I have been spending a lot of time thinking about shapes and sizes – as it relates to business, recently. But a more immediate thought occurred to me today as I was downing 2 advils at 4PM, “I wish I did that earlier…” As the pain began to recede and my head began working again some time later, I realized – that is a great metaphor for business. A headache in life is also a… wait for it… headache in the workplace. (I know – genius) . Painful jokes aside, I also thought about my actions and looked at my day through a window less colored by pain.
One immediate realization is that had I thought at 9AM that the headache would persist, I would have taken Advil then. You see, like many people and businesses I do not like to take medicine. Medicine affects things, causes side effects, challenges what feels like “normal” state, and there is always hope that “it will just pass“. And often it will do just that – pass. However, when we do end up taking medicine, it often works, and we regret not taking it earlier. So, when hit with a spade of headaches a few weeks ago I decided – just take the medicine when it starts to hurt. It was amazing how much better I felt, how much more I was able to achieve.
The thing is – businesses can do the same. Facing up to the problem early, realizing that what you are doing is causing pain – and that taking “medicine” is not a sign of weakness, it is a sign of being focused on moving forward. Surprisingly often, headaches are not a sign of a brain tumor requiring major surgery, they are like Advil – cheap, easy to take, and provide relief to focus on things businesses need to thrive and move forward. But it only works if you take the medicine. What have you got to lose except a headache?