Did you win the prize for being the hardest working entrepreneur of the year yet? Those moments where you put your work ahead of your own wellbeing, did everyone give you a big round of applause and a shiny new trophy? I’m pretty sure none of that went down.
Hard work is a religion these days, and particularly so amongst online entrepreneurs. The fetishization of “the grind” permeates entrepreneur culture, the way it permeated corporate culture over the past few decades.
We may have heard the research that indicates the many benefits of emotional fulfillment on productivity, but this information is sometimes at odds with our identity of entrepreneurship. There is some part of us that looks at self-employment as a sacred obligation. Sometimes, we feel like if we don’t work until we are spent, we will be letting everyone down. The truth is that your hobby might just be the key to your ultimate success.
Have you ever met a salesperson who seems to really understand their product, but their personal affect is so unappealing that you refuse to buy from them? It’s a vibe thing and we know it when we feel it.
Whether we want to admit it or not, we are all social animals, and we value charisma and well-being in others. We are attracted to happy people, who put us at ease, and who seem confident and relaxed. We recognize these qualities of leadership and others, but often we refuse to allow ourselves the relaxation and the pleasures that might generate those same qualities in ourselves. True success includes overall abundant energy that people can feel. As a business owner, your energy not only affects your team but your clients feel it too. Creating a sense of balance with a new hobby can help that.
Whether it’s athletics, chess, knitting, or painting, the satisfaction associated with passion can put us into a flow state. The feeling of flow, where we are unaware of the passage of time, and our critical minds give way to our creative minds, can produce some of the best ideas in business or anywhere else. A hobby also allows you to let your creativity fly without the pressure of monetizing each thing you create. You can try on new vibes, express yourself, or showcase your viewpoint without worrying about how it will be perceived. Allowing that creative flow is the key to being open and receiving true inspiration. That flow will positively affect your brand.
Steve Jobs talked about taking LSD as being personally transformative and instrumental to his ideas for Apple Computers’ early stages. I would never suggest you take up drugs as a hobby but the point is, If the most admired tech entrepreneur of the last 50 years was dropping acid, surely you can allow yourself to take some time to learn piano or start reupholstering furniture!
Whatever brings you that sense of satisfaction and flow is where you need to focus.
Getting away from your work to clear your mind could just create space for the next brilliant idea to come rushing in.
The word inspiration comes from the Latin root to breathe in. You have to make space in your body and mind to breathe if you want to be a vessel for brilliance.
If you’ve picked up a hobby recently, tell us about it. It might inspire someone else.