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This “Railway Map” Will Tell You How To Think Like An Entrepreneur

This “Railway Map” Will Tell You How To Think Like An Entrepreneur

getting-on-the-entrepreneur-line-of-thinking-infographic

    Are you a current or aspiring entrepreneur?

    Well, if so, you may just need to unlearn what they taught you in school, especially business school.

    How ironic, yes I know.

    In case you hadn’t noticed, most schools prepare their students to become employees, not entrepreneurs.

    Yes, even the business schools with MBA programs.

    Students are taught to follow the rules, not make mistakes, and that working is a necessity.

    Simply.  Not.  True.

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    The Mind Subway Map is actually a great illustration of what it mentally takes to succeed as an entrepreneur and how they think differently than the rest.

    Below, I highlight a few examples from each of the four different “mentality routes.”  

    What to Unlearn From School.

    Follow the rules.

    If we all followed the rules we would cease creating anything new.

    Money is Evil.

    No. The lack of money is evil.

    Behave yourself.

    Entrepreneurs challenge the status quo and aren’t afraid to make mistakes.  This doesn’t align with the discipline they enforce in school.  

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    What to Never Think.

    I don’t know enough.

    The trick is surrounding yourself with people who know what you don’t.  Build a team of various experts.  You will never know it all, and if you’re the smartest person in the room, you’re in trouble.

    What if I fail?

    This one really irks me.  Too many people are scared of failing.  Myself and other entrepreneurs are terrified of not trying.  You will never experience a time where you are free from making mistakes.  Get over it.

    Am I doing as well as Bob?

    Never dwell on how you measure up to others.  I will admit, I am guilty of this, but have learned to recognize the times I waste thinking this way and quickly shift into more positive thought.  Worry about you and your situation.  It’s like comparing yourself to billionaire entrepreneurs instead of who they were when they were first starting and had nothing. You will always come up short.

    What to Always Remember.

    Think Different. 

    Quit thinking like an employee.  Many entrepreneurs learn to love the struggle and experience.  Employees are too concerned with comfort and security.

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    Don’t follow the rules.

    Many entrepreneurs can’t stand authority.  I can certainly relate to that.  I’m definitely not suggesting to break any laws, but some rules are meant to be broken.  For example, do you think I care about writing “properly?”  Or imagine if Pollock, Picasso, and Dali decided to “follow the rules…”  Same for Jobs, Zuckerberg, and Branson.

    Work is an opportunity.

    Entrepreneurs don’t just work to earn, they work to create and benefit others.  They love what they do so that working feels more like opportunity than necessity.  It’s important to love what you do.  Don’t waste another minute doing something you hate.  

    What to Learn to Think.

    Where can I add value? 

    This is the key right here.  Entrepreneurs create new products or services by always asking themselves where they can add value.  Richard Branson recommends entrepreneurs constantly be asking themselves, “what is wrong in my life and how can I make it better?”  The more value you add, and the more people you add value to, the more successful you will be.

    Be Authentic.

    Customers can smell a fake a mile away.  Be authentic in what you do, and don’t pretend to be something you’re not.

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    My gut is usually right.

    I can’t just tell you to follow your gut.  First, you need to start keeping tabs on your gut instincts.  How good is your track record?  If it’s really good then learn to follow it.  If not, then understand why it’s not and improve upon it.  This gets complicated, but it’s essentially known as intrapersonal intelligence.  You’ll find that most entrepreneurs are strong at this ability.  The good news is that it’s not just something you’re born with.  It is learn-able.  

    Remember, people don’t need to be educated as much as they need be reminded.  Print out this map and stick it in a common place.  Use it to occasionally calibrate your cognitive alignment. But, I’m curious.  Why even aspire to be an entrepreneur?

    I cannot speak for us all, but here are three of my reasons:

    1. Live life on my terms, not my employers.

    2. Control my time.

    3. Control my income.

    Obviously, I’m all about control and freedom, but I am confident in suggesting many entrepreneurs feel the same way. Because you’re reading this I assume you are a current or aspiring entrepreneur.

    So what are your reasons? Please share with us below.

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    This “Railway Map” Will Tell You How To Think Like An Entrepreneur

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    Last Updated on October 16, 2019

    Invaluable Lessons You Can Learn From Your Mistakes

    Invaluable Lessons You Can Learn From Your Mistakes

    Do you like making mistakes?

    I certainly don’t.

    Making mistakes is inevitable. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could be at ease with them?

    Perhaps there is a way to think of them differently and see their benefits.

