Here, I would like to share a few encounters to a special group of readers: to those who are starting out, or planning to start out your very first company. By that action, you have unknowingly joined a very special group of people. Oh well, admission to the group is free and automatic, and no permission or approval is needed! Welcome to the Exclusive Club of Entrepreneur’s Nightmare!
I myself had been in the group sometimes back, and still in the infant stage, as I still consider myself as a junior member in the group. I can well assure you that it is unlike anything that you’ve encountered. You no longer have to be bothered with all the “child play” such as frustration at work, fear of losing your job…etc. From now onwards, you will have the special attention created just for entrepreneurs.
Yup, of course, you didn’t have the chance to bargain for these, like you can bargain for when you apply for job. This type of nightmare is something that entrepreneurs don’t expect in the first place when they planned to start up. This is the one that you can never escape, and could never be prepared enough of. You also couldn’t find any school or college or university course that really teaches on the subject of “How to Handle Nightmare”.
The truth is, like everyone else who has experienced it; they seldom talk about it; rarely and hardly would admit about it too. So, it has been able to remains as a deep dark secret to most of us the ordinary people.
Understandably, an entrepreneur by definition is a “Risk Taker” isn’t it? They should be afraid of nothing at all, right? If you don’t believe me, try this: When you met with some entrepreneur that you know of, just ask him “So how are you copping up with the Nightmare?” Look through his or her eyes, you’ll see a warm expression like an old buddy meet again. They may smile, grin, or laugh out loud. They might even have tears in their eyes. One thing for sure, he knows the point where you are coming from.
Just another kind of Fear?
Some might mistake this nightmare as just another kind of fear. Actually, the fact is that they are different. Fear is a kind of short-lived sudden adrenaline rush resulted from the external environment. Entrepreneur Nightmare is on the other hand, self-imposed. It just comes to you and there could be no good sleep in its world. It has its own smell and pain. And it simply doesn’t go away as long you remain an entrepreneur.
During my encounters with it, I often tried to figure out what causes that. It’s not really about money. “Fear of failure” is a more close explanation, but not truly adequate. The more I think about it, the more I realized it comes from the same thing that leads me into starting out my first company in the first place. I believed I had experienced the ultimate fear. It’s a kind of exhilaration that I had never experienced before.
At the time, I certainly had no idea what lay ahead, even though I had some experience with fear. What I didn’t and couldn’t possibly imagine was that I was headed for an “own” career filled with guerrilla waiting to squeeze me out at every possible instance. I simply won’t have the chance to enjoy a good night’s sleep.
Was the encounter worth it all? You’re damn right! Though I still yet to make it up there, I supposed it was that episode that confirmed me as an entrepreneur…or an infant entrepreneur. Aside from the nightmare, the encounter also taught me of the second secret of entrepreneurship: It’s Rewards.
I realized that if you made it there, the “high”, like the nightmare, is an emotion specially reserved for those of us who kick start your own business. It is our spiritual food; it’s the substance that continues to keep us going from one encounter to another. Some might call this crazy addiction. I would think it’s of a different kind of roller coaster. In the beginning stage, I put myself slowly up the first incline, with a growing sense of excitement. When the edge is reached, there is the frightening moment before all the hell breaks loose.
Getting It Thru
Nightmare and High Fear take over as I go screaming into the unknown with my eyes tightly closed! For a while, I feel nothing but incredible fear. Then suddenly, the ride is over just that. The fear and screaming nightmare are gone. Somehow though, after a few times, I learned about the fear itself. I learned how to handle it. Thereafter, the intensity diminishes bit by bit.
The important thing is to get through that first encounter. Don’t be panic if it seems to be more than you can possibly handle. Recognize it, get used for it. Learn to look at it in your eye. Conquer it! If you don’t, you’ll probably make it to the special group, oh well at least not this time. But of course, there are no limits as to the number of times you can try.
Honestly, I really don’t have anything to help you deal with the nightmare if you decided to give it a shot. The only technique I find it helpful for myself is that I just bumped into my half-broken car, all alone and ride around. Along the way, I cursed and swear with all those four-letter words I could come out with.
Sharing the Nightmare?
Cursing aside, let me offer a few cents of advice. First, never even try to share your entrepreneur’s nightmare with others. The other party may not have been on the ride before after all. Most likely he or she won’t be able to deal with the kind feelings you tried to project. In fact, by sharing the nightmare, you are in fact trying to shift the “Blame” in case anything goes wrong. This is truly against the basic rule of the exclusive group.
And, above all, never ever take this nightmare and fears home with you. No matter how you tried to get over it, do not share it with your family and loved ones. It’ll only make them feel worse. They have already put up enough just living with an entrepreneur!
However, there is something you can and should in fact share with your family, with your loved ones. Share your “High” when you succeeded! By all means, take it home with you! Get to celebrate with your loved ones, be it a party or what. You bet the party celebration will last in the memory. You have made it through. You too will have your own “high” to share once you have conquered the nightmares and fears.
Are You Alone?
In the meantime though, you should be aware that you are not alone. Yes, there is a whole gang of us here within this special group. We are living with the same guerrilla.
My own belief is that the ability to handle the nightmare, to live with it, and to conquer it, is the single most important ingredient of entrepreneur success. I believe that it is the entrepreneur, living with his own nightmare, breathes a new life and excitement to his world.
Welcome to this exclusive Group of Entrepreneur’s Nightmare.
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