Love something more than yourself!
A couple nights ago, I had a very interesting conversation with a dear friend, among the normal chatter of health, family, and love; the topic of entrepreneurial dedication came in. The woman I was on the phone with just started her business; she was in the midst of living her dream. She began her journey at home, enjoying her home practice, teaching small groups, and anyone that would enjoy it.
After growing her clientele, she decided to move into her own work space. Lastly, we recapped how it all started and how difficult the journey had been. As a business owner I understood the struggle, I jokingly asked… Why do we keep doing this to ourselves? While owning a business is such a roller coaster ride, the peaks are amazing, but the drops can be terrifying. Most noteworthy, I went to bed that night with the thought of … why?
Early this morning on my morning run, while listening to one the guest speakers on Ted.com, the reason became clear. Elizabeth Gilbert the author of “Eat, Pray, Love” spoke about the strength to keep going, in her talk “Success, failure and the drive to keep creating”. After the international success of her book, Elizabeth was left in a terrifying place. Like most creative geniuses making it big, she was now known as the “Eat, Pray, Love” lady…. What would she do now?
Elizabeth, much like my friend, started creating when she was young, working different jobs to feed her dream. She was rejected hundreds of times and still kept going. Elizabeth’s success came, she then realized that those that loved her book were going to be disappointed in whatever she wrote next, and those that hated her book were going to be disappointed that she was still writing. My friend had told me something similar that night, how her clients who were used to seeing her at her home, were disappointed that she was moving her business. At that moment, in the brink of moving her business she was coming to understand that the drive to continue moving forward was that of her passion for what she did. This ultimately pushed her ahead.
As business owners, failure is inevitable, if you continue to push thru, levels of success will also be inevitable. The question is, how do you continue creating in the midst of that success? Elizabeth further explains that she wanted to be a writer all of her life. After many years of rejection, she told herself that she wasn’t going to quit, that she was going “home”.
To use her words “ … for me going home did not mean returning to my family’s farm, for me going home meant returning to the work of writing, because writing was my home.” What she said next gave me shivers! “…because I loved writing more than I hated failing at writing, which is to say that I loved writing more than I loved my own ego, which is ultimately to say that I loved writing more than I loved myself.”
Alas, the moment of understanding. Why do we keep doing this to ourselves? Because it is our home… for my friend it is thru inspiring, mantras, and Asanas. Going home for both of us is the time we spend on our mats and most of all, the connections we make within ourselves. As a result, the low moments don’t matter and the fear of the “what next” after a goal accomplished is easy to answer… just go back home.
Enjoy Elizabeth’s Ted Talk below!