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You are the night. You are the ocean. You are the light behind a cloud. You are the end and the beginning. A world where time is not allowed. There’s no such thing as competition. To find a way we lose control. Remember, love’s our only mission. This is a journey of the soul – famous words by Daft Punk.

These words really resonate with me. I remember growing up and there was always talk of competition. Who is better than whom? It is something I believe we all grew up with. Joe was better at high jumps than me. Katie was excellent at math compared to the rest of the class. Jane was a better athlete than Mandy. As you can see, this was all around us all the time. We were raised wanting to win and wanting to be the best.

But… how does this play out at work now as an adult? I will go out of my way to win. Especially in a sales environment – where this kind of behaviour is encouraged. However, what if there was no competition? What if you focused on running your own race? What if you just aimed on improving to become a better person or an outstanding business? Then what? You would be setting yourself free from any limitations or boundaries in achieving bigger and greater accomplishments. It would also limit your thinking. Is that what you want?

What About the Power of Collaboration?

Collaboration is putting all ideas, knowledge and experiences into a pot of creation. Creating something spectacular, extraordinary and unique. These days, research tells us that two heads are better than one. I’m BIG on collective thinking for transformational change. It helps shift your mindset to think bigger and drive lateral thinking where your imagination expands at looking at any problem with new eyes to solve complex problems.

So how do we move from competition to collaboration?

Influenced. Inspired. Encouraged and Energised.

To change your mindset from competition or to compare is to see the individual or business as inspirational. Allow yourself or your business to be influenced by what you see without judgment. In other words, if you see something in someone or in a business that you love is a reflection of what you own, otherwise you would not connect with it. This is how our brain works. Every human brain possesses genius for detecting and organising patterns that are useful to the determination of advantageous behaviour. If it were not familiar to you then you would not connect with it.

What happens instead is that individuals may feel jealous or envious. In turn, it shuts that executive part of your brain where you can’t think straight, solve problems or have a strategic approach. Whereas if you looked at it as influential and inspirational, it allows you to move in the right direction and not get stuck. You will see everything around you as an opportunity and be in a place of admiration and not completion.

Your Circle of Influence

Stephen Covey talks about how your five closest friends will give you an indication of how you have been. This means that the people you spend time will influence your attitude and thoughts more than you think. Consequently, surround yourself with individuals who you strive to be like or who drive and motivate you. These are the individuals that make things happen. Collaborate and connect with dreamers who make you want to be better or aspire to be a bigger version of yourself.

These kinds of individuals or businesses inspire you to stretch your boundaries and step out of your comfort zone to really shine your light. There is nothing greater than to be amongst those who support you and encourage you all the way, making you feel safe to make mistakes and who are there to pick you up when you fall. Who is in your circle of influence? And… is it that who you want to aspire to be?

Everyone Is Unique and Authentic

There is only one of you. What you have to offer is different to what I have to offer. My persona, my character and my energy are different to yours. I will attract people in my business or in my circle of influence that will be different to yours. We may do the same kind of business or offer the same products, but we are the unique, authentic and brilliant individuals that make us who we are today.

We all have a story; we all have our own individual experiences. Your journey is different to mine or anyone else’s. You are one of a kind. You have your own strengths, talents and skills, just as I do. We all have a unique gift to give, and no one can give his or her gift quite like me.

You have a choice. You can decide to collaborate and imagine that there is no competition or competitors.

Now it’s time to put it into practice:

  • Who are your three main competitors (direct or indirect)?
  • What do you like about their presence?
  • What do you dislike about their brand identity?
  • Who inspires you to step up?
  • How can I collaborate with them?

Think about it. Learning how to collaborate is to know the answers to questions like:

  • What kind of advice do you find yourself regularly giving to your friends and family?
  • How do you help them?
  • What are you really good at?
  • What do you do that actually works?

This is how you find your authenticity in creating your own unique niche.

It’s not what you do that’s important.  It’s why you do it. – Simon Sinek