Every leader and entrepreneur has bad days. In the beginning it was harder for me because I had less people I knew going through what I had been going through. I also had less experience dealing with setbacks or doubts or feelings of failure. The worst days were getting to the end of the work day and realizing I had done zero, absolutely nothing, zilch. It was also hard to be “ON” all the time and it was hard to project success as defined by other people. For most in the corporate world, I still felt judged by them because they didn’t ‘get it’, in terms of why I left. But most importantly, I couldn’t sell it. But I know better now.
I started telling people about all the crappy days I wasted a few years into my small business journey because it was honest and authentic. There was a speaking event in 2011 where we took a Q&A and someone asked how to deal with ‘dark days’. I decided to be brutally honest. It was the first time I admitted how many bad days I actually had, what I actually did those days (or how little I did) and how I felt through it all. It was an epiphany moment to do so. The audience member and my fellow speakers were grateful for allowing that tough question turn into a powerful moment. The moment I embraced my vulnerability and asked for help was the moment I saw the goodness of people and realized so many others who have felt the way I have. I felt again connected to my own symphony (or tribe as some call it).
Fear is normal, but it can motivate. Doubt, however, is the biggest obstacle to every leaders’ and entrepreneurs’ growth. It can’t motivate. It makes you feel lost. But you can fight doubt by leveraging your support network. You can find ways to cope or manage. You can always read your Why, Vision and Mission aloud and celebrate the glorious path of where you are. Best of all, you can always start each day with something new, fresh and better. We all have dark days, but every new day begins with light.