This is an encouragement to anyone out there who is living their dream but not seeing the results just yet.
Perseverance is one of those things that you learn (like faith) through being stretched and then you grow in it. Like muscles in a gym. The more you work, the more resilient and the stronger you get.
No one getting started in business expects that learning to persevere will be so important. The biggest risk you think you are taking is starting the business in the first place, but it can be an even bigger risk to keep going! Scaling always demands more perseverance and more stretching.
I’ve sat opposite many an entrepreneur with the same expression on their face, ie., no one told me it was going to be this difficult!
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Reading a book, watching a movie, or being inspired by a talk gets you started but it won’t keep you. To stay the course you need to find champions that can encourage you along the way. I’ve shared many a time about the five people in your life (using the analogy of a hand) who will give you the support you need.
- Thumb – Someone you know, like and trust, a friend above all
- Forefinger – A visionary, someone who gives you direction and shows you the way
- Middle finger – This person is a super-connector and a networker
- Ring finger – Your partner, spouse or family member who knows you well
- Pinky – A mentor who is older than you
If you don’t have someone in each of these roles as you are getting started in business, why not consider who they might be? When you have filled these five roles in your life, that’s your support network, your inner circle, the people who actively inspire you to get the job done. Now, how about the people who help you to get the job done? I believe there are two other kinds of people you need to complete the set!
I see these different groups of people as hearts, minds and hands.
- Hands are taken care of, so let’s look at hearts and minds.
There is a power in the collective. There is more power in a meeting of minds than there is in just one. Who are the minds that are aligned with what you are trying to achieve? Do you have a community? A tribe or a place where you belong? There are people out there who are on the same journey as you, and they are willing to inspire, share, and help, at different stages.
You have your inner circle now, so what about your tribe?
Simply put, you need a tribe. For me, HUM4NS is one such tribe. Full of entrepreneurs, owners and leaders looking to impact the world and make it a better place. HUM4NS is all about being happier, healthier, smarter and kinder and not losing yourself along the way. We meet every 3rd Monday of the month at The Square Club in Bristol where we have two 10-minute talks to inspire us on our journeys since the last time we met.
It is free to attend and even in running it, I am inspired beyond the reading of books, podcasts etc. The gritty talks are the entry point but the tribe is the momentum changer!
You need to be part of a meeting of minds. Now onto the last one.
You. You are a massive part of the journey.
We are always being encouraged to look outward but we need to make sure that we are in touch with ourselves. I used to be a ‘me, myself and I’ person back in the day, chasing money at all costs, and I lost myself. It is not uncommon in this journey! Change often comes to keep us away from that cycle. In tougher times, money is a big deal but focussing on it alone can mean you’ll miss the bigger deals – you’ll come across as desperate!
Stay connected to what is in your heart. It is about conviction. Life will always throw circumstances at us to persuade us to take the easy way out and look for comfort. The thing is that impact-led people are compelled to embrace difficulties! They know that there will be a reward.
So, try to stay connected to your heart. Don’t lose YOU.
Personally, what keeps me connected is a quiet time in the morning, the time I read the Bible, meditate and pray for wisdom.
In the quest to do your best, hope helps! Never lose sight of hope.
There are things that fuel hope and faith. For me, it’s church and the additional insight of my pastor who also helps me. If you are on a quest to ‘boldly go’, Spock will take you so far, but you need Kirk’s heart to help you to go further. You need faith to go beyond.
So, mediate, read, walk in nature, get quiet to hear what is in your heart. It is in that place I believe God speaks. Some call it intuition, but in reality, when you know it, you just know. Listen to that voice.
Nearly twenty three years have passed since I started to pay attention to that inner voice. I married Clare, my wife of 22 years, as I just knew that we were on the same journey. And, when I think of people that have a heart like mine, my wife Clare is someone who lives and leads in the same way. In tough times she always reminds me of why, and who WE are and she stirs up vision.
As I step out to head to the US on an LSD trip, (Look, See, Discover) for 10 days, on my own, I know that it is part of the journey. I’ll miss my family, but I know I am following the vision to create global impact.
I’m so grateful that I have hands to help in my absence, minds to inspire me as I’m getting started in new business ventures and hearts joined with me while I’m away.