- place or state of struggle, suffering and/or misery inhabited by persons who organize and operate a business or businesses taking greater than normal financial risks, while paying their metaphorical-dues before making it to business nirvana, success.
- time aspiring business owner spends leading towards entrepreneur heaven.
Fresh into a new year and I’m making up words. In my defense, I needed a word to describe where I am AT. Not where I’ve been, not what I think I may do, not where I want to end up but this special, specific place that I am in right this second. That middle ground when you are between heaven and hell. Between your past and your future. Between where you want to be and where you are coming from. Between success and failure.
When people talk about the secrets to their successes, they always delve into their back story. They talk about the checklist of accomplishments, the awards, the dollars and cents. They use words like “hard work,” “long nights,” and “struggle.” We regularly hear from the successful persons at the top of their game motivating, giving tips and sharing info. But I want to dive into that murky place between struggle and success. What’s swimming in that space so many successful gloss over by saying ‘it didn’t happen overnight.’ What lives in that gray matter between our ears when we aren’t sure of our next move, when the ball’s in our court but we are still figuring out which game we are playing? How many long nights with lost sleep? How did that struggle affect your mental strength, your view of yourself, your vision, and your relationships? I am living all of these questions right now. I am reporting, live, from deep inside a state of Entrepreneurgatory.
Entrepreneurgatory is a lonely place on the road to success. The successful will use it for internal motivation but many find it difficult to convey this struggle to those that haven’t experienced this in-between space. This murky middle-ground may not be short term, practical or glamorous but I’m damn sure hoping it at least builds character (at most builds successful businesses!) It’s not easy to break down the real raw details of your fight to convince the fans and haters that you are not an overnight success. What fills those days, months and years between the thought “I’m going to do this” and “I’ve made it?” That’s where I’m living right now.
For perspective, there’s the sleepless nights you’re in a brain fog with no new ideas, left playing Foosball with the old ideas or kicking around things other people are already doing. You are spending days feeling so exhausted because you are overwhelmed and under-producing. The friends and family giving unsolicited advice about life and career decisions because they can’t, won’t or don’t understand your trajectory. There’s the month you spent just working at your part time job so you can pay rent, and not channeling an ounce of extra energy into anything other then sleep.eat.shower. Add to all of this the frustration in knowing this is not where you want to be. The real swirling question in Entrepreneurgatory: what is your next move?
Goals. Motivation. Direction. Organization.
My keys to climb out of Entrepreneurgatory.
Goals: I’ve mapped out my year, I’ve started in on a 3 year and 5 predictions. I’m dreaming big and realistic at the same time. (not easy- I call it my magical reality.)
Motivation: Internally motivated based on my love of giving people the tools to improve their lives through health, fitness and wellness consistency and training.
Direction: I am moving in the direction of sole proprietorship. Owning what I know with the freedom to deliver science-based workouts and regimens wrapped up and served
Organization: Increasing awareness and accountability by tracking information, ideas and progress digitally and in writing i.e. agenda, planner, calendars, dry erase board. If I write something it increases the likelihood that I will remember and act on it. Now I also include reminders, motivational quotes and to-do items on my phone’s calendar. It’s like having a personal assistant.
You guys are all along for this ride with me. I know people love to celebrate the success but come on the climb with me, grind with me, work with me, jump wit me.