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10 Reasons You Haven’t Started Your Business and Why They’re Just Excuses

10 Reasons You Haven’t Started Your Business and Why They’re Just Excuses

Everyone dreams of being the proud owner of a successful multimillion-dollar business someday. Why you haven’t started your business today is not because you do not have an idea worth selling. You probably haven’t started your business due to one of the reasons I will outline in this post.

When you’re through with this post and you still think your reason for not starting your business is justified, then you’re just not cut-out to be a business owner.

1. Lack of Funds

Most successful companies you know of today started with as little as just their laptop and a desire to change the world. Mark Zuckerberg wasn’t the richest kid in Harvard when he started The Facebook. But he knew he was up to something big and he didn’t allow financial obstacles to stop him.

Your own is not to worry about the money. Just focus on bringing that idea out there. All you need is a perfect combination of the right marketing skills and the drive to create something that the world needs. Soon investors will fall over themselves to become stakeholders in your business.

2. You Do Not Have a Co-founder

At start, people may not believe in your idea. Convincing someone to leave their comfortable and stable 9-5 job to join you on your risky adventure to success might seem too big a chance to take. But with the right offer, and a good reason to do so, you can get your dream co-founder to become your business partner. This goes back to honing your marketing skills.

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And if you’re unable to convince anyone to become your partner, just focus on bringing your idea out to the world. As you go on running your business, you might discover you do not actually need a co-founder in the first place.

3. The Market is Too Crowded

If you’re in a business that has no competition, it probably means you’re in a business that makes no profit. If AirBnB was afraid of entering into a competitive or already crowded market, it would not have been the multibillion dollar company it is today.

When your business idea serves an already crowded market, eliminate the common solution to the problem and create an alternative to that solution. That way, you carve your own niche. That was what AirBnB did with the hotel and travel industry and it became one of the biggest name in the industry today.

Lyft and Uber entered an extremely saturated market as well. They both changed the face of the industry by using the one method I mentioned above.

4. No one believes in your dream

You do not need everyone to believe in your dream. You only need yourself to do. And if you do, then pursue your dream with all your strength. Stop looking for validation from others. Stop caring whether they believe in you or not.

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If Steve Jobs was concerned with the number of naysayers he talked about being the number one computer manufacturer in the world to, the Apple we all know today wouldn’t have existed.

5. You Do Not Know What to Name Your Company

Your business name is how your customers will differentiate you from your competitors, but you should not burden yourself with that either. If you find it hard to come up with a brilliant name for your company, you can list for the help of others.

Margot Bushnaq, CEO of BrandBucket.com says: “Most entrepreneurs struggle to find the perfect name, and often feel it’s hard to start working on the business without naming it. Thinking “lean” can help you get over that hurdle. The faster you decide on a name, the sooner you can invest your time in what matter most, your business. But keep in mind that Lean Branding is not about shortcuts or settling, it’s about being smart, streamlined, and speedy. And most of all, it’s about starting. So limit your decision makers, pinpoint your overall brand feel and start brainstorming. Once you have found a few name you like, make the final decision and move on to other tasks”

6. You Want to Start Big

Wanting to start big is one other reason you haven’t started your business. When you’re waiting till you have one million dollars in cash before you start your business, you may wait forever. No big business started big. Start with what you have and take that very first step.

Don’t be afraid to start small. Starting small is a sign that you’re courageous and that is a vital entrepreneurial asset. By taking that very first step today, you are activating your subconscious to prepare for success.

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7. You’re Afraid Of Failing

The fear of failure is the biggest reason most people do not pursue their dreams. Such a mindset will keep you from trying new things.

The fear that you’re going to fail is only an excuse to keep yourself from becoming a successful entrepreneur. You need to learn to embrace failure if you’re going to ever start a successful company. Think of the big companies of today. Even as big and successful as they are, yet they fail at many things.

It’s only by failing that we learn to improve our ideas. So if you’re not starting your business because you’re afraid of failing, you might be missing on the very opportunity to improve yourself.

8. People Have Always Mocked Your Ideas

It’s good if people have mocked your ideas before. It helps you develop a thick skin needed to play the role of a successful entrepreneur. Forget about the do-no-goods that hide their weakness by playing on that of others.

When you have new ideas and your friends or colleagues are always mocking them without giving you any constructive feedback, you know it’s time to change your friends. Don’t hold back from launching that great idea into the world for others to benefit from it.

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9. You Don’t Know What to Charge

The area of putting a price on what you’ve invented is where most entrepreneurs are constantly ill-equipped. There are several philosophies on how to price your products and inventions, but I’d advice to let that be the least of your concerns.

Start it first. Put it in the market and you will have the opportunity to adjust your price to the weather of the market. But if you keep tinkering on how to price your idea, you might end up not bringing it into light.

