” Change is part of our existence. How you respond to change is what creates the impact. ”
How often and how clearly, do you listen to yourself? Do you always take notice? For instance, if you’re body is tired, do you go to bed earlier that night? If you need a break from work, do you get up, stretch and grab a glass of water? These are simple things that we need to respond to to change our state, how we’re feeling, and create an impact on our body.
What about your work life? If you run your own business, do you notice what’s going on in your business and in your industry? Are you listening to your customers – whether it’s feedback or lower sales? Do you investigate each aspect of your business regularly?
In the 15 years I’ve been in business there’s been massive change in technology, buying habits, the shape of the high street, media coverage. And of course, social media has changed how news and ideas travel, and what people see regularly. We may not like the changes that happen in our society, but they affect the environment in which we live and work, so at the very least we need to notice them. And ideally, notice what effect those changes are having on our own life and business.
Are you listening to your business as well as yourself?
If you don’t spend time noticing and listening to yourself or your business, you won’t make changes. Maybe there’s some tweaks you can make to your product or service, or exercise plan or nutrition that will make an impact on the results you want to achieve.
I’ve noticed that some business owners I work with are frightened of change. In fact, I was the same at one time, so I do understand. When you’ve got a plan, you feel you need to complete the plan otherwise you’ve failed. None of us like to fail do we? How about you think about making changes to the plan in response to what you’re hearing and noticing? What if you listened to yourself and realised that you don’t actually like doing that part of the work you do. Could someone else do it instead and benefit the growth of each individual and the business? As humans we’re very good at hiding things deep inside. We put things in a box and hide it in another box, and often throw away the key thinking we’ll be safe now. But you haven’t changed anything have you? You’ve just hidden something hoping it will go away.
These past few months for me have been about change. It’s been brought about from completing my book, “Passion is not Enough – Explore your passion and grow your business or social enterprise“, which is available this week. I’ve listened even harder and changed the shape of my businesses, and my focus, to do what I really want to do – Inspire others to listen to themselves to take the action to move forward so that they can inspire others.
I won’t lie, it was hard at first, as I had all these plans for the year ahead. I felt I was letting people down by not completing them. But then I realised I’d be letting myself down if I didn’t listen to myself, and letting others down if I stuck with things which weren’t quite right for me. It’s not easy. But I can say now, in launch week that it’s totally worth it.
So my focus has shifted slightly, and I’m delighted to be offering a series of short workshops and Q&A to help people turn Passion into Profit. If you’d like access to these, or join a session live, please join us here (you need to confirm you want this information sending to you). By the end of the two weeks there’ll be 8 short workshops, plus Q&A with attendees on different topics relating to growing your business. There’s a conversation channel too for continuing to learn together, and support you to listen and explore any changes that you want to try in your life and business.
Book launch 17th May 2019
I invite you to my online book launch on 17th May, 1pm. I’ll be holding this on Facebook, and I’d love to celebrate this day with you. You can pre-order the book here, and I’d be delighted to send you a copy from the office, for yourself or a friend who’s currently exploring setting up a business or social enterprise. The feedback from a wide variety of readers has been that it’s helped individuals explore all sorts of aspects of their life and work.
Wherever you are on your journey, on your plan for the year, or your life plan, I encourage you to take time to listen. Really listen to yourself and notice what you’d like to change. The 90 day Passion into Profit programme (which will be slightly longer than that due to a short trip to Africa for me – more of that another time), is a small group programme to help you to do just that – listen more, and maybe listen differently to yourself and your business. We’re starting 3rd June. If you’d like to know more, message me and we’ll book a call to see if this is right for you. (Still got some technology fixes to do, like my online diary!)
“It’s really good to feel guided and supported and Tracey-Jane seems to have a limitless supply of encouragement” Lora
It’s been a fascinating few months for me. I feel like I’ve been hiding away, working on a few projects, and now suddenly I’m at the end of the tunnel where I can see the wonderful view. Ever felt like that yourself?
Your life, your work, your way
This is one of my personal mantras. I share this idea with those I work with, as well as friends and family. I’ve shared it for a while. But it’s only these last few months that I’ve really understood what this means to me.
I’ve been writing a book. I now know this will be my first book, but I didn’t know that when I started it. I started out wanting to share my business story, so that others could learn from the
mistakes learning points I’ve made in my 15 years of running my own businesses.
