Successful British businesswoman Lara Morgan explains what makes her tick from the moment she wakes up in the morning, to having a restful night’s sleep at the end of another productive day.
Entrepreneur Lara Morgan knows only too well that the journey to success is challenging. However, she’s quick to point out that a positive mindset is the key to success, both in business and for your own personal wellbeing. Lara explains: Attitude alone is pivotal to leading a life of positivity: One with exciting experiences, where you meet interesting people and enjoy personal growth. You have to believe that you will always go further and faster with a positive mindset.
Since selling a majority shareholding in her first business, Pacific Direct for £20m, she has put that experience to good use by investing in British innovations that genuinely improve the lives of others. This includes the lifestyle brand Scentered. Lara says it is vital to remain positive in every aspect of your daily life, from juggling the requirements of parenting, to being a good partner, friend, mentor, coach and sometimes boss.
She goes on: It’s so important to plan your day in advance. I plan my time carefully and in minute detail. I never go to bed without being very clear on my plan of attack for the next day. I get my stuff together for whatever it is I am tackling, in the expectation that the alarm might not go off. If I do not think I can achieve all I need to do the following day, I will change the plan so that it works. Knowing this, I can sleep well.
I always build into my plan what I refer to as ‘grey-time’. This is my buffer. It’s a blocked-out appointment with myself. I slot this into my all too relentless schedule. This is my ‘thinking time’, my all-important review time. Within my daily plan I have blocks of grey-time, and things I want to get done. I use texted messages for quick stuff, and I make sure I am in touch as much as possible. But I also communicate in advance when I am unavailable. I am not a slave to my email.
Inevitably things happen, such as spilling toothpaste down your shirt! But having a plan helps you to remain agile and organised. You require a mindset that allows you to ride above hassle. I love the saying ‘it is your choice as to how you feel’. I choose not to be negative, not to look backwards, to only think forwards, and especially about positive outcomes and solutions. I do not let petty things get me down. This resilience alone is life-changing and will positively wipe out the silly things that I sometimes observe others wasting valuable time on.
I do have tools to cope with negativity. This is someone else’s loss, and I ride above it. I use deep breaths to get through most things. My tool to cope with rudeness, or someone putting me down, is that I never lower my own standards. I also accept criticism and know how to apologise. I am always looking to learn and improve, and this means I need to cope with feedback.
I try to make everyone’s day better. My mum taught me this marvellous skill. I gain a huge amount of enjoyment and get help from all manner of people because I aim to engage, have a giggle and show interest. Taxi drivers and hotel staff are a font of knowledge in new cities and I suspect I get to places faster, get better rooms, seats and support simply because I work hard to be polite. And I make sure I remain this way even when I am stretched, pushed and, some would say, stressed. I choose to consider stress as more of a positive than a negative. It is all about mindset.
Focus is the most important skill. I find this allows me to be sometimes seemingly brutally direct in my desire to milk every moment, out of every opportunity. I measure outcomes in many ways. How one ‘feels’ matters a huge amount. I have a ticking time clock for life. I have set myself ambitious goals to be all that I can be. I constantly review all the important things in life that I want to achieve on my personalised pie chart. Each section measures the important endeavours I have and I sense check these regularly.
How you feel about yourself is so important if you wish to develop a positive mindset, and it’s especially so when times get tough. Money can’t buy you health or well-being, so you have to work at these things. Make choices to eat healthily and to take exercise daily. I often walk very fast between meetings. I get calls done and I stretch my legs at the same time. Learn to get more value out of everything you do and remember there is no such thing as perfect. So just be grateful for every healthy day.
Finally, reward yourself and celebrate your own determination and bravery. You are what you choose to be in life. Surround yourself with people, tactics and methods for coping with life’s tough challenges. And take sodding big leaps of faith by following your gut ‘ particularly when it comes to people.
Time management training. It’s priceless;
Build your resilience by deciding to be more confident;
Write lists, re-write them, re-order them and prioritise;
Delegate with the aim of being a professionally firm and fair delegator;
Learn to have boundaries and be able to quickly explain your interests. And when something does not appeal to you, do not be afraid to say ‘no’;
Escape when you become overwhelmed. Use this precious time to re-group, re-energise and re-ignite. www.laramorgan.co.uk