How to create an unstoppable business (by making an unstoppable you)

Today was one of those days everything went right! I got to the gym early and had a great workout, I hit all green lights on the way to the office, there was a nice referral lead in my inbox, I heard from a client that an employee situation we talked through worked out fine. I felt like Midas — like anything I touched today would turn to gold!

resilience quote

But not every day is like that. Last week I was sick with a head cold. I didn’t want to get out of bed, my dishwasher broke and my car wouldn’t start. Last week almost every day I felt like I was jinxed, like nothing I tried to do would turn out well.

What’s the difference? I’m the same me — but one day I’m king of the world, and another day I’m a goat. Is it just that the world was “nice” to me on one day and conspiring against me the next? Is there anything I can do to keep the confidence I feel today, even on days when things don’t all go “right” for me?

Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t — you’re right. ~ Henry Ford

As someone who’s self-employed I’ve come to realize that maintaining my confidence makes a huge difference in my productivity and the outcome of the work I do. When my head is in the right place, I’m unstoppable. My new business appointments go better, I’m sure I can help the prospect and they feel it and hire me. I ask for higher prices gain confidence not to accept less than my full rate. My team members don’t question my direction; they are more likely to just jump in and get stuff done. Confidence affects everything I do, and improves the outcomes of whatever I’m working on. Because of this, I think it’s worth thinking about how to improve my business confidence, and how to maintain that positive attitude that can propel my business forward.

Do you believe that your attitude or confidence is something you control? Or do you feel like it’s more likely something that “just happens” when the stars align? Taking control of your attitude, your confidence level, is one of the most powerful things you can do to influence your success or failure.

I am a great believer in Luck. The harder I work, the more of it I seem to have. ~ Coleman Cox.

I don’t want this to sound like some kind of “think your way to success” claptrap. But there’s actual evidence that it’s true. Harvard professor Rosabeth Moss Kanter wrote a whole book about it!

resilience quote

Her conclusions aren’t earth shattering, but they do help us to find a path toward creating and maintaining our confidence. She discovered that teams or businesses that have experienced a series of wins are more confident. Winning begets more winning. So set yourself up for some victories. Set lots of small goals and recognize progress! This morning I went to the gym. I stepped up to a new weight level on one of the machines I use. That’s a win, it feels good. I started my day on a winning streak! Now to keep that going I’m going to make a to-do list and cross things off when I complete them. More winning.

Second, you need to work to maintain that confident attitude. There will always be things that happen in your day or week that threaten to throw you off your game. A key employee quits, a proposal gets rejected, you get a speeding ticket; these are all “bumps in the road”, but they can take a toll on that confident attitude. Resilience is key to keeping your confidence high in the face of these setbacks.

Resilience is the belief that things are going to get better and the ability to make and execute plans that help you respond to adversity. So instead of asking “Why did this happen to me?” a resilient person asks, “What does this make possible?” or “In the face of this, what do I need to do to get back on track?” Resilient people aren’t just born that way, they cultivate that ability by building a strong support network, spending more time looking forward than looking back, and taking care of themselves by getting enough sleep, exercise and fun!

“A positive attitude may not solve all your problems; but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort.” – Herm Albright

The best part about maintaining your own confident, resilient attitude, is that it’s contagious. You can pass it along to your team. When you keep your confidence high, when you plan around obstacles instead of letting them stop you, your team starts to do the same. We see this all the time in sports, where a team “leader” gets on a roll and the whole rest of the team starts to feel unstoppable. What would your organization look like if the whole team had more confidence and resilience?

For the rest of this month we’re going to explore these themes of building and maintaining your confidence and the confidence of your team. Let us know in the comments how you build your confidence. What makes you unstoppable?

Photo credit: Unsplash

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