When it comes to the sometimes ruthless, sometimes scary world of business, mental toughness is vitally important. Entrepreneurship is all about taking an idea and travelling boldly into the unknown with it. You need unshakeable confidence, resilience in the face of the unexpected and the ability to handle pressure.
At its best, the business world is a wonderful realm filled with opportunity and innovation. At its worst, it’s a frightening viper pit. It’s easy to be confident and strong when everything’s going well, but the truly successful need to be mentally resilient even when things don’t go their way.
If you’re in the world of entrepreneurship and business, or thinking of jumping in, here are a few tips to improving your mental toughness.
How many times a day do you hear people complain? How many complaints a day do you think people make? It’s a common way to vent frustration, and it’s not always verbal. You can “mentally complain” as well, internally focusing on everything that isn’t going exactly how you want it to.
But if you’re able to feel grateful rather than sorry for yourself, several useful things happen to your mental state:
First, you’ll feel more energetic. Complaining and feeling negative energy is exhausting – it saps your willpower and your drive. Second, you’ll stay focused on what you DO have, allowing you to make better decisions about how to proceed. And third, you’ll simply feel better. Stress has physiological implications, so expressing gratitude is simply good for your health.
Part of mental toughness is acknowledging that some things simply lie outside of our control. We have a degree of influence over our personal worlds, but that’s it. Embracing change is about accepting those things when they affect us, rather than denying or resisting them.
Eckhart Tolle, famous spiritual teacher, says: “If you find your here and now intolerable and it makes you unhappy, you have three options: Remove yourself from the situation, change it, or accept it totally.” Acceptance means wasting no time complaining or trying to cheat around a situation, but simply facing it head on.
Expect, accept and embrace change. Your market or industry can change at any time, so it pays to be an expert at handling those changes and shifting direction when necessary.
Every failure is an opportunity to learn. Every event that occurs that you define as a failure is a chance to head into the future with more skills and more experience. The catch is, failures only serve you if you have the right attitude towards them.
Success is never immediate. Edison failed to create the light bulb 1,000 times. Each time, he became more experience and skilled. Now, on a daily basis, almost everyone on Earth sees his influence on history.
The mentally tough treat any failure as one step closer to their ultimate outcome.