I was reading a book the other day. I was in a hurry to get my reading done for the day so I could check it off my list and move to the next item. The topic of the chapter really knocked me on the head – especially with my hurried attitude! It reminded me about the importance of having margin in our lives.
If we fill every waking moment with activity and spend less time with our families and time just “being still” we will burn out quickly. Margin is important to maintain a healthy balance. Without it we will get tired and possibly lose motivation to keep our passions going in our business and other areas of our life.
It was a great reminder for me and thought it might be for you too.
Just a thought…
What is holding you back?
Each of us has at least one thing that holds us back from reaching the “next level”. The next level is different for each of us personally and professionally.
In working with and talking to many small business owners and entrepreneurs I see some of these obstacles repeatedly. This is a great exercise for me to look at my own business and think critically about what is holding me back from my next level.
- Complacency – complacency is a killer. If you are complacent you are moving backward.
- Fear – fear can immobilize you and keep you stuck.
- Hesitation – hesitation can be good until you can make an informed decision. Many hesitate out of fear and we know where that gets you.
- Snap decisions – while hesitation can immobilize you, making snap decisions bring your company down in the blink of an eye.
- Lack of balance – having a balance between work and your personal life is a key element to success. It seems that lack of balance catches some people early in life and for others it takes years. I find myself in the middle years – I pray I choose to continue striving for balance.
- Lack of planning – business plans, marketing plans and operational plans are critical for business success. Plans no longer have to be 50 page tomes that no one will read much less follow, but plans are still necessary.
- Lack of flexibility – plans are important. SO is flexibility. Plans are not chiseled in stone (they should not be). Whatever plans you make will change. If you expect this up front and can “go with the flow” you are less likely to hit other obstacles such as fear, hesitation or snap decisions.
I could go on and on. There are so many obstacles. What obstacles are you facing and, more importantly, how are you overcoming them? I’d love to hear your success stories and your struggles.
When you get bad news what do you do? Do you look for the downside or for the upside? It is very difficult to look for the upside in things when you lose a client, lose revenue or lose a strategic partner. Sometimes there is no upside – at least not one that is very apparent.
I believe everything happens for a reason – even in business.
- Sometimes a client leaves to make room for a new client or clients that you may not even know are coming down the pipeline
- Sometimes you lose revenue from one source to gain it back thorough another
- Sometimes you lose revenue to prompt you to cut expenses
- Sometimes you lose a strategic partner because they were not as strategic as you thought they were
- Sometimes things fail because you were simply supposed to do something different
No matter which role in my life: small business owner; wife; mother; volunteer or friend I try to receive “bad” news by looking for the upside or the lesson behind the turn of events. It has been my experience that many times there is a lesson I am supposed to learn through the “bad” experiences. I seem to learn the hard way – sometimes I have to get knocked upside the head to realize I need to make a change.
Is your head hard too?
How do you handle “bad” news in business?