Imperfect action

On my fridge, there is a piece of paper that’s been there for so long that the edges have furled over. On it are written three words: take imperfect action.

Those three words might seem simple, but they are incredibly powerful. They led to me writing a book, marrying a man that I loved, quitting my job, starting two podcasts, and more recently, starting this website and accompanying Facebook Group.

Yep, all through imperfect action.

I first heard those three words in the first episode of Darren Rowse’s podcast. Darren is author and founder of Problogger, one of the earliest and most definitive guides on how to make money through blogging (and these days other forms of social media).

These three words are transformative.

The power of taking imperfect action in business

Anyone who has worked on starting a business, in particular those in the high-pressure start-up world, know the power of taking imperfect action.

Could Bill Gates have created what Microsoft is today if he waited until things were perfect? Probably not. I remember for years there were jokes about how glitchy Microsoft Word was (like the one about the Microsoft car that needed to shut down and restart all the time.) Most versions of Microsoft were not perfect (arguably they still aren’t), but as the world started to embrace computers, there wasn’t time to wait around until it was perfect. His advantage was speed and adaptability. And guess what? He’s been pretty successful.

As to me, if I had waited until things were ‘perfect’, I would never have written The Joyful Frugalista. I pitched the book in a proposal, although to be honest, I was going to write it no matter what. I gave myself four months.

That year, I moved from a secondment to return to my home department where I was really, really busy. Actually, I was thrown in the deep end. That year I was busy learning new technical things at work, looking after hubby who was recovering from a heart attack (although that said, he is pretty house trained), and planning a wedding. Oh, and I had three international trips with work (including two to Brussels), and we had a honeymoon cruise with extended family. I was editing the final proof of the book on the bus to Sydney ahead of our cruise, and answering questions about the book on the cruise ship.

If I hadn’t done it then, would I have been able to provide a relatable voice about financial resilience during 2020? Probably not. In fact, I may never have written it.

Last Sunday, I was sitting at my computer desk and suddenly, I felt I needed to write. That lead to my first blog post on here about imposter syndrome. Then that same day, I created a Facebook Group for The Joyful Business Club. The vibe on there is amazing – it’s just buzzing! And so collaborative!

Last Wednesday, I did a short Facebook Live on the group where I talked about the importance of taking imperfect action. I honestly can’t remember exactly what I said, but I know I talked about examples of people I know who have ‘talked’ about doing something for ages but are yet to do it – even years after they said they would. They are waiting for the right moment, and in waiting, they miss out. Several people have messaged me since to share how this resonated with them. I hear you; I sometimes procrastinate as well (including about writing this post!)

Announcing The Joyful Business Club

A few people have found the imperfect action angle a bit odd, and have pointed out a few flaws in what I am doing or questioned the vision. Thank you. This has been constructive and helpful. I’m still tweaking things. The branding isn’t right (yet) but I can’t wait to unveil the beautiful new logo and photos. It’s all unfolding quickly and I feel real joy in this new venture.

What is the end goal? The goal is to help and empower women so that they can have successful and profitable businesses. I talk a lot on The Joyful Frugalista about the importance of saving money (after all, I’m a frugalista!). But saving is only part of the abundance building. It’s the ability to invest in yourself and in service to others that will really create big financial (and emotional) abundance.

Women in business are important not just because they are creating the means to provide for themselves and their dependents, but also because women often go into business with a strong ‘why’. Simply put, women usually want to help make the world a better place, to support others and build their communities. By helping and supporting individual women, I hope to pay it forward to help whole communities.

How will I (or rather, we) get there? Well, in the first instance, it is about training, information and resources, specifically:

  • Weekly ‘Powerup’ half an hour information sessions run on Thursday lunchtimes via Facebook Live in the Facebook Group. If you can’t make it at that time, don’t worry as you can watch it later:) Or watch highlights.
  • Training courses building from the Powerup sessions.
  • A guided book reading club of Napolean Hill’s classic book Think and Grow Rich. I will go through one chapter a week. You do not/not need to read the book to participate as I will draw out key themes. The sessions will be conducted via Zoom and recorded. (For details, see the Facebook Group.)
  • Resources shared on this website, often summarising the discussions held in The Powerup sessions.

And I want to hear from you. What resources and support do you need to be successful in your business? What questions do you have that you think are too stupid to ask? What guest speakers would you like to hear from in the weekly Powerup sessions?

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