Tag Archive for 'happy'

Defining success in more ways than one



There are times when being one with your small business is not only a good thing, it’s essential. But extreme commitment weaves a fine seam between business and owner. And, unfortunately, entrepreneurial single-mindedness often results in the opposite of what is intended:  a business in jeopardy, run by unhappy humans.


The best way to be a successful AND happy small business owner is to define success in many ways, including having a life that’s balanced with richness outside of the business.


A small business is more like a patchwork quilt than a security blanket.  Some patches represent good things and some not so good. Some patches are about the business, others are about the owner, and some are hard to tell. Small business happiness is found by those owners who feel successful regardless of which patch is in front of them.


Having multiple touchstones of success, not just money and stuff, helps keep the rough patches in business and life in proper perspective. If you became a small business owner to find financial success, good for you; as a capitalist, I admire that motivation.


But if you think just being rich will make you happy, get your umbrella out because I’m going to have to rain on that parade with these two truths:


1.  Wealth only provides options, not a guarantee of happiness.


2.  If you can’t be happy without wealth, you aren’t likely to be happy with it.


Small business success can actually be found in being able to attend a child’s school activity in the middle of the day, as well as in getting a new contract.  And you should be as proud of being able to give back to any worthy cause as you are of the reason you can give back: your business’s financial strength.


Now let’s talk about fun.


Reasonable people disagree on where we will spend eternity, but most agree that this is our only trip through this life. And every moment that goes by without some kind of joy is a precious opportunity lost.


You’re no doubt planning for success this year, but have you made any plans to have fun?  Not your trip to Disney World.  Are you having fun on any given day as you run and grow your business?


If you desire maximum small business success, learn how to run a tight ship while encouraging your people to laugh and find joy in their work.


And one more thing: Be sure to laugh at yourself — in front of others.  Those are usually the best laughs of the day.

Write this on a rock… Define success in more ways than just money and stuff. And don’t forget to have fun.

On Monday, I talked with JoAnna Brandi, The Customer Care Coach, about what it takes to be happy and keep the good and bad stuff in perspective. Take a few minutes to listen and tell us how you keep your life in balance.


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Find a higher level of happiness

Did you know that there is actually a level of happiness, higher than your garden variety happiness, that can be attained by knowing that you are happy, and knowing why you are happy? Consider this quote from Henry Miller,

“It is good to be happy; it’s a little better to know that you’re happy; but to understand that you’re happy and know why and how … and still be happy, be happy in the being and the knowing, well that is beyond happiness, that is bliss.”

I like that thought, but reading it made me coin a new term: happiness-squared, or H2 for short. I like that better than bliss. Bliss is such a presumptuous word, don’t you think?

Here’s the question: What makes you happy? No, really. Think about it this time. Close your eyes, take two deep breaths and think about what is most important in your life; because that is where your happiness comes from. Might be children, work, creating, faith, things like that. Not money. Not stuff. If money and stuff are what you think makes you happy, I propose that you aren’t really happy.

Here’s the challenge: Work hard, create, build, yeah, make money, too. But don’t forget where real happiness comes from. Work on attaining some of the H2.

On The Small Business Advocate Show I’ve talked with two of my Brain Trust members, Jim Ballard and Jim Donovan, on how to be in charge of your own happiness. Jim Ballard is a management consultant, leadership trainer, motivational speaker, consulting partner with the Ken Blanchard Companies, and author of What’s the Rush? and Whale Done. Jim Donovan is an international bestselling author whose books include Handbook to a Happier Life and This is Your Life, Not a Dress Rehearsal, and his latest Don’t Let an Old Person Move Into Your Body. Take a few minutes to click on one of our discussions below and leave your thoughts on what makes you happy.

The paradox of happiness with Jim Ballard

Are you able to be happy with what you have? with Jim Donovan

Are you taking charge of your own happiness? with Jim Donovan




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