Today I am going to take a play out of some football coaches’ books. I know: you’re thinking “football, really?” I raised three sons, so I’ve been immersed in the culture. Plus, I really do think it brings the point home.
The first coach is one of my favorites, Lou Holtz, author of Winning Every Day. In the book he has an entire chapter called “Put the Why Before the Where or What: Sense of Purpose.” I believe this is the most critical element to any business owner’s success. If your WHY is not big enough, you WILL NOT have the resilience to bounce back when things don’t go well.
And that’s why I want you to create a belief narrative so powerful that reading it keeps you on top of your game.
“Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve.”—Napoleon Hill
THE IMPORTANCE OF BELIEF
Build your belief that you can achieve what you want in your business and in life. The very fact that you can conceive of something in your mind and believe that you can do it means that you can.
Thought is powerful! If you have never read Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill, I encourage you to do so. It is often considered one of the best personal development books of all time. The book, originally written in 1937, lays out the principles of success — in other needs, what you need to make your goals a reality. Hill makes the case that it is scientifically impossible to create something in your mind, to believe that you can do it, and then not be able to.
Another resource for strengthening your belief is The Greatest Miracle in the World by Og Mandino. Most of us have not begun to tap into our true greatness and all that we are capable of achieving. Who is the greatest miracle in the world? You are! One of the secrets to unlock your greatness is in your mind. Get Mandino’s book, and you may never doubt yourself again!
Third, I recommend the book Maximum Achievement. In it, Brian Tracy tells the story of a young boy who graduated from high school with straight A’s. He took the SAT college entrance exam and received a report stating that he scored in the 99th percentile. Sadly, he thought being in the 99th percentile meant that 99% of the kids who took the SAT scored better than he did.
That fall, the boy began college. He struggled, and his grades were awful. So his advisor asked, “How could you get straight A’s in high school and do so poorly in college?” The boy said, “I’m not as smart as I thought; 99% of the people who took the SAT did better than I did.” The advisor immediately explained to him the truth: he had scored better than 99 percent of people who had taken the test. The next semester, the boy started getting A’s again.
When the boy believed that he wasn’t very smart or capable, he behaved that way and saw corresponding results. Once he was told the truth, and he again believed that he was gifted, intelligent and capable, he got A’s. Most people doubt themselves. For some, it’s occasional; for others, it’s often. We also tend to put other people on a pedestal. The funny thing is that the people we idolize often doubt themselves as much as we doubt ourselves. We all have problems, insecurities and challenges. What distinguishes truly happy, successful and fulfilled people is how they handle problems and challenges. Belief is a great tool!
The power of your mind is truly amazing. The more you believe in yourself and your abilities, the more likely you are to accomplish your goals and reach your dreams.
Create Your Belief Narrative
This important assignment is designed to help you identify and embrace all the reasons why you believe you will succeed as a small business owner. Think of it as a resume times ten! For some, this is not the easiest assignment. If you sometimes struggle with acknowledging your gifts, talents and skills, embrace this opportunity to acknowledge yourself and all that you have to offer. NOW is the time for you to have a breakthrough!
- Write an exhaustive list of the reasons why you believe you will have the life and business of your dreams. Include your skills, talents, education, philosophies, experiences, personal characteristics, etc.
- Use complete sentences and the word “I.”
- Write as much as you can. Allow your feelings and emotions to swell within you. Write until you can’t think of anything else to write.
- Stop, take a break, come back to your Belief Narrative and start writing again.
- Doing this three times is most beneficial because when you take a break and then return, you will be able to go much deeper and uncover things that weren’t right at the surface.
Each time you continue with this assignment, begin by reading what you have already written. This practice will not only help you establish the proper mindset; it will also support you in fully integrating everything you have written!
Complete this assignment. It has the power to transform your life and business. Your belief will grow instantly. And don’t forget to refer to this narrative from time to time! During challenging times when your belief is false or weak, reviewing your narrative will support you in regaining confidence in yourself. Your narrative is so important to your success that I urge you to WRITE IT NOW! Having a belief narrative will allow you to be more resilient and bounce back when you have a setback.
Learn more about this process in my Kindle Book The DBA Formula.
FAILURE ISN’T FATAL
Let’s get back to football. I have two takeaways from former NFL coach Don Shula, the NFL record holder for most career wins: “Success is not forever and failure is not fatal.”
I love this. During his career, Shula only allowed himself and his team to celebrate after a win or sulk after a loss for 24 hours. During that 24 hours, he wanted to experience all that was possible to experience so that he and his team could learn all there was to learn. Then it was back to business as they prepared for their next opponent.
You can learn from his example. As a solopreneur, is it difficult to not take the rejections personally, but you must be able to separate yourself from the business. Your success (or lack thereof) is neither a personal commendation nor a mark against you. The more you can resist being personally affected by responses from prospects, clients, partners and others, the bigger your chances of success. I believe the disappointments will run you out of business if you allow them to.
Don Shula also said, “How you rebound from a setback speaks volumes about who you are.”
The most successful quarterbacks are skilled at bouncing back. Think about it: how easy would it be to fall apart on the field every time your pass is intercepted or incomplete? They only have minutes to rebound and get back into the right state of mind. The champions in the game are also champions at doing so. This is where your belief narrative can help you to bounce back and become more resilient.