**Preparatory note: I’d like to have this conversation with your real, human self…not your noble, high-minded self.
There might be only one thing I truly hate about working for myself. (and I don’t throw the word hate around easily.)
I have never experienced so much noise in my life.
Until I learned to manage it (which, if we’re being honest, took me about a year to figure out.), my brain would be clattering all day/all night with ideas, conversations, thoughts on other people’s work, what I’d read, feedback I’d gotten, worries, doubts, the episode of Dexter I just watched, what I didn’t accomplish in the day–you get the picture.
Needless to say, this became quickly deteriorating–to my psyche, to my sleep, and on my ability to be 100% there with my clients. Bad news.
Now, managing the noise is a daily discipline for me: I have a set number of blogs I really follow instead of wandering the blogosphere day after day. My social media time is lim-it-ed. I focus on having 100% pure interactions with friends, clients, and peers in my sphere. I would much rather have 1 really solid, mutually beneficial relationship with a fellow coach/consultant than 100 half-asses ones. I surround myself with people (professionally and personally) I seriously value.
But, as with most things in life, I offer you a paradox:
I think that to be really, truly alive and present in your business, you need to remain fully and completely open within it. But is it really possible to be completely open? Is filtering your input a survival mechanism, an active choice, or simply a product of the broad exposure we have to the internet and social media channels? Do self-imposed filters limit your ability to connect and receive?
How do you choose which voices really matter to you?
And does any one really matter but your own?
–I *really* want to hear what y’all have to say on this one. We are all human beings blessed and cursed with limitations, whether we view them that way or not. We are all individual beings navigating a very, very big internet sea–and its only getting bigger. This is an important conversation to keep on the table.