Hi! My name is Derek Dearden, and I have been running businesses from
my home, pictured below, since 1981.
For most of that time, I've been developing software and designing computer
systems, but there's a wealth of opportunities available to almost anyone
now, thanks to the Internet.
What do Youreally want out of Life?
This simple three-minute exercise had a dramatic
impact on the 31 entrepreneurs who came to my Business Building Workshop
at the Heathrow Sheraton in July:
We first of all selected a time a little way into the future - say
between five and ten years - and then went through a guided visualisation
of what we intend our lives to be like by then...
Why not do it for yourself? Just sit down somewhere quiet and private,
turn on your speakers or headphones and hit the Play button:
(It may take a little while for the buttons
to load if you don't have a fast connection)
What most of us found striking about this exercise was how simple
it was, and yet how rare it is for us to create any kind of image of
where we are trying to get to in life. But if we haven't done that,
how are we going to know whether our business is serving the goals we
are committed to, or whether we are going to end up being a mere servant
to our business? (I bet you can think of a few business owners who ended
up in that position!).
We then went on to take about fifteen minutes to cost out what it was
going to take in financial terms to live the lifestyle we'd just envisioned.
Despite the fact that most of the participants had not created wildly
extravagant visons of their future, they were shocked to find out how
much they were likely to need to earn if they were ever going to achieve
it in reality. This was one typical reaction:
About the first thing that came up as I was doing
that exercise is the question: is this how I think it is
going to be? - Or how I want it to be? And that
makes it very clear to me that there’s actually a gap between
what I’m really expecting at the moment, and what I aspire
Part of what I want from today arose out of this…
resignation I’m beginning to acquire about actually having
the long run lifestyle that I want...
Well, if I don’t make some kind of substantial alteration
to how I’m conducting my life... particularly the way that
I earn money, it’s going to be a bit like it is now, except
I’m going to have a nicer house and a bigger mortgage.
By the end of the day, the mood in the room was buoyant and optimistic
- we'd covered both the 'big picture' strategies and business models
to work with, and the 'nitty-gritty' tactics and techniques. Participants
had made a start on creating an action plan to go to work on this week
- to move towards living the life they are committed to.