Recently my children’s little league baseball team was defeated—badly. At one point, I looked at another mom and said, “Please let the bloodshed end!” After the game, the coach brought the team into the dugout to review what worked and what didn’t work. He began with a review of the other team’s performance. One boy piped in, “They sure hit well when they were at bat.” Another boy said, “And they were good at stealing bases!” This got me thinking about how Smart Women need a good offense to win this game we call entrepreneurship.
Have you ever had a Big Idea that you were over the moon about only to have your hopes dashed because you shared it with someone who you trusted and they told you (typically in a very flat tone) “that will never work.” I’ve had this unfortunate experience happen to me on more than one occasion over the last two decades as an entrepreneur. It’s painful isn’t it? You get all excited about the possibility of living your passionate life and someone pops the air in your dream balloon!
Today, I received an email from a very smart woman who is just beginning her journey as an entrepreneur. In her email, she shared with me that lately she’s been noticing that a lot of “stuff” is coming up for her. When I read this, I smiled. I knew that my smart, courageous friend is getting out of her “comfort zone.” Smart Women know that when they enter unfamiliar territory in life and business, “stuff” always shows up and can get in the way.
Making a decision to do something new or different in your life can get really uncomfortable. It triggers all of your “stuff” down deep inside. You may start to question everything you do and sometimes you wonder if you should continue with your new Big Idea, Dream, or Goal. After all, you may not be overjoyed with your current life situation, job, or business but at least it’s familiar—right? I remember a time in my life when I felt out of sorts, stuck and trapped, but at the same time I wasn’t sure if I had the courage to make the changes that were needed in order to feel whole, passionate and purposeful.
For example, when I decided to give birth to Smart Women Smart Solutions, there were many reasons why it wasn’t the most “ideal” time to begin something new. For example, I had my son who was a toddler and was pregnant with my daughter. My “stuff” seemed to pop up everywhere and follow me around with all of the reasons why now might not be the “right” time to start a new business. “Who will take care of my son?” “Now isn’t the right time” “What if it doesn’t work?” “What if I fail?” Sound familiar?
Our family is vacationing in Park City, Utah this month. I enjoy sitting on the deck which overlooks a large pond that is frequented by ducks and geese. It’s a peaceful, quiet place to sit and ponder a meaningful life filled with passion and purpose.
The other day, I noticed the gardener mowing the enormous piece of land around the pond. What I found most interesting was how he created a boundary between the land and the pond. He left the grass and weeds a bit high between the pond and the ground around our deck. It created a “boundary” for people walking by. As a matter of fact, I’ve noticed that my children will not cross that area. Greg and I have not said anything to them about the pond and yet, this “boundary” created the idea, “do not trespass.”
This got me thinking about the “boundaries” that live within us as we walk through life.
The journey from being a child to becoming an adult is one that can be filled with lessons and advice that do not always benefit us later in life. Although these messages may be filled with love and good intentions, they can sometimes keep us from crossing our own “imaginary boundaries” into realizing our Big ideas, dreams, and goals.
As I was unpacking a box in our new house the other day, I found a beautiful drawing that my son Jack had done when he was in Kindergarten last year, in the spring. It’s 4 pieces of paper layered together with drawings and these 4 words: seed, roots, stem, flower. There is a lot of sunshine and rain above to illustrate how growing something meaningful needs both. When Jack saw it, he immediately began to explain to his younger sister Jenna how this works. “You plant a seed, give it water, then a root grows, then a stem and then you have a flower one day.” Wow, if only it were that simple!
Realizing a big idea, dream, or goal is a lot like planting a seed in your garden. The first step is to decide which seed (idea) you want to plant. There are so many choices. Which one seems to be the perfect fit for you right now in your life? After you decide what seed you want to plant, you need to learn about that seed and how it needs to be cared for to get the best results.