Sometimes, things don’t work out as we planned. Sometimes, the money doesn’t arrive as we hoped. Sometimes, the candidate says no to the job offer. Sometimes, the product falls flat.
Every time it happens, it stings. Every time, it feels like you’ve reached the end. Every time, it makes you question whether you should be doing what you’re doing. Then, it happens…
…The sun comes up the next day.
I get asked for a lot of advice on dealing with business deals gone bad or businesses that are dying a slow death. I always respond with one question: Do you want to keep working on your business, or are you just done?
I don’t say it to pile on or be mean. I just need to know what the goal is. Sometimes, small business owners get tired and are ready to hang up the towel. If that’s where you’re at, the advice looks different: Hang it up.
Most of the time, that is not what people want. They just feel burned, and if I’m really honest, they feel like a failure. For most entrepreneurs, that’s a temporary feeling, although it never feels like it. The duration of that feeling is about memory.
Small business owners have to practice short-term memory.
If you wake up tomorrow thinking about the mistakes you made the previous week, your mind will be focused on the past and not on the opportunities coming at you right now. Sure, you need to think about what happened, how you can improve it and how your will turn things around, but once you have the plan, you need to let go of the failure and concentrate on executing the mid-course correction flawlessly.
There are no victims, just volunteers. So if you’re struggling in your business and feeling unsuccessful, take time to figure out what’s going wrong, then put it behind you. There’s no time for moping. Success requires action. Turn your feelings of disappointment around and use that energy to execute your recovery plan.
Is it hard?
Yes, but when it works and you have a few wins under your belt, you’ll be glad you let it go.