If You Had a Blank Slate (You Do) — What Would You Do? – Info Entrepreneurship
“Regardless of your past, your tomorrow is a clean slate.” — Zig Ziglar
The best way to think about your next big entrepreneurial move is to look at things from a completely blank slate. Kind of like the draft of this article when I first started typing. Nothing but blank space. The funny thing is, when I first started writing everyday, the blank page was daunting. When I launched my coaching business, it seemed impossible to know where to begin.
Maybe you know the feeling.
Now, it's liberating. Because I'm not encumbered by anything — there is a vast expanse of space to do whatever I choose. In other words, limitless creativity.
The question in the title of this post came directly from a C-level executive that I previously coached. I was there to help him think boldly and out of the box. This existential question got me thinking about how we can all think creatively and use this line of thinking to our advantage. It's such an important question — one many of us ignore as we move along in life and don't take time to ask ourselves.
As you've matured on your journey, what have you found? I've found that some people simply don't think it's possible to stop and ask the essential questions.
I'm here to tell you that it's critical to ask the very basic, formative questions because they enable us to work toward cultivating a beginner's mind, one that is open, free and ready to entertain new thoughts and boundless possibilities.
I'm often amazed when I coach and advise others but most significantly — when I advise myself — at what I come up with when I start with a beginner's mind. What I mean by this is, a completely open-minded, free of bias — or negative experiences — view at the possibilities in front of me. It's why I spend so much time focusing on the belief that we truly do become in physical form what the dominating thoughts of our mind are.
We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves. — Buddha
What we speak over our lives becomes our reality. If you're struggling to believe this, spend time in meditation, concentrated thought and prayer each day. Master the skill of autosuggestion to feed positive, empowering thoughts to your subconscious mind.
It's like pouring fresh, crystal clear spring water into a bottle of dirty water. Eventually, as you keep replenishing, you'll have entirely fresh water.
Finding the Time To Do Our Thing
If you had a blank slate, would you start in earnest to accomplish the goals and dreams that you've been thinking about each day, but ignoring because “you don't have enough time?”
What I've found most interesting about my life is that I've accomplished more when I've had less time at my disposal. I've had to work harder to build-in “me-time,” so I've been more judicious with the usage of my time. I've cut out distractions and negativity that formerly crept into my mind and led me down the road of procrastination or worse yet — sin.
During my early-mid 20s, I wasted an awful lot of time. Chasing girls, going out bar-hopping, mindless TV shows, video games, Internet distractions, you name it. There's a saying I picked up from a former Lieutenant Colonel that I worked with during my time consulting with the U.S. Air Force. It goes,“Youth is wasted on the young.”
I was that guy.
I had a lot of great ideas for startups and businesses that popped in my mind, fluttered about and quickly vanished. A great idea is only as good as the action that follows it. The best part is once we learn this truth, we're that much better to renew our minds at the beginning of each day and begin by taking ownership as the architect of any new plan we wish to design.
When we're young, the blank slate is flush with robust opportunities, imagination, possibility and the ability to pursue whatever we want. While I do believe that we can still do this as we grow older, there's no denying that it becomes more difficult. Families, children, bills, illnesses, additional life and career responsibilities increase.
So while it's wise to always make the best use of your time, whether you have lots of responsibilities or not, it's absolutely possible to be even more productive as we inherit more life and career duties. A Stanford University study says:
“As we grow older, we tend to become more emotionally stable. And that translates into longer, more productive lives that offer more benefits than problems…” — Source: Stanford Study published in Psychology and Aging
I believe there's a direct correlation between productivity and happiness — specifically when we have actively chosen and planned the productivity we are achieving.
Happiness comes when we're more confident in our abilities and direction. If you know what you want already, then you're that much farther ahead of the game. Then you can live in the world of focusing on how to get what you want. I believe that comes through experience — trial and error — as well as education, the observation of others and great teachers.
Prioritization increases possibility. Tony Schwartz, CEO of the Energy Project says the following,
“Force yourself to prioritize so that you know that you will finish at least that one critical task during the period of the day when you have the most energy and the fewest distractions.”
Determination and desire are the “fire” that each of us has deep inside. Weactivate these qualities by believing in ourselves, actually going out and doing what we say we're going to do, then becoming consistent by repeating these processes and backing them with persistence and a positive attitude.
Keep Asking Questions. Keep Going
A positive attitude has worked wonders for me, opening up my mind to believe more than I ever thought possible. It's led me to become a writer, to meet more people and to test my ideas in the marketplace.
I'm not even close to accomplishing all that I hope to in this lifetime but I know that I've found passions — things that I love that I also have skills for — that I will never, ever give up on. My mindset is one of adopting the belief thatperseverance will always overpower rejection.
Adversity is my best friend if I eliminate distracting emotions and harness my energy toward achievement and positivity. I take all of these qualities and re-assess where I'm at each week. Am I looking at my personal ambitions and goals with a clouded mind or a clear mind?
Think of things like you are operating from a blank slate. Then ask yourselfwhat you really want in both your personal and professional lives. From there, you have your answers about what you should pursue. All you need to do isput together a plan and stick to it.
Take the first step. Don't stop asking questions to others or yourself. The aggregate of the advice that I've received in the business world has been toalways question our current state and, to ask ourselves not whether we can improve — but how we can improve our future state.
How can we add skills to keep moving forward toward the path of being who we want to be — the composite of what we've written on our blank page? Only you can answer that question. It's best to begin right there.
Article Prepared by Ollala Corp