The founders of Outsider coffee know that great love and great achievement involve great risk.
Lindsay McPhail said about starting a business together, “It has to be a balance of radical honesty with ourselves and also speaking the truth in love.”
In this episode of Happiness in Progress, Lindsay and C.J. McPhail talk about building a business together, facing big risks and growing as a couple.
C.J. and Lindsay McPhail have been married for more than 20 years. They’re the parents of four boys. In the past nine years, they have written several books, launched an outreach called Fight Night, a retreat series called STRIKE and a unique coffee drive thru experience called Outsider.
Partners in Business and Marriage
C.J. and Lindsay have worked together on several different ventures. Lindsay points out – when you’re partners in business you have no other choice but to figure it out.
“In business, you have to talk it out. There’s no ‘I got my feelings hurt so now I’m going to be passive aggressive because now we have staff and we have things that have to be done,” Lindsay said.
She says taking the risk as a couple to go into business together has taught them to address issues quickly. She shares that sometimes they do it well and sometimes they don’t.
This time around in their business – as the owners of Outsider Coffee – they’ve put all the chips on the table. C.J. quit his job in Corporate America, letting go of health benefits and a fall-back salary.
“It’s made us want to risk more,” Lindsay says.
As I said, great love and great accomplishment require great risk. This is something the McPhails have learned well as the first year of the running the coffee stand, there was a lot of stress.
But getting through that year taught them that “together we made it through one of – quite possibly the toughest times in our life.”
Lindsay said they have realized the capacity they have to risk and succeed. It makes her want to quickly ask “What else can we do?”
She describes growing their hunger to risk more as their relationship as a couple is strengthened through the growing experience of putting it all on the line.
C.J. describes that same realization that they have the capacity to risk by adding, “There are risks that would have been scary to me a few years ago, but now seem really small.”
The neat thing about capacity, C.J. points out – is that it is infinite. He shared on the podcast that it will continue to grow as they take more risks together in business.
“We don’t ever arrive in my opinion,” C.J. said, “we just get to keep growing, and keep failing and succeeding, and celebrating and crying. It’s the joy of life and that’s what we get to do.”
How do Risk & Love Go Hand in Hand
When I asked the McPhails about what risk and love had to do with each other, C.J. immediately answered, “Risk is the core of love.”
He shares how when he was in high school, calling a girl took a lot of risk. Picking up the phone was risk. He says the risk had to happen for love to develop.
He also brings up, “Love is the core of risk.”
Lindsay adds if you love yourself enough, you will take risks.
“You cannot love yourself and be comfortable to just stay,” Lindsay adds, “If we didn’t love ourselves enough, we probably wouldn’t even see the risk because we would be so focused on surviving, being comfortable, trying to stay safe, keeping up with the Jonses.”
Both C.J. and Lindsay bring up that all of these risk start with tiny actions – or tiny risks.
As they mentioned earlier, start small to build your capacity for risk.
Your capacity this truth will grow: for great love and great accomplishment involve great risk.
More in this episode:
- Open communication even when it feels hard with your partner
- Tangible tips on getting through budget conversations
- How to deal with your partner pointing out weaknesses
- Check out this episode with Lindsay McPhail before Outsider Coffee
- Take a listen to this highlight episode from Happiness in Progress LIVE!