I have been participating in the Forum for Women Entrepreneurs E-Series program since January. It’s like a mini-MBA for women business owners. It kicks business butt. We’ve heard a variety of speakers on a variety of topics (see below for a listing with links).
What’s been a common challenge however is to find time to take what we’re learning and apply it to our own customized business strategy. I have a hunch for why it’s tough and why you may have the same trouble finding time to keep your head above the daily flotsam and jetsam of work to focus on strategy.
It’s because of the lizard. Yes, it’s the lizard’s fault.
The lizard part of our brain that is. We all have a part of our brain commonly referred to as the lizard or reptilian brain. It’s responsible for the basics: to keep us safe and alive. When we’re using that part of our brain, far from creative or strategic thinking, we’re focused on survival.
In today’s uber paced world it’s ‘safe’ to keep your head down, to not make waves, and simply focus on getting through the day. Our brains are programmed for just that. For a long time that’s how we’ve survived, putting one widget ahead of the other.
However, in today’s world it’s not going to get you leading any kind of energizing, meaningful life. That takes time, forethought and practiced attention.
It takes saying no so you can say yes to what’s important and strategic. It means taking care of basics – getting enough sleep and exercise, eating healthy and having loved ones to connect with. Once the basics are taken care of our lizards are apt to be satisfied and go to sleep, so we can sneak out and do the extraordinary.
I hurt my back recently and it took a long time to heal. Frankly it freaked me out. In order to take care of my lizard I’m headed to a rejuvenating yoga class tonight, and next week and the week after and so on. It’s not a luxury, it’s a necessity.
I need to keep my lizard happy so I can focus on strategy. And you? What does your lizard need so you can focus on what’s really important?
Here’s the aforementioned list of who has been giving workshops at the e-series:
- branding – Isabelle Mercier (Leapzone Strategies) and Sam Reynolds (Echo Memoirs)
- creative marketing – Mike Jagger (Provident Security), Lori Kliman (Cupcakes), Terry McBride (Nettwerk Records and YYoga)
- advisory boards – Judy Brooks (Blo Blow Dry Bar) and Bev Briscoe (Briscoe Management)
- building value in your business – Mark Wardell and Lisa Colls Simpson (Wardell Professional Management) and Queenie Chu (Kins Farm Market)