3 Lessons to learn from Entrepreneurs

First off, I am not an entrepreneur. I don’t know if I can be one. I have these really great ideas sometimes, but I also have a problem with execution so I feed them to my many entrepreneur friends.

I have realised that with them, there’s a trend. I see a pattern in the way they think, make decisions and act, and I have come to learn a lot from what I like to call their “entrepreneurial culture”.

So, here are three interesting things I have learnt from entrepreneurial culture and friends.

#1: Don’t say “Impossible”

Don’t even think it. Seriously, these guys only see possibility. WHETHER a problem can be solved is not a question for them, because it always can. In fact, when something comes up, the real question is HOW it can be solved.

This is a very interesting approach to life and work, this possiblity thinking. No, I’m not about to get into all that hype about The Laws of Thought and Attraction.

This doesn’t mean that stuff won’t be hard. In fact, for emphasis, sometimes things WILL be really HARD. But what if we didn’t label as ‘impossible’ everything that was difficult for us in our lives and work?

If you can think it, you can do it!

Just thinking that something is possible already increases your chances at succeeding at it!

#2: Relationships, Relationships!

It’s all about relationships for them. An entrepreneur walks into a room of people and instead seeing human beings, they see potential clients, customers, partners, investors, volunteers, spouses 😏 etc. It’s as though these labels are tatooed on foreheads. They are always meeting new people, networking, creating and sustaining relationships.

This is as important for everyone. People add value to us. We’re either teaching them or learning from them and either way, value added! Plus, there’ll be somebody who knows somebody who knows somebody who can help you with that job, opportunity, partner or client you’re looking for.

This is not about strengthening ties with your family and friends. By all means do. But when you go somewhere and meet people, create relationships! Forget about being introverted or shy.

TIP: Just count to five, walk up to someone, introduce yourself and ask about them too. How hard can it be?


#3: “Like entrepreneur, like business”

This one is about behaviour, character, habits. 

If an entrepreneur is always late for everything, it spills over into their team and eventually the business. They’ll hardly meet deadlines, always deliver late to clients, hardly achieve their goals on time. Worst case scenario, the business will be behind on debts and close down.

Yep, it’s that serious. And true.

The good thing is, this stuff is vice versa. Good habits, good output.

So, it’s important to imtrospect and deal with bad habits that could sabotage our relationships, work, and our lives in general. I won’t start naming a list of bad habits, but you know, tardiness is something a lot of us fight with. 

Just check, and deal with them appropriately. Get help from friends or even professionals if you need to. 

In essence, 3 things you should remember;

  • Possibility thinking
  • Relationships
  • Habits!

Cheers!

About Me

This story is about me. 

About the real me, the “now” me.

The me standing here, in this place, at this time, T.
This is not about the ‘me’ ten years ago

The child who wrote a poem titled “Joyfully” 

But couldn’t even tie her laces rightfully.

The girl who at age ten knew she must probably be over educated

Because some of her mates couldnt pronounce ‘Simile’

And they said the past tense of register was ‘registrated’.”
This story is not about me seven years ago

The ‘me’ who could spell N-O

But never pronounce it out loud

In fear of upsetting the crowd.
This is not about those times,

When the word ‘friend’ meant

‘Partner in low self esteem’ 

And I only wished it would mean

‘That smart, pretty, confident girl

Who leads the “big team”’.
No, this is not a story about the insecure teen.

Who couldn’t realise

That ‘me’ is precious, special 

And deserved to be treated as such 

By others, but first by me.
This is not about the naive ‘me’ 

Who believed that life 

Was only either black or white 

and no other way;

And that you couldn’t mix the black and white 

And make do with gray.
This is not a sad story,

Where ‘me’ is throwing a pity party.

Soliciting your nods, head shakes 

And occasional tears, 

Filling your ears with junk about my fears.
This story is about me. 

About the real me, the “now” me.

The ‘me’ standing here, in this place, at this time, T.
The ‘me’ who is content to not be her, 

Content to not have had his life, 

Her family, his past, 

The ‘me’ with smiles that finally last.

This story is about the ‘me’ 

Who has stopped looking for the easy way, 

For excuses and reasons

But who chooses every day

To own her flaws, learn her lessons.

To not apologise for her convictions.
This is about me 

Who knows the two definitions of fear: 

Forget everything and run or 

Face everything and rise

And who, of the two, chooses the latter, 

Because ‘rising’, 

It’s my only choice in the matter.

This is about ‘me’ who understands 

That it might not have been my choice to fall,

But as for whether I stand or not, I’m the one to make that call.
This is about a girl who knows what she’s fighting for,

Who knows she has to lose some battles in order to win the war. 

