and descriptions, youtube scripts, podcast scripts and so much more!

What is it?  Well, first and foremost it saves me so much time.  Like writing a blog post in 5 minutes!!

It is artificial intelligence that makes it fast & easy to create content.  It’s highly rated 5/5 stars in 3,000+ reviews.
It supports 25+ languages and has recipes and templates galore!  It has a Bootcamp of training videos (about 1-2 hours) and I literally wrote a blog in 5 minutes.  Yes, I had to repeat myself.  You HAVE TO TRY IT!!


(FREE! + Paid)  Click Here

Password Management from Anywhere.  I not only use this for my business but also for my personal


(FREE!) Click Here

How to Screen Record With Loom.  Loom is the best screen recorder for Chrome, Mac, Windows, iOS, and Android. It’s quick to install, easy to use, and free.  I use it to help train my VA and to show my clients and potential clients how to do something. 

(FREE!) Click Here

Automated note taking.  Still manually taking notes? Generate rich notes for meetings, interviews, lectures, and other important voice conversations with Otter, your AI-powered assistant.

Pin Inspector 

(FREE!) Click Here

Pin Inspector Pin Inspector is the world’s first Pinterest content research desktop software with 6 powerful built-in tools for easily uncovering hidden high-converting posts, videos, boards, pinners, ads and top trending searches from the massively popular social media network!  Use coupon code: PIN20 at checkout for $20 off

Disclaimer: As it’s not an “approved” pinterest tool, I don’t link it to my Pinterest specifically just in case.


Social Squares

(PAID!) Click Here (use Code JEN20)

Social Squares is my FAVORITE and exclusive stock photo company.  They work primarily with female entrepreneurs from all types of business. Their subscription provides a gallery of over 6k images that are so perfect for social media, websites and anywhere.  They are bright, come in a variety of colors which you can search for, and fit most brands.  They don’t just provide a gallery of images, they also offer captions and marketing tips monthly from amazing experts (I am a contributor) and an amazing community of smart women running all kinds of businesses that you can chat with in their private Facebook community.  I always say, run, don’t walk to sign up so you can put a brand forward that will book clients. 


(PAID!) Click Here

Payments infrastructure for the internet.  Millions of companies of all sizes—from startups to Fortune 500s—use Stripe’s software and APIs to accept payments, send payouts, and manage their businesses online.


(FREE!) Click Here

(for Pinterest and IG automation):  Save time scheduling to Pinterest and Instagram, post at the best times for engagement, grow together with Communities, get more actionable analytics.  I have been using Tailwind since February of 2018 and still tried all the competitors.  Hands down it’s the best social media third party platform. 

It posts to Pinterest, Instagram and Facebook and it saves me so much time with its tool.  I love Tailwind Create and Ghostwriter.  I can do away with chatGPT and Canva because of them, but I use them for other things so not just yet.  

Full discloser, I help Tailwind with education so it is truly a favorite tool I believe in!


(FREE!) Click Here

Voxer is a Walkie Talkie messaging app for your smartphone with live voice (like a PTT walkie talkie), text, photo and location sharing.  I use Voxer daily.  I use it to communicate effectively and easily with my VA as it’s so much easier to talk than to text.  And, I use it for all of my clients for my Pinterest Strategy Academy, VIP Days, and Agency clients. But also my female networking and coaching groups!

World Time Buddy

(FREE) Click Here

World Time Buddy is a popular visual time converter, scheduler, and world clock. Millions of people across the globe rely on our app and website to schedule meetings and events. This is the easiest to use, yet advanced, world clock app for dealing with time across multiple time zones!


(FREE + PAID!) Click Here

You may already be familiar with WordPress. This famous website platform boasts of providing 28% of all the websites on the globe. That’s a lot of sites! These websites are relatively easy to design, but many business owners hire a web designer to set everything up. I did mine myself with the help of Divi Plugin. Adding content and images is really easy; very similar to Microsoft Word. 


(FREE!) Click Here

You can conduct online meetings and share screens with your clients. There is a free option with limited features and Pro plans.  You can do webinars also.  Zoom is kinda a staple since 2020.  It’s a no brainer!


I hope all my favorite business tools for female entrepreneurs was super helpful. Reminder — try a few in each niche and pick the one that works best for how you like to work and how your brain works (i.e. what comes easiest to you to intuitively learn a system).


