Advice is a Poor Substitute for Insight

So you want to start a business, but you don’t know which of your many brilliant ideas to commit to. You ask friends, family, successful entrepreneurs, gurus, coaches, and really anyone who will listen (aka: random cashiers who seem genuinely sincere when they ask how your day is going). You run through all your different ideas, weighing the pros and cons of each, hoping that someone will reveal some angle that will tip the scale unquestioningly in favor of one idea over all the rest.

To even be contemplating starting a business indicates that you have experienced some degree of mastery with the jobs, projects, and assignments that others have entrusted you with. You have also felt stifled by the lack of opportunity to take that experience to the next level or express your own vision within that environment.

Starting a business is your opportunity to take full responsibility for the direction of your life. Only you know which idea you are willing to fully commit to. Relying on other people’s advice is an ill-advised shortcut: then you have them to blame when it fails. Then you are right back where you are right now, faced with the decision of committing your own vision or committing to someone else’s. As long as you are looking to others to choose your path for you, your experience of success as an entrepreneur will be limited.

The hard news is that your first attempt will most likely fail to some degree, but you will learn a tremendous amount in the process that you can successfully leverage on your next attempt. Ask yourself, “what idea am I ready to commit to and see fail?”

Know this:

  • Ideas are not the determinant of success: commitment and persistence are.
  • An entrepreneur who waits for the right idea at the right time for the least money dies without ever starting a business.
  • Ideas are worthless unless you can execute them. Pick one idea that feels achievable, and learn the art of execution.
  • Ideas are harder to execute on than you can even know at this point. Commit to one idea, and learn that lesson.
  • If it were easy and cheap, everyone would be running their own business. You have to be willing to do what 96% of other people wouldn’t do.
  • Clarity and confidence are a result of action, not a prerequisite.
  • True success is an inner phenomenon, not a worldly statistic.
  • If you are unwilling to invest in yourself (even if that means going further into debt), then you are adding significant time to your journey and missing out on unknown opportunities.
  • Money is not an obstacle, it’s an excuse. Time is truly your most precious resource. Get started!

More than anything, stop asking “what should I do?” and ask instead “how do I want to be?”, then do that from the time you get up to the time you go to bed. Your need for a the “right answer” is blocking the original insight you need most. Relax, and trust. Realize you are complete even if you can’t completely see all of yourself. When you do that, you will discover the diamond in your pocket. From that space, you cannot fail.

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