Don't Forget to Breathe

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For many of us, this phrase is a reminder of that classic movie Karate Kid, and brings up images of Daniel-san painting the fence and waxing the car.  For me the images are more recent and personal, and I now add an addition to the end of the phrase – “and Live”.  Too many of us are living to work, living to be the best, to win the game, and we sometimes forget to look up and around and simply take a deep breath and enjoy life.

My reminder came about 2 seconds after the Semi crashed into the back of my car at 65mph on the Interstate.  I was simply driving to work like I always do, thinking about all the meetings on my schedule, focused on doing all it takes to run a business, when reality crashed into me, sending me spinning into a concrete wall.  It felt like forever, but it was over in about 3 seconds, and when I looked up to see I was facing backwards in the median and checked that I could still move everything, I realized I was still holding my breath.  I exhaled, took another deep breath and exhaled again before I could start thinking clearly, and the first thought was, “Good, I’m alive and nothing is broken”.  And a new life perspective was born.

It is really easy to get caught up in the excitement, terror, and drudgery of owning and running a business.  It is easy to allow our business to run our life, yet how easy is it to simply stop, take a couple of deep breaths, and look at how our entwined our business is with our life?  Is your Business supporting your Life or is your Life supporting your Business?  Take time to smell the roses, hug your kids, kiss your spouse/significant other – Don’t Forget to Breathe and Live!  That’s what owning a business should be doing for you.  If it’s not, you might be doing it wrong.  Let me know if we can help.

Author: Mark McNulty, Louisville Business Coach