Don’t Forget To Pin It!!

My Favorite Business Tools for Entrepreneurs
My Favorite Business Tools for Entrepreneurs
My Favorite Business Tools for Entrepreneurs
My Favorite Business Tools for Entrepreneurs
My Favorite Business Tools for Entrepreneurs
Let’s Create Three Months of Blogs With These 5 Steps

Let’s Create Three Months of Blogs With These 5 Steps

Let’s Create Three Months of Blogs in these 5 Steps!

Welcome back, if you are familiar with my blog. If you are new here, I’m jen Vazquez a Marketing Strategist.

I help female entrepreneurs go from overwhelm to an easy streamlined marketing strategy that includes Pinterest + repurposing content to grow their business with very little time.

1| Determine Content Pillars or Buckets For Your Blog

When it comes to blogs, the question I hear the most is: What the heck do I even blog about?  This of course means what do I blog about that people want to read.

The best way to figure this out is to consider what your business focus is and what services/products you sell.  This will center around what your expertise is and what you feel confident about teaching. You should blog about things you are an expert at (and sell services for) and what your ideal client is searching for.

What you should blog about by Jen Vazquez Marketing Strategist
There are typically 3-5 different types of content which are often called content pillars or content buckets.

As an example for my coaching business it’s Pinterest Strategy, Marketing Strategy, Repurposing Content, and Keywords

If you are a wedding photographer, your pillars or content buckets are weddings, engagements, and wedding planning.  You aren’t a wedding planner, but you can talk about the steps that couples take when first planning a wedding. In their wedding process where they typically hire a wedding photographer like picking a venue, wedding dress shopping, picking a date, etc.  

Just remember that the point of providing these free tips, advice, and resources on your blog goes to building that know, like, and trust process with a potential client. 

2 | Brainstorm Topic Ideas For Each Category

For this brainstorming session, we are ignoring the wedding and engagement sessions that you blog.  But ensure you use the venue, city, county, etc. when writing that blog.

First, spend 20-30 minutes and just write out all the things you can think of that your ideal client is struggling with or is searching for.  Consider what your leads or current clients ask.

You can use these tools to consider what is being searched for the most:

The goal is to come up with 4 blogs for each content pillar or bucket, so you have a minimum of 12 blogs ideas.

3 | Research the titles that you have to make them better

The sweet spot for the best blog titles is to find a title that has a good search volume but low competition. 

Also, consider if you are a service-based business locally to use multiple city/location keywords.  You can use the tools I mentioned above.

4 | Create a content calendar for the next three months

Identify which blogs you’ll use for which week.  Consider what you may be launching or for wedding pros where your clients are in the wedding planning process.

You can use software (asana, notion, Monday, Trello) or spreadsheet-like I offer.  The KEY is to ensure that you plan and schedule this content so you know what to do each week.

Bonus points for those that take a few days to write out the three months of blogs.  You can also take a day each month and write four blogs.  For that type of planning, definitely try different things to see which one works best for you.

Also consider your busy season and how much help it will be to not have to write blogs during that time if you do it ahead of time.

5 | Create 5-7 social media posts from each blog

If you do this, you’ll end up with a minimum of 15-20 social media posts for the quarter that you don’t have to come up with.

For the rest, consider Introductions, lead magnet invites, educational and inspirational posts.

Get my blogging content calendar for FREE by clicking the button below.


If you need help with Pinterest, let me know by clicking here.

Don’t Forget to Pin It!

5 steps to create three months of blogs
Let's Create Three Months of Blogs in 5 Steps
How To Create Three Months of Blogs in 5 Steps
Let's Create Three Months of Blogs in 5 Steps
Let's Create Three Months of Blogs in 5 Steps

Here is more information that may be helpful!

Blog My Simple Core Content System and How To Repurpose It!

Blog My Simple Core Content System and How To Repurpose It!

Core content is simple. It’s content that aligns with your audience’s interests while simultaneously generating demand for your product or service.

An example, I’m a wedding photographer. So my core content in that business is education or sharing my service which helps my ideal client find me on Google or social media. 

It may be a blog of a wedding I did, featuring the city and venue (keywords) so google serves it up to couples searching for wedding vendors or venues. 

