You’ve probably heard of books like The 4-Hour Work Week and The E-Myth. They teach entrepreneurs how to delegate and liberate themselves from the day-to-day operations of their business so they can do what they’ve always dreamed of doing — sit back and watch the revenues roll in. It’s the great American dream – right?
Here’s something few people talk about … when you get to that point, what do you do with yourself? Sure, you think you’ll travel, you’ll see the world, you’ll take up golf or painting. And that’s all great. But if you’re a work-a-holic who has finally been able to delegate the majority of the day-to-day tasks of your business, there’s a lot of junk that goes on in your head when shifting from “doing” to “being.”
For example, I took off the month of June, yep, I took it off. I worked in my garden, spent time with my 6 kids, went on a family vacation. I think it’s the most amount of time I’ve spent outside work in 19 years. The only thing I did was monitor emails and post a few fun updates to Facebook. Everything else in my business is automated or delegated. It’s a liberating place to be. And since Independence Day has recently passed in the US, I thought I’d chat a little with you about the typical traps the independent entrepreneur tends to fall into.
1) We feel guilty. “I should be working. It’s not right that these revenues should flow in so easily with so little effort.”
2) We feel fear. “Oh, no, what if I cut back on the time I spend in my business and it all falls apart?”
3) We don’t know what do with ourselves. “Hmmm… maybe I should start a new project?” If work is all we know and are, we’ll fall into the trap of creating more work for ourselves instead of actually living and being. As Ann Quindlen, an essayist and novelists said, “You cannot be really first-rate at your work if your work is all you are.”
I don’t claim to have all the answers. I’m in the midst of this, but a few things that have helped me are the following:
a) Immerse yourself in a relaxing, yet productive hobby. In my case it’s gardening.
b) Take a vacation. Go somewhere you’ve always wanted to go.
c) Spend quality time with those you love.
d) Journal. Each morning after I work in my garden, I sit on my back deck and journal whatever’s on my mind. It’s amazing how therapeutic journaling is and how much more clearly I see the world. I’ve even used a few of my journal entries in my blog.
e) Take action from a place of stillness. Contrary to what you’d think from the title, my ecourse How to Get More Done in a Day than Most People Accomplish in a Week isn’t about being a rat on a wheel. It’s about delegation, automation, and operating with focus and serenity. Had I not learned these principles, I’d probably be filling this gap with a bunch of busy work instead of enjoying it thoroughly.
© Copyright 2009 Marnie L Pehrson