Connect with us

Self Development

4 Secrets for Lifelong Success From Martha Stewart

An entrepreneur’s path is rarely a straight line, a lesson lifestyle icon Martha Stewart has learned first hand.

Kathleen Davis

Published

on

Martha-Stewart-Business-Lessons

From her early career as a model to her time as an institutional stock broker on Wall Street, to starting and running a small catering company – Stewart used lessons from both her successes and failures to transition to each phase of her career.

Following the success of her catering business, Stewart published several books on entertaining in the 1980s, and eventually launched her publicly traded media and merchandising company Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia. Her international brand now includes books, magazines and TV shows that reach nearly 66 million consumers and over 8 000 branded products in thousands of retail stores, according to the company.

At the National Association of Professional Women’s National Networking Conference, Stewart spoke with Star Jones, former co-host of The View, about her career trajectory, her outlook on success, and why she wants to keep working until she’s 150.

Here are four lessons from Stewart on how to stay relevant, no matter what stage your business is in.

1. Be a life-long learner. “You should never retire; you shouldn’t even use the word,” Stewart said. “It implies going off into the sunset, and who wants to do that?” She pointed to career second acts such as parlaying a passion for gardening into a horticulture business. “There’s always something else you can do,” she said.

2. Seek inspiration everywhere. Take note of your surroundings, and always be on the lookout for new talent, said Stewart. She scouts out potential artists to feature in her magazines at events like the Smithsonian Craft Show. She also finds inspiration for new products everywhere, and even multi-tasked during the interview. The flower arrangement on stage sparked an idea for a pattern in her bed-sheet collection, she said.

3. Define what work-life balance means to you. Stewart makes no distinction between her personal and professional lives. “My life is my job, and my job is my life,” she said. For an entrepreneur whose personal brand is her business, living and breathing work may be crucial for her success, but Stewart acknowledged that it won’t work for everyone.

4. Keep going. Despite facing very public obstacles, including her 2004 trial and time spent in federal prison following an insider-trading scandal, Stewart keeps a positive outlook. “I’ve never hit a bottom, just bumps in the road,” she said. Ever the epitome of her brand, Stewart said she never tries to distract herself from her problems. Instead, she seeks opportunities for inspiration, such as gardening, when times are tough.

[box style=”grey map rounded shadow”]

Rise and Shine! Life is Good. Get Inspired Here

[/box]

Kathleen Davis is an associate editor at Entrepreneur.com. Previously, she has worked as an editor at Howcast.com, WomansDay.com and Popular Photography magazine. Her freelance work has appeared in AAA New York, American Photo, Popular Science, and Time Out New York magazines. She is also a registered Vinyasa yoga teacher. She lives in Brooklyn, N.Y.

Self Development

5 Inspiring Quotes From Madiba To Stir You Into Action On Mandela Day

In honour of Mandela Day, here are 5 of Nelson Mandela’s most inspiring quotes.

Casandra Visser

Published

on

Prev1 of 5

Bouncing Back

nelson-mandela

“Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again.”

Prev1 of 5

Continue Reading

Self Development

25 Bad Words That Make Other People Feel Inferior

If the harshest thing you have to say about someone is partly true, say the other part.

John Rampton

Published

on

Prev1 of 26

word-choice

Did you know that in every language, there are more negative words than positive ones? It seems we need lots of words to describe our negative feelings, but we’re content with a handful of positive ones.

For instance, researchers have found that most cultures have words for seven basic emotions: Joy, fear, anger, sadness, disgust, shame and guilt.

That’s one positive emotion, and six negative

It’s no wonder so many of us have a hard time keeping our negative comments in check. Over the past six months I’ve been working on the verbal language that I’ve been using that I don’t even realize hurts others and in some cases makes them feel inferior. I even noticed that I’ve used a couple on my personal and business website. This is a “no-no” that I needed to fix.

This post will list 25 negative words you should avoid…so that you stop hurting, belittling and intimidating those around you!

