This year for our holidays my husband and I decided we would like to travel around Europe on the train. I knew it would be taking me out of my comfort zones but it also felt very exciting. My husband has been before on his own about 20 years ago. We chose our destinations, booked the trains and accommodation ourselves and set off full of excitement and anticipation.
It was an interesting experience for me as the things I thought would be challenging I actually enjoyed and the bits I thought I’d enjoy were disappointing. However, I did find that being out of my comfort zones actually bought me freedom!
The greatest adventure for me was on our journey home. I had actually said to my husband on the train from Cologne to Brussels that I couldn’t get through a Metro in Europe without him – “now that’s an interesting belief system” I hear you say, hum!! Well this belief system I held was about to be challenged!
As we pulled into Brussels station (some of you may already know that there are several stations); I got out of the train with our hand luggage and waited for my husband to get off the train with our cases. He said he wasn’t going to rush to get off as the train wouldn’t be going anywhere!! However, after a few minutes he didn’t appear on the platform and the next thing I saw were the doors closing and my husband waving toward the train!! Oops too late – I was left standing there watching the train leave the station!
My first thought was “where are they taking him? – the depot?”! This was a Sunday evening and there were no staff around to ask; thankfully there was a kind lady beside me who could speak English and told me the train was going to Brussels Midi and we were at Brussels Nord! I then realised I was at the wrong station and needed to get to Brussels Midi. The lady suggested the best way would be to take the Metro – however, I explained I had no money to which she replied “that’s OK no-one is around to check tickets on a Sunday” but omitted to tell me I wouldn’t get out the other end without a ticket!
So there I was, no money, no mobile contact and can only speak English and school girl French with an hour before our train left to London.
It was then I heard one voice in one ear (which sounded like my Mother) “You won’t be able to do this” and another one in the other ear saying “Yes you can!”.
I then had a choice – which voice was I going to listen to?
It amazes me that when one is faced with a crisis what resources we find within ourselves we didn’t even know where there. Can you remember a time in your career, relationships, business when you were facing a crisis and there was no time to think and you just had to act and do something – how did that feel?! I read stories about people who jump into rivers to save others without a thought – amazing!
Needless to say the story ends well and I managed to catch the Metro and get out the other end unscathed and I learned that “I could get through the Metro in Europe on my own” without resources like money! Not that I want to make a habit of it you understand.
What has this got to do with business?
Well, for me, a belief system has been changed and I am much more prepared to go out on a limb and take risks and give things a try – even writing articles!
Negative belief systems can limit our potential.
As business women we are “technicians” and good at what we do, however, when running our own businesses we have to do everything ourselves – unless we have the finances to employ people.
Have you ever tried writing your own job description? That’s revealing!
I would encourage you this week:-
- When asked to try something new do I think or say “I can’t do that” – how about changing that to “how can I do that?”
- Look at your “To do List” or Action Plan and choose one thing that you know makes you feel uncomfortable (for me it’s cold calling) and do it anyway.
I believe for our businesses to grow, we have to grow too and that means challenging our ways of thinking that maybe were once OK, but are they helpful now?
Life is a journey and being a business women is like an adventure; new things to learn, new experiences and meeting new people and the less baggage we take with us the more we can enjoy it and experience greater FREEDOM.
I look forward to hearing about your adventures!