What makes an entrepreneur different from the normal 9 to 5 worker? The answers to this question are as vast as the Atlantic is wide. The entrepreneurial spirit is steeped within those qualities which scream adventure, perseverance, dedication, boldness, and most importantly…vision. Many of us when preparing for the journey of launching our vision…become so entwined within the “excitement”, we overlook the packing of our emergency kits.
Often in life when we are attempting to accomplish something of importance, overcome something stressful, or are just simply trying to keep our head above water...we experience the call to abandon ship, jump overboard, or to simply quit! To feel overwhelmed in attempting to master the truly complicated in life is a completely normal experience, and we must be prepared to answer that call to abandon ship with a resounding NO! So exactly how do we know when the time is right to stay or to go…if we should begin plugging the holes or perhaps seek a new ship entirely?
In any business there are unavoidable situations which require that we abandon ship, but not for the purpose of our drowning in the dark, murky waters below; but so that we may move to a different vessel in which to continue our journey. I sometimes find myself becoming impatient with life, wanting all the things I am working towards to manifest right now, today.
When feeling as if the scenery of life is moving too slowly, or experiencing fear that the course you are on has somehow been altered...what should you do? Does one panic? Does one prepare to abandon ship? The answer to that depends..., it depends on what the conditions of the situation warrant. Many times it boils down to simply battening down the hatches, securing the line, riding the storm out, and then there are those times that we must do whatever is required to insure we remain afloat.
If your ship is truly prepared for the journey of a lifetime, then you must never forget that it was prepped from the very beginning with all you would need in the case of choppy waters, seemingly insurmountable waves, or even should you run aground. We forget some times that even in the darkest of nights, when the darkness is so thick that we cannot see our own hand directly in front of us, there is a compass placed deep within our spirits.
Faith is that compass, it is the device in which we can always place our complete trust...no matter what. Faith is that thing that leads us directly to the perfect size lifeboat, if and when we should ever need to change traveling vessels. Faith is the rope that we can hold on to in order to avoid being swept overboard during the storm. Faith..., it is the brightly shining light, that one glimmer we can faintly make out somewhere in the distance in the bleakest of nights. Faith...it is the boarding pass we were each presented with when we initially began our voyage, and it will serve as the baggage claim ticket once we have reached our destination.
It is imperative to remember in smooth waters and treacherous storms both, to focus on not the destination or goal, but on the process…the journey. The consistent ability to focus on the process is what separates not only the entrepreneur from the ordinary worker, but what determines ultimately how successful or not the entrepreneur will be. The process or journey, is the driving force in reaching any goal, it is the one thing we actually have control over. Many startup businesses find themselves going out of business not because their product or service is not viable, but simply due to the fact that they did not focus on the process of being successful as much as they focused on the goal of being successful.
Much of the intrigue associated with being an entrepreneur is the freedom to chart one’s own course, choose which adventure you will seek today, tomorrow, next week, or next year. The joys and benefits of being the master of one’s own destiny far outweigh the sleepless nights, the constant number crunching, and all those entrepreneurial curses we all face at some point or another.
Remember, as you steer your way towards the shores of your dreams...hold on, hold on, and hold on some more! If by chance you should ever find yourself being thrown towards the railing of the ship, never fear, simply hold on to your faith, believe and allow your inner compass to stay the course. You are the captain of your ship, the navigator of your dreams, you are… an entrepreneur!
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Written by Loren Michaels Harris
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