What I’ve learnt through this process, with the support of an amazing [book] coach Dale Darley, is that writing a book can really help you process everything in a new way. It’s a different way of thinking. I thought I’d done all my thinking, sorting and processing over the past 2 years, and had got my business models clear. I thought I knew what I wanted to focus on and what my skills were.
Writing the book has fine tuned my life, my work in the right way for me.
I may well have been
hiding writing these past couple of months, but I’ve also been thinking and going on my own explorations with my own businesses and life.
Writing Passion is not Enough – Explore your passion and grow your business or social enterprise has helped me explore my own passions, and work out more clearly what my personal visions are for sharing them with others. I had to stop what I was previously doing to create time and space for this exploration.
I may have let some people down by this. If it’s affected you, I apologise. I know I haven’t taken opportunities which were available to me. It wasn’t the right time, and it was right that I let them pass by.
New way of working and living
At the end of this tunnel I’ve walked through is a new way of living and working for me. I’m clearer what I want, and how I want to achieve it. I know I’m a better listener, coach, mother, wife, friend, sister, volunteer, business owner, author, speaker, woman because of the time I’ve spent working through each step of this process.
The book is being launched 17th May, and I’m very excited about it 🙂 I’ve worked hard, but not in the way that most people imagine. There’s been a lot of soul searching. Daily journaling to get clear. I’ve used my team of coaches who have been so supportive and encouraging through these past few months. My online cheerleaders in the many groups I’m involved in and acquaintances who I’ve never met, but have encouraged and inspired. And my own Business Cheerleading Club members have been amazing. Thank you.
I’m clearer now about how all my interests and passions fit together. I’m focused on supporting others. I’ve created a new 90 day programme to help enterprise owners turn passion into profit. I’ve started my social enterprise Listen2Me.
And all because I listened to myself. Allowed myself the time to explore what was right for me.
I’d love to help you find your way too. I’m in the process of updating the ways I can help you, to make it easy for you to find a slot in my diary (some technological changes are needed). I suggest you book an Explore call for starters, and let’s see what’s best for you right now.
Do you think you are procrastinating for a reason?
It’s been fascinating working through daily journalling prompts from Dale Darley on the 101 days of Being Me journey since the start of the year. Her prompts have made me think deeply about aspects of my life and work. Some days I’ve been inspired to do new things. Other days I’ve reflected on the past. The whole process has shown me just how important it is to be me.
These reflections and writing daily, (I’ve added in an extra daily session to focus on me, as I wanted to maintain my usual morning reflections which I’ve enjoyed for over a year now), have helped me re-look at aspects of my life and work which may not be totally me, and don’t fit naturally into my vision for the future. Things which others may be ‘expecting’ me to do, without any agreement on my part.
Some of those things, like shopping, cooking, cleaning, washing are part of a parent’s role. However, I don’t remember signing up to all these extra duties when I first became a parent!
How many of the roles you take on are assumed roles?
We all have multiple roles in our lives. Some we assume ourselves, and others which may be something we agree to, but simply happen. Take being a daughter or son – that’s a role we have by nature of being a human being. Each one of us will have a different sense of what that role means, and how we play it.
Then there’s those roles which you may have as part of your work environment – a teacher, mentor, introducer, networker, library of knowledge. Others will assume you’re happy to do things by virtue that you’ve always done them, or you’re in “that role”.
In your friendship group or community you may be seen as “the organiser”, or “the communicator”. Roles which others assume you’re OK with. Are you?
Looking at myself these past 101 days, I’ve realised that some of the assumed roles I’m seen as aren’t naturally me. I’ve taken them on or grown into them because it’s needed and no-one else will do it; or, I’m being helpful; or I can’t say no to people who ask me to help them. Some of them aren’t me though and it feels out of sync with who I am to continue.
Have you got roles which aren’t totally right for you?
Are you procrastinating for a reason?
One of the things I’ve noticed is that when I’m doing things which aren’t part of my natural instincts I’ll procrastinate. I’ll put things off, not do them, or make excuses.
I’ve always known that when you find things challenging that’s when you procrastinate more. What I hadn’t realised until this recent personal development work, was how much I do isn’t naturally me. When I’m using my skills and talents to help others I can whip through a list of tasks which surprises me. My productivity is like lightning!
When I’m sorting out the car insurance renewal, for example, or thinking about things which are part of a role someone else has assigned to me, it can take me ages to get things sorted out.
Are you the same?
