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Inside Knowledge


Mar 8, 2018

Show Notes – Marina Darlow

Resilience is the ability to come back from a crisis, from a failure, from a bad set of circumstances and is based on the faith on yourself and the world too.  It is based on the belief that you can come back.

Trained as an industrial engineer. 

Moved to the States 11 years ago.  Found a job which was really above and beyond what she had been trained for.  Thrown into the water of managing huge multi million-dollar projects across three continents. 

Got burnt out and publicly went in Facebook to say the project management part of her life was over.

Did an interior design degree. 

Felt very unsure and lost; did not know what she wanted to do with her life and career.  Worked with a business coach who dragged her by the ear into entrepreneurship.  Helped a friend set up systems in her therapy business.  That person told other people and that was how her business was born.  Within five months had a full practice.

But then moved to Boston.  Big city, dominated by a completely different type of company.  Either large companies or young cocky tech start-ups.  She had no place there.  She struggled for a year.

When you put a new system in place and then you get to see your true reality.  For example – you are not making what you think you were making.  You need to work twice as many hours as they thought you did.  I need to be there and be the comforting presence beyond the professional.

She was not always emotionally strong during this transition.  She is blessed with an incredibly supportive family; parents and husband.   The second thing, that still keeps her going, is indoor rock climbing.

Treated exercise as punishment for 35 years but then she found rock climbing and found it very engaging for her body and mind at the same time.  Rocking climbing is solving a set of riddles with your body.  So many parallels with business. 

Bouldering is done without a rope and you have thick matts to fall on.  Can’t think of a more resilience building practice than that.  Must learn how to fall correctly.  This is also true for business.  You need to take calculated risks.  You need to train yourself to only take risks you can come back from. 

Then there is rock climbing with a top rope.  Someone is insuring you with the other end of the rope.  If you fall you dangle on the rope; you don’t fall to the ground.  This creates the idea that you can’t fall; and you can take a much bigger risk.  You have to trust the person holding the rope; but that is true of any meaningful relationship.

There are no completely full proof systems.  Good systems mitigate the chances that you fail; and help you come back from a crisis.

A system consists of a container and a process.  Mint (an online financial tool) is a container; what you need to make it into a system is a process that you are engaging with.

The principles of business systems work the same way in your personal life but clients come to those conclusions themselves rather than being personally coached.

When you have good systems that show you what is happening, and automate the things you don’t want to make mistakes on, you feel more in control.  You see better what is going on and you focus on more important things.

Control doesn’t mean you constantly hold everything in your fists.  It is not stressed, fully focused, anxiety fed control because this is unsustainable.  Relaxed control is seeing the path; knowing what you control and letting go of what you can’t control.  

Entrepreneurs require lots of resilience.  It is unpredictable.  Creative entrepreneurship where you bare you soul is a very vulnerable place to be.  Charlie Gilkey says you need to be functional delusional to be a creative entrepreneur.  It is scary; it is a roller coaster.  Very intense ups and downs. 

To build resilience keep a folder with good things that happen to you.  Client feedback, people who loved your talk at a conference, successful launches.  Marina keeps hers personal – blog posts that validate how she thinks, feedback etc.  She comes back to it at times of struggle.  As entrepreneurs there is nobody to validate us especially at the beginning.  Keep a folder with all these validations, feedback and where you made a difference and read it when you feel like crying in your office for three hours.