Musings Episode 84: Running in Place…

Happy Sunday.

Hope everyone’s having a great weekend.

No fancy intro needed here today – let’s just jump right in.

Musings Episode 84: Running in Place…

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You’ll remember last week’s episodic musing where I talked about having guts over fear and just getting whatever it is you want to move forward with or start done.

Reason being is because it’s better to start something than to just entertain the thought and never start at all.

Some of you may already be doing this, and that’s good.

Others may still be on the fence.

There’s two types of running in place. I think one of them is more frustrating than the other, but they can both be a thorn in one’s side.

The first, is keeping everything in your life the same.

Living “one day in seventy years,” my great uncle used to say.

This is how most people are.

You have a job, a routine. You wake up, get ready for work, grab a quick breakfast, go to work, have a drink with friends, come back home, watch TV, go to bed, wash, rinse, repeat.

Some have families and do a similar cycle.

I call this the hamster wheel, or rat race type running in place.

You complain, but never get annoyed enough to slip out of your comfort zone and make change.

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Photo Credit: Philip Haynes

Then you have the second type of running in place.

Or perhaps, it’s a perceived running in place.

The kind where you’ve already started towards something you want to get accomplished, but it feels like you’re going nowhere.

Maybe this is self-perceived. Maybe you’re your own worst critic.

You get a lot accomplished, cover a lot of road, but somehow, at least in your mind, things feel stuck. The speedometer is stuck on slow and no matter how hard you press your foot to the pedal the damn thing won’t go any faster.

You have a schedule, unlike a routine, and things change and progress from day to day, but it never seems to move fast enough.

There’s a similarity with both.

I think this is the side of entrepreneurship that no one really does a hard sell on.

The side most would rather have you not know about.

The side you’ve got to deal with after the motivation and excitement have long passed.

When you’re working a business, there’ll be times you never really feel satisfied with what you’re doing – in the sense that you never really feel satisfied with what you’re accomplishing.

People may feel the same way when it comes to a job, but there’s a difference.

The similarities in the two are just purely the dissatisfaction.

But the key difference is the source of dissatisfaction.

In the context of a job, someone could be dissatisfied with their pay, their boss, their work hours, or the higher ups not taking notice of their work.

In the context of a business, someone could be dissatisfied with the effort they’re putting in, their oversight on an idea they come up with later, their inability to turn into Superman and work around the clock with zero sleep.

I think the former is a dissatisfaction that centers around other people and their approval of a person.

While the latter is a dissatisfaction that centers around yourself and your approval of yourself.

There’s a certain drive that separates entrepreneurs from desk jockeys. Something that separates entrepreneurs from the pack.

Management in companies want this drive in each and everyone of their employees.

The job advert that screams “we want entrepreneurial minded people! Driven people! Motivated people!”

Yet they fail to realise that in the context of a company, that’s a double edged sword.

You’ll have people that have drive, but that doesn’t mean they’ll be submissive and obedient.

You can’t have someone driven and submissive. They’re opposite qualities.

 

It’s where sayings like “sheep get slaughtered and wolves eat” come from.

You may get certain people that are sheep masquerading as wolves, but it only lasts for so long – until they’re willing to crush someone else’s throat to appease their “boss,” in hopes of climbing the corporate ladder.

So really, their sheep masquerading as wolves, but really coyotes in their nature.

When you come across a real wolf, you’re really just playing with fire.

Both types, sheep and wolves, have hopes and dreams. Both start out as motivated and driven. Both take different paths when it comes to progression.

It’s only one that’s easy to control with smoke screens and carrot on a stick incentives.

The feeling of running in place may happen with both, but here’s a message to the entrepreneur:

You’re building your dream. Not some manager’s. Not an executive board’s. Not a company’s. Yours.

Learn to be objective with yourself. Take a step back and look at the progress you’ve made. Use timelines if you have to.

By doing this you’ll realise just how much you’ve moved forward – and if you haven’t moved forward, well then you’ll realise just how much more you should be putting in.

It’s a weird thing to have to deal with. Businesses are like a watched pot. It never boils until you take your eyes off it and step away.

Then sometimes you come back and realise it’s boiling over or you’ve let all the water boil out.

There’s a delicate balance to be maintained.

Step away, then come back.

When you’re in a car, going 90 mph doesn’t seem like a lot.

But when you’re watching from the side of the track, that same car going 90 mph seems like it’s zooming past you.

Learn to be in the driver’s seat and on the sidelines sometimes.

It’ll make things feel a lot less like you’re running in place.

As always…

Stay awesome.

– Rego

Improve Your Lifestyle. Improve Yourself. This is Life. This is Rego’s Life.™

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