By Nathan Strum
As April is quickly approaching, that means we are already four months into the New Year. Most set out to accomplish a variety of different dreams, goals and aspirations on January 1st, so I challenge you to ask yourself how successful and consistent you have been in accomplishing those desires. One thing that I’ve learned is that you can’t make a significant change without having a significant mind shift first. Having long-lasting success begins when you start changing your thinking patterns and then adopting positive habits that align with the results you would like in the long-run. If you want to make a true shift from being an employee to being self-employed, your business requires you to put on your entrepreneurial cap through different situations, so what does that mental shift look like?
- Stop following instructions, start making decisions
When you switch your mindset from employee to entrepreneur, you quickly learn that you have to be comfortable being uncomfortable. Risks come along with your new role. You make the decisions. You have to test new waters. You have to rely on yourself to make these decisions, and it takes great character to be able to get knocked down, accept rejections and get back up when things don’t go as you’d hoped. People are now relying on you, and being an entrepreneur doesn’t necessarily come with a handbook or set of instructions as an employee might have.
- Be your own best cheerleader
Doubt is inevitable, but it is also detrimental. It is your job to crush doubt as much as possible. When you’re an entrepreneur, you are your own boss. Your business relies on you and your leadership abilities, so it is extremely important to lead from the front and believe in yourself no matter what. The truth is, you have to believe in yourself when no one else will. You have to believe in yourself when things aren’t going right because success is not one straight road or overnight. You will fail repeatedly and having a positive mindset that is focused on delayed gratification is crucial.
- It’s not a 9-5
One of the biggest realizations of being self-employed is that employees clock in and out, but you clock in and don’t always clock out. Your business will be on your mind for the most part of your day. You are responsible for putting in the long hours, weekends, holidays and birthdays. Bill Gates is a great example of this. He worked every single day in his 20’s to make Microsoft the enormous successful empire it is today. Successful entrepreneurs have a clear understanding that what they do today will compound into the future. So if you choose to go to a bbq, birthday party, etc. ask yourself how that action benefits your dream. Get rid of distraction, learn to plan, prioritize and keep to your calendar, that way you can maximize your time.
- Humble yourself and ask for help
Instead of beating yourself up over your failures, recognize that each failure is a step in the right direction to finding out how to succeed in that area. Doing something wrong or receiving criticism are both things that employees hate, but as an entrepreneur welcome them. After all, you can’t fire yourself. Seek for feedback from others who have been successful in your field. Find a mentor. There’s always someone out there that knows more than you, someone who has what you want and can be that objective voice of reason for you. Choose wisely who you listen to and then correct what needs to be corrected as soon as possible.
These are just a couple of mindset shifts that can drastically impact the way you grow as an entrepreneur and hop from being an employee to being your own boss.