Saturday, July 20, 2013

Toss Away Your "Could Haves" and "Should Haves"

It's Toss Away Your "Could Haves" and "Should Haves" Day!  And you are invited to be part of it! For one day, you are invited to toss away a certain "should have" or "could have" that leads to stress, guilt, misery, or any sort of sadness. What a perfect day to give up some of those regrets that are holding you and your business back!

I should have been able to quit my job by now.
I could have finished my education and gotten a "real" job.
I should have made more prospecting calls.
I could have placed that advertisement.
I should have learned about social media marketing.
I could have started a blog.
I should have published more articles.
I could have attended more networking events
I should have done more____
I could have...

Many people starting a business think they "should" be doing this thing or that thing to be successful.  And then when they don't succeed at the pace they think they "should", they start thinking of all the things they "should have" and "could have" done differently.

When I started my business, I would sometimes work late at night or early in the morning. But I began to get criticism from some of my friends who would get emails or faxes from me at all hours of the day and night. They felt that if I was going to be taken seriously, then I "should" work 9 - 5 like most "normal" business people. I let them persuade me that this was true and tried to change my schedule. But I am a night owl by nature and forcing myself to change my natural rhythm caused stress and made me very unproductive and irritable. And so I went back to my normal routine.  And then when I experienced some setbacks, it was very easy for me to say to they were right.  I should have adjusted my schedule.  I could have if I had wanted to.  It took me a long time to realize that I was right and they were not.   By giving up this "should have" and working when I feel at my best and most creative, I am actually more efficient and productive - and much easier to get along with! Yes, it's true that I do have to be available during some portion of "normal" business hours to interact with clients and prospects. But much of my business is not restricted by time so why should I place this expectation on myself?

There ARE certain things necessary to be successful in business. You have to have a viable product or service. You have to promote yourself and your products or services. You have to earn the trust and respect of your customers. There are many ways to do these things. There is no one way that "should" work for everyone. If your business isn't growing, it's probably not because you should have done this thing or that thing.  You should have done what felt right and worked best for you. 
And so today I invite you to toss away your "should haves" and "could haves". Take a look at your business. Make a list of all the things you did because you "should have". Now review your list. Is there anything on the list that was not effective? That caused you stress?  That you spend time worrying about how you "could have" done it differently?  What would happen if you stopped worrying about it and just started over? I encourage you to try it just for today.

I "should have" worked longer today. I "could have" since I had nothing else on my schedule.  But I didn't. It was a beautiful day and I took Bob and Austin for a walk, sat on my porch and read, watched my hummingbirds at the feeder, and talked to friends. And I am not going to worry about what I "should have" accomplished today.  What did you toss away today? I'd love to hear. Feel free to share in the comments.

1 comment:

Tilla Brook said...

I love this. I "could have" all my work in one place in the house and only work on one thing at a time. It's in 3! It suits me.