Wu-Wei & Entrepreneurship
The concept of wu-wei holds great value to better cope with the challenges many entrepreneurs face during their day to day actions and life.
While the ultimate goal of wu-wei may appear counterintuitive to the everyday realities of business professionals such as; producing economic returns, creating marketable solutions that change the world, leading and growing a team, and manipulating your environment. The Taoist concept of effortless action holds great power.
Professionals and business leaders can benefit from adopting the fundamental ideas of wu-wei as effortless action in the following ways:
A. Achieve zen.
Practicing wu-wei can foster a more relaxed and zen perspective of what needs to be accomplished, and how to go about accomplishing it. The self-reflective and observational qualities of wu-wei, and Taoism in general, encourage entrepreneurs to set time aside during the work week to meditate on ways to improve how they approach, process, manage and cope with the challenges within and outside of the workplace.
Practicing zen endows individuals with greater power over their actions, desires, perspectives and beliefs.
B. Achieve greater efficiency in all actions.
Entrepreneurs, particularly in dynamic environment of our time, are constantly rifling through tasks, often multi-tasking, and typically experience thousands of distractions that affect the quality of their work, and the living experience of doing their work.
Practicing wu-wei cultivates a powerful sense of focus and of being in the present.
By embracing effortless action, professionals can limit the effect of distractions, and boost their confidence to more easily and efficiently achieve the tasks demanded of them.
C. Become more attuned with the internal environment.
Wu-wei demands that one become closer to the Tao. Applying that principle to the workplace means developing a heightened awareness of what is happening around you and how it affects the broad long-term strategy of your business.
With this frame of mind, entrepreneurs can better understand the needs of their colleagues and of the workplace, and act upon them with the goal of becoming a more attuned co-worker, a more inspiring professional, a more compassionate leader, and a more effective entrepreneur.
D. Become more attuned with the external environment.
In the same way that practicing wu-wei can help professionals become more attuned with the internal environment of their workplace. Wu-wei can also help professionals become more aware of their external environment to better manage the relentless changes that naturally take place, and which can negatively or positively affect their business.
With a heightened external awareness, leaders can anticipate how indirect forces can impact their business, and discover new opportunities that many not be self-evident.
Practicing wu-wei can help entrepreneurs develop a more nimble and open mindset to more effectively navigate their company through a constantly evolving environment over the long term.
E. Achieve a greater sense of personal and collective spirituality.
Practicing Wu-wei is at the same time a practical and metaphysical exercise. Observing the outside world and conditioning oneself to better exist within it represents a personal exercise of self-discovery, self-acknowledgement, and self-improvement to become more aligned with the natural world.
Thus, practicing wu-wei can enhance the way entrepreneurs and professionals spiritually understand their roles among each other, within their company, in their community and across the globe.
F. Achieve equilibrium.
Wu-wei means becoming alined with the Tao as a natural state of being in harmony or in equilibrium with nature. Practicing wu-wei can help entrepreneurs achieve a better life balance between all of the internal and external forces that affect their experience of life within and outside of the workplace.
By achieving greater balance, entrepreneurs can more efficiently cope with their personal and professional challenges, and master them so that what was once considered difficult can become easy and second nature.
G. Live with compassion.
Aligning oneself with the Tao, or to a professional environment requires self-sacrifice and the unconditional belief and/or love for the project, the business, it's people, and the greater environment.
In this way, practicing wu-wei in a professional context demands that entrepreneurs exude positive energy and practice compassion towards others, even to those who may not share their perspective and personal drive for self-improvement.
By being compassionate towards others, others will eventually offer compassion towards you, and in doing so strengthen the professional and human bonds you share.
With these valuable insights into the positive affects of wu-wei established, leaders should acknowledge that there are limits to the effectiveness of wu-wei principles for entrepreneurs.
Wu-wei is a very complex and purposefully undefined concept, which is it's strength and also it's weakness. To be properly understood and applied the principles of wu-wei require creativity, belief and confidence.
When effectively embraced, the Taoist principle can offer amazing insights into the way we act, what motivates us to act, and how our actions impact ourselves and the people around us. And, by practicing zen and the concepts of wu-wei entrepreneurs can more easily balance every aspect related to initiating a company and managing their business.
These insights can offer entrepreneurs unexpected, powerful and hidden wisdoms to improve their professional development, and cultivate of a more harmonious and effective work place.
Ultimately, the goal of practicing wu-wei is to transform what is difficult into something easy.
Overtime, the discipline can help revolutionize the way entrepreneurs think about everyday tasks and challenges, from things that need to be done, to things that are done because doing them becomes simply natural.