I’m sure you all know Charles Dicken’s A Christmas Carol, the story of a miserly man that becomes changed to become one of the kindest and friendliest men in London, after being visited by the ghosts of Christmas past, present, and future. He is brought face to face not only with his own mortality and legacy but also with how he is perceived by all those he had come into contact with.
In essence, it’s a morality tale, our protagonist Ebenezer Scrooge, is a solitary power-hungry man, only seems happy when he is working to increase his own wealth.
Through the intervention of his ghostly former partner Jacob Marley, who has passed away and is now serving a life sentence in purgatory for his sins and selfishness, he is given a chance to redeem himself. Scrooge is visited by three ghosts, and is told that they will guide him on a journey to allow him to see where in his life he could have made better choices, and give him the opportunity to repent and change his ways.
Initially, Ebenezer is unrepentant as he passes through Christmas past and present, being faced with his choices and decisions, those that drove his great love away from him and set him on his current past where he justifies the means to the end.
When he is faced with the ghost of Christmas future, his own demise and that of his faithful worker’s son, (and the comments and ridicule directed at his coffin by people he barely knew), he finally relents and vows to change his ways, so as to stave off this horrible fate.
He wakes to Christmas morning, a changed man, and vows to not only save himself and tiny Tim, but also to repair the bridges he has broken with his family, and be a kinder, generous and better part of society. The final scene is of a changed Scrooge… the man that he could have become years ago, had greed and power not taken him down a darker path.
It’s the classic didactic tale, arguably the reason we like stories of selfless heroes, those that put aside money and power to instead work for the benefit of their fellow man and woman.
okay, I can here you asking:
What Could This Possibly Have To Do With Internet Marketing or Your Business?
The answer is simple: You need balance! Without Balance, we are setting ourselves up for failure from the beginning.
In our own businesses, we often start out with those same intentions. We vow when we start that we won’t repeat the same mistakes of all those faceless corporations we were trying to escape. We all want to live the dream of flexible schedules and playing with our kids. Sadly, many of us find ourselves working exponentially more than the average working Joe. This is hard for our kids, our relationships, and our mental state.
In the next few days, take a look at your business. Have you managed to hit your target or have you got bogged down trying to make as much money as possible? What small changes could you make that would not necessarily decrease your revenue, but allow you to stay true to those initial ideas?
There is a way to serve both masters, both your bottom line and your immortal soul. We just have to look past the surface to find them and apply them. A business built on money alone will never last.