I always wanted to try rally racing. It didn’t always seem like an opportunity I would have, but when I was offered the chance, I jumped at it. I had a lot to learn through training, and the race itself was a thrill of risks and challenges. The whole process taught me a number of lessons about myself as well as about business. But through it all, the sensation I consistently felt was fun. It was everything I hoped it would be and more. I was truly enjoying myself.
And that, as it turns out, was the the fourth – and maybe most important – lesson I learned about business by rally racing. In the daily routine, we can forget that business is an adventure. Every entrepreneur or innovator who ventured to start a business took a big risk, a leap of faith. They decided to follow a path they felt strongly about. And that adventure can be thrilling, but it can also be terrifying.
If rally race car drivers become so fixated on winning — or on not crashing — it hardly matters whether they win or not, because they won’t be able to enjoy the experience. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t race to win: you absolutely should. But you should also be able to be in the moment and have fun with it.
It’s the same with business. I’ve spoken to many entrepreneurs who become so stressed about keeping their business afloat that they forget to enjoy the journey. They work hard to succeed and the daily grind can drag you down. Every entrepreneur knows and understands that. And it’s is understandable, because there are so many things to worry about when it comes to running a business. Sometimes it’s easier to say, “I’ll enjoy myself when I finally reach my goal.” But going about business — or anything — without enjoying the journey itself is bound to lead to undue misery. Where’s the satisfaction of taking that leap if only to let stress drive you?
And that’s where I realized that all of my observations about the parallels between rally racing and business come together. Don’t be impulsive, but put aside the overthinking. Always strive for your vision, and have co-drivers that you can trust (but know when to trust your own instincts, too). When you keep all of these lessons in mind, it will be easier to relax and feel good about what you’re doing.
Whether it’s learning to drive a race car, starting a business, leading a transformational effort, or navigating a personal endeavor, it’s always better if you can have some fun along the way. Take calculated risks, send the car sideways once in a while to see how it feels, let yourself recover, and enjoy the ride.
When was the last time you realized that you need to stop and ‘switch on’ the fun? Did you ever have a moment where you needed to tell yourself to not just go through the motions, but be present in the moment and open yourself to the adrenaline-rush that you get from this amazing experience of running your business?
Would love to hear your experiences!