Confession: I’m woo-woo. I admit it. Over the last nearly forty years I’ve read hundreds of spiritual books, attended enlightenment retreats, studied under amazing teachers with an incredibly high level of awareness and traveled the world in search of “enlightenment.”
At age thirty I headed to India in search of deep inner-knowing, but somehow ended up on the West Bank of Israel for six months. I suppose I should have paid more attention during Geography 101 in high school, but I digress.
I meditate on a regular basis, attend Sunday services at the International Center for Spiritual Living, rely on intuition in all areas of my life and believe adhering to clear spiritual principles allow me to live an abundantly, fulfilled life.
On a professional level, I’ve owned my current business for over 21 years. I’m recognized as a very logical business strategist who works with experts who want to write books, create information products and get on the platform to speak in order to have a positive impact on their market.
My most successful clients are those who likely have a very strong spiritual side, but they know they have to treat their business like a business to get the results they seek.
Over the years I’ve encountered countless wanna-be entrepreneurs who seriously believe all they have to do is think about what they want, meditate on it, affirm they are successful and the rest will take care of itself. Sadly for them, this is not how success happens.
Sure, having a clear vision of what you want and positive self talk definitely helps, but organizing yourself in a way that you can be as productive as possible must be factored into the equation.
As an entrepreneur you must do more than simply have a desire and meditate on that desire in order for your business to function at the highest level. You must also rely on logic, strategic planning and implementation to achieve the outcomes you desire. In other words, you have to treat your business like a business.
Treating your business like a business involves investing in training, mentors, software, support, keeping financial books and paying taxes. If you work with clients it’s essential to establish hours that they can depend on. If, on the other hand, you do not work directly with clients, it is possible to have incredibly flexible hours, but you do have to be organized in what you do during these hours.
There may be times you have to do things you are not necessarily inspired to do (like making follow up calls after a networking meeting or conference), yet the fact remains, inspired or not, the work needs to get done.
You may not always “feel” like doing something so you wait to be inspired before digging into the task.
I know how this is. I also know that if I wait to “feel” like doing the work, it will likely never get done. It’s easy to get caught up doing meaningless tasks that might make me believe I’m being productive, but if I’m not careful, before I know it another day has slipped by. Frustrated, I realize I’ve gotten no closer to the outcome I say I want.
Although it would be great to be inspired all the time, this is not realistic. There have been plenty of times I’ve not felt like doing something that absolutely had to be done. With no more than pure grit, I got into action because the taks had to be done. Simple as that. If I wait to be inspired, the “thing” would never get done.
I don’t know of any successful entrepreneur who has not had this experience. The distinction between the wanna-be entrepreneurs and those who are producing results is this; they worked through the lack of inspiration only to find that by taking the initial action, the inspiration shows up.
Believing we need only take action when we are inspired to do so is an erroneous belief that has prevented far too many potentially successful entrepreneurs from realizing what they are actually capable of.
Case in point; over the years, I’ve talked with thousands of people who say they want to write a book Rather than begin their writing they wait for inspiration to kick in before they begin. And they wait. And wait. And wait.
Years later, they are still waiting with nothing to show for their desire. The same holds true for those who want to create information products. An idea surfaces on what they are sure will be a huge success regarding a home study course, but they take no action to start, let alone complete the project.
“I’m waiting to be inspired,” they repeat time after time.
Then there are those who want to get on the platform and speak. Rather than seeking out speaking opportunities, they meditate on being discovered. Once they’re done meditating they fill their time checking their emails, watching a few short videos or reading the latest and greatest post on their Facebook wall.
I’ve got news for you; you will not be discovered by sitting behind your computer watching yet another cat trick video or seeing who’s doing what on Facebook.
You have to roll up your sleeves and do the footwork. Sure, you can do inspired footwork, but you must do the footwork nonetheless.
If you’re even slightly guilty of the “wait to be inspired” syndrome, here are a few things you can do to get to the other side of this.
- Determine what you want to accomplish over the long-term. Write this down.
- Break your big goal into smaller goals. Write these down.
- Write a daily to do list and refer to the list for your daily road map.
- Commit to doing something every day to achieve the outcome you seek.
- Get training as needed.
- Be realistic in your expectations.
- Outsource those things that you are not qualified to do. For example, if you have no idea how to set up landing pages, either learn how to do it or hire someone who can.
- Put accountability measures in place. Finding an accountability buddy helps…as long as your accountability buddy isn’t waiting to be inspired to do what they need to do.
- Hire a mentor who has a proven track record.
- Delegate those things you either shouldn’t or can’t do, but absolutely must get done.
One of the greatest roadblocks to success for entrepreneurs is trying to do everything themselves. By trying to wear all the hats they create a bottleneck in their business.
They are their own worst enemy when it comes to delegating. To save a few dollars they are actually missing untold opportunity. They keep busy with activities that take far too long for them to do when, in reality, if they had an outsourcing budget, the tasks would get done faster and they could focus on those things that they should be doing like working directly with clients, writing their book, speaking on the platform and enjoying the fruits of their labor.
What are you doing that is holding you back? Are you creating a bottleneck in your company by trying to do everything yourself? Are you waiting for inspiration to hit before taking action thus stopping you from realizing all you are capable of achieving?
Isn’t it time to treat your business like a business and become the entrepreneur you know you are capable of becoming?
Having a logical need not take away from your woo-woo side. If anything, it enhances your experience and gives you something amazing to meditate on.
How do you handle those times when you’re not inspired? Comments welcome.
Thank you for this terrific article. You can’t wait for inspiration but need to take action every day–and you have terrific action points here. People wonder how I have over 166,000 twitter followers. The reality is every day I work to grow my followers, I’m communicating with my target market almost every hour throughout the day–even on the weekends, Anyone can take the simple steps but they need to take them rather than read about them or think about them. Keep up the good work and I’ll do the same.
The Writing Life
Great perspective Terry. And the fact that you “walk your talk” is awesome.
Once again Kathleen, I think you are right on target with this! The end result is what usually inspires me and what I’ve come to realize is, that if I want the end result, then I must be willing to do what it takes to get it, plain and simple. An example is when I wanted my bedroom remodeled and painted. At the time I didn’t have the money to have someone else do the work. I love the painting part and I’m very good at it, however, there was a tremendous amount of prep work that had to be done before I could paint, if I wanted a professional-looking job. I was not inspired to do all the prep work and it took much longer than the actual painting itself. I kept putting it off until I was in the mood and inspired, but it never happened. What inspired me was to visualize the end result and how I would feel after it was done. When I found myself not being inspired to do the prep work, I would close my eyes and see my bedroom already finished – I would really feel the end result. There were days I wasn’t inspired, had to kick myself in the butt and just do it anyway. I also didn’t want to wait until the last minute to get it done because when I’m rushed, I don’t do an excellent job or have a good attitude. Sometimes I have to put my big girl panties on and stop being unhappy when things aren’t done!
You are so right about visualizing the end result. When we can see what we want, the process becomes simpler. Thanks for sharing.