I’m never going to be the person who woos you with my stuff or status. I just won’t. I learned a few good lessons from my parents, and my in-laws. One of them being, no one who matters cares what you have or don’t have.
I rarely get insulted by honesty. I’d much rather have a person be straight with me than lie or assume something about me. For that reason, I get a lot of weird questions that could sometimes seem insulting. Yesterday I was having a conversion with a woman I’ve known for almost half of my life about Clean & Lean. During this conversation I mapped out my plans for my company. She loved my ideas, and continued the conversation with a pertinent question. She asked, “Why does it take you so long to launch products and create new programs if you know what you want to do and you could easily use money from your personal checking account to do it”?
Admitadly when I first heard the questions I had a moment of anxiety. The kind that tricks me into thinking I’m not moving my business fast enough, I should be further than I am, and something “better” than I am. Those are my brains “go to” phrases when I’m anxious.
I hope if you’re a person that ever thinks you’re not moving fast enough, or not doing things the way the world thinks you “should” be doing them, you find some peace from this post.
After this woman asked me that important question, I had the opportunity to stop my brains natural desire to feel not good enough, and remembered why I do what I do.
I made a promise to myself and my family when I started both of my businesses. My promise: “I will not take out a loan (including from myself) or go into debt for any other reason outside of a family necessity.” To some that may seem like a very poor business decision. But for us, it’s worked.
Because of that last fact alone, I probably won’t ever be the person who impresses you with my “stuff”, and clearly I won’t be the person who impresses you by how fast I grow my businesses. When I feel like the world is passing me by, I stop and remember that I’m doing this for my family and to inspire others, not impress them. I’m OK with getting passed up as long as I stay in my own lane and I stay focused on my goals.
When you’re feeling like the world is moving faster than you, stop and take a breath. Remember why you started whatever is that you’re doing. There are people who need to hear your voice, and those people will be listening no matter how fancy you are, or aren’t. Those people will be there to support you even when others pass you up. It doesn’t take away from your success or your value. If you’re taking things slow to be at home to take care of your children, and you need to take things a little slower for now, be proud of where you’re at and the decisions you’ve made. There will still be people who need what you offer, when you have the time to offer it. This isn’t a race. Do what you need to do for yourself and your family now and be proud of what you’re doing. If someone else doesn’t understand it thats OK. Don’t be offended by what others don’t understand. Love where you’re at so much that it doesn’t matter what someone else thinks, says or asks.
There is something truly beautiful to me about slow controlled growth. For me it’s the kind of growth that offers the least amount of anxiety and the most time with my family.
Please don’t get me wrong. My husband and I started a million dollar business together and that business is strong and has a healthy future, but we didn’t get their overnight, and we didn’t get there by taking out huge loans or growing too fast for our britches.
In my opinion, the phrase “people over profits”, should first include your family.
My business does move a little slower than some. However, with both businesses, my husband and I have never had to take out a business loan or even dipped into savings, we have zero business debt or personal debt outside of our house and one out of five cars that we own. We have never had ANY credit card debt. We started our marriage 12 years ago debt free, and we have worked hard to remain debt free the entire time. Even when it means not having the nicest things or being the fanciest companies.
If I don’t make enough money from Clean & Lean to cover a new product launch, it just has to wait. For many entrepreneurs this is a concept that could lead to missed opportunities and lost business. But to me trying to be the biggest, the baddest, and the best while putting my families money on the line would cause anxiety.
On the opposite side of that, we’ve had three companies ask to invest in one of our businesses because they can see the growth potential. For us these opportunities seemed like a great way to make more money, but it would have also depleted precious time from our family. Since our family is at the top of our WHY list, those opportunities have always been rejected.
I’m not saying that you should do business or life the same way my husband and I do. I’m simply saying to be confident in the way you do life… business or personal. When someone asks you an innocent question that makes you second guess your core values, revisit them and feel good about reminding yourself that you are right where you’re supposed to be.
If you have a dream, follow it and never let it go. But don’t let the world dictate how fast you “need” to move, or what you “should” be doing. You should be right where you are.
Lastly, be careful. Appearances are not always as they seem. You may feel like you’re behind because you’re comparing yourself to someone else, but you have no idea what that persons real story is. Social media can make things appear a lot healthier than they are in reality. I can attest first hand.
I had a friend who made a lot of money. She got paid every Monday and by Wednesday the money was completely gone. She always looked good, drove a nice car, and has a beautiful home, but by Friday her financial anxiety was through the roof. My heart always broke a little for her because I felt like she thought she needed to do things for her audience on social media, or to fit into the “cool kids club” in the business she worked.
Here’s what I have to say about that… Take it or leave it… I won’t be offended. If you think that anyone is going to remember the pictures you post, or the stuff you show off on social media in 20 years, you are sadly mistaken. These “followers” and social media “friends” will be gone as quickly as they showed up. Love on people, inspire them, and try to bring them joy with your posts, but please don’t try to impress anyone with your “stuff” or status if you have to go into debt to get it. If you think someone is going to love you because of your awesome stuff they aren’t worth your time. Your value goes far beyond social media. And the people who matter the most don’t really care if you have the best kitchen or newest toys.
Do post, do share. Do inspire. Do share the things you’re the most proud of even if it’s your new car. It’s OK to be proud of who you are. In fact, it’s beautiful to be that. Just don’t get caught in a position of feeling like you need to do something outside of your means to simply impress an audience. It’s not worth it.
Be you and spend a little time loving where you are in life today. Spend a little time loving the family you have today. Try not to compare yourself to anyone else. You’re just where you’re supposed to be. It’s OK if someone is passing you up.
Join me for my next challenge where one of our three goals is to change our thought process and get out of the habits of caring what others think about us, and care more about what we think about ourselves.
Email me if you’d like to be added to the waiting list for our next class, I only allow 100 people and the list is already getting long. CleanAndLean@Oulook.Com