Posts Tagged "IT"

The most successful people in the world have written it all out for you.


9 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

 

Reading is essential if you want to be successful in business. It will expose you to new ideas and modes of thinking, and will give you access to diverse knowledge.

Whatever form of business you’re in, the knowledge you glean from books will be a bedrock to sustain you through trials and failures, and can help you boost your successes. As we enter 2019, here are 19 books to spark ideas and creative thought, and put you on solid footing to achieve your goals.

1. The Execution Factor: The One Skill That Drives Success by Kim Perell

The Execution Factor offers a straightforward approach to success by identifying 5 traits shared by people who know how to effectively accomplish their dreams and achieve their goals. Kim Perell is a highly successful startup entrepreneur, executive and angel investor. She shows that the ability to achieve success isn’t entirely based on having a great idea, an advanced degree or a high IQ. Perell believes the ability to execute is the difference between success and failure.

2. Purple Cow: Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable by Seth Godin

In a typical farmyard setting, nothing would get your attention quite like a purple cow. According to Seth Godin’s book Purple Cow, this is the secret to successful marketing strategies — be different and exciting, generate interest and be remembered. Run-of-the-mill tactics are bland and leave your business faceless and characterless. If you want to be remarkable and get ahead of competitors, you have to make people do a double take.

Related: What Seth Godin Wants You To Know About Marketing in 2019

3. Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell

In Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell examines people who have achieved success so extraordinary that it lies outside the realm of normal experiences. He explores the factors that make the difference between successful and unsuccessful people. Filled with anecdotes that identify common misconceptions, Gladwell’s book shows that success is not just a matter of IQ, but a combination of hard work and opportunity.

4. You Are a Badass at Making Money: Master the Mindset of Wealth by Jen Sincero

You Are a Badass at Making Money crystallizes the concept that financial abundance begins with your mindset. Jen Sincero combines hilarious personal narratives with “aha” concepts to help you grasp your earning potential and get real results. Channeling the sass and wit that made her first You Are a Badass book a bestseller, Sincero helps readers identify and overcome their limiting beliefs surrounding money.

5. How Successful People Think: Change Your Thinking, Change Your Life by John C. Maxwell

The world’s most successful people have one thing in common: they think differently from everyone else. In How Successful People Think, John C. Maxwell lays out 11 specific ways of thinking you can practice to live a better, happier, more successful life. The book treats thinking as a discipline: the more you work at developing these skills, the better at them you’ll be.

Related: 11 Ways Successful People Think Differently Than You

6. Unfu*k Yourself: Get Out of Your Head and into Your Life by Gary John Bishop

In this straightforward handbook, author Gary John Bishop gives readers the tools and advice to break through the crap that’s weighing them down. Bishop wants you to become the best version of yourself that you can be. First, though, you need to stop getting in your own way by filling your head with negative self-talk. Unfu*k Yourself will help silence that hateful inner critic and get you feeling more positive about yourself and your life.

7. When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing by Daniel H. Pink

Timing is of the utmost importance in our lives. According to Daniel Pink, time of day can have a huge impact on our decision making, how well we learn and our ability to be effective and productive. Drawing from research in psychology, biology and economics, Pink reveals in When how we can best time our lives to succeed. He offers strategies for self-improvement and shows how we can we use hidden patterns of the day to build the ideal schedule.

8. Principles: Life and Work by Ray Dalio

In Principles, author Ray Dalio shares the unconventional principles that he’s developed, refined and used over the past 40 years to create unique results in both life and business. Through these principles, Dalio shows that any person or organization can achieve their goals. Dalio founded the investment firm Bridgewater Associates in 1975, which has become one of the largest and best performing hedge funds in the world.

