by Chris Clothier
As human beings, we’re all prone to making excuses for ourselves. Everyone deals with insecurities and fears — it’s natural. For anyone looking to have a successful business of any kind, getting past the excuses born out of these fears and negative thoughts is a crucial first step. I am a huge believer in mindset. I truly believe the proper mindset is one of the key factors in everyone’s success, no matter the business.
In some of my previous hundred or so articles, I have stressed that real estate investing is no different than any other business. If you treat it like a hobby, then you will have the same success you would have with a hobby. However, if you treat your real estate investing as a business, then you can have the kind of success we all hope to have in business. It requires leaving the excuses behind.
If we continue to buy into our own excuses as real estate investors and professionals, we’ll never achieve our full potential. In the spirit of self-improvement, let’s deconstruct some of the most common excuses we give ourselves and others. These are the sentences that we have to leave behind if we want to be great.
6 Sentences Holding You Back from a Successful Business
“I’m too busy.”
Busy, busy, busy. We’re always busy. While it’s true that many people do have jam-packed days every day of the week, business can often became a potent excuse. It sounds valid, and we may very well have a lot on our plates, but busyness is a business killer.
For one, it creates a wall that hinders change. We aren’t willing to re-prioritize, to examine possibilities, to change to accommodate another opportunity. The real reason we claim busyness probably has more to do with insecurities or a lack of interest. Everyone on earth has the same time allotted to them — and we’re rarely as busy as we say we are.
A second reason it is a business killer is that we all make time for what we wantto make time for. Often times those wants include things that have nothing to do with business. Socializing. Workouts. Hobbies. Our schedules are often filled with extra-curricular activities, which is not a bad thing. Those things are only bad when they fill our schedule and prevent us from allotting the time needed to make our real estate businesses successful.
“I don’t have the experience.”
While not having experience in one area or another is a legitimate concern, it’s not a good reason to forgo opportunity. You don’t get experience if you don’t try in the first place. That is often where we miss the true lifecycle of business. None of us starts with experience. We all start at the same place and build from the bottom.
This excuse is often rooted in a sense of perfectionism — not in an “anything worth doing is worth doing right” way. This insidious perfectionism says that nothing is worth doing unless you get it right the first time. Truly valuable experience is built on failure and success alike.
If you lack experience, this is the time to get it. A successful business grows with and from experience. The only way to get it is to go for it.
“Now’s not a good time.”
Ask yourselves — is there ever going to be perfect timing? This excuse can be valid if you’re over capacity or burning out. It really might not be a good time personally. But in many cases, for real estate investors and professionals in any field, timing has more to do with market conditions. While yes, timing is important, it’s no reason not to start in the first place. Your timing might be off, and that’s okay. At least you’ll have done something.
“I need more money.”
This excuse can feel very real when you genuinely feel strapped for cash. Maybe your business is struggling at a low point or emergencies have drained your resources away. The issue, though, is when you say it and do nothing to solve the problem. Everyone can cut expenses and find alternative routes to find funding. For real estate investors, it may be a simple case of being an entry-level investors with tastes that exceed the price point. Most of us have to start small. Then grow.
For everyone reading this article, here is a little historical tidbit. On more than one occasion, I have had to sit my wife down and make sure she fully understood exactly how little money we had. As in, I can pay this month’s bills, but next month…? In those instances, “I need more money” never entered my thoughts as a stopping point, but only as a hurdle. I have made it over those hurdles and gone on to far exceed my own expectations each time.
Money is only an issue for those willing to allow it to stop them. Creativity, desire and willingness to take on risk and hard work are the tools that real estate investors everywhere use to get over that hurdle.
“It’s not worth it.”
This excuse demands examination. There are many real reasons as to why an opportunity may not feel worth it to you. Valid excuses would be things like:
- It doesn’t fit with my mission, brand or portfolio.
- I have weighed the risks, and it isn’t something I can wisely pursue.
- This opportunity will not further my overall business goals.
- After careful assessment, this project/property is bigger than I’m able to take on.
“It’s not worth it,” however, can be a very hollow excuse if you haven’t carefully examined your reasoning. Deep down, maybe you just don’t want to do it.
Granted, we all want projects and opportunities that excite us — but boring, bread-and-butter opportunities are a necessary part of stable growth. Don’t overlook opportunities because they aren’t “ideal.” Just because they don’t inspire your passions in the moment doesn’t mean they’ll be a waste. You never know what doors could be opened.
Remove this sentence entirely from your vocabulary!
The problem with this sentence, with this excuse, is that your words matter and they absolutely materialize. Whether you can or you cannot, saying out loud that you cannot do something — saying “I can’t” — will end all possibility of you doing it. In every case, when you say you can’t, you never even try.
You’ll find that most successful people have at one point or another doubted their innate ability to tackle the challenge set before them. We say that we’re not good enough. Someone better should handle it. When it comes to our personal and professional lives, negativity towards ourselves can be devastating to the success of a business.
You are good enough. You may fail, but you can try. If you truly believe in your business, investments and passions, don’t let naysayers, from inside your own head or critics on the outside, deter you try shooting for your goals.
How do you overcome excuses and obstacles to your professional goals?
Share your experience in the comments.
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