“I’m from Canada.”
I just LOVE saying those words when travelling in different countries.
I’m fiercely proud of Canada and grateful for the freedom and kindness of this expansive country.
A huge part of my heart is for California. Eleven years old the first time setting foot in that special place, I have lost count of the trips back since then.
California is the place where the biggest leaps in my business (and life) are borne. Each visit creates more and more learning in my life. The impact is exponential.
The last trip was almost two weeks with two professional development events: First, the live, three-day event “6-Figures on Your Terms” with Lisa Cherney and then a writing workshop “Writing in Motion” with Alexandra Franzen.
The icing on the cake was six days of sightseeing in San Francisco and Sonoma Wine Country. Yummy!
As I look back on the trip, a few things really stood out, lessons I think will resonate with you and your business.
Here they are, in no particular order:
1. Do a sneaker check wherever you are.
This is all about being in the moment. Wherever you are in the world – in your work space, with your kids, at the gym, out for dinner, at a professional development, etc. – take a look down and see where your sneakers are. Wherever they are, be there too. Have the fortitude to be there 100% in the moment.
2. Before every big leap is resistance.
One of my mentors, Henry Kimsey-House of Coaches Training Institute, likes to say there’s beauty on the other side of chaos. When you feel resistance or things feel messy, he says to rub your hands together and say, “Goody, goody… what’s here now?” Also, it’s natural to want to put a story on the resistance and try to figure it out. Before any leap, there is always resistance. Period. Another way to handle it is not to put a story on it and instead simply say out loud, “Isn’t that interesting?”
3. Good business means mindful spending.
I had six days to explore San Francisco. Usually I’ll stay near Union Square at the Powell Hotel. However, since this time I was traveling alone and staying for so long, I decided to stay at the USA Hostel, also near Union Street. Instead of being by myself in an expensive hotel room, I was surrounded by an international community of backpackers and plenty of well-organized tours and fun experiences. While I can afford to stay at a more expensive spot, intentionally staying at the hostel saved nearly $1,000 in accommodation expenses. Those funds can either be invested in a more strategic place in my business or simply kept on my bottom line.
4. Go slow to go fast.
One thing entrepreneurs need to juggle is taking time to reflect and envision the future while delivering service. You may feel there’s no time to slow down because you’ll lose money if you do. I realized the need to trust the inner knowing that I needed to stop and pause. It’s about going slow to go fast. Be conscious about where you’re going next. When things are moving so fast around you, the impact is you simply won’t see the juicy opportunities around you. It takes courage to go intentionally slow and do your work. The money you make will be much more meaningful when it’s earned doing what you love (and what you’re best at) with the people you really like.
5. Letting go is liberating.
At one point early in the trip, someone asked me this question, “What are you willing to let go of or get rid of to be congruent with who you really are?” This question is a zinger. And, this is exactly where the gold is! You’ll discover your own gold when you really look at this question and be real with yourself about what it means to you.
In my own business and life, I have a BIG vision for 2013. It’s exciting and scary, all wrapped into one. And, I know that if I keep doing certain things the way I am, my vision has no chance of actually happening.
I could put my head in the sand and pretend something magical will happen or I can answer that question and get real about what I’m saying “yes” to and even more importantly, what I’m saying “no” to. That “no” list is about 10 things. As I take action and free myself from each of them, space is opening up for my big vision to actually happen. And, that’s liberating.
Ahhhhh. California. Thank you for these lessons. I know many more are bubbling to the surface and will come out at the right time.
Canada, you will always be the country for me.
I have to tell you though, there’s a special place in my heart for California.
Let’s say I’m a Canadian California girl.
Until we meet again, California. I get to see you at least three times in 2013. If history is any kind of predictor of the future, it’s bound to be really good.
And, I’d love to know – my dear reader – what lesson resonated with you the most and why.
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