Prev1 of 26

Continue Reading

Self Development

How To Control What You Can And Influence What You Can’t In Your Life

Every day you need to get up and face numerous challenges. Here’s how you can keep your head in the game — even when all you want to do is quit.

Erik Kruger

Published

on

resilience

On Monday you wake up ready to take on the world. You’re focused, determined and business is doing well. Tuesday feels like you’re invincible and things could not be going any better. Wednesday, your world collapses. You doubt your ability to deliver to your clients. You wonder whether you should still pursue the same business. You think that quitting at this stage is easier than dealing with the ups and downs of entrepreneurship. And you are dramatically reminded that entrepreneurship is hard.

Mix in human nature and it becomes borderline insanity to try and build a business. And yet, the reward is worth it. I therefore want to share three strategies that might help you cope with this tough but deeply rewarding pursuit.

Influence and control

Most of the things in business and life are out of our control. You cannot control how other people react to your service or product. You cannot control how your employees will show up. You cannot control how the market will react and how that will affect your business.

Related: How You Can Do Big Things

This makes it very important to control what you can and then influence the rest to the best of your ability.

So, what can you control? You can control your actions, reactions and perceptions of the challenges you face. Meaning essentially, that you can control yourself and your efforts.

Do this with excellence and you will automatically influence the people around you and the situations you find yourself in.

Override your moods

If we only did the hard work when we felt like it, we would hardly get anything done. Our moods fluctuate like the tides of the ocean. Not because we are temperamental but because the external world has a profound impact on us.

When you wake up to news that the economy is in recession, it has the potential to plant seeds of doubt in your mind. When you receive an email from a disgruntled customer complaining about your service, it has the potential to ruin your day.

The fact is that you can receive a hundred testimonials singing your praise, but you will obsess and become despondent over that one negative comment.

This means that we have to move beyond our emotions. Sure, they are important in the decision-making process and for fostering meaningful relationships. But you cannot allow them to dictate when you will do work.

In other words, work hard, irrespective of your moods, especially on the days when you don’t feel like it.

Create a calibration practice

One of the best ways to deal with this rollercoaster effect is to create a daily calibration practice. I am a big fan of any action taken on a daily basis. Not only because of the accumulation effect that occurs over time, but also because it keeps you focused.

So, what does a daily calibration practice look like?

It differs for everyone. It could range from meditation to a vision board to journaling to listening to a specific playlist of songs. My suggestion is that you give journaling a go.

Because it’s sometimes difficult to start a new calibration practice, I have included my journaling template for you.

It’s called ‘J1G’ (pronounced as jig). I use Evernote or a notebook from HumanWrites for journaling purposes.

J: Journal

For the first few minutes, simply allow your hand to run across the paper. The idea is for you to dump as many of your thoughts onto the paper as possible.

Some questions you can answer in this section are:

  • What am I currently excited about?
  • What am I currently worried about?
  • Where am I currently winning?
  • What can I learn from what happened yesterday?

1: The one thing that you want to get done today

In this time, I usually have a look at my to-do list and decide which one action I want to get done today. Write it down and then expand on why it is the most important action. How will it move you or your business forward?

Related: Better Thinking For A Better World

G: Gratitude

In the last section, you simply write down three things that you are grateful for. Trust me, this is an important daily practice, but even more so on the days when you feel as if life is beating you down.

When you focus on the things that you are grateful for, you crowd out fear and shift your state of mind to a more positive and productive one.

The punch line

If you can stick to the three ideas I outlined above, I guarantee you will develop more resilience and perseverance. You are an entrepreneur because you chose to be one. Do not allow life to impose its will on you. I have no doubt that you will be better off because of all the challenges you face. Not in spite of them.

Continue Reading
Advertisement

SPOTLIGHT

Advertisement

Recent Posts

Follow Us

Entrepreneur-Newsletters
*
We respect your privacy. 
* indicates required.
Advertisement

Trending