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So you’ve started a business.

You’re working to build a product or a service.  You know it’s a good idea.  You know it’s going to help people.  You know it’s going to provide income for you and jobs for others.

photography sunsetAnd by the way, good for you!

Being nothing but a consumer is embarrassing.  God has put in us His Image.  Part of that is His creative drive.  You’ve recognized that creating something new and useful is worth the effort.  If all we do is consume, we submit to laziness and a life which doesn’t produce anything great.  You’ve put your creative energies into starting a business.

And for those of you who have used creative energies to do other things outside of business – art, engineering, inventing, scientific research, social campaigns, planting churches, and on and on – good for you, too!  You’re not just a consumer either.  This article will contain principles for you, as well, even if the wording is geared toward entrepreneurs specifically.

So for all you creative people in business, there will come a day (and it’s probably coming soon if it hasn’t already) when you want to give up.

Please, don’t.

Our #work here is worth the effort. Click To Tweet

God wants you to create, and other people need what you have to offer.

Self-Doubt

mountaintopI know the feeling.

You’ve missed a major deadline.  The business isn’t hitting the benchmarks you’ve set.  There aren’t enough people buying your product and you see that you won’t make the next benchmark either.  You’re not gaining the popularity you expected.  Your brand is still wildly unknown.

You begin to believe you can’t do it.

There’s a shame which flows through you.  Embarrassment because of all the people who are going to say, “I told you so.”  Regret when you realized you quit your good job to pursue this passion and it’s not panning out.  Stress from all the financial pressures you now face.

How to Overcome

There is nothing wrong with feeling self-doubt.  As I said, I know the feeling, and it can dominate you.

But there are ways to overcome.  It’s a hard road, but you’re a hard person.  God made you that way.  Not everyone is made to take bold risks for the sake of an idea.

Consider these 5 ways to overcome self-doubt:

1. Remember God’s Promises

Matthew 6:25-34 promises us that He will always provide for us if we seek first His Kingdom.  So continue to do your business with honesty and integrity and for the glory of God.

1 Timothy 6:17-19 promises that those of us who have the ability should devote ourselves to good works, and if we do, then we will build up treasure for ourselves for when Christ returns.  This should tell us that our work here is worth the effort.

Matthew 25:14-30 is a parable which explains that our ability to create resources, and specifically through financial investments, if utilized properly, will give us the opportunity to “share in your Master’s happiness.”  The best part is that whether we run a large multi-billion dollar corporation or a small startup, we are only responsible to manage what we are given.

2. Remember God’s Presence

leavesAs believers in the gospel of Jesus, we have all been given the Holy Spirit.  He is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance from God.  This means that no matter what happens to our business, God will still be with us.  He prays for us in ways that we can’t even think of for ourselves.

He helps us when we are weak – which, if we’re honest, is all the time.

Colossians 3:23 informs us that we are actually working for God.  And as we work for Him, He will empower us to do right.

So no matter what difficulties we face, God is with us, and we should remember that He makes us able to do great things for Him.

3. Form Habits

The best way to get through difficult times is by doing your normal routine.  In those times, you can barely do more than that anyway.

So set it up for yourself that every day from 8am-10am you make cold-call sales.  Then from 10am-12pm, you focus on bookkeeping.  Set up a lunch appointment everyday, so that you can keep up your networking.  From 1pm-4pm, you work on production.  And so on.

Go get it with #passion and #discipline ! Click To Tweet

If you tell yourself that next week you’ll just do a whole day of specific-task-you-don’t-like, then it will be so much harder to do it.  And you probably won’t.

But with a habit, you’re just doing what you always do.  It’s much easier to handle that way.

4. Become Thick-Skinned and Hard-Headed

Most people don’t understand entrepreneurism.  They don’t understand why the risk is worth it, even if they understand the rewards.  And since they can’t (won’t) do it, then they’ll work hard to make sure that you can’t either.

So don’t let them.

Don’t make it all about “proving them wrong,” but remember that their advice is not always good advice because they don’t know the struggle.

And as far as the work itself is concerned, get stubborn about it.  If failure is an option, then you’re more likely to take the easy route when faced with great difficulty.  Let your mindset be that you will succeed no matter what happens.1

Go get it with passion and discipline!

5. Don’t Wallow in Self-Pity

I know what it’s like to put your head down on your desk and start thinking about all the ways you’re letting down your team members and employees.  Not to mention your family.

But accept the difficulty, and move on.  Nothing good can come of just sitting there thinking about how bad you are and how you can’t do it.

Put yourself to a task.  Stick to your routine.  It will keep your mind out of depression, as you’re not drowning in sorrow, and you’re being productive in the process.

No one makes it through the trench and out into #victory without battle scars. #perseverance Click To Tweet

Why it Matters

long road 2It comes down to the return of Christ.  When He comes back, we want Him to say, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.”

We don’t want Him to say, “Well… at least you’re saved.”

As we work all our creative energies out through business, we provide for ourselves and our employees.  We strengthen the economy and the well being of our community.  We offer a service or product that is useful to man and that is a good in itself.

So don’t give up.  Never give up.  No one makes it through the trench and out into victory without battle scars.

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  1. I should also be clear that I’m not saying that you can do it all by yourself.  We rely on God for everything.  Pray in all circumstances, and through God’s power succeed.

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