What is Entrepreneurship? This word can portray many meanings, but by standard definition: Entrepreneurship has traditionally been defined as the process of designing, launching and running a new business, which typically begins as a small business, such as a startup company, offering a product, process or service for sale or hire, and the people who do so are called 'entrepreneurs'. Many people become overwhelmed and never actually attempt to start that small business or startup company, but the people that do take the leap are in for one of the hardest challenges one can face.
Today entrepreneurship and startup culture is glamorous and sexy, which is understandable. I wanted to get in on the action, as I believed in myself and thought if I had a unique idea and worked hard then people would want my product. If you look at Silicon Valley or Silicon Beach in California, you see companies filing IPOs and founders becoming billionaires overnight. Just hearing that is great marketing for startup culture.
However, overnight success is only what you see on the outside, overnight success stories do not exist. Success comes from pouring all of your time and energy into an uncertain idea, choosing to work instead of going out, pitching your idea non-stop, hearing rejection after rejection from investors, prioritizing your health, building a team without any capital incentives, and knowing that it could be a ten-year project. You may even find yourself at IHOP alone one night at midnight realizing that you have lost a majority of your friends. After a certain point entrepreneurship turns into a way of life, where people just start to drift away from you. This could be because there is not enough time to keep the relationship going, they think that you are out of your mind or do not align with your vision, or life just sort of happens. This can lead to times of loneliness that can affect your self-esteem and make you feel like you are on a small boat in the open sea. On top of the loneliness, even if you want to quit the entrepreneurship game it takes hold of you. It can make working a traditional job seem like a waste of time or feel eminently unsatisfying which equates to being unfilled.
Nevertheless, these types of obstacles are common to an entrepreneur, and once they start to manifest you need to realize it and lean in hard. Seek out a mentor, listen to podcasts, workout, and find ways to stay motivated. This is the time when most wannabe entrepreneurs quit. The process is extremely easier said than done, as I am currently well into this phase of entrepreneurship, literally living in a basement. There are a few philosophies that keep me motivated: regret, my passion for travel, meeting great people along the way, opening the door future opportunities, and knowing that the process is making me a stronger person. I try to see the win-win in every situation, and even though I am suffering, I am suffering for my passion that I know is worthwhile.
“To dare is to lose one’s footing momentarily. Not to dare is to lose oneself.” –