I have a pink Post-it® note on my desk of a quote that I copied from somewhere a long while ago. It reads, “I am open to accepting all forms of abundance the universe has to offer me.” I keep it for two reasons. One, as a reminder to myself to allow, to be receptive. The other, perhaps more important part for me, is the part about “all forms of abundance.”
This is not an essay on wealth gospel, spirituality or even gratefulness. It is about, as a business owner, understanding that opportunities can come from the most unlikely places so long as you’re willing to receive them. Hindsight is 20/20 and when you look back over a path, the way is far clearer than when you were busy moving forward. What, when looking backward, seems like a straight line, was actually a hop-scotch jump and skip in real time. That unbending of the road is a distinct benefit of reflection.
Recently I gave the keynote speech at a technology conference on the “Business of Communicating Joy.” It was a rousing success, thank you very much, and a terrific all-around experience, and the opportunity might never have found me if not for a series of events that began with a Facebook connection several years ago. Or, rather, I might not have found it.
We have the choice to choose to be aware, or not. We have the choice to be open to possibilities and pathways we hadn’t started out on, or not. I believe that there is a richness of opportunities that constantly surround us. The question is, are you looking at/for them? Harvard Business Review published a great article on problem solving and asking yourself a specific question. The article detailed how asking what “could” you do, as opposed to what “should” you do, can dramatically change your outcomes. Reframing that one small question allows for a world of abundance to stand at your doorstep.
As entrepreneurs, we cannot allow opportunities to remain unconsidered. It doesn’t mean that we say yes to everything. Saying “no” and doing it well is an art form. What we’re talking about is allowance. Being open to allow a deviation, a pivot, an innovation, or an unknown to have an effect on our path, is the idea. If we change our interior conversations from “What should I do?” to “What could I do?” the possibilities become abundant and epic.
LB Adams is the Founder of Practical Dramatics headquartered in Charleston, SC. Her company provides a wealth of soft skills training events that utilize theatre strategies to help humans grow more profitable conversations with other humans.