Nov 192008

Dr. Earl R. Smith II

I enjoy my life coaching engagements because often they result in life-changing realizations. Many of my clients have had the experience of the light finally going on. Some of these epiphanies have involved a realization of the work that they should be doing or the kind of company that they should be running. I have helped clients who started out in the ‘tech’ space end up running companies as diverse as wine tourism, international charities and jewelry design and manufacture. The common theme is that they all left lives that they had fallen into for live that they choose – lives that matched their temperament, skills and passions.

Every business owner, large or small, has a dream of grand success and happiness. Many times this is what got them started. A few make it and prosper; many more fail. Only one in ten new businesses makes it to their fifth anniversary. This sad statistic leaves is daunting – it prevents people from starting a business.

When I ask successful business owners what the secret of their success is, they often reply that is involved finding something that they really wanted to do and were good at. This focus on personal happiness and a good fit between capabilities and the demands of their company redefined their definition of success. Following their example, here are a few tips to help guide you on your path to business success.

Tip #1: What is the definition of what YOUR joy and YOUR success? When we were children, we strove to live up to our parents expectations for us. We then spent all of our teen years rebelling against it. As funny or true to our lives as it sounds, we need to go through our ‘teen years’ again with our business.

Often business owners go through a stage of feeling dissatisfied with how their business is doing and what is occurring in their lives. We pull out someone else’s measuring tape rather than reaching for our own. We are using another’s desires, hopes, dreams and goals and trying to fit our business into that mold.

To find out what your definitions of joy and success are will take some personal growth and perhaps some soul searching along the way. A difficult process to undertake but well worth the effort as it will apply to more than just your business, it may change your whole life perspective. An executive life coach or a personal coach could prove to be a faster route to finding out what your definitions are. However, what ever the path to your enlightenment is make sure that the drummer you are listening to is your own.

Tip #2: Take the proverbial time to smell the roses. All too often, we find ourselves so caught up in our work we do not realize it is doing more harm than good. Make sure that not only are you taking a food break during the day but a ‘fun break’ as well. Our brains hunger for a change in thought process, kind of like changing up what snack we get from the machine so we are not eating the same thing all the time. This allows our brain to reboot and become aware of details we are overlooking. Do those Sudoku puzzles, crosswords, read a chapter of a book or squeeze in a little minesweeper for ten minutes a day.

Tip #3: Create a list of things you are fond doing. Sort through the list and establish what you can do even in a fifteen-minute window of your day. Hard to believe but this simple act of discovering what you enjoy doing can reflect on how you live your life. We strive long and hard to accomplish our previous definition of success and joy that we need to rebuild it. Plan what you want to do on the next day off from work. These simple acts make our brain have a goal to work towards when it is tackling the issues at hand.

When we make these adjustments and determine a balance of work and pleasure, we suddenly realize that there is a world beyond the rat race. We rise above the others and they see you in a different way and long for the same success.

Life coaching can change your life – it can help you set out on and make the journey that you were made to take. If you want to learn more about the possibilities, send me an e-mail and we will arrange a time to talk.

© Dr. Earl R. Smith II

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