The Unexpected Consequence of Running a Business

by Lauren Schneidewind on January 8, 2016

A great deal of time and effort goes into deciding whether or not to run your own business. For myself, I thought I planned for everything, even knowing that I was planning for the unexpected. However, there was one consequence that caught me off guard. I was prepared to work hard, have cash flow concerns, and be prepared for the tough business decisions, but I was not aware of the personal journey I was embarking upon.

Self-Awareness

In my thirty some odd years on this earth, the past two years have been the most profound from an unexpected personal awareness standpoint. Quite honestly, I thought I had already done that. My early 20’s were learning about what not to do, my late twenty’s were spent finding what I wanted to do. My early thirty’s were learning to become content with my choices (not settling, just accepting what I am working for) and solidifying who I am as an individual. However, when I started this Entrepreneurial journey establishing LD Studios, I have had to become even more self-aware than I believed possible.

When making the day-to-day decisions, I come from the primary standpoint of a business owner that wants to remain in business. This means, I have to look really deep into what I can bring to the table every single day. I have to make personal assessments constantly, is this worth my time…effort…money…sanity…etc.…? I often contemplate, should I invest in learning this new skill or should I outsource this to someone more capable? I constantly have to look within myself and understand my strengths and weakness, truthfully. This skill is not about being right or wrong; it is about bringing the best to the table as all times. Sometimes this means I do not have a place at the table, which is okay.

This takes strength and willpower to admit, Hey, maybe I am not as good as the person next to me. A wise beyond her years artist, Taylor Swift, once told her good friend, Selena Gomez, “if she believes she is the smartest one in the room, then she is in the wrong room.” This is true with running a business also, if we feel this way at any point, then we might need to change our mental location. Steve Jobs might argue with this concept, but I am not Steve Jobs. I am a small business owner that wants to not only remain in business, but also excel in my industry.

It has taken me many years to realize this, but I love not being the smartest person in the room. Being in this room would have made me sick to my stomach a few years ago, similar to how I feel now giving a speech to my peers. I used to feel the need to be the best at everything I did (For all of us that know this mentality, it is exhausting and never-ending). However, understanding and accepting who I am and what I am capable of created the confidence to be the dumbest one in the room and thrive.

By taking the time to truly understand who I am, what I can do and accepting that sometimes I don’t have what it takes, but I know someone that does, can be indispensible when running a business. At the end of the day, the thriving business is what is important, not me constantly trying to know everything or believing that I ever will. I have no doubt that LD Studios would continue to grow into a dream lifestyle business that lets me live in Roatan and dive at Coconut Tree Divers whenever I desire, all because I became more self-aware.

What was an unexpected consequence of your career? Disagree with what I have to say, let’s start a conversation!

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