…continued from last week…
Self-Discipline (or the Will to Try)
To start and run a business, you need to either 1) be disciplined or 2) be willing to at least try to impose a little discipline on yourself. You have to set goals, develop plans, stay on track, and stick to schedules. Some days you’ll have to get up early. Other days, you’ll be forced to stay up all night. You’ll often have to work when you really don’t want to, and you’ll have no time clock or boss to urge you on.
If you find that you’re totally lacking discipline in any form, don’t despair. Discipline is a skill that can be learned. All you need is the will to try. Again – with practice, it will eventually become a habit.
Desire to learn
When you first start a new business, you” probably find that you have to do everything yourself. You may need to learn all about the laws and regulations of your chosen business model or industry. You may have to register your business entity, manage your own finances, and do your own marketing. Be ready and willing to dive into all of this headfirst. It will take a lot of study, but most new entrepreneurs have had to do it, and you’re just as capable as any of them.
If you’re still not sure you have what it takes, here’s an easy way to find out: Talk to someone else who has successfully started their own business. Invite them to lunch and pick their brains. Don’t expect them to simply hand you the key; just listen closely, absorb all you can, and ask yourself, “Could I do that?” In the majority of cases, I’m sure your answer will be, “Of course!”
Embrace your mistakes
Successful entrepreneurs do not have a mindset that accepts failure. Things are bound to go wrong, obviously, but successful people don’t consider them “failures.” They’re just glitches, mistakes, or setbacks – not failures. Failing is final. Everything else is just a bump in the road.
Successful entrepreneurs approach decision-making with the understanding that there’s a distinct likelihood that they will be wrong. This doesn’t deter them from the task at hand – on the contrary, they just focus on doing their best and conquering the obstacles as they arise.
In other words, it’s best to just accept that you will make mistakes – in fact, making mistakes is a requirement – so make them as quickly as possible, learn from them, and move on. A good leader doesn’t agonize over the possibility that something may go wrong. They don’t perceive mistakes as detrimental or irrevocable; they just keep moving forward and try something new, with the knowledge that a valuable lesson has been learned and any potential setback can be overcome.
The bottom line is you’re only human, and humans make mistakes. Just treat it as a learning experience and don’t make the same mistakes twice. When you make a mistake, simply continue to move forward. The ability to bounce back is a quality that every entrepreneur I’ve ever known has in abundance.
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