Knowing yourself better helps reduce procrastination
Out of all my learning about listening, listening to myself has been one of the most important lessons. Just like the 101 days of being me has helped me learn more about myself and what makes me me, I’ve allowed myself to listen and respond to what I’ve learnt.
About 18 months ago I discovered the Five Institute’s Vitality Test, and have been learning more about myself from the team ever since. It’s fascinating and has helped me understand that to be me, I need to embrace my differences, not hide them.
We’re all unique individuals. We all have talents and skills different from the rest of our family, friends and community. But we are often not encouraged to be different.
As teenagers we want to fit in and be accepted.
We want to fit in and get a job, a house, a car. Be part of a team and community.
And to do this we often hide parts of ourselves.
One of the books I’ve re-read during the last month is Brene Brown’s The Gifts of Imperfection. It was perfect for my learning more about myself. The other one I’ve loved is Michelle Obama’s Becoming. Both these books tell the story of realising you are you. You are perfect as you are. You don’t need to hide any part of you.
Be yourself, it’s much easier
My Body Brain Balance mentor Laura Donnelly, says, “Ease anywhere, is ease everywhere”. If you’re being yourself there’s no need to hid anything is there? You can simply be you. By being you, you’re doing the things you love and there’s no need to procrastinate about anything.
Sounds simple, right?
Well, I’ve certainly learnt lots these past few years, culminating in the journalling journey of the past 101 days. All these books, ideas, and even writing my own book called Passion is not enough, have taught me that I simply need to be me. When I’m me, I do my best work. I help more people. My love for my work and supporting others shines through.
Get over Procrastination Workshop
Even though I’ve learnt lots, I love learning and am looking forward to learning from Nick Haines from Five Institute about Procrastination in this 60 minute expert online workshop for the Business Cheerleading Club.
Nick will help us to understand ourselves a bit better so we can catch ourselves, or change the way we do things so we’re more ourself and don’t need to procrastinate.
Do you think you are procrastinating for a reason?
“ As long as you keep going you’ll keep getting better. And as you get better, you gain more confidence. That in itself is success ” Tamara Taylor
We had a lovely weekend with our boys, doing their sporty stuff this weekend. Eldest was at his athletics camp with similar talented athletes from across Britain, being helped and supported to develop his talents for long term success.
Youngest was trying out for Triathlon: To become part of a group of young people who compete in the Super Series across Britain, for the most talented triathletes of their age.
It was fascinating. Both sports ran sessions for “performance parents”, helping us to help our children maintain balance between sport and academic success. Talking about “Long term athlete development”, and it’s not about winning now, but as teenagers, (in these 2 sports), they’re just at the start of opportunities for representing their country, which could continue for many years to come. If they choose to continue to have this as a goal.
Yes both sports approach things differently, but the core messages were the same – building your success starts now. It’s not going to happen overnight. In triathlon they have 4 key values – Focus, Patience, Purpose and Commitment. Their focus is on developing independent learners in the sport, through challenge and discovery. They talked about being fearless in competition, and learning through each opportunity you take in the sport.
Learning through play
There was also a focus on “Training as Play”, where you need to learn to love training. If you don’t love what you do regularly each week, then you’re not going to be successful in the sport. It’ll be too hard for you. The most successful athletes are those who just love what they do. They often don’t think of it as training, even if to us as parents and observers, a 4 hour bike ride over steep hills sounds impossible to achieve!
Within both sessions there was a real sense of exploration. Using this time, with others who want you to succeed, to explore your talents, ideas, and test things out. Make decisions which you can reflect on and learn from. Make decisions to explore further, to challenge yourself and see what you love, or are capable of. There’s no failure in trying. In fact, if you don’t try, you fail to improve.
My 15 year old, the would be triathlete, didn’t end up where he wanted to be, by 4 places out of 144 starters. Yes he was disappointed, but he tried his best. He had a brilliant weekend, and learnt lots. In fact, it’s spurred him on even more to set new goals for the summer season. He’s clear what he wants to achieve, exploring this new sport he’s loving. He’s just at the start of his discovery phase, and we’re delighted that he wants to learn more and improve and enjoy this sport.
We may be biased, but we’ll get to go to some new places around the country with them both this year. We’ll all be exploring together, learning to love what we all do, and helping them to explore their talents and options for development, with our support.
What are you exploring next?
