Going to work on your thinking…

The past three months in particular have been the biggest voyage in self-discovery. in November I started with the SFM, but before then I’d been searching for people and philosophies to align myself with, and learn from.

To be the best, learn from the best

A simple statement, but a truthful one. I’ve found myself coming back to this one a lot.

To be the best, learn from the best

To a world class tennis player, for example, getting to the top of your game is only going to be achievable if you’ve got an experienced world class player (and usually this will be an ex-champion) as your coach. Only someone like this will be able to truly understand what the pressures are, how to handle the media attention, the pressures on court, and the physical training, mindset, and techniques needed to make up a true champ. You can take UK’s Andy Murray, with Ivan Lendl as his coach, and Novak Djokovic, who lists Boris Becker among his coaching team, as two fine examples of this. These two guys are at the top of their game at the moment.

In business then, finding a top business coach, or coaching team is a way to be better at running your business, isn’t it? But how many small company owners are actually doing this?

The quest to get better

My quest initially was to get better at running my graphic design business. The last few years for me quite frankly had been very much of a ‘head-down, get the work done’ kind of approach. As a “solo-act”, you often have to be all jobs in the business: CEO, Finance Director, Worker, Tech Support, R&D, secretary… tea boy, and even the cleaner. The more my repertoire grew and the more diverse my offerings became in this increasingly online, and technically expanding, market, the more difficult fulfilling all these roles became.

Then I read: The E-Myth, Revisited, By Michael E. Gerber, and I realised that I had been doing many of those things wrong. The “E-Myth” in the title, is the assumption that by understanding and doing the technical work of a business, that you automatically can successfully run a business.

It’s a great book, and if you’re the owner of a small business, and are still wondering why you are working stupidly long hours doing all of the jobs within the company, then you need to read this book. My favourite Gerber quote is this:

“If your business depends on you, you don’t own a business—you have a job. And it’s the worst job in the world because you’re working for a lunatic!”

Michael E. Gerber, The E-Myth Revisited

Work on your business, not in it

So – lesson learned No.1 is this:

I have to imagine a future where my business continues to run, but without me in it. Otherwise, at best, I just have a job.

Gerber puts it quite plainly:

“Once you recognise that the purpose of your life is not to serve your business, but that primary purpose of your business is to serve your life, you can then go to work on your business, rather than in it, with a full understanding of why it is absolutely necessary for you to do so.”

Michael E. Gerber, The E-Myth Revisited

Lifestyle Creatives then, is the beginnings of a new business venture, that is building a future around my life and my goals. I’ve sought the guidance of the best coaches and mentors I can find, who are giving me the tools to help me build up an online business and giving me the support I need, the mindset coaching, the knowledge and training, and the business skills to succeed.

Going to work on your thinking, is merely the first step to changing your life. There’s lots to learn.

My journey’s only just started, but it’s an exciting one.

Stay creative.