What I learned while taking care of my father

Over the last 15 months, I had become the main caretaker of my father after he suffered an injury at his home in another state. For several months, during this pandemic, I traveled between states to become his healthcare advocate until eventually I moved him to live with me and my husband. Thankfully, I was and am the CEO of my own business, so I was able to structure my time around the business of taking care of him. Shortly after returning to his home, unfortunately we lost my father after he suffered another injury. His death and the fact that we’re less than 40 days away from a new year caused me to reflect on some things I’ve learned and how they’ve impacted my business and how I work.

1.       Systems – having systems in place was MAJOR. Because I had systems in place, I was able to travel, enforce boundaries, interact with clients, hire team members, track financials, and grow my business. I was able to PLAN, Process, and Manage – EFFICIENTLY!

2.       Team – having and accepting help from a support system was just as major. Even temporary support is support. The team members I was able to have in place to help on both personal and professional sides were immense in having a successful year.

3.       Grace – I networked with many entrepreneurs throughout the year. The one advice I received most from other successful entrepreneurs and small business owners was to be gracious to yourself and take the break you need without feeling guilty. Sometimes slowing down and maybe even just taking a break helps with any overwhelm we feel. It gives us time to breathe and think of what is possible next.

4.       Recount the good – tell your stories, enjoy the good times, laugh as much as possible, bask in the successful completion of task and projects, congratulate the team, THANK your team.

5.       Debrief – we all know sometimes things didn’t go the way we would like. Debrief on what went wrong, what could have made it better, and how you can show up differently. Being successful requires the good and the bad, but here is a word of CAUTION: do NOT stay in that place too long. Don’t dwell on the wrong, inaccuracies, missed tasks, or bungled projects too long. Learn the Lesson and move on!

6.       Move on – Know when to let go and don’t be afraid of doing so. As a military veteran and lifelong truck driver, my father showed me three things: he wasn’t afraid to go; he wasn’t afraid to let go – of people, places, things, and ideas; and he wasn’t afraid to ask the hard questions. Sometimes, we must reflect and ask the hard questions. But we must move on. Life doesn’t stop and as an entrepreneur, business doesn’t stop. You either adjust or get left behind and lose all you’ve worked for.

7.       Mindset – Your mindset must change to become successful. Sometimes, we can’t control what happens, but we can control our mindset. Changing your thought process leads to changing your actions and responses. Your mindset will change how you manage your business and life, or how you don’t manage them for that matter. Changing your mindset will teach you to focus on your strengths, learn from your mistakes, and become stronger in your natural abilities.

8.       Pivot! – If you’ve ever watched Friends, you know the episode where Ross yells Pivot repeatedly when they’re struggling move his newly purchased couch to his apartment. Well, life will yell at you in the same way. Pivot! Do you need systems and boundaries in place? Pivot! Do you feel overwhelmed and know you can’t do everything alone? Pivot! Do you need other resources and team members but don’t know where to start? Pivot! Were there missteps in the assignments or tasks that having a standardized process could’ve alleviated? Pivot! Need a mindset shift? Pivot! Afraid to let go? Pivot! If there are any questions you have for me, feel free to reach out to me by clicking here. If you’re curious about how I can help, click here. But as a new year is coming quickly, join me as I and others in our ecosystem scale our businesses and Pivot!

 This is dedicated to you, Daddy. Rest in Power.

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