The One Thing Entrepreneurs Ignore That's Crucial for Success Don't neglect certain relationships in the pursuit of your goals and dreams.

By Michael Fenech

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

The one thing I know about entrepreneurs is they can be so focused on their idea or business that sometimes, in horse racing terms, they can have their blinkers on.

What does this mean? Well, they can be so consumed by their vision that they shut out other parts of their lives. If these areas suffer, it could be disastrous.

So, what is the one thing entrepreneurs are ignoring? Relationships. Yes, you heard that right, whether it's their partner, wife, husband, friends, children or parents.

Related: How to Succeed as an Entrepreneur Without Sabotaging Your ...

If you're working hard in the zone, the above relationships may not get the time they deserve, and if you resonate with this, you need to reassess.

Now, this is important for two very specific reasons:

1. Relationships matter and can affect your performance

If you're neglecting relationships, over time they are going to come back and bite you. What does this look like?

To best sum this up, we need to think of relationships like a potted plant. If you fail to water the plant it will starve, shrivel up and die. It's the same with relationships.

We need to nurture them, and give them water so they can thrive. If you don't water the plant, so to speak, with your relationships, you could be in for a tough time.

As an example, your partner, husband or wife may get to the stage where they think your business is more important to you than they are. This can be problematic. Because if you start having personal relationship problems, you will lose focus. Your mind will be elsewhere and your performance will suffer.

Then you'll find you have two problems; relationship problems and your venture may start to suffer due to poor execution.

2. You need to nurture your relationships to freshen your mind

Deep down we know we need to nurture our relationships and be in the present moment. If we do this, it will save us the heartache of having personal issues.

But we need to nurture our relationships for another very important reason, and that is by connecting with those around us. We get to detach from the laptop, zoom calls, meetings and hustle to freshen up the most important weapon in our entrepreneurial arsenal…. our mind.

We cannot be on the go 24/7, redlining the engines in our minds to achieve our goals. It's important to take the foot off the gas and freshen up.

The benefit of detaching from your venture to nurture your relationships is that when you step away, the mind slows down. You have fun and when you come back, you can operate at a very high level.

Related: How Can Entrepreneurs Improve Their Personal Relationships? 8 ...

The key to getting this right

If you stop and take time away from your venture, everything will be okay. There is this thing amongst entrepreneurs that if you just work, work, work 24 hours a day, it's like a badge of honor.

This couldn't be further from the truth. Let me explain in a simple story to allow this important lesson to sink in.

There were two men with axes standing in front of two trees with a long fence separating them.

They decided to have a competition to see who can chop their respective tree down first.

They counted down and then they were off. They started swinging their axes with fury, chopping at the base of the trees. Chop, chop, chop like the piercing sound of a machine gun firing.

After a while, one of the men noticed that his competitor stopped chopping at the tree. There was absolute silence on the other side of the fence. This gave him confidence. He knew that by continuing to chop away at the tree, he would come out victorious and chop the tree down first.

After a while, he noticed that his competitor started chopping at the tree again. Chop, chop, chop and then he heard the crashing sound of the tree falling!

The man who stopped and had a break chopped the tree down first.

Absolutely bewildered, the man who didn't stop chopping at the tree walked around the other side of the fence and asked, how did you chop the tree down first? I didn't stop, you did, this doesn't make sense.

The other man responded and said, my friend, I just stopped, had a little break, but most importantly, I sharpened my ax!

So, my fellow entrepreneurs, please take this to heart. I want you to reach your goals. I want you to raise that capital. I want you to get your first 1,000,000 users. I want you to get everything your heart desires. But please always remember that you need to stop and sharpen your ax.

So, take your wife, husband or partner out on a date. Take your kids to the movies. Visit your parents and be present. Because as crazy as it seems, when you slow down, you speed up.

When things speed up, you reach your goals faster.

Related: 25 Tips for Having Meaningful Relationships

Wavy Line
Michael Fenech

Entrepreneur Leadership Network Contributor

Start-up advisor and e-Commerce expert

Michael Fenech is a passionate entrepreneur who has built multiple tech and online businesses. He has experience in many different industries and has a knack for finding solutions to big problems. His expertise lies in the ecommerce space and tech startup world.

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