When I was growing up there weren’t many female entrepreneurs to relate to.
The only one I knew was my mother. She was June Cleaver and Mary Tyler Moore (when she was in the Mary Tyler Moore Show) wrapped up in one!
My parents owned their own business and my mother was a great example of a female entrepreneur. She dealt with customers, scheduled appointments, ran the business while raising my sister and I.
It’s because of my mother that I learned to type. My mother had attended a business college and said as long as I could type I’d be able to make a living.
Growing up my jobs did entail using that skill. As I started my first business over 27 years ago having that skill enabled me among other things to start my own newsletters (yes back then I was creating newsletters) and sales letters. Having that skill has also made it so much easier for me writing my first book: Sexy, Savvy And Successful – A Woman’s Guide On How To Start A Business, Gain Financial Freedom and Buy More Shoes! which I dedicated to my mother and daughter. It’s also helped me as I write my new book: “Communicate to Connections” as well as create blog posts, articles etc. See mother knows best!
So what does this have to do with the Big C? Well in April they found out my mother had cancer. Pinpointing it and getting it resolved has been a strain to say the least.
Finally the day came for surgery. I spent the better part of the week in the hospital with my mother. Along with my husband and father we wanted to make sure she knew she had our love and support.
We joked about me having my “mobile office”. While my mother rested or slept I was able to get my laptop out and work on my various projects. That’s the beauty of being an entrepreneur. You can work on the go! It was also nice to be able to talk to my mother about something other than the Big C.
As I sat in the hospital it made me think of a lot of things.
If you’ve watched any of my videos you know I always relate them to what’s going on in our lives and how it can be applied to our businesses. The Big C is no different.
I’m going to share with you what I mean.
There are so many lessons we can learn from the Big C not only in our personal lives but also in our business life. After all our business in many ways is a “living, breathing” entity.
We know the “Big C” (cancer) eats away at the person in one way shape or form. Sometimes the “Big C” can be silent. You go to the doctor to have yourself checked out. You’re given a clean bill of health but deep down you feel something is wrong. You can’t put your finger on it and neither can the doctors. You in turn need to become the expert.
You start charting the way you feel. The things you eat. You start to really listen to what your body is telling you.
In other words you become proactive. If you don’t then sometimes a family member becomes your advocate. Your voice. Your support.
You then seek the help of a doctor who will actually listen to what you are saying. He will answer your questions and help you get the tests done that are necessary. You need a plan of action.
When you have the “Big C” you have to fight. Fight for survival, for your very life.
Nothing stands in your way.
I’m happy to say my mother is a fighter. At the age of 81 she came out the surgery and is doing really well. The one doctor looked at me and said “we can’t believe how far along she is in the recovery process” Needless to say the doctors are amazed at how well she continues to do. All this progress for someone who just had about 3/4 of her stomach removed. That’s my mother. Strong and resilient.
I’ve seen some truly dedicated nurses in the hospital. I can clearly see who loves their job and who doesn’t.
I can also pick out the doctors who are there to serve their patients.
So you might be thinking “what in the world does this have to do with my business”?
As I mentioned I’ve been in business for over 27 years and in that time I’ve helped and seen a lot of business owners deal with the “Big C” in their business. No it’s not THE cancer but it is a form of cancer. It’s an erosion that sometimes takes place over time. It’s nothing they can put their finger on. There’s just a feeling that something’s not right. Something is missing.
For those who ignore that “voice” it can spell disaster because by the time it becomes obvious it’s too late. Their business is failing to the point of no recovery.
Those that listen to that “voice” are able to get the help from competent “doctors” which may be in the form of a business coach or mentor.
Through a series of “tests” (evaluations) they can help you see what you can’t. They can guide you in how to fix what is fixable or help you see what changes you need to make. You can than plot out a plan. A plan for your business to get well.
Just like the right doctor listens to your concerns the right business coach listens to what you are saying. Hearing the things that you don’t even realize you are saying.
The goal of your business coach much like the doctor is to get rid of that cancer that’s eating away at your business. Cutting out the parts that are causing you the pain.
There are alternatives. There are fixes to help your business survive.
Don’t ignore those signs in your personal life or in your business life.
Do what needs to be done to fix it so you can come out victorious, so that you can be a survivor.
Did I ever tell you about a fellow photographer I read about? He knew the digital age was here. There was no doubt he had to change his marketing, his approach. Sadly his refusal to change became his Big C. There were many who tried to give him helpful advice to save his business. In the end after about 25 years in business he closed up shop.
I don’t want that to happen to you. I know it takes strength, determination and courage to start your own business. So I’ve created a tip sheet ( 10 tips to know if you need a coach) for you to see if you need a coach or mentor. It’s worth your exploring your options. Get the tip sheet here.
My hope is that no matter who you go to just take action and “save” your business if it’s in failing health. Fix what’s fixable.
I would love to hear your thoughts and comments below.
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By the way this video reminds me of my mom.
Be Savvy And Successful!
Toni Nelson – Creator and Producer of The MINE System of Learning – Author, Business Coach