The Other Butterfly Effect

Are you working on the stuff you should be? Are you doing work that inspires you and makes you feel like you’re really contributing – or are you going through the motions?

And how do you tell the difference?

It’s actually pretty easy. When you talk to someone about something you love doing, you get butterflies in your stomach. It’s an unmistakable feeling – it’s the same feeling you got when you were a child and you knew your birthday was coming up. Or when you were a teenager and had a crush on one of your classmates.

Unfortunately we don’t get this feeling too often in business, because we get stuck doing work we feel we have to, rather than work we really want to. But when we do get to work on a project that we love, we get that funny feeling in the pit of our stomachs. And it’s an important feeling. The gut feel we experience is generated in the oldest part of our brain: The limbic brain. This area controls gut feeling, emotions and decision-making. Learn to trust this and you’ll perform quicker and smarter decisions, than the carefully -thought through logical decisions made in the newer part of the brain – the neocortex.

Why is this important to your business? Because there’s another physiological change that happens when you talk about what you love doing. Your eyes sparkle. The person you’re talking to sees this and immediately knows you’re telling the truth. It’s pretty hard to fake (unless you use eye drops), and it’s infectious. The person you’re talking to immediately wants to know more. You’re no longer selling, you’re guiding.

But it all starts with you. You need to be clear on what you do, and what your business does that makes a difference to your clients. And this has much more to do with why you do what you do, than what you do. So think about it. Get clear on why you and your business make a difference to your clients. Not what you do (every business does that), but why you do it.

They’ll spot the sparkle and want to find out why you’re so excited about your business. At that point the sale is pretty much already made.


Justin Cooper is the founder of Brand Purpose .Co, which helps employees, business owners and business leaders to define their Purpose and leverage it through their work, business or brand in a way that inspires, unites and connects the people they work with.