So as you start a new quarter of the year, what are you exploring and working towards? Who’s in your support team as you develop your ideas, bring something new to market, or reach out to new customers? Are you loving what you’re doing so it comes as natural to you as eating and drinking every day does? Do you feel safe to explore new options and opportunities as they come up?
The Business Cheerleading Club is a safe place to explore options, and be supported to grow and develop yourself and your ideas. This month we’ve got the brilliant Nick Haines leading the expert workshop on Procrastination, and there’s the usual 90 minute group coaching call. There’s space for you to explore with us, learning to take ownership of your business and the decisions you make, so you can grow your business.
What are you excited about this next quarter? I’d love to hear your plans. Leave a comment below.
I’ve been editing my book, “Passion is not enough“, which is due out later this month. That’s my excitement 🙂
” Kindness is the language the deaf can hear and the blind can see. “Mark Twain
The horror and revulsion after the shooting in New Zealand last Friday has left many people questioning kindness this weekend. We know horrors happen everyday. From poverty in our communities; to crimes which seem to go unnoticed, but not to the victims.
Yet, there is so much kindness in our communities that if we focused on that, would we spread kindness quicker?
We spent a wonderful time with friends this weekend, catching up, sharing laughter and food. Kindness was shared in hospitality, and the thoughtful gifts which were shared between friends. Each person listened to others as we updated them on our lives, and we learnt a little bit more about each other.
That’s no different from the way in which many people spend time – being with friends and family and listening and learning.
How often do you listen well?
How often do we listen to those we don’t know though? How often do we meet new people with no other purpose than to learn about them and what they’re up to? For no other reason than we’re interested?
Would our listening help us understand those in our communities more? Would those who have no-one to listen to them in their lives, start to feel heard?
I’m not professing to have any answers. All I seem to have is questions at the moment! Yet the questions I’m asking myself are helping me to explore things in a bit more depth. The questions others are asking me, are also allowing me to dig deeper and understand the world I live in a bit more.
Why is it important to understand? To listen? I believe if we don’t listen to ourselves, or to others we go off down a path which isn’t quite right for us. I’ve done it before, not followed my intuition. Yes, I learnt a lot on those journeys, but wouldn’t it be more beneficial, less time consuming if we followed our intuition and listened to ourselves more?
When you listen to yourself you’ll uncover some new ideas. Some ideas you may have had years ago and put away until the time was right and promptly forgotten them! That’s what I’ve uncovered these past few weeks of reflection in my own business and life.
When you share your story with others, and they ask you questions as they’re interested to know more, it helps you to shape your ideas. Friends, strangers, coaches and business partners can all help you to fine tune the ideas which have popped into your head, without you needing to spend a lot of time or energy on developing a new business plan. Simply sharing with others helps you hear others opinions and they’ll help you explore if the idea is a good one, or the challenges you may face from how they see it through there eyes.
Being kind doesn’t cost anything
Being kind doesn’t cost anything. It usually doesn’t take any extra time either. Yet, I hear stories of people saying that they found it unusual when they were shown kindness.
How about we switch that around? That being kind is normal, and what we expect from everyone in our lives and our communities.
As the UK enters another tricky week of discussions about Brexit, what if politicians listened to their constituents and shared kindness to one another to listen to the views of others. Actually listened. What would that do for the conversations we had in our families, in our social networks and in the media? Whatever the results of parliamentary votes, if we all treated each other with kindness would we feel like we were making progress in our country?
As you can see, I’m exploring so many ideas at the moment, but they come back to listening and kindness. These are at the heart of all my work, my life and my passions, so I have to explore them each and every day. I’d love to hear what your thoughts are on kindness. Also what you’re exploring at the moment. Are you asking big questions, or being challenged by others or outside forces to look at things in a new way?
If you need help listening to yourself and your ideas, please feel free to book a free 20 minute explore call. I love listening to you, and hearing where you’re up to and what you’re looking to explore next.
” I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. “Maya Angelou
There’s been a lot of focus on being strong this International Women’s Day, but not much mention of how to become strong. On my run/walk this morning I was thinking about how our bodies become stronger when we do our stretches after exercise, and depending what activities you do, often before you train as well.
That got me thinking about being comfortable and stretching ourselves each day, each week and month. Whilst many of the business owners I work with talk about their goals, they are often simply about doing the everyday. What if we focused on the stretch goals, rather than just getting through the week in one piece? What if we spent our time planning what we’d love to be doing, rather than what we “should” be doing? Would it make a difference?
