Josh Matthews-Morgan is co-owner of Learn Your Brain, a mom and son operation that coaches entrepreneurs to achieve their business goals using positive energy. Josh has lived through the trials of launching a business, and he gets great joy out of helping others pursue professional challenges without the hindrance of common missteps.
Each Day Anew
Josh starts his work day with an exercise he calls “‘lining up.” He meditates for 10-15 minutes to get a new outlook, then fills a sheet of paper with all of the positive things he can think of. All positives are fair game: kind acts he’s witnessed, what’s going well with his business, what he respects about his friends and acquaintances.
Josh wouldn’t suggest that his routine is superior to other methods of get-up-and-go, but the exercise works for him: “Lining up helps me to focus on what’s going well, what’s clicking. It gets me excited about what we’re doing.”
Following the mental conditioning, Josh meets with his business partner, Nita. He calls her “Mom.” Josh was living in Argentina when Nita called to say that she wanted to use her doctorate in Educational Psychology to start a business performance coaching. Nita couldn’t think of a better potential partner than her son, and Josh felt an immediate energy discussing the nascent plans.
Nita and Josh have proclivities that complement each others’ talents: Nita tends to focus on the big picture while Josh handles the details. The dynamic allows the company to accomplish a lot of otherwise overwhelming tasks, like the publication of their well-received first book, Deliver: How to Perform Your Best When it Counts the Most. The Learn Your Brain business model is centered on helping clients unleash their own business potential, and Josh believes that growing businesses beyond his own creates positive ripple effects for our society.
Hurdles and Headway
Neuroscience, positive psychology, and behavioral psychology are at the core of what Learn Your Brain does, so unpacking concepts and clearly articulating their value is a challenge. To have that conversation more accessibly, the team launched an online video series called Mindset Mastery, a program to reach more clients and more effectively scale the business.
Another challenge is the classic: time management. As a small business owner, Josh understands that the risk of over-committing is compromising the potential to do any one thing well. If you’re overstretched, it’s likely you’re not delivering. That’s a hard lesson learned over years of experience.
Even if you’re not talking about yourself much – in fact probably because you’re not talking about yourself much – you’re being a great networker. Avoid politics and religion. And hey, if there are drinks at the event, you can always bring it back to booze.
Building a Community
When asked how to best approach networking, Josh has a ready answer. He recommends going to as many community events as possible, because you never know who you’ll end up meeting. But Josh doesn’t just show up. He also helps develop the networking community as Chair of the Young Professionals Network (YPN), a group affiliated with the Athens Chamber of Commerce.
Josh sees great potential for what he views as the mostly silent group of young professionals in Athens. According to Josh, locals don’t go to events mostly because they don’t know about them. Josh strongly believes that there is no substitute for meeting people in person, so he works hard to double YPN’s reach in the young professional demographic, and create a successful forum for young professionals to make new friends, look for jobs, and connect.
Josh holds that networking doesn’t have to be complicated, but it should be proactive. He suggests creating value for people simply by showing interest through inquiry, recommending they meet someone in particular, or giving a genuine compliment without the expectation of return.