Business Zen

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The Thrill of Entrepreneurism

Entrepreneurism is full of excitement, thrills, highs and lows.  A remarkable number of the more than 100 entrepreneurs I’ve interviewed likened creating a business to riding a roller coaster, and for many of them, the thrill of the roller coaster was a key benefit of being an entrepreneur.

While the roller coaster may be thrilling, it nonetheless creates stress.  Many of us, when under stress, do something quite peculiar.  We HOLD OUR BREATH!  Of all the things we need most during stressful situations, oxygen is right near the top, and yet we hold our breath.  How peculiar!

I don’t have to tell you that holding your breath isn’t good for your stress level nor your health.  As a confirmed breath holder for decades, I now seek out influences to help me breath more consciously, including yoga, exercise and thoughtful people.  One such person recently said, “Your intention becomes your deeds, your deeds become your habits, your habits become your character, and your character becomes your destiny.”

I immediately saw the relationship between the quote and entrepreneurship.  Some entrepreneurs intend to build a business that makes a lot of money.  Some intend to find a better prosthetic limb or a better way to capture solar energy.  Others intend to have the freedom of a decision maker.  Still others intend to make a living to support their families. Intent is the reason they have become entrepreneurs.

Whatever it is, their intent translates very clearly into “deeds,” or actions, and ultimately into the habits they form to build their businesses, the very character of their company, and the destiny of the firm.

Sometimes an entrepreneur with a startup or small firm will realize that their business is stalling or getting smaller.  This could be caused by internal factors, such as the departure of key employees, or external factors, such as a change in regulation.  How can the entrepreneur get the business back on the right track?

Re-examine your intent.  Why are you an entrepreneur, what is it you want to accomplish, and what is your intent in growing the business?  By re-evaluating your intent, you may realize that you’ve changed.  What was true in the beginning may not be true anymore.  Or, you may rediscover your intent in creating the business in the first place.  Finding and clearly understanding your intent will help you define or revitalize your business strategy, define an action plan, and regenerate the character and destiny of your company.  This isn’t easy to do.  You may need help and it may take time.  The potential payout is excellent, however – your business achieving your goals!

Breath well!


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