Blood, braces and business blunders

Belinda Weaver leans with her hands in her pockets. There is also the blog title and subheading "Blood, Braces and Business Blunders: why cooling down before jumping in can save your sanity (and your business).

“MUUUUUUUUUM? I think I need help.” 

I glance up from my sun lounger and see the crimson horror unfold. My daughter has just stopped her poolside fall with her face, and in just a few seconds our tranquil caravan park getaway has turned into a scene from Saw.

Once I staunch the blood flow, I see it – her chin looking like she’d gone a few rounds with Tyson, her lip firmly embedded in her braces. Like a gruesome Picasso, a grisly mix of metal and mashed lip.

In between tears and screams, she tells me she’s broken the golden rule of pool safety: no running. An on-the-spot tutorial in why rules exist served with a side of blood and a throbbing chin.

No time for a post-mortem though. 

I’m on my feet, extracting her little sister from the pool, rounding up pool toys, and feverishly Googling the quickest route to A&E (Accident and Emergency). Two hours later, her lip is freed from its metal cage (vomit emoji), chin stitches are in place, and we’re back in the caravan park, consoling ourselves with a movie and the biggest ice-creams the little shop sells.

And, wouldn’t you know it, the life lessons didn’t stop at poolside shenanigans. 

Only a few hours earlier, a copywriter in my mastermind group was facing a gut-punch of her own. Her main client, aka her golden goose, had decided to up and fly away. No blood, sure, but it’s a big financial haemorrhage.

While she was riding an emotional tidal wave that would pale any daytime soapie, she knew she had to put a cork in her fix-it-now instincts. And boy, did we all feel the pull of that struggle. 

Unexpected pitfalls can trigger emotional tsunamis, and you need to ride the wave. 

The big client who pulls the plug and leaves you in the dark. The copy that gets a giant thumbs down. Or that newfangled idea that goes belly-up. And there we are, drowning in an emotional whirlpool, struggling to put words to our feelings.

While some situations need immediate action, acting in the heat of the moment, in the grip of heightened emotion, can have us:

  • Spitting out words we’ll wish we could stuff back in.
  • Letting our jittery brain skew our decision-making.
  • Making impulsive choices that have all the long-term foresight of a goldfish.

If you catch yourself saying “I think I’ve calmed down enough to reply to that client” and you’re not at least 24 hours into your cool-down, chances are you’re still a volcano about to blow.

Take even more time.

Let the emotional storm pass and find your calm. Then, take considered action.

​​​​Your business will thank you.

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