Related: Billionaire Ray Dalio Reveals The Secrets to His Success

9. Rise and Grind: Outperform, Outwork, and Outhustle Your Way to a More Successful and Rewarding Life by Daymond John and Daniel Paisner

Daymond John knows that a killer work ethic can pay off. He founded a clothing line on a $40 budget by hand-sewing hats between his shifts at Red Lobster. His brand FUBU now has over $6 billion in sales. Rise and Grind is the highly anticipated follow-up to John’s bestselling The Power of Broke. He shows how grit and persistence helped him overcome the obstacles and fueled his success. He delves into the hard-charging routines and winning secrets of those who have ground their way to the top.

10. Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don’t by Jim Collins

How is it that some companies defy the gravity that seems to hold so many other businesses down and achieve long-term success and superiority? In Good to Great, Collins identifies and evaluates the factors that allow elite companies to make the transition from merely good to truly great. Using metrics on businesses’ financial performance, Collins and his research team identified companies that fulfilled their criteria for “greatness” and analyzed how they achieved success.

11. Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life…And Maybe the World by William H. McRaven

Inspired by a powerful commencement speech that Naval Admiral William H. McRaven delivered to the graduating class of the University of Texas at Austin, Make Your Bed presents 10 life lessons McRaven gleaned during his military career. Building on the core tenets of his original speech, which went viral with over 10 million views, McRaven recounts tales from his own life and from those he encountered during his military service who dealt with hardship and made tough decisions with determination, compassion, honor and courage.

Related: 50 Ways Entrepreneurship Will Change Your Life

12. The One Minute Manager by Kenneth Blanchard and Spencer Johnson M.D.

For decades, The One Minute Manager has helped people achieve success in their professional and personal lives. This book, which offers a classic parable of a young man looking for an effective manager, is more relevant and useful than ever. And while the principles it lays out are timeless, this new edition has been updated to help readers succeed more quickly in a rapidly changing world.

13. Building a StoryBrand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen by Donald Miller

Whether you’re the marketing director of a multibillion dollar company or the owner of a small business, Building a StoryBrand will forever transform the unique value you bring to your customers. The StoryBrand process is author Donald Miller’s solution to help businesses clarify their marketing messages and connect with customers. Miller focuses on 7 universal story points that all people respond to and that will drive customer purchases.

14. See You at the Top: 25th Anniversary Edition by Zig Ziglar

See You at the Top is a perennial best seller that has changed the lives of countless people. It teaches the value of a building a healthy self-image, clarifies why goals are important and how to set them, and then motivates you to reach them. This revised edition stresses the importance of honesty, loyalty, faith, integrity and strong personal character. It provides step-by-step instructions on how to change the way you think about yourself and your surroundings.

Related: 12 Powerfully Inspiring Quotes From Zig Ziglar

15. The Lean Start-Up by Eric Ries

Before you create any sort of business you’ll want to read The Lean Start-Up, as it can save you time and money you’d likely have wasted otherwise. Eric Ries looks at why most startups fail, and how those failures are preventable. His approach builds companies that are both more efficient and leverage human creativity more effectively. His methods rely on “validated learning,” rapid experimentation and specific practices that shorten product development cycles.

16. The 4-Hour Work Week: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich by Tim Ferriss

Solo entrepreneurs can learn a lot from Tim Ferriss, who made lifestyle design popular. This is a must read for anyone with an entrepreneurial itch, or anyone who dreams of escaping the rat race to live their life the way they want. Ferriss details smart strategies like outsourcing, following the 80/20 rule and automating processes. Forget the concept of working decades for retirement. The 4-Hour Work Week is a blueprint for how to trade a long-haul career for short work bursts and frequent “mini-retirements.”

17. How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie

Dale Carnegie’s groundbreaking and enduring best-selling book has carried countless people up the ladder of success. How to Win Friends and Influence People offers simple advice than can help you build popularity points and expand your network. Among the important lessons it offers: 6 ways to make people like you, 12 ways to win people over to your way of thinking and 9 ways to change people without arousing resentment.

