Do you remember when you were young having joy in doing business? Perhaps your response is: “I was not doing business when I was young, I was at school!” Think about it again though, I’m sure you were doing business or looking at your teammates doing business. For me, I was between the ages of 6 and 8, and I was playing marbles with the other pupils during breaks.
Doing Business Like A Kid
There were small and big marbles balls, some were in glass and some with made with iron. The iron marbles were more valuable as they were heavy, and my uncle gave me some big irons that came from ball bearing. You could exchange one big iron marble for two made of glass. I loved seeing the different colors of the marbles in glass, and my collection was accumulating. It was fun! We were playing, exchanging marbles balls and negotiating what we had in order to increase our collections with other teammates and classmates. This is similar to what we call being in business.
The same kind of story happened again more than twenty later when my own boys came home with Pokémon cards. Playing marbles was old-fashioned and there was a fever for Pokémon cards going around. My boys would even ask for money to buy cards that were more difficult to find. Being young, they didn’t realize this was akin to being in business. Like me at a young age, they were in it for the joy!
During my career as an IT consultant managing projects, I saw so many people coming to work without any desire. Everyone was tired. Some of them just made a show of presence. Even with the owner of the business present, people would just complain. Most of the time, my own attitude of joy would challenge others. Some of them would ask me: why are you so happy?
They were right, I was happy. There are fewer muscles working when you’re happy and that would help me save my energy. And most of all I was happy because I had gratitude. I was grateful to be in that place with those people. I was thankful for the things happening in my life without any judgements of it being good or bad.
So here is a first key to change tracks: what gratitude can you have about your work or being in business?
The good news is when you are in gratitude for your business – both the situations and the people – you cannot be in a state of criticism and judgment.
Who Can Contribute?
As a business owner, most of the time you want to do all the things, or you want to have everything under your control. And some of these things you don’t even like to do or oversee. Perhaps these are the things stealing your energy? Or taking the fun out of the business for you? Have you tried to ask for help? You can start by asking this question: who can contribute to my work and my business?
Compare what you were doing when you were young and what you are doing now. At a young age, nothing seems impossible. You lived with almost no judgment in doing things. Growing up and becoming an adult, we learned (whether told by family, education or society) how it works in the real world. If we have the point of view that work and business always need to be serious, then we won’t have any fun doing what we do. If you can identify the point of views and judgments, you have learned or grown to live and work by – you can start making some real changes. Ask questions like, does this belong to me? Most of the time our judgments don’t belong to us and we can change our point of view.
I can remember during a one-day training session with an entrepreneur we were discussing ‘Business, Money and You.’ He was a successful businessman and had money, but he also had some difficult clients that wanted him to be available to them all the time. While he had wealth, he had no time to enjoy life. The joy of doing business for him was so hard that he was contemplating selling the company. He had separated himself from his life in order to operate as a businessman and be available to all 24/7.
What separation have created in your own business and life? Having no joy in your life can impact your business and the opposite is true too. What changes can you make, like trying out to incorporate joy into your life and then into your business?
One of the beliefs many of us have been taught is that you need to work hard, and then you will be rewarded with happiness. So, work hard, earn money, and then you will have fun? What if these are false beliefs? What if you can have fun in your craft and have the reward and the money at the same time?
A good example of this, is when you enter a store and see a shop assistant with an unhappy facial expression – no joy at all. Then you see another shop assistant speaking to customers with excitement and joy. Which would you choose to work with? By instinct you will probably be attracted by the energy of the second one, just like when a business such as Casivo displays helpful messages online and tends to keep more interested consumers than a lackluster webpage. What changes could you make in your own craft that would help you to mimic the second shop assistant? In turn, drawing people to want to work with you.
John Lennon was perhaps a dreamer with his song: “Imagine all the people living life in peace. You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. I hope someday you’ll join us, and the world will be as one.”
Imagine all the people living life and business with joy! What if you can be a contribution to others with your business and your joy? It’s simple, and it’s your choice.