I have always found it hard to be 'tough'. I was often found out as a CEO when either I couldn't make a decision or, more likely, failed to confront a problem because it meant confronting someone.
In business I am also finding this hard. My intention, going into this, was partly driven by my need to work exclusively with people who I like and who share my values. And this is proving so - mostly. But business is business, I am finding, and where money is concerned, most people, I find, more than match my ability to be tough.
So some mental readjustment is taking place here. I am, by nature, a pleaser. I like to be liked, often to a point where I represent a risk to my business - or the one I am leading. At 41, changing your approach is much harder than at 31, but I am, I think, having to do this if I am to build a good, profitable business.
What grieves me a little about this is that my primary traits - building good relationships, high trust, win-win approaches - rely, to a point, on thinking 'we' not 'I' in any given situation. They also involve leaps of faith, jumps into the unknown, throwing yourself to the winds etc. The reality, I am learning, is that I probably need to be a little more mindful of the realities of life at times, without losing what I like about myself and the way I operate.
Yes, I have had a difficult time with somebody and yes, it did hurt a bit. And yes it was my fault as much as theirs. But I take it all far too personally and need just to dust down, shake hands and move forward, without being all emotional about it.
Such is business, I am finding.