Most small business owners go into business for themselves to do what they love, what I’ll call ‘The Big WHY.’ For transformational entrepreneurs, this is always about making a difference, and being of service to a group of people in a powerful way. Along the way, the stresses of actually running a business, as opposed to doing what you love as a hobby, can make you shake your head, roll your eyes towards the heavens, and say ‘Why am I doing this?’
To be more effective, and take back your power in a situation like this, we’ll actually look at another commitment – marriage – to learn new ways to think about business.
When you get married, you’re in love (usually). Everything is rosy, and although you may give lip service to ‘good times and bad’ you probably thought that YOUR relationship would be different. A few years or decades in, if you’re still in it, the love may still be there, but there is a lot more work than you ever anticipated. The stresses of life have caused you to change how you interact with your partner, and you need to find new powerful ways to stay connected and keep the love intact.
If someone said about marriage ‘But I thought it would all be just like it was when we were dating!’ you would probably smile and think them a bit foolish.
Yet this is exactly the trap that so many business owners – especially transformational entrepreneurs – fall into. They think that because they are doing something they love, there shouldn’t be any struggles, any fears, any extraordinary efforts required for success. (The problem is that most people beat themselves up, thinking that they are doing something wrong because things seem hard.)
Running a business does take work – lots of it – just like a good marriage does. It requires sacrifice, compromise, personal growth, acceptance, and much more. And just like you’re motivated to stay in your marriage because, despite the challenges, there’s an abiding love, in business you can use your original ‘Big WHY’ as an anchor to help you through those tough times.
To do that, though, you need to be very clear on your ‘Big WHY’.
So ask yourself:
What difference do I want to make in the world?
What do my gifts call me to do, even if I had millions in the bank?
In what way can I contribute to, and transform lives?
Get clear on that, type it up, and put it somewhere that you’ll see it every day. Remind yourself of your ‘Big WHY’ when the business tasks get stressful, and you’ll find serenity, power, and motivation that will skyrocket your results.