I had an idea, a great idea. I stayed awake at night tweaking it in my mind. I spent my free time at work daydreaming about other uses and markets. I had a perfect name, memorable and fun to say. I could see people using it. I was ready, but now what? I pored over blog posts and articles, videos and podcasts, and these left me very informed about the mechanics of starting up. This was information that I needed. But there was so much to do, so far to go, what if this didn’t work? I had a good job that was supporting my family, and although they were on board, what if I let them down?
This is our fear — all of us. Anyone can find the tools to start a company and possibly change the world, but where do we find the drive necessary to sustain us through all the hurdles of a startup? For a number of years now, I have been asked the same question by professionals wanting to break out of their jobs and launch a successful business of their own: How did you do it? While mentoring them, what was important, and what I kept coming back to in the end, was something that I had faced myself when I took my first steps towards becoming an entrepreneur. I have found that there are three crucial qualities that entrepreneurs must cultivate within themselves.
1. Believe in Yourself
If only it were that easy! But this is the essence of your flame. You must believe in yourself. Step back and take a penetrating look at the idea you’ve chalked out for yourself. Is your idea different? More importantly, is it better in some crucial way? The startup tools available to us all — can you execute them? If you hit any walls in your knowledge or ability, can you bring someone in who can become part of your team and fill in the gaps? If you believe in your idea and yourself, then this is the most important factor that will give you the confidence for launching into your own. If there is even a spec of doubt, start all over again.
2. Visualize Success
We unconsciously attract similar people. Find a successful business owner, and look at the people he is surrounded by. They are happy to be working with him. They work hard because they too want to succeed, and are willing to earn it. Find an unsuccessful business owner, and look at whom he is surrounded by — but not for too long! His fellows do not challenge themselves; don’t expect much from themselves or others.
You must orient yourself in the direction you want to go, and in business, there are only two directions — up or down, success or failure. When you start visualizing yourself succeeding, you will begin projecting yourself as a success. This will attract like-minded people, and will reinforce your chosen direction. The trick with the Law of Attraction is to take control of it, to make it a conscious act. Use it as the powerful tool that it is to push your idea to its limits, to visualize what you want achieved and change your life.
3. Focus on the Path.
If only we had known where our paths would take eventually take us! This is almost universal amongst entrepreneurs. Do you suppose Mark Zuckerberg had any clue what he was creating that night in his dorm room? Do you think he had any idea how Facebook would revolutionize the way humans communicate? No, he simply wanted to develop a way for people to connect with each other. Or take Larry Page and Sergey Brin. How could anyone foresee the business empire that Google would become? All they wanted to do was to build a better search engine, and ended up changing the entire game. The thing that they did right was to follow the path that they believed in.
Our companies are manifestations of our best — our best dreams and our talent. No one but you could run your company. Could anyone else have run Apple but Steve Jobs? Understanding these qualities will help awaken the voice within yourself to help you take a decision. And when you do finally decide to tread the path of an entrepreneur, remember Steve Jobs’ famous words, “Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish.”
Also published at http://rahulvarshneya.com.