Stuck Between Fear and Excitement – The Business Owner’s Daily Experience

This thought came to me during a recent conversation with a good friend.  He mentioned how he currently was in a real struggle in his business yet could see the amazing potential of what could be in the very near future.  He wasn’t fully fearful and he wasn’t fully excited.  He was somewhere in between . . . actually a rapid seesaw back and forth between the two.

This “in between” area seems to be a common hang out for many small business owners and entrepreneurs that I know and work with.  It is a place that every small business owner has visited and likely will visit, however briefly, throughout the growing life of their business.  I’ve been there myself and can relate to what an “odd” feeling it is to be gripped by fear – whether financial, time constraints, marketing, work-life balance, health, etc. – and excited by the continued growth and success of the business . . . all at the same time!  What an emotional ride.

And that is the key!  The emotion is what I see keeping business owners in the “stuck” phase.  Fear . . . excitement . . . they are emotions, and as such they can swing wildly one way or the other and cause irrationality.  I’m not saying to completely take the emotion out of being a business owner . . . no way!  That’s what makes “the ride” so fun.  I believe the key is to temper both sides, be more “even keeled,” or whatever other cliche phrase you feel fits best.  It is key to recognize the emotion, what is causing the emotion, and to address what is causing it in a level-headed and pragmatic way.  People who know me well know that a constant gripe of mine is how “the law” (politics, court decisions, etc.) is a pendulum that seems to always swing too far one way or the other – it never settles in the middle ground.  Fear and excitement are the same way.  The oddity with these emotions is that you can have both at the same time!

In addition to my faith (the most important factor!), I found several books to be helpful in guiding me through recognizing the situation and dealing with it appropriately (eventually).

Have you been there?  Know someone who has?  Have useful advice for other blog readers?  I would love to hear from you!

1 Comment

  1. Wow, great, insightful article Mike!

    It could be an emotional roller coaster! Here are two significant points that keep my business from running me:

    1. Faith (not all business people may relate) keeps me recognizing that God, not the artificial, is my provider. Hence, the fear remains at bay.

    2. “Keeping your eye on the ball.” Athletes certainly understand more than anyone. The business objectives you’ve set, should be your roadmap. Occasionally a storm washes out the road and you have to take a detour. However, you must find your way back onto the planned route quickly or risk more of the unplanned, unexpected, and unknown. That’s something that no entrepreneur willingly invites into the business plan!

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