This week taught me some LESSONS. Whew.
One I want to touch on today you can file under the category of "being too hard on your/myself".
Story time: Last week I set a goal to enroll 8 more people in the BUILD coaching program for next year.
By Friday I had enrolled exactly zero new people...cue sad violin music.
So...I gave up. Kind of.
I let off the gas for sure. I stopped pushing, stopped the outreach that wasn't working, and protected my fragile ego by focusing my time and presence with my wife and kids. It's easy to feel like a "winner" in that part of my life - I'm a pretty great dad and an awesome husband, most of the time...
By the middle of this week I had started to do outreach again, messaging people, posting about the opportunity, etc. I was frustrated by my results and that I let that frustration affect the way that I was showing up.
Here's what happened: I started measuring the crop while I was planting seeds.
Now, it's not necessarily the right time of year or season to be talking about planting or harvesting, but stick with me here.
There is a season...
Our businesses follow a similar pattern to the seasons of the Earth. You plant in the spring. Tend your crops in the summer. Harvest in the fall. And hope that you planted and harvested enough to get you through the winter.
In business, there is a season for planting. For building. For creating the foundation that your business will be built on.
Then you have to shift. You can't just plant seeds all day long. At some point you have to change your actions, change your goals, shift your focus and the mission in front of you. You've got to start preparing in different ways. You focus more on systems and optimizing and tweaking to get the best result possible.
Then it's time for the harvest. You can call this selling, or scaling, or whatever, but you have to shift your mindset again. You're in a different season, and if you don't change the way you approach your work you're going to miss out on the harvest completely.
And whether or not you did everything right, winter inevitably follows. There's no seeds to plant because it's the wrong time. Everything has already been harvested, so you have to do something different. You have to get scrappy. You have to survive. You have to stay in the game.
Because after winter comes spring. And the cycle repeats.
Don't Measure Your Harvest While You Plant
Which season is the best time to measure the results of your hard work? Spring? Summer? Fall? Certainly it can't be winter...
Just as there is a season to plant, there's a season to harvest and to see the results of all of your hard work.
If you measure to soon you'll always feel like you failed.
Imagine counting your crop two weeks after planting your seeds in the ground. You'd never do it because it's so blatantly obvious that your seeds need time to take root, do grow, and to start producing.
The same with your business. You have to take time to build. But not too long, because you don't want to miss the next season.
You also don't want to stop planting because the crops aren't magically popping up out of the ground minutes later.
There are many things in business that take time, and we need to have the patience and the perspective to give that time freely. Only when it's time to measure should we switch to that part of the process.
Two things you can do if you experience this as well:
- Realize what season you're in in your business. What activities go along with that season?
- Focus relentlessly on only those tasks, and make the other things wait for their time.
Thanks for reading today, it means a lot.
I'm going to do everything I can next year to help artists and creatives grow their businesses - to plant the right seeds, to do everything they need to tend their businesses so that they can grow and start producing amazing results.
I'd love for you to join me. You can see the details at build.craftsmancreative.co