Momentum Podcast: 716

Process Will Protect Your Marriage and Grow Your Business

by Alex Charfen

Episode Description

Process creates intimacy, and can rebuild a marriage or any relationship.

Alex Charfen, a business growth coach who helps entrepreneurs grow and scale their businesses, gives practical, tangible, and actionable tips that you can implement into your business right now.

A couple weeks ago I got a call from a friend of mine who let me know that he was having issues in his marriage. He and his wife were not ready to get divorced, they weren’t fighting, they were just in a place of apathy.

Years ago, they both started withholding and not sharing everything in their marriage. The small degree changes day after day resulted in a place where they are now miles apart and are more like a business partnership than a marriage. 

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Full Audio Transcript

This is the Momentum podcast. As an as a coach for entrepreneurs for over 20 years, I'm approaching 30 years now, here's what I can tell you about entrepreneurial marriages. Entrepreneurial marriages fail for one reason, a lack of intimacy. I'm Alex Charfen, and this is the momentum podcast made for empire builders, game changers, trailblazer, shot takers, record breakers, world makers and creators of all kinds, those among us who can't turn it off and don't know why anyone would want to. We challenge complacency, destroy apathy, and we are obsessed with creating momentum so we can roll over bureaucracy and make our greatest contribution. Sure, we pay attention to their rules, but only so that we can bend them, break them, then rewrite them around our own will.

We don't accept our destiny. We define it. We don't understand defeat because you only lose if you stop. And we don't know how. While the rest of the world strives for average and clings desperately to the status quo, we are the minority, the few who are willing to hallucinate. There could be a better future. And instead of just daydreaming of what could be, we endure the vulnerability and exposure it takes to make it real. We are the evolutionary hunters, clearly the most important people in the world, because entrepreneurs are the only source of consistent, positive human evolution and we always will be. I've been thinking a lot about this conversation that I had a friend with a friend of mine a couple of weeks ago around his it was the conversation was almost entirely about his relationship. And it's a conversation that I've had with entrepreneurs over and over again.

So basically, he called me and we started talking about his marriage and he let me know that. That he wasn't getting divorced, that he wasn't in a place where he was fighting with his wife, that there wasn't anything that was like an acute issue, but that he has been doing some personal development work and has been going to a couple of events to kind of discover what's going on in his life. And here's what he found, that the. Marriage that he has is more like a business partnership and the passion and the excitement and everything that he felt at the beginning of his marriage has waned and gone out of it. And he's in this place where he told me that he and his wife were a lot more like business partners than they were like somebody who was married, married. And so as an as a coach for entrepreneurs for over 20 years, I'm approaching 30 years. Now, here's what I can tell you about entrepreneurial marriages. Entrepreneurial marriages fail for one reason, a lack of intimacy.

The intimacy is either broken or intimacy is given up over time, like marriages in my in my experience. And remember, I work with one avatar, one archetype, the entrepreneur. So for entrepreneurial marriages, here's what I see over and over again. The marriage is energetically when they're not intimate, when intimacy is not created on purpose, when there is not a process that's supporting the marriage. Here's what often happens.

The marriage diverges into one of two columns. The first one is the one I just described. It's like we're business partners. We've lost the you know, we've lost a lot of the energy in the relationship. It's kind of a detuned relationship. The passion is gone. The excitement is gone. Often when I see entrepreneurs who go in this path get divorced, they say things like, well, we just became best friends and we realized we shouldn't be in a marriage anymore. Which always shocks me because I'm like, you should be married to your best friend. I know I am. And then the other part, the entrepreneur. Entrepreneurial marriages go when they lose. Intimacy is anger. Intimacy is lost. And that creates this feeling of anger and betrayal and a lack of trust and vulnerability and frustration on the part of one or both people in the marriage. Either way, the marriage has lost intimacy. And it's incredibly. The energizing as an entrepreneur, you know, my one of my my really good friends now and and coaches, Kylie Ryan, says that the your relationship in a marriage is what governs your nervous system, is what governs how you approach the world and what governs how you run your business.

