Entrepreneurship is a relentless, unforgiving career path. It is easy to tell ourselves that things are better (or worse!) than they actually are. You can put on a brave face for the public, but it is key that you recognize when you are blowing smoke up your own behind.
I recently talked about three big lies we tell ourselves (myself included). Here are three more big blind spots.
I'll start this project/this business when I have more bandwidth
There is always tomorrow--until there is not. Like becoming a parent, there will never be an ideal time to launch your business. You will always need more resources than you have, more time than you got and more energy than you can muster. If Jobs, Musk and other visionaries waited until everything was perfect, then we wouldn't be talking about Jobs, Musk and their contemporaries right now.
As Gary Vaynerchuk recently said in an impassioned message: "I worked weekends and holidays every day starting at fourteen years old to make [my business] happen. I think back to all the time I put in of real, hard work before I saw any of the benefits." Don't wait for a red carpet.
I'll save my business/my finances if I can just net this one client
One client often isn't enough to save your business. Worse, if you put all your focus on netting one client, all things tend to fall to the wayside (even if you do get the client).
For instance, if your company gets any acquisition or investment interest, it is easy to start focusing on the potential payoff rather than the day-to-day work and the long-term strategy. And if it falls through, your company will take a while to get back on course--assuming it ever will.
I need to quit my job/end my relationships so I can truly dedicate myself to my big idea
Kids will come, money will go and jobs are necessary, but time is the one asset you can't get back. Waiting for a big chunk of time is usually a waste of time. You fall into the extreme thinking trap: You need to go big or not go at all. There are certain times when you have to leap, but that's usually after you've already recognized an opportunity and have done the homework... and that work takes time.
Keep in mind that Twitter, Yammer, Slack and other unicorns began as side projects founders did while focusing on their day job. Imagine if they waited until they could "go big". Plant the seed today.
I can identify with all of these lies. Which ones are you telling yourself today?