May marks Mental Health Month in several countries around the globe. As part of our continuing series on mental health, we’re going to look at a subject we all struggle with occasionally: Staying confident.
Life is filled with ups and downs. For a business owner, these highs and lows can feel magnified. Every little decision is scrutinized and over-thought. And, even if you’re doing everything correctly, things can still sometimes go awry. We’re all too prone to pointing the finger of blame inwards and holding ourselves to account for perceived mistakes or shortcomings. Hopefully, if you take one thing away from this week’s blog, it’s the realization it doesn’t need to be this way…
When a fledging business hits tough times, the single most effective weapon an entrepreneur can wield is their own self-belief. It will provide light in dark times and a beacon of positive mental health. For the vast majority of people this self-belief is something that must be nurtured. If you find yourself struggling with it, that’s totally fine! In fact, most of us do. The good news is self-belief is something you can work on, acquire, and make stronger. Here are some of our top tips to help you stay confident as an entrepreneur.
Don’t Go Alone
Becoming your own boss is one of the single biggest thrills of entrepreneurship. You can make your own hours and you call the shots. Unfortunately, it’s a double-edged sword. Who can you turn to when a problem is outside of your expertise? Mentorship can fill this gap. A mentor is ideally someone with relevant experience in the business world; a person who has been there and done that. This person is someone you can check in with and discuss problems. Knowing they are there is often enough of a security blanket for a lot of people. If you have a positive experience working with a mentor, make sure to pay it forward later in your career.
Fall Down? Get Back Up!
History is brimming with examples of failures who went on to great things. No matter how broad your skillset, or how switched on you are, you are guaranteed to face roadblocks on the way to success. How you face up to these problems, overcome them and continue on, will define your career. Don’t think of objectives in terms of success or failure. Think of them as winning, or learning.
Forget Your Comfort Zone
Most of us are confident operating within our comfort zone. After all, it’s often a cushy place! Those with endless reserves of self-confidence are equally comfortable operating outside of their comfort zone. As an entrepreneur, one of the realities you must face is that you’ll have to solve problems outside of your comfort zone. You’re going to feel uncomfortable, and that’s ok. In fact, the more of this discomfort you tackle head on, the less you will fear new challenges. Allow your anxiety and discomfort to become an ally.
Learn the Power of NO
A lot of us are pre-disposed to saying ‘yes’ even when we’re internally screaming no. This mindset leaves us open to spreading ourselves too thin and setting ourselves up to fail. Failures you suffer due to your eagerness to please can quickly erode your self-confidence. Respecting your own time, mental health and capacity for work goes hand-in-hand with learning to say ‘no’ when it’s appropriate.
Celebrate the Wins
Finally, it’s massively important to take the time to acknowledge your victories as an entrepreneur, no matter how trivial they may seem. Entrepreneurship doesn’t need to be a constant grind. Allowing yourself time to celebrate is a validation of your efforts and will create a positive feeling around your business. The more victories you savour, the more positive vibes you create!