18. Crush It!: Why NOW Is the Time to Cash In on Your Passion by Gary Vaynerchuk

If you’d like to turn your hobbies and passions into internet gold, Crush It! is a great playbook. Gary Vaynerchuk explains the why and how of creating irresistible personal brands and how to turn your interests into a real business. Vaynerchuk provides readers with step-by-step advice on how to harness the power of the Internet to make their entrepreneurial dreams come true.

19. Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder by Arianna Huffington

There’s more to being successful than an impressive salary and title. Media mogul Arianna Huffington shows readers how to create a lifestyle where success is measured by something more meaningful and personal than just money and power. The Huffington Post founder shares personal anecdotes and insight on leading a happy and successful life, in and out of the office. Thrive is an excellent guide for those aspiring to elevate employee morale and well-being.

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While it’s true that entrepreneurship is worth pursuing as a career, it’s also true that it’s a tough career.


7 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.


That’s an impressive word: entrepreneurship. 

It’s a word that’s filled with optimism and the prospect of joy and riches. Millennials and veteran careerists subscribe to the world of entrepreneurship with strong enthusiasm, hope and energy. It’s a safe, secure and simple path to freedom and success.

Related: Let’s Forget About Morning Routines for a Second and Talk About Finishing Strong

You know how it works. Just dream of an idea, package a product and sell that product to your target customers. Then you get to wait by the ATM to receive a torrent of cash as it lands in your corporate account.

While it’s true that entrepreneurship is worth pursuing as a career, it’s also true that it’s a tough career. Of course, successful entrepreneurs are smart, hard-working folks.

In fact, if you could go back in time to observe how they started, you would be able to observe how much they toiled. They worked hard to get where they are today. In today’s internet-empowered world, it’s easier to build a startup than to do a five-minute workout.

I mean, with a few clicks from your bed, you can kick-start your online business, and you can run it on the go, with your smartphone. Launching a business is not the problem. Building it into a successful empire is.

Related: 3 Popular Trends Young Entrepreneurs Can’t Afford to Follow

Here are the painful realities of becoming a successful entrepreneur.

Your idea may just be a mere hallucination.

Just because you dreamed of building that billion-dollar company doesn’t mean that, when you turn your ideas into products and inject some money into marketing them, you’ll become the next success story in your niche. Because the world of entrepreneurship is filled with uncertainties.

There’s no guarantee that your target market will patronize your products. There’s no guarantee that you’ll make a profit in your first year. There’s no guarantee that you’ll become the next success story in your industry.

The sooner you accept this fact, the sooner you’ll develop the resilient habits of successful entrepreneurs. Knowing that failure is inevitable, successful entrepreneurs care less about it. And that powers their passion to keep building and refining their ideas … until they succeed.

So, execute your dreams and ideas, because, “Ideation without execution is a delusion.”

Your ideas might not sell. You just have to take the risk. So, build, launch and work tirelessly to succeed at your new time-consuming career.

Related: How to Forge Your Own Path in Business

Entrepreneurship is a 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. job.

What will happen if you think that entrepreneurship is an easy career?

You know, just show up to work at your leisure and tinker around with your passion. You’re wrong if you think that entrepreneurship works like that. The painful truth is, building your business is more complex and tedious and consumes more time than your normal day job.

Knowing that they are their own bosses, successful entrepreneurs wake up early every morning and show up every day — for long hours — to think, create and invent for their customers.

Because it’s not easy. They have to grind. They have to compete in the marketplace. They have to put their products in front of their prospects. They have to snatch some of their competitors’ customers. They have to promote their brand to the world.

So, they fight to give tons of hours to achieve these goals — or fail woefully in the business arena. You’ve got to do the same to survive as an entrepreneur. That’s why you have to be ready to counteract the “vampires” of your productivity and success.

Related: 5 Truths About Entrepreneurship You’re Better Off Knowing From the Start

Here’s what I mean:

Procrastination is your biggest enemy.

Every business builder has numerous enemies: competitors, insufficient funds, inadequate willpower.

