Have you ever played the game “Would you rather”? You ask questions like …
Would you rather lose all your money and valuables or all of the pictures you have ever taken?
Would you rather live in the wilderness far from civilization or live on the streets of a city as a homeless person?
Would you rather have an easy job working for someone else or work for yourself but work incredibly hard?
Now let me ask you this question; Would you rather leave this world being known as someone who had a wildly successful LIFE or a wildly successful BUSINESS?
When I ask new entrepreneurial clients this question, there’s always a few that make it crystal clear they are Professionals (with a capital P thank you very much) looking for help with their Business (capital B) and none of this woo woo Life Coach stuff. For fear of losing any clients in my early years of practice , I would dutifully coach strictly on sales and marketing strategies, analyzing financials, creating operations manuals, staff policies, business stuff, business stuff, business stuff.
We would two step around the fact that;
- they dreaded going home at the end of the day.
- trying to communicate with their spouse or play with their kids took too much energy so they would drown themselves in merlot and M&M’s.
- we ignored that their health was in the crapper as they suffered with chronic pain and carrying more weight than they felt comfortable.
- we would work together to create amazing incentives, workshops, and events for staff but they can’t remember the last time they planned a dinner for friends.
As entrepreneurs we are the physical embodiment of the companies we create. You will often hear us say that WE ARE OUR BUSINESS. And you know what that means? When our business is a success, we are a success. #Winning. And sadly, the opposite is also true (well, just in our thoughts…but that’s another blog).
If our bottom line is in the red #Losing, we have two choices as entrepreneurs;
- we can bury our head in the sand until the bank and the CRA come knocking
- or we can look at the areas that are under performing; determine the cause of this under performance and strategize action steps to propel our business forward to meet the financial goals of the company.
So of course we do the latter, because remember, we are our business! And when our business is a success, so are we. Super! Back in the black and life is grand. Right? Wait a sec, hold on…I couldn’t hear you through the handfuls of M&M’s and the gulps of Merlot. You’re wondering why you don’t feel successful? Maybe you are questioning your definition of success? Is it possible there’s more to it than a healthy bottom line?
If you believe there is, you would be in very good company.
Richard Branson’s definition is “true success should be measured by how happy you are”.
Bill Gates defined success by two factors: “making a difference and taking care of the people closest to you.”
Warren Buffet has always said “the measure (of success) is whether the people close to you are happy and love you.”
(You know I had to bring in the big guns just in case the opinion of Coach KI wasn’t enough.)
So, it appears that in order to reach true success we simply cannot separate Life and Business. I have experienced this personally and been witness to so many people that decided to up their Life game and in turn, totally started killing it in their professional lives. Success for an entrepreneur (and really anyone!) is a Life/Business mash up and you can’t have one without the other.
The good news is… you got this! You can apply the same strategy as you would if your business was in the red. Of course, you do have the suffocating option of head in sand but I might recommend door number two. Is that opportunity knocking? (sorry, I’m going metaphor mad now)
The first step to creating a wildly successful life is to take an honest look at your personal Profit and Loss statement.
List all the areas of importance to you like family, friends, health, romance, life purpose, personal development, creativity, community, sports, etc. I want you to then go through each line and determine which of these important areas of your life are in the red. Where does it feel like the bad (liabilities) outweigh the good (assets). You will know which ones these are by how you feel when you think about them. If it’s all sunshine and roses and butterflies in the stomach then move on. If you’re feeling confusion, anger, frustration, sadness, or loss and your stomach is tight and your face is clenched…you are in the red my friend. And red means stop.
Stop, and take whatever time and resources are needed to breathe life into this critical area of your life. It deserves love and attention, and you deserve to know what true success feels like.
I think one of the best parts about working with my entrepreneurial clients on their life goals is to witness how almost effortlessly their business begins to soar as they get their house in order. When we start #Winning at LIFE we never have to make the “would you rather” choice. BUSINESS can’t help but tag along for the ride.