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Resilience is a Myth. 3 Insights For Entrepreneurs Who've Recently Suffered a Setback

Trevor O'Hara
2 min read

I don't know about you, but I'm tired of being "resilient." Just when I thought I was resilienT enough and it was safe to go back into the water, Dr. Fate deals another blow. Whaaat? Again?

You know how the saying goes: the only way to deal with uncertainty in these times of change is to go out and develop some resilience.

Yeah right. That's like saying to your child:   "hey kiddo, the only way to learn how to ride your bike is to fall off your bike."

As we all know, life's more complex than that.

Resilience is NOT just about making us stronger...

Here's an example. I love mountaineering and ice climbing. I've never been to Everest, but we assume that Everest mountaineers are resilient enough to get to the top.

A "resilient" mountaineer is ready to make a final push for the summit. But then his sherpa tells him they need to turn back as a storm is closing in.

The "resilient" mountaineer responds, "I'm tough enough to get through this storm," and decides to push through. but Mother Nature kills him.

In mountaineering circles, we call this "summit fever". It's a killer!

We all experience summit fever as entrepreneurs! We know we should cut our losses and take time out. But we continue to waste time, money, and effort on something that sooner or later may actually do us harm. That's not resilience. That's blindness.

Here are 3 mindset changes the next time your business has served you a curveball:

#1: Resilience IS NOT struggle and hard work: The next time you find yourself bragging about how hard you're working, maybe it's a sign that your business is struggling.

Tip #2: Resilience IS accepting failure: Instead of saying "failure is not an option", think about the time (and mental health) you may save by acknowledging failure. You'll live to fight another day.

Tip #3: Resilience IS NOT about "bouncing back": When you're hit by a setback, it fundamentally changes and reshapes you. Use the experience to learn and reshape yourself. But forget "bouncing back". The past is the past.

Resilience is the mistaken belief that you're set up to weather the struggle and pain of any life storm. But mother nature has other plans. Randomness is everywhere and you can't control the future, so you just can't be prepared for everything.

**...it's about dealing with UNCERTAINTY!

Follow me on Twitter where I'll be releasing the second part of this post shortly, explaining what you should be doing instead.