I was speaking to a business owner just this morning, and we were talking about the trials and tribulations of being a business owner, and I wanted to hear his take on it. What he was telling me was like, “Doug, in our market, it’s too difficult to get new customers.” See, he was a local business owner, and what he was telling me was in his town, which happens to be Bend, Oregon, it was different. The trials and tribulations that he was facing are different than everybody else throughout the country.
Now, ironically, the night before I was talking to a business owner in Santa Barbara, California who told me the exact same thing. They said, “Doug, you know, in Santa Barbara, it’s so competitive and it’s expensive, and our dollar per square foot, and our triple net, and all of these issues that business owners face.” They were just too hard in Santa Barbara and would be easier anywhere else, had they shut down their business and start somewhere else.
Same conversation with Ben. And then of course three days before that, I had a conversation with somebody in Boston who told me the exact same thing. So, what I told each of them is what I’m gonna tell you, and we’ll relate this, is challenge your assumptions, right? They assume that the challenges they were facing, the obstacles, the hurdles, or the problems they were facing, were unique to them because of their geographical area. When I explained to each of them that it possibly, or the possibility that it wasn’t, I said, “Hey, consider the possibility it’s not your local market, and it’s just the way that you’re marketing, or it’s the way that you’re running your business.” Once they actually took on this possibility, they accepted it, and we talked about ways that it could be the same versus actually being as unique as they thought. It really opened their eyes. You could see the sparkle kind of regain its strength within their eyes and their passion come back in.
They had used this assumption, this excuse, that it was the local market that was the problem and not them as business owners. They weren’t looking at their digital landscape, they weren’t looking at their offline marketing. They weren’t looking at were they or weren’t they innovating products and services for that matter.
Now, when you think about assumptions, these come up in all the areas when I’m coaching somebody. Now, whether I’m coaching a high-level business owner, an executive, or somebody else, these assumptions just come out. The lenses through which we see the world.
So, what I want you to do is challenge your assumptions today. You know, we’re coming up to the end of the year. What assumptions have you held on? What I recommend doing is grabbing your journal, write out your five to thrive. Your mind, your body, your soul, your relationships, and your business, and write down your assumptions. Just be open, honest with yourself. What assumptions are you making in those categories? Are you assuming that you can never play sports again? Are you assuming that because of your age, you’ll never be able to run a 5K? Are you assuming that because of your age, you can’t lose weight, or because of your job, or whatever? What are these assumptions that you’re making in your body? In your mind?
I’ve talked about it before. I have a client that I’ve worked with who told me, “Doug, I just can’t learn. I can’t read.” He made these assumptions that it was just easier for everybody else, and that reading wasn’t something you could just learn as you got older. Not true at all.
Then relationships. Don’t we make assumptions about our partners, and about our friends, and business associates all the time? Not realizing that people change over time, and maybe our assumptions are just plain wrong.
So, what about business, right? We make assumptions, as I told you, these three separate business owners that are all focusing on local markets were all complaining about the same thing, except for they were saying, “I assume it’s my local market, and everywhere else is gonna be so much easier.” Not true at all.
So, where are you making those assumptions? Where am I? So, I want you to consider the possibility that we make these assumptions in every area of our life, and just try that on for a second. See how that feels. Then once you discover these assumptions, you can actually just smile and laugh at them, and write new facts about your life. New possibilities that you can live into.
That’s it for me today. If you like these conversations and what to go much deeper, remember, we are opening up the Author of Your Own Story University again February 1st. Make sure you get on that waitlist. It’s only open to the first 100 new enrollees. I want to make sure you have a seat right in there. Also, go to authorofyourownstory.com, get on our newsletter so you can get the tips, tricks and techniques delivered right to your inbox each and every day so you can just keep up with what’s going on in the Author of Your Own Story community and what we’re up to. But also gives you just another chance, just another way of up leveling your life.
And of course as always, what I want you to do is go out and inspire someone simply by being the author of your own story. There are more people watching you and paying attention to what you’re doing than you know, and you could be the example. You could be the catalyst for their change and their growth.
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