But, the biggest enemy of them all is procrastination.

You may have a great idea. You may be the most brilliant founder in your industry. You may have a couple of angel investors willing to invest in your startup.

All of these are important when you are building a successful venture, but you must have the discipline to execute. If you don’t, believe me, none of these will matter, because the secret to building your company lies in your productivity.

Sometimes, when you’re down, you feel withdrawn, and you will choose to play Grand Theft Auto rather than work on your startup. The truth is, everyone faces the wrath of procrastination at some point. But, successful entrepreneurs know how to deal with it decisively.

They normally itemize their tasks for the day. They show up every day to work on those tasks. They remain focused, working on their tasks one at a time, finishing one before moving on to another. And they are consistent.

Every day, every week, every month, they show up to do great work — quality work that will move them closer to achieving their goals, mission and vision. Hence, they dominate their market.

Related: The Pivotal Points: 3 Critical Tests All Entrepreneurs Must Pass

Are you willing to sacrifice your life?

Running a business is more than just working for a few hours on weekends, making a few bucks and cozying on the sofa with your loved ones for the rest of the week.

To become a business builder, you need to be willing to sacrifice a lot — sometimes to the detriment of your life — for your consumers. If you read Steve Jobs‘s biography, you’ll see what I mean.

There was a man full of passion and love and admiration for a product he named after his favorite fruit — Apple. He loved his product so much, like a mother loves her child. And he made a lot of sacrifices for it because he realized that was the only way he could “put a dent in the universe.”

So, Jobs devoted his entire life to building Apple. He would leave his family in the wee hours of the morning to show up early, before anyone else, at Apple headquarters in California. He would stay, even after working hours, to brainstorm, refine and reinforce his many ideas about the company, barely getting home to eat dinner with his wife.

In short, he sacrificed his life for it. But, his legacy remains to this day.

Whether you’re building another iPhone or just starting up as a freelancer, get ready to pour your sweat and blood and life to appease your market. You may think that it isn’t necessary, but it is.

As a digital marketer and blogger, I realize that to be an expert, I need to write every day. So, I sacrifice my social life almost entirely. I shut myself in my room — my wife hates that — and do nothing but write, so I can please what Stephen King called “the boys in the basement.”

That’s the only way to master the craft, to survive, or to last long as an entrepreneur. And that’s what you must do if you’re serious about becoming a successful entrepreneur.

Sacrifice.

If you’re not willing to sacrifice for your customers, don’t include the word “success” in your vocabulary.


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3 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.


Stock prices continue to hinge on the uncertain progress of U.S.-China trade negotiations.

Hopes for a deal were higher today and stocks were up sharply in the morning, though they lost steam in the afternoon. The Entrepreneur Index™ closed up 0.69 percent, while the Dow and S&P 500 indexes were up 0.64 percent and 0.54 percent respectively. The Nasdaq composite index gained 0.95 percent.

Twitter and the FANG stocks were back out front leading the technology sector higher today. All of them were up more than one percent and Netflix rose 3.6 percent.

Twitter, up 5.25 percent today, had the biggest gain on the Entrepreneur Index™. It continues to recover much of the ground lost since July when active account users fell for the first time on the social media network. That was largely because of Twitter’s ongoing efforts to rid the network of automated “bot” accounts spreading politically and/or commercially motivated messages.

The market appears to believe the company has a handle on the issue now. The stock has been one of the hottest in the volatile tech sector of late. It is up 37 percent from the October low and has risen 14 percent in the last five trading sessions.

Ever-volatile Wynn Resorts had one of the biggest gains on the day, rising 3.66 percent. Meanwhile, O’Reilly Automotive Inc. continues to thrive. The auto-parts retailer’s stock was up 3.25 percent today and has risen 47 percent this year. Other good gains were posted by Ralph Lauren Corp. (2.69 percent), salesforce.com (2.41 percent) and Cerner Corp. (2.13 percent).

