What It Really Takes To Win In Business : Under30CEO What It Really Takes To Win In Business : Under30CEO
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What It Really Takes To Win In Business

| October 19, 2012 | 12 Comments

By now you’re probably familiar with the fact that only 10% of entrepreneurs achieve business success.

The good news is that there’s really only one reason for this. The reason is: They give up before they achieve success!  But why do 90% of entrepreneurs just give up during the first three years of their start-up?

Well, because starting a business isn’t always easy. Sometimes it can take a year, two, or three until you’re truly up and running…until you’re truly “successful.” And most people don’t have the mental stamina to undergo those first few years of delayed gratification and intense hard work…hence the meager 10% success rate.

Thankfully, 99% of entrepreneurial success is purely mental (ie: not giving up), which means you can simply train and condition your mind to be stronger…so you don’t just give up right before achieving your success.

Here are 3 powerful ways to ensure your mental strength and stamina so you persist (even when the going gets tough) and ultimately achieve the real entrepreneurial success you deserve:

1 – Practice Rational Optimism. Guess what? Optimism has a curvilinear relationship with performance. This means the more optimistic you feel, the better you perform (in anything). However, if you’re too optimistic or irrationally optimistic your levels of performance actually start to decrease.

That’s because when you’re overly optimistic you might not even notice potentially damaging-to-your-business information…which means you don’t strategically address it. Entrepreneurs especially need to watch out for this because studies show that they tend to be more optimistic than non-entrepreneurs to begin with. After all, do you know how many people consider the idea of starting a business outright impossible? …That’s the point.

On the flip side, when you’re not feeling optimistic enough, you’re not even motivated to act because all you see are problems (that often seem bigger than they really are).

So, what’s an incredibly vital key to entrepreneurial success?

Stay rationally optimistic. This enables you to actually perceive potential challenges, problems, and setbacks as they arise, while still giving you the positivity and psychological stamina to effectively address them and grow bigger, better, and more profitable from them.

2 – Keep it honest. Believe it or not, honesty and ethics are gigantic components to business success. Your level of honesty as an entrepreneur influences everything from your corporate culture to the likelihood that you’ll receive repeat business. Studies show that one of the strongest factors to influence entrepreneurial success is actually your honesty factor and the degree to which you act ethically.

Negative values like dishonesty and saying ANYTHING just to get the sale not only harm the global marketplace but they also harm your bottom line…and often (rationally speaking), it’s only a matter of time before negative reputations catch up with business owners.

Solution: Keep your character and business values ethical and honest. Science reassuringly shows us again and again that it literally pays off to be a good person (not a martyr of course, but an honest, ethical, decent person). Now that’s worth millions!

3- Remember, stress and creativity don’t mingle well. As an entrepreneur you probably face tons of stress all the time. Our best advice: don’t sweat ANY of it. Why? Because the more stressed out you feel the less equipped you are to actually come up with creative solutions to the issues stressing you and your business in the first place.

The truth is that once your brain gets stressed it causes a chemical reaction that makes it nearly impossible for you to be creative. This means the more you’re stressed out (a lot or a little), the less you’ll be able to get the competitive, creative edge you need to thrive and succeed and business.

Best advice: Take it easy! Be Rationally Optimistic! Anytime you face a potential stressor in business, ask yourself: What’s beneficial about this for me / my organization? How can we use this to grow and progress ahead? What awesome benefit has this given us that we wouldn’t have received otherwise? These questions get your creative juices flowing in the direction of growth and progress.

About the authors: Cece Suwal and Mark Brener are coauthors of the national bestseller, A Guide To Your Supreme Powerand cofounders of The One World Initiative, where you can use Rational Optimism to discover your path to money, power, love, success, life purpose, and meaning. Take their free-mini course here. They inspire and guide tons of people each week on how to be successful.

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Category: Personal Branding, Startup Advice

  • http://twitter.com/7MEntrepreneur Joe Cassandra

    Love how you differentiate between being optimistic ( which is good in itself) and being rational…put together it creates creativity.. Cheers!

  • http://twitter.com/DanaLeavy Dana Leavy-Detrick

    The connection between work-related stress and creativity is interesting. To think that it actually blocks the ability to drive creative solutions on a physiological level is reason enough to let go of the worries and fears. Easier said than done, but normalizing it at least makes it easier.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mark-Brener-Cecil-Suwal/100001609061071 Mark Brener Cecil Suwal

    Thanks Joe. Its great to be positive but we dont want to delude ourselves either!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mark-Brener-Cecil-Suwal/100001609061071 Mark Brener Cecil Suwal

    Yes…A great way to let go of so many stressful (creativity-blocking) things is to just ask yourself: Will this really matter in a year? As you might expect, you’ll find yourself experiencing at least 90% LESS stress than before. Cheers!

  • https://www.bucketlistly.com/ Pete Rojwongsuriya

    Now, those are some interesting advices. Most articles I read usually want entrepreneurs to be more optimistic. This article on the other hand support this theory but with a little twist. Be rationally optimistic. I guess this applies to almost everything in the world. No more, no less is the way to go. More confident = too cocky, less confident = too shy, moderate confident is the best way to go. :)

    Thanks for sharing all these interesting tips, Cece and Mark.

  • http://twitter.com/ramoncacho Ramón Cacho

    Great post

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mark-Brener-Cecil-Suwal/100001609061071 Mark Brener Cecil Suwal

    You’re welcome Pete. Glad you found it useful!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mark-Brener-Cecil-Suwal/100001609061071 Mark Brener Cecil Suwal


  • http://twitter.com/investormaniacs InvestorMania

    “Remember, stress and creativity don’t mingle well. As
    an entrepreneur you probably face tons of stress all the time. Our best
    advice: don’t sweat ANY of it. Why? Because the more stressed out you
    feel the less equipped you are to actually come up with creative
    solutions to the issues stressing you and your business in the first

    I really disagree with this. I see so many entrepreneurs get walked all over because of this outlook/attitude. You can be calm and stress free, just remember your competitor is stressed out and has the attitude that things are never good enough. Those are the winners in business not the “ill deal with it later” attitude.

    Best advice: Take it easy!

    What? This is dangerous advice. You should never be satisfied until you reach your goal, you should be chasing it 24/7, there is no room for people taking it easy, they get swallowed by the stressed out people always pushing to win.
    It generally doesn’t take creativity to solve problems, just hard work or trying many different things, its not rocket science yet many try to make it harder than it has to be.

    Stress= People that execute
    Creativity=5 wantrepreneurs at strarbucks in silicon valley talking about their social network which will help grandmothers rekindle their relationship with their grandsons. ( i want 5% on anyone that builds that now)

    I believe stress is a great driver of many entrepreneurs and find it difficult to work with “laxed” people as they take too long to do things and/or do not push as hard as they could.

    Remember Andrew S. Grove who during his tenure as CEO, Grove oversaw an increase in Intel’s stock value by 2,400%, making it one of the world’s most valuable companies——

    The name of his book is “Only the Paranoid Survive”

  • http://www.callboxinc.co.uk/ Hannah Hamilton

    I really like the way you emphasize optimism in your article. For me, success only comes to those who perceive it well. Begin in the end of the mind as what they say. :)

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  • MJGottlieb

    Gr8 post Cece and Mark. I think the third point is definitely the most difficult stumbling block as though overcoming stress is one of the most important skills to have, it is perhaps the most difficult of all to master. I also think that your reasoning why most entrepreneurs don’t make it is spot on. As they say, the only time we fail is when we give up! Again, great, resourceful post. Best- MJ