I just took a vacation. Two in fact. An extended one in October and a weekend beach getaway last weekend for husband’s birthday. Our last vacation was two years ago for an anniversary. And, before that…well, hubby and I had not taken a “real” vacation since we married way back in 2003. In fact, we didn’t even have a honeymoon. (If you are doing the math, that’s about 13 years with no vacation.)
Why not? Because we were businesses owners, and we were always working in our businesses, afraid our clients would leave us for another company if we weren’t accessible for any extended period of time. Or that if we spent the money, we would not have it later when cash wasn’t flowing.
I’m telling you this not so you can shake your head in amazement, feel sorry for us, or worry about our sanity. Nor am I suggesting you do the same (not by a long shot). I’m also not telling you to “take vacations” because life is too short—though that may be true.
No, one reason for sharing this is because, too often, we only see someone else’s highlight reel, never knowing the story behind the Instagram story. We think “I must not be doing something right because I can’t afford to travel like that.” Or “Why isn’t my life more fun and adventurous?” Or “How did they get so lucky?”
I know because I’ve been there. Full of envy, comparing myself to others and feeling like I was doing something (everything) wrong. Feeling like I deserved more. That I was entitled to a better life. That my life was turning out to be some cosmic joke.
I wasn’t wrong to want more for myself and my family. Neither are you. However, focusing on the way others are living their lives will NEVER help you create a joyful life, filled with all the magic and wonder you desire.
The time may not be right for you to take a vacation, and that’s okay. Maybe you have too much work to do because you have #goals. Or other priorities. Maybe you want to do something bigger and better that requires more planning. Or better timing. Maybe you don’t feel like you can afford it right now. Regardless, it’s all good. Nothing is permanent, not even rainstorms.
The second reason I’m sharing is because I’ve heard lately from a number of you about how you are struggling right now because “clients are focused on the holidays and not willing to spend money on services.” (Or, “it’s the Summer, and clients are on vacation.” Or, “it’s Spring Break, no one is interested in legal services right now.” Or…)
I want you to know you can make a different choice. In fact, the point of this post is about choice. You can choose to take a vacation. You can choose to not take a vacation. You can choose to put more time into your business right now. You can choose to ignore those negative voices in your head about “no one is spending money on services” and choose instead to believe, of the 7.5 billion people in this world, someone, somewhere, right now, is looking for exactly what you offer.
You can choose any damn thing you want, and YOU will be okay. No one else’s opinion on the subject counts. No one is watching you as much as you think they are. No one is keeping score except maybe you.
It’s a lesson I wish I had learned a long time ago.
If you are feeling dissatisfied with something in your life right now–whatever it is–I’m going to ask you to try something new. Ready? I want you to do the OPPOSITE of what you would normally do. For example:
* If you are used to going all out all the time, pedal to the metal, I want you to ease off the gas a bit. Relax. Trust that the Universe has your back.
* If you are always “letting yourself off the hook,” being self-indulgent, and feeling resentful because you think you “deserve” more–and it really shows in your business because you are not able to pay your bills on time or create all you desire, I recommend you try on self-discipline for at least 90 days. But it won’t work unless you choose it, not as a punishment, but as a gift to yourself.
* If you are typically indecisive because you over-analyze EVERYTHING, try setting time limits in which you MUST make a decision–and then follow thru. Know that whatever decision you make, you will make it the right decision for you.
* If you are always buying every shiny object (oh, those how-to video trainings we never have the time or interest in completing once we purchase them), make a commitment to not purchase any more for the next 90 days–or at least until you’ve completed all you already own.
* If you are a committed DIYer, start outsourcing and delegating everything you can. Realize you are never going to grow and achieve all you want to achieve if you don’t learn to let go and trust others to help you.
* If you always fly by the seat of your knickers or only work when the mood strikes, stop and create a plan and then stick to your implementation schedule.
* If you never take vacations, take one. Now. Even if it is short.
* If you are afraid to ask clients to pay you what you are truly worth, commit to ask for help in overcoming this under-confidence and shifting your mindset.
You get the idea? For the next 90 days, step out of your comfort zone. Do the opposite of what you would normally do. Change your perspective. Make a different choice. Ask for help. (Or, if you are always asking other people to help you instead of figuring it out for yourself, you may want to commit to doing your own research for 90 days.)
It wasn’t until I started to challenge the way I “normally” think that my life began to change for the better. And I’m not just talking about taking time off. I’m talking about creating more of everything I truly desired. Love. Money. Joy. Fulfillment. You name it.
What decisions do you need to make to get what you want out of this life?
When will you stop conforming to what everyone else is doing, and stop picking yourself apart, and start getting laser-focused on what you truly, deeply want?
What if by this time next year this you are living your best life and instead of feeling like you have to sacrifice all the time? You could ditch the misconceptions, comparison, and self-critique and start running your own race with blinders on, fully focused on your goals.
What if 2019 is the year you…
- Double—maybe even triple—your revenue?
- Stop feeling guilty when you take time off?
- Engage in daily self-care and enjoy adequate rest?
- Spend more time with people you love and less time jumping thru hoops for people that wouldn’t jump over a puddle for you?
- Ask for and gratefully receive help when you need it instead of forcing yourself to push through?
- Devote more time to travel, enjoy hobbies, or just relax—without worrying about the success and sustainability of your business?
- Let go of fear around learning how to say “no” to demanding clients, work fewer but more productive hours because you had a dream team in place to help you grow your business, and focus your time and resources on activities that will allow you to choose only what you love to do for your highest and best good?
If you are ready to transform from overtired, overwhelmed and overworked to successful CEO, excited about all you are creating in your business and your life, I invite you to reach out to me and let’s have a conversation. Regardless of whether you need or want my help right now, I’d love to learn more about you, your business and your goals.