So you want to be an Entrepreneur! Entrepreneurial psychology is a new area in which few psychologists practice. I’ve recently decided to complete postgraduate studies at UQ in entrepreneurship so that my psychology and business knowledge would be an asset to those who want to move into the entrepreneurial head space. After success in launching over 100 psychologists and allied health into
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The reality is that Dr Google is very easy and cost effective to use. For some members of our community unable to afford medical help, Dr Google might be all they have.
Whenever a client says they have been on Dr Google for answers, I think it is great. We all go to Dr Google for information. We all sometimes get wrong information and good information. The key to using Dr Google is to consider “how” to use a search engine to collect information, and to know when you have enough information. Here are some tips:
- Who is the Author? Consider who the author is, and what they have to gain from the providing the information. Some information is gold, other is more like joining a health cult or has been sponsored by the pharmaceutical company. Make a decision about the source of each piece of info and consider its merit. Try searching .edu or .gov websites for information produced by universities and governments.
- Can you find lots of sources? Finding one article is good, collecting a range of articles with same or opposing opinions is better. Don’t get caught up in the politics of each article. Glean the ideas of what the article is saying, maintain doubt as to whether it is helpful and search for more. After a period of compiling info you will see a pattern. You will see opposing views and have a well rounded view on the issue.
If the issue is an emergency of course it is important to seek medical help straight away.
Many looking at Dr Google will be awaiting medical tests or assessments and want information on the possible outcomes.
If you are not happy with your doctor’s information and if you find it doesn’t make sense in context of what you have read on Dr Google, then raise this with your doctor. In this day and age I like it when my clients bring in articles that challenged them to seek more advice. I believe as health practitioners that we have a role to help our clients share what they know, and work with them to enhance their knowledge and their ability to seek knowledge.
Thinking creatively is a challenge when you are bogged down in life. These are my tips to giving yourself creative space. Often the same old problem can’t be resolved using the same old habits.
- Move to a New Space – our thoughts, emotions and behaviours are often set in the pattern. We go to work and activate our problem solving brain, we visit a friend and activate our social brain. If you are trying to be creative in a non-creative psychical space it won’t work as well as changing to a new place. Try visiting a park, the water, go for walk. All of these activities will physically change your neural pathways and open your mind to new ideas.
- Talk to friends – Talking activates the mind in wonderful ways. Humans need support from others and it changes how we think. Just chatting to others can help us put the puzzle pieces together differently. Even talking about other things not related to your business can help. Just be mindful of your intellectual property and not to share anything that will jeopardise your creations.
- Eat healthy – If you consider your body is a machine that runs off the fuel we eat, then it makes sense that eating healthy foods will help us feel better. When we fuel our bodies with the right foods it is easier to concentrate. For example, I can’t focus when hungry. After eating I often feel tired. My optimum creative time is somewhere about 1 hour after eating and before I am hungry again. Know your system and when you “best” time is for thinking.
Living in the moment can be very difficult for women when business and family demands cannot be shared. Women often feel they “should” dedicate more time to both the children and the business, and in the end neither gain sufficient attention to resolve some underlying problems. The most common problems that women share with me that cause them depression include:
- Children misbehaving – each stage of development is different and some stages can be very draining. Changing a child’s routine, gaining support for caring for them and time away from them can be a key to managing.
- Couples become distant – many businesses are run by couples. Couples often give up couple or dating time to run the business or manage children. Distance can turn to disagreements, and then to separation. Many businesses fail because couples cannot continue their work when unhappy with each other. Resolving the couples issues can bring back the focus to the business and make the business work.
- “Me Time” – research shows the women lack time to themselves. Women need so much more time to themselves because our basic needs are time consuming. Just booking a hairdresser appointment and the cost and time for a man versus a woman is clearly different! Having time to attend to basic needs is often missing for many women and re-arranging priorities is a must.
These are three of the most common barriers to managing for women in business with families. The balance of focus on others, the business and self is never easy. It is however much easier if you create a plan to manage.
A common problem I see is when new business ventures have picked the wrong service or product to launch. Watch a couple of episodes of shark tank and you will quickly see what I mean. Many new business owners will create a invention that they like, BUT without completely understanding whether it is able to be sold to others. Here are a few questions to ask yourself before you sink large amounts of money into something!
- Do you own the skills to develop the invention? – If you don’t have the skills yourself, then you will need to pay someone. That becomes quickly expensive. If you don’t own the skills yourself, then do you have lots of spare cash? If you don’t own the skills to develop it, you don’t have a bucket of money and you don’t have someone else nearby who has both then try another idea. Better to spend your time on a project and if that falls over you will have just wasted time, not your life savings.
- Who wants your invention? – So many people want to create something that helps others. Unfortunately a lot of the community that needs help won’t have the money to pay for your invention. Pick an invention with a target market that would be willing to pay for it. The best way is to try to sell a few of your items and see how many people want to pay for it. WARNING – not everyone who says they would buy one would. Be very cautious about a few good friends saying they love it and finding out if the average person on the street thinks the same.
- Pick a Better Idea? – Now once you have done a bit of research and think you are working on a winner. Stop and sit back for moment. Now you have all the skills and expertise to create this first idea, is there a better idea now you have experience? Second ideas can sometimes be much better than first ideas. Don’t get stuck in your own sales pitch. The next best thing might be your next best thing!