There is value in taking a pause to evaluate your business and life. After all, if your business is not congruent with the life you want to create, then it is time to rethink. Tracey Pontarelli helps you in this episode. She lays down eight essential questions that will guide you to transform your business and life. Introspective and retrospective, Tracey’s questions will have you evaluate whether you are in a place that best serves you. Join in and discover these questions so you can start pivoting!
Listen to the podcast here
Change Your Business (And Life) With These Eight Essential Questions – Part 1
I am going to do a two-part series right now with 8 questions, so 4 each time, because I like these to be short and sweet for you all. I know you love it too. I know you love being able to do these in little bits and pieces. These are eight essential questions to transform your business and your life, because as you know, they’re all intertwined. If you’re not doing a business that is congruent with the life you want to create, time to rethink. This is from a special series that Tim Ferriss does that’s called Insights. It is highlights of different people that he loves. He has taken some people that he loves and asked them to send them some of their best stuff. He has put them all together into little podcasts.
I love that he did this. Tim Ferriss does great content. He also has limited time himself, and he wanted to make sure that he was sharing with his audience stuff that he finds valuable. He put four different recordings together and gave them to us. Back to the point that you don’t need to create original content. You need to offer value. You don’t need original content, you just need to offer value. That was just a side marketing note, and we’re going to get into it. I’m going to do the first 4, and then we’re going to do the next 4 in the next episode.
Who Are You Spending Your Time With?
Number one, who are you spending your time with? This is such an important question. We are the result of the people that we’re surrounding ourselves with and the things that we’re listening to. There’s no way around it. We are social creatures, subject to emotional contagion. Those are great quotes I heard from somewhere else. We catch what other people are putting down. If you are not being super careful about who you are letting into your energy, you are subjecting yourself to whatever it is that they’re putting out. I’ve had people make fun of me about me protecting my energy. I don’t care if you are bad juju, you’re not getting in here. My friends know, the ones that are reading, that if I love to spend time with you, you can’t get away from me.
I’m going to give you some more things to think about here on this question, “Who are you spending time with?” Are you spending time with people who are averaging you towards where you want to go? Or are they averaging you away from where you want to go? Or are they keeping you exactly the same? Which might be a good thing for you. You might want to stay exactly the same. My guess is for most of us, we are all looking to move forward because that’s the direction we’re going in life. If you stay exactly where you are and falling behind, who are you seeking to spend time with? Who are you reading and listening to? They’re going to make us worse or they’re going to make us better, or they’re going to keep us just as we are.
What Is Up To You And Not Up To You?
That’s number one, who are you spending time with? Number two, are you separating what is up to you and not up to you? This is an essential life question. I find when I’m aggravated, it’s usually because I am choosing to focus on something that is not up to me, or I’m not doing something that is up to me that’s out of alignment. I’m going to read you a couple of the notes from here. In life, you can break everything down into what is up to us and what is not up to us. You start to realize that so much of the time and energy we spend in life is on things that are not up to us. Like you’re stuck in traffic or someone cut you off in traffic, or someone you didn’t like got a promotion at work. It’s not up to us.So much of the time and energy we spend in life is on things that are not up to us. Click To Tweet
The stuck in traffic and people cutting us off in traffic, these are the ones that I’m always amazed at myself when I get aggravated. It doesn’t matter and it’s not up to us. Do you waste your time on whether or not it’s up to you? When you worry about the weather, when you’re really upset about the weather, it’s raining, my day gets ruined when it’s raining. Are you spending time getting upset about the weather?
We’ve all done this. What you are in control of is your response to any situation. It is raining. My plans are canceled. My train is delayed. I am going to be late. How do I react and respond in those situations is the only thing that’s in my control. Getting myself wound up about what I cannot control is a waste of my energy. This is my favorite quote from this, ask yourself, “Is this up to me or am I throwing good energy after bad against something that’s not in my control?”
Do You Want To Be Known For Great Things, Or Do You Want To Do Great Things?
Number three. This is a good one. I don’t think I said this in the beginning, sorry. This is Ryan Holiday. If you haven’t heard of Ryan Holiday, the guy is brilliant. He’s got a great podcast. He studies the stoics and he’s encyclopedic. He’s inspired by people that are knowledgeable on a topic. He quotes a lot of people. Question number three, “To be or to do?” That is the question. Do you want to be someone known for great things or do you want to do great things?
