We often hear about entrepreneurs being incessant about working long hours, never taking a day off, missing family functions, and essentially not having lives outside their own minds, and their work. Many have asked me if all of that is true? Well, for the most part it’s not true. Yet, there is some truth. Sure, some of it is myth as people just love superheroes and the stories about their seemingly superpowers including being able to function on little to no sleep.
Well, let’s dispel right now that entrepreneurs are anything more than human. Let’s dispel the myths that they can function without sleep, without rest, without knowing when to shut down for a day or two. But what we can do is learn from what makes them successful by ensuring sure they have the freedom and flexibility to do what they want to do, when they want to do it. It’s all about being positioned to have choices.
Award-wining author and entrepreneur, Richie Norton says it best, “Entrepreneurs don’t have weekends or birthdays or holidays. Every day is my weekend, my birthday, my holiday. OR every day is my workday. Mostly it’s a choice.”
Strategic Coach is one of the world’s leading organizations focused on entrepreneurial success. Within their resource section of its website is a blog post, Putting the Focus on Freedom. Of all the information about entrepreneurship that I have researched and read over the years, the opening question and statement in this post has become, in my mind the foundation of entrepreneurship to me:
“Why did you decide to become an entrepreneur? For most entrepreneurs, the answer is freedom. They wanted more freedom of time, money, relationship, and purpose when they took the leap to starting their own business.”
Another great organization focused on entrepreneurial success is The Lonely Entrepreneur. What I love about this organization and the writings of its founder, Michael Dermer is the reality of entrepreneurship and the inner workings of an entrepreneur’s mind.
There’s an article on The Lonely Entrepreneur website that always comes to my mind as a holiday weekend is in sight, What is an Entrepreneur? Dealing with the Holidays. This particular statement is embedded in my mind:
“As entrepreneurs, we have enough stress throughout the year trying to win customers, bring on employees, raise money and sign deals with vendors. We may have enjoyed, or even taken advantage of these breaks in our “past lives,” but once you become an entrepreneur, we can’t understand how this ever made sense. Most of us also don’t understand how the world could be so insensitive to our eﬀorts by taking time oﬀ when we need to get shit done.”
I highly value both organizations and certainly, I respect both Michael Dermer and Strategic Coach founder, Dan Sullivan. I know that both strive to help entrepreneurs succeed. Both have approaches that make sense. Both speak and teach from personal experience and long distinguished careers of helping others succeed – thousands upon thousands! Yet, each comes from a different angle, so to speak. But I do appreciate that!
It truly has been a blessing and a privilege to have been exposed to both organizations. I have learned so much, and yet, have so much more to learn so I’m extremely grateful to see both founders’ continued efforts and commitment to entrepreneurial success. For me, it helps me balance perspective in my own work, and balance in my personal life.
Freedom. Choice. Balance.
Freedom is defined as the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance or restraint.
Choice is defined as an act of selecting or making a decision when faced with two or more possibilities.
Balance is defined as a condition in which different elements are equal or in the correct proportions.
Do you see where I’m headed with this? Are you wondering, what does freedom, choice and balance have to do with entrepreneurs and holidays, the basis and title of this article? To some it may mean nothing. To others, as it does to me, it speaks volumes. But what it means to you is the correct answer.
Have a great day (and weekend). Make it happen. Make it count!