I have a small wooden decked balcony where I live. The wood gets dried out and thirsty, so twice a year I get the teak oil out to take care of it.
First I vacuum away any bits - leaves, dirt and suchlike. Then I take a damp cloth and make sure the wood is clean. I leave it to dry. Then I take my cloth and work the teak oil into every bit of the wood. I leave that to dry overnight and then do the same again the next day. Like I said, the balcony's small, but it's a job that takes a while. But I like working with my hands and the end result gives me a feeling of satisfaction.
But it's not really my balcony I want to tell you about. Obviously.
If you want something to last. If you want something to function as it's meant to. If you want to get the maximum possible use out of something - you have to take care of it. You have to give it what it needs, as regularly as it needs it.
It's true for balcony decking, and it's true for your mind.
In all the time I've been running my business, I've seen over and over and over again in both my own experience and that of my clients that the thing between where you are (and where I am) and where you want to be (and where I want to be) is a state of mind that's not being properly tended to and taken care of.
I'm not saying it's your fault. I'm not saying you're a bad person. I'm saying that at some point, if you want to truly achieve what you say you want to achieve, you're going to have to make a conscious commitment to taking care of your mind. Every single day.
Because your mind is like the decking. You can't oil it once and then expect it to be ok forever. It needs regular attention. And if you forget about it or ignore it, it will get thirsty and it will dry out. And then it will crack and break and...well, you get the idea.
Mind, like body, needs fuelling every day, with the right things. So if you find yourself constantly struggling to move forwards. Constantly struggling to get a grip of things. Constantly struggling to make things work - first take a look at how you're taking care of your mind.
What are you putting into it every day? What are you reading? What are you watching? Who are you talking to? Who or what are you listening to? What are you telling yourself? What are you doing to work through negative beliefs or thoughts?
Are you surrounding yourself by the people and things that inspire you to believe more is possible? Who motivate you to action? Who call you out on your moaning and complaining and whining until you've got nowhere left to hide?
What are you consciously doing, day in and day out to take care of your mind?
And if the answer to that is nothing, and you're not quite where you want to be in business or in life, it's a good idea to start. It's something I'm putting a lot of focus on right now because I know that if I want to take my business to the next level (and of course I DO want to take it to the next level) then I'll have to take my mind to the next level first. Like everything else, it's about making a powerful commitment to doing the work.
Some of my daily mind care-taking activities are:
- Journaling - I use this to help me work through the chaos in my mind and reconnect to my vision and goals every single day.
- Meditation - 20 minutes.
- Yoga and / or some other form of exercise. (You can keep it simple and doable by using YouTube for home workouts or walking up and down lots of stairs. Use what you have. Don't make excuses.)
- Reading blogs of people I admire who are at a level beyond where I currently find myself and who never fail to motivate and inspire me.
At the end of the day, it's just this:
To get where you want to go, focus first on your mind. Pour love and attention on it as if your life depended on it. Feed it. Oil it. Vacuum away the dirt and the leaves and the dust. Do this, and it will take you wherever it is you want to go.
Love and courage,