Owning your own business can be all-consuming. There’s always more to do than can possibly be done and never enough time in which to complete everything. It’s easy to get into a rhythm of business life that steals all your attention. If you love what you do it’s easy to find all of your satisfaction in achieving success; so much so that you can forget that you need people in your life.
Making time to rest is vital to productivity. If you don’t ever rest you can’t recharge, evaluate, or enjoy the fruit of your labors.
Friendship is similar to rest in that it’s a discipline. Friendships don’t maintain themselves. They have to be nurtured. You have to cultivate intimacy, and that means you must be intentional with your time and resources.
Here are two ways that friendship makes you a better business person.
Friendships change your perspective
At least three times per week I have a standing commitment to meet two friends at the gym in the late afternoon. That time, purposely set aide, never ceases to amaze me. Not only am I working my body to its max (which has its own benefits), but I’m forced to look outside my own experiences of the day to see that there are others around me with their own needs, concerns, and goals.
When you are slugging through life on your own you only have one perspective: your own. Friendship requires your attention to turn from yourself to others. This is an amazing thing. Life isn’t meant to be lived on your own, serving your own needs, desires, and impulses. Instead it’s meant to be lived as an investment into the lives of those around you.
Disciplining yourself to put your work aside for a couple of hours throughout the week to meet someone for coffee, a walk, a workout, or a meal helps you to see the bigger picture; that life isn’t just about business, profit, and reaching goals. Life is meant to be lived within a community. Your biggest investments are made in the relationships all around you.
Friendships expand your creativity
One of my best friends and I have a reading challenge for the year. My goal includes reading two to three books per month. At least one of those books has to be a novel and the other has to be for personal development. Often, my friend and I read books that the other recommends, and then we spend copious amounts of time dissecting the themes, points, or emotions. This opens the creative floodgates of my mind in far-reaching ways.
When you are investing in the relationships around you and your focus is shifted from yourself onto someone else and their needs it expands your creativity. As an entrepreneur, seeing the world through someone else’s lens should make you notice ways that you can create or contribute to solutions for problems around you. Having friends with which to discuss your passions helps you to grow and mature. Having someone outside your own spider web of ideas inside your head is invaluable.
Relationships are the reason why financial success should never be the only goal. Without deep friendships around you, what is the point of success? “The Top” is a sad place to be without someone to share it with.
We would love to hear ways that you incorporate relationships and community into your business lifestyle.
Wishing You Success,
Lindsey is wife to Caleb and Mama to their two daughters. She has worked in administration and marketing alongside Caleb in other businesses and is excited to be a part of the Sweet Feeders team. When she’s not being a wife and mom she can be found with a cup of coffee writing on her laptop, reading a good book, or working out at the gym.