The Critic

The Critic by Eric Corl, Review Complaint

In a recent Medium post, I wrote about the climate of entrepreneurship and the very present critic. Access to profiteer websites, acting as a soapbox, makes it easier than ever to break a small business. I have seen entrepreneurs sell their companies because they simply don’t want to deal with the peanut gallery anymore.

I wasn’t raised by parents that saw the world in black and white. Learn more about my story here. As an adult, I am grateful for that because I don’t either. I have come to realize that I approach each situation differently because of knowing that there is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ answer. You do what you can with what you have.

Things need to be accomplished. Period.

There are better and worse ways of doing things. Some that are more and less efficient. Some that heed the results you want and some that don’t. But that’s ok.

Enter the Monday morning quarterback. Defined as: Someone who criticizes others after something has happened by saying that they should have dealt with it differently, although the people involved could not have known what would happen.

Proudly standing on their soapbox, the critic plays Monday morning quarterback. Why should their opinion hold any weight? It shouldn’t. They weren’t there during your past lessons and they won’t be there to help you in the future…

Being an entrepreneur takes MORE. More mental, physical, emotional, financial and every other ‘-ial‘ than 99% of the population is willing to give. Thinking outside of the proverbial box is what got you to entrepreneurship in the first place. When you are paving the way for something new and never seen before, not even you know what lies ahead. And certainly not the critic.

No one, and I truly mean NO ONE, knows the journey you’ve been on with your business. Simply because they haven’t built what you have. They haven’t learned the most important things that you have… what doesn’t work.

The errors, inefficiencies, lack of results and self-admitted mistakes… they hurt. But they are YOURS.

Drown out the critics and keep cranking.

10 Tips to Reduce Burnout

Burnout is a real and extinguishing force you can face as a high performer. As a veteran entrepreneur, it's something I've dealt with a few times in my career. Here are ten ways you can dramatically reduce your chances of burnout and will help you get back to "normal" quickly if you're currently in the burnout lull.

  1. Exercise - Exercising is one of the most powerful ways to prevent and overcome burnout. The downside? You usually don't feel like doing it when you're in the burnout lull. Start by signing up for a gym membership and getting an accountability partner. Any exercise is better than none, and while a rigorous workout is best, even a 20 minute walk a day can help you beat burnout.

  2. Drink Lots of Water - Our bodies are made up of more than 70% water. If you're tired, hydration is more than likely one of the factors at play. The first thing you drink when you wake up in the morning and before you go to bed should be a large glass of water.

  3. Practice Gratitude - Ideally during exercise, go through your mind about all of the things you are grateful for. Having a hard time? Start with the fact that you're alive. That you can see, feel, touch, etc. It is amazingly effective and has been shown to have tremendous psychological benefits.

  4. Socialize - The last thing you should do when you are facing or in burnout is to isolate. It's not a mentally healthy path. Socializing can boost your physical, mental, and emotional health. Restricted by your location to visit with family and friends? Pick up the phone or facetime at least once a day to build your relationships. It will boost your life and those you connect with.

  5. Practice Mindfulness - Take small breaks throughout the day to be mindful of how you are feeling. It's being fully conscious of how you are feeling mentally and physically, and not just letting the day run you. Many people use this as a form of therapy. For some, this is saying a prayer. For others, it's quietly thinking while walking.

  6. Create a Consistent Schedule - Often times when I talk to high performers who face burnout, their schedules involve late nights and inconsistent schedules. Get a schedule that consistently works for you. Create small consistencies to give your day shape and structure. It can be as simple as the first few things you do in the day such as getting coffee, reading, and exercising. It will help create a foundation for you to build from and provide consistency in the midst of chaos.

  7. Get 8 Hours of Sleep - Sleep is critical to how our bodies and minds function over the long run. Yes, there are people that can sleep only 4 hours a night. Unless you are fully optimized both mentally and physically, it's a recipe for disaster. Sleep deficiency can lead to a host of mental and physical issues in the long run.

  8. Eat Well - We put premium gasoline in our cars to help them run their best and increase longevity, yet we often settle for less than premium fuel in our bodies. Eat clean, healthy foods, and you'll see a boost in your mental and physical performance.

  9. Take Time to Rest - Working 7 days a week for 18 hour days can only last so long. Take time to rest at least one day a week. On your off day/s, try to spend time with friends and family, and doing something you thoroughly enjoy. It lets your mental tank refuel.

  10. Believe In Yourself - Work on building belief in yourself. That way, even when you face obstacles, you'll have the confidence that you'll be able to get through it. Challenges, burnout, and life events are bound to happen. How you react to it is what matters, and you have within you the power to get through it and past it.

Eric Corl is a business owner and nationally recognized entrepreneur based out of Columbus, Ohio.

 

10,000 Reasons Not to Start a Business

There are about 10,000 reasons not to start a business, so don’t, unless why you want to is important enough to you to do it anyway.

It’s my belief that if you read through this and are dissuaded, you should not start a business. Starting a business is not an easy endeavor. Making it successful is harder. Keeping it successful is even more difficult. It’s those that want to push forward despite all of that who have a much better chance of making it.

So, 10,000 reasons not to start a business, you say? Yes.

You’ll deal with hiring mistakes, having to fire good people, people irrationally upset, regulations, lawsuits, and more. If you’re in business long enough, you’ll see it all and that’s after you “make it”.

Prior to that, you’ll have to go through the hurdles and obstacles that face every entrepreneur. Product/Tech/Service development and market testing. Legal preparation. Making sure you are properly insured. Getting your first customers to purchase. Collecting your payments and receivables. Managing your cash flow. Iterating product changes based on customer feedback. Delays. Sweat. Heart Palpitations.

You must want it, you have to be willing to bust your ass to make it happen. You will have to be resourceful, persistent, and resilient.

If you have an external locus of control – the tendency to blame others for issues, throw in the towel now. You’ll have enough of that to deal with that if you’re that way it’s not even worth getting started.

If you have an internal locus of control – the tendency to think of what you could have done differently and learn from mistakes, you’ve got a leg up.

It will take longer. It will be harder.

You won’t make money as quickly as you think. It will be harder than you think it will be and you will face more challenges than you could have imagined. In fact, according to Inc.com, only 4 out of 100 businesses survive past 10 years.

If you understand all of that and can still push forward with a smile on your face, then starting a business might just be for you.