Being an entrepreneur can be an incredibly rewarding and challenging journey. While we can have a great idea, set goals, plan ahead, research our market and promote until the cash cows come home, what we don’t always think about is our own development and frame of mind.
To keep you in check here are five reminders for startup founders and entrepreneurs.
1. Know yourself
Know who you are and what you stand for.
What do you believe in? What do you value? What are your work/life balance boundaries? What lines will you blur? What lines will you never cross?
By asking yourself the hard questions and knowing where you stand, you will be better prepared for the challenging situations you will face. You will also be able to qualify ideas, people and opportunities faster and more effectively.
2. Fail often and learn fast
Often the fear of failure can hold us back from taking action or making a decision. But failure is a learning process. The more you fail, the more you learn.
You won’t get it right all of the time in business, but you can learn all of the time. The trick is to learn as fast as you can and learn your lesson the first time.
In business, there will be opportunities that require you to take a chance, act on impulse, or make a quick decision. Do your due diligence, take calculated risks and let the facts, your experience or intuition be your driving force – not your fear of failing.
3. Focus on achievement not activity
It can be easy to fall into this business trap, but activity doesn’t always equal achievement.
While you may need to wear multiple hats to start, the goal is to pass those hats on as soon as you have the capacity to do so. While you may be great at those everyday to-dos, remember that your time is better spent on the tasks that will bring greater achievement, growth and profit to your business.
4. Remember you are not your business
When you are invested in your business, it can be easy to see it as an extension of yourself. So when you receive negative feedback, experience rejection from a customer or business isn’t going as well as you hoped, it can be easy to take it to heart and beat yourself up about it.
This is why it is important to have a way to put it all in perspective – you won’t please everyone, customers and competitors will come and go, and you will experience highs and lows on your journey.
I like to view business as a game. Sometimes you are out in front, sometimes you have to go back a few spaces, and sometimes you just need to wait to make your move.
While you are the one controlling your business it isn’t you out there on the game board.
5. Experience the journey, don’t just tick the box
I’ll be the first to admit that ticking off those daily to-do lists can give you a great sense of accomplishment.
But it’s important not to let your days be consumed with checking off to-dos, or your months and years checking off goals.
While it is good to keep moving forward, also remember to enjoy the moment. Celebrate the achievements, learn from the mistakes and savor the ups and downs.
Entrepreneurship can be a wild ride so make sure you get to enjoy it.
Amanda Jesnoewski is the owner of Velocity Media + Communications and a copywriter, marketing strategist and publicist.