Do people think you’re crazy? Good.
A girl in a bar asked me once, “So, you’re an entrepreneur, huh? What does that mean?”
I told her that I’m unemployed, soon to be homeless, and her future ex-boyfriend. I also told her that I could meet with her for 3 hours next weekend – the best 3 hours of her life.
She laughed, but I wasn’t kidding; at least not entirely.
Some people just can’t comprehend how we function. How we gamble the ‘now’ for the future. It’s just how it is, how we are. We’re crazy for a reason. We’re passionate about bringing change.
Steve Blank says about entrepreneurs in his Startup Operation Manual:
“They’re a very tiny percentage of the world population, and their brains are wired for chaos, uncertainty, and blinding speed. Their job is their life. It is not 9-to-5, it’s 24/7.”
We don’t know what “jobs” are, and our vacations are “workations.”
But what is the entrepreneurial mindset? Hold my hand as we dive into it!
1. Challenge Yourself Every day
I used to drink a lot of alcohol. After a regular night out with friends or even a networking event, I’d have a $ 30 dollar cab ride home a headache in the morning.
In fact, this month I made a personal commitment to lead a healthier lifestyle and cut down on my cocktails. Of course, you’ll still see me with a vodka martini at the next Startup Socials Mixer.
And that’s because I’m not quitting alcohol entirely outright, but challenging myself every day to do something small, something achievable, something that puts me out of my comfort zone.
2. Make Decisions and Stay Alive
How do you know you’re alive? My favorite definition of “living” is from Paul Dobransky’s book MindOS, in which he says the best evidence of living is decision-making.
It’s not just about breathing or following a daily routine. It’s about taking control of your life and experimenting with it like a scientist – with the same kind of dedication it takes to find a cure for Parkinson’s disease.
If you want to cultivate an entrepreneurial mindset, you have to make quick decisions, and you have to make them every day.
3. Think Big, Always Persevere, and Trust in Mentorship
About a month ago, I was in a very dark place. I felt completely burnt out and miserable.
We launched a new product that just couldn’t find a customer. None of the customer development we did mattered at all.
More importantly, I lost my passion for almost everything, the people around me, the things I loved. My personal life was a mess. I tried to power through by working harder and I even disconnected for a few days completely. Nothing seemed to help.
Then, one day, I was on a call with one of the Startup Marketing Conference speakers, who also happened to be my mentor.
“I know exactly how you feel,” he said. “This journey is a rollercoaster. You need to go through this pain and frustration. But on a positive note, every single time you go through it, you will become so much stronger.”
He was right. Like a true entrepreneurs he had a long-standing vision and faith in it. A faith that reflected in his products and services.
True entrepreneurs are dead serious about changing the world. They always keep their eyes on the prize and they’re willing to lose many battles along the way, learn and go for the prize again.
So, are you of them?
If you are, don’t wait.