Way back before Arnold was Governor of California, he starred in a Christmas caper called “Jingle All the Way.” As workaholic Howard Langston, Arnie races all over town on Christmas Eve, in search of the blockbuster toy “Turbo Man,” which he promised his wife he’d pick up months before. Since it’s the only present on their son’s Christmas list, the need is dire.
In his quest to find the perfect toy, Howard fends off advances from a psycho mailman, a vengeful cop, and his lugubrious neighbor who’s bent on moving in on Howard’s wife, usurping his role as husband and father.
After hours of careening from store to store, Howard finds himself in the town’s annual holiday parade, dressed up as – you guessed it! – Turbo Man. All ends well when his wife and son realize his heart is in the right place. Don’t you just love happy endings?
You may think there’s no lesson here for a business owner, but there are plenty. We could talk about work-life balance, or the importance of keeping your commitments, but the main one to highlight is the role that serendipity plays in business.
Many successful business owners will tell you that the second they became crystal clear on their objectives, things just seemed to fall into place for them. Sure, they faced some obstacles along the way, but somehow the person they needed to meet or the book they needed to read or the lesson they needed to learn fell into their path.
Preparation is a great thing, and it’s necessary for day-to-day success. It’s what gets us through the tough, repetitive and sometimes boring stuff. But often the big leaps forward in our business occur because of some force stronger than us that’s at work in the universe.
Consider this quote from renowned poet Ralph Waldo Emerson: “Once you make a decision, the universe conspires to make it happen.” Even if you aren’t the “woo-woo” type, it can pay to be open to seemingly miraculous coincidences and occurrences.
Some people consider these types of coincidences to be signs that you’re moving on the right path. But whether you believe in the “great divine” or not, smart business owners will take advantage of any opportunities, regardless of source. And the more clear you are on your end goal, the more you’ll be able to recognize these opportunities.