Give Yourself a Pat on the Back

Give Yourself a Pat on the Back

 So, you’ve entered the big, bad world of business and you’re keen to show everyone (including yourself) just how hungry you are.

Just how motivated you are.

Just how determined you are to get to the next step, to smash your targets, to grow, to reach the next goal.

And then the next.

Sometimes in business, we get so caught up in moving to the next thing, striving to be better with each and every day, that we forget to acknowledge just how far we’ve come, no matter where we are in our own personal journeys.

And that’s the idea with this week’s blog, giving yourself some credit for how far you’ve come.

Humility and humbleness to business owners are great strengths, as they keep us grounded and appreciative of what we’re building, but sometimes, just sometimes, we need to give ourselves a pat on the back in respect of the job we’ve done so far.

There is no better way of starting this, than by looking at your timeline, even if it’s a short one.

Let’s say you set up in business six months ago, after leaving a full-time job you really didn’t enjoy. You’re still in business six months later, so that’s something to be proud of, as there are plenty of people who can’t say the same…

Practically, you may have more flexibility with your working hours, or you may be rushed off your feet.

Try to view either of these situations with positivity.

More flexibility? Great, just what you wanted.

Rushed off your feet? How lucky you are to be so busy!

This isn’t just about looking at things through rose tinted spectacles, it’s about giving yourself genuine credit for what you’ve achieved, and we know that there are so many business owners out there who find it hard to give themselves credit, but just try.

Did you manage to secure a certain number of clients this year? That’s something to be proud of.

Did you manage to retain existing clients despite difficult circumstances? You should be proud of that too.

When faced with the world changing crisis of the coronavirus pandemic, what did you do?

Did you diversify and find a way through?

Did you furlough your staff in the interests of their safety and livelihoods?

Did you support your team to work from home?

Yes, things like this can seem like all part of the job at the time, whilst you’re doing them, just as filing your tax return on time, or hitting your sales target can, but as a rule, business owners are pretty rubbish at acknowledging our successes, even if they really are just ‘little wins’.

You might be coming out of (or in the middle of) a really hard time for your business, but even then, there is scope to look back on what you have built with pride, and to give yourself credit for that.

Is your business your sole form of income? OK, it can be a scary thought, but you managed to do it. You took a leap of faith and turned an idea, a passion, a skill or a hobby into a livelihood.

If circumstances beyond your control have made it less viable, or put a hold on growth for now, you still need to remind yourself of how well you’ve done to get so far.

Now, getting so far is one thing, but at 20:80e we know how to help businesses go even further than ‘so far’. We know how to turn the little wins into big successes. We know how to help businesses weather storms, survive crises and bounce back, bigger, better and stronger…

But for now, think about getting ‘so far’.

We see businesses of all sizes, on a daily basis, who are so driven to succeed that they risk missing their successes, their milestones. What happens then, is that they end up with a warped view of how far they’ve come, and they only see where they are right now as ground zero, without paying any mind to what they’ve already managed to accomplish.

Hang on, isn’t business all about moving forward?

Yes, of course it is, but so is education. Getting from one stage to the next. Learning new things.

The trouble with this of course, is that without consolidation, reflection and acknowledgement, not only is there no point in moving forwards, there is also very little joy.

If a child learns his times tables, but doesn’t understand the place value of numbers, there really isn’t much point in celebrating the rope learning. It doesn’t really help anyone.

However, if a child learns place value to the point that it becomes embedded in their understanding, this is worth celebrating because it means they are ready to move on to addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.

Do they forget the importance of place value along the way?

Maybe, but it never loses its actual importance in their implementation of mathematical skills for life.

How does this analogy apply to you as a business owner?

Everything you’ve taken on, everything you’ve tried for the first time, everything you’ve developed to the point of full understanding – it all plays a part in your success in business.

It’s all part of the building blocks of your success in business.

And you should be proud of that. You should be proud of how far you’ve come.

And then?

Well, then you should get straight back to showing everyone (including yourself) just how hungry you are.

Just how motivated you are.

Just how determined you are to get to the next step, to smash your targets, to grow, to reach the next goal.

And then the next.

But don’t forget to give yourself the occasional pat on the back.

You’re doing well.

Keep going.