1. You have the time.
Yes, even you. Everyone has the same amount of time. The only difference is what you’re willing to do with yours.
If you were trapped underground and had only 24 hours’ worth of oxygen, you wouldn’t check your Twitter feed or chat with friends or spend a little me time in front of the TV. You’d dig and dig and dig.
Apply the same level of importance and urgency to what you want to accomplish and your schedule will instantly clear.
Finding the time is always a matter of how badly you want it.
2. You have the money.
As Growthink founder Dave Lavinsky says, being an entrepreneur is the art and science of accomplishing more with less — less money, less staff, less time, etc.
Face it: You will never have “enough” cash or funding. Never. If you don’t have enough capital to launch your business the way you plan, change your plan.
You can’t always control what you have, but you can control what you do with what you have.
3. You have the courage.
Every entrepreneur is scared. (Or at least should be.)
So you have a choice: let your fears hold you back or use those same fears as fuel to do whatever it takes to succeed.
Complacency is the enemy of achievement. Fortunately, you can use your fear to drive complacency away.
4. You have the right connections.
Between all the social media platforms, you can reach almost anyone besides Oprah and my personal white whale, Dave Grohl. In fact, some people are surprisingly accessible; maybe that’s one of the secrets of their success.
Of course, some people may not respond — but if they don’t, that’s probably your fault.
Start small. Start feasible. Build a foundation. A great network is like a pyramid with a wide base, not a thin vertical line that goes straight to the top.
And never forget that the more influential the person, the more besieged they are with requests. Have a good reason to connect, give before you expect to receive, and you might be surprised by the people who respond.
5. You’re never too late to any party.
Yeah, Jobs beat you to the graphical interface and mouse, but Xerox beat him. Zuckerberg wasn’t first in social media. The list goes on. Innovation is never one-and-done; some of the most successful companies are based on refining earlier ideas and innovations.
You’re only too late if you’re not willing to be better, faster, stronger, or cheaper than whoever got there first.
6. You can get people to listen to your ideas.
People will listen to anything that is entertaining, interesting, heartfelt, amusing, shocking, informative, titillating, stupid, satirical, controversial, sad, silly, sexy …
If you can’t get anyone to listen, the problem isn’t them. The problem is you.
What you want to say is irrelevant; change your message so it means something to the people you want to reach.
Then they’ll listen.
7. You have the skills. (Or can get them.)
Go to school. Read a book. (Shoot, read my book.) Talk to friends. Get a part-time job at a small business. Get a part-time job in a different industry.
Find someone who has done what you want to do and volunteer to work for free in return for the opportunity to learn.
Does that seem too hard? Like too big of a price to pay? Or just not fair? Then accept that you will never have the skills and stop complaining.
Skills and knowledge are earned, not given.
8. You have plenty of great ideas.
Dreaming up something new is really, really hard. Reacting to something that already exists is really, really easy.
Walk around and start complaining (to yourself). You’ll see tons of problems that require solutions. Those solutions are ideas. Or walk around your business and start complaining. There are tons of problems you can address.
“New” is hard to imagine. “Better” is much easier.
Most companies are built on “better,” not on “new.”
9. You can afford the risk.
A risk you take today is a risk you can recover from. Given time, you can overcome almost any setback, stumble, or failure — and emerge stronger and smarter and better prepared to succeed in the future.
If you never try, all you’ll be is regretful: When you’re old and gray and “done,” you’ll look back on your life and think, “I wonder what might have happened if I had only … ”
That’s one risk you should never take.
10. You don’t have to wait for perfection.
Plenty of people never pull the startup trigger because they’re stuck in an endless loop of “refinement.” But “striving for perfection” isn’t really the issue. Instead, they’re insecure. Or they fear criticism or rejection. Or they’re even afraid they’ll succeed.
Don’t be like them. Do your best, and then step back. If a little more work will result in a markedly better outcome, go for it. If a little more work will not make a difference anyone but you will notice, let it go.
Then you make improvements based on the feedback you get from the only people whose opinions really matter: your customers.