It may be wedding planning advice (how to find the best photographer, you’re engaged now what, how to pick a venue for the best images, etc).

Your core content can be a blog, Youtube video, or Podcast.  Let’s use a blog as an example.  

So after you create the blog, research the title to use the best keywords, you’ll want to repurpose to YouTube or podcast, or Instagram live. 

Then here is how you’ll repurpose. 

Here are just some ways that I repurpose for you to get the gist.  Here they are:


  • Start with a blog about your expertise 
  • create a YouTube of slideshow images
  • create a reel of behind the scenes
  • it becomes a video on Pinterest
  • video on LinkedIn
  • video on tik tok
  • video on YouTube 
  • add a video to blog
  • create an idea pin featuring the venue 
  • turn that info another reel 
  • create a IG carousel post tagging all vendors
  • create a venue guide by adding all images for that venue
  • create a carousel on bouquets and include one of the images from this wedding
  • google my business. Add a review of the venue saying how you love photographing there and add your images
  • share any of the above from time to time on stories 
  • share stories from the past (tag all vendors)
  • write a spotlight venue blog with the images from any wedding there
  • top 10 or 20 wedding of the year blog
  • anniversary IG post

That’s just a few ideas.  If you do this for each wedding and educational blog, you’ll never have to worry about creating more content.  Creating a core piece of content each week is the best to really drive traffic. And all of that content will help to get you found.

In addition, don’t forget that each piece of core content can create around 5-7 IG posts, reels, or other social media content.


If you need help with Pinterest, shoot me an email HERE.

Don’t forget to pin it!

My Simple Core Content System and How To Repurpose It!
My Simple Core Content System and How To Repurpose It!
My Simple Core Content System and How To Repurpose It!
My Simple Core Content System and How To Repurpose It!
My Simple Core Content System and How To Repurpose It!

Here is more information that may be helpful!

How to make marketing easier and less time consuming in 2022

How to make marketing easier and less time consuming in 2022

The question I get most asked from clients and potential clients is…… How to make marketing easier and less time-consuming in 2022.

Today I’ll be sharing my answer with everyone.  If you have a plan and a strategy that is focused on your business goals, it makes the whole process of marketing easier!

The plan and strategy are around your process for marketing and of course consistently, which is the hardest part of marketing.  If you are consistent, you’ll see growth in terms of analytics.

The other key to making it easier and less time-consuming is REPURPOSING.

Repurposing existing content is secret!  We’ll cover a few different ideas of how to take content that already exists, as well as, creating a process for your marketing that starts with one piece of content which turns into content for all social media platforms and more.

I excited for you to walk away from this episode with a bunch of new ideas.  AND…. a mindset to follow a process that will give you more time to spend doing what you love, instead of creating content!

If you want more in-depth help with this, I’d love to personally invite you to join my friend Kim Baker Gomez and my free masterclass discussing how to use video and repurpose it EVERYWHERE!  You can sign up for free here.

Quality vs. Quantity

When you are a solopreneur, you feel like you can never create enough content.  Every time you turn around, you need something else.  The key is to understand that you always want to start with quality content.  Quality content is what your ideal client is typing into that search bar to find your content.  

Google as well as your ideal client wants quality content.  The better your content is, the more trust you are building with that person and Google’s algorithm is very good at finding quality content and sharing it far and wide.

Consistency creates trust with the google algorithm.  It sees you consistently pumping out quality content and will drive more traffic to your blog, and ultimately your business will grow.


Consistency is something I talk about a lot.  It’s typically the one missing piece for success on social media and online. 

Algorithms love consistently and tend to produce better engagement and your stuff gets seen more.  And people love depending upon your steady stream of content.  Oftentimes if consistency falls, so does follows and engagement.

The Most Effective Pinterest Marketing Strategy for 2022 by Jen Vazquez Pinterest Strategist

Marketing System

What makes marketing easier is if you have a system or process that you replicate week after week.  When you have a system or process, it helps you be consistent and over time you get faster at doing it.

Most of my clients come to me with inconsistent marketing because they have little to no time.  Whether they are running multiple businesses, have young kids at home, or something else, my typical ideal client has no time and is looking for help.  If they don’t outsource to me, the next best thing is to create a simple system that they follow each week. 

