How can an entrepreneur acquire the ability to get back up no matter what?
I like to think I'm unsinkable. But everybody thought the Titanic was unsinkable too, until it hit an iceberg. Rather than declaiming empty words, I want to describe my thought process.
Whenever I would get particularly mad at my parents as a child, I would plan to run away with my bike and a bag. Of course, I never followed through, but it begged the question: how would I react if I had no one to rely on? In other words, how would I survive, no matter the situation?
The first step is to find ways to keep your sanity (my ability to judge) intact at all times by removing stress sources: social pressure to conform, false expectactions, and success myths. Breaking out of these feedback loops from hell and overcoming our own dogmas bring the mental fortitude needed to act rather than react. When I feel overwhelmed, I just get back to the basics: I stop pressuring myself, relax, have fun, and remember why I was so excited about working on my current objectives in the first place. That's why I never burned out or felt depressed in more than two years of entrepreneurship: I have my own mental defense mechanisms.
The rest is a matter of habits.
You just need to focus on one thing to survive: your own homeostasis. A shelter and clothes to protect yourself from the weather, and food to maintain your energy levels. As long as you keep your expenses low and save money, you can always find a way to eat and have a roof above your head for little money. I made The Co-Writers while staying in Malaysia, living in a capsule hostel for $200 per month and eating cheap (but delicious) street food. When money is out of the equation, you are free of doing whatever you want with your time.
An infinite runway means you can focus on developing mastery: the ability to both learn hard things fast and execute at a high level of speed and quality. As long as you focus on mastery, you'll grow your skills and generate more opportunities. In 2020 so far, writing is my number one source of income, and I keep getting new work. The better I am at writing, the more leverage I acquire to make money. I've been going at it for just a little more than a year, but I'm already getting my investment back, with interests.
Last but not least, I know I can make friends no matter where I am. I don't mind being alone, but I never have to feel lonely if I choose to. When there are friends, there is hope.
Those are the four reasons why I think I can bounce off any situation, even if my ventures result in failure. There is but one thing that could prevent me from getting back up again, and that is death. But that's the way it is for everyone, so why should I be preoccupied by it?