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I was asked by the Socially Shared Network to contribute a guest blog to their website, and after much deliberation, I managed it! Here it is:
“Perseverance is when you fall down 19 times and get up 20” – Julie Andrews, apparently.
This was on a key ring given to me by a fellow small business owner when I announced that the Amethyst Centre was finally going to be A Thing and open on 1st September 2015. Believe me I thought I knew what perseverance was, having gone through the mill over the previous 9 months trying to get this place off the ground, and finally succeeding at the cost of my personal pension pot. But I had no idea that I’d learn so much more about perseverance and myself in the next two years!
I learned about myself, that I needed to treat myself like I would treat my own best friend. If I sat at home in the evening trying to write the script for the phone call that would inform my landlord that I was bailing out and would he kindly collect the keys from me, I learned that that script should actually read “Now Chris, you’re really tired and you’ve had a busy day, but you’ve made it here and you need to rest now. It will all be better in the morning”.
I learned that the first and most obvious solution is not always the best.
I learned that “experts” don’t always know what they’re doing.
I learned that there are so many women out there who are inspired by what I’m doing, that they are trying to emulate me and set up their own businesses.
I learned that my own resources were almost always capable of being extended to cover the emergencies.
I learned that everything I have ever done in my life – from playing with my dollies and talking to my “imaginary friends” when I was 5, to joining NYR Organic and going on all their free training – is useful when running my own business.
I learned that there are many different ways of showing your support for a loved one.
I learned that you don’t grow your own business by focusing on someone else’s!
I learned that there are plenty of people after my money!
I learned that I am so different today to the person I was 10 years ago, when I was just starting out as a therapist with Pandora’s Box Healing.
I learned that the grey hair on my head is just the steel in my backbone proudly displaying itself to the world.
And the most recent thing I have learned can be summed up by the phrase used by The Abundance Coach, Ed Lester: When you do “strong things”, you get stronger. In other words, your strength is developed by carrying on and not giving up. The more you do this, the stronger you get. It’s sort of developing your strongness muscle, by using it and testing it. But strength is also developed in the resting period, and I am grateful for those, which are now getting more and bigger.
In days to come, surely I will have new opportunities to develop my strength. I have big plans for The Amethyst Centre, and I know roughly what is required of me. I am still completely daunted by these plans! But the answer to “how do you eat an elephant?” is “One bite at a time” and that is how you grow a business too. I’m grateful to the Socially Shared Network for all its support over the last couple of years, and I look forwards to taking some of you along on my journey over the next few years too.