Success is the goal of everyone in every career field, otherwise there would be no point in getting up every morning to beat the rush of traffic and drinking coffee to help get motivated and ready for the day. A part of everyone’s work ethic is to avoid failure, a very painful part of growing any business in this uncertain economy.
In a society of perfectionists, failure is one of the biggest fears that young entrepreneurs face every day. Because of this fear, there are several who are reluctant to take any risks or try a new things and embracing challenges that may or may not yield amazing profits for you and your business. But to be successful, one must continue to leave their safety box, not holding back from their self-doubt in an effort to manage fear.
Sometimes the fear of failure is a mental roadblock that might need some help from trusted colleagues in your network to help guide you through. That mindset leads to other challenges in trying to succeed as an entrepreneur in today’s already challenging economy – negative self-talk, a negative methodology when tackling challenges, having the wrong person as a business advisor, and not being prepared for the potential worst-case scenario that can happen with any new business venture many young business hopefuls deal with on a daily basis.
There are people who view a failure as the end of their business journey and not as the step in a long progress towards self-established goals. While there are people who will loathe their mistakes instead of asking what they can learn from the experience.
The newly acquired knowledge can be put to good use by reflecting, learning and eventually making another attempt. Thomas Edison had 999 failures before he finally created a successfully working prototype for what is now commonly called the lightbulb. No one is perfect and very few baseball players hit a home run in their first at bat when they make their debut in Major League Baseball.
Fixed mindsets attribute lack of success to a lack of innate ability, being beaten down by it and become more risk averse and self-conscious. At the same time, entrepreneurs with growth mindsets are more prepared for the roller coaster ride that is a startup business, which in turn leads to being able to better analyze problems and bounce back more efficiently than others.
There is an internal dialogue that influences how you perceive yourself and when there are negative thoughts that can be mentally consuming based on performance. This will eventually diminish your positive attitudes and be replaced by self-doubt.
Instead, take a unique approach when trying something for the first time. When there the question of whether you should even try comes up mentally, replace the idea with a positive thought that highlights you are wiser for making an attempt and learning why something didn’t go as originally expected the first time around.
Self-talk, both positive and negative, eventually becomes a habit and affects the view of failure and success moving forward in your career.
If a project didn’t go as planned on the first attempt, one should not just drop the entire project and walk away. Hitting a roadblock is a new challenge to tackle the problem mentally by asking yourself a series of questions – Could you change your approach? Is the timing off?
Those who are afraid to tackle a project a second, or third or even as high as the one thousand and third attempt, provides a chance to possibly catch something that wasn’t seen in only one single attempt. Multiple takes allow a chance to adjust and see if something needs only a simple tweak rather than a drastic change.
The right advisor
Choosing the right person to help provide sound advice is key after making a mistake in your endeavors. This is why it is extremely important to surround yourself with a network of like-minded professionals who have been there and done that – they know what it’s like to deal with the frustration of defeat and failure as a young entrepreneur.
Sometimes the best thing to do is to bounce a few ideas off of someone you trust as an expert who has experienced the mistakes as well. This could be a colleague, friend, or mentor from the classroom. Don’t be afraid to ask for help or request another opinion – odds are they had to do the same when they were in your shoes not too long ago.
Besides, a majority of friends are always willing to be of assistance in a time of needs and will more likely give you the best advice when you reach out to them. A big part of why advisors help is the way they complement your talent – similar to how a successful marriage or union operates at a high level.
The worst-case scenario
Sometimes, the lack of expecting all possible outcomes can lead to finding the worst possible ending. This is why it’s important to go over the pros and cons of any choice that affects your entrepreneurial goals for the future.
The main recommendation in this segment is removing the emotion from making decisions and be as realistic as possible. By writing out the pros and cons, you have an idea of the best and worst potential outcome, but the key is to not let your anxiety affect the view of the overall situation. When prepared for the unexpected like it’s expected to happen at any time, those roadblocks can become simple hurdles to step over without breaking a sweat.
When in doubt, create a plan B in an effort to boost your confidence and help eliminate the fear of failure. But uncertainty could be a major advantage if played the right way – the most successful businesses are the masters of preparation and that can only be planned if there’s a history of failing that builds a knowledge.