Why small business owners make terrible decorators

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I was reminded recently of a piece of sage advice I received years ago from a very successful entrepreneur - when you feel overwhelmed, go paint a wall.

Well, paint a wall, cut the lawn, cut the hedges.

Anything that basically gets you doing something on your own that takes your mind off the fast growing to-do list.

Before you do, think about the main things you are trying to achieve and then get to work for an hour or two.

No phones or notebooks allowed.

You’ll be amazed how often ideas flow, stress levels reduce and you can attack things with much more energy following the break.

The fact you also achieved (hopefully) something such as a newly painted room or wall or nicely manicured lawn gives you an additional boost of confidence, high spirits and a shot in the arm that proves you are a person that gets things done.

Back to the terrible decorator analogy.

As a small business owner you can have a tendency to micro manage.

After all no one can do the (now unfinished, languishing and general millstone around your neck) project as well as you right?

You are always perfecting, ensuring things are just right and constantly refining work that was previously done rather than getting on with the next thing that will propel your business forward.

If you do end up taking time to paint that wall (the spare room was my last endeavor) you’ll know what I mean about the tendency to re-do work that has already been done.
I recently set to on the spare room, diligently and methodically painting my way around the room.

However the perfectionist in me kept seeing areas that I thought I had missed.
Areas that looked dry next to the freshly painted section I only just finished.
So I did what anyone would do, I just applied a coat to that dry-looking area.
However as any painter will tell you, I hadn’t actually missed the area, it just dried quicker than other areas.

The end result for me:

1) An uneven finish when dried

2) The job took longer to complete as I didn’t have the faith in the first attempt

3) I was delayed getting the next profit-driving project started 

How often have we done that with emails, direct marketing pieces and maybe even just clearing out some old files?

We risk becoming professional researchers or even worse professional seminar attendees, with all this knowledge but none of the application.

Knowledge is power, but only when the knowledge is used.

So what are you waiting for?

Get that campaign started, call those potential customers, write that blog!

Finally a quote from General Patton to finish with: “A good plan executed violently now, will always beat a perfect plan next week”.