Are you looking at the track or the wall? By Sandy Geyer.
It is fairly common knowledge that racing car drivers are trained not to look at the wall when tearing around a circuit at high speed. Why? Because they go where they look. We all do subconsciously and “don’t look down” might also sound familiar in this context. Where we look has a lot to do with where we find ourselves today. More importantly, understanding this intuitive reaction can make all the difference as to where we find ourselves tomorrow.
The majority of entrepreneurs are not in touch with their “wants” and this manifests very clearly in their results. There is a significant reason for this breakdown. We all have ingrained mental programming that goes back to our early development as we learned to understand the meaning of words. The most consequential word we came to recognize early was the word “No”.
“No” is a very understandable response to a newly mobile little person intent on discovering every available manner of injuring themselves. As parents we all understand the necessity of saying no - and our intentions are good- but it’s an unfortunate start to a child’s psyche.
This negative programming continues throughout our childhood development as in most cases our needs are fulfilled ahead of our wants. This parenting supposedly teaches us to strive harder for what we want but it often achieves the opposite, and ultimately renders us completely useless at identifying our wants with any conviction. In my business seminars, I often ask my audience to write a list of what they want. I do this because I want them to look at those wants, the first important step to attaining them. The reaction, across culture and nationality, is very similar and involves a lot of head scratching, shifting uncomfortably and grimacing uneasily. Very little actually gets written down!
Yet ask a three year old at Christmas time what he wants and his world comes alive with endless possibilities. The difference between the three year old and the adult is that the three year old still believes he can have what he wants. The adult has had that belief de-programmed and has been successfully taught to provide for his needs only.
When starting a business we often set it up to cater for our needs, and in many cases, this is all that we achieve. Anyone who feels as if they have “bought a job” might recognize this situation.
The major difference between the entrepreneurs who make enough money to survive and those who achieve a successful lifestyle lies with what they focused on, and where they were looking, before they took their first entrepreneurial step.
Sandy Geyer is an entrepreneur and mentor and teaches the principles of entrepreneurial intelligence (EnQ), to entrepreneurs in New Zealand, Australia and South Africa. You can visit Sandy’s website at www.enqpractice.com