Oh boy is the advice flying around these days! It’s hard to know who to listen to and what is real.
Especially challenging when we are running businesses in the midst of it all.
I wanted to share with you some of the best advice I’ve heard so far these past few weeks.
- Be SELECTIVE in who you listen to. For the first time ever I’ve had to purposely stop my usual review and readings of my inbox and Facebook, simply because there is TOOOO MUCH advice going on right now. And I’ve found it exhausting. Everyone is wanting to give free stuff, free calls and all sorts of things on how to handle this pandemic and recession proof my biz. Now it’s not to say the advice is wrong – I suspect most of it is pretty good! – but we simply cannot take it all in. Imagine you are a glass of water and you are extra full already… trying to take it all in just means we start overflowing and spilling everywhere. Pick 1 or 2 people that you feel aligned with and pay attention to them. For me that has been David Neagle, who brings a mix of business & spirit that aligns with who I am and how I choose to run my business. (David recently did a 4-Part series on Navigating a Crisis that I have found immensely helpful and refreshing). Pick 1 or 2 people to listen to and stop listening to everyone else (for now – this is temporary).
- LIMIT the amount of news you are taking in. In the mornings I like to grab my coffee and start scrolling away through Facebook as I start my day. But last week I found myself going down a real rabbit hole of negativity, as I was reading people’s posts, comments and fears. And I could feel my fear growing. I could feel my energy draining. Then I heard someone share that we need to seriously limit WHERE we are getting our news from and how MUCH we allow ourselves to take in. I’ve temporarily stopped following people and groups online that are feeding the fear. I am purposely only watching our local news once at 5:00 so that I can get the report from our provincial Chief Medical Officer Deena Hinshaw (who is freaking amazing btw – shout out to ALL of our medical professionals right now!) And outside of that I am taking in NOTHING else. We know enough at this point to stay safe, there is no need to keep stirring the pot of fear.
- Pause. This may be contrary to some of the things you are hearing right now, which are all about how important it is to “keep selling and now is the time to push harder than ever. And that if you don’t you will be forgotten when all of this is done!” Barf. This was something David shared last week in the first of the 4 part series I mentioned above. Unless your business is directly related to what is going on right now in the world, your best option may be to pause. Temporarily. Hold back on promotions and launches that aren’t relevant at the moment. Be very aware of ethical selling (and buying!) People may be buying but are they buying out of hype and fear? (Which will have repercussions down the road.) These are questions that only you can answer for yourself (and hopefully with the support of a coach) as you navigate some of the tough decisions to be made.
And by all means – keep doing what you are doing with current clients. They need you now more than ever. Keep connecting with people as it makes sense to do so… human to human. There are lots of way to serve right now that may not mean an exchange of money in the moment.
- Do not PIVOT! This is for online/service based businesses in particular – not for brick & mortar businesses that have some very real challenges right now. There has been a lot of hype around the number of new opportunities that arise during a crisis. And although this may be true and very real for some businesses (distilleries making hand sanitizer has been one of my favs), this doesn’t mean that YOU have to jump on the opportunity bandwagon. Unless your business model was broken before this crisis, there is no reason to change course right now. You may find yourself offering more of some things and less of others for the time being. You may find yourself struggling to sell in the moment which can feel frightening (get the support of your coach here too!). Imagine that your business is a house that you’ve been building now for years… if you pivot now that’s the equivalent of taking a wrecking ball to your current house and starting to build on the plot next door. We don’t know exactly what the future holds and what our ‘new normal’ may be, but I suspect that for most of us it will be business as usual as the dust settles. Don’t tear down what you’ve already worked so hard to create.
- The seeds you plant now will be what you sow in the future. This was another one that David shared in his series and that really hit home for me. Especially when I think about WHO I am being through this crisis. I have had moments of sheer terror in all of this. I’ve had sleepless nights. I’ve had moments where my inner control freak has pitched a fit about all the things we can’t control right now. And yet… I’ve been able to really find a new strength in all of this. I’ve been able to see how my thoughts can REALLY get in my way, and learn how to harness them into productive thinking. I’ve been praying more and giving things up to God. I’ve been connected more deeply to my girls being home together all day, and having conversations that we wouldn’t normally have. I’ve been cooking more and eating way better because I don’t want to do take out right now. There are habits and ways of thinking that we can cultivate now that will serve us long in the future. Who do you want to be when all of this is done?
And last but certainly not least…
- Stay the fuck home. Listen to your local authorities. Be smart. Be safe. This too shall pass.
Much love to you.