A Challenging Means to a Victorious End.
I was sitting alone, in a quiet hotel restaurant, iPad in one hand, fork in the other. A woman at the bar got up, holding a gin that was unlikely to have been her first or even her second, and sidled over to my table. “Whoa, I always feel so sorry for people who have to sit all by themselves in a restaurant. What’s the matter honey, don’t you got a boyfriend?”
I smiled and laughed and assured her that I had a loving husband and a wonderful family but I was busy on an important mission which often means dining alone. She asked a few questions but quickly lost interest and shuffled back over to the bartender, who was proving much more engaging.
I sat and reflected on what it meant to be sitting alone, again, in a restaurant for the 4th time that week. Did I regret it? Was I feeling lonely? Should people feel sorry for me?
Not for a second. I still wake every day prepared and excited to criss-cross the country, providing information, guidance and sometimes comfort to the hundreds of families who struggle every day to make sense of the challenge of combining both family and business in a way that makes sense and creates harmony. Sometimes it is quiet and sometimes I get tired of hotel food—but for the most part, I just feel deeply compelled.
However, my one concern is that there is simply not enough of us… those who don’t mind the windshield time, who don’t find planes confining or hotel rooms too depressing. We need more folks who are open to engaging in tough conversations, dealing with conflict on a daily basis, who are not frightened or offended by a few tears or angry outbursts. Our small businesses need more advisors who really pay attention to excellent communication—not sales—but rather deep, active listening, reflecting, posing powerful questions and guiding through reframing and positive reinforcement.
For all of those wonderful professionals who have gone through our training at some point, thank you! It is a first and very important step. However, this is an on-going learning process. Please be sure and join in our national discussions and utilize our resource library.
Finally, if you are a happy road warrior and would relish the opportunity to visit the most rural areas of this fine country, let me know. I can definitely recommend a few restaurants!