BY SHERIDAN WATKINS
If you’re a business owner, or thinking about it, you’ve likely already been pummeled with cautions and encouragement for the challenging journey you’re embarking upon. It’s caused you to think, rethink, and rethink the rethinking. Despite it all, you decided the business will be born. Add hard work on top of it and you’ve concluded you’ll be like any other success story in due time.
Well, in the most gentle way I can, I’m here to tell you that none of that matters.
Societal barriers are real.
Unfortunately, there are barriers in our society that delay and block you from attaining your milestones, whether we acknowledge them or not. One barrier is the fact you are a woman – but you are an amazing woman, and you should remind yourself of that every day.
Don’t confuse “busy work” with “hard work.”
It doesn’t matter how hard you work when it’s targeted toward the wrong thing. Don’t confuse “busy work” with “hard work.” “Busy work” can be hard to complete because you shouldn’t even be doing it!
Why hard work isn’t enough.
Hard work can actually distract you from your calling if you’re being pulled in different directions, all for the sake of saying your hard work will pay off…one day, hopefully. But think of the opportunities that landed in your lap with little to no effort at all – kind of dispels the theory that only hard work will get you to success.
Don’t hide behind “hard work.”
Another downside to hard work is that it tends to hide you from the world because you’re so busy. When you only work on the things you’re good at and are called to work on, it forces everything around you to shift and shine a spotlight on your passion. You won’t be known for everything but you’ll be top-of-mind in your niche.
The game changer is putting the hard work into your faith.
Think of the basketball star who comes in an hour before practice and stays an hour after just to practice free throws. That is faith that sharpening one skill will make a huge difference in the entire game! So, what is your faith work? Commit to it now because you’ll need it when you get discouraged. Your faith will be there for you when you are low on enthusiasm and energy, but hard work will just make things harder at those times.
Refer back to your journal, accomplishments, Bible, or whatever highlights your greatness.
As much as you deserve a pat on the back for the hard work accomplished, make sure it’s not all you’re doing, or the very thing you’re called to do will begin to feel like a burden. The word faith means what you think it does: a belief in God, yourself, the universe, your business, or however you interpret it – that is what will keep you going every day.
How to incorporate more faith in business.
Finding the faith to stick to the mission can be hard work in itself so step into it by finding still moments. Meditate, pray, and nourish your body before giving time away to anything else, including your business. You will be blown away with how well frustrations fall off your back and the ideas and epiphanies that come, all by deciding to go against the grain of society norms and sit still. There may be times you have to clear the whole day in order to tune in with yourself. It’s always worth it.
Listen, study and take time.
As you keep listening to your heart, studying your emotions, and taking sacred time for solitude, you’ll begin to gain confidence in knowing what to work on and what to omit, push back, or delegate. This will give you better judgment and more tenacity than you thought you were capable of. It can also inspire the next person to put faith in her endeavors. Can you picture a world full of faith? It may look a lot different from what we see now.
Choose faith first and believe the rest will come.
From this point forward, don’t choose hard work, or money, or quick success – choose faith first. No successful person has achieved her wildest dreams without believing what she hasn’t yet seen. If it were easy, nearly everyone would be a business owner, and if hard work was enough, we’d all be millionaires by our personal deadlines. With wholehearted and unshakable faith as the most important ingredient that’s been missing, we can get up tomorrow and try a new thing.
Sheridan C. Watkins is a journalist and the owner of Shairpins, a jewelry and gifts brand focused on transcending self-worth to all women. Her true work began after climbing out of a dark place with the help of God and therapy and her life mission is to provide tangible peace through her Divine gifts to help women heal and transform their lives. Follow the mission on Instagram: @shairpinsgarden