It’s a Really Good Thing
There’s this game I invented called “It’s a Really Good Thing”. (OK, I call it a “game” but really it’s an exercise in focus and discipline and reflection and appreciation.)
Here’s what I mean:
I’ll say to myself, “It’s a really good thing THIS happened, because now we can do THAT.”
For example, IT WAS A REALLY GOOD THING two years ago that we did some deep work on our human resources, including new software, updated job descriptions, re-prioritized responsibilities, and more, because now we’ve been able to adapt to the pandemic environment with very few bumps in the road. Our team has been solid and prepared, in large part because many months ago we invested so much time and energy into redefining our organizational picture. Back then, it was a huge, tedious project … one that I wanted to give up on several times! But it’s a REALLY good thing we did it, because we’ve never been stronger.
Sometimes I play this game with smaller victories too. IT’S A REALLY GOOD THING, for example, that I got proactive about the kids’ chore list because now we’re all trapped in the house together 24/7. Ha!
You can probably think of endless examples in your own life (that may or may not have to do with kids!). Maybe it’s a really good thing you finished paying off your business debt before the pandemic, because now your business has some breathing room in its cash flow. Or maybe it’s a good thing you leveled up your technology because now you have more ways to serve your clients.
There’s a way you can flip the script too, and look at the disappointments or failures you’ve been through recently … maybe it’s a really good thing you couldn’t renew your lease a year ago, because now you have a more understanding landlord who’s willing to accommodate your needs. Maybe it’s a really good thing that a particular teacher quit in January, because you know he or she would have brought the team down last spring when you most needed everyone to come together.
I encourage you to look back over time and connect the dots. Look at what you worked on six months ago, ten months ago, or even eighteen months ago. See that the work you did then has a profoundly positive impact on what you’re doing now, especially operating in a pandemic. Look at what may have happened to you or what your circumstances were, and see that even in the discouraging moments, something good came of the bumps in the road.
Things that have been hard or difficult in your small business life, reflect on how you are reaping the benefits of those lessons now; or of that effort you put in.
I truly believe that ALL THINGS WORK TOGETHER FOR GOOD eventually, even if you don’t notice the good in the immediate results. I’m always looking for ways that prove this is true, and so this game forces me to take stock of where things stand for the better.
I think it’s important to acknowledge the graces of the day no matter what, that if you have the discipline to focus your mind on the good stuff, the hard stuff (and even the bad stuff) feels more tolerable. At some point, THIS time in history is going to be a good thing too … and I mean that with no disrespect to the sorrow it has brought many people across the world. What I mean is that the work you’re doing and the impact you’re having will be proven in time, as we move forward and eventually heal. Distance gives us a clearer perspective of our growth and our accomplishments.
Anytime you find yourself discouraged, or even if you just need a boost to get through the day, give this game a try. Think about how if you were to fast forward months or years ahead, you might say, “Wow, it’s a really good thing that …”
We only get where we’re supposed to go by living confidently in our journey; by owning our direction and choices. So if you can appreciate where you’ve been, you can see yourself in that positive light. Your story is something to be proud of—learn from it and never forget it!