Investor day at Under Armour Inc. was one to forget for shareholders this year. The stock fell 10.44 percent — the biggest decline on the Entrepreneur Index™ today — as executives at the apparel-maker addressed analysts and investors about the company’s outlook.

Analysts are skeptical of the company’s ability to grow sales, particularly in the competitive U.S. market where sales are falling for the company. Under Armour has also not entirely put a cultural issue centered on the inappropriate expensing of entertainment by employees–think strip clubs–behind it. Two marketing executives close to CEO Kevin Plank were fired this week. The stock has recovered nicely from a three-year slide, up 43 percent this year, but is down 18 percent in the last four trading sessions.

Outside of Under Armour, the REITs were the weakest performers on the Entrepreneur Index™ today. The sector followed the “rates up/REITs down” trading adage. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose three points today and all nine REITs in the index were down on the day. Shopping center operator Macerich Company (-4.48 percent), SL Green Realty Corp. (-2.77 percent) and Kimco Realty Corp. (-2.75 percent) had the biggest declines.

Retailers L Brands (-0.66 percent), Walmart (-0.79 percent) and Dollar Tree Inc. (-0.27 percent) were also down on the day.

The Entrepreneur Index™ collects the top 60 publicly traded companies founded and run by entrepreneurs. The entrepreneurial spirit is a valuable asset for any business, and this index recognizes its importance, no matter how much a company has grown. These inspirational businesses can be tracked in real time on Entrepreneur.com.


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The stock market was down today, but FANG stocks were still up.


4 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.


Can the FANG stocks save this faltering stock market?

The big technology companies that have led the nearly 10-year bull market in stocks made a stand today, as stock prices across segments of the market fell sharply in morning trading. Facebook, Alphabet Inc., Amazon and Netflix all ended up more than one percent on the day and helped the market recover from intense selling this morning.

In a dramatic reversal, the Entrepreneur Index™, down nearly three percent by late morning, closed the day with a gain of 0.85 percent. The Dow Industrials index was down nearly 800 points before rallying almost 700 points to close down 0.32 percent. The S&P 500 index was down 0.15 percent, while the Nasdaq composite index was up 0.42 percent.

The bond market had another wild day, as investors sold stocks and moved into the safety of U.S. Treasuries in the morning, then reversed course in the afternoon. The 10-year Treasury bond yield was down more than nine basis points to a low of 2.83 percent before closing the day at 2.89 percent.

Technology stocks, led by the FANGs, performed better than the broader market. Most had gains on the day with Netflix posting the largest at 2.74 percent.

The biggest decline on the Entrepreneur Index™ was posted by Rollins Inc., the premier name in termite and pest-control services. With no obvious catalyst, Rollins’ stock was down 5.7 percent today, though it is still up 27 percent for the year.

Kimco Realty Corp. a REIT specializing in shopping centers, had the biggest gain on the index, rising 5.31 percent. With interest rates falling sharply, other high-yielding REITs, including Equity Residential (2.67 percent), Extra Space Storage (3.01 percent) and Simon Property Group (3.0 percent) also posted good gains on the day.

Financial services companies continued to struggle due to fears about the economy. Investment bank Jefferies Financial Group fell 2.73 percent. The market volatility is also hurting asset management companies. BlackRock, down six percent on Tuesday fell another 2.08 percent today. Franklin Resources was also down 2.22 percent after losing nearly three percent Tuesday.

Oil and gas producer Hess Corp. was down 2.82 percent after OPEC members failed to agree to cuts in oil production at their meeting in Vienna today. The cartel delayed its decision until consulting tomorrow with Russia — the second largest producer after the U.S. The price of West Texas crude oil was down 2.33 percent to $51.66 per barrel. Hess Corp.’s stock is down 30 percent since the beginning of October but is still up 11 percent so far this year.

