Ideas are a dime a dozen. It doesn't matter if you have the best idea in the world for a business or any other endeavor, if you can't turn it into a reality. The only thing that really matters for any project or business is execution--and it begins by simply getting started.
I have always felt that you can accomplish just about anything through sheer will and perseverance, but a lot of entrepreneurs just can't seem to muster up the gumption to get past the idea stage.
Here are three key ways in which you might be holding yourself back from getting started on your side project or business and how to overcome them.
1. You're afraid of failure.
The quickest and easiest way to fail at turning your idea into a business is to fail to try. The prospect that a venture might fail is something that entrepreneurs must come to grips with before starting up. Businesses are risky, but remember that there are plenty of cases where failing at one idea can lead to a pivot and success in another.
Solution: Burn the ships.
If you are going to start a business, you should be all in. This might mean different things to different people. It's the notion that investing your own money, quitting your job, or putting pressure on yourself by telling everyone you know about the business you are starting. By burning your ships, there's no looking back and only one direction to go--forward.
2. You're waiting for inspiration, or it's not a good time.
There will always be a way for you to convince yourself that it's not a good time to start your business or that you are waiting to feel particularly enthused or inspired. Plenty of entrepreneurs will tell you that once they started their company, they wish they had started earlier. There is never a perfect time to start a business and the earlier you can get your creations into a customers' hands, the better. Quoting the Chinese proverb, "the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago, the second best time is today."
Solution: Start small and easy
If you're having trouble starting, lower your personal barrier to entry. Start by designating a small amount of time, setting a timer, and devoting all of your focus to one small aspect of your idea or project. You'll notice that even devoting 15 minutes to researching, writing, or building your product is enough to get ball rolling toward a full-on work session.
3. You're in it for the wrong reasons.
One culprit for why people lose excitement quickly after the initial "honeymoon" stage is because they don't have a deeper connection to the idea. When building my latest startup Porch.com, I was personally motivated to fix how people live in and improve their homes because of the personal problems I faced. My personal connection gave me even more energy to go all in and build the solution.
Solution: Deeply understand your why
Any good entrepreneur can explain what their startup idea is and how they would execute it, but great entrepreneurs clearly understand the why behind what they are doing. It's imperative to pick something that truly resonates with you because when you're exhausted after a 12-hour day and still have work to do, you need a deeper motivation to keep you moving.
Look internally to find what factors are holding you back from capturing your startup dreams so you can get out and build something great.