(This article about how to be a Resilient Mompreneur was originally published in Mompreneurs Magazine, March 2018)
Many people believe that the need to be a resilient mompreneur is saved for huge life moments like someone you love passing away, being diagnosed with a disease or climbing Mount Everest.
In fact, the most important kind of resilience is the kind we practice every day as we face a constant montage of obstacles. As women, and especially if you have the honor of having children and consider yourself a resilient mompreneur, we tend to have a high threshold for juggling conflicting priorities that come with running a successful business and balancing a fulfilling family life. Client deadlines, difficult contracts,unreliable team members, and unending exhaustion are only some of the biz challenges you may be facing.
Without a proactive plan to become a master at every day resilience – or as I call it, being a Resiliency Ninja – you will find yourself feeling overwhelmed, cranky, and less successful than you want and deserve to be.
Resilience is a vague term and how to achieve it can seem even more unclear, so here are some ideas to become a super resilient mompreneur - or even if you're not a mom, like me who is just a puppy-mom, you can use these ideas to grow your business with less overwhelm!
Master these and you can operate from a place of joy, confidence and control, no matter what challenges fly your way.
When trouble happens it’s natural to let the imagination cloud reality and exaggerate the issue. You lost a prospect to your competition; that doesn’t mean your entire business sucks. Bills are piling up; that doesn’t mean the right sales activity won’t fix your finances. You gave a bad speech; that doesn’t mean you’re a horrible speaker and will never get hired again. (I know this to be true!)
Instead of feeding into the emotional embellishments, write down exactly what you know about the situation. It’s likely not as dire as you feel it is. When you look at the facts, it’s easier to be resilient. This technique will also help you stop worrying. Worry destroys your resiliency muscles. If you fi nd yourself pondering fictional stories about how the future will unfold and believing your fairy-tales, then grab a pen and paper and answer the question, “What do I actually know about this situation that is factual?” Then fixate on those facts instead.
Stress, obstacles and adversity are on a sliding scale of challenge. Eliminating stress is a process. Stress is primarily an attitude and expectation that you place on yourself to do too much, in too little time, with too few resources. Learning to say no and setting boundaries – well, that takes some coaching!
On the opposite end of the spectrum is adversity which is a catastrophic external force that will forever change your life’s perspective. All you can do is choose activities that serve your healing because it’s impossible to change reality.
But obstacles – those are my favourite!
Because you CAN find solutions. There is always a way through, around or over obstacles in life and business. Need more sales? Easy. Need to minimize chronic pain? It can be done. It just takes a little creativity and optimism to fi nd the right answers that will work for you.
Continually comparing your internal reality to others’ external image will crush your hopes for joy more than any other habit. Not only is comparison toxic for your confidence, it takes your attention away from doing what matters most for you to succeed.
A coaching client was being really hard on herself. When we started working together, she would vent about how embarrassed she was that she wasn’t making more money like others do. It quickly became clear that she was minimizing her success (she actually had been doing quite well!) because she felt she didn’t measure up to other Mompreneurs who seem to have massive momentum. Once she stopped focusing on others, she found a newfound joy and confidence that allowed her to further build her business.
Everyone has their own path. You do you.
There is plenty of business to go around and with an abundance mindset, everyone’s success can be celebrated! You never know the truth behind a public image.
When I get overwhelmed, my natural tendency is to retreat and do nothing. From there it’d be easy to slip into victimhood, but I constantly remind myself to choose to be a Resiliency Ninja. That’s why I’m so passionate about teaching resilience tools. I know how diffi cult it can be to resist the easy route to defeat.
The hardest part in a difficult moment is remembering that you have the power to shift your energy. In my book Married My Mom, Birthed a Dog: How to Be Resilient When Life Sucks, there’s a chapter called From Funk to Fantastic (and a short video when you follow this blog link) that I find myself re-reading and practicing often. In it I share ideas on how to shift your juju using a personal mantra or a physical prompt (mine has become FU-CHAAA) that brings back your confidence, motivation and swagger in an instant.
Blast the music, make a snow angel, do a cartwheel,play with your dog, snuggle your kids – whatever it takes, change your position, strike your most inspired Suuper-Staaar pose and remind yourself that you are an incredibly talented woman and you’ve got this. You don’t need to feel inspired to do something – just take the first step in a project and let momentum take you from there.
Feel compassion towards yourself.
Being a Resiliency Ninja doesn’t mean that everyday is amazing. Challenges happen, and your first reaction may be self-judgment, anger or numbness – that’s okay. There is value in honouring your negative feelings and embracing them, so they can be appropriately processed and released.
What matters is how long you stay at your pity party;it’s best to keep an eye on the exit for a fast getaway. Anytime you feel sorry for yourself, remember you have the power to shift your energy, resist victimhood and choose to be a Resiliency Ninja.