Having watched my father build his own empire and endure a mountain of stress, I was adamant that I would not follow in his footsteps. I was drawn to the security of a stable income and I was simply content with the idea of climbing a pre-existing ladder. Admittedly, it was the safe choice.
After all, the fear that looms amidst the infamous pool of doubt is notorious for ruining anyone’s startup appetite. It was only after a brief taste of the corporate world that I realised I was hungry for something more decadent, and though I couldn’t escape the inevitable fear of failure, I was gung-ho enough to embrace the impending obstacles. As you embark on your startup journey, sink your teeth into the infinite number of resources available to you and take heed of the advice bestowed by the greats. Perhaps, one day someone will be quoting your words of wisdom. Below is a snapshot of what inspired my progress and on several occasions, served as a life raft for The Banter Press.
If your dreams don’t scare you, they aren’t big enough
Fear is a natural component in the pursuit of success. Without the element of fear in the mix, the end result is nowhere near as satisfying. The prospect of fulfilling your dream should produce an inexplicable urge to perform a celebratory happy dance in the middle of the CBD or something equally as extravagant to mark the achievement of what was once an overly-ambitious goal, scrawled on a piece of paper. It’s easy to be swayed by the walls of comfort and abandon your dreams, but are you prepared to replay the gut-wrenching episodes of regret for the rest of your days? Fear is a punishing force, preying on your vulnerabilities. You can allow it to place a barricade between you and your dreams, or you can acknowledge its presence and embrace it. In order to push forward against this tidal wave of conflicting emotions, you need to keep your eye on the end prize, whatever that may be.
Don’t forget to celebrate your milestones
The hurdles you encounter along the way can fuel the fire of doubt and cripple your motivation to reach the top of the mountain. Celebrating milestones and acknowledging your progress is a fundamental part of the journey. The importance of celebrating your victories, no matter how small they may be, lies in its power to de-plague the mind of doubt and recharge your confidence. Pause and reflect on how far you’ve come, what you’ve learnt and how these lessons can assist you in the next leg of your journey.
Never underestimate the power of accountability in goal setting
The SMART system is a popular method for setting goals, however, this recipe for success is missing a core ingredient – accountability. It is one thing to craft a master plan, it’s another to follow through with it. Accountability manufactures external pressure which is often what you need to propel you forward. Announcing your goal to a group of friends is a public way of committing to your plan of action. The sheer power of social expectations might just be ample motivation to keep you on track for success. If you’re guilty of hitting the snooze button on your goals, allow the power of accountability to work its magic on you.
When your passion is strong enough, you will find a way to push past your startup fear and the string of excuses previously delaying your progress will disappear. For an extra nudge in the right direction, leverage the power of accountability and don’t forget to boost your startup confidence by celebrating your milestones along the way.