You're busy. Your phone's buzzing with notifications, your desk's a storm of Post-It notes, and your news feed says the world's got more than enough problems to solve (...Like this "sixth mass extinction" business? Your email inbox is already a black hole of doom!)
It's easy to get overwhelmed by all that you "should" and could be doing as an entrepreneur (and, well, as a human), but isn't business without purpose just busy-ness? Be honest (we're not judging).
- Does your to-do list actually matter?
- Are you spinning your wheels... or spinning a better future?
- Are you busy being busy... or doing your great life's work?
If you're like most of us, it's all too easy to stray off-course and forget why we started business in the first place.
So are you ready to bring back your business "soul"? Here are 3 instant consciousness shifts for what I like to call, a business "inner-vention."
A business exists to make money, yes, but Conscious Capitalism founders Whole Foods' John Mackey and Raj Sisoda would say that your company exists to "serve the interests of all major stakeholders." Which brings up the big question: why does your business matter to anyone other than you and your bank account? What impact are you making on your customers, on your employees or community, stakeholders, suppliers, your industry, and, yes, the world at large?
Profiting by doing good is nothing new but it's easy to forget about our higher purpose in the midst of the daily grind. Why did you start this business in the first place? Try stopping today to ask what matters to you and what difference you want to make for having been here. What kind of world do you want to leave behind? What small part could your company play in instigating that compelling vision?
What part of your work could use a "purpose makeover?" See if you can find one way to bring your purpose back front and center this week.
Upon researching thousands of leaders from all walks of life, Bruce Schneider, Ph.D, has shown that leaders who are both conscious and successful typically look for opportunities where everyone wins. The next decision you have to make, try considering all of the people who may be impacted and put yourself in their shoes. How might they feel? What ripple effects might your work make -- both positive and negative?
Schneider shows that the best ideas are often those that are genuine opportunities for everyone to benefit. See if you can find one opportunity this week that is a seriously huge win for you, all others, and the world.
Embody Your Values.
Ever notice how the most inspiring leaders are not dictators but, well, more like role models? In Schneider's book, Energy Leadership, he illustrates how the most conscious leaders do not waste their energy trying to control and manipulate others but instead:
- set a moving example,
- empower others to bring out their own gifts,
- collaborate as equals, and
- create self-sustaining, supportive relationships, environments, and cultures.
Start with an honest assessment of your values. What are the core beliefs your company stands for? What principles are your customers passionate about? (Very important!) How well are you living those values personally? What example are you setting and/or where are you falling out of integrity?
Whether you're a solopreneur or a Fortune 500 organization, it's important to be aware of the culture you are creating. Is your personal lifestyle in alignment with the things that matter most to this mission? Do you have systems, processes, and environment in place that will continue to nurture your values over time? While it may seem trivial, you, your attitude, and your lifestyle are the foundation upon which your business will grow. Conscious entrepreneurs serve their community in authentic alignment with their mission, nurturing their most valuable asset (psst, that's you!).
An entrepreneur with a business selling "health" related products or services could, for example, ask some great questions here.
"What does 'health' mean to me and do my products and services truly provide this vision of inside-out health? Am I practicing what I preach? Is interacting with my company a -health and -energy giving experience or is my customer service a total headache? Am I creating an empowered community of health-minded people or is my business all about me, my ego, and/or my wallet?"
Take a closer look at your values and attitude this week and notice the impact they've been having on the ecosystem of your business. What would a more authentic embodiment of what matters look like?
So, the next time your sales page is giving you a headache, know that a more conscious business is just a thought or two away.
Just remember that like millions of others, you're on a mission:
To create an inspiring future, to serve your community, and to be the change you wish to see.
How can you spread more love and light?
Stephanie Seibel is an integral business and life coach passionate about helping conscious creatives be the change through the journey of entrepreneurship. She is currently building a community of dreamers, movers, and shakers and will soon be launching her brand new Business Inner-Vention program. To hop on the wait-list or to join the community, visit www.redthreadcoaching.com or connect on Twitter @RedThreadCoach