We often think, and talk, about the ‘health’ of our business strictly in financial terms - the money coming in exceeds the money going out = healthy business.
Your profitability is, obviously, really important. But I think we, the entrepreneurs, soulpreneurs, the one-woman-all-singing-all-dancing-stage-shows, can fall into the trap of losing focus on the broader health indictors within our business.
How does your business make you feel? How much joy, pleasure, enjoyment, satisfaction, energy, exuberance, peace do you get from doing what you do? How much space does your business create in your life?
Sometimes, when I’m bogged down in my bottom line and the profitability hustle ‘my business’ starts to take on an ‘otherness’; it becomes this entity that lives and breathes and takes up its own space. An entity that has the potential to swallow me up and absorb me completely into its ‘other’ being-ness.
I almost start to give ‘My Business’ the status of a false idol – something that needs to be fed and tended to and requires me to give, give, give in order to keep ‘it’ happy and healthy, aka profitable.
(I find myself saying things like ‘I’d love to come to coffee/lunch/girls night out/yoga but my business just needs a lot of attention at the moment.’
So dumb, right? Even writing the words sounds insane, but those words – exactly those wanky, ridiculous sounding words – have actually come out of my mouth.)
It’s awesome when you’ve got lots on, when things are busy and business is booming. But working your butt off without keeping an eye on the bigger picture of WHY you’re working like a mad woman isn’t sustainable because, I don’t know about you, but just doing it for the money just doesn’t do it for me!
Getting away recently gave me back the perspective that I’d lost in the crazy few months before I went on holidays. (The luxury of time can feel so decadent when you’ve been stuck in busy-mode for so long.)
Thinking about the health of my business (and therefore the vast majority of how I spend my life and where I invest my time and energy) in a more holistic sense drew me back to my ‘why’.
Why I decided to take this crazy leap and do my own thing.
Why I love doing what I do.
What it is about working for myself that I love so much.
And that reflection was SO SO what I needed because, confession time, I’d really lost sight of my WHY.
Financial worry has the ability to become all encompassing really, really quickly. And when things are busy, and bills need to be paid, and the holiday season expenses start tallying up you’ve gotta have a way of maintaining that perspective; of trusting in your broader ‘why’ and acknowledging that you get SO MUCH more from your business than dollars in the bank.
That’s why I developed this little Holistic Business Health Barometer. It’s a quick and easy process that I’ve introduced to help me check myself before I wreak myself with a narrow focus on finances.
This health check will open up your peripheral vision, drill back down into WHY you started this crazy journey, what you’re aiming to achieve in LIFE, not just in business, and, most importantly, how you want to feel each and everyday when you sit down and do what you do.
So here it is. Use it as regularly as you need to; it can be a weekly, monthly, quarterly or ad hoc practice to touch-base with the overall health of your business.
And you know what, if things aren’t so shiny right now, that’s totally ok. Knowing what isn’t working, knowing where you can improve is the first step to fixing the problem!
If you’re a little bit of a measurement geek like me, you can track your ratings to get a picture of your business health in an ongoing way ;P
Download your work sheet now! If you find this health-check useful, share this post with a friend who might also enjoy it :)