Startup life is hard. You have to get over a lot of bumps to succeed, and keeping the motivation up can be a struggle. But if you identify with even one of points below, it means you are not doing as bad as you think.
1. You are managing your expectations
There isn’t a lack of inspirational stories about overnight successes out there. They might be fun to read but they do nothing for your motivational levels when you are struggling with your own business. However, if you are managing to (somewhat) ignore the wunderkind stories and focus on your work, you are doing better than many entrepreneurs.
2. You have at least one paying customer
Many companies, especially in tech startups, are chasing investors instead of clients. Granted, sometimes an investment is necessary to put a product on the market, but once that’s done – getting customers should be in focus. Customers don’t only bring in income but also good reputation.
3. You are working with like-minded people
Working with or around people who are going through the same processes as you are is
extremely important. They can help you get a new perspective, bounce ideas, or just validate the issues you are dealing with. It does not matter if you have an amazing co-founder, assistant, or just a group of other entrepreneurs you meet regularly. Any support goes a long way.
4. You know when to take a break
The startup culture has glorified long days at the office, lack of sleep, and constant partying. But such lifestyle can have horrible effects on your business. A study published by the researchers at the University of Turku showed that lack of sleep significantly reduces the ability to think critically. It also impairs attention, alertness, concentration, reasoning, and problem-solving.
5. You are realistic about your own product
Once you’ve created something, be it a product or a service, it’s more than okay to be proud. However, many entrepreneurs fall into the trap of perfection where they are not seeing the need for improvements. That is a dangerous path. Ultimately, what you need is a balance between perfect and good enough.
6. You understand that to make money you need to spend it
Many entrepreneurs have the misconception that they should keep the costs as low as possible in order for the business to survive. While that might be true for office decor and fancy business cards, the same does not apply to areas such as marketing, sales, or legal services. As Jay Goltz stated in his New York Times article, “There is nothing more expensive than a cheap lawyer or accountant.”