3 Business Tips inspired by Silver Linings Playbook Movie and Stephen Covey

“Most people lose the ability to see silver linings even though they are always there above us almost every day.”
Matthew Quick, author, The Silver Linings Playbook

They say there’s a silver lining in every cloud and I do believe that there is something positive to take from every situation. Even if it’s just not to let yourself get in that situation again! It worked for lead character Pat in the Silver Linings Playbook movie.

Since our last personal blog post I gave the most challenging performance of my life so far, my mothers eulogy. Yes, my mother died, no easy way to introduce that topic and I hesitated about sharing it on the blog but it’s been the main focus of my life for a few weeks and there are just times when business has to be put on the back burner…

I didn’t have far to look for the silver lining…

As you may be aware I used to do a lot of public speaking and I’m now also an actress so I volunteered to give the eulogy. I was actually grateful to have something to focus on during the funeral and knew as the only extrovert in my family I’d find it the easiest.Myself and my siblings wrote the eulogy together (even my sister in New Zealand) and it was lovely to actually do something as a team. I can’t remember the last time that happened! Five of us previously spread around the world kind of made that difficult, you know?

This process made me remember a key turning point in my life, when I read “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” by Stephen Covey RIP.

In one of the early chapters you’re asked to imagine a funeral with people going up to the front of the room and speaking about the deceased. Then you realise it’s you and you imagine what people from all areas of your life would be saying about you.

This 7 habits exercise had a huge impact as I bawled my eyes out because I realised that I did not like what was being said (and not said) and I determined to change my life in that moment.

That was the magical moment that I took real responsibility for my life and my happiness and I haven’t looked back since.

I urge you to think about, heck even write, the eulogy you would like to be given upon you leaving this mortal coil. How different is it to what would be your eulogy now? Forget about everybody else’s definitions of success and really think about what’s really important to you. What would you regret not doing? Not saying? Not feeling? Not being?

If you’re someone that wants to make a big impact on the world, start in your own backyard, with your family, friends, colleagues and communities. There’s no sense waiting until you have the resources to make that big change, start where you are with what you have now! And something that we can all have at any moment is kindness and generosity of spirit…. Don’t underestimate the power they have to make people feel good.

After all,

“People will forget what you said. People will forget what you did. But they will always remember how you made them feel.” Maya Angelou RIP

How could you apply all this to your business? Especially if you’re doing small business marketing online and not meeting your customers in person or on the phone.

Can you put yourself in others' shoes?Business Tip #1 – Put yourself in your customers’ shoes

  • How does it feel to be at the receiving end of your product or service?
  • Think about all the different points of contact you have and how could they be improved to make your customer feel better?
  • What is the impact you’re truly having with your audience, not just with customers, but with all of the audience you reach?
  • Do you leave them with something helpful and useful, even in – especially in – your marketing?

Business Tip #2 – Put yourself in your team’s shoes

  • What are you like to work with – on good days, bad ones and everything inbetween?
  • Do you give opportunities for growth?
  • Create an environment where it’s safe to create and learn from mistakes – and where people get to work in areas that they’re most trusted?
  • Are you all working to your strengths, compensating for each other’s weaknesses and helping each other get and stay in flow?

Business Tip #3 – Put yourself in your collaborators’ shoes

  • Do you truly look for a win-win situation for all concerned?
  • Do you make it easy for them to help you?
  • Do you help them to add value to their audience and make them look better as a result?
  • Do you choose collaborators that you’re proud to be associated with?
  • Do you behave in a way that consistently builds trust?

And because this post is all about silver linings, here’s a bonus tip for you!

Business Tip #4 – Identify your biggest challenges and look for the silver linings

You may not have noticed the silver linings at the time yet this is where you can have the biggest growth in your business – by having the biggest growth in your character…

What are your thoughts and experiences? Please comment below…

PS Check out some other great Silver Linings Playbook quotes 

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Una Doyle

About the Author

Una Doyle

Una is a Business Coach & Strategist for Creative Services Providers (Design, Animation, Marketing/Digital Agencies, etc.). She helps them to stand out from the crowd confidently & profitably so they can attract high-level, 'Ready to Invest' clients, doing creative work that fills their hearts with pride - WITHOUT selling their soul or adding extra workload.

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