You Can't Go Faster
With Your Foot On The Brakes
"There's this perception that if you worry a lot
and if you look really busy and stressed out
then you'll be more successful.
You talk about how little sleep you get
and how tense you are
and how you're not getting the appreciation you deserve
and how hard you're working.
You think this is somehow
feeding into your success and your career,
and that's just not true.
Any success that you have in your career
is despite your being all bothered and annoyed and stressed out
— not because of it."
Nancy Mayer of 'Newhouse News Service'
Many small business owners want to get more clients, make more money, work less, and be less stressed with their business and life. And they already feel stretched to the limit.
Does this sound familiar?
In addition to running your business, working with your clients, managing your assistants or staff, marketing, planning, and handling much of the day-to-day administration of your company, you may also be writing books and newsletters, creating information products, being interviewed on radio and TV, and running seminars and workshops, as well as wanting to have a fulfilling personal and family life outside of your work.
Working harder is not the answer.
Whether you have an overwhelming schedule crammed with obligations or activities, a stack of unfinished projects, piles of papers covering your desk, jam-packed filing cabinets or drawers or attics, people who are less than supportive of you, clients that are not ideal, thoughts of worry or stress that crowd your mind, ‘shoulds’ and obligations and overwhelm, cluttered closets, and saying ‘yes, yes, yes’ to too many others instead of yourself - all of this “stuff” is clutter, and your clutter is getting in the way of what you want.
In fact, your clutter is actually preventing you from being as successful and fulfilled as you’d like.
When you have clutter of any kind in your life, it’s like driving a car with one foot on the gas and one foot on the brake (at the same time!) while you’re trying to go faster and faster. If you’ve got your foot on the brake, no matter how hard you keep pushing on the gas, your car will not move forward very well. Your car will also break down pretty quickly!
Do any of these sound familiar? (hint: these are all forms of clutter)
- You have a hard time saying ‘no’ to requests people make of you.
- No one can do what you need done as well as you can, so you just do it yourself.
- You react to what comes at you every day, rather than consciously deciding how your day will go.
- You don’t think you can ask for more money. Your clients already resist paying your fees.
- Your desk is stacked high with piles that stress you out.
- You have clients who drain your energy, complain, and don’t pay your fees.
- You’re in a relationship, friendship, or partnership (business or personal) that isn’t working, and it’s causing you stress and frustration.
- You believe that if you work less than you do now, you’ll make less money.
- Most of your day is spent responding to email, phone calls, and emergencies, as well as handling interruptions.
Most business owners have no idea how much their clutter – physical clutter, time clutter, relationship clutter, and mental, emotional, and spiritual clutter – is affecting not only their day-to-day life, but is also directly and dramatically affecting the success of their business, their health, their relationships, and their ability to be the kind of person they want to be in the world.
Rather than wearing yourself out by working harder and harder (and still not seeing the kind of results you want), it’s so much easier to gently take your foot off the brakes and start accomplishing much more of what you want, with a lot less effort.