Her topic last week was on Fear. What is it, as business owners/entrepreneurs, are we fearful of? We were asked to each write out our fears on a piece of paper and toss it in a hat. Then each member would pull a slip and read the fear anonymously. For such an open topic it was surprising to find out that there were basically 3 fears we ALL shared.
Fear of Losing Good Employees
Fear of Not Being Able to Find Balance
Fear of FAILURE!!!
First and foremost it was reassuring to find out we weren’t alone in our neurotic hang ups. We all seem to worry endlessly about the same things and perhaps even let those worries hinder our success. As we read the fears out loud we were asked to address them as best we could. Our fears were out in the open, now it was time to put them in their place.
With employees if you’re clear about what you want and what you expect ahead of time, it makes it easier to find the right people and retain them. When you already have these great employees what drives them? Does your management or their job foster their personal ideas of success? If not, is there something that can be changed to encourage their growth? In the end people are people and we can’t please everyone all the time. Finding and retaining great staff is an endless struggle, one many of us are familiar with. The best you can do is never stop hunting for unicorns.
Do you close the tool box or do you take everything home with you at the end of the day? Learning to keep things separate and making sure you prioritize finding time when you do not mix business with your personal life is critical for finding balance. Find outlets so you can decompress. An activity that keeps you engaged and not obsessing over problems at work. Taking a break can sometimes be the best way of finding solutions to problems. We all like to think that the world will stop revolving if we’re not there but in fact, this is hardly ever true. Try to keep in mind why you work so hard in the first place, not the work itself. No one can do this but you and if you don’t value your time no one else will either.
Then there’s the big one – FAILURE. This is the one we fear most of all. No one wants to see their investment of time and energy go to waste. However the only true failure is never starting in the first place. Take some comfort in the fact that just by trying you’ve already accomplished more than most. Thomas Edison had nearly a 1000 unsuccessful attempts at building a working (commercial) light bulb. To most this would seem like a failure. When asked why he didn’t just call it quits, he’s quoted as saying, “Why? Now we know a 1000 ways not to make a lightbulb.” Everyone makes mistakes. As long as we can learn from them we can still find success.
So cheers to all you hardy and independent entrepreneurs out there. Keep Calm and Carry On!