Lazy is such an ugly word. I prefer the term “selective participation.”
Here we are at the end of another year, when many of us take a look at how far we’ve progressed (or not) and celebrate a brand-new year. Over the past few weeks I have focused on truly bettering the businessman in myself, while actively learning from some great teachers. People that better help push the development in myself through various different approaches, seminars, webinars and just pure listening!
Because of this I was insulated and distanced quite a bit from the chaos and discontent swirling around the election that was dominating the news and “water cooler” conversations many were having. Me? I chose to be surrounded by and focus on ambitious, smart, creative and determined entrepreneurs who were excited about the opportunities available. Of course, I saw the complete opposite on Facebook, where many invested HOURS into watching, fretting over, posting and FUMING about the election, spewing hatred, bitterness, anger and outrage—all extremely unprofitable activities on several levels. I expect that from small thinkers, but entrepreneurs? Before you indulge in any activity, you ought to ask yourself, “Where’s the profit in that?” Is posting your political views furthering organizational growth, profitability and stability? Is it directly furthering your stated personal goals? Are you posting a comment with strategic thought about how it will strengthen your company’s brand and connection with your clients, or is it purely a thoughtless, selfish and grossly immature, emotional response because you’re bored? Surely you can find more productive and healthy ways to vent your anger than an activity that will risk your productive relationships with clients, employees and other strategic partners. I’m not suggesting you shouldn’t think about the election and what it may mean to you, nor am I suggesting you don’t voice your opinion, stay educated and informed—I’m saying think before you indulge in any activity as to whether or not it’s a productive activity AND absolutely consider what you’re posting online, considering the consequences and ripple effect it has. If you know posting your opinion will cause some clients, family, friends, employees and relationships to sour and you’re okay with that, have at it. But don’t sit and complain about how “stupid” others are for disagreeing with you and taking their business elsewhere. Be smarter than that.
So, whether you’re happy and optimistic about our president-elect or devastated and deeply concerned, one thing remains the same: YOU are still responsible for your own life and its outcomes. YOU have to choose what you are going to focus on right now. YOU still need to focus on making your business stronger, more resilient and more profitable, and your daily choices and activities are going to have a far greater impact on your personal success than who’s elected—and I know you’ve heard that, but have you REALLY heard it? Understood it? Internalized it and acted on it? Or, have you continued to indulge your time in bitter sad-sack complaining on Facebook and with others? If you perceive that business may become more difficult due to the newly elected president, then don’t sit around and brood—get busy. If you think business is going to improve, don’t coast or gloat or waste any of YOUR time complaining about the protestors and riots. GET BUSY. There will be another recession. The economy is flat and this year was the bottom of a 70-year low of new business start-ups. If you’re experiencing growth, it’s largely due to taking clients from other weaker competitors, not due to businesses starting and growing—and since YOUR business depends on the strength, growth and health of other small businesses, this ought to concern you.
P.S.—Trump isn’t going to come save you either.
Now that my whirlwind of events is over and I get a whole two weeks to recoup before it starts up again, I’m going to invest that time into thinking about what I’m going to do this week, this month and next year to make sure I have the most productive and profitable year ever. The holidays are, and haven’t been in years, a time to reflect, pause, take time off, etc. In fact, I really don’t like Christmas at all. Seems like a giant pile of more stuff to do, spending time with people I don’t really like, being pressured to buy gifts for people out of obligation instead of inspiration (which takes the fun out of it for me) and dealing with the inability to get things done since everyone else is screwing around. Yeah, I know…bah, humbug. If three ghosts want to keep me up on Christmas Eve, it better be the spirits of Jack, Glen, and Patron. I move we switch Christmas to the summer, when time off could be useful. But if you love the holidays, I DO wish you a jolly one and hope your New Year is filled with an abundance of good. To help in facilitating that, let me get on with some merry moneymaking ideas that can put a little more jingle in your jeans…