If there was one lesson 2020 taught us, and even more so now as we face another period of uncertainty, it’s the importance of being present.
Like you, we run our own business.
And, like a lot of you, we are a family / husband & wife team.
Add in the mix of a virtual team, adjusted ways of working, and kids who need home-schooling, it’s all quite overwhelming and feels like a juggling act.
The challenge is, there’s no such thing as multi-tasking.
Let me say that again…there’s no such thing as multi-tasking and you can only land one plane at a time.
So, how do you go about this without working 24/7, getting stressed and overwhelmed?
There’s no easy answer, but one that has made a massive difference to us, is that of being present. Whether I’m working on the business, in the business or being head of IT for the kids home-schooling platform, I make sure I’m only focusing on that one thing. For example:
I helped Nigel Botterill with a ten-hour virtual Mastermind last week, all via Zoom. I explained to everyone at home, and to our Slack Community, that I’d be ‘out’ for the day, which meant I could focus 100% on listening, challenging and providing as much value to those business owners in that ‘room’.
When I’m focussing on Money Future activities (i.e., developing the business for tomorrow), I set aside specific time and focus on one area that will move our business from A to B to reach our future goals.
If I’m helping the kids build a Trojan Horse out of toilet rolls as part of their home schooling, I’ll make sure I’m putting all of my attention into that and not checking my emails in between taping and cutting.
When I’m focussing on Money Now – activities that drive our revenue today – I have allocated slots in my diary that our clients can access and book, and I focus all my energies on those calls safe in the knowledge that I’m not distracted elsewhere.
When we have our family meals, I’ll make sure I am 100% present and not distracted by the football results on my phone (this is helped by the kids reminding us of “no devices at the table”!).
Today is a gift and that’s why it is called the present….
Being present – being aware – can mean many things, it’s not just about being in the same room. Here’s some ways to help you, and those around you, be present in your business:
- Become aware of how you impact others, as well as how you’re impacted by others.
- Create the right environment including a culture and process for open, honest feedback.
- Start listening, stop telling. Telling leaves people feeling you’ve given them all of your burdens but taken none of theirs off their shoulders.
- Replace bad habits with positive ones (by bad habits I mean procrastination, not letting go, not making decisions, getting distracted by shiny new things…).
- Stimulate conversations with questions to engage others and allow your team the opportunity to challenge and learn.
- Communicate to your team on a regular basis how you expect them to think, act and behave.
- Finally, give yourself a break and be kind to yourself! You’re only human and right now a lot is being asked of you.
Understanding and executing these will help deliver the results without the stress or burden of being stuck in an environment of chaos.
This week, do some honest reflection – how present have you really been up to now? What can you stop doing / do more of to be present?
Investor | Business Mentor at Advocate | Author of I don’t work Fridays