And so process is a way to not only protect and reinforce your marriage, keep yourself out of those two lanes, but it's also a way to improve your nervous system function and grow your business like crazy. So let me let me take you through why I say process, protect your marriage and will grow your business. So first of all, here's here's here's what happens in marriages. Trust is broken down through a lack of communication and through unspoken expectations. If you're married, can you, like, confirm this with me that, you know, in in your marriage, when there isn't communication, that trust is broken down. And when you don't have clear expectations, trust is broken down even further. And then when you look at what happens in a lot of entrepreneurial marriages, entrepreneurs assume the marriage is going to be OK.

We don't put process in place. We don't put structure in place. We don't put routine in place for our marriage. We do that for our business, but we don't do it for the marriage because marriage is just supposed to work. I mean, we have this this unfair expectations that a marriage is just supposed to work. And that's not how it really works in my experience. Remember, working with entrepreneurs, only entrepreneurs. I think this applies to a lot of people. But I know it applies to entrepreneurs. And here's what happens in relationships. Early on, we have this this breakdown of communication. And then there was a breakdown of trust because of unspoken expectations. And here's what happens. One small degree at a time, we start pulling away from the marriage. We don't communicate what's really going on either because we're dismissing and we're we're in a reserved place or because we're in the angry place. We stop communicating. We stop sharing what's really happening. We stop sharing what's going on for us. We are withholding over time.

And here's what withholding does in any relationship, whether it's your marriage, whether it's a relationship in your business, whether it's a relationship on your leadership team. If you're not telling people what's going on, the very act of withholding, whether they know it or not, breaks down intimacy. It challenges intimacy in any relationship. Now, here's what's interesting. Intimacy in relationships is created through time, like we need to have time with each other. To be intimate is created through trust. We need to trust the time together to be intimate, and it's created through doing the same things over and over again. So intimacy is literally created through process, structure and routine in a marriage.

My wife Cadey says she has this great quote that she shares her husband's process in a marriage may not sound sexy, but you end up having a lot more sex. And here's why. When you create a simple process in your marriage and I'm going to share mine, I'm going to share the one that I shared with my friend who who called me my wife. And I sit down every day and we use our momentum planning system. So this is our moment. And planner entrepreneurs, hundreds of entrepreneurs, thousands of entrepreneurs now around the world are using this system. And each night, here's what I do. At the end of each day, I close a day and I write down what am I grateful for and where did I win today? And I write it in a level of detail so that I'm creating an intimate conversation with my wife. And we do this with our daughters as well. The four of us sit down. We do a family alignment so each person shares what they were grateful for from the day and what did they win today? And then we have dinner.

And that that that that acknowledgment of what I'm grateful for and where I went. Here's what I know about this. This creates particular activation and it scientifically will make it so that I find more to be grateful for, more to win around. And when I write it at a level of detail and I share it with my family, I share it with my wife, I create intimacy with my wife and my daughters. And because we're doing it at the same time every day, because there's a schedule, because we can trust it, it actually creates that consistency that increases trust in a relationship. You want more trust in your relationship, be more consistent and create more intimacy. And then the second thing that we do is each morning we sit down and we share our daily planning. And there's four sections to our daily planner. Do you see that? There's no calendar. Here's just all these whiteboard spaces.

That's why this is the first planner created exclusively for entrepreneurs. If you're an entrepreneurial personality type, if you read my book, if you hear me talk, if you relate to what I say, this planner is going to completely change your life. So each morning we sit down and there's four sections of this planner. And so check this out. I have it to do list and I have a schedule, but when I write down is what is my intention for the day. And so my intention for today, I'll share with you. I want to connect with my girls on the way to school. So we talked in the car. I intentionally said that I wanted to do that. I want to I'm with Cadey for the week, so it's filled with momentum. I want to hold space in my operational tie so that we get everything we need to. Out of that meeting. I want to connect with and support Eddie in our marketing tie.

