It’s been a huge experiment and I’ve learned a lot.
Here’s what I’ve learned that I think will help, and reassure you, as a business owner and leader.
The lessons go way beyond what I’ve learned as a writer. A lot of them impact how we can own and manage businesses.
Lesson #1: New Habits Are Hard
The big thing I’ve found is that new habits are hard. We know this from our reading. We know this from life experience.
Humans are wired to, essentially, do the same things and stay in our comfort zones.
New habit creation requires a rewiring of our brains. And it’s hard. We want to go back to what we did before.
While some studies say it takes 21 days to create a new study, citing what some call a misquoted study, I’m finding it’s harder for me.
This new habit still isn’t fully engrained at day 29 (when I am writing the first draft of this article).
This is a powerful lesson for changing ourselves and our teams. We have to allow time – and energy – for change.
Lesson #2: Sometimes Work Is Thankless
Much of my writing time has been thankless. Very thankless.
Sitting alone in a room typing. Writing down notes as I go from place to place. Opening my laptop on the plane while others are sleeping.
Every step of doing this is thankless. There is no one there cheering me on.
I do it because I know it is good for me. Writing makes me a better business leader.
I am doing something important for my development. Every article I write forces me to think deeper. That, in turn, makes me a better speaker, consultant and author.
I’m doing the reps to get even better at the craft of writing.
It’s a win for my future each time I complete an article. But no one there to thank me.
And it makes me think of some of our employees. Maybe they too are doing important things and aren’t getting the thank yous. It might be time to just let them know how much they are appreciated.
Lesson #3: Sometimes There Are Unexpected Rewards
And while there are no thank you’s from day-to-day there are rewards along the way.
Some articles get good view numbers and that let’s me know people benefitted from my work even if I get little to no payment from it.
Sometimes folks read my article and join my email list. They’ll join my community so we can do more together. Some will even respond to the emails I sent out and our relationship will deepen.
And sometimes an article opens a conversation on the path to a new client.
The rewards come. There aren’t a lot of Thank Yous and nothing is guaranteed but the results happen.
It’s a good reminder of our crafts. We don’t know what doing the right thing in business today might mean about tomorrow. But every time we do do the right thing it plants the seed for good things to happen tomorrow.
Lesson #4: The Long Road Is…Well… Long
And all of this means the road is long. There are very few things we can do in business today that will change our business in 30 days.
I know a lot of internet marketers promise that. But when you get into their work they usually get surface gains in 30 days. What really happens in the first 30 days is the foundation for the future.
So the road is a long. A lot of good has come from my 30 days or writing every day. I know more good will come in the next thankless 30 days.
I don’t know what will happen when. But I know I am moving to my destination.
And sometimes that confidence we are pointed in the right direction makes all of the difference.
Lesson #5: Waiting For The Big Breaks
I want to write for bigger publications so I can impact more people. My position of being a business owner that gets to help so many other business owners with their business plans puts me in a very unique setting.
I know I can impact more people and help them have the results they desire.
I am still waiting to make that connection with Forbes, Business Insider, Fox Business or a local station in Orlando, Florida, Jacksonville, Florida or Dallas, Texas.
The writing I am doing is working. It’s helping people and letting people know what I can do for them. It’s getting me leads.
But I know it’s not what it will be in the future.
And sometimes in our businesses we have to know that. We are waiting for the breaks.
I often remember reading about Bruce Springsteen begging to play in small bars in New Jersey as he waited for his big break. It happens to all of us.
It’s hard for us as business leaders to wait for this. It’s even harder for those working for us. It’s another great opportunity for discussion and reassurance.
What To Do Next
If you are thinking about doing something big, get started. What can you do – everyday – to move you closer to that goal?
What support systems do you need?
I’ve learned a lot by focusing on one process that leads me to my bigger goals. I bet the same is out there for you too. And I bet it will feel amazing to start making progress.
LET’S DO MORE: If you are a business owner or leader let’s be in touch more. I’d love for you to read my online work and give me your honest feedback: join my mailing list, follow me on LinkedIn and jump into my Facebook Group.
NOTE: This article is a piece develop a small portion of the content of the book tentatively called The Journey: Finding Your Place From Entrepreneur to CEO being co-authored by The Our Shawn McBride and Ann Gatty. If you want updates on the book including the possibility of joining our release team or getting one of the first copies please join our mailing list here.
DISCLAIMER: This article talks about legal issues. I am a lawyer licensed in multiple US jurisdictions, but I am not your lawyer unless we have signed an engagement agreement. Please view this material as educational and general in nature (as it is). Consult counsel you have retained for advice on your specific facts and circumstances and applicable laws. Do not rely on the statements in this article as legal advice.
By: The Our Shawn McBride, is the business nerd and long-time business attorney that focuses on changes of ownership in businesses. He works with business owners that know their business is about more than themselves to get ready for their future through keynotes, training and personalized solutions. In furtherance of this he hosts The Future Done Right(TM) Show where he collects, digests and gives lessons and insights on The Future of Business. If you want regular content on the future of business subscribe to get new blog posts from us here.
You’ll quickly notice his unusual suits which he uses open the conversation of how businesses should Do Business Differently™.
The Our Shawn is based in DeLand, Florida (between Orlando, Florida and Daytona Beach, Florida) and Dallas, Texas where he keeps offices. You can also find Shawn on webinars or traveling nationally or internationally for speaking engagements.
Check me out at: www.planningdoneright.com
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