Want more success? Stay in your circle of control

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John Nieuwenburg

John Nieuwenburg has been a professional business coach since 2004. Prior to becoming a coach, he held executive positions with Tip Top Tailors and BC Liquor Stores. In 2019, MacKay CEO Forums awarded him with Canada’s CEO Trusted Advisor Award in the Small Business category. Since becoming a coach, John has worked with over 350 clients, taking them through a systematic process that helps them feel organized, confident and in control of their businesses.

Where you choose to focus your attention will make the difference between success and failure.

Too many business owners focus their attention in the wrong place.

The first habit in Steven Covey’s classic 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is to “Be Proactive.”

Covey expressed this as being “response able” – in other words, able to choose your response.

The key to being able to do this lies in WHERE you focus.

In this video I explain the difference between things you can control vs things you can only influence.

If you’d prefer to read, scroll down for the text version.

Proactive people focus their efforts on the circle of control.

What’s in your circle of control?

  • Your Words
  • Your Thoughts
  • Your Reactions
  • Where You Live
  • Where You Work
  • Your Time
  • What You Eat
  • How You Feel
  • How You Behave
  • What You Believe

All of these are things that you can be proactive about. You are response-able in these areas.

Reactive people focus on the circle of concern.

Your circle of concern, on the other hand, contains a lot of things that you can’t do anything about.

Items in your circle of concern:

  • Other people’s Attitudes
  • Other people’s Opinions
  • Other people’s Behaviour
  • Other people’s Expectations
  • What “They” Think
  • Gossip
  • Your Past
  • The Weather
  • The Economy
  • Bad Drivers

When you focus on these, your personal power gets diminished.

(I must confess that I personally have trouble doing this when it comes to BAD DRIVERS. I get triggered and I react.)

The key to success is to focus on what you can control – and to not give your time/attention/energy to the things you can’t.

A quick way to remind yourself of this?

Every time you think the problem is “out there”…that’s the problem!!

When you focus on your circle of control, your personal power expands

Your circle of control includes all the things you have dominion or agency over.

This is where your personal power comes from.

The more you act from this focus, the more powerful you become as a person.

You make stuff happen!

Proactive people adopt William Johnsen’s mantra: “If it’s to be, it’s up to me.”

Where you choose to focus your attention will make the difference between success and failure.

Choose wisely.

One of the most proactive things you can do to succeed in business is work with a coach!

If you’d like some help identifying actions you can take in your business to free up your time, make more money, or just get things running better so you enjoy running your business again, click here and book 15 minutes on my calendar: Book time with John

Go ahead, be proactive about it! 😉

The Ultimate Guide to Becoming a Better Business Owner

become a better owner

If an owner wants a better business, first the business needs a better owner.

This post is part of my Ultimate Guide to Becoming a Better Business Owner. Visit the guide homepage to get my best advice and coaching exercises to help you with:

  • Mindset. Thinking like an owner and seeing the big picture of your business.
  • Planning. Deciding what you want, setting a goal, and making plans to get after it.
  • Habits. Changing your behaviours to help you get what you want.
  • Learning. Getting new information and developing new skills.
  • Growth. Facing your fears, stepping outside your comfort zone, and doing what it necessary to create the business of your dreams.