When you’re going through hell

Reading about entrepreneurs and founders is often reading about their bold moves, grit, grandeur and successes. However these may hold valuable lessons, there is a darker side to entrepreneurship I’m sure every founder relates to.  Anxiety attacks, feeling depressed after your pitch bombed, self-doubt, feeling emotionally isolated from your dearest and nearest, and a continuous psychological bombardment of opinions that exhaust you. I’m sure you’ve been in this place, and I just wanted to share this post with you if you’re still in this place.There’s a lesson to be learned in all this. I am convinced that every founder need to experience at least a minimum of hardship and “pain” where he needs to been tried and tested, in order to truly bond with his idea. If not, chances are likely he (or she) will give up later when the going gets though. A better way to deal with this, is to be aware that this “pain” is indeed coming your way and instead of running away from it, you should simply stand up and embrace it when it hits you.

It is a test to see if you have what it takes to engineer your idea into a viable business, and potentially a success.  But while doing so, be prepared to have a rough mental and emotional ride.  I’m sure no one will ever forget their first pitch, because most likely it sucked and the people you were pitching to, were probably not too shy to clue you in on what they thought about it.

Pitching is like presenting your baby to the first visitors that come to the hospital to see your firstborn. You think your baby is the world, but most likely your friendly visitors will vomit in their mouths by simply looking at what you call “a beautiful baby”.

For a founder, you need to learn to deal with being rejected early on. In fact, you will be rejected about 90% of your time. Of that remaining part, 9% will be doubting and 1% will be enthusiast. But, whatever may come, always try and learn from the feedback. Thank your assessor politely, and keep in touch with them.

But getting a “No” is actually not a bad thing. It means that someone actually is taking the time to digest your pitch and critically review it. These people might very well become your most important feedback channels for later stages.

But just know, also this will pass.  So, you will either abandon your idea concluding it was rubbish, or you will continue to adapt until your idea and product have actual value. There is no failure, except for not trying…

Just remember. As the great Winston Churchill once said, “If you are going through hell, keep going”. Amen to that!