This month marks my 20-year anniversary as an entrepreneur.
As part of my new commitment to help more entrepreneurs and small business owners achieve higher levels of success, through my Legacy Changes Everything program, I will be sharing some of the big lessons and turning points I’ve experienced in my entrepreneurial journey.
This first post is the importance of betting on yourself to win big.
Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do something.
Scores of entrepreneurs have faced challenges and hardships, bankruptcy, and struggles on their journey to success.
The entrepreneurs that emerge wildly successful do a lot of things right – but there’s one thing for sure – they never give up.
Twenty years ago, when I was sitting on the surgeons table discussing my cancer surgery and I first heard that my chances of being alive in five years might be 50/50 – my immediate first thought was whether or not I’d see my girls graduate high school.
I got clarity real fast about how precious life is, and how short it might actually be.
As entrepreneurs, remember that every day you are blessed to wake up and think about doing something great.
Remind yourself that this is not a dress rehearsal.
We are all playing on the main stage right now, and there are no do-overs or second acts.
Wherever you are in your journey to success, I urge you to step up your game.
Stop the baby steps.
And stop making small safe bets, and instead, start running towards your goals.
What holds most people back is doubt, fear, and a boatload of excuse making.
Every entrepreneur before you, and most that will follow, will play the “What If” game, as they think about all that can go wrong.
If you let it, this sick and twisted mind trap will freeze you into inaction and doom you to a life of average.
Several years ago, I was heading for a long period of average and mediocre business results.
Thankfully, a highly successful entrepreneur literally embarrassed me into doing the hard things necessary to achieve the success I so desired.
This red-faced moment proved to be one of two huge turning points for me as an entrepreneur.
The second turning point was when another mentor to me said,
“Jim, you can’t save your way out of debt, you have to grow your way out of debt. And honestly, if you’re not willing to bet on yourself to win big, even if you have to borrow more to accelerate the growth of your business, then I suggest you get comfortable where you are, because growth will forever elude you. There are no big rewards for making small safe bets.”
Friends, a few years down the road, there will be a new crop of entrepreneurs who will want to read about and study some of the brave and successful entrepreneurs that blazed a trail before them.
The truth is, there’s not a damn reason in the world that your story can’t be one of the examples they will want to learn from and emulate.
At the very least, the story and example you set for your family will prove invaluable.
Why not make a decision today to finally push all the chips in to the middle of the table, and bet on yourself to win big – because damnit, you deserve it!