It’s Friday and I can’t think of a better day to take a more philosophical look at the way we do things and the reasons behind the way we do them. I was perusing Feedly this morning and came across an article by Dave Kashen entitled “The Entrepreneur’s “Not Enough” Trap—And How to Avoid It”. Kashen, who serves as a founder and leadership coach at one of San Francisco’s premier leadership and culture development firms, argues that there needs to be a shift in where inspiration for success comes from. Kashen states that entrepreneurs are driven by “not enough” syndrome which basically means they strive to succeed in order to satisfy this preconceived notion that they were never equal to their peers. This is common in many areas of life; athletes push themselves in this way. However, unlike in athletics were achieving a time or winning a championship can help satisfy this feeling of lacking, entrepreneurs are building these great companies all the while wearing themselves out and at the end come back around to same feeling of “not enough”. They aren’t building the companies for self-fulfillment, but rather to impress someone else. He then goes on to argue that we partially build this way out of fear. Human brains are wired to fear for evolutionary purposes. But we don’t have to fear anymore. We have no natural, unconquered predators. We should start working and thinking and building in terms of our contributions to others. Quoting from the article – “When you experience your work as contribution to others, you handle setbacks and obstacles in stride instead of seeing every bump in the road as a potential to expose you as the fraud you believe you are.” So how do you start working to fulfill yourself? Kashen gives these tips:
- Extend your breathing – while this may sound somewhat far out, extending your exhale by one second can signal to your nervous system that everything is OK. When your nervous system feels everything is under control, it frees you up for more creative things.
- Focus on your contribution – instead of holding yourself to ideals that you’ve made up in your mind that may or may not be realistic, start thinking of things you do in terms of how they impact others. Instead of focusing on what you should have done, focus on how what you did affected those involved.
- Imagine the future you want – instead of wishing things were different than they are right now; focus on what you can do in the present to shape the future you want.
In summary, work and build out of love for what you’re doing and the contributions your work provides in others’ lives instead of trying to prove to yourself that you stand up to some made up ideal. If you work for this purpose, you’ll enjoy it more and help others along the way. If you want the read the full article, check it out here: The Entrepreneur’s “Not Enough” Trap – And How to Avoid It. Content contributed by Aaron Harris, ARKSourceLink. ARKSourceLink is a proud affiliate of U.S.SourceLink, America’s largest resource network for entrepreneurs