“NEVER GIVE UP – Life doesn’t always go the way we plan or would wish. Sometimes we are paddling up stream as hard as we can and yet, there seems to be no progress. It may be just a few more strokes and we will have the breakthrough. Today, keep on trying and you’ll find your way!” LeAnn Riley
I get these really short emails of wisdom each day and I love them. I find it to be a great way to start the day with some extra thought in a new direction.
This last week when I was podcasting with Michelle Henderson of BadCat Digital our starting subject was about this feeling we both had as business owners of not having any idea where we were going to be headed with our businesses. I think we were embracing the magnitude of the unknown and trying to put it into a context we could understand.
For me that week was like being in a boat and we could no longer see land, in any direction. At that point, you have to start to trust your maps, a compass, the sun, and GPS. All of these tools are most effective when they are leading you somewhere.
What if you don’t know where you are going?
What do you do when on your boat?
- Enjoy the view.
- Hang out with the few other people on your boat.
- Make sure everyone is safe and well.
- Make sure the ship stays in tip-top shape.
- Focus on what you do have control over.
- Help out when asked.
- Get, that, while we are all out in this water together, we are all on different boats having very different experiences.
- You are going to say or do something to hurt someone’s feelings. Apologize and say you are sorry right away. The boat is too small for that kind of drama to fester and stay.
- Start creating multiple options for when your boat does reach land. This mostly refers to your business.
- Be grateful for the breath you are taking and so many other things in your life.
- Before you go to sleep each night, ponder big dreams about an amazing future ahead.
In the end, Michelle and I each came to our own conclusions. One was that we would write out our pandemic recovery plan for our businesses. When we checked in a week later we had taken this action and it turned out in took less than 30 minutes and it relieved so much stress.
I started listening to other podcasts that were talking to other business owners from around the world on how they are handling this and what they are doing and planning to do. I don’t have to recreate the wheel, I can learn with others and grow with their insight. Here are my top 7.
Best Business Podcasts Talking About Business and Covid-19
- Access and Opportunity with Carla Harris
- The Indicator
- Entrepreneurs On Fire
- How I Built This
- HBR – Women At Work
- If These Heels Could Talk
Since we are just hanging out on the boat, too far out to see the shore, or to know when we will be able to dock our ship, we might as well make the best of it, don’t make it complicated, and have a good time.
I am really grateful to be a small business owner. It has taught me so many things over the past fourteen years. Flexibility, the art of letting go, how to rebuild, how to fail multiple times, how not doing anything is an action, how to support others better, and most importantly to celebrate the small wins. For those of you reading this who are not used to all of this uncertainty, I am so sorry that you are learning in this way. I wish I could change that for you. Here is the simplest advice I can share with you.
I think Robert Fulghum put it best with his poem, “Everything I Needed To Know I Learned In Kindergarten.”
Complete Poem PDF
He ends it with this statement:
“And it is still true, no matter how old you
are – when you go out into the world, it is best
to hold hands and stick together.”
While we may not be able to hold hands with everyone right now, we can stick together to support each other.
Since we started this with some thoughtful words from LeAnn Riley, let us end with some insight from her too.
“Be Original – Think up a new idea, plan, course of action. Have fun today and do something you’ve never done before. Just try it and see what happens.” LeAnn Riley