God has called you into business. You know this is where you should be, but how should your business look?
I know you are probably good at doing so many things!
Most Christian women I have met are brilliant and could do many things for a business. But unfortunately, many are trying to do too many different things and are too busy.
If you are too busy, it’s difficult for you to be focused, you can’t stay committed to doing your best in any area, you are not making the impact you want to make, and (let’s face it) you are tired.
What if you could figure out your one thing? The one thing that brings all your brilliance together is your genius zone.
Imagine what your business could look like, what your life would look like if you could figure out your one thing and be committed to it to make a more profound impact.
Let’s figure out your one thing and find your genius zone.
The Four Zones
I LOVE talking about your Genius Zone. I usually talk about the intersection of what you are good at, what you love, and what breaks your heart (or how you want to serve the world). But today, I want to take you through an exercise I have used before with clients.
It is from a book called The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks. In his book, he talks about these four zones: the zone of incompetence, competence, excellence, and the zone of genius.
Zone of Incompetence
When you are working in the zone of incompetence, you are engaging in something you are not good at, and other people can do it better. I bet you can think of a few things right now that you would like not to be doing because they are difficult for you, you know others are way better than you at it, or it’s just plain boring. So for that reason, we are not going to be using this zone in our exercise.
Zone of Competence
When working in the zone of competence, you can get the job done, but you are no better than the next person. It reminds me of when I used to volunteer at church. It was like my hand was in a bucket of water, I was filling the space when I was present, but as soon as I left, the space filled up with water until someone else came along that could do the job just as well. So this is another area that we will skip in our exercise.
Zone of Excellence
When working in the zone of excellence, you are doing something you are very, very good at compared to most other people. Sometimes we forget that we can do things better than others, and we don’t give ourselves credit. Just because it comes easy to you does not mean it is easy for others. You have developed most of your skills in this zone. Things you have practiced and improved over time. Remember this as we go into the exercise.
Zone of Genius
When you are working in the zone of genius or your genius zone, you are in “flow.” These are abilities that are innate to you rather than learned. You lose track of time when you are engaged in the activity. You’re taking advantage of your natural talents and doing what you enormously enjoy, which keeps you endlessly inspired. The zone of genius is where you can be committed to the figure out your one thing. God wants you in your genius zone because it is uniquely YOU. The genius zone is essential to the exercise, of course.
Figure Out Your One Thing by Working in the Zones
For those who are successful in their businesses (and even in their careers), Hendricks said:
“Most successful people are operating in their zone of excellence, in which they are doing things at which they are highly skilled. This zone is ultimately unsatisfying, though, because it does not engage the innate genius of the individual.”
I want to say that this was true of me when I was teaching. I know I am a good teacher, I have a Master’s degree in education, and for many years I practiced in elementary and high school classrooms. BUT, I was unsatisfied. I was not tapping into my zone of genius at that time.
What are you doing right now in your business or for a business that you are good at but still find you are not satisfied with what you are doing?
Start With the Expert Zones To Figure Out Your One Thing
The best way for us to do this exercise is to use me as an example of how I decided on coaching and how I do it from my genius zone. So, get your paper and pencil ready, and let’s get ready to figure out your one thing.
We start by identifying your expert zones. Now, you don’t have to be THE BEST at something to be an expert. But, you need to be good enough at it or know enough about it, to help someone who knows nothing.
Really, your problem is not that you’re not an expert at anything but that you’re too good at too many things. You know too much, and it paralyzes you because you can’t choose between good, better, and best.
That’s a good problem to have, but it’s still a problem. The antidote is to find your genius zone, the area where you can contribute something truly unique.
What are your expert zones?
List everything you can think of, even if it seems very basic.
In my list, I would include teaching, curriculum development, missions, Spanish, Bible, public speaking, parenting, writing, social media strategy, discipleship, drama, homeschooling, leadership, business development, and brainstorming.
Now, look at your list to figure out your one thing. What’s your One Big Key Zone? From your list of expert zones, what is the ONE big thing that has to be included?
If I look at my list, I would have to say curriculum development because I have used it across all the other things in my life. For example, I used this skill as a teacher with homeschooling, teaching Spanish business, writing dramas for mission trips, leading Bible studies, and my Calling Clarity coaching program.
If you can find a commonality that runs throughout all the others, that is great, but it could also be the thing you have done the longest or have the most experience doing. Think of it this way: it would be virtually impossible to figure out your one thing and create a genius zone without it. So what can’t be left out of your list as you narrow it down? Your answer is how you figure out your ONE big thing, your big key zone.
Secondary Expert Zones
Don’t worry. We are not going to forget some secondary zones from this list. Now choose those things from the list that you enjoy and energize you. Write those next to your big key zone. The best way to think through this is to put them side by side and see how they overlap.
Your overlapping of two areas, or three, four, or even ten, can be your actual genius zone.
For example, I would pull from my list alongside and overlapping with curriculum development: teaching, bible, public speaking, writing, discipleship, drama, leadership, business development, and brainstorming.
This combination of skills, traits, and experiences makes up your genius zone. In Calling Clarity, we have a 360° View Tool tool that helps you clarify this genius zone.
But let’s continue with the exercise we are doing. Did you write out those secondary expert zones? How many were super important to you? Too many? Where do they fit into how you want to do business or how you are doing your business?
Working toward your Genius Zone
While your genius zone may be related to innate talents and abilities you possess, you don’t need to feel pigeonholed. Instead, you can choose what you want your genius zone to be and work towards it.
The magic of the genius zone is that once you find it, it makes it a lot easier to focus and come up with ideas for content. It makes it easier to pinpoint your ideal client and speak to them effectively. It makes your service to them much more meaningful and valuable, not to mention fulfilling.
Your zone of genius activities feels effortless to you, and you are energized when you work at them.
Here are some questions to help you get even more precise on your zone of genius:
- When do you feel alive and energized?
- What are you doing?
- What are you thinking?
- How are you feeling?
- How are you doing this thing?
The answers to these questions may not even be work or business-related, but that’s okay. We talk about how to monetize your genius in the Calling Clarity program. If you want to know more about it, let’s have a chat.
Using your Genius Zone
The real thing about working in your genius zone is to understand how it all relates to your business because your unique combination of skills, traits, and experiences will make you stand out and attract those ideal clients.
For example, here’s how my list shows up in my business.
- Curriculum development created the program and kept me making more tools as needed by my clients.
- Teaching is my way of doing things. I am directive and give homework.
- Drama and public speaking are why I decided to use YouTube as one of my marketing strategies.
- Bible and discipleship are at the root of how I believe we need to show up in the marketplace making disciples for Jesus.
- Writing keeps my content fresh, my scripts coming and is helping me write a second book to help Christian Businesswomen.
- Business development and leadership. As a first-born girl, I have always been a leader. 😊 Through trial, error, and hard work, I’ve learned the business. I love businesswomen’s minds, helping them into their genius zones and doing what God calls them to do.
When you get serious about your design, you will live in your genius zone.
Success Is Found In Your Genius Zone
Are there parts of your business you will not be good at doing? Yes, at first, you will have to do some things that may be in your zones of incompetence and competence. But remember, the more you work in your genius zone, the more you will succeed.
Find the help you need to do the parts of the business you love, decide what does not need to get done, what tasks you want to delegate, and do it as quickly as possible. And start working in this genius zone right away. Even if it is just for 10 minutes a day, do it. Then, grow that time and grow your business to spend 90% of your time in your genius zone.
I hope this has been inspiring for you. Let me know in the comments what you discovered about your genius zone. AND, don’t forget to make an appointment for a Clarity Call so we can see how to monetize that genius for you.