Fail Into Your Dreams

There’s no learning without trying lots of ideas and failing lots of times – Jonathan Ive

I know how it goes – you have THE idea. The brilliant, incredible, never-thought-of-before, life-changing idea. IDEA, even. You are certain this is the thing that will put you on the map – the only thing left is getting started. After all, with an idea this good , you cannot fail. Easy enough, right?

There is nothing that excites me more than people that have goals, plans, and aspirations. It’s my life’s purpose to help and motivate these people as much as possible. Sometimes they just need a little help getting started. So I pour out my heart and bestow the small business wisdom from what I’ve learned during my 12 years of building Social Smoke into the top 4% of all small business in America – I answer multiple questions, I give advice, I chart next steps. Excited about being able to participate and possibly witness the birth of the next Mark Cuban or Zuck, I check in with my passionate pupil a few weeks later only to discover that the aspiring entrepreneur is more interested in remaining just that – aspiring, and I was merely an audience for their daydreaming. Disappointed yet again.

Unfortunately, I see this way too often.. It’s not about the idea, and it’s not the lack of knowledge that holds them back, nor is it insufficient resources. It’s the missing grit and lack of confidence that keep them from crossing the  bridge over the giant abyss called “fear of failure.” These are especially dangerous when combined with indecisiveness or simple laziness as they have the potential to hold back even the most brilliant of minds. Remember this – there is no sure thing but death and taxes, and both are already monopolized. So go out and create the world you know. Who gives a shit if you fail? You’re definitely not going to get very far without failing a whole lot of times. Build legs for that incredible idea you have. Get input for people that have traveled this road before. Test and try and fail, but keep going. And yes, it is terrifying – but take that first step. And for the love of all things holy, don’t be so damn hard-headed like me! Ask a questions and learn from those around you before you throw a bunch of money down the drain and learn these lessons the hard way.

So where to start?

  1. Unless you’ve developed the cure for cancer, don’t be scared to share your idea and get feedback. But don’t just seek a virtual pat on the back. Be prepared to hear some hard truths – take the advice to heart and incorporate the suggested changes.
  2. Work on yourself before you start hammering out business ideas.  You can’t build a business if you’re a cluster. You know if this applies to you. Develop a winning mindset and get organized because the stresses of business will show your weak spots really quickly. There is a ton of self-help literature that could help you become your best version. Hit me up for suggestions if you don’t know where to start.
  3. FOCUS. I cannot stress this enough. I’ve seen the magical power of focus first-hand. Read this book.
  4. Still terrified of making the first step? Look around you – know at least one business owner? Great. Shoulder-surf/shadow/intern – but learn and help them however you can. Mutually beneficial relationships lead to the added bonus of invaluable connection.

Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway. – Earl Nightingale

Now go get’em.

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