Yes it would!
Stretching yourself to learn and grow
Just like any one of us wanting our body to be stronger and stretching ourselves to increase our strength through exercise, the same can be done for the rest of our life, business and mission. As a sports coach or physiotherapist (or whoever supports you to get physically stronger), will give you different exercises to do, with different intensity. So you can challenge yourself with adding in a different way of doing something, a new “exercise”, or new “intensity” on a particular focus to train yourself to be stronger.
It’s not just about willpower. I think it’s about growing yourself. Just like in a wheel, if you’re strengthening one aspect it will have a knock on effect on the other parts of your life. It’s not just about balance, I believe this is about learning and growth.
I’ve just started listening to Michelle Obama’s book, Becoming. She talks about every small thing which has made her who she is today. All those childhood experiences taught her to be who she is and to become the amazing woman she is. She inspires others to become themselves and work for the greater good. I’m only on chapter 2, but it’s fascinating having an insight into her world.
The word strong conjures up weight lifters, and people who’ve turned their lives around from circumstances many of us don’t recognise. That’s not always helpful is it? It’s too far removed from our daily life. So what if you thought about a little stretching this week? A stretch here and there to start to strengthen yourself and your business, in whichever way feels right for you this week.
Doing the same things week in week out may pay the bills, but is that what you really want to do for the next few years? Or are you looking to more than pay the bills in the future?
Grow your business in 90 days
Starting 1st April is my first 90 Day Grow your Business group programme.
- Join weekly group calls for the group of up to 5 business owners or managers, you’ll be flexing and stretching every muscle of your business.
- Spend time looking at your business through the eyes of other business owners and see the opportunities for quick wins and growth.
- Focus on developing stretch goals, and taking action for you and your business with the support of your cheerleading team.
It requires your time and commitment each week to make the most of the training, support and coaching you’ll get on the programme.
If you’re ready to stretch yourself and Grow your Business, get more clients, earn more money, and enjoy your business more, then get in touch and let’s check this programme is for you. There’s only 5 places available. If you’re interested but the timing isn’t right just now, still get in touch and let’s see what steps you can put in place whilst you’re waiting for the next programme to start.
What do you do to stretch yourself? Leave a comment below so we can learn from you.
“Musicians must make music, artists must paint, poets must write if they are ultimately to be at peace with themselves. What humans can be, they must be” Abraham Maslow
Musicians must make music. Being yourself is the kindest gift you can give to you
Just like the bulbs know what they must do, and push through the soil to reach the air and sun, (and rain), so we must be who we are. If you ever find yourself fighting against an urge to do something, how does it feel? It’s often harder to not do something that to just “go with the flow” and do it isn’t it?
I believe that’s where we must keep listening to ourselves and being ourselves. In business as well as in life.
When my eldest son wasn’t able to train as usual due to an injury he wasn’t ‘himself’. He knew he was healing, but he couldn’t settle to anything. He wasn’t being his true self.
Just like dogs and children need to run around and have fun daily (well, at least twice a day), and if they don’t they’re grumpy, or over excited. They have to do the things that are natural to them otherwise they aren’t themselves and can become vicious (over playful), in the case of dogs, or go on a rampage if it’s a toddler!
Being yourself. It’s what you were made to do
You may know that if you don’t do something you’re not yourself. A friend recently admitted that she’d stopped running as she couldn’t fit it in to her busy life, but it was detrimental to her health. She wasn’t happy. I know that if I don’t go for a walk in the fresh air each day I don’t function at my best. Sometimes my family virtually kick me out the door as I’m snappy with them when I haven’t had my time outside.
I’ll always remember my brother’s story. He went to University to do Classics, but within the first term had changed to his first love, Music. Music runs through his veins and he couldn’t NOT do it. Music is his life.
Whilst we can often see how people’s loves and deep desires come out to play and are truly them if they are musical, sporty, or artistic, it’s not always totally clear to you if you’ve hidden your true talents away. You may have been told as a child that your “speciality” wouldn’t ever earn you an income. Or you “weren’t good enough” to do something professionally, as there’s “only a few” professional tennis players who “make it”, for example.
But what if you were to start focusing on your deep desires again. Your true talent. Whatever it is – helping others, caring for others, creating solutions for people, illustrating other people’s books, editing others words so that we can learn from them. If you’re not being you, not only are you likely to be unhappy, but the skills and talents you’ve been given will be hiding away.
