Entrepreneurs are made

For years, I've been struggling with what to do with my life.

For the longest time, I just didn't want to take a serious look at the question, because I was unconsciously afraid there'd be no answer. About to and a half years ago, I had no choice, but to take a look, and my fears turned out to be unfounded (surprise!).

But then after having wrestled with it and then settled on something rather vague around "spiritual entrepreneurship", I didn't want to re-open the question. I desperately wanted to avoid this frustrating feeling that I didn't know what to do with my life.

Two observations around that, before I go on.

First: It never pays to avoid feelings. They're never ever even nearly as bad as all the crap that the process of avoiding leads to.

Second: A much better question might be: How can I better let life use me?

But alas, there are just some things in life you can't fake, and it was clear from my emotions and my energy that I had to take a closer look at this, and so I did. I decided to make this a top priority, for as long as it's going to take. (One day so far.)

Let me share with you what's come up so far. Maybe you're going to have some thoughts on it.

I'm not going to claim victory and say "this is it" and just move on. I'm going to sleep on it, and consider the job not done until I feel very certain that this is it. Better take an extra day, week or month doing this job properly than jumping head-first into something to avoid feeling lost, only to discover later it was the wrong something.

The clue was actually my last blog post about whether entrepreneurs are made or born.

Well, some or born, obviously, but I strongly believe that those of us who are not born entrepreneurs (or born successful entrepreneurs), but who have a calling or a desire to be entrepreneurs, there is still hope.

In other words: Entrepreneurs are made, too.

And this actually sums up most of what I care so deeply about.

I obviously care deeply about my own chances to become a successful entrepreneur. Exhibit A.

A part of me wants to be a successful entrepreneur so that other people (mostly my father -- hi, dad!) will think well of me. But that part of me really just need to be held and loved and cared for.

Another part of me, thought, knows without a doubt that I have a lot - and I mean a lot - to share that other people need. Badly.

And the latter is a much better motivation than the first (sorry, dad!).

But it's about much more than me.

I believe that the future of our civilization depends on this. Really. Here's two reasons.

First, human beings are most productive when they're doing something they really care about. And if they're entrepreneurial by heart (doesn't have to be a business, could be something non-profit yet highly entrepreneurial), then unless they're living out that entrepreneurial dream, they're not going to be at their best, so the rest of us are missing out on the full potential of this person. Multiply that by the number of entrepreneurially inclined people on earth. It's a lot.

Second, this is in part about redefining success to be about making a positive difference (actually I want to go further than that, but let that suffice for now), rather than just making money. Making money is a necessary but not sufficient condition of success in my book, and I think a lot of the people who are not initially successful with entrepreneurship is because they have other values that are more important to them than financial success. I think a lot of the more interesting, soul-nourishing businesses come from this category.

I'm getting tired, so I'm going to end this here.




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