Column: Your network can help when gray skies loom
Photo by Dimitri Castrique
We all have doubts.
Especially when adversity rears its ugly head,
I know we entrepreneurs have to be our own best cheerleaders. When the tough times come, we have to have the strength of our convictions to help us muscle through any obstacles. If we can't square our shoulders and bear the load, then we had better just give up having a business or aspiring to a new level in our career.
OK, it's not completely wrong. It is true, in general, that we have to have self-confidence in order to start and run a business, but, as with everyone, there are times when our plans take a left turn that we don't expect.
It's not usually the big crises. Those we seem to be able to rally against. For most of us, it's the little niggling issues that slowly erode our positive nature until suddenly we're doubting the value of what we've chosen to do.
And that's where a strong network can step in to help.
- They'll be the sounding board that helps us re-examine all of our assumptions.
- They'll advise us about similar situations they've faced.
- They'll put us in touch with others who might be able to help.
- They'll remind us of the challenges we've overcome in the past.
- They'll help us brainstorm new approaches to our problems.
- They may even point out when we are deluding ourselves — in a kind and supportive way.
In my time as an entrepreneur, I've experienced a lot of challenges and, just like everyone else, I've had one or two (or more) occasions of self-doubt. Every time it's happened, though, it seems like my closest connections are there to point out the rainbow hiding behind the clouds. In a very short while, I'm back on my feet and ready to get back into the fray.
All because I have people in my corner looking out for me.