Maintain Your Mojo by Maximising The Four Ls of Life

Maintain Your Mojo by Maximising The Four Ls of Life

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‘You have everything you need to build something far bigger than yourself.’
Seth Godin

The other day I heard a great analogy that inspired me to write this post. It was about having enough legs on the table for a balanced life. This metaphor encapsulates the problems that entrepreneurs face on their journeys. From all I have learnt and experienced throughout my own entrepreneurial journey and work with entrepreneurs, I know it is the four legs of the table that keep us all standing, balanced and strong. They are ‘The Four Ls of Life’: Learning, Loving, Living and Legacy.

Have you lost your mojo? Do you know someone who has lost theirs? Believe it or not, this is a common problem with entrepreneurs along their journey and can be a key barrier to long term success.

Financial success in business doesn’t always bring what was initially hoped for. There is a point in many entrepreneurs’ lives when the initial motivation that got them where they are no longer motivates them to move forward. The world outside sees their success, but the person inside doesn’t feel it. It can be a difficult and lonely place, hard to describe unless you’ve been there, leading to many serious consequences for relationships, health and wellbeing.

So how can you maintain optimum performance for the whole of your life? How do you create a life of great success and fulfilment?

Learning – from birth onwards, we are learning all the time. When some people think of ‘learning’  they equate it with school or university – ending after their formal education is over. But just as life goes on, learning is ongoing too. Many entrepreneurs love the startup phase and dislike what happens when they grow their business. Their learning curve is so much higher in the early stages, but when companies get larger the innovation may stop. Their work can end up all about dealing with issues and steering the ship. Learning lessens with time – which can have a negative impact on both your wellbeing AND your company’s success.

Companies that learn fast maintain their success – and the same goes for entrepreneurs. Whatever your stage in business, it is vital to maximise your learning at all times. Even when time is short, you can learn. Design a system for your life and work, with learning at its core. It is good for business and good for you. Learn something new every day. Show enthusiasm for new ideas, new experiences, new information, new people. Make the most of every opportunity to learn, and live life to the full.

Further reading on learning:
The Mentoring Edge
Learning in your dead time
Accelerated learning

Loving – Most successful entrepreneurs are, by nature, very hard on themselves. In some cases, negative issues from the past are what drive them to prove themselves. However, this can lead to issues further down the line. One of the keys is to embrace who you are with positivity and love, and learn to maximise that self-regard. If you live your life to prove something to others, it suggests that you don’t actually like yourself enough to live life to your own satisfaction.

One of the keys to long term success comes from learning to love yourself. Some people don’t even like themselves! But unless you love yourself, how can you begin to love another person? How can you love life? So love yourself. Not excessively. Just consistently.

Develop a plan in business and in life that celebrates the best of you and improves or eradicates the worst aspects of yourself. Then, don’t be so hard on yourself. Working against yourself is a tough road, leading to trouble. So make it easy, and be your own best travelling companion on the road. Relationships with others change, but the one intimate relationship that never leaves us is the relationship we have with ourselves.

Further reading on loving:
Brand the real you
You are the average of the people you spend time with
The Law of Attraction

Living – One of my earliest influences which has stuck with me ever since was spending time in Africa. Although there was extreme poverty, there was always joy, fun and laughter in abundance amongst the people. And yet today, if you walk around a wealthy city like London, it is hard to find a smile. I have always found this difference extremely powerful.

Watch a dog running around happily or a child playing – they thoroughly enjoy living in the moment. Living life in the present costs nothing, yet we spend much of our time oblivious to this pleasure, earning money to pay for living in the future.

The truth is that you can live a life and build a business at the same time, but many entrepreneurs miss this point, forgetting to enjoy themselves on the way. This has a negative impact on their lives.

Some people don’t really live; they merely exist. How are you living now? Do you live life to the full? Are you being the very best you could possibly be? Why not be the sort of person you’ve always wanted to be – the kind of person others like to spend time with? Be who you want to be!

Further reading on living:
The happiness advantage
Why my dog is my mentor
The hedonic treadmill

Legacy – You have achieved a lot in your life already. But what great work will you leave behind as your legacy? The older you get, the more your priorities and values change. Money (or ambition) no longer seems to be the main driving force it was in your youth.

Steve Jobs was driven by an urge to make an impact on the world, not just in spearheading Apple, but in redefining attitudes to work, society and life. Bill Gates is now spending the bulk of his fortune on hischaritable foundation, supporting many great causes – one of which is eradicating polio and other killer diseases from the world.

What would you like written on your gravestone, in your obituary or as your epitaph?

Are you making a difference?

What are you doing to make your mark on the world, and to make the world a better place?

Beyond your own personal satisfaction, what would you like others to gain from your existence? The connection between yourself and others – working in any way, large or small, to make a positive difference to other people’s lives – becomes increasingly important. So – what are you doing to change the world?

Further reading on legacy:
You are Going to Die
The Power of Thinking Big
Screw Marketing, Just be remarkable

Build these four strong, equally balanced legs of Learning, Loving, Living and Legacy first, and success in all aspects of your life is virtually assured. Develop and maintain a life that’s soundly supported by each of these legs, and you will be able to maintain the pace and motivation you had from the start. For long term sustainable success, you need to develop a plan that keeps all four legs of the table strong. It’s not so much what you bring to the table, as the strength and balance of your table itself!

The great thing to realise is that you can make a difference AND earn good money AND live well. There does not have to be a compromise (The Cancer of Compromise).

While life has a great deal to offer you – what have you got to offer life?

Consider the four legs of your table again:

What are you learning?
Who are you loving?
How are you living?
What is your legacy to the world?
How can you make them all part of the plan today?

Your ability to truly succeed in the long term depends on it!

Further Reading:
Breakthrough by David CM Carter(Amazon Link UK, US)

If the above topic, or indeed any of my blogs are of interest to you, then contact me and let’s talk! Drop me an email at getintouch@marcwinn.com.

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