It's vital to your business sustainability, but it doesn't stop there. You get to (and I'd argue, you have to) define your own version of success for your whole life.
Of course we all know this on some level (it's one of the few upsides of adulthood!), but I was recently struck by how easy it is to allow your surrounding culture to shape what you value, and thus, what you think you "should" do.
As I read Homeward Bound
(which I talk about in detail here
), I was struck at how quickly something we start for fun (knitting, cooking, gardening, decorating our home), can quickly become full of expectations and "shoulds."
For example, if you've ever cringed while buying something you *could* make, or looked askance at a mom who stopped at fast food instead of giving her child a home-cooked meal, this is an example of a perfectly happy value becoming an unhappy expectation.
When you craft, cook, and garden because you truly value it and you really WANT to be spending your time doing it, it's an awesome thing.
The trouble comes when you do it because you think you should. Because you think you're a better person because of it. And when you start to beat yourself up over not doing it.
What scares me most is how insidious these expectations are and how they shape our life and actions without us even noticing.
So whether your expectations are related to what you should be hand-making or your expectations are about where your business should be, take a minute.
We're going to get those expectations out of hiding (where they're silently judging you) and get them right up front, so you can decide which ones you want to keep.
Get out a piece of paper.
Set a timer for 5 minutes.
Start writing: What SHOULD you do?
What should you do to be a "good" person? A "good" parent? A "good" business lady?
(Whether you agree with it or not, write it down!)
Now, I bet you have a ginormous list. Take a break, but over the next 24 hours come back to your list and think about each thing. Do you really value that? If not, mark it off.
This won't clear all those "shoulds" out of your head for good, but it will give you a clear look at what's bumping around in your head, pressuring you.
If the holiday season is bringing up it's own pile of shoulds + to-dos, I bet Holiday Sanity
can help (whether you have a business or not, whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah or Solstice or not.) It's a sanity-saving guide to help you get all of your projects out of your head and onto your calendar.
Wishing you a sane, should-free week,
Oh, and if your family has anything to say about you "should" do? Keep this in mind
PS. Today I'm sending a special (huge) discount on the Starship
to everyone in the Early Boarding Party. If you're considering joining, you should sign up here