10. You’re Not Fully Prepared to Start Your Business

You know what Mark Zuckerberg usually says about preparation? “It’s done is better than it’s perfect”. While you’re waiting for your idea to be perfect, several others have launched the same idea and have made a lot of reiterations to it.

Stop waiting to have the perfect ideas before you start. By the time you’re waiting to perfect it, others will have started and overtaken you significantly.

Conclusion

If it’s your dream to own a successful business one day, then today is the day you should start it. Don’t wait for the big money to come. Don’t wait till it’s perfect. Just start.

What other reason is keeping you from starting your business? Share it with us in the comments below and let someone help you out.

Featured photo credit: Steven Depolo/Child Entrepreneur Lemonade Stand 50 Cents Each Qiqi Lourdie via flickr.com

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Last Updated on March 21, 2019

11 Important Things to Remember When Changing Habits

11 Important Things to Remember When Changing Habits

Most gurus talk about habits in a way that doesn’t help you:

You need to push yourself more. You can’t be lazy. You need to wake up at 5 am. You need more motivation. You can never fail…blah blah “insert more gibberish here.”

But let me share with you the unconventional truths I found out:

To build and change habits, you don’t need motivation or wake up at 5 am. Heck, you can fail multiple times, be lazy, have no motivation and still pull it off with ease.

It’s quite simple and easy to do, especially with the following list I’m going to show to you. But remember, Jim Rohn used to say,

“What is simple and easy to do is also simple and easy not to do.”

The important things to remember when changing your habits are both simple and easy, just don’t think that they don’t make any difference because they do.

In fact, they are the only things that make a difference.

Let’s see what those small things are, shall we?

1. Start Small

The biggest mistake I see people doing with habits is by going big. You don’t go big…ever. You start small with your habits.

Want to grow a book reading habit? Don’t start reading a book a day. Start with 10 pages a day.

Want to become a writer? Don’t start writing 10,000 words a day. Start with 300 words.

Want to lose weight? Don’t stop eating ice cream. Eat one less ball of it.

Whatever it is, you need to start small. Starting big always leads to failure. It has to, because it’s not sustainable.

Start small. How small? The amount needs to be in your comfort zone. So if you think that reading 20 pages of a book is a bit too much, start with 10 or 5.

It needs to appear easy and be easy to do.

Do less today to do more in a year.

2. Stay Small

There is a notion of Kaizen which means continuous improvement. They use this notion in habits where they tell you to start with reading 1 page of a book a day and then gradually increase the amount you do over time.

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But the problem with this approach is the end line — where the “improvement” stops.

If I go from reading 1 page of a book a day and gradually reach 75 and 100, when do I stop? When I reach 1 book a day? That is just absurd.

When you start a habit, stay at it in the intensity you have decided. Don’t push yourself for more.

I started reading 20 pages of a book a day. It’s been more than 2 years now and I’ve read 101 books in that period. There is no way I will increase the number in the future.

Why?

Because reading 40 to 50 books a year is enough.

The same thing applies to every other habit out there.

Pick a (small) number and stay at it.

3. Bad Days Are 100 Percent Occurrence

No matter how great you are, you will have bad days where you won’t do your habit. Period.

There is no way of going around this. So it’s better to prepare yourself for when that happens instead of thinking that it won’t ever happen.

What I do when I miss a day of my habit(s) is that I try to bounce back the next day while trying to do habits for both of those days.

Example for that is if I read 20 pages of a book a day and I miss a day, the next day I will have to read 40 pages of a book. If I miss writing 500 words, the next day I need to write 1000.

This is a really important point we will discuss later on rewards and punishments.

This is how I prepare for the bad days when I skip my habit(s) and it’s a model you should take as well.

4. Those Who Track It, Hack It

When you track an activity, you can objectively tell what you did in the past days, weeks, months, and years. If you don’t track, you will for sure forget everything you did.

There are many different ways you can track your activities today, from Habitica to a simple Excel sheet that I use, to even a Whatsapp Tracker.

Peter Drucker said,

“What you track is what you do.”

So track it to do it — it really helps.

But tracking is accompanied by one more easy activity — measuring.

5. Measure Once, Do Twice

Peter Drucker also said,

“What you measure is what you improve.”

So alongside my tracker, I have numbers with which I measure doses of daily activities:

For reading, it’s 20 pages.
For writing, it’s 500 words.
For the gym, it’s 1 (I went) or 0 (didn’t go).
For budgeting, it’s writing down the incomes and expenses.

Tracking and measuring go hand in hand, they take less than 20 seconds a day but they create so much momentum that it’s unbelievable.

6. All Days Make a Difference

Will one day in the gym make you fit? It won’t.

Will two? They won’t.

