In yoga, it’s said that one must root to rise.
In the winter season of grounding, plants look to push their roots deep into the soil for nourishment and strength in preparation for the harsh elements. Likewise, the “young seedlings” of a company must become hearty and adapt to face the challenges of the market environment.
Yoga and entrepreneurship attract type-A personalities, as both pursuits are prone to be very competitive, ambitious and impatient. So how does one build that solid foundation to grow a stable and resilient company? Here are three lessons that ring true across these very different contexts.
1. Honor yourself.
Yoga encourages us to honor the practice by focusing solely on ourselves, our breath, our reflection in the mirror and the flow of our thoughts. We become distracted when we look around to see what others are doing.
Looking within can be equally hard in yoga and in business. This is especially true for new companies, whose leaders recognize it’s essential to research the competition.
We inherently look outside our own efforts in an attempt to understand how to solve a problem better or differently than our competitors. Initially, we might try to adopt their successful presentations, offerings and processes. There is nothing wrong with emulating success. Studying others can be a good place to start. But eventually, true growth must come from within. Introspection creates a greater sense of worth and a stronger sense of purpose for both a founder and his or her brand.
To build a business from the inside out:
- Hone a company mission statement.
- Craft a personal brand story.
- Focus on strengths and niche expertise.
2. Focus on awareness.
In yoga, it’s important to be aware of the smallest changes in our practice so we can adjust as needed. Maybe we are pushing too hard in poses and notice clenched teeth, muscle strain or increased difficulty in breathing.
Founders also must be aware of forced efforts that are causing unnecessary pain points in the process. These ultimately will hinder our growth. Once we pinpoint tasks that don’t alighn with our goals, we must quickly adjust. The shift could simply be realizing this might not be the right moment for such endeavors.
To build effective business practices:
- Don’t let the fear of missing out (FOMO) guide decisions.
- Regularly review and evaluate goals for growth.
- Take notice of what is working, and do more of it.
3. Engage your core.
Engaging the body’s core strengthens our yoga foundation. A powerful core enables growth in the form of new physical and mental capabilities.
In every business, people are at the core. Strengthening these relationships is essential to advance to more complex growth strategies. It’s amazing what we can accomplish with the support of others who look to lift us up rather than tear us down.
Whether these are people in our company, clients, media, mentors or other brands, success stems from growing a trustworthy and valued brand rooted in meaningful interactions.
To build strong relationships:
- Offer to support others before asking for something.
- Be available to others who reach out to you.
- Get personal, and don’t make everything about business.