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    Why Mistakes Feel Dangerous

    Mistakes often feel dangerous. Throughout human history, our errors have often been treated as dangerous for a variety of reasons:

    • Our vulnerability. We have limited and fragile support systems. When those systems fail, people often lose their lives.
    • Real dangers. Nature can be dangerous, and making mistakes can put us at the mercy of nature and its animal residents seeking a meal.
    • Ignorance. Many cultures scapegoats someone whenever there is a failure of some kind. Scapegoating can be serious and deadly.
    • Order. Many societies punish those who do not conform to the prevailing orthodoxy and treat difference and non-conformity as a mistake. Even our brains flash an error message whenever we go against prevailing social norms.

    We have a history of handling mistakes and failure in an unpleasant way. Since each of us carries our human history with us, it can be a challenge to overcome the fear of making mistakes.

    If we can embrace the reality of mistakes, we can free ourselves to be more creative in our lives and dig up some interesting insights.

    Why We Can’t Avoid Making Mistakes

    Many people operate under the notion that making mistakes is an aberration, a mistake if you will. You can call it perfectionism but it is a more substantial problem. It is really a demand for order and continuity.

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    When we think we can eliminate mistakes, we are often working from a perspective that sees the world as a fixed place. The world, however, is not so obliging. Like it or not, the world, and everything in it, is constantly changing.

    Change is more constant and pervasive than we can see with our own eyes which is why we often miss it. Our bodies are constantly changing. The natural conditions of the earth change constantly as well. Everything, including economic and cultural systems have life cycles. Everything is in a constant state of flux.

    We cannot see all of the changes going on around us since rates of change vary. Unfortunately, when we try to create a feeling of certainty and solidity in our lives or operate from the illusion of stability and order, we are fighting reality and our natural evolution which is built on adapting to change.

    It is better to continually bend into this reality rather than fight every change we experience. Fighting it can cause us to make more mistakes. Finding the benefits in change can be useful and help us minimize unnecessary mistakes.

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    Lessons Learned from Making Mistakes

    Life has so many uncertainties and variables that mistakes are inevitable. Fortunately, there are many things you can learn from making mistakes.

    Here is a list of ways to harness the mistakes you make for your benefit.

    1. Point us to something we did not know.
    2. Reveal a nuance we missed.
    3. Deepen our knowledge.
    4. Tell us something about our skill levels.
    5. Help us see what matters and what does not.
    6. Inform us more about our values.
    7. Teach us more about others.
    8. Let us recognize changing circumstances.
    9. Show us when someone else has changed.
    10. Keep us connected to what works and what doesn’t work.
    11. Remind us of our humanity.
    12. Spur us to want to better work which helps us all.
    13. Promote compassion for ourselves and others.
    14. Teach us to value forgiveness.
    15. Help us to pace ourselves better.
    16. Invite us to better choices.
    17. Can teach us how to experiment.
    18. Can reveal a new insight.
    19. Can suggest new options we had not considered.
    20. Can serve as a warning.
    21. Show us hidden fault lines in our lives which can lead us to more productive arrangements.
    22. Point out structural problems in our lives.
    23. Prompt us to learn more about ourselves.
    24. Remind us how we are like others.
    25. Make us more humble.
    26. Help us rectify injustices in our lives.
    27. Show us where to create more balance in our lives.
    28. Tell us when the time to move on has occurred.
    29. Reveal where our passion is and where it is not.
    30. Expose our true feelings.
    31. Bring out problems in a relationship.
    32. Can be a red flag for our misjudgments.
    33. Point us in a more creative direction.
    34. Show us when we are not listening.
    35. Wake us up to our authentic selves.
    36. Can create distance with someone else.
    37. Slow us down when we need to.
    38. Can hasten change.
    39. Reveal our blind spots.
    40. Are the invisible made visible.

    Reframe Reality to Handle Mistakes More Easily

    The secret to handling mistakes is to:

    • Expect them as part of the process of growth and development.
    • Have an experimental mindset.
    • Think in evolutional rather than fixed terms.

    When we accept change as the natural structure of the world, our vulnerability and humanness lets us work with the ebb and flow of life.

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    When we recognize the inevitability of mistakes as part of the ongoing experiment which life is, then we can relax more. In doing so we may make fewer of them.

    It also helps to keep in mind that trial and error is an organic natural way of living. It is how we have evolved over time. It is better to be with our natural evolution than to fight it and make life harder.

    When we adopt an evolutional mindset and see ourselves as part of the ongoing human experiment, we can appreciate that all that has been built up over time which includes the many mistakes our ancestors have made over thousands of years. Each one of us today is a part of that human tradition of learning and experimenting,

    Mistakes are part of the trial and error, experimental nature of life. The more you adopt the experimental, evolutional frame, the easier it becomes to handle mistakes.

    Handling mistakes well can help you relax and enjoy all aspects of life more.

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    Featured photo credit: Sarah Kilian via unsplash.com

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