Challenges & Changes
It’s 5:15 in the morning and the alarm goes off. Whether it’s summer and the birds are chirping or it’s winter and there’s a blizzard, it never gets easier to go spinning so early.
The bed is warm and cozy. Nobody is going to know if I hit snooze. I won’t be late for work and I have nobody to account to on this. Except me.
Given that, do you want to know how I motivate myself to do this three times a week? Here’s the deal. The alarm goes off and I get up immediately. No thinking … except for this one secret thing.
I say to myself, “I’ll go but if I’m not that into it, I won’t push myself. I’ll just keep the bike tension really low so I don’t have to exert myself. At least I will have gone.”
Guess what happens? I get to the gym and now I’m awake. Since I’m there already, I decide that I’ll make the most out of my workout as possible. And I do.
This little game I play with myself works every time. And it got me to wondering and observing what happens with others who are faced with challenges. What prevents them from getting up and coming to the gym with me?
Furthermore, how does this apply to business? What prevents people from moving forward when faced with an obstacle or a challenge?
I’ve observed that the stalemate happens for two overall reasons. But before we get to them, why should you even care about this?
If it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you.
Making the assumption that all of us are in business to successful. The only way to start and continue on that path is to jump over hurdles. These hurdles or challenges come in all forms and many are unexpected. So being stopped in your tracks makes perfect sense. However, remaining stuck does not.
Let’s look at these barriers and what you can do about them.
The two barriers fall into the categories of knowledge and fear.
When presented with a problem or even an opportunity, many people will respond by saying they don’t know how to (fill in the blank).
I’m sure you’ve heard people say things like,
“I don’t have money to invest and don’t want to take out a loan to start my business.” or
“I don’t know how to build a website and I’m not technically savvy.”
What happens? The business doesn’t get started and the website doesn’t get built.
When they stop there, they end up doing a lot of talking and never any doing. So a dream remains just that. A dream. Or even worse, a business declines and eventually has to close because obstacles weren’t overcome to get better or to change a situation.
The good news is that lack of knowledge is easy to overcome and totally within your control. Let me repeat that. Totally within your control.
Today there are an unlimited number of resources right at our finger tips that don’t even require us to leave our houses. There’s google search, online articles and niche websites covering almost any topic imaginable. There are YouTube videos, online training courses, books, podcasts and more.
So saying you don’t have knowledge or expertise in a particular area is a copout.
Having said that, the answer is not always having to figure it out and do it yourself either. In fact, many times the best option is not doing it yourself.
You can attend a convention and learn from people who have already achieved what you are trying to do. You can partner and get guidance from someone who is just a little bit further along than you are. Relationships like this can be formed at conferences, networking meetings and by searching out people in your community.
The point is, being resourceful to find the answers either for yourself or identifying someone who can do a job for you, will get you past this obstacle.
This is a little harder because it’s psychological. It’s in your head.
The truth is, you can never overcome this one. You will never be 100% free of fear and second-guessing.
You have to get comfortable with being uncomfortable. With stepping outside your comfort zone and with entering unknown territory.
It helps to acknowledge that everyone … even the most successful among us … is scared at times. Human nature has provided us with enough self-doubt to last a lifetime.
We ask ourselves if we really know what we’re talking about. If we will be found out because maybe we’re really a fraud.
Have you have ever been told that your input really helped someone out? Or that your product is beautiful? Or that a customer drove miles only to come to your shop because they love it so much? Even if it’s happened just once, you are not a fraud.
Since we’ve already established that this will never go away, you need to continually remind yourself that you are putting good out into the world and it’s worth talking back to your pesty little fear companion who pops up all the time.
Here’s another secret
If you are able to get beyond these challenges, you are on the winning path. Most people drop out at this point.
Building a business seems so glamorous at first but when it comes time to really dig in, people quit because they don’t know how to face the challenges. 8 out of 10 within an 18-month period because people succumb to lack of knowledge and fear.
When you push through, you’ve left the majority of the pack behind. This leaves the course open for you to grow and flourish.
Just like my spin class that is jam packed in January with all the optimistic New Year resolution makers. It’s much calmer in April when those of us left are the ones who push through and get out of that cozy place to do the work.
That’s how you get results. That’s how you build a successful business.
For more free business support consider listening to my podcast Gift Biz Unwrapped where I interview gifters-bakers-crafters-makers who share how they started and built their businesses. Want to talk with me directly? I’m only an email away. I’d love to hear about you, your business and what you’re working on right now. email@example.com
Great post Sue! My blog this week was a similar topic… we all need the tips from each other to keep ourselves moving forward!