Just 12 days ago the world celebrated the close of the London 2012 Summer Olympic Games, and I don’t know about you, but I found the stories behind many of the featured athletes to be totally awe-inspiring.
Every story shared gave glimpses into the blood, sweat, and tears that go into becoming a world class athlete and performer. Every athlete spoke of the commitment, sacrifice, and persistence required to attain their level of success.
And when asked about their “key” to success, every athlete spoke of their vision for becoming an Olympian. They explained how their vision drove their efforts, kept them going when they felt like giving up, and helped them believe they could achieve the dream in their heart.
Every Olympian who received a metal, far before a metal actually hung around their neck, had visualized themselves performing flawlessly. They envisioned themselves standing on a podium ready to receive their reward. They imagined themselves living life as a winning Olympian.
They had a vision that guided their life, influenced their actions, and created their reality.
They had a winning perspective.
And that is what we are talking about today.
The 9 Ps of Profit
Last week I took shots at some common business training perspectives when I exposed the ugly truth about blueprints, systems, and success kits. I think it’s one of the most important articles I’ve ever written, so I hope you’ll take some time to read it.
In that article, I promised to share nine principles that will give you the clarity you need to apply your God-given talents, skills, and interest to a business that exists for good and for profit.
I’ve called these nine principles the 9 Ps of Profit, and today we are going to look at our first P which is…you guessed it – perspective.
Now just to recap, our 9 Ps of Profit work together to help us run a business for good and for profit. I created this visual to help you understand how each one of these 9 Ps (principles) are meant to work together to create a wheel (your business) that is fully functional.
When any one of these principles is missing you simply won’t have what you need to build a business that works.
At the core of your highly profitable, meaningful, and valuable business is our first principle – perspective.
Your perspective is the hub of your wheel (your business) and it’s requires that you cast a vision for your business with the right mindset.
Science has shown that people only ever do things they can “picture” themselves doing. This is probably why visualization is such a huge part of training for Olympians, because if they can’t see themselves executing a front tuck successfully, they probably won’t.
And as you’ve probably gathered by now, the same is true for you in your business.
How to Develop a Winning Perspective in Your Business (and life)!
To develop a winning perspective in your business you need to cast a vision, review your vision, and see your vision with the right mindset.
My favorite guide for casting a godly vision for your business comes from the Bible in Habakkuk 2:2-3.
In this passage we learn the following three pieces to casting a vision that can become a reality:
1. Write down your vision – Write what you see. That’s the way the Message Bible puts it and I love that.
What can you see for yourself as an entrepreneur? Who will you serve? At what level? How will you serve them? How will you bring value to their lives?
Write it so that it’s easy to understand, so that you can see it clearly, so that anyone else who reads it can understand your vision.
When you have your vision written down on paper you will always be able to easily decide if the actions you plan to take are leading you towards your vision, or taking you away from it.
You also increase the likelihood that you will achieve your vision, because when you write it down you are forced to think through the reality of your vision. Which is key if you ever plan to live it out.
Just remember: Everything tangible started out as intangible, but words give things life.
2. Keep your vision in front of you – Habakkuk doesn’t speak to this point exactly, but I think it can be inferred from the context that you need to review your vision regularly. I don’t think God told Habakkuk to write it down so that it could be promptly forgotten. I was to serve as a reminder and notice to all who saw it. Once you write your vision out, set aside time to review it. I like to review the vision for my business monthly. Do what works for you, but always keep your vision fresh in your mind, so that the reality of it is always in the corners of your mind.
3. Remain expectant and patient – Your vision is subject to God’s timing whether you like it or not, so even though you must plan your steps and take action, God will direct your path.
Sometimes this means that the things we want to bring to fruition in our lives don’t happen when we want them to. But we are also told to be patient, to remain steadfast in bringing it to pass, to expect the reality of a God-given vision, because even if it seems out of reach, it will become a reality when the time is right.
Three Steps to Applying the Principle of Perspective to Your Business
Now here is where these articles are going to really pack a punch over the next nine weeks. Right now I’m going to layout exactly what you need to do to establish this winning perspective in your business.
