As I try to map the way forward, there come some days when the thinking freezes and there come other days when ideas leap forward. Last few days have made me go through both kinds of days. Sometimes, I feel that the pieces of the puzzle are all there in front of me, and I am just not able to see the big picture. At other times, a few pieces come together, and one part of the picture appears much more clearer than it was. Through a mix of incremental thinking punctuated with a few epiphanies, one moves forward.
It is so much a mental game. It needs enormous self-belief in what one is doing. There is always the fear that one could be on totally the wrong track. Too much of that thinking and there is a paralysis of thought. As an entrepreneur treads paths other have bypassed or simply not seen, there is a need for “vision and will” — the ability to not just see a future which can be created, but also determination and perseverance to push forward.
There is no one path, there is no one answer. The path is created out of small forays, perhaps in a few directions. As one explores the surroundings, things become just that clearer. Coupled with instinct, one has to make bets. And if those bets are wrong, then one has to go back and re-try. There is no magic, no wand-waving which takes one to the destination.
That is why I love “Lord of the Rings”. The entrepreneur is like the ring-bearer: alone. The mind works in the future, creating new dreams and situations of what can be done with the means at one’s disposal.
Entrepreneurs must enjoy the journey more than just reaching the destination. Each day has its own surprises on the path forward (or backward). The unknown and unexpected is part of an entrepreneur’s staple diet. It is very important to accept the ups and downs (and entrepreneurs face more downs that ups) with joy. Because this is a future they have picked by choice.