Launching and running a successful business takes focus and dedication. As founders and business owners, we live and breathe our passion. Everything we do is aimed toward manifesting our goals. But sometimes things don’t go as planned, and we experience major dips. Success is not linear. Inevitably, income, revenue streams, and client retention fluctuate. In the midst of these highs and lows, how we manage ourselves and our business often dictate our growth. Our definition of success and failure often determines how we manage changes. Think about these questions
- Do we just associate success with money?
- How many lives do we positively touch (especially if we run non-profits or cause-based businesses)?
- How many employees do we sustain?
- What are our goals for personal growth?
Whatever the change, it can intensely affect our self-worth. When things aren’t going our way, we can dip into destructive mindsets, or, on the flip side, when things are going well, we can get overly excited. This fluctuation is natural, but it’s on us to learn how to balance and take stock of our emotional rollercoaster as entrepreneurs.
As women, we often criticize ourselves. For many, the “I’m not doing enough” tape is on repeat, and that negativity can tremendously limit our success.
Jen Du, CEO of Before Elixir, knows the importance of this. “My definition of success is multifaceted and evolving as I and my business grow. Obviously, I have revenue goals for my company, and a target number of stores I’d like Before Elixir to be in every year. I want Before Elixir to be known as the definitive hangover and flush prevention drink,” Jen says. But it’s her personal meters of success that keeps her in the game when facing constant challenges. She asks herself, “Am I farther along than I was last month, last year? Am I happier and more fulfilled?” If the answer is yes, then she knows she’s moving in the right direction. This is what helps her stay focused during those peaks and valleys.
Focusing on the long term helps Jen avoid getting too charged when she fails or succeeds. “When we get a negative review, my world doesn’t crumble, and when I get a huge magazine article published about Before Elixir, I don’t jump for joy. I just acknowledge it and keep my eyes on the prize because I know I’m in it for the long haul. I’m running a marathon, not a sprint.”