All you have to do is make the time to do these things, and then actually go do them.
Step 1: Establish the right mindset.
Everything you experience in life begins in your mind. It’s the reason two different people can come from two identical circumstances and end up with two totally different results. Your mindset determines how you will interpret and respond to everything in your life.
My mindset is root in my faith, and I believe that unless you learn to establish a mindset rooted in God’s truth, you will always be at the mercy of your enemy’s schemes – even if that enemy is yourself!
Establishing a proper mindset is the ONLY way you can fully step into whatever you’re called to do as an entrepreneur.
As Joyce Meyer says… “Where the mind goes the man will follow.”
Step 2: Create a vision of what your business and life would look like without limits.
It’s very important that you write out your vision unhindered by any self-limiting beliefs. You know, all the “I can’t because…”, “That’s silly because…”, and “I could never because…” phrases that you feel are reasons you can’t live out the vision you have for your life and business.
You will never live out what is possible for you if your refuse to believe in possibility, so start your vision from a limitless point of view.
Before I start to write down a vision for anything I like to get quiet and pray for a few minutes. Then, I’ll spend a couple hours creating my vision. You should try the same, and you can even cut out images to create a vision board if that is something that appeals to you. Make sure you go somewhere where you can let your thoughts flow freely without interruption.
Write your vision with excruciating specificity. It should be so clear that you can picture it vividly in your mind.
Step 3: Submit the vision to God’s will.
I’m always reluctant to talk about God’s will because I think it’s a confusing subject for many people. I mean, can you really know God’s will? Well, I think you can, but for a long time I felt very unsure of my ability to discern God’s will for me.
Thankfully, after years of knowing God, I’ve come to learn the many ways He shows me His will. If this is an area you’d like to learn more about, I highly recommend you check out this podcast episode to help you wrap your head around the idea.
If you’re not a Believer, this concept is probably totally off the wall to you, but for me it’s made all the difference in how much I’ve enjoyed the journey and what has happened along the way.
What I’m asking you to do here is to allow yourself to be led by God as you pursue your vision. Your relationship with God needs to remain your top priority, and the best way to make sure it stays that way is to follow God’s lead as you embark on your journey into entrepreneurship.
Just as you would consult with a business coach or mentor, consult with God as you move forward. Ask for His wisdom and look for His direction. Learn to recognize the difference between an obstacle and opposition from God, and then respond accordingly.
And hear this, there is a difference between being led by God and expecting God to do it all. Faith doesn’t work that way. You have to do your part. You must do what you can do and God will do what you cannot do. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that it’s only about believing. Be hearers and doers, which leads me to step four.
Step 4: Take action and take risks.
If you are going to succeed as an entrepreneur you have to take risks. You have to take action. Take steps forward in faith, knowing that God works things out for your good and according to His purpose. Trust that if you do “miss” Him, He will find you on your way. Just because God is guiding your steps doesn’t give you an excuse not to take any.
Success is attracted to Clarity
Any time I’ve ever set out to achieve something in life, and seen myself doing whatever that is, I’ve experienced success (even if it didn’t show up the first time around).
And I’m not sharing that to brag, I’m sharing that to validate how important it is to see clearly in your mind’s eye where you are headed in your business and your life.
Trying to build a business without an exactingly clear vision for where you want to end up is like trying to find an object in a dark room. You won’t know where to look. You’ll pick up a lot of the wrong things. You’ll take much longer than you need to. And, you might just decide you don’t want it that bad after all.
To get what you want in business and life, you have to know what you want to begin with. Seek absolute clarity and success will seemly find its way to you.
Take Action Now
Do you have a solid perspective as it relates to your business? Have you taken the time to see yourself living out the vision you have for your business and your life? If you haven’t now is the time, no matter how silly it seems to you.
What do you have to lose?
Schedule the time. Establish the right mindset. Write the vision. Give it to God. Identify the first thing you need to do, and go do it.
Then, meet me back here next week for our second P – Petition.