“I have forgotten who I was when I first started in my business - that excited, energized, enthused woman full of creativity, fun, and love... What happened to her? Well.. she found some kind of ‘reality’... But now I don’t like it and I don’t think that ‘reality’ serves me anymore.”
“I hit too many failures. I mean.. After pouring all that time, money, and effort! I really should get something back don’t you think?”
“I am a powerhouse with my time and calendar - everyone loves that I can juggle and move things around and make things happen.. But there is always one person who never gets what she wants. Any guesses Sunil as to who that one person is?”
“I am dead scared straight. I quit my comfortable management position in a financial firm to strike out on my own. Now I spend more time in worry or deep fright than anything else. I even can see myself doing it and I cannot seem to stop. So I fill up my calendar with work that is meaningless… but what I think will get me out of this fear. Fear begets fear and my calendar has become a scary place.”
It is one thing to have structures, systems, strategies, and support to make more money.
But whatever happened to structures, systems, strategies, and support to make more time?
“You can spend all your time making money.
You can spend all your love making time.”
The Eagles “Take it to the Limit”
To have more time to love.
To have more time to live.
To have more time to be - To be Anything You Wish.
To have more time to dream - and to fulfill those dreams.
Where did the time go?
The fundamental mistakes most small business owners make.
Mistake #1: Most people, as they start their businesses, focus on making money. Not a bad thing to do. However, that is not the mistake - the mistake is that they stop focusing on their time as much. The result is usually burnout.
Mistake #2: They realize that usually around the end of year 1 or year 2. Then they make mistake#2.
They start focusing on how to manage their time. This takes the form of mathematical and logical manipulations - trying to prioritize, move things around to accommodate other things, work harder, push earlier in the morning, etc.
The result is usually burnout, but now the seeds of greater resignation, fear, frustration and guilt.
Mistake #3: Now, they listen to audiobooks or watch youtube videos that exhort them to systematize. Yes! Systematize! That must be the key! So they buy expensive things with all kinds of fancy acronyms that they even start brandishing with relish at their mastermind meetings - TMS, CRMs, POSs, SEO, ERP, KPIs, GID, BCPs etc. Then they also start hiring acronyms like DOOs (director of office operations), CFOs, COOs, CMOs, Project Leads, Marketing and Social Media Producers etc. But then they hit an impasse. They still are not getting what they want or need.
“With all these systems and all the money that I am making, you would think that I should be having a good and great time. But I feel like I am still undernourished and I am managing breakdowns that surprise the heck out of me. I feel like I built an engine that does not fit me and who I want to become.”
-A current client at the time of writing this article.
The source of the issue
The source of the issue was that they did not design a solution that fitted what they wanted.
The design of the systems and structures were done in response to a problem rather than what they actually wanted.
This is like designing a car in response to only needing to move from one place to another. So you get a go-cart.
In the absence of design, the things that you manifest tend to not only be a result of your unresolved or undistinguished past, but of unresolved or undistinguished subconsciousness.
The transformation vs. The change
Transformation is about a new paradigm - a design for your life that supersedes the thinking at which your current problems were created. So you could think of transformation as superior design.
What most people do is change (at best.) Change usually occurs in response to “something is wrong.” So you try to fix something, but you do not necessarily examine what you really want.
Most people fix their inability to have what they want, by changing their systems, people they hire, rules, policies, etc. Or they try to make it better, by working harder or faster or trying to optimize some variable.
But all change does is to change the form of your problem into something with a different shape but still has the same characteristics underlying it e.g. speaking metaphorically, you just changed the “shape” of your problem from a triangle to a square, but you did not make the design to match what you needed - what persists is that your problem still has a shape. The context of shape is maintained, although it looks different - but the context (fix my problem) is maintained. The breakthrough (transformation) occurs when you examine what you really want and design towards that, rather than just trying to fix the shape of the problem.
The first crucial step:
The million dollar question is almost always “Now.. what do I really want and am committed enough to make happen?”
Oftentimes, this is a very difficult and challenging question to answer.
But everytime, with every single one of my clients who did the work, the result is a very satisfying, fulfilling and profitable (breakthrough level) one.
“Not only did I get 8 more hours of free time per week, as promised, but I also had a 50% percent increase so far in income this year with a marked improvement in productivity. Also, I now charge about 50% more without any guilt because I know my value in the marketplace.
The qualitative breakthroughs are even more significant for me - confidence, presence, sticking to my higher priced offers and being able to negotiate calmly for what I believe is my talent and skills - this is valuable and I am very grateful.”
-Williford, founder and creative director.
Many of you are familiar with my favorite quote from Gloria Steinem - “The Truth will set you free, but first it will piss you off.”
The truth in this process of transformation will almost inevitably piss you off - that you have not really designed according to your specifications. “Duh!”
But discovering the truth of what you really want rarely pisses off anybody that I know.
It has the opposite effect - you start falling in love with yourself, the world and life itself.
That is the real gift of transformation.
My invitation to you is to grab that gift with both hands. It is your time to do so.
Sunil Bhaskaran (Speaker, Author, Mentor) takes delight in leading entrepreneurs to clarifying their purpose, sources of joy, systems, structures and strategies - so that all three of these engines work cohesively and powerfully to generate a business, life and vision that is fulfilling, satisfying and an example for all others to follow.
To reignite or ignite the transformation you know you deserve, and to discover how you can make this real in your own life and business, please schedule a time with him at no cost at www.MeetupChat.com.
Since 1991, I’ve been reflecting on, designing, and implementing methodologies and systems for bringing a transcendent, creative and innovative approach to critical aspects of entrepreneurship.