We work hard, I work hard, to be fair most of the driven thought leaders I’ve encountered, whether they like to admit it or not, are tireless in their pursuit of leaving a legacy or creating a positive shift using a gift they’ve discovered they have.
My happy place is when I’m either actively using my gifts or passing them on to others. This looks like, for me, either being in front of the camera, speaking to a large number of people or helping others to do the same in a way that’s incredibly connected, raw and authentic.
These moments are when I get to play, just like I did way back as a carefree child running around the grounds of the now redundant school in Otaio, South Canterbury, New Zealand. It’s the time that all the groundwork that has been put in comes to fruition when I can let go and focus on enjoying the experience. The more I get out of my own way, the more dynamic I become.
If I was to use a professional athlete as an example, the time, the real work goes into the preparation beforehand. I’ve heard a number of times the speed of my progress in Australia and Asia in 2017 is due to being the new kid or shiny object on the block. What’s being conveniently neglected in this observation is the huge hours of dedication I’ve put into my skills and self…
The decades of training under mentors and teachers, even on the days when I wanted to turn the car around through fear, fatigue or self-induced sabotage. The air miles I’ve traveled to take a punt on an idea or business relationship that’s shown up. The ‘too many to count’ failures that have continuously knocked me down, only for me to trust I have as much right to greatness as anyone else has and if I simply chase ‘excellence’ and not success, the rest will evidently follow. It also doesn’t take into account the insane amount of trust required to go with my gut when, around me, others are giving in to doubt, and even when locked away, writing in a cabin in the hills of Romania to trust that the feeling of going ‘mad’ was for the greater good of my purpose.
I’ve had more failures than wins, and that, in part, is my success. The more mature (I use this word loosely) I’m becoming the better my ability to fail fast is, the less I care about judgment and the more my teaching becomes aligned with my heart.
What we’re effectively doing as entrepreneurs, is creating opportunities for ourselves. Opportunities to fail, learn and of course, opportunities to play. The inevitable hard work beforehand has to have a payoff, doesn’t it? That could, as in many cases be financial, however, for myself, this is creating a space to play in. Whether I’m speaking on stage, behind or in front of a camera, my objective at this point is to have fun, to enjoy myself. The hard work has been done already, it’s now time to enjoy the fruits of this and when I do this, without a doubt it is reflected in my work. Again, just like a professional athlete, the game day is actually the time to express ourselves and enjoy the moment.
It’s fair to say that many entrepreneurs and business owners don’t allow themselves to actually enjoy the moment they’ve created. They allow the pressure of the occasion to create an environment that’s not conducive to enjoyment, and this ultimately reflects in their performance. This is meant to be when you shine when you step into your gift and allow others to enjoy what you’ve created. This also requires lowering the bar on our own expectations, otherwise, we’re setting ourselves up to fail.
Every single time I step into the space that I’ve created for myself through hard work and focus, my single most important intention is to enjoy the occasion and play. I set my intention, to be kind to myself, remember to play, to allow my inner child to shine. The benefits of this are shared, not only by me but my audience.
I often remind clients, step out of your own way, take the pressure to be perfect off. Lower the bar for yourself so it’s actually attainable, lower the bar so far it becomes your hula hoop instead of your hang mans noose. Enjoy the ride and trust that when you enjoy the occasion it’ll have an incredible ripple effect on your business.
The idea is to move faster than the speed of fear and remember, we’re all making this up as we go, day to day, hour to hour, and moment to moment.