Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The Reluctant Entrepreneur

Let me explain
You know I was never one of those inspired, independent or brave individuals that had a dream to own their own business. I can clearly remember 2 or 3 occasions in Dubai sitting in front of a young man of some 20 something years incredulously asking/telling - "but you are so young?"  "isn't it scary?" "how did you decide to go our on your own?" It seemed so BIG, to leave a full time job or to start a business when so new in the business world.

My core reason for doing my own thing was maybe a bit different than perhaps some... I wanted to have an adventure and I wanted to learn HEAPS about myself and grow as a result.My intention was to never become an entrepreneur but somehow I have fallen into it...and damn I have fallen hard.
The thing is... you get addicted (no one warned me about that part!) and once you open the door to it (entrepreneurship) the bloody door won't shut! and you start to see other interesting things back there down that hallway and that path.... and you have this new found bravery (because you are still on a high from "oh my goodness i actually did it!") that you go off exploring......

And then... children...(am getting to the moral of the story)... you might just find yourself really FULL again....like a fat kid that has got over excited by too many cake types and topings....who eventually makes herself sick. That is where I am now - realizing I need to tame this monster of "opportunity" - because believe me (and it may sound cheesy), when you tell the universe you are open for business ...some crazy sh*t starts to happen and so many new opportunities and partnerships come your way.

As a result I have taken a big breath and gone back to the drawing board (hence the all important team meeting with myself on Monday) and remind myself there is no need to say Yes to everything and everyone and no need to take everything that comes my way. Warning: when you do not have a "proper job" your inner critic (Saboteur) will tell you all sorts of reasons why you need to take every opportunity that comes your way, and that you really SHOULD be doing more because you know you are not doing 9-5 and earning big bucks yet by any means.

So in the end I decided to do what any self respecting ex media planner would do when overwhelmed and trying to reign in and organize their life  - I created an excel spreadsheet ;-)

Now this I used for me and my new Entrepreneur addiction/mindset but it could work for any of you that feel you have too much on and are no idea where to start or where to cut.
I call the sheet... drum roll please ....... "Making Good Sh*t Happen"
It Includes the Columns:
  • What - what is the project/thing that you have taken on/agreed to/embarking on
  • Priority - give it a ranking (but do this part last after you do all of the below)
  • Why - why the hell are you doing this in the first place? what does it give you? (an obvious and important question)
  • Values fulfilled - how does this feed who you are and what is important to you... eg) creative, social, giving back, family
  • $$$ - does it generate ding dongs...or dollars or whatever . Is it profitable? (just important to recognize if it does or not...)
  • Time Dedication - what are you dedicating per week... is it stealing your time? are you not dedicating enough given its importance....
It was erm quite fun to do (again ex media planner... not my fault) , and you know it was really valuable for me! I believe sometimes we get stuck in the details of being busy and trying to gain approval from everyone and everything that we do not stop and actually assess what we are doing and taking on and why.
So take stock, have a meeting with yourself and see what you really want to dedicate your time and energy to - life is too short to be busy for the sake of busy!

PS: if you are interested to find out more about the coach-ish sounding terms (value fulfillment and Saboteur)  in the above flick me a mail and can give you some resources to play with ;-)