Life is scary. Especially business life. You’re going to run into some scary situations. But this doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Let me tell you a story…
A year ago – I dropped every dime in my bank account into a business. Every cent I had. When the opportunity was presented to me – I was very very aware of the way things could go. I could lose everything. So I took about a day to think about it. I made the decision quickly and took action. I was now broke. Dirt broke. Guess who didn’t pay most of their bills that month?
That was honestly one of the best times of my life. And I had no idea how great that choice would be later. I’m very glad I made that choice. Then, a year later – a few weeks ago actually I decided to partner up with a marketing and web design company in Kansas. I got to know the founder and the president fairly well before I proposed partnership. But we signed off on an agreement and I am now co owner of this company. It is now mine. That scared the hell out of me. I was sweating through all of our meetings about it and in some cases I could even feel bile rising in my throat.
I was thinking to myself “What am I going to do now?” “What if I blow this?” and about every other question you could ask. My mind was flying at about 1000mph. It was way over riding my body that is for sure. During one of our meetings – the founder looked at me and asked “what’s wrong?” That means he was picking up on my fear. That is not always the best thing during business deals.
Of course I lied and said I was okay… But still, he knew. I have a good poker face so that really says something. You’re going to have to face things that will make you wonder how you even get dressed by yourself. And you will make mistakes. You will – but that is a good thing. You’ve gotta take these challenges and take action.
If you aren’t exhausted, stressed, and annoyed at some point then you’re not doing it right. But here are some tips I can give you on how to deal with these things better. This is from my personal experience.
Know Where You Stand.
When getting involved in something new – make sure it fits you and who you are. I’ve never done business that I didn’t believe in and like. And if you start dropping your standards then you’re already screwed. Make sure it is a good thing for you as far as your morals and beliefs go. That will make it a lot easier to sleep at night in that regard.
Even if a bad business deal opens up seemingly good opportunities – don’t take it. It is not all it’s cracked up to be. And on the professional side of things – make sure you aren’t being used. The reason I say this is because I have had this happened. I have been offered “opportunities” that sounded really good. But in reality the only person getting any value was the one who presented the idea. Make sure that everyone is going to benefit from the deal.
Prepare for Everything
In situations like this – I find that over preparing is helpful. When I became co owner of a fairly new marketing company – I decided I would over do the legal documents. I sent them several pages of things I had written up. Think of every single thing that could go wrong and put it on paper. Get it in writing. Make sure that each persons responsibilities are laid out clearly. Write out what each person expects from each other.
Also, mentally prepare yourself for the work you are about to take on. Then put it in a positive light. Don’t get overwhelmed by negative thoughts. Or ANTS (Automatic Negative Thoughts). Don’t sugar coat a situation – but make sure you aren’t overthinking on the negative side of things. For example, I might be working longer days and we might run into issues. But the big picture is what I look at.
You Will Learn
You are going to learn as you go. There’s no doubt about that. Even if you are not exactly ready right now – you will be. I didn’t know ANYTHING about business coaching or marketing. But as I went along I learned. I picked it up as I fumbled around. In some situations this wouldn’t be a good idea but for a lot of entrepreneurs this is how it’s done. You might not be perfect but you’ll get better over time.
Watch The Experts
Most of what I know has been learned directly from professionals. I made a point to soak up their knowledge like a sponge. I would attend every training I could. I asked a lot of them about a million questions a week. Some appreciated it and some were super annoyed with me. That’s alright – it happens.
If I could help it I never passed up an opportunity to learn. Then I would just apply what I had learned. So, go find the pros in your industry and learn all you can. And if they allow it – ask questions. I’ve asked some questions that made me look like a moron – it doesn’t matter. Do it anyway. Lean, always be learning.
A lot of people will not cross their comfort zone. But a lot of great things are outside of that box. Always proceed with caution and opens eyes and ears. But remember that a lot of things in your business is going to be unsettling. You think I would be comfortable without my business now? No, I wouldn’t. I would have no clue who I would be without it. But a year ago – I didn’t know I would be where I am today.
No one can see your future but you. Make a direction and go for it. This means taking the good and the bad. It’s all part of it. I have been too scared to move. So someone else carried me. But I went whether I was numb or not. And I will admit there are situations I am still not ready for. There are things I need to get over.
If it doesn’t put some fire in your soul and fear in your heart then it might not be big enough. That doesn’t mean all your choices are going to be scary – but the big things will be. If you are scared it means you care. That is a good thing. The moment you stop feeling fear is the day you have stopped caring.