As I am nearing the end of the year, looking back and reflecting on my progress (I am not going to list all the things I have accomplished or failed) an important lesson has arisen which stayed with me and will continue to guide me through my journey; learn from your success.
Reviewing the things I have accomplished, the rewards that came along with them, are the things I will need to keep repeating and reinventing. It isn’t the failure that has taught me the most it is what I have succeeded in that has taught me what the right thing to do is and to do more of it.
I have heard the adage from many successful entrepreneurs and businessman; learn from your failures.
Really, what has failure taught you? How things don’t work?
What these great people fail to mention is that the only thing you can learn from failure is what not to do.
Seth Godin an incredible author and thought leader who has put an idea together fittingly to my argument; do things small and work out the kinks, because in the end we are remembered not for what we fail in but what we accomplish (I added that last part in).
He continues to add that when you set out big ambitious goals you usually set yourself out for procrastination and safety. You hide behind this big goal. Why do things big when you can try doing smaller things first? Smaller goals seem more reachable and they are riskier.
Success brings along more good problems. It can inflate the ego, yet it also makes me very humble. It is something I seek, yet it is something that can blind me. Success brings an array of emotions and actions that follow suit.
Why success scares me is because it makes me comfortable. When I get comfortable I begin to lose interest. When I say reinventing I mean shifting what works into something that works better.
In my steam cleaning business, I watched my company go from zero to one hundred and then fall back down to zero.
I didn’t reinvent when I was at one hundred. I anticipated the downfall before it happened, I predicted the doomsday scenario; relying on my partner. Yet, I stood back, watching and doing nothing.
I suppose you can say I am learning from my failure.
However, I would argue if I didn’t foresee this happening I don’t think I would have learned much and I would have been left with more questions than answers.
Success can be manipulative if taken passively. Instead, I encourage you to look back this year and see what you were successful in, rinse, repeat, double or triple down, then break the wheel and reinvent yourself.
“If you don’t put yourself out of business, someone else will.” Gary Vaynerchuk.
You can take this statement literally, I understand it as follows; Don’t keep doing the same things when the market is constantly changing. Instead, adapt to your environment. Success is deadly when you think it works all the time.
When it does work, do more of it, and when it continues to work, look for ways to do things differently. Beta test new ways to improve. You can always get better, even when you feel you are the best.
The lesson here is that you don’t have to drastically change your business around, rather look at what has worked, have that as your backbone and try new things on a smaller scale and see if it is feasible to incorporate that into your business.
Failure will keep you guessing, success will teach you what and how to do things right.
To conclude this post, analyze your success from 2016, how did you reach that success? What did you do right? How can you do more of it in 2017?
Thank you for reading this post. In my next post, I will write the things I did right and how to do more of them. The purpose is to give you insight into what works.
To be continued….
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