When we are young, we are pretty foolish as it relates to minding our parents (well, at least I was). I didn’t understand until recent years that they were wise, and even the smallest of instructions would help me in all areas of my life. For example, “get your homework done before you go out to play,” would translate into the lesson of learning how to prioritize, and doing the most important thing first. How about this one: “you have to eat all your dinner before you can have dessert.” Ugh, so frustrating, right?!? The golden nugget was that I learned to reward myself only after the vital thing was done.
How about this one: “don’t leave your dishes in the sink!” The lesson here was to take responsibility for my own mess. Translates to so much in life, right? The Big Kahuna for me had to do with my tendency to be nosy and bossy, especially as it related to my little sister. You may have heard this one before: “mind your own business.” As frustrating as it was for me to hear back then, little did I realize that it would be the best wise advice I’d ever receive.
You see, minding my own business is all about focus and responsibility. When I was focused on my sister and what she “should” have been doing I was neglecting focusing on what I was responsible for. How does this translate into our adult world? In business, if we are focused on what our competitor is doing, we are not focused on how to make our own service/product better, thus increasing our profits. If we are focused on what a co-worker is not doing, we are not taking responsibility for our own areas. In our personal lives, if I am focused on what Sally Sue is doing and how perfect her family looks on Facebook, and feeling sorry for myself, or jealous or whatever, I am wasting my time and not working on myself and what can actually make my life better.
If you need a little help taking Mom’s advice, here are a few coaching questions that may be helpful:
What have I been focusing on? What do I need to be focusing on?
What do I need to do to regain focus?
What action steps do I need to put into place to take responsibility for my area (business or personal)?