Written By: stephane boss ~
This is the rhythm of the night... the rhythm of my life... oh yeah!
When I was thinking of a good title, I had that song in mind: "This is the rhythm of the night... the rhythm of my life... oh yeah!"
So, I went on YouTube to make sure I got the title right.
And guess what?!
That song is from CORONA!!! Isn't that crazy? I HAD NO CLUE!
The reason I had that song in my head is because I did a long run this past Saturday night. I left home at 3:15 AM and finished at 12:30 PM!
I didn't go far to respect social distancing and avoid taking the car. I ran 12 times the same loop in the Preserve next to our house.
Agreed. That's a dumb thing to do.
I learned a few things in the process:
- you need to set realistic goals. I did not and it took me 10 miles to find my rhythm;
- you need to use downtimes to your advantage. I cannot control things I don't control;
- you are only waterproof to a certain extent. I had to pivot before hypothermia got me
- If I can run in circles for hours, imagine how I can help you brainstorm a plan in the current economy.
#1 SET REALISTIC GOALS
Each year, for three years, I start the running season with a 50k race. For obvious reason this year's was canceled. Not to mention I was injured for 6+ weeks in February. My initial goal was to run this race in sub 6h. Which would have been my personal best on this course.
Since the race was canceled I had to go with plan B: run a 2.5-mile loop in the Preserve next door until I reach 31.25 miles.
When I started it was pouring rain and the temperature was in the mid-40s. It was 3:15 am.
6 hours become unrealistic pretty quick. I was wet. I was cold. I was two loops in and I was wondering what I was doing here, in the middle of the night.
I was frustrated and upset that I was going so slow. That feeling when you blame yourself for not being good enough to be where you think you should be.
It took me 10 miles to find my rhythm. 2.5 hours to set a realistic goal. After that, I was happy. I made peace with my new goal.
In business, it works the same way. It is very frustrating to set an unrealistic goal. And it can be detrimental to your success.
A realistic goal is not an easy one. That's one you think you can achieve with proper planning. And this requires to be honest with yourself and your starting point.
Finally, always have a goal #2 and #3. This will keep you highly motivated when goal #1 becomes out of reach.
#2 USE DOWNTIMES TO YOUR ADVANTAGE
When I started BYDFAULT, a friend told me "don't overstress on the things you do not control". Easier said than done.
Let's take the current coronavirus crisis as an example. We know what to do and not do to avoid being infected. Watching the news or talking about what should have been done will not help you. It is the opposite that will happen. Too much information in this case can lead to paralysis and inaction. Because, yes, this situation is very stressful.
Instead, think of it as an opportunity to reassess your business. An opportunity to, for once, work ON the business.
It's time to be creative. Do things you never had time to do. Or maybe start doing things differently.
As an ultra-distance runner, I constantly reassess my situation during these long runs. And the other night was no different.
My business is at a very low right now. Like really low. But, it forces me to think outside the box and be more creative.
I have never written that many blog posts or create new offers than now. The free brainstorming session for business owners and nonprofit leaders is one example.
Bottom line: now is the time to rethink your business model if in this economy you see a decline in sales.
#3 WATERPROOF TO A CERTAIN EXTENT
When I started my long run the other night, it was pouring rain. At some point I was getting soaked and cold. Even though my jacket is 100% waterproof, overtime you are soaked in sweat. And when you slow down, eventually you are cold.
When you found a momentum, the last thing you want is to stop. In business, when things go well, you have no reason to change your strategy though you know that things will not go well forever. You don't want to lose the momentum.
Same things when running. I was cold but not that cold. Or at least I was trying to convince myself that it will be ok until I decided to stop. Change clothes and go back on the trail for another 5 hours.
By reassessing the situation regularly you can make the required decisions before it's too late. That is even more true when you are alone running the business.
Never take what you have for granted. Everything is a roller coaster. What goes up comes down and you want to be prepared for that time.
#4 RUNNING A BUSINESS IS LIKE RUNNING AN ULTRA-MARATHON
This section can be a blog on its own. Or even a book!
Over the last 5 years, I ran many ultra-marathons from 31 miles to 100 miles distances including two self-supported stage races. I cannot say I am fast but I have built enough experience to manage some very tough times.
I did not finish all my races. But I never lost one any either.
There are always some good lessons I learned from these races that I can apply in my daily life and in running my business.
Thanks to my running experience, I became quite good at handling stormy weather.
In doing so, I realized you are never alone. It's a teamwork as long as you are willing to ask for and receive support from more experienced people around you. In 2017, I was in the middle of the Atacama desert. I was sick like a dog. Not eating. Not drinking and barely moving. I was afraid. Scared that I will not finish the race. At this moment a fellow runner told me: "you either slow down or you won't finish". I finished.
Reassessing your plans and goals become critical in stormy weather like the one we live in right now.
Let me help you brainstorm a plan to handle the storm. Don't stay alone at your desk.
I don't know it all but I can share with you one on one and free what I learned and how it can benefit you right now. It is free. I have nothing to sell. I am here to help.
Click on the image below to schedule a FREE 30-minute brainstorming session.
See you on the other side.
Stephane "running" BYDFAULT