The Power of Self-Awareness

I want talk about a concept I don’t see talked and mentioned much in books about entrepreneurship, business and success. It’s a very important topic because I think it’s one of the keys to having a major breakthrough in your business and in everything you do. I published a podcast exclusively about self-awareness where I talked about the importance of knowing who you are and knowing where you’re really good at and knowing where you really suck.

A lot of entrepreneurs are very excited to start building businesses, but then forget their core skill is. There’s so much stuff that happens and so many different skills that need to be combined and what happens often times is that we forget where we’re really good at. We take on responsibilities and roles that we really should not be taking on. Taking those tasks diminishes returns because they take your focus off doing what you’re really good at.

Marathon Runner or Sprinter

It’s really important for you to get a really good grasp about how you work. For example, I’m personally am very good at working for 60-90 day period. I am probably one of the best in the world at working for 60 days nonstop on a specific task or building a project or a new company. That is one of my core skills, and even if you ask my close friends in the entrepreneurship game, they’ll say that my core skill is being super focused for about 3 months. That is my window and sweet spot.

What inevitably happens is I’m not a good marathon runner. I’m not good at doing the same thing for 3 or 10 years. That’s not my skill. I had to come to the conclusion that my core skill is being a sprinter. I work until I drop and I was brought up by my parents who are both workhorses. I grew up in an environment of working hard and smart all the time. That’s how I went from being an okay tennis player as a junior to being number one in the country and being in the top 15 juniors in Europe. I am obsessed with working hard and I am obsessed with working smart.

Working Hard and Smart

What I want to communicate to you is recognizing and thinking about how you work. Are you a sprinter? Are you a marathon runner? Both skills really need to be combined. You can’t build a successful company only if you’re sprinter.

So if you’re a sprinter, what can you do to create a sustainable business? What I found to work for me is tricking my mind. I need to come up with ways to tell my mind and break things down in smaller chunks that take about a month each. At the end of that month, I evaluate the next tasks and set new tasks for the coming months.

If I take the approach of thinking I’m going to build a company and work like this for 10 years, it really doesn’t satisfy or drive me. I recognized that I am a sprinter. I can now trick my mind and schedule into anything I need into adapting what I need to compensate for that and do the necessary to run as long as a marathon runner but in short bursts.

Think about when you’ve been the most productive. Do you like working for months and years at a time on the same project? Combining both (short sprints and a marathon strategy) is how I manage to make my ventures work. Think of when you were the most productive and once you’re aware of that situation and skill, think of how you can combine both because that’s when you can really, really breakthrough.

What are your thoughts? I would love to hear from you! 🙂