Every entrepreneur experiences adversity at some point in their journey, and it’s often hard to face. However, avoiding these moments of conflict can ultimately be detrimental to your business: If you walk on eggshells and live in fear of challenging situations, you may never get where you want to be.
The only way to defeat adversity is to tackle it head-on. To find out what works, we asked a panel of Young Entrepreneur Council members the following question:
What is the best way to face, and then overcome, adversity?
Here’s what they had to say.
1. Surround Yourself With Positivity
The first thing you need to bear in mind when faced with adversity is that it will pass. While it might not seem easy, approach all that you do with positivity. Surround yourself with people who are positive in nature and steer clear of those who tend to get you down. Overcoming adversity might seem challenging, but a supportive team can help make the process considerably easier.
2. Remember Hard Times
Chances are you’ve faced adversity more than once in your life. At the time it seemed like the biggest challenge in the world, but guess what? You got through it and here you are today. When faced with another situation that you need to defeat and overcome, remember the tools from the first time you overcome a challenge. Then, face it with positivity and bravery.
3. Chart an Adaptable Path to Your End Goal
Grit and tenacity are musts to achieve long-term goals. Remember, Darwin remarked on the “survival of the most able to adapt,” not the fittest! As an entrepreneur, you’ll be presented with ever-changing obstacles. Don’t get discouraged: Chart your end-goal and break it down into daily bite-sized tasks that can be adapted. If you act on those small to-dos daily, you’ll be well on your way.
4. Think of What You’ll Learn From This
Adversity is practice; life is the game. It should be treated as a challenge, not an end or roadblock. When a wall comes crashing down in front of you, go boldly crushing right through it. You should think, “This is making me stronger. This is making me smarter. This is making me great.” You can either accept the challenge or quit, so train your mind to crave a challenge. How we react defines us.
– Taylor Irwin, Rocky Mountain Car Wash
5. Write in a Journal
A good way to overcome adversity is to write your thoughts down in a journal every day. Writing down your feelings, thoughts, and emotions will help you reflect on them better and help you to better understand your current situation. Years later, you can look back on your written thoughts and see how far you’ve come and how you’ve developed.
6. Invest in Personal Development
We all face challenges and adversity but instead of giving up, you should invest in personal development to grow into a wiser and stronger person. Get a library card and check out some self-help books, take some online courses to boost your skills and your confidence, or just listen to a podcast that offers great advice on issues and topics that are similar to what you’re dealing with.
– John Turner, SeedProd LLC
7. Get Some Space to Think
Take a step back and give yourself some space to evaluate. A fresh look at the problem can result in a new solution that wasn’t seen before. A walk around the block, 10 minutes of meditation or a good night of sleep can bring a new perspective.
8. Focus On Micro-KPIs
When you set micro-KPIs, you are creating a pathway to achieve major results. Adversity is temporary and if you can let that sink in and focus on the micro-goals at hand, you’ll be able to achieve anything you set your mind to. When you start changing and transforming, your adversity may see this as a threat, so keep the focus on you. Don’t pay attention to others and you create your own success.
9. Question Everything
Doubt allows you to pivot and question. If you question everything, you get answers. And if you have answers for a lot of things, you will be able to overcome anything. To overcome adversity, you need to listen more than you talk. Then, talk to yourself. Doubt and ask those questions to yourself. The answers will come to life by themselves.
10. Remember That There Is Always A Solution
It doesn’t matter what brick wall is put in front of me; there’s a way to knock it down. I see many start a business and quit because they hit a couple road bumps. Obviously, they were not cut out to be an entrepreneur. Any successful business owner knows you need to barrel right through any problems that arise. There is always a solution. You just need to stay the course and believe in yourself.
11. Practice Self-Compassion
Showing self-compassion is key to finding inner strength to overcome adversity. You can show self-compassion in several ways. First, replace harsh self-criticism with gentler words toward yourself. Second, acknowledge that you are not alone in failure. Indeed, adversity is a universal experience. Lastly, show self-compassion by acknowledging your negative emotions and without focusing on them.
– Shu Saito, Godai Soaps
12. Embrace Failure And Adversity
We will all experience failure and adversity in our lives. As an entrepreneur, the best way that I’ve learned how to overcome adversity is by embracing and accepting it. This helps me understand the situation, why I am facing the challenge or problem, and the best way to overcome it.