4 Principles Every Entrepreneur Needs to Overcome Failure

Facing the not-so-pleasant moments of entrepreneurship.

Don’t let the entrepreneurial wave fool you; tears are a part of the journey.

Social media will have you thinking that you find your passion, figure out how to make it profitable, leave your job and live in an abyss of freedom. That may be part of it, but it’s not the whole story. At every stage, you are being stretched by internal battles that question your ability, worth, vision, and sustainability.

Some days, you will feel like a failure, and that’s completely normal. 

Feeling like a failure is just that, a feeling.  It’s not your truth.

The truth is you’re growing. You are uncomfortable, uncertain, and operating in unchartered territory. Even with all of your planning and preparation, you still find yourself wondering if you made the right decision and what you could have done differently. Let these feelings motivate you. You are on the right path, and when you are done wiping your tears, you’ll see clearly enough to apply some of the following principles.

Principle #1: I am in control of my mind. 

One unique element to entrepreneurship is the mental restructuring of power. On the outside, prosperous entrepreneurs seem to exude confidence and positivity, but the reality is that these characteristics are rooted in a principled mindset.  Entrepreneurs understand their power. Their mindset is focused solely on what they can control which inherently concentrates attention on the power they have. Success then, is not a haphazard string of luck, but rather the result of focused thinking, disciplined development and consistent action. 

In order to get from where you are to where you want to go, you must also adopt a series of foundational principles that guide your thinking. Here are a few to consider:

  • There is no such thing as failure, only lesson learning. 

If something isn’t working. There is a lesson to be learned or an adjustment to be made. Seek advice, conduct research, reevaluate your approach, and know that this is building you for what’s next. 

  • The journey to success is a marathon without judgment. 

All marathons are run one step at a time. While you will have days where you feel like you aren’t doing enough or there’s so much more to be done, focus on the work you did that day. Some days work will include reading, reflecting, or getting help. One step at a time means doing small tasks daily.   

  • Variables are the only guarantee. 

Life will constantly send situations over which you have no control. Knowing this, establish systems for yourself and your business to keep you grounded in the face of unknowns.  

Principle #2: Success requires systems. 

At the core of every successful business are systems. Systems create consistency and save time by streamlining tasks. As an entrepreneur, you will first need to establish systems for yourself to increase productivity and decrease distractions. This could include a morning routine, a daily schedule, or specified work hours. In the same vein, your business needs systems around marketing, intake, execution, and follow-up.  If you notice a similar problem arising, take a step back to ask yourself what can be done to circumvent this issue in the future. 

If you feel like a failure, you most likely have a system that needs to be reworked. 

Principle #3:  I will tackle what scares me. 

There are parts of business that stretch us at every level. Fearful actions include trying to secure a notable client, releasing a personal article, or negotiating for what you deserve. The actions that scare you are the ones you need to take. Set up the meeting, and don’t worry about the possibilities of what can go wrong. The more you begin to tackle your fears, the less control they have over you. Each week do something that scares you. 

Principle #4: It’s okay to ask for help. 

While every entrepreneurial journey is different, many of the feelings and processes are the same. This means, with all the articles, podcasts, social media influencers, and entrepreneurial workspaces present today, you’re really not alone. Find an outlet to seek advice, vent, or access more knowledge. You will need more than one outlet and approach, so don’t settle for just one. Needing help is normal; suffering in silence, on the other hand, is unhealthy for both you and your business. 

If you are feeling overwhelmed, you are most likely drowning in fearful thoughts. A situation has you focusing on the worst-case scenarios or the problems ahead. Go through your process knowing that you will come out on the other side of these thoughts. Every obstacle is an opportunity to learn and grow. Attack your mindset, strengthen your routine, develop a fearless habit, and always be open to help.  

Written by Mizz Jasz

Jasmine “Mizz Jasz” Hawkins is a Philly-based educator, writer, and community organizer. Jasz serves as president and founder of the non-profit Urgent 365 Inc., author of Urgent Conversations: Race, Reality, and Responsiblity, and host of the Pecola Breedlove and the Freedom Party open mic. Her work and heart are grounded in the empowerment of women and the social climate of the Black community as a whole. When she isn’t working, Jasz loves watching romantic comedies, traveling, and working out.