Grit and taking calculated risks are the essentials if you are to achieve anything notable.
Every entrepreneur’s journey starts with a story, whether an account of overcoming adversity or an anecdotal moment of inspiration found in an unlikely situation. When one digs deeper, he or she discovers that these stories have one common thread: courage.
My entrepreneurial journey began when I took a leap of faith to launch my own public relations brand. Mustering the courage to dive into the unknown wasn’t necessarily a new thing for me. I immigrated to the U.S. as a young Nepali woman to begin my higher education. To do this, I had to leave behind a family and a country torn by civil war. Looking back, I realize that this scary experience fifteen years ago prepared me for my entrepreneurial journey today. I learned that informed, calculated risks coupled with grit is the necessary combination to achieve.
How do you know if being an entrepreneur is right for you? To find out if being an entrepreneur is the right fit for you, consider these five questions:
1. Why do I want to be an entrepreneur?
Each entrepreneur’s journey is unique, even though there are certain qualities, personality traits, and values that entrepreneurs share. Therefore, the answer to this question varies greatly from person to person. Is it wealth? Independence? Social recognition? Legacy? A combination of these? Something else entirely? Take some time and answer it for yourself.
In 2003, when I was age 19, I emigrated from Kathmandu — a city of about one million — to Hesston, Kansas, a town of approximately 3,800 people. Before then, I had never heard of tornadoes, The Wizard of Oz, corn dogs or Mennonites. By the time I completed my higher education and found some success in the corporate world, I was fully integrated into American culture. But I felt like my career growth was limited. I knew deep down that if I did not take the risks now I would regret it later.
I finally collected enough courage to leave my stable (but unsatisfying) corporate job to explore the unknown and scary world of entrepreneurship. I told myself: If I was brave enough to emigrate from Nepal as a young woman, I can find the chutzpah to start my own brand and leave a footprint — a legacy — that is of value to me.
Most people have taken risks in life, taken leaps of faith in one way or another. These earlier experiences can help you find the inspiration needed to build a business from the ground up. Remember that time in the past when you were bold and dreamt big? When you jumped off a cliff and built your wings on the way down? Become that daring, audacious version of yourself again.