Mindin’ other people’s business seems to be high-toned
I got all that I can do just to mind my own
Why don’t you mind your own business
If you mind your own business, you’ll be busy all the time.
-Hank Williams Sr.
For those of you who may be new to EntrepreneurGarden, you may not be aware of the fact that I recently added jogging to my list of things that a grown man should do in a feeble attempt to grab hold of his slipping youth. I can honestly say that the past few months have been a roller coaster that have included moments of triumph and shame, but through it all, I’ve attempted to keep a firm grip on my determination. Just as important as determination is the ability to focus. It has been a challenge - but I’m getting better.
This past Saturday, I decided that it was time for me to put myself to the test. I needed to see if all of those early morning runs had finally started to pay off. I rolled my 35 year old body over to the side of the bed, sat up on the edge and decided that “today is the day”. A few weeks prior, while on my jog, I saw a sign at a local park for a 5K run that was coming up. Now, that day had arrived.
As I arrived at the park to register (yes, I waited until the day of just in case I decided to punk out), the mood was festive and people were already warming up, stretching - the whole nine. Immediately, I started to feel kind of intimidated by what I was witnessing, and I had to tell myself, “Mind Your Own Business”. I couldn’t allow myself to be absorbed with how other people were going to run their races, but I had to instead only be concerned with how I was going to run my race. I had no idea what other people had done to prepare for this race or how many races they had run in the past - but I did know how I had trained for this, my first run.
In business, sometimes we get so distracted by what everyone else is doing that we forget how to run our own race. We start watching our competitor’s feet and how they’re moving, and how fast they’re going and we forget all about the work that we have put in training because now we’re trying to keep pace with someone else… and that is a recipe for disaster. Our breathing is off, out steps are sporadic and our rhythm is unnatural - all in the name of competition. In reality, we are actually setting ourselves up for a tremendous loss.
There were times during my run when there were volunteers on the side of the road who were in place with dixie cups of cool water to provide refreshment. There were people who were there to point direction, and there were even a few people along the way who were there just to cheer us on and provide encouragement. These were people I had never seen before and will never see again. But there were two constants the entire race. My wife and youngest daughter were there at the starting line. They were there at the halfway point. They were there near the end. And they were there waiting for me at the finish.
As you’re building your enterprise, you too will have people that you meet along the way who will want to do whatever they can to help you grow your business. There will be the ones who are there to provide a temporary push to get you to the next level, and those who will be able to actually invest in your success. Hopefully, there will also be a few who are there from start to finish along the way cheering you on, providing the motivation you need to pick up the momentum when you start to feel drained - people who are just as involved in your race as you are.
Along your journey, there will be hills and valleys, places were the road is broken (and competitors who run right by you). But you must keep running. Be comfortable with the fact that you will finish - maybe not when you originally planned to… but in due season. Find the strength within to stay in your own lane, running your own race at your own pace. Mind your own business. Turn the music up in your headphones, get in the zone and JUST RUN.
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