Incidents over the last nineteen months have lead me to a new philosophy of life that spreads across my family, spiritual, and business existence. This philosophy is so obvious I sometimes forget to look at situations utilizing this new and powerful tool I have at my disposal.
Ask yourself if what you are doing right now or planning to do; is real, authentic and sustainable? If you are unable to answer yes to all three of these questions then stop what you are doing or planning to do. For me life has become that simple. I now hold all decisions in my life up to this simple barometer.
Recently a very large computer company tried to place an order with me on their terms. I took one look at their terms and decided that if I had to process every order their way I could not stay in business. The order was real. The order was authentic, but taking many orders on those terms would not make my business sustainable over time. I refused the order. With the simple real, authentic and sustainable criteria the decision took about 60 seconds.
I have become more of a homebody over the last several months. I still travel for business when it’s necessary, and life on the road is always real, frequently authentic and rarely sustainable. For me it was a simple matter of comparing the way I eat and drink on the road with business associates compared to my eating and drinking habits when at home. At home almost all our food is real. We start with raw ingredients and cook or bake with no preservatives. We drink wine in moderation. We eat reasonable size portions and skip or eat small deserts. (If you have eaten a business dinner with me I am sure you have seen me devour a crème brulee – I love ’em, I just can’t eat ’em very often!). Yes, I exercise a little in addition to the new eating habits but the result is fitting into pants sizes I never thought I would wear again!
My most striking business example of; real, authentic and sustainable is a customer who recntly turned down a discount I offered on a fairly large order. He said to me; “Jim, price is not the only consideration, your ability to support us in the future matters. You have proven over the years that you are worth the price you ask.” That customer, my friends, is one who understands that all things in life that matter should be real, authentic and sustainable.
Give it a try and please let me know what you think.