I’ve done it sixteen times before, so you wouldn’t think it was any big deal. Moving that is. This week, as my family and I pack up our things and move from our home of ten years into a new home and community, I’ve had the chance to reflect on the parallels between moving to a new home and being an entrepreneur.
Not that I’ve orchestrated the perfect move-not by far, but it’s because it hasn’t been perfect, that I’ve been able to look at the similarities between my move and my business.
Lesson #1-Make a plan
Any new major initiative or project needs a good plan. Mapped out with who’s responsible for what, when it’s going to get done and what the results and outcomes hope to be. It’s also a good idea to get input from others, because it’s impossible for one person to see everything that may need to get done. You need other eyes and ears to help you out.
Lesson #2-Mark out the time-and stick with it!
Okay, so I was really good at the first part of this-I marked out lots of time on my calendar for sorting, going to Goodwill, the dump, returning things that belonged to others and of course for packing. But when it came to sticking with the schedule, it was not unusual for me to find three or four other more interesting things to do, rather than pack boxes. Then I ended up scrambling at the last minute getting everything packed. When you mark out your time to work on something important in your business, treat that time as if you had an appointment with your most important client!
Lesson #3-Do a little bit everyday
I once had a boss who would ask, “How do you eat an elephant?” and people would look at him quizzically, “One bite at a time”, he would say. And it’s true, doing a little bit everyday, when you have what feels like an overwhelming project, is the best way to approach it. So often we think we need a half day, or even a full day to start working on a new project or product in our business, so we wait, and wait, and wait until we have that half or full day. But you know what? It never comes, because we rarely if EVER have a half or full day with nothing on the calendar. So take a little bit at a time and keep plugging away. Which is how I approached my packing, a little bit here, and little bit there. Working in 90 minute increments is very helpful, by the way.
Lesson #4-Dump what isn’t working for you anymore
As entrepreneurs, we often start down a lot of rabbit holes. In other words, we like to start new projects, you know, the bright shiny object syndrome. We often start or implement things that may not be working for us so well anymore. Just like when you’re moving, you sort through a lot of things you don’t wear, don’t use and don’t need anymore. Take the time to look at your business and ask yourself, what isn’t working for me here anymore, what can I stop doing or get rid of?
Lesson #5-There’s fear and trepidation-even when you know it’s the right thing
This is the lesson that surprised me the most. My husband and I have been planning on moving for quite some time now. It’s something we really wanted to do for our family. But even when it’s something you REALLY want-it doesn’t mean there isn’t fear that comes along with it. And that was the surprise. Usually I feel the fear when I’m not 100% certain that I want to do something, or move in a particular direction, so it surprised me to feel fear about this move. Just like in our businesses when there’s something we know we REALLY want to do in order to play bigger in our businesses, the fear can paralyze us. However, it’s important to realize that we can’t let the fear hold us back-that we must move through it, trust we are on the right path and just go for it!
I’m looking forward to getting from Point A to Point B, grateful for the time we’ve had in this house and in this community, and looking forward to new experiences and friends in our new community. And, I’m grateful for the reminder lessons I’ve learned in the last month-hope they are helpful to you and your business!
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