About a girl who’s not afraid to throw wide open the gates of her heart, because “hey, the right people have the keys to the door and the rest of you can feel at home in the yard.”
This is about the girl who will not let shards of broken heart, tamper with the lens.

Through which her world comes into focus, 

The lens that converges on the sense in all the nonsense.

The girl who aspires to be the friend Solomon was talking about.

The friend who will always be there with or without.
This story is about the ‘me’ who has grown, 

Crept, walked, run and then flown.

The ‘me’ who embraces challenges

Who’s excited about changes

The me who, even when life’s shade is mellow

Always seeks amidst the dim to find her yellow.
This is about me, 

The she with brown skin

With black eyes and thick rims

You know, short sight but big dreams

The girl who’s in love with words and keen

About sweetly blending them in sound, 

And about how the artist within is found,

The ‘me’ who knows her past, her history.

And gladly wants to share the journey’s story..
A story of phases, of metamorphosis

A story for those who have thought that for them there isn’t a before and an  after

Or that in all their bleakness, there couldn’t be any laughter.

If this is you and you live in this perpetual night

My story is for you to see

That if you can see the darkness, then there’s a flicker of light.

Faint as it may be now, it still has the potential to shine bright.

Spoken word performance of this poem is coming up soooon!

I spoke the Truth…

In fact, ‘we’ spoke the truth.
We said everything, as it happened, and we were at peace. We knew that our truth would be enough.

Then he came and told all kinds of lies and they believed him. He twisted our truth and made us look like the liars.
Because our truth was so simple yet unbelievable. And his lies, they were numerous. 

It did not matter how much we cried. They said tears were not a proof of honesty. If anything, they were meant for camouflage. When we kept silent, they said it was because we had run out of ‘lies’ to tell. When we spoke, they said ‘here come the lies again…’

We got hurt and bitter, and we wanted to fight. We wanted to beat them up and break the spell he had put on them. But we were small and they were big; age wise, size wise, everything wise.

So we just let go. We prayed for one another and we trusted that God would make them see the truth. Our truth.

We will not give them permission to hurt us anymore. Let them talk. Let them judge. But our hearts will not be shaken, we’ll keep our peace.
They may throw us out. They may not. I don’t know and I don’t care.

I know only one little thing:
We spoke the truth, ALL of it.

Two Truths I’ve learned about Singleness

1. Single means ‘Whole’

To me, Singleness is not just that period of time when you’re not in a relationship. 

It is the time when you work at being whole, body and soul. It is the time you have to introspect, evaluate yourself and get better at being you. It is the time when you rid your mind of all the junk from past relationships, be they yours or others’. It is the time you get to figure out your uniqueness; who you’ll be and what it is you’d be bringing into the next relationship. It is the time to eat healthy, keep fit, develop self discipline, solid character and good habits. The time to learn and master independence and interdependence. It is the time to really love yourself so that you can eventually be able to really love someone else, and teach them how to best love you.

2. Singleness = ‘Purity’

You might want to call it ‘Abstinence’. 

I personally believe that if you’re single, then be single. Because in giving yourself to different people here and there, they each get a part of you, and by the time you’re giving yourself to the one, you’re no longer giving a complete version of you. 

 Note to singles:

Singleness is NOT synonymous to Loneliness. You have family, friends, colleagues. Enjoy these relationships as much as you can. Add value, make a difference. The ‘love of your life’ will always come.

The Things They Carry

So I’m writing my first story; the first one I’m determined to finish, and now I’m at the character profiling stage. Yay!

The most important thing I’ve learned about creating good characters is making them relatable. As such I need to ask these questions about my main characters:

-Can they exist in real life?

-Can I relate to their goals and motivations?

-Do I emphathise with them? Am I rooting for them to achieve those goals in spite of the odds?

If I can answer YES to all these questions, then I’m on the right path to having a great character.

But here’s one other interesting question I found to be essential in creating great characters.

-What do they carry?

I had to answer this question literally. What do they carry on their person? In their purses? Wallets? Pockets?

I realised that the things people carry say volumes about who they are, without the writer having to spell it out. For example, I always carry an umbrella and a shawl in my bag no matter the season or weather condition. I believe that says I always want to be prepared for the unexpected. It shows that I’m a planner and I always have a plan B; I can get as far as Plan E. It also shows that I am cautious and can also be very pessimistic. 

I could go on and on just with the umbrella and shawl but you get the point.

The things they carry

Even little things such as a lighter, green lipstick, or an old faded note, have big things to say about those who carry them.

Quote: Tell me what your character carries and I will tell you who they are.  – Glory Mafor 😉

Food for thought: What do you carry and what does it say about you?