Pausing the soundtrack of struggle
“When is this effort going to pay off?” Georgia snuffled into her hanky. She was exhausted, frustrated, and worn out.
My eyebrows shot up and nearly jumped off my face. Here was a successful entrepreneur who had turned a one-person beauty salon into a thriving hub of ten staff over the last decade.
I told her she was asking the wrong question, and that a better one was “When do I get to celebrate my success?” Then I pulled my eyebrows back together and offered that piercing look of truth that only a coach or your mother can achieve.
Georgia had been so busy looking ahead at the next milestone she hadn’t paused to reflect on what was beneath her feet. Business was a constant struggle to overcome one challenge after another. It was relentless.
But there was no way I was going to let her get away with playing the victim and sacrificing all that effort for a ‘Woe is me’ theme song, so I followed up with, “Tell me, Georgia, what has your business allowed you to do, pay for and buy over these last ten years?”
The snuffling stopped as the mental gears ground to a halt and shifted out of the old rusty slot into a new one. Then, slowly, Georgia started to tell me how the business had allowed her to buy a house, pay for her very sexy BMW, fund her children’s private education, take weekends off, go on holidays, support ten families, service thousands of clients who loved her and the results she brought them… and more.
"Success is what happens when we’re busy making new goals."
Success is what happens when we’re busy making new goals.
Want more articles like this? Check out the business psychology section.
I find it useful to remember that my business is actually an intimate, deeply personal relationship, and I need to treat it as one. As soloists we sometimes forget this and fall into the trap of thinking that we ARE the business.
You might be the creative force that produces the vision, the process, and the results, but really, you’re just the vehicle that allows the creative flow of Source (call it God, the Universe, energy – what you will) to be manifest.
Much like your children, once its born, your business takes on a life of its own. Your job is to nurture it.
And you would never tell your child, “When are you going to pay off?”
At least, not on a good day.
The pay off for soloists is the process of creating, of giving value, of helping others, of doing your thing in an authentic way in the world, with freedom and autonomy.
If you look carefully you’ll see your business, (let’s call her Betty), has done more than that too. She’s paid bills, she’s supported you, she’s bought office furniture and a computer, paid suppliers, and maybe funded a business lunch or two with colleagues.
So my soloist friends, press ‘pause’ on whatever soundtrack of struggle you’ve been playing and write some new background vocals. Ones that celebrate all that Betty Business has enabled you to experience.
Please join the chorus below and tell us what you’re thankful to your business for. (Here at FSHQ we’re thankful it’s introduced us to all of you!)