I’m going to give you an analogy. My husband works at an investment bank. He does something called impact investing. It’s really inspiring. He works on investments that have a great impact to the world. He had been off doing this on his own. He had left his firm that he had been at for a number of years. He wanted to go do something on his own. He had been there for a long time. He was building this fund on his own. When his old firm came back to him and said, “We are launching an impact fund, and we’d like you to come back in.” It was a decision like, does he want to continue to build this thing that he was building on his own? Or did he want to go back in and do this inside the company?
The question I asked him was, “Do you want this to be your thing that you built, or do you just want to make sure it happens?” Instantly he said, “I want to make sure it happens.” The answer was clear that the way to make more impact in his impact fund would be to go do it inside of this other firm. That is one of the many reasons I love my husband. Do you want to be known or do you want to make an impact? We live in a world right now where a lot of people want to be known and where people have shows for just being known, and they have no impact.
I do understand wanting to be known and recognized, but if that is your only goal and you’ve lost what you want to do as an impact, you’re going to get distracted. It’s amazing how much you can accomplish. I know you know the quote, “It’s amazing how much you can accomplish if you don’t care who gets the credit.” How are you measuring your life? What’s motivating you? Is it the extra compliments on social media or is it making a difference in the world? This is important for us on social media.
A lot of people who read this show are social sellers. I always tell my team, “It’s great to have the followers, but the most important thing is how many people’s lives are you impacting?” Those happen in conversations and providing value. It doesn’t matter how many, it just matters the service. Obviously, you don’t want to be a pushover. You want to defend yourself and stand in your priorities. Sometimes, we can get so caught up in defending ourselves and being right, and having our point of view that we can lose sight of what we’re really here for.
Frankly, when we go back to, “What are we giving our power to what matters?” The opinions of other people are not really the point. The point is to make a difference. I watch many athletes that I admire that ignore the press and go do their thing. They go show up, and they do their best. There’s a great quote that says, “If you play hard for the team on the front of the jersey, you’ll be remembered for your name on the back.” I love that.
We’ll go into the next couple round of questions in the next one about what really matters to you. Getting clear on what matters gets you out of ‘to be’ and into ‘to do.’ Your why and what matters to you right now changes as you evolve. Maybe when you started, you had a different purpose, and now you’ve grown out of it and there’s something else, and you’re still doing it for whatever reason.
Last one, and then we’ll do the next one in the next episode. This is a good one. When you are worrying, ask yourself, “What am I choosing not to see right now?” There are two ways to look at this. Another great way to ask this question is, “How am I giving my power? Am I giving my power away to this?” I like this flip of the switch because we can say, “When I’m worrying about this, what am I not seeing? I’m looking over here and I’m worried about this. What am I not seeing that actually is a better use of my energy and focus? What am I choosing not to see?”
When we’re worrying, we’re taking our eye off of what our ultimate goal is. Let’s just say, for example, your goal is to get into conversations with prospects about your business opportunities. Let’s say you’ve got something big that you’re launching, and you want to invite people to it. Your goal is to have as many of those conversations as possible. You start to worry about how many people haven’t responded. That ‘how many people haven’t responded’ is not going to help you get into more conversations. What’s going to help you get into more conversations is getting into more conversations.When we're worrying, we're taking our eyes off the ball. We're taking our eyes off what our ultimate goal is. Click To Tweet
So sitting around and worrying one person sends you a snippy reply, and now you’re worried about that one person instead of all the other people that are waiting to hear from you. They’re just waiting for you. I love this little cue for you. Emotions are like signals in the car when something is wrong. Your emotions give you a clear indication that something is off when you don’t feel good.
If you start to see the emotions not just as unpleasant, but actively distracting, because even though we’re going to have negative emotions, we’re only compounding them by doubling down and continuing to worry. That’s it. Let me run these through. This was Tim Ferriss’ Insights. It’s a bunch of different people in the episode. It is Ryan Holiday.
What Am I Choosing Not To See Right Now?
Number one is, “Who are you spending time with?” Number two is, “Are you separating what is and is not up to you?” Number three is, “To be or to do?” Number four is when you are worrying, ask yourself, “What am I choosing not to see right now?” That’s it for today. Tell me what you thought of these. Which one resonated with you the most? I’m dying to hear. I love you to pieces. I’ll see you back here next time.