Here’s a peek into what that looks like for most of my clients:

Start with CORE CONTENT. 

This is typically a blog, youtube video, or podcast.  (if you want a quicker way to do a blog, I’ve recommended clients talk out loud on their cell phone voice recorder or even better use  You talk and it types.  You would then obviously edit so that it’s good but this way you talk to type and it comes across far more authentic and readable.

Create Graphics/Repurposing Content.  

Once the blog writing and editing are complete.  At a different time of day, you will sit down and create graphics.  Here’s a list of the main things, but you can add many more to that.

  • Header graphic
  • Facebook/LinkedIn Graphic
  • Pinterest pin graphics which can also become IG stories
  • Idea Pin which becomes a Pinterest Video, IG carousel, IG Reel, Tik Tok, IG video post


Store these graphics in a folder on google or dropbox with the title of the blog so you can quickly find it and use graphics throughout the year.

I have mentioned above ways to repurpose the content but the key is to create all the graphics at one time.  When you are writing/editing, it’s a different part of your brain than when you are creating a graphic.  I find I save a ton of time by doing like-minded things at the same time.  

Storing them in a folder on google or dropbox helps you to find them quickly when you are in a pinch for new content on social media!  YES, you can use them again.  Almost NO ONE sees all your content in total and will notice when you use something again.  Especially in IG stories.  For posts, wait 3 months and you should be good!


I know it feels and sometimes is time-consuming, but it’s super helpful to ensure that your content is being seen by your ideal client and spread as far as possible.  

There are two times when research can be done. 

The first is when you have a topic.  You can research to find the best title for the blog, video, or podcast.  I like using ubersuggest, google keyword planner, Keywords Everywhere which is a chrome plugin that will automatically give you options when you search on google to the right side. In addition, you can also simply type your idea into google to see what appears in the drop-down menu.

The second is after you write the blog and are looking for alternative keywords to use in the blog to use different types of keywords to attract your ideal client.  Also, you can use the keywords to use on Pinterest pins, titles, descriptions.

Here’s the key to not overwhelm yourself especially if you are inclined to be a perfectionist (hmm I’m offended by what I just wrote ).  Even if you set a timer for 5 minutes and that’s it, it will be helpful to know what words are highly searched to boost your blogs (and all content) reach.

If you struggle with writing blogs or being consistent and research is that roadblock, ignore it for right now and just write a blog.  While I’m on that topic, blogs should be more than 300 words, but if that’s a roadblock, even doing a few paragraphs to get a groove on consistency will really help and then increase it over time.

How Often Should I Create Core Content?

Since there really isn’t a perfect rhythm that Google recommends. Consider what you will commit to, what feels doable, and doesn’t overwhelm you. Whatever you choose, ensure that it’s consistent!  If you can, try doing it weekly or biweekly.  But if all you can do is monthly, that’s fine, as long as you commit and do it.

PRO TIP:  Batching is the key to being consistent and making it easier.  Remember when I spoke about working on like-minded things? If you create your four pieces of core content all in one day, you’ll be working so much faster than doing it each week.  Then each week you can work on the graphics for each piece of core content.

Let me know if I missed anything or if this was helpful over on Instagram! 

​don’t forget to pin it!


Group Coaching for Pinterest

If you’d like help, I have a group coaching program called Pinterest Strategy Academy with two live sessions each week.  Also, there is a mastermind where we dive deep into one topic and workshop-style do the work, guest speakers and 10 Pin templates each month. Find out more!

Here is more information that may be helpful!

Why You Should Take Advantage of Social Media Stories

Why You Should Take Advantage of Social Media Stories

Social media stories are a series of small fifteen-second clips that are live for twenty-four hours or longer, depending on your platform, that works together to tell your audience an engaging story. Of course, the story you tell depends on your overall goals, niche, and objectives as a business owner. In 2019, over a billion and a half people and businesses utilized the stories featured on their platform every single day. This fact should show you just how important and vital this tool is today as a business owner. 

3 most important reasons to take advantage of social media stories for your business: 

To Increase Brand Awareness and Exposure

Social media stories are highly shareable content, making it easy to increase your exposure and awareness on the internet. Bringing value to your audience ensures that they want to share it with their peers, increasing your views and exposure. A vital step to the success of any business on the web. It’s simple, the more people you can get to view your content, the more likely your viewership or audience will grow. Social media stories are another creative and interactive avenue to do this.

