Being an entrepreneur is far from easy. Sleepless nights, constant stress and wearing multiple hats, all are the norm. From the outside looking in, it might appear that it’s all rainbows and sunshine, but ask even the most successful entrepreneurs if it was easy — they will undoubtedly shake their head and smile.
So, how do you remain somewhat sane throughout the entrepreneurial journey? The answer is simple: be happy. When you love what you do, happiness isn’t far behind. There are, however, some things that will hold you back. So, stop doing these eight things and you will be a happy entrepreneur.
1. Seeking the approval of others.
It’s important that you learn how to trust your gut and make decisions that impact your business on your own. It doesn’t matter how amazing and achievable your ideas might be, there will always be those that oppose them if you ask for approval.
We naturally want to make everyone happy, especially when it comes to friends and family — but unless they are in the trenches with you and share the same vision, their input can only stress you out, leading you to making poor business decisions.
Related: The Scientific Reason You Should Trust Your Gut
2. Pointing the blame at others.
When it hits the fan — and eventually it will — it’s very easy to blame someone or something else. As an entrepreneur, you are ultimately responsible for everything that happens within your business. Even if an employee royally screws up, you are responsible. You made that hiring decision, so now you must patch the holes and fix the ship before it sinks.
A fellow entrepreneur and CEO of Aucto, Jamil Rahman, once said to me, “The sooner you own up to your mistake, the sooner you can take action to correct it.” This single piece of advice can eliminate a lot of unnecessary headaches and stress.
3. Not believing in yourself.
What is one trait that all successful entrepreneurs have in common? They all believe in themselves — they have 100 percent confidence that they can win — at anything and everything.
If you doubt your abilities, those negative thoughts will dominate and defeat you. Confidence and positive thinking is a very powerful combination that can help you reach every goal you set. “Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve,” concluded Napoleon Hill, author of Think and Grow Rich.
Complaining will never get you anywhere. It’s literally a huge waste of time, and the longer you complain about something, the longer it will take you to find a solution to fix the issue. If you want a stress free career, entrepreneurship is not for you.
There are going to be many obstacles in your way that will stress you out and you will most likely get knocked down a few times — failure is very possible. Complaining is a productivity-suck that will royally interfere with your goals and focus. Be tough and be ready for challenges.
Related: Why Entrepreneurs Who Complain Are Setting Themselves Up to Fail
5. Being scared of change.
Change is a common occurrence as an entrepreneur. A change in company direction after a pivot, a change in location or even a change in industry. When you push that fear aside and embrace change, it opens the door to happiness.
I’ll give you a prime example: I was involved in several industries before I started my online marketing consulting business. I wasn’t happy, so I did some thinking. What I came to realize was that the only part of my ventures that I truly loved was the marketing aspect, so I decided to drop everything and start Market Domination Media®. Was it scary at first? You bet, but it ended up being a great move — and it wouldn’t have happened had I been scared of change.
6. Expecting to win 100 Percent of the time.
Does David Ortiz go up to bat expecting to hit a home run every time? Does Tom Brady expect to throw a touch-down pass every offensive play? No. While they are confident in their abilities, they understand that they aren’t going to hit home runs and throw TD’s every time out there.
Entrepreneurs need to go into each situation knowing that you can’t win every time. While confidence is important, it needs a small amount of reality mixed in. If you expect to win every time, that first loss will be devastating and a motivation killer.
7. Giving up.
One of my favorite entrepreneurial stats is about James Dyson, creator of Dyson vacuum cleaners. If he gave up, the world’s most successful vacuum would have never been invented. He created 5,127 prototypes of the vacuum, all failures, before the first successful model was produced. It was 15 years of never giving up that now has Dyson worth approximately $5 billion.
While most people in his shoes would have quit after a few failures — maybe even a dozen — he was so relentless, that he pushed hard for fifteen years and more than five thousand failed prototypes. “Giving up” was certainly not in his vocabulary.
8. Trying to impress.
I’m going to keep this one short and sweet: don’t fall for the social media bling factor. So many people try to impress — pictures of cars, watches, homes, vacations, etc. Sadly, the majority of it is all fabricated and used to lure people in.
Instead of worrying about impressing people, focus your energy on these three things: your business, health, and family. That is the true formula for happiness.
Related: 7 Ways to Refocus on What's Truly Important
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