Success Mindsets for Aspiring Entrepreneurs

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Many entrepreneurs begin their foray into the business world as a solitary venture. Unlike an experienced CEO who has an entire team of experts at his disposal, the entrepreneur may wear many hats at once in order to get the job done.

Developing a success mindset is an excellent way to build resiliency for the ups and downs inherent in starting a new business. When you believe that things are possible and see failures as opportunities for learning, you are more likely to stick with your mission and vision even when confronted with unexpected challenges.

Success Mindset Definition

When entrepreneurs have a success mindset, also known as a growth mindset, this means that they see opportunities and possibilities more than setbacks. People who have a success mindset understand that challenges and obstacles are bound to happen along the road to success, so they do not give up when they happen. They see themselves, their business and other people as works in progress with traits and characteristics that can grow and develop with proper nurturing and education.

For example, if they make an error in scheduling, they are likely to see this as an opportunity to learn better scheduling rather than a reason to beat themselves up or quit.

Growth Mindset vs. Fixed Mindset

When entrepreneurs have a fixed mindset, this means that they believe that their qualities and traits are fixed and cannot be improved. So, if they don't meet a projection or deadline, they are likely to believe that they are not cut out for the world of business instead of understanding that they can learn and grow. They tend to believe that talent influences success more than effort, so they want to be good at something the first time around or else drop the idea altogether.

In contrast, entrepreneurs who have a growth mindset tend to believe the following:

  • Every failure is a learning opportunity.
  • You can learn, grow and get better at just about anything.
  • Challenges are an opportunity for growth. 

Developing a Success Mindset

Developing a success mindset requires time and effort, especially if you have the habit of seeing reasons why your entrepreneurial aspirations won't work rather than reasons why they will work. Business expert Hal Elrod recommends developing a morning routine of Life S.A.V.E.R.S. to change your mindset over a 30-day period:

  • S – Silence
  • A

– Affirmations * V

– Visualization E – Exercise R

– Reading * S

– Scribing (writing)

As you begin seeing entrepreneurial possibilities more than impossibilities, consider using vision boards and celebration boards to cultivate imagination and remind yourself of all you have already accomplished. Greg McKeown advocates the following principles as part of developing a success mindset:

  • Take regular down time
  • Explore possibilities
  • Embrace your power to choose
  • Do "less but better"
  • Focus on living your purpose
  • Say "no" to things that aren't essential

Transforming Your Emotions

If you find that your emotions are tripping you up on your quest to develop a success mindset, take heart and know that it is possible to transform your emotions so that it is easier to practice positive thinking. The HeartMath Institute has developed an Attitude Breathing™ technique to help relieve the worry, stress and overwhelm of the entrepreneurial journey and life in general. The following three simple steps will have you on your way:

  1. Identify what you are feeling and a positive replacement emotion or attitude.
  2. Breathe in and out through the area of your heart. 
  3. Breathe in the replacement emotion or attitude.

If you struggle to identify positive replacement emotions, a feelings chart or graphic can help you identify possible renewing emotions and find one that resonates.