Being an entrepreneur is hard. (Hah! Newsflash!)
And some days, I just don’t want to be an entrepreneur.
That’s what happened last week.
I show up to work feeling like hell. I’m uncomfortable. I want to get up and party. I want to curl up in bed. I want to be anywhere other than where I am.
And when I get this way, I get lethargic. I start looking for distractions—YouTube, checking email compulsively, making up to-do list items, even looking through my spam folder—always a good decision.
These actions beget more feelings of stuckness and lethargy. I start to feel like a lousy coach, a lousy business owner, a lousy, well, everything. The cycle feeds on itself until, usually, something gives. And it’s rarely pretty.
(Do you find yourself doing this?)
The cycle looks something like this: Feelings -> Actions -> Feelings -> Identity.
I do this habitually. I have since I was old enough to make my own decisions. And it’s been undercutting my perseverance, and ultimately my impact.
In Resilience, Eric Greitens urges us to reverse the order of the cycle.
“I told you that I was less interested in how you feel and more interested in who you want to be... I asked you to write down those same three words in the opposite direction. It’s the direction that holds the most promise for your life: IDENTITY, ACTION, FEELINGS. You begin by asking, ‘Who am I going to be?’ You decided to be courageous again. So what’s next? Act that way. Act with courage.”
In fits and starts, I’ve been practicing this.
Two weeks ago, I felt like hell before sitting down to write—which would have inspired a less-than-beautiful writing session. And I thought, who am I committed to being?Immediately the answer was clear: a published author. And I went onto have a writing session as productive as any other.
And last week, I noticed that I still haven’t kicked the habit.
But—I’m committed to being a successful entrepreneur. I’m committed to my mission: empowering difference-makers to change the world. And remembering that, then deciding who I’m going to be, puts energy into my body, it that empowers me to take action—action that puts me back on the path that I’m here to walk.
So, where are you stuck? Where do you feel like hell?
Who are you committed to being?
A successful salesperson? A loving wife? A successful business owner?
Then, act that way. Even if it really hurts.
(And then do this until it becomes a habit ;)