The Masters golf tournament I was watching was delayed by rain. A baseball game I went to last year was delayed by rain. And, my daughter’s soccer game last week was delayed by rain. Rain may delay the games we play, but in life there are no rain delays. Every second of every hour of every day we’re in the game! There are no timeouts, no substitutions allowed, and no rain delays.
We get up each morning and have a seemingly endless list of things that need to get done. Along the way our phone rings, we receive email, and people filter through our lives. There is so much we want to accomplish, so little time, and so many distractions. No matter how we feel or what is going on in the world, everything stays in motion, and we need to be able to anticipate or react where it is necessary. Time marches on, and you’ll get left behind if you are not prepared to take on both the challenges at hand, and the surprises that life will undoubtedly throw at you.
Here are three things you should constantly be involved with if you want to make sure you are prepared for almost anything.
Research has shown that less than 5% of Americans have read a non-fiction book since the last day of their formal education. The world is constantly changing. How many of you would have been reading this ezine 15 years ago? Probably none! If you don’t continue to study and learn, you will not keep up with new ideas, technology, and methodology. Your competition is changing. Studying and learning are critical in order to be able to adapt to both your competitions new initiatives as well as creating new direction for you.
Here’s a simple exercise. Look at your business and decide what you would like it to look like in two years. Now ask yourself, “What do I need to learn to be able to create the company I see in my future?”
Do you need to learn more about marketing, sales, leadership, communication, or management? What tools do you need to make your vision a reality? You can look at your life the same way. Maybe you want to be a better parent. What skills do you need to hone? Get the idea?
Your education should not stop when you finish school. Actually, that is when your education really begins!
It is not enough to just feed your mind. You must take care of your body as well. Being in shape means that you can move at a faster pace, that you are not constantly running out of energy, and that you feel your best.
You don’t have to run marathons, but regular exercise is important to stay strong and to help keep mentally sharp. Always consult a doctor before changing your exercise habits, but I find that I think with more creativity and with better reasoning when I’ve been exercising regularly.
Start off small. Even five to ten minutes of exercise will make a difference. A brisk 45-minute walk five times a week will leave you ready to take on the world.
3. Build Relationships
If you’re like me, you have a vision of your future. You have goals set for yourself both personally and professionally. There are doors you want to pass through. Most of those doors have locks on them. What I have found is that the key to the doors we want to passage through exist on someone else’s key ring.
Networking and building relations ships is critical to expanding your opportunities and building your business. The more people you meet and get to know, the more chances that you will build a bridge that will take you where you are looking to go.
Business partnerships come from business relationships. Sales, referrals, and even helpful advice all flow to the individuals you meet and develop relationships with.
I used to try and live life in a vacuum. I had my issues to deal with, my business to build, and my family to take care of. I was “too busy” to worry about meeting a lot of “new” friends and associates. Well, what I found out was that the new people that I met provided rewarding experiences, had information to share, ideas I could use, and ultimately helped me build my business and have even more time for my family.
Who are you meeting? What opportunities are you putting on your calendar so that you can network and build relationships? How do you follow up with someone after the initial contact? Your keys are out there to take and use to open those doors of opportunity. Go find them!
Live a life of continuous learning, exercise for better health, and build new and deeper relationships, and you will be on the road to Building a Better Biz!