I believe that all our collective skills and talents are needed in each community. Not only does your family need you, but there’s others around you who need your talents to help them in their life too.
If you’re not sure what you should be ‘doing’ or ‘being’, the Find your Why session will help you re-connect with your personal themes and help you re-capture some of your talents which you may have hidden away.
Be like the daffodils and push through the soil to do the things you were born to do. Lift your face to the sun and enjoy being you 🙂
“This session is really worth your time for both your business and personal life. In fact what TJ will get to, is what your personal strengths and traits are and how these can be incorporated into a successful business. TJ is an excellent listener, and this is essential to this session. You need to be prepared to ‘go deep,’ tell the stories you really want to tell and watch TJ bring out the main themes and characteristics to help you bring your core values into your work life.
If you feel like you want your business to be a reflection of you, I would advise you invest in the time with TJ and watch how things develop. We have lots of future plans now and I can’t wait to see how these unfold. Finding your ‘why’ with TJ will help motivate and inspire you.”
I’d love to hear your story of being yourself. Please do let me know if or how this resonates with you by leaving a comment below. If you’d like to explore ways to explore you
more, get in touch
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” Nothing happens unless something is moved ” Albert Einstein
“Nothing happens unless something is moved” Einstein
If you’ve recently had a break from work, or a change in your life or business, you’ll know this quote to be true. I’ve enjoyed a few days off, with no technology and spending time doing different things. Some people may find my desire to declutter the garage a strange thing to do on my ‘holiday’, but it’s been brilliant for me.
I talked recently about being stuck, and that theme continued with different conversations with family and friends during the week. Our garage is a whole different ball game. Not only was it stuck, but it was causing a jam for the rest of the house!
It was a bit like those puzzles you get where you have only one free space to move things into to then move another piece. And you have to move all the pieces around to get the picture to look right on the puzzle.
The family have known for a while that we’ve needed to do something about it, and last week was the first opportunity we’d had to spend a good amount of time on moving things. It doesn’t do itself, does it. It needs our time and energy to put into it to make things happen.
For us it’s been great to have that dedicated time to move things, and do some de-cluttering. We’re not finished, but we’ve made a great start. And it feels so much better. Not only have we found things we thought were lost, but it’s been an opportunity to re-connect with friends we’ve not spoken to in a while and reminisce. We shouldn’t need an excuse to reach out to someone we enjoy spending time with, but we often feel like we do.
Not only have we moved things, and we’re able to create new spaces for new things in our garage, and our lives, but we’ve also had fun doing it. It’s a weight off our minds now we have more than one free space in the garage to move about in. And the de-cluttering part of throwing things away we no longer need has been liberating.
If you’re feeling a bit stuck, or not sure what your next step is as we move into the third month of the year, simply move something. As I explained to the Action Learning Set this morning, it doesn’t need to be anything big, or special. It’s simply just doing it that’s the important next step.
If you’d like help with taking your next step, or are unsure what that is for you, book a 20 minute free explore call, and let’s work it out together.
“Building a business can be lonely, isolating and frustrating. Being in a group where you cheer others and receive their support changes everything.” Laura, Dancing with Ease
“One of the happiest moments in life is when you find the courage to let go of what you cannot change”
This week there’s been a focus on love, friendship and relationships, including the relationship with ourselves. It can be bittersweet for some as we remember relationships which are no longer part of our lives; people who are no longer with us. It can also highlight when we’re feeling alone in a situation or our life.
However busy you are, or how big your circle of friends, or networking groups online or offline, you can still feel alone. It can be a very dark place for some that sense of being by themselves. It can also be very reassuring. That you don’t need to rely on others to deal with life, business, challenges. You have everything you need to work things out for yourself. You may need to ask others for help or for particular skills, but you can work it out for yourself.
You cannot change a situation, but you can change your reaction and perception of it. That takes courage! Believe me, it can take a long time to believe enough in yourself to make a decision about something that is very important to you. You can work yourself up into all sorts of states about one thing, (and in my personal experience it’s a small thing that I blow up into something massive), when it really doesn’t deserve that energy or attention.
When you listen to yourself what do you usually hear? Are the mind monkeys shouting loudly that you can’t do something, that it’s all wrong, or doom is just round the corner? Or can you hear that little voice in a whisper, saying “it’s OK! We are where we are, it’s only x, and it’s just one part of my life/business. There’s a way to sort it”. If you allow yourself, I bet the whisper is there 😉
Letting go of things we cannot change
We all love to look back with the benefit of hindsight don’t we? “If only I’d…”, “if this hadn’t happened then…” and so many other phrases we use, and hear others using. But we can’t go back. We can’t change things that have already happened. We can change how we view them, and we can certainly change how we move forward.
