The Mindful Balance Sheet

Mindfulness is a hot topic these days. In a few words, mindfulness is the ability to be in the present moment. It is a state of consciousness. To be mindful is to be aware of what you are doing, and where you are.

The balance sheet knows mindfulness. It is always in the present moment, measuring your assets, liabilities and equity position. We can learn from the balance sheet.

Our minds are full of thoughts, ideas and things we need to do.  We are constantly thinking towards the future or re-living events in the past. Very little mindspace is reserved for the present and what is going on right now.

One way to achieve mindfulness is to stop and take a pause. Call a brain timeout from all the thinking and doing, and simply stop for a moment to reflect on what is most important.

Here is one key to achieving financial mindfulness in your beer business: practice the method of Intention and Attention.

Intention and Attention

The practice of Intention and Attention is one method that I have found useful during a brain timeout.

Intention is your aim, plan or purpose. Intention is that which is most important. Attention is where you devote time, energy and resources.

In combination, Intention and Attention help you achieve mindfulness.

First, define your Intention. Very often, we don’t have one. We simply go about our day from one task to another, trying to ‘get things done’. Start by defining what is most important, and make this your Intention.

Next, give your Intention your full Attention. Devote your time, energy and resources to your Intention. Nurture your Intention, and treat it with special care. After all, it is the most important thing.

The Mindful Balance Sheet

The Intention and Attention method can be applied to most any area of your personal or professional life. For the purpose of this article, we’ll focus on how this method can be applied towards financial mindfulness. Let’s start with our friend the balance sheet.

The balance sheet measures assets, liabilities and equity. It records what you own, what you owe, and the net worth of the company. Everything is kept all in one place, and all in the here and now. The balance sheet lives in the present moment.

Inventory is one of the biggest assets on the balance sheet. If we apply the Intention and Attention method to this asset, it might look something like this:

Intention: Define your aim, plan or purpose. We will reduce inventory Days on Hand by 10% in the next quarter.

Attention: Devote your time, energy and resources to your Intention. We will track, measure and communicate our Intention to everyone in the company that can help us realize this purpose.

Use Financial Mindfulness in your Beer Business

Let us learn a lesson from the balance sheet and practice mindfulness. For the balance sheet, the present moment is the only moment. This is how it should be for you and me as well: Financial mindfulness, in the present moment.

Take a brain timeout from all the thinking and doing and use the Intention and Attention method. Try this with an important financial measure you are trying to improve, such as inventory days on hand or days outstanding in accounts receivable.

Use the ideas in the Art of Cash Flow White Paper. Here you’ll learn the Five Drivers of Cash Flow. Improving each cash flow driver can be your Intention, and lead directly to increased cash in your beer business. The guide can show you how.

Breathe in, breathe out. Find your center. Become one with your balance sheet. Begin the practice of Financial Mindfulness today.