To Humanize and Personalize Your Brand

Social media stories are powerful because they are viewed as a more personal and less informal way to communicate with your audience. Showing your human side effectively increases your reputation as a business, as many viewers see this as a more trustworthy trait. This inspires more trust and credibility required to transition your readers or viewers into loyal or paying customers. Being more personable and human also shows your relatability beyond your business responsibilities and goals. You can understand what your audience goes through daily.

To Increase Audience Engagement and Interaction

Audience engagement is how you keep them interested in your business. It also provides them value or solves a problem, further increasing your exposure and reputation as a brand or business. Again, the more value you bring, the more successful you will be. Engaging content keeps your viewers wanting more and provides you more resources to update and perfect your products or services.

Take advantage of these benefits by adding social media stories to your marketing plan today. The more tools you use within each platform, like stories, the easier it can be to build your awareness and exposure as a business while improving your audience engagement and participation. In other words, not taking advantage of social media stories is a poor decision and only shows your audience that you don’t care to adapt or provide them more value.

FYI I have a membership that may help you!

I talk a lot about my membership is about repurposing content and getting your lead magnets and freebies out there.  If you’d like to see what that is all about you can check it out here.

If you need help with anything email marketing, shoot me an email HERE.

3 most important reasons to take advantage of social media stories for your business:
3 most important reasons to take advantage of social media stories for your business:

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3 most important reasons to take advantage of social media stories for your business:
3 most important reasons to take advantage of social media stories for your business:
3 most important reasons to take advantage of social media stories for your business:
How I’m Choosing Goals + GRIT over New Year’s Resolutions (inspired by Angela Duckworth and Will Smith)

How I’m Choosing Goals + GRIT over New Year’s Resolutions (inspired by Angela Duckworth and Will Smith)

If you want success in your business, choose goals and GRIT instead of New Year’s Resolutions!

As we go into the new year, we’ll all hear talk about resolutions.  It’s the time honored thing that we humans do. But how effective are New Year’s resolutions?

According to Forbes, about 50% of us humans make resolutions (from losing weight to healthy living, to business goals).  Sadly by February, virtually every study tells us that approximately 80% of New Year’s resolutions will get abandoned.

Instead of New Year’s Resolutions, do this instead!

This year, instead of making a new year’s resolution, I am going to create a business goal of including GRIT into my business goals.

What is GRIT? I found that answer in discovering Dr. Angelia Duckworth, the foremost expert on the subject with an extremely popular TED talk (with 25,293,047 views) and New York Times best selling author.

When I watched the Ted Talk many years ago, it hit me so hard because it makes so much sense on why certain people success and others don’t.  

How I'm Choosing Goals and GRIT over New Year's Resolutions

Grit Explained

Dr. Duckworth explains GRIT in this way, GRIT is passion and sustained persistence applied toward long-term achievement, with no particular concern for rewards or recognition along the way. It combines resilience, ambition, and self-control in the pursuit of goals that take months, years, or even decades.

Grit is NOT talent. Grit isn’t luck. Grit isn’t how intensely, for the moment, you want something.

Defined by Angela Duckworth, Ph.D., GRIT is a personality trait that has been described as passion and perseverance for long-term goals even in the face of adversity.

According to Dr. Duckworth, GRIT is a common factor among high-achieving individuals. Her research suggests that grit is unrelated to IQ but closely related to the conscientiousness factor on the Big Five Personality Test

In psychology, grit is understood as a personality trait that is related to an individual’s perseverance in pursuing particular long-term goals. Individuals with high grit have a decisive drive to keep going in order to achieve the objective. 

This stubbornness related to effort is presumed to promote the overcoming of setbacks or roadblocks that are in the way of a person completing their objectives.   Grit serves as an essential prerequisite for a person to meet their goal. While today grit is often looked at by the work of Dr. Angela Duckworth, the trait has also been described by other thinkers like William James, Francis Galton, and Aristotle.

How I'm Choosing Goals and GRIT over New Year's Resolutions

Someone who shows GRIT

Who shows GRIT according to Dr. Duckworth? Will Smith does!.  