It does take courage to let go of what we can’t change, which includes people in our lives. Taking the brave step to listen to yourself, rather than rely on other people’s ideas and solutions, is very liberating. Just like with time – you only have 24 hours a day, you can only do what you can do. You can take action on some things, but have to allow those which others are responsible for to take their course.
You can make plans and contingency plans for situations which may happen. They’re yours to put in place. Whilst we love to put the blame, guilt and shame on someone else, or a situation that’s happened, until we have the courage to say, “I let go of what I cannot change”, we will feel lonely. We’ll feel stuck.
Being stuck in a rut can be very lonely can’t it? You feel that no-one understands you, your situation and certainly no-one can help you. I know, I’ve been there lots of times. Even these last few weeks I’ve felt a bit stuck. There’s been some things which weren’t working for me, yet I wasn’t listening to myself or allowing myself to move from my little rut. In some ways being in a rut is comforting. You know where you are! It took a few conversations with some good friends who reminded me to listen to myself. It was that simple. Hard, but simple.
I’ve no idea why listening to yourself is so hard. Maybe we don’t trust ourselves? Or if we only ever listen to other people we have the fall guy already set up to take the blame when something doesn’t go to plan. It doesn’t matter does it?
So as you start a new week, 8 weeks into the new year, I encourage you to let go of things you can’t change & focus your attention on the things you can. It doesn’t matter that you’re not on track, or haven’t quite done “that thing” you’d wanted to. You can do it now, this week, or sometime in the future.
In life and business, listen to yourself. Trust your instinct and intuition and take the action which you hear whispered in your ear. It may not be easy at first, but once you trust yourself to listen, the whispers get louder and the mind monkeys start to get a bit quieter.
If you feel lonely in your business, remember that you’re not alone. I started the Business Cheerleading Club to support people like you. Please don’t be alone with worries, concerns and your mind monkeys. Let others help you to listen to yourself and move forward in your life and business.
“Building a business can be lonely, isolating and frustrating. Being in a group where you cheer others and receive their support changes everything.” Laura, Dancing with Ease.
I’d welcome your thoughts on courage, listening and moving forward. Leave a comment below, or get in touch
“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world” Nelson Mandela
I spent last week educating people, one by one, about how to fit and wear a bra. It was definitely powerful, and I even had people using the words “life changing“, in what they’d learnt from me, and the Bra Lady team.
Sometimes we don’t think what we’re doing is important. Or that if we’re “only” helping one person that it’s not enough, so we won’t bother. Why do we do that? If you’ve had children, you’ll know that you can spend hours helping a child to learn one small thing. Or watching them learn – to walk, to use a crayon, learn to read, ride a bike. We wouldn’t NOT spend time with them to help them with that development step would we? We want them to learn.
The bra fitters from Bra Lady team felt exhilarated with each person they educated. They talked about the ripple effect – if we educate one person, they’ll talk to someone else, who’ll tell another person what they’ve learnt. We will never quite know the impact of our work last week. All we know is that we’ve affected the individual lives of 100’s of women, which we know will in turn ripple out to 1000’s more in time.
Remember the saying, “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime”? Each person you educate, or share some of your knowledge with will be impacted in some way to make a difference in their life and possibly the lives of others.
It can be hard when you’re running a business to see the impact you’re having on other people. They may buy a product or service from you. They may tell other people about your product or service. They may never tell you how much they’ve benefited from you. But they have. We usually hear from disgruntled people, rather than happy ones!
So if you’re struggling to see the impact you’re making, remember that you are – one person at a time. Keep educating your target customers, and be consistently available to talk to them about the benefits of your product or service, and they’ll come to you when they’re ready. Sometimes it’s that consistency which will have the biggest impact on others. Just by “being there” is the support that some people need in their lives.
How do you educate others day by day? Do you think of what you do as educating? Could you share more knowledge so people can learn more from you and understand you, your product and/or service more? Customers are usually those who know, like and trust you and the brand, and the product. How are you helping them to know, like and trust you each week?
If you need help with this aspect of growing your business, book a free 20 minute explore call and let’s work it out together.