Love and business aren’t often used in the same sentence. Yet love is what brings about significant results.
Studies show that happy and healthy workers are the most productive workers; that organizations and individuals who have purpose outperform their competitors, are more innovative, have higher employee and customer satisfaction, and a much higher return on investment; that those who practice thankfulness are healthier, have a better outlook on life, and are more likely to reach important goals; that being valued, appreciated, part of a community, and having the opportunity to contribute are the key drivers to employee satisfaction, engagement, retention, and performance.
We need studies for this?
With a little self-awareness, we know that we can move mountains when we are doing what we love and loving what we do. We also know that we are at our very best—happy, creative, expansive, full of energy, and inspired –when we have a sense of passion and purpose, when we are at peace, at play, and fully present –all very much rooted in love.
Any one of the following practices can help you bring a return to love and return on investment to your organization:
- Presence – Practice listening. Oxford said, “Being listened to feels so much like being loved, we can’t tell the difference.” As you interact with your team, your customers, suppliers, investors, lenders, listen. Seek to understand vs. be understood, be curious, ask questions to widen your view, and discover the essence of what they are communicating. Sincerely thank them for sharing their perspective.
- Play - Re-invoke the state of wonder. George Bernard Shaw said, “We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” This is true for individuals and organizations. As you are presented with something new or unexpected, instead of approaching it with fear, worry, frustration, judgment, and resignation, try approaching it with curiosity, wonder, and a sense of play and adventure. It’s time to create!
- Peace – Turn stress into service. When you notice your heart’s racing, breaths short, jaw and hands clenched, neck tight, eyebrows furrowed, take a breath, and focus on the exhale. On the inhale, ask yourself, “How can I help?” or “What can I say or do right now for the greater good?” (The greater good could be the relationship, culture, vision, values, the well-being of those involved, the example you want to set, etc.) When we know that we are contributing, helping, being of service, and making a difference, we love what we do.
- Purpose – Turn fear into inspiration. When it comes down to it, everything we choose to think, say, or do is rooted in love or fear. How we lead, compete, market, sell, hire, fire, save, spend, invest, divest, communicate, train, and evaluate performance are rooted in love or fear. Love creates, expands, opens up, receives, includes, shares, and heals. Fear contracts, constricts, closes down, forces, excludes, hoards, covets, and harms. As you make your next decision and take your next action, ask yourself, “Am I rooted in love or fear? How could I demonstrate love? How could I turn fear into inspiration?”
- Passion – Practice thankfulness. Spend today noticing what you love and appreciate about everything you do as you do it. See what happens. I often work with leaders who feel down about everything—the industry, the economy, employees, suppliers, investors, and customers. When they list everything they have to be thankful for with respect to these things and about themselves, a transformation occurs. Their faces light up, their postures straighten, their muscles relax, they begin to smile, and their creative juices begin to flow. Thankfulness invokes a power within. Because we are thankful for what matters, we restore our sense of purpose and become inspired. We start wondering how we can expand and create more of what we are thankful for.
When we choose love, we are choosing to thrive. We are choosing to be in alignment with our true nature—creative, expansive, energized, happy, at peace, and inspired. Our souls sing. We develop and provide innovative products and extraordinary service. We achieve significant results.
To learn more, read my blog, Make Thankfulness a Process and read or listen to my Forward Thinking™ Reminder Thinking Powerfully. I invite you to watch the YouTube Video I created to help me be inspired and impactful every day.
© 2012 Mary J. Lore and Managing Thought LLC All rights reserved.
Mary J. Lore is a mentor to corporate leaders, multiple award winning author, keynote speaker, and founder of Managing Thought, LLC. Hailed by business leaders around the world, her multiple award-winning book Managing Thought: Think Differently. Think Powerfully. Achieve New Levels of Success and audio book Managing Thought: How Do Your Thoughts Rule Your World? not only change the way you think about success—they change the way you think, period. With a groundbreaking approach to harnessing mental power, Mary helps individuals and organizations turn counter-productive thinking into inspired action and significant results. In her career, she has served as a CPA, a crisis management and business turnaround expert, and an entrepreneur. Mary serves as an expert resource for Vistage, served as a Chair from 2002 – 2010, and was a member during the 1990s. Visit Mary at www.managingthought.com and www.maryjlore.com. If you’d like to help Mary teach millions of people how to change their thoughts and their lives, go to www.managingthought.com/PBSPledgeSpecial.