People crash and burn all the time. A failed business, a stock market fiasco, an unexpected job termination. If there's anything you can bet your money on, it's that life doesn't always work out as you plan.
So prepare, prepare, prepare! Most people don't understand how much psychological well-being plays into being an entrepreneur. Knowing what you should expect and how you should deal with it is winning half the battle.
An entrepreneur should be prepared to risk.
When you dream big, you risk losing it all. And since business ventures always have a chance of failing, risk is always part of the equation for the entrepreneur.
Some people can't stomach risk. They prefer to live conservative life with a stable job and great benefits. Instead of playing the stock market, they put their savings in time deposits or other secure investments with guaranteed returns.
If this sounds like you, then hold off starting that business for a while and think about what you're about to get yourself into. Can you swing with the highs and lows of your investment? Are you comfortable with the fact that, that $10,000 you put in may never come back to you? Are you willing to endure sacrifices? Be on top one day and sink rock-bottom the next?
I'm exaggerating, mind you, but this is something that you should think about. Entrepreneurship is a lot about risk.
An entrepreneur should be prepared to fall down.. and then get up.. over and over again.
When mistakes come knocking your door, just pick yourself up and start all over again. Failing is almost a rite of passage for an entrepreneur or just about any investor. It needs to happen so you know what you should stop doing and what you need to keep on doing.
There is no room for perfectionists or the wishy-washy.
You have to continue pushing yourself, making decisions, and moving forward. Don't get stuck in analysis-paralysis. Because in the end, research without action is useless. There is no clear-cut way to operate in particular markets or in certain cultures. Despite the best of business planning, entrepreneurs will eventually have to wing it.
If you fail and lose everything, dust yourself off and try again. And that epic business failure of yours? Chalk it up to experience. The money you lost?
Consider that the money you had to pay for learning what you just did.
An entrepreneur is prepared to work long and insane hours.
No, we're not promoting the workaholic lifestyle. It just comes with the package. Pity the entrepreneur who thinks that the starting a business means that he owns his time and he can do whatever he wants. It just doesn't work that way. Building a business means a lot of patience, sacrifice, and hard work. It gets easier in the long run as the business grows more and more sustainable.
But at the beginning? Expect to think about it 24/7. And to consume you and all your free time.
This is why you have to love this and be in it for all the right reasons. You have to know what to expect. And you have to pay your dues. Discipline, tenacity, and passion for your dream as key success factors for a successful business? Don't forget to include the mistakes you make along the way as part of the recipe for success.
That's what eventually separates the people who ride on beginner's luck from the real entrepreneurs. Those who rely on beginner's luck stop playing the game when they start losing.
The real winners just keep on trucking. They will strive harder, work harder, and eventually learn from their mistakes.
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