Quick Tip: How to Take Risks that Build Your Business

by Kristen Burgess
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It’s crucial for an entrepreneur to know when to keep pushing on a project, business, vision… and when to change gears. One of the things that I’ve discovered about entrepreneurs (even in myself because obviously, I’m an entrepreneur): we come to a decision place and we ask, “Should I continue working on this? I’ve heard that entrepreneurs just push, and push, and push, and push, and make their idea come true… or should I quit on this particular things and get started on something else… because entrepreneurs are wise enough to know that not everything pans out?”

One of the things that I’ve discovered with entrepreneurs, my clients, and even with myself is that a lot of times it’s difficult to make that decision because we’ve heard the concept that “the goal is just one foot down.” If you just dig for one more day, you’ll hit gold. But at the same time, we hear of people that chase dreams for 20 years and they’ve been chasing the wrong thing. So today I want to dig into this concept and give you some guidelines that you can use to determine, “Do I continue going or do I pull back and change gears?”

I’ve termed this “bounded aggression” in my mind. What I mean is this: we want to be aggressive… and have some boundaries. Entrepreneurs tend to be more aggressive than the average population.

I want to differentiate this idea of aggression from the idea of aggressive temperament or aggressive behavior. I can be very aggressive in pursuing a goal but I don’t have to raise my voice, I don’t have to throw a temper tantrum, I don’t have to do the things that we sometimes associate with emotional aggression. Instead, it’s an aggressiveness of mind that says, “I’m going to hang in there to make it happen.”

But where does the limit come in, where does the “boundedness” come in? The boundedness comes in and says, “Hey, I’m a risk taker, I’m aggressive, but I’m also wise enough to know that I’m going to set limits.”

One of the concepts that guides me and a lot of entrepreneurs is that you are building your successful business. So let’s dig into this concept.

Maybe you’re in a position where you are stuck in not knowing whether you should continue in something or not. I’m not necessarily talking about the big picture – for example, maybe you’ve been doing something for two years, and you’re not concerned whether or not you should continue working in that over-arching business or not.

But, every single week, you have to make a decision: “Is what I’m working on today, is the step I’m taking right now, is the book I’m reading right now, is the book I’m writing right now, is the product I’m creating right now, is the coaching program that I’m doing right now, are the things that I’m doing right now, are these things worth of continuing for another week, for another month, for another year, or not?”

Or: “If I’m doing 15 things right now, should I keep fourteen of them and drop one of them, or should I keep one of them and drop fourteen of them?”

Maybe you’re experiencing some of these emotions right now, or you’ve felt confused like this in the past. Perhaps you’ve been feeling like you’ve been spinning your wheels trying to figure this out: “Should I do this and that, should I do that or this, should I take an aggressive step, should I back up and regroup?” etc., etc.

Maybe you’re in a position where you’ve been making so many mistakes, you’ve had so many failures that you don’t trust your judgment anymore. Maybe you have a fear of failure. Or, maybe you’ve never failed before, but you have a fear of failure.

I’m going to share with you some concepts over the next few days. When you internalize these concepts, I believe that they will help you. Notice that I’m specifically saying they will help you as you use and internalize these processes. This is not a 7 step system that guarantees instant mastery if you do step 1, then do step 2, and then keep going all of the way through step 7. Instead, you’re going to make many decisions over time and you’re going to evaluate the result of those decisions. Again, you’re going to make many decisions over time and then you’re going to evaluate the result of those decisions.

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