A Mother’s Approach To Business!
A quick nod of heads – how many of you are working Moms?How many of you feel overwhelmed, unsupported, misunderstood, exhausted and discouraged? And, simultaneously, as you work in your own business, how many of you feel elated, passionate, ‘on purpose’, celebrated, validated and rich?
I want tosalute you! I really do!In North America, on the second Sunday of May, we celebrate Moms.
I want to share some of the lessons I have learned from my own Mom – and lessons that, as an entrepreneurial Mom, I want to pass on to you.Some of these tips are so very basic and fundamental that it hurts to read them when you know that you aren’t implementing any of them. But you could! There are also some great suggestions here that you just need to re-visit and bring back to life.
1.SURROUND YOURSELF WITH PEOPLE WHO LOVE YOU.
Some basic advice? Yes, I know. However, in the last few months of my Mom’s life, we talked about this over and over again. She kept reminding me that, in the last years and months of your life, it won’t be your work colleagues who come to see you. Mom also kept saying that she admired how I keep my girlfriends close – that inner circle of women who know me and love me for ……ME. It’s a small room ‘in the end’ – who will be there with you and for you? Take time now to nurture those relationships. Get rid of the toxic people in your life and in your business – and watch the energy change with respect to your success and prosperity!
2.BE KIND AND ‘SHARE THE WEALTH’.
In the past few years, since I moved to this part of the country, I learned that my mother was a generous woman with a quiet spirit. She told me of the times she would go to the coffee shop, after a meeting at the Senior’s Center, and quietly pay for the lunch of a struggling college student. That was just one example of her generosity. She didn’t have much – but she often shared what she did have. It’s a universal principle. Give often – give quietly – be generous of spirit. When I started out in the speaking business, I began the practice of ‘tithing’ a keynote presentation to non-profit organizations – groups who, typically, could not afford my services. We are always in a position of being generous and, strategically, can share our expertise.
3.TAKE RISKS AND TRY NEW THINGS.
Anyone who knows me knows that I live my life this way. I give credit to my Mom – I am a ‘chip off the old block’. I always admired my mother’s appetite for growth, for learning, for trying new things. My Mom used to be a DJ at the radio station on one of the military bases we lived on. Pretty cool! She took a computer course when she was in her ‘80’s. She was always fascinated with learning. Women in business tend to be risk-avoidant. Take a page out of my Mom’s book and go try something new today – your business will grow because of it.
4. ALWAYS GET YOUR HAIR DONE AND LOOK NICE.
This might seem like a funny little piece of advice – but it stuck with me. Mom always liked to look nice – she said it made her feel good. I followed suit. Remember the old ‘Wonder Bra’ commercial?“When you look good, you feel good – when you feel good, you do good!”Many of you, who work from home offices, could benefit from this piece of advice! It’s like having a smile in your voice when you answer the phone. It all adds up to being the true professional that you are – be sure you dress and act like it on a daily basis.
I always knew when I would get a phone call from my Mother. I may have just been for a visit – and, during those visits, we had some great (and rousing) conversations. We didn’t always agree on everything. Then, I would leave and return home. The phone would ring and it would be those famous words, “I’ve been thinking……….”, she would say. Most women in business act on impulse – or have knee-jerk reactions to things. We don’t always think things through – nor do we get our ‘thinking in order’. Learn some critical thinking skills – practice them – and see what a difference that, too, will make in the way you do business.
I travel a lot in my coaching and speaking business. And we all know that it is a jungle out there when it comes to germs – especially on airplanes. Mom was always concerned about my health – particularly when I travelled to some third-world countries. As a women solo-preneur, it is critical that I keep an eye on my health. It also takes a lot of energy to reach your goals. In business, it is important to stay healthy – get a good night’s sleep, ‘shut it off’ at least 2-3 hours before bedtime, eat protein throughout the day and hydrate, be sure to get some physical exercise each and every day. These are all great habits for good health but also for good business!
Whenever I returned from a business trip, Mom would call and always ask the question ‘Did you have fun?” I knew the call was coming and so I did always make the effort to have a great answer to that question for her. She loved hearing about some of the different adventures I have had – especially in the past few years as I have had the pleasure of travelling around the world. Fun can mean anything from going on an elephant ride in Cambodia, to belly dancing lessons in Dubai, to learning to cook different food in Italy. It can’t always be about ‘working hard’ – be sure to incorporate some fun into your work. Then, include your family and plan, on a personal wall calendar, when your ‘2012 Fun Days” will be! It will not only make a difference in your personal life but clients are also attracted to people who know how to have fun!
There are great lessons to be learned from our mothers – and not limited to personal application in our lives at home. There are many opportunities for us, as women entrepreneurs, to pass on these lessons to our own daughters. It’s not just about the teaching – it’s about the doing – and the being.