Having just spent three days immersed in a programme of personal and professional development, along with some fascinating people; I came away full of ideas on multiple levels. For example, I’ve been thinking about how I could incorporate elements of the learning into my client work; and reflecting on which aspects I could apply to my businesses. I’ve also been identifying the components I didn’t relate to and questioning why that might be.
Part of the rationale in regularly undertaking such programmes is the opportunity to experience my work from a fresh perspective. In order to do that I have to be able to step back and assess the current situation in relation to my stated aspirations. It’s easy to veer off track and important to recognise when that happens.
You can’t help but notice when you hit a wall. It’s clear you’ve stalled even if the solution isn’t immediately obvious; whereas, you could be oblivious to the fact that the road ahead is closed to you and plough on regardless, without a clear line of sight.
I started out with the goal of becoming the answer to one set of prayers, only to realise that by doing what I do well in a different way, I could become the answer to many more. And I am not alone in this experience. Many successful new businesses end up with a strategy different than the one they originally pursued; not least because they’ve taken the time to step back and reassess what’s working and what isn’t.
This is not the same as trying to cover every base or be all things to all people; nor is it the same as being pegged back or giving up. This is a conscious process of taking stock and acting on the information that provides. It’s a courageous move; and we would probably all recognise that it’s much easier to keep bumping along the same path without taking the time to re-evaluate.
Remember, taking a step back isn’t failure; nor is it an opportunity to tread water. Quite the reverse, it’s the best possible way to move forward – manoeuvring around the road blocks – and ultimately to end up where you intended, albeit via a more scenic route.