I want to have fun in our sales training today and then have a really awesome work session. And so I put that down is my intention. It's not my to do list. This is what I want to get out of the things that I'm doing. And then I also wrote down where am I uncomfortable yesterday? So every day I review the day before I. I say what was uncomfortable, what was frustrating, what took away my momentum and how can I get it back? How can I can I go in the right direction? And so yesterday, my boys, my girls were on screens when they weren't supposed to be on. We made some changes in our family processes that I'm getting adjusted to. And we had a call yesterday, Cadey, and I wish there was some weird energy with the other people were still trying to figure it out. That happens to us often. And so and then I share the top three things that I'm going to do. Like the top three things today is I'm going to do my apple parental controls. I'm getting the kids computers set up. I'm reading my human design profile and I'm reading 10 pages of another book.

And then I've got some meetings that I have to have with my team. So each day here's what happens. My family sits down and we create intimacy. This process actually creates intimacy. I get to hear from each of them what they're doing and what they want to do. And then that process of sitting down every day brings you back together. So the hurt feelings and the miscommunications and the missed expectations that happen in a relationship process actually slows those back together. Process brings you back together. Process creates the trust, the space, the consistency through which intimacy is created. And so this is how this creating intimacy with your spouse and with your family is going to blow up your business. Because when you think about it as an entrepreneur, the relationship you have with your spouse is the most intimate relationship you have, period. Even if you're fighting, even if you're in the place where you're separated, it's who you're sleeping with. It's who you're you're around every day is who you eat meals with.

It's who you're grading your life with. If it's a challenging relationship, then you have a challenging relationship in the most important place in your life. And so when you sit down and you intentionally create intimacy in that relationship, when you intentionally create connection in that relationship, consistency in that relationship, you bring yourselves closely together. Here's what happens, because you're intentionally creating that that intimacy, that process, that consistency, trusting your marriage goes up connection and your marriage goes up, whether you're in that place where you're disconnected or you're angry and fighting and you start moving back to that place of trust, you start removing that withholding that you have by sitting down every day and sharing what's really going on. You're doing the opposite of withholding.

You're doing the opposite of stepping out of the marriage. You're actually creating the intimacy and the trust and the consistency through which you can create an incredibly strong marriage. And here's what I can tell you. After having coach entrepreneurs for twenty years, can you build a business if you do not have intimacy in your marriage? Yes, I've seen a lot of people do it. Can you build a business that you're excited about, where you're happy in your life and where you're happy in your relationships and you're happy with your team when you don't have intimacy in your marriage? I present to you that it's incredibly difficult. I know there's a lot of entrepreneurs out there that don't want to hear that. I know there's a lot of entrepreneurs out there. They're like, I'm not going to work on my marriage right now.

I'm just going to build my business. If you don't think this happens, if you're sitting there thinking, like, what is he talking about? A few years ago, I was at a mastermind where I actually saw a woman from stage say, you know, the one of the ways that I built my business without my husband's interferences, I just don't tell him about it anymore. So the entrepreneurial world does say you can you can remove intimacy of intimacy from your marriage and still go out and be wildly successful in business. I think it's absolutely false. I think if your marriage is challenged and it's frustrating and it's having a hard time and it's not something you're going to exit, you're staying in that area of either disconnection or anger. You are d tuning and reducing and and preventing yourself from making the impact you truly can make in your marriage or in your not just your marriage, but in your business and in your life, period. When you check back in create process structure and routine consistency and intimacy. Like my wife says, not only will process in your marriage end up, you'll have a lot more sex, but you'll also be more connected.

Your nervous systems will calm down, you'll feel more confident in the world, and you'll go out and make the change you really want to make. Intimacy in a marriage created through process will improve everything in your life. If you're interested in understanding more about the momentum planning system, I'd love to share it with you. Just make a comment below and I'll drop a link and you can check it out. This is a pretty simple ninety nine dollars product, but this has saved more entrepreneurial marriages than any tool I know of, probably kids. It's the tool I use every time some of these marriages in trouble. But here's what's really cool.

My friend who called me a couple of weeks ago, I checked in with him last week and he said he and his wife are sitting down every morning. They just come into the process and that's been exciting and confirming and he can feel them connect him again. And that is what it's really all about. And I can't wait to see what happens with his business and what happens with the change he's making in the world, because he's an incredible entrepreneur and I know things are going to blow up for him.

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