One Sided Business?
I’m not sure whether you’re anything like me, but I’m the sort of person who is pretty ‘all or nothing’.
Part of it is just my personality which I’ve learned to embrace. But there are other parts which have become quite unhealthy in the past. Being SO obsessed with something (or even someone) that other things don’t get a look in.
I know I have that tendency. Which I guess makes the fact that my word for the year is ‘balance’, a pretty good idea.
I mean most of us GET balance, right? We hear phrases all the time like ‘work AND play’ or even down to the food we eat – we’ll talk about having a ‘balanced’ diet.
Well the truth is, somewhere along the line, my understanding of God didn’t get the memo.
After deciding to re-commit my life to the Lord at 21, I fell hook, line and sinker. Which meant that even though I was LIVING above my church at the time and studying the Bible very regularly, it wasn’t enough for me. I was hungry for more.
Which meant that I went searching online for books, resources, sermons etc – and what I was met with and drawn to was a very conservative theology (which I still appreciate to the this day for the most part, by the way!)
Now these Theologians would spend a lot of time talking about ‘carrying your cross’ and ‘humbling yourself’ but wouldn’t talk much about the ‘life to the full’ promised to us in Jesus and the goodness He longs to bless us with right here on earth.
This, of course, meant that I started to think along these lines too. I would be able to quote you a passage on wrath or suffering far easier than I could one on the blessing which comes from the hand of God or the conqueror I am in Him.
This inevitably meant that when anyone spoke about God wanting to GIVE me something or to BLESS me, I was uncomfortable and uncertain.
I jumped to the predictable ‘prosperity gospel’ line too quickly and perhaps even hurt people in the process with my strict and somewhat religious views.
Now don’t get me wrong, I STILL listen to some of those Theologians from time to time. I respect the way they handle Scripture and am truly grateful for the gift on their lives. However, I’ve also come to love and respect the teaching of other pastors who I’d have previously tarred with the ‘prosperity preacher’ brush without even giving the message they teach a second thought.
So, am I telling you all of this to somehow suggest that I am now ‘right’ and my theology is perfectly balanced? Of course not! We’re all on a journey, right? And I’m personally thankful for every lesson learned.
So why AM I telling you all of this?
In the online space, I am seeing more and more of a particular message being shared as though it is the ONLY truth about entrepreneurship.
Now if I burst a couple of bubbles with what I’m about to share, I’m okay with that. Because honestly, I’d rather that than have you continually be fed one side of the story. I know firsthand how damaging that can be. And sometimes not even damaging – instead, just not FULLNESS. And who wants that?
It’s like having dinner and thinking it’s pretty good - fine. But how annoyed would you be, knowing that you’d been kept in the dark about dessert for all those years beforehand?
So here’s the deal…
You’re hearing about how EASY everything in business can be. About how there is no ‘should’ and you can make money while you sleep.
But the picture that’s NOT being painted however, is the one of the hours of hard work which have been put in to allow that place to be possible.
I’m not saying that burning the candle at both ends, not looking after yourself and getting zero sleep is the right thing to do and it’s certainly not the way to build a sustainable business. But let’s not share these half truths about ‘laptop lifestyle’ and lull the unsuspecting observer to buy into THAT without knowing about anything else which came with it.
Because here’s where it becomes a problem…
You go to launch something you’re really excited about – you feel sure about it and if you’ve even looked at your ‘numbers’ and worked out that statistically speaking, there should be a certain percentage of people who will enrol. But truth be told, even without the numbers, you’re in LOVE with your idea and can’t wait to share it with the world.
So day one, you go full force with your live streams and your emails and whatever else. Maybe one or two sign up and you’re EXCITED. “It IS easy after all.” You say to yourself.
And then a couple of days later, you’re not noticing those same numbers, you’re not getting any more sign ups…
And despite having a week or more left of your launch, you decide that “it wasn’t right after all.” And pull the plug.
Because it was meant to be easy, right?
Before long, you’re questioning whether this ENTIRE business venture is even for you and you start looking for other opportunities which you know you don’t align with.
It’s time to stop with that.
It’s time to embrace the ease and flow and to thank God when that’s what’s happening. BUT it’s ALSO time to embrace the fact that sometimes you’re going to be required to be RESILIENT, PATIENT and ultimately operate from a place of TRUST that if God has really brought you to this place, He will continue to bring you through it.
No more quitting. No more throwing pity parties. No more changing lanes every 3 minutes.