Why do we get so many ideas in the shower?
In this article, we’re going to set you up for one of the best days of your professional life. I’m going to give you a challenge, walk you through what to do in that challenge, and then ask you to return and report.
The goal today is simple: Help you to unlock your brain.
The Best Business Ideas Come from Doing Nothing
"Business operators get tired. Business owners get rich." – Keith Cunningham
I hate to tell you this, but you’re getting in the way of your company's growth. Move out of the way!
One of the biggest bottlenecks in any business is the business owner. You get in the way of everything. You think that you’re solving problems, managing the workload, and making the world spin on its axis but all you’re doing is mucking things up.
Most people go into business because they're really good at something. That means that they're often the ones doing the work for the customers. The business owner oversees all the work, has to approve everything, and usually has hands on every project.
One of my mentors recently shared something with me that made me smile. He said that business operators get tired; business owners get rich.
We need to get you out of working in your business as an operator, and get your working on your business as an owner.
The first step to making that happen is to get you out of the office and shake things up. Dr. Shelly Carson calls these moments “incubation” periods. She teaches people how to unleash their creativity and she's found that we often focus too hard on trying to solve a problem. When that happens, we get lost in the forest and begin thinking about things that are not helpful.
What you need is an interruption.
She says that if you interrupt your pattern, you’ll force your brain to release and find a solution on its own.
You’ve done this right? You’ve been bogged down with a problem after having spent hours poring over possible solutions only to bang your head on the wall. Finally you give up, go home and hit the sack. The next morning you wake up, hop in the shower and the heavens part with a common sense answer that solves everything.
"Holy crap!" You say to yourself. "I just got one of the best business ideas ever and I don't have anywhere to write it down." If that happens to you, just draw on the glass. It works great.
Another great thing about the shower is that there are no cell phones, email, or Twitter updates.
Ahhh… the blessed power of serenity. It’s amazing what you can do when you’re not plugged in.
Take the Zen Day Challenge
I was standing in the shower this morning thinking about the topic of today’s blog post and guess what… I got an idea. Cool huh?!
The idea was this: We need to take a Zen Day Challenge. Yep, I even came up with the name all by myself.
The goal with this challenge is to accomplish 3 things:
- Unplug from everything for one whole day. I know. I know. Keep your panties on. You’ll survive.
- Escape from your home, your office, and your life by going somewhere that nobody can find you.
- Have one core business need that if solved, will grow and improve your company.
You're best thoughts won't come to you in the office.
You could go on a hike. You could escape to your favorite bistro for the day. You could sit in the corner of a bookstore. You could eat green eggs & ham. I don’t care where you go or what you do, just don't do what you normally do.
Leave your devices at home. Nothing can happen in one day that will be so catastrophic that you can’t fix it when you get back.
This day is a gift to you. Open up your calendar right now and schedule your Zen Day. Try to make it within 7 days if possible.
I want you to block this day out entirely. Got it?
Great. Now send out an email to your entire staff, customers, or whoever else needs you and let them know you’ll be out for that day.
Do this step. I promise if you don't, you’ll never take the challenge.
What to Do During Your Zen Day Challenge
If you’re still reading, you’ve booked a day on your calendar and sent out your email. It’s going to be great!
If you haven’t set a date, go back and do it now.
Alight, here is an example of what you should be doing on your Zen Day Challenge.
- Start the day with a good long shower. Clear your mind and get excited about your Zen Day.
- Pack a backpack full of snacks and water. You’re going to need them. Make sure your snacks are healthy. None of that junk food crap. You need to feel your best on this day because you need your brain open and ready to receive new ideas.
- Grab a note pad and a pen.
- At the top of your notepad, write one question relating to the core business need you want to solve. For example: "How do I remove myself from the day-to-day operations within 1 month so that I can start being a better business owner?"
- Try to avoid all forms of media for the day. If you decide to go to your bistro, sit in a corner that doesn’t have the television spouting off current news stories.
- Let your brain wander. You don’t have to think directly about what you're trying to solve.
- Throughout the day, talk with people, read books, breathe deep, and get outside if possible.
- When inspiration strikes, write it down in your notebook.
The hardest part of The Zen Day Challenge is managing your anxiety and boredom. You’re so used to being plugged in that you’re going to feel like you’re missing out on vital information.
You won't. Remember that it's alright to skip out on the to-do lists for a day in order to build the best business ideas possible. You need time and inspiration to make that happen.
Know that the first hour is the hardest, but stick with your guns. Don’t give up and go back to the office. Stay committed to this day. As you do, here's what will happen:
- You'll find solutions you never thought were possible
- Opportunities will pop up
- You'll create a strategy that excites you
Since you’re not bogged down with working in your business, you’ll be getting ideas that will improve your company.
Take The Zen Day Challenge, discover the missing ingredients to grow your business and then most importantly… come back to this blog post and leave a comment below on how it went. Your success will inspire other readers to take the challenge. I want to hear about your best business ideas and how they have helped you get to the next level.
Once you get your idea, the next step is to quit your job and get started. Check out our article on how make that happen here.
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