We are given one life and the decision is ours
whether to wait for circumstances to make up our mind, or whether to act,
and in acting, to live.
~Omar N. Bradley~
Each and every day you make thousands of them. Many of your decisions, have few, if any, consequences, like what clothes to wear or what to eat for breakfast. Yet, other decisions have a big impact on the direction and success of your life and business.
With over 11 years in business, I learned to pay attention to this restless excitement that occurs in the pit of my stomach. Whenever I have this edgy excitement, I realize that this is an indication that I will learn something useful. When I say yes to the opportunity that’s presented it’s because, with my investment in myself or my business, I see what’s possible once I take action and make that investment.
Success is also built on a series of saying “no”. Saying “no” is useful, like when establishing boundaries. When a client was asked to reduce her rates with a particular book of business, she was initially conflicted. The book of business was profitable and provided positive cash flow. When her client requested her to lower her rates or to be part of a rebidding process, she carefully weighed whether or not to continue with that book of business.
Once she declined to rebid on this book of business, an interesting thing happened. Shortly after she said no, new and more profitable books of business opened up for her.
Saying no is a slippery slope. I mentor business owners who sometimes make a no decision when it comes to making a cash outlay or investment in their business even though they very thing they are saying no to is a solution to their problem.
In a world of immediate gratification, saying no can give you an immediate emotional release so understand what you’re saying no to. It may seem easier for you to say no to get something off your plate than to say yes; however, saying no only satisfies that immediate release but does not get your closer to your vision for the future.
While there is no magic formula for saying “no”, there is one key question that will empower you to align your decision with your vision for the future and for what is possible. It’s a simple question. I find the simplest questions can be the most empowering. What’s the question you can ask yourself when faced with a decision?
Is the decision I’m making consistent with my future or my circumstance?
The next time you’re faced with a decision to invest in yourself to learn how to do things differently or make an investment to improve your business, ask yourself, if you’re saying yes to your future or no because of your circumstance.