February can be quite cold and dreary in DC. If I had to pick a month to skip, it would probably be this one (sorry February lovers)…
Fortunately, it’s short, and I’ve learned to “hack” my way through by using the month to clear up inconsistencies in my meditation routine––which supports clear, peaceful, and strategic thinking. This year, I’m working through Tara Brach’s Mindfulness Daily material. I share this with you because interwoven through the content of this edition is the concept that how you think matters, and attending to your thinking consistently is critical to success and happiness.
Science and medicine support this assertion, as you’ll see in my interview with Dr. Julie Lopez, author of Live Empowered!: Rewire Your Brain’s Implicit Memory.
You can also see how perspective comes into play when you view today’s economic stats. Whether they appear devastating or ripe with opportunity to you matters, too, as it could have an impact on the decisions you make. I also talk about a setback I had recently and how I thought it through.
I hope you enjoy our February edition and if you know of anyone who might appreciate what we are creating here, feel free to share. They can subscribe here.
But what if you think about these numbers through a different lens? What if you think about the opportunity you have to make a difference? If you’re at all in a position to do so, now––the first two quarters of the year––is the time to stretch and hire talent.
This is the time to play offense and use 2021 to secure business growth opportunities as the pandemic hopefully subsides. I decided to pull the trigger and search for several key hires recently, including a Chief of Staff role. Admittedly, it felt a little early to make such a decision, but when I did the math on how long it would take to interview, onboard, and ramp up, I realized hiring now meant my new team member could be productive by Q3.
Here are two tips for embarking on the hiring process:
Don’t overthink the job description. Write it up the best you can and put it out there.
Be flexible. A great hire comprises the traits you envisioned for the position––and a unique perspective, shaped by their own knowledge and experiences. As a result, you may have to shift the original image you had to account for qualities you hadn’t pictured previously. That “sync-up” between the person and the role represents the alchemy that will ultimately lead to success.
If you’re looking for a fast read on hiring, I recommend Who by Geoff Smart and Randy Street. Unlike most hiring books, this one isn’t overly complex and provides quick, yet meaningful insights.
When I graduated high school, I went on an adventure traveling the world. I didn’t quite know what I was looking for, or what would make me happy in the long run, but during that process, I was able to get a greater sense of what *wouldn’t* make me happy—which sometimes is just as valuable.
I shared these thoughts and plenty more on a recent episode of the Driving Force Podcast with Chase Rosa, where we discussed my journey finding happiness, my experience coming out, and how my path led me to my various business ventures. Find it in the comments!
Dr. Julie Lopez is a licensed clinical social worker and the author of Live Empowered!: Rewiring Your Brain’s Implicit Memory, a comprehensive primer on implicit memory—those stored memories we don’t actively recall, but that affect our thoughts and behaviors. I interviewed her about the different types of memories our brains and bodies process, and we discuss how those memories affect our mental health, sometimes creating roadblocks from illogical places that hold us back from reaching our full potential.
This is an interview every entrepreneur (and human) should watch.
I had a setback on my Stoney Creek Farm project this past month. We are working to bring a 66-acre farm that has been operating as a countryside B&B into the future––and it’s been complex. We could have done a better job of bringing the neighbors along with our vision, and as a result of that oversight, we got hammered at our first public meeting. A couple lessons have come from that experience, and I thought I’d share them here.
First, it’s ok to take a moment when things don’t go according to plan and be present with the emotions that show up. I felt pretty down for a few days after the meeting, and questioned why I had taken on this project in the first place. But rather than letting that line of questioning balloon into an existential crisis, I allowed myself to be with my feelings. That helped me keep things in perspective.
Second, once I felt as if the wave had passed and my emotions were more balanced again, I realized the inspiration I felt at the outset of the project was still alive and well. So, I got to work, adjusted the plan, and began moving forward. This past Friday, I hired a local project consultant to help with community engagement.
I think the progress I’ve made in spite of these recent challenges has been possible because I play the long game. I place short-term setbacks in the context of a broader vision, thereby reducing the jarring effect of what can feel like defeat––at least in the moment.
So, how do you shore up your vision, and what long game are you playing to realize it?
Naturally, I also highly recommend Dr. Julie Lopez’s book, Live Empowered!: Rewiring Your Brain’s Implicit Memory. I promise it’ll change the way you think.
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