Every business – large, small, or solo entrepreneurship – must have a heart. Just as everything of flesh and blood has a heart, so must your business. Without it, your business will whither and die. It will not thrive.
Does your business have a heart? The answer can be found in the reason your business exists.
If you have never developed a mission or vision statement for your business, or if developing it was merely an exercise in putting words together, correct that immediately. Your vision statement and mission statement speaks to the heart of your business. It speaks to what your heart holds for your your business.
As I review my company and what I want it to look like in the coming year, I realize something very important to the company’s survival: Just because one is a solo entrepreneur or very small business owner does not mean that you are running or, even should be running, your business alone. Admittedly, it can sometimes make you feel very powerful when you are in control of all the various aspects of your business, but the elation only lasts a short while. You cannot know it all and there is certainly not enough time in the day to address all that needs to be done.
Sometimes there are individuals you consider members of you team who don’t even know they are. I have team members like that. These are persons you might emulate or follow. Usually they are in the same business you are and have already made through many of the challenges you know you may face in the future.
February is the month for matters of the heart. Throughout the month, we are reminded to develop and follow habits, i.e. eat the right foods, exercise, that promote a healthy heart for longer, more vibrant life. As I did in my previous blog, I encourage you to have heart in your business – it is the way to ethically succeed. Also, to that list I would add guarding your heart.
I encourage you to guard your heart against callousness of others and from situations that will deplete your energy and spirit. However, don’t interpret this to mean live in fear. On the contrary, your life should be full of love, free of groundless fears. John 14:27 reads “…Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” Guarding your heart is more about allowing others into your lives wisely. Belief in the Word of the Lord is your protection and should be your guiding spirit.
How do you define wealth? Sounds like a simple question, but in truth, it can be a very difficult (not to mention different) answer depending on who you ask. If that is the case, how do you know when you have it?
Many people appear to live meager and miserly lives because they are unable to step back and define what real wealth is to them. They are unable to embrace the thought that real wealth does not necessarily begin and end with having lots of money. That is very one dimensional thinking which can lead to a life spent in continually seeking and acquiring money, but never reaching satisfaction.
Prosperity means many things to just as many people. For some prosperity is limited to the amount of money you have, for others it takes into account the quality of health, relationships and the ability to maintain a particular lifestyle.
However, and here’s the thing, many Christians are actually reluctant to add monetary wealth to our list of what prosperity means, partly because of what is often taught about money. We are often taught that money is a bad thing and that God will frown upon you if you prosper monetarily. In reality, money has no value except that which is assigned to it by one’s culture.
D.E.A.T.H. is the design on one of my t-shirts. It stands for “doing everything according to Him.” I believe that simply following those words gives you the road map, a virtual guide, for your life. So many of your questions and dilemmas can be answered and solved with those few words.
I couldn’t resist a design illustrating those Words. It’s a shock at first glance, but D.E.A.T.H. is an inescapable truth.
You and I know that procrastination is one of the biggest roadblocks to success. In fact, the graveyard is full of unfulfilled dreams because someone was waiting for the right time, or until their finances were in order, or until the kids were grown, or whatever imagined stumbling block was out of the way. In other words, until the sun, moon and stars aligned.
It is wasteful and, certainly regrettable, that so many do not recognize procrastination nor understand the insidious way it squashes dreams.
Walking in faith is like wearing your heart on your sleeve. You are understood and admired by many, but many more may ridicule and admonish you about being so open concerning your beliefs.
It is often the same when we start a business. Not everyone believes in your venture, nor will they support what you are trying to accomplish by becoming an entrepreneur. Instead, you hear all the reason you should not follow through on what you believe. There are many reasons for this: jealousy, lack of understanding, even lack of courage. Sound familiar?
If your goal in starting a business – or doing anything else for that matter – is this vague notion of getting rich, then is your why really strong enough?
I think you should understand that it is not a bad thing to want to be rich, but you should consider that it is rare that anyone wants to be rich just for the sake of having a lot of money, rather it’s what you can do with the money that is important.
Consequently, anyone who is striving to be successful must analyze, drill down to the root of why they want success. Without that analysis, it will be very hard to stay focused and make the sacrifices that need to be made for that success to be realized. Your why helps to feed the discipline that is needed for success.
If you are an entrepreneur, business owner, or striving to be a successful career professional you understand that you must have the determination to succeed. Without determination, it is difficult to get out of bed each morning, let alone put one foot in front of the other as you strive to reach your goals. In all honesty, if there is no determination, there is no success. Proverbs has many pearls of wisdom and you can find specific references to determination (or the consequences of the lack of it) in this way: “Love not sleep, lest you come to poverty; open your eyes and you will have plenty of bread.” Proverbs 20:13.