Outside of my business life I write Ann’s Running Commentary. Over there I write about the mental side of endurance sports. I often write about the lessons learned while running, biking or swimming. I talk about the lessons I have learned through challenging myself with long, scary races and how we can all apply those lessons to our everyday lives. It should not be a surprise then that my mind wanders to lessons learned as I start this new business venture.
Lessons Learned from Dave Cornthwaite
Several years ago, while writing for Beyond Limits Magazine I had the pleasure of interviewing Dave Cornthwaite. Dave was in the midst of yet another adventure and I was keen to find out how he had gotten to the place where he could go from one big challenge to another. He shared his story with me, telling me how he had found himself working an unfulfilling job during the day, coming home to play Xbox until it was time to go to bed and then starting all over again the next day. Finally, finding himself fed up with this life he decided on his first adventure, skating boarding across Australia. It was that first step, that first adventure that led to the life he leads now, going from one adventure to another and sharing each adventure with a new team of people.
This is a story I share with friends and strangers alike. It is a story I took to heart, a lesson that meant something to me. You don’t have to be stuck in the life you have now. You can choose the life you want to lead.
Losing the Plot
But somehow I lost the plot. Sure Dave could pack up his house and head out, he had no dependents. No life partner, no children, no mortgage even. It was easy for him. One day maybe I would do the same thing.
My Adventure in Business
Interestingly, it was not until I started Ann’s Social Media and Marketing that I realized my mistake in this lesson. Saying yes more doesn’t have to mean to some far flung adventure. It doesn’t have to be giving up everything. It just means saying yes to the things that frighten you.
I cannot begin to tell you how afraid I was to quit my job and start Ann’s Social Media.
What Scared Me?
Failure. Of course it was failure that frightened me. Who isn’t afraid of failing? But having taken the step, hanging my shingle, I realize this was the step I was meant to take. I wake up in the morning thinking about the client I will be meeting to teach how to more efficiently market her business and I get excited. I know I can help small businesses and that is an adventure worth taking.
Saying yes more doesn’t have to mean giving up everything. Instead it can mean taking that next step. It is seldom the longest journey that frightens us. It’s that first step, that first bite of the elephant. After that, anything is possible.