When people think about what it takes to start a business, words like “struggle” and “stress” come to mind. But it was rewriting that narrative that allowed me to thrive as an entrepreneur.
I’ve always been a shy and anxious person. But in 2020, I made an effort to rewire my mindset and launched my Excel workout side hustle, Miss Excel, by posting a TikTok video of me dancing in front of an Excel spreadsheet.
My passion for teaching people how to use Excel showed – and in February 2021 I was making enough money to quit my 9-to-5 job and grow my business full-time.
Since using Miss Excel in a software training business, I’ve made over $1 million in sales. Ninety-five percent of that is passive income course selling. Once I even made $ 100,000 in sales – in just one day.
Overcoming my fears and making this leap has allowed me to work about 15 hours a week and spend the rest of my time traveling. Here are five books that helped me get started by boosting my confidence and growing my entrepreneurial mindset:
1. “Dot Com Secrets: The Underground Playbook for Growing Your Business Online with Sales Funnels”
By Russell Brunson
This is a tactical guide to building a digital distribution business. Russell Brunson, founder of software company ClickFunnels, has helped entrepreneurs sell millions of dollars worth of products and services.
I have used the strategies outlined in his book to build lead generation techniques and sales funnels that allow my online courses to sell and generate passive income without any additional work on my part.
2. “You’re a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Live an Awesome Life”
By Jen Sincero
Written by success coach Jen Sincero, this book helped me identify my self-limiting beliefs so I could deconstruct them and build my confidence enough to run my own business.
The fun, bite-sized chapters with relatable stories, sage advice, and simple exercises kept me motivated and inspired.
3. “Twelve and a Half: Leveraging the Emotional Ingredients Necessary for Business Success”
By Gary Vaynerchuk
With honesty and humility, bestselling author, Resy co-founder and investor Gary Vaynerchuk shares the most important business skills and practical tips on how to develop them.
This book is a great starting point for entrepreneurs to identify opportunities for personal growth fueled by deep self-inquiry.
4. “Quantum Success: 7 Essential Laws for a Thriving, Joyful, and Successful Relationship with Work and Money”
By Christy Whitman
Life coach Christy Whitman shares a 10-step plan for building strong inner connections with professional contacts, creating a culture of appreciation for the people in your network, and magnetizing future relationships and opportunities.
Applying the principles in this book has helped me unlock opportunities—from press spots to corporate sponsorships—and grow my business with incoming leads instead of paying for advertising.
5. “Think and grow rich”
By Napoleon Hill
This book is an inspirational classic that has sold over 100 million copies. It shares the wisdom of more than 500 of America’s most successful personalities, grouped into 13 Principles of Success.
The case studies in this book gave me the inspiration I needed to make my dream come true, while the mindset advice gave me the tools.
Kat Norton teaches Microsoft Excel to individuals, businesses, and educational institutions. Since launch Miss Excel In 2020 she grew them tick tock and Instagram audience of over 1 million followers.
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