Other stocks posting gains today included Costco Wholesale Group, up 3.03 percent, and active apparel maker Under Armour Inc., which was up 3.13 percent. Homebuilder D.R. Horton Inc. rose 1.87 percent as mortgage rates fell to a two-month low. The stock has been under pressure as interest rates rose and the housing market showed signs of deteriorating.

The about face in the stock market today followed a report in the Wall Street Journal that the Federal Reserve Bank may halt or pause its current policy of interest rate hikes. The Fed’s next meeting is on Dec. 19.

The Entrepreneur Index™ collects the top 60 publicly traded companies founded and run by entrepreneurs. The entrepreneurial spirit is a valuable asset for any business, and this index recognizes its importance, no matter how much a company has grown. These inspirational businesses can be tracked in real time on Entrepreneur.com.


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Stock prices fell sharply on Tuesday, and it’s not hard to see why.


4 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.


Investor optimism sparked by a truce in the trade war between China and the U.S. proved short-lived.

A day after the market rallied on news of a 90-day delay in further tariff increases by the U.S. against China, President Trump reminded people on Twitter this morning that he was a “tariff man.”

Stock prices fell sharply with the Dow Industrials index falling 799 points and all three major indexes down more than three percent. The Entrepreneur Index™ declined 3.76 percent and only two of 60 stocks in the index posted gains on the day.

Trade worries weren’t the only thing rattling the markets. Bond yields fell dramatically, as investors anticipate a slowing economy. The yield on the 5-year Treasury bond fell more than five basis points to 2.78 percent and is now below the 2-year bond yield. Meanwhile, the 10-year Treasury yield fell a staggering eight points to 2.91 percent and is just 12 basis points above the 2-year yield. Such yield curve inversions — when long-term interest rates fall below short-term — usually portend an economic slowdown, if not recession.

Cyclical and financial stocks were particularly hard hit today. The Dow Jones U.S. Banks index was down nearly five percent, and financial services firms were weak across the board. Banks, which typically borrow short-term to lend long-term, are hurt by yield curve inversions.

Capital One Financial was down 6.12 percent and investment bank Jefferies Financial Group fell 7.01 percent. Asset manager BlackRock Inc. was down 5.99 percent while competitor Franklin Resources was down 2.89 percent.

Fedex Corp, considered a good barometer of the U.S. economy, fell 6.3 percent. Investors may also have been spooked by a research note from Morgan Stanley analyst Ravi Shanker, who warned about the potential impact of Amazon.com on the delivery industry. Amazon continues to add planes to its own personal delivery fleet and has an air cargo hub in Kentucky that may eventually handle up to 100 planes.

Business services provider Cintas Corp. and homebuilder D.R. Horton were down 5.18 and 4.5 percent respectively. Retail stocks were also rocked by fears about the economy. Bed Bath & Beyond was down 6.97 percent percent, bringing its drop for the year to 44 percent. Walmart (-2.97 percent) and Costco Wholesale Group (-2.5 percent) had smaller declines.

The clothing retailers also gave back their gains and more from yesterday. Gap Inc. was down 4.44 percent, while Ralph Lauren fell 4.42 percent and L Brands was off 3.9 percent. Under Armour Inc. was down 2.73 percent.

Wynn Resorts and Estee Lauder Companies, two stocks that rose sharply yesterday on the trade news, also gave back their gains today. Wynn was down 7.83 percent — the biggest decline on the Entrepreneur Index™ today, while Estee Lauder fell 5.61 percent.

Technology stocks were weak across the board. The volatile shares of graphics chipmaker NVIDIA Corp. fell 7.6 percent. Other big losses in the tech sector included Amazon.com(-5.87 percent), Netflix (-5.16 percent) and Alphabet Inc. (-4.96 percent). Akamai Technologies had the smallest loss of the thirteen tech stocks on the index, falling 2.18 percent.

Other notable declines on the index included medical device manufacturer Boston Scientific Corp.(-5.17 percent) and liquor producer Brown-Forman Corp. (-4.71).

