Many years ago our family began the formidable project of building a new home. Acres were purchased and what had once been a pear orchard would someday become the place our dream home would set.
When our (well researched) builder came to me saying we needed to design the kitchen, I didn’t even understand what he meant. Hadn’t we done all of that work when we designed the house?
“Look, Scott, you’ve built a lot of homes, I’m sure you’ve got this. Build me a beautiful kitchen. I promise I’ll love it.”
The same thing happens every day with business owners. People that are the dreamers and the doers of this world. They are a specific breed of humans that create wealth and build the economy. But like a cook in a kitchen she didn’t think through, a business can become a burden when it’s not created thoughtfully.
There's this little thing I've discovered I call "The Law of Specificity", and it applies to our health, relationships, to our homes, and most definitely to our businesses. When we get very clear on what it is we want to create and step into the daily crafting of it, with thought and clear intentions, our business will fit like a glove.
This "Law", is all about getting very specific with what you would love to experience. When you define how many hours you want to work in your business, how much travel you want it entail, how much value you want to bring into the world, is typically what you’ll get. Anything less leaves you shooting in the dark at a target you’ve never even seen.
As a coach to business owners, artists and homemakers, I’ve learned and taught the essential steps on designing, with specificity, the life and business that will make you come alive.
First you must define, “What experiences you’d love to have in your life?” It’s a weeding out question. Asking what you, the creator, would love, precludes others expectations, it raises you above, “What do I have to do?” and takes you to a place where, ultimately, you get to play at your work. If ever you feel ‘stuck’ in defining this for yourself, it’s incredibly useful to ask, “What do I not want”. This simple question has the power to stimulate new ideas of what you truly want.
To that point, a client once laid his business plan out beautifully to me. I began taking him through the process of specificity, asking questions to help him discover better where he wanted to go.
“So you enjoy traveling for work,” I asked?
He got very quiet. In all his dreaming and planning, he never really given any thought to the fact that his business plan would require him to travel far from home (What he didn’t want). With a wife and young children, it went against his core values, and he redefine his desired experiences.
Second, envisioning what you would love and writing down exactly what that would look like puts a pin on the map to where you’re going. What does your office look like? What are the smells? Where do you travel to, and what kinds of people do you enjoy spending time with? Who do you love to serve?
What we focus on expands. It’s a known fact that Vision Boards are an excellent way to train your brain on your new reality, so that your brain does what it does and “attracts” this newly found experience you want to create for your life.
Third, fall in love. When you’ve written it all down, when you’ve gotten beautifully specific and know exactly where you’re headed, fall in love with your vision. Imagine you’re there, read what you’ve written as often as possible, and utilize that vision board.
Unlike falling in love with a person, you get to change your vision as you progress. With specificity as your guide, you’ll find some of your original ideas about your business have changed and you get to change them!
Fourth, take action. “Vision without action is merely a dream. Action without a vision just passes the time. Vision with action can change the world.” Joel A. Barker
Once you've defined the vision, wrote the vision, put pictures to the vision, and have fallen in love with your vision, it can seem daunting when it’s time to “make shit happen”. Your new vision can make you feel as if you have to eat an entire elephant in just a few bites. Questions pop up like, “Where do I begin? How do I get there from where I currently am? How can I acquire that life?”
The truth is there are a gazillion different ways to “make shit happen”, and at the end of the day it boils down to determination and consistency, no matter what method you use.
I recently read The Compound Effect, Jumpstart Your Income, Your Life, Your Success; by Darren Hardy – the publisher of Success Magazine”. It’s apparent Darren knows a thing or two about achieving success, and he teaches that when you take small steps every day, and remain consistent day-after-day you have no choice but to achieve the success you’ve defined for yourself. Before you know it, the elephant you set out to eat, is digested, and what remains is the blissful experience you’ve created for yourself. (And a whole lot of life lessons.)
The thing is, the business you’re building, is a living thing. As my friend Berny Dohrmann says, "Let it change and grow you, as much as you grow and change it." When you allow yourself to get specific, define, visualize and take action you’ll know without a shadow of doubt when your opportunities arrive. Because you’ll recognize them and seize them because you know them as well as you know the back of your hand.
As for my loathed kitchen, my husband and I have embarked on building yet another custom home, and this time, I know just where I’ll put the stove, the dishwasher and the pantry, I know where my latte machine will reside, and you can be sure I will cook there to my heart’s content.
If you’re ready to define your life with Specificity, connect with me at MichelleYoungCoaching.com for a complimentary session.