Usually on Wednesday, I try to post something super practical as far as business goes. Today, I’m taking a break from my regularly scheduled programming to give you a bit of advice that goes something like this:
Drink the KoolAid
Let me back up a bit because there’s a story here that will make this advice sound less crazy.
Maybe it is the time of year, I don’t know but I keep seeing a A LOT of negativity amongst people of our profession. It starts with:
a) This is way harder than I thought; or A Crappy Thing happened to me.
And continues on to:
b) My life sucks.
c) This business sucks.
d) My corporate office sucks.
e) The corporate policies really suck.
And often ends with:
f) These people have clearly been lying to me about how great this could be. I’m starting a rebellion.
You’d swear we were in the Hunger Games or Brave New World or something rather than just a bunch of grown women running businesses out of our trunks. Something seems off with the system and the more others people fall in step with the Powers that Be, the more your inner independent thinker balks. What is wrong with these lemmings?
I get it. I really do.
I called it “Brainwashing with Enthusiasm”
I’ll never forget one of the first corporate events I went to. I had been in about 4 months and only had 2 parties. It was rough going. I was getting more and more skeptical and beginning to remember all the reasons I thought MLMs were the worst idea ever. I have a picture of myself from the event. Here, check it out:
I remember sitting there and watching people get awards for retail and recruiting totals that seemed completely out of reach for me. Everyone is clapping and hooting and generally getting themselves worked up into a snakehandling frenzy. It freaked me out a little to be honest. My conclusion that night was the company was attempting to keep people motivated by brainwashing with contagious enthusiasm.
I played along, but inner rebel had already decided to refuse to fall in. Why should I, I thought? I’m NOT enthusiastic. My business is sucking right now.
Trying to be Katniss
I tried to be a rebel. I did. I swear.
- I complained about the greediness of the company and how the odds were NOT in the consultants favor and how only a few really made all the money.
- I complained about how I couldn’t say even remotely negative things about the company without being shot down, deleted, silenced.
- I broke the rules (too late, Corporate. I’ve already reformed and you’ll never find evidence of my transgressions!). I tried to do everything my own way – a better way, I thought.
- Most of all, I refused to be one of those Soma-swilling followers who were all happiness and unicorns and “Pure Romance changed my life” and ooo, glitter.
In other words: I was miserable. And things weren’t getting better.
Miserable people don’t succeed
They just don’t. No one wants to support miserable people. Miserable people don’t work at their best. They don’t attract others to work with them. Being negative gets you pretty much nowhere.
Most importantly though:
I gave up and drank the KoolAid.
I kept going to meetings. I kept making friends with other consultants. I learned the rules and followed them ardently.I kept pulling myself up by my bootstraps when things weren’t going well and working rather than complaining. I became Little Miss Freaking Sunshine. Literally (they gave me an award and everything). And one day, I looked in the mirror and realized that not only had my business transformed, so had I.
Maybe you are a struggling Pure Romance consultant. Maybe you are with another company. Maybe you are working on your own dreams and people are pushing copies of Big Magic and Eat that Frog at you and all you can think of is, “I am not a Merry Man!” You don’t want to pretend to be positive and cherry and all of that rainbows and glitter crap.
Please, take my advice.
Drink the damn KoolAid
It’s not poison. It’s not. The positive people around you who are working and trying and succeeding and being happy and enthusiastic about their lives and their dreams are not lying. It’s real, but first you have to buy in. You have to be willing to open yourself up to the possibilities, tap into the collective dream and work with the tools, rules and supports that are part of the package.
It’s not brainwashing. It’s HOPE.
Now, bottoms up.