5 Business Lessons we can all Learn From Surfing
(Wetsuit NOT Required)
We like surfing a lot, not just because we live in Orange County where we’re minutes away from some pretty incredible surf spots, but because it’s taught us some stuff. We know how to relieve stress after a long day by just being on the water, and how to work hard at something despite countless and repeated wipeouts. And surfing has a few things to teach you too — about being a more productive worker and an overall better person. Here’s what we’ve learned.
1. Only chase the waves you want to catch.
Wave selection is crucial to any great surf session. It’s important to be selective and only chase the good ones. And the same goes for business opportunities. Be strategic when new opportunities come your way — i.e., don’t go after every wave. Chase the ones that make sense and provide the best benefits.
2. Fall and get right back up.
Falling is an inevitable part of surfing. You can fall on every wave, but what matters is that you hop back on your board. That’s the only way you’ll become a better surfer, and that mentality can make you a better worker too. Listen, you’re going to fail at some point. And when that happens you’re either going to learn from it and move on or pack up and go home. Take our advice, when it happens, get back on the board.
3. Be patient.
Surfing is all about patience. There’s a lot of sitting around in surfing. It’s not uncommon for a good wave to take 10–15 minutes to roll through. But rather than get frustrated by the waiting, surfers embrace it. Cultivate this same kind of patience at work — with others and with yourself.
4. Be ready for anything.
The ocean is unpredictable. No two waves are the same and surfers are constantly adapting to changing weather conditions. You know what else is unpredictable? Life, and business is no exception. Maybe your Internet decided to quit today, maybe that person you were counting on to give that presentation didn’t show up. No matter what’s hurled at you, adapt, react, and work through it.
Commitment in surfing is key. When you see a wave you want, you don’t have time to second-guess. You have to go all in. Practice the kind of commitment a surfer does after waiting for the perfect wave and finally seeing their chance. The best way to position yourself for success in business: put your head down and fully commit to what you’re doing. Don’t hold back and you’ll create the kind of work you can be proud of.
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