Angela Duckworth illustrated the concept of grit with a clip of actor Will Smith, in an interview in which he was essentially asked how a poor kid from Philadelphia with no connections in Hollywood had made it big. Smith, who has elsewhere credited his success to his “ridiculous, sickening work ethic,” answered this way: “The only thing that I see that is distinctively different about me is, I’m not afraid to die on a treadmill,” he said. “You might have more talent than me, you might be smarter than me, but if we get on the treadmill together, right, there’s two things: You’re getting off first, or I’m going to die.”

Book and Youtube Video

I have to say I really enjoyed listening to Will Smith’s Book ” Will” and it’s amazing! About his book “One of the most dynamic and globally recognized entertainment forces of our time opens up fully about his life, in a brave and inspiring book that traces his learning curve to a place where outer success, inner happiness, and human connection are aligned. Along the way,Will tells the story in full of one of the most amazing rides through the worlds of music and film that anyone has ever had.

Will Smith’s transformation from a West Philadelphia kid to one of the biggest rap stars of his era, and then one of the biggest movie stars in Hollywood history, is an epic tale — but it’s only half the story.  He thought, with good reason, that he had won at life: Not only was his own success unparalleled, his whole family was at the pinnacle of the entertainment world. Only they didn’t see it that way: They felt more like star performers in his circus, a seven-days-a-week job they hadn’t signed up for. It turned out Will Smith’s education wasn’t nearly over. 

This memoir is the product of a profound journey of self-knowledge, a reckoning with all that your will can get you and all that it can leave behind. Written with the help of Mark Manson, author of the multi-million-copy best seller The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck, Will is the story of how one person mastered his own emotions, written in a way that can help everyone else do the same. Few of us will know the pressure of performing on the world’s biggest stages for the highest of stakes, but we can all understand that the fuel that works for one stage of our journey might have to be changed if we want to make it all the way home. The combination of genuine wisdom of universal value and a life story that is preposterously entertaining, even astonishing, puts Will the book, like its author, in a category by itself.

His Youtube Video is amazing also.  It’s about his journey to lose 20lbs and finish his book in 20 weeks.  The ups and downs as authentically shared by Will was inspiration and real!  You can watch that here.

Will  by Will Smith

New Year’s Resolutions VS Goals and Grit

Let’s get back to how this connects to new year’s resolutions?  Since so many people give up resolutions, I encourage small business owners to create goals, with step by step ways to accomplish them and include grit into the mix to stay on course and persevere.  

You know the saying, ‘How do you eat an elephant’? While I find this analogy offensive because I love elephants, the point holds true. 

When you have a big goal, don’t focus on the big goal, focus on the tiny steps that get you to that big goal week after week.

How I'm Choosing Goals and GRIT over New Year's Resolutions

Do you have GRIT? 

What about you?  Since GRIT is not a natural talent but rather a focus and determination, you can!

Do you want to find out your GRIT Score from Angela Duckworth grit calculator.  In order to get the most effective results, you must be honest when asking these questions.  

Talent isn’t the most important thing to consider, it’s the passion you have for that subject and how dedicated you are to staying the course and ultimately how ok you are with getting up time and time again when things don’t go as planned.


I have been described as someone who has grit by business friends and family.    When I’m passionate about something, I am focused on each step that gets me to my goal and rarely let laziness or failure get in my way.  I dust off and find another way to achieve it.  

For me, failure is always one step closer to my goals.  I’ve learned to embrace failures (even while I have a tiny pity party in the moment of failure.).  This I know to be true.  Success, which I define as growth, is always around the corner of failure.

How I'm Choosing Goals and GRIT over New Year's Resolutions


How are you going to apply GRIT to your business goals this year?  I’d love to hear on this post. (IG POST)

Inspiration for this podcast

I’d like to give credit for this blog post to Chasing Life with Dr. Sanjay Gupta Podcast who featured an episode of the  podcast A Slight Change of Plans.  You can listen to that here The Science of Grit which hosted by Maya Shankar talking to psychologist Angela Duckworth about Grit. 

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How I'm Choosing Goals and GRIT over New Year's Resolutions
How I'm Choosing Goals and GRIT over New Year's Resolutions
How I'm Choosing Goals and GRIT over New Year's Resolutions
How I'm Choosing Goals and GRIT over New Year's Resolutions