Only two stocks on the index had gains today. Tesla was up 0.34 percent and O’Reilly Auto Parts rose 0.03 percent.

The Entrepreneur Index™ collects the top 60 publicly traded companies founded and run by entrepreneurs. The entrepreneurial spirit is a valuable asset for any business, and this index recognizes its importance, no matter how much a company has grown. These inspirational businesses can be tracked in real time on Entrepreneur.com.




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Find focus as you grow.


5 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.


Life as an entrepreneur can often feel like being in the middle of a natural disaster. There are daily fires to put out, endless lists of things to do and relationships to build, both within your company and outside. You’re constantly looking for where you can push your company’s growth, as well as your own.

Feeling like you’re constantly being pulled in a hundred different directions isn’t just the norm — it can be seen as an achievement. But when you’re trying to focus on so many different things at once, are you really devoting your full time and attention to each one? Having worked on Wall Street and founded my own company, I can safely bet that the answer is no.

Related: This Entrepreneur Crashed and Burned Out From Stress. Now He’s on a Mission to Change the ‘Hustle’ Lifestyle.

In my own path, I’ve found that starting a practice of mindfulness has been a game changer in directing my scope and finding clarity in my decisions. If you need proof, just ask my team. Really, it’s no surprise that there’s such a strong overlap between mindfulness and building a business. A lot of things can — and do — go wrong in the entrepreneurial process, but it’s the ability to step back, take stock of what happened and learn from these failures that is key to any company’s success.

No matter what you’ve heard about mindfulness, making it a regular part of your life doesn’t need to be an overwhelming task. Even setting aside just five minutes every day can help you be a more present and effective leader. Here are three ideas to get started on a more mindful entrepreneurial path:

1. Gratitude.

One of the most centering ideas in my mindfulness practice has been the idea that we are all enough. As a founder, it’s all too easy to spiral into an endless series of comparisons, impatience and negative thoughts — especially when every five minutes, there’s an article about a company that has raised 10 times the amount of money as you have or is encroaching on your space. Instead, it’s important to be grateful for how far you’ve already come.This doesn’t mean that you won’t have these thoughts or that you don’t want your company to be competitive. It means that no matter what others accomplish, you’re able to take a step back from the hustle and acknowledge what you’ve achieved so you can set your sights on your next goal.

Related: 4 Ways to Increase Your Focus at Work

2. Generosity.

Generosity is often thought about in the context of money or time, but when it comes to mindfulness, setting an intention to be generous with empathy and compassion can have a serious impact on the people and energy around you. With hectic schedules and continual high stakes, founders often don’t realize when they get into a space where the energy they’re putting out isn’t productive for themselves or their team. Rather, being generous with forgiveness actually cultivates a better, more balanced workplace where everyone is empowered to push themselves and take risks. In the long run, this not only allows you to focus more clearly on the work that still needs to be done, but it can also fuel your business’s creativity and growth.

3. Letting go.

Founders are often taught that you can’t be emotional, that you can’t ever breakdown. Or if you do show emotions, the only acceptable ones are anger or joy. The reality is that in high pressure environments, like starting your own company, all sorts of emotions are going to come up — and that’s not a bad thing. But what can be detrimental is trying to stomp all of them down.

Related: How to Overcome Emotional Obstacles

At a recent Squad Talks panel on mindfulness and meditation, Steve Schlafman, a partner at Primary Ventures, shared that “meditation isn’t the absence of thoughts and feelings, it’s the recognition of those thoughts.” Similarly, “letting go” suggests an alternative to subduing whatever it is that you’re feeling — making room to acknowledge and address the emotions that come up, no matter what they are.

In conclusion, being mindful as an entrepreneur is all about finding balance between hustle and patience. With so many balls rolling at once, it’s too easy to feel like you’re constantly behind. But practicing gratitude, generosity and acceptance along your path will help you find alignment so you can bring all of your talent to your company’s growth.


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