CEO of Company ME: Mindset for Change

During a turbulent time – when I was broke, single and seemingly lost – I knew I had to do something to take control of the drifting ship that was my life. I did not want to die slumped over in a cubicle having never pursued my dreams! While I could write volumes of cautionary tales of what not to do, I will share one thing I did that was actually very helpful!

I transformed my mindset: treating my life as a business, with yours truly at the helm, proudly sporting the title of Chief Executive Officer of the spunky start-up Me, Myself & I, Inc.

Here’s what that looks like and what I found so useful.

The CEO Approach to Life

Adopting a CEO mindset revolutionized my perspective. I was able to be ultimately responsible without taking it all so personally. As CEO, I could objectively take stock, envision different possibilities, and develop strategic plans to create change.

As if from a 3rd person point of view, I saw myself from the outside as a bit of a fixer-upper, but with lots of potential! I went from feeling like “the problem” to being the problem-solver.

Thinking of my life as a business, I began to think about my mission, my stakeholders and the brand I wanted to project to the world. Suddenly, life became a strategic board game where every move had a purpose.

Paychecks and time-off were the building blocks I had to work with, and I now had a plan for how to use them to escape that cubicle! And the more I learned, the more I was able to move from playing checkers to playing chess.

CEO’s Need a Team

Another liberating thing for me about the CEO approach was thinking of myself as a “team builder” rather than going at things alone.

A successful CEO knows they can’t know it all, or do everything themselves. They have to surround themselves with the right group of people and delegate.

While I love my friends and family, I found that my immediate circle was not going to be able to fulfill all the roles needed for Company ME success.

Approaching it like a CEO allowed me to think of “expanding my team” not as an inadequacy in my existing relationships; but just an acknowledgment that different roles require different skill sets.

I was able to go out and recruit those people that I needed, guilt free!

You’re Fired!

Being a team leader also means sometimes having to let people go. Now, I couldn’t exactly “fire” my nay-saying uncle, or unsupportive boss. But as CEO, I was my duty to guard the business from detractors. That made it easier for me to exclude unhelpful people from the inner workings of company ME and disregard bad advice!

I also found that some relationships in my life just didn’t fit the company’s mission!

For example, I had some friends who generally lived a more extravagant lifestyle than I could afford. One thing in particular we did together often was take in some fine dining. When I decided that wasn’t how I wanted to deploy my strategic dollars anymore, we naturally drifted apart.

Whereas, in the past, I would have felt obligated to maintain those friendships, no matter what – as “the boss” I had to do what was in the best interest of the firm. I needed to let go of relationships that worked against my goals, in order to focus on new one’s that would.

CEO’s Commitment to Sustainability

Any good CEO must also consider sustainability, and think for the long-term. After all, if the goal is to architect truly enduring success, you can’t just concern yourself with next quarter’s results.

Financial stability, relationships, growth, and overall well-being, are the building blocks of enduring success. As CEO, I try to build the most sound structure and create the “manual” for how to keep it all running in tip-top shape.

But then, of course, you need the actual oversight and maintenance. It requires systems and processes to hold everything together.

Akin to presenting to the board of directors, I have periodic reviews which force me to check-in with goals and make updates, as needed. I have Company ME documents I review and update, such as a “Personal Financial Policy” and “Whole Life Assets Tracker.”

I have specific journal prompts I return to at specified intervals. I have exercises I go through to help me identify weaknesses, brain storm possibilities, make decisions and set new goals. One of my all time favorites is Tim Ferris’ Fear Setting exercise – check it out!

And when you really start thinking about long-term sustainability, it becomes apparent that you must not only consider your personal success, but the whole, wide world. We are not islands unto ourselves, after all.

Therefore, a truly great CEO strives to build a company that outlasts them, and changes the world for the better.

Be Your Own CEO?

While I’m not running a fortune 500 company, I was able to, essentially, take company ME public and escape the cubicle. It took more than a decade, but I went from broke and single, to financially sound and happily coupled. While I felt adrift, I now embrace the waves life sends my way.

I continue to approach my life as the chief executive in charge of guarding the company’s reputation, always with an eye out for improvement.

As I reflect on the evolution from a lost soul to the CEO of Company ME, I invite you to consider the possibilities in your life.

Is it time you assumed the role of CEO of your own remarkable enterprise? Tell me your plans! I love to hear about people making mindset moves!

Master Your Money, Live a Truly Prosperous Life!

Want to live a truly prosperous life? Don’t waste time. I can help!

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