The Inner Work of Entrepreneurship
Are you a burned out business owner or an aspiring entrepreneur? If so, keep reading to learn how to assess the strength of your “entrepreneurial bone” and some of the most effective ways you can tap into that strength in order to succeed as a business owner.
If you are thinking of starting your own business, I have one question for you:
Do you have an insatiable desire to learn new things?
If the answer is yes, then you may have what I call the “entrepreneurial bone,” and this is just one of the many critical qualities business owners must have. So if learning and personal growth don’t scare you away, I’d like to help make your entrepreneurial journey a little smoother by cluing you in to some common mistakes to avoid along the way.
The big one is self-doubt.
Self-doubt shows up as:
- Comparing yourself to other businesses like yours. (This includes comparing your product or service, your style, or how quickly you accomplish certain business milestones, among other things.)
- Not valuing yourself and your product or service, and hence neglecting to charge the right price for it. (You should be your own best advocate.)
- Perfectionistic tendencies when it comes to making decisions. (This can have you so anxious about making all the “right” or “perfect” decisions that you just don’t do anything.) To be a successful entrepreneur, you have to be willing to try new things without the assurance that they’re going to work.
- Telling yourself you can’t make money doing what you love. This mindset takes you out before you even get started. I happen to believe you can make money doing anything, as long as you are determined, creative and persistent.
Some other important pieces to operating a successful business include:
- Doing something that reflects who you are and what you are passionate about.This may require some introspection and self-discovery. Start with what’s fun to you and in alignment with your values.
- Being all in. This means you are willing to do WHATEVER IT TAKES to make your business work. If you’re not all in, it’s too easy to give up instead of looking for innovative solutions.
- Daily planning with yourself. The main goal here is to get in the habit of doing High Potential Actions (HPAs) every day. These are actions that have the potential to bring you more income, more clients, or some other factor that contributes to the financial growth of your business. It’s easy to get bogged down in endless to-do lists when you are in charge of a business. HPAs keep you focused on the things that matter most, which are the things that move your business forward.
- Standing in the jello. Successful entrepreneurs are not afraid to be uncomfortable. (Yes, jello is cold and squishy, but I promise you’ll survive it.)
- Taking an honest look at your habits and practices. This is, in a nutshell, HOW you bring yourself to your life and career. It’s important because most people have a tendency to blame external factors when things go off track (like vendors, bosses, clients, co-workers, government protocols, etc.). External factors are the WHAT. The HOW is more about YOUR thoughts, perceptions and behaviors. The HOWs make up about 80% of the story, and they are the things you have the ability to change. Focusing on external factors that are completely out of your control is a recipe for burnout… and a less effective strategy anyway since it only comprises 20% of the story. See if you can determine the primary habit or pattern that trips you up the most, then you can make an effort to develop more empowering and constructive ways of handling things.
- Celebrate your successes. It is so important to acknowledge the things you do EVERY DAY that you are proud of. Many people are more likely to berate themselves for the things they should have done. I recommend coming up with five things you are proud of yourself for at the end of every day. These can be small things, like how courageous you were in a meeting with a new client. The purpose of this exercise is to get you accustomed to focusing on good things rather than getting bogged down in the negatives.
Keep in mind, there is no “perfect business.”
There is only the perfect business for YOU. And even that is an ever changing experience. As you learn and grow, your interests and passions evolve, you gain new skills, and life circumstances change. So, be willing to adjust yourself and your business as the process unfolds.
Is your work situation uncertain or frustrating you? Are you without a job or wisely thinking a current furlough may be just the hidden gift to start exploring work you’re truly meant to do? Do you hate your job, but have no idea what to do instead? Attempting to navigate those waters without support is not fun (yes, I do know, but that’s another story). I’m excited to announce that I’ve created The Job I Love Toolkit, with all the resources you’ll need to finally clarify how to get paid to do you.TM To be the first to hear more details, join the join the VIP Wait List. And if you know a friend or neighbor who could use hearing the advice in this article or needs The Job I Love Toolkit, please forward this to them.
Feeling burnt-out in your career? Take the Career Burnout Quiz http://CareerBurnoutQuiz.com to uncover what’s working and what’s definitely not. Receive customized feedback and tips tailored for your situation to start on your path to an improved work life and career you love.