My son is 15 1/2 and he is the last “baby” in the family.  So it’s been a while since I spent any amount of time with a baby.  Once I got to thinking about it, my son was probably the last baby I was ever “in charge” of, meaning no parents around to hand them back to.

Yesterday I got to spend 12 hours in charge of my niece and BOY IS SHE CUTE!  Some may argue but I think she just might be the cutest 5 month old around!  I learned, or perhaps remembered, a few things from my time with her. What was immediately evident was that it is hard to get much done with a little one in the house. So for all of you with little ones who wonder how I get so much done, remember that my “little one” is 15 and that is a whole different world!

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If you read my blog often, you won’t be surprised when I started coming up with business analogies while spending time with Gillian.  Here are a few lessons we can learn from babies and apply to our businesses:

  1. Never stop moving. That little girl is CONSTANT MOTION… her legs and feet are moving or her arms are moving or her head is moving so she can see what is going on.  She doesn’t sit back and think, ‘hmm… wouldn’t it be great to get control of my muscles one day’, ‘sure would be great to move and walk like these people taking care of me’… no sir!  There is no sitting back expecting others to do it for her. She is working her muscles and learning how to move, coordination, control.   If you do something to build your business every day, and that doesn’t mean just thinking about doing something, your business will move and grow.
  2. Keep your eyes open. Talk about an observant one — my niece doesn’t miss a thing.  Make a noise — she’s looking to see where it came from.  She just LOVED watching cars zoom down the street behind my house.  Her face lit up with delight as she soaked in all the sights and sounds where ever she was.  Do you keep your eyes open to new opportunities, new ways to do business, new things to try?  Don’t get tunnel vision — look around — you’ll be amazed at what will inspire you.
  3. Take a break if you need one. Like babies everywhere, Gillian didn’t go quietly off to sleep… she fought to stay awake until she could fight no more and then, like a rag doll, her eyes closed and she was asleep.  Do you ever do that?  Push yourself so hard that you feel like you might collapse?  (I know I have been guilty of this one.)  Schedule time to relax and recharge your battery – slow and steady wins the race!
  4. Get emotional! Often adults feel it is dangerous to be (or at least show) too emotional.  If you get too excited, you will be more disappointed.  Many people try to protect themselves by building walls and getting cautious — I say, take a cue from a baby and live life to the fullest!  Gillian could be mesmerized one minute, laughing the next and crying one more minute later.  But without the highs or lows… what good is it?  So get excited about potential projects and feel the disappointment if it doesn’t work out because you know what?  Some of them will and then you get the added THRILL of success and not just, “hey… that’s cool… I got the gig…”
  5. Live in the moment. Related to #4 – Get emotional, babies know how to live in the moment.  I’m not sure if they are aware of past or future — I’d venture to guess “no” or why would they keep throwing things on the floor only to get upset that they can’t reach them?  Adults tend to dwell on the past and worry about the future, missing a lot of good stuff going on in this moment.  Buck that trend and stop RIGHT NOW… what is going right for you in this instant?  Do that a few times a day and you will realize just how rich your life really is.

Now it’s time to get back to drawing since I no longer have the little darling trying to steal my pen and drool on my paper.  Here is a little video so you too can see just how cute Miss Gillian is!

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Have a creative day!

Tara

P.S.  Do you have any more business lesson we can learn from kids?  If so… add them in the comments!