Once you’ve done the mental work, there comes a point you have to throw yourself into action and put your heart on the line. – Phil Jackson

People who aren’t runners assume that they can’t perform at the level of trained marathoners. New entrepreneurs do look at experienced entrepreneurs and assume that they can perform at that level.

Experienced entrepreneurs perform at the level they do because they have years of training. We’ve fallen into enough holes to know how to climb out of them, we’ve learned how to pace ourselves for the marathon, and we have successful environments that keep us rolling when times get tough.

I’ve done a lot of things in my life, and few things have been more full-contact than being an entrepreneur. It tests your emotional resolve. It changes your social networks. It strips away the security you once had in a steady, predictable paycheck. You have to learn to embrace uncertainty and deal with what comes.

And that’s when times are good.

When times are bad, you will want to quit. You’ll start fantasizing about getting a job, showing up, doing what you’re told, and going home to have some peace and tube time. You’ll hate the plans, projections, gambles, and opportunity-making that you have to do every day.

Experienced entrepreneurs know this and separate how they feel from what they’ll do. They know that the downs are as much a part of the life as the ups, and the fact that they stick through the downs is what makes them successful.

Most experienced entrepreneurs cover up their mistakes so that you don’t see them anymore. On the outside, it looks like everything they do is perfect, but you don’t see the tucking and rolling that happens behind the scenes. They’ve learned not to let minor missteps and obstacles sap their energy and confidence — again, it’s a matter of emotional fortitude and resolve.

Rather than reading this post and seeing what you lack, I hope you’re looking at it for what it is — a reminder that success requires stamina, and you get stamina by training and experience.

You get out there and see what works and what doesn’t.

You get up and take care of your people.

You tuck, roll, and keep moving.

You might be able to run with your guru in time, but, for today, focus on running at your own rate. That’s the only way you’ll get there.

Lace up and get going.

PS: Yes, it’s worth it.

Originally published at productiveflourishing.com


  • Charlie Gilkey

    Author, Speaker, Business Strategist, Coach

    Charlie Gilkey helps people start finish the stuff that matters. He's the founder of Productive Flourishing, author of the forthcoming Start Finishing and The Small Business Lifecycle, and host of the Productive Flourishing podcast. Prior to starting Productive Flourishing, Charlie was a Joint Force Military Logistics Coordinator while simultaneously pursuing a PhD in Philosophy. He lives with his wife, Angela, in Portland, Oregon.