Will three? They won’t.

Which means that a single gym session won’t make you fit. But after 100 gym sessions, you will look and feel fit.

What happened? Which one made you fit?

The answer to this (Sorites paradox)[1] is that no single gym session made you fit, they all did.

No single day makes a difference, but when combined, they all do. So trust the process and keep on going (small).

7. They Are Never Fully Automated

Gurus tell you that habits become automatic. And yes, some of them do, like showering a certain way of brushing your teeth.

But some habits don’t become automatic, they become a lifestyle.

What I mean by that is that you won’t automatically “wake up” in the gym and wonder how you got there.

It will just become a part of your lifestyle.

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The difference is that you do the first one automatically, without conscious thought, while the other is a part of how you live your life.

It’s not automatic, but it’s a decision you don’t ponder on or think about — you simply do it.

It will become easy at a certain point, but they will never become fully automated.

8. What Got You Here Won’t Get You There

Marshall Goldsmith has a great book with the same title to it. The phrase means that sometimes, you will need to ditch certain habits to make room for other ones which will bring you to the next step.

Don’t be afraid to evolve your habits when you sense that they don’t bring you where you want to go.

When I started reading, it was about reading business and tactic books. But two years into it, I switched to philosophy books which don’t teach me anything “applicable,” but instead teach me how to think.

The most important ability of the 21st century is the ability to learn, unlearn, and relearn. The strongest tree is the willow tree – not because it has the strongest root or biggest trunk, but because it is flexible enough to endure and sustain anything.

Be like a willow, adapting to the new ways of doing things.

9. Set a Goal and Then Forget It

The most successful of us know what they want to achieve, but they don’t focus on it.

Sounds paradoxical? You’re right, it does. But here is the logic behind it.

You need to have a goal of doing something – “I want to become a healthy individual” – and then, you need to reverse engineer how to get there with your habits- “I will go to the gym four times a week.”

But once you have your goal, you need to “forget” about it and only focus on the process. Because you are working on the process of becoming healthy and it’s always in the making. You will only be as healthy as you take care of your body.

So you have a goal which isn’t static but keeps on moving.

If you went to the gym 150 times year and you hit your goal, what would you do then? You would stop going to the gym.

This is why goal-oriented people experience yo-yo effect[2] and why process-oriented people don’t.

The difference between process-oriented and goal-oriented people is that the first focus on daily actions while others only focus on the reward at the finish line.

Set a goal but then forget about it and reap massive awards.

10. Punish Yourself

Last two sections are pure Pavlovian – you need to punish bad behavior and reward good behavior. You are the only person who decides what is good and what is bad for you, but when you do, you need to rigorously follow that.

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I’ve told you in point #3 about bad days and how after one occurs, I do double the work on the next day. That is one of my forms of punishments.

It’s the need to tell your brain that certain behaviors are unacceptable and that they lead to bad outcomes. That’s what punishments are for.

You want to tell your brain that there are real consequences to missing your daily habits.[3]

No favorite food to eat or favorite show to watch or going to the cinema for a new Marvel movie- none, zero, zilch.

The brain will remember these bad feelings and will try to avoid the behaviors that led to them as much as possible.

But don’t forget the other side of the same coin.

11. Reward Yourself

When you follow and execute on your plan, reward yourself. It’s how the brain knows that you did something good.

Whenever I finish one of my habits for the day, I open my tracker (who am I kidding, I always keep it open on my desktop) and fill it with a number. As soon as I finish reading 20 pages of a book a day (or a bit more), I open the tracker and write the number down.

The cell becomes green and gives me an instant boost of endorphin – a great success for the day. Then, it becomes all about not breaking the chain and having as many green fields as possible.

After 100 days, I crunch some numbers and see how I did.

If I have less than 10 cheat days, I reward myself with a great meal in a restaurant. You can create your own rewards and they can be daily, weekly, monthly or any arbitrary time table that you create.

Primoz Bozic, a productivity coach, has gold, silver, and bronze medals as his reward system.[4]

If you’re having problems creating a system which works for you, contact me via email and we can discuss specifics.

In the End, It Matters

What you do matters not only to you but to the people around you.

When you increase the quality of your life, you indirectly increase the quality of life of people around you. And sometimes, that is all the “motivation” we need to start.

And that’s the best quote for the end of this article:

“Motivation gets you started, but habits keep you going.”

Keep going.

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More Resources to Help You Build Habits

Featured photo credit: Anete Lūsiņa via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy: Sorites paradox
[2] Muscle Zone: What causes yo-yo effect and how to avoid it?
[3] Growth Habits: 5 Missteps That Cause You To Quit Building A Habit
[4] Primoz Bozic: The Lean Review: How to Plan Your 2019 in 20 Minutes

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