One of the main reasons I waited so long to invest in my own brand was my simple fear of failure. I had so much drive and ability to succeed while working for someone else, but it wasn’t enough when overcoming my fears of putting my family in a financial bind. Taking the leap was very difficult, but preparing myself was easy. This is why I wanted to share some of my concepts behind ditching the fear and getting in gear..
For most leaders, it tends to be easier to immerse yourself in entrepreneurship when you’re single and not supporting children – but doesn’t necessarily mean you’re against the odds. I leaned on this excuse for years. Even though I mentioned the benefits of being patient in my last post about finding value, I knew I had to overcome my fears before I’d be able to execute a satisfactory service to my client base.
Don’t get me wrong, I spent an extensive amount time planning for this happening. Hell, I even procrastinated by simply trying to perfect every aspect of my business model. I was in denial for the most part. After understanding the value I could provide, I still had second thoughts about myself and rightfully so. We all have something that holds us back. At the same time, nobody skips through life without failure. It’s your ability to rebound, recover, and execute that sets your success story apart. But, since I’m human like most of you, I knew I had to address some things in order to avoid tarnishing the brand I put so much effort into. Before I pulled the trigger and “bet on myself”, here are some of the ways I was able to nip fear in the butt.
Identify Past Successes and the Reasons Behind Them.
Fear of failure tends to stem from past failures you haven’t been able to let go. Even when competitive (or driven) people experience 9 wins in a row, they still harp on the 10th situation that cost them. We spend so much time over analyzing the reasoning behind our minimal failures that we forget about the mountains we climbed beforehand. Even worse, it eats at our confidence as a sense of ineffectiveness may begin to creep in.
From experience, the most impactful way to overcome this is to over analyze all of your successes – even the little ones. I’ve been fortunate enough to experience a blended family over the past 7 years. As hard as it can be, I’ve realized that we’ve made some major headway in less than a decade. Whether it be communication, child development, respect, or responsibility – my wife and I have plenty to hang our hat on. Not only am I able to reference this often, but I’ve been able to pile it on top of professional successes that have defined me as an individual. When you find yourself doubting the process, take advantage of memory lane and highlight what got you where you are today.
Invest in Personal Development or Even Counseling Services.
As aforementioned, self doubt lingers because of insecurities developed through past experiences. Identifying some of your success stories creates a boost of confidence, but digging deeper can create a sustained euphoria that drives your business. Whether you invest in a business coach, psychology specialist, or even counseling – it’s definitely worth your while.
Before I began building my home office, I decided to set aside time for weekly family counseling to overcome my biggest fear (letting down my family). I wanted to ensure they were all on board and understood what the next couple months might look like. It was amazing to be able to receive honest feedback and concerns on the front end so we could work through it before experiencing them firsthand. Not only was I able to understand perspectives, but I was able to grow as a father and husband. Allocating worse case scenarios and planning together extended everyone’s confidence level. Being on the same page over the last few months has lessened stress levels and tension while allowing me to focus more on results than the experience itself. This has been a huge relief for me.
Learn How to Face the Facts of Running Your Own Business.
The last phase of overcoming my fears allows you to put everything into perspective. Look, you’re going to fail. Whether you screw up and miss a spelling error on your website or overprice and lose a deal – it’s inevitable. Learning how to harness the reality of launching a business will help you overcome the roller coster ride of startup-dom.
Once you’re able to discover and understand certain scenarios, you can begin to plan your contingencies. As I mentioned in the last installment, I started off by offering everything under the digital sun. My confidence was solid in all phases, but I realized that my confidence could take a major hit if I failed across multiple verticals. Slowing down and keeping things simple has now allowed me to develop messaging and promotions that makes sense. I’m not sure this would have been a reality if I didn’t take the time to overcome my fears and establish a vision.
Another epiphany that sparked my intrigue was the simple fact that competition will always exists. If I really wanted to set out and provide value, why set myself up for failure by competing across multiple markets through a number of initiatives? I might be superior in a handful of ways, but building a message that relays competency et al is plain stupid. Honing in on my passion and capable skills has allowed me to develop a solution that compliments a multitude of industries while still promoting a unique value. No matter how well you do something, there will always be a competitor looking to overcome your successes. Don’t let it get to you, let it motivate you.
Understanding the challenges and inevitable failures of your brand will prepare your confidence levels while keeping you motivated with a contingency plan. Leave yourself room to pivot and frequently adjust your capabilities. If someone takes the time to provide feedback, take the time to listen and react accordingly. When you lose a potential client or a long time customer leaves, let it go. The nature of business can be refreshing, but it can also be quite frustrating if you let it get to you. Facing these facts before you go “all in” will allow you to move onto the next task without losing any sleep.
“Steer Clear of Fear to Reach Your Second Year.”
One of my favorite (original) quotes is the H2 title above. But, I wouldn’t have said this if I didn’t take the time to development my mindset before entrepreneurship. Although fear itself doesn’t drive failure, it sure does play a part in your outcomes. Just remember, you can only control today. If you’re able to put your best foot forward and eliminate the thoughtful distractions, you’re already half way there. Identify your mental capacity, don’t overstep your boundaries, and invest in a support group that can help you when you do. Overcoming my fears was one of the most impactful investments I’ve made. All of these things will do wonders for your confidence level and keep you focused throughout.
Allow your failures to build you up instead of bringing you down, and identify a plan to fend off insecurity that disallows potential. Every entrepreneur is going to experience setback – but, how they exit the clouds will define their reward. Thanks for taking time out of your day to hear another portion of my story. Stay tuned for the next installation about launching on a small budget.
Prepare with your own PreFocus, and best in success nonetheless!