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The Squirrel and the Entrepreneur

I recently witnessed a scene we all see at least once a day. It went like this:

Sammy Squirrel has plans to get to the other side of the road.

He starts by sprinting about 4 feet into the road, then stops.

Car flies by at 40 mph.

Sammy turns around and jumps back about a foot to miss the car, then whips back in the other direction rushing another 5-6 feet.

He stops.

He waits. Looks around.

About halfway across now, he darts again toward the other side. Cars still coming from both directions, but he's determined.

Now in slow-mo, he's moving left and right, left and right, left and right; then HIGH-SPEED kicks in again for another 8 feet as he successfully reaches the other side.

(The best part, this all happened in about half the time it just took you to read the story!)

As I watched and cheered on this little dude, it hit me: Those 10-15 seconds tell the story of the life of an entrepreneur!

It goes something like this...

Emily Entrepreneur has plans to get to the other side of the road (whatever the "other side of the road" means for her - financial independence, freedom, empowering people, solving a problem, retiring early, making a difference, whatever!).

She starts by sprinting into a new venture, then stops. (She starts second-guessing herself - "Should I have done this? Are people really going to buy this? Maybe they were right, and this ISN'T a good idea. What was I thinking?")

Car flies by at 40 mph. (The "car" can be negative people, roadblocks in the process, financial struggles, production issues - and you didn't see that "car" until it was almost on top of you!)

Emily turns around and jumps back about a foot to miss the "car" (re-evaluating, considering the options, revamping to address issues) then whips back in the other direction rushing another 5-6 feet. (She"s back on track, and re-energized now more than ever!)

She stops. (Stalled again. She feels like she's hit a wall. Or maybe things are going okay, but complacency has set in.)

She waits. Looks around. (Not sure how to proceed. Should she go back? Should she keep going? Should she just stay where she is now?)

About halfway across now, she darts again toward the other side. Cars still coming from both directions, but she"s determined. (The prize is within reach. She can almost taste it. Focused. Determined. Eyes locked on the big picture, making it to the "other side!")

Now in slow-mo (or so it seems), she's moving left and right, left and right, left and right (dodging "cars" daily - product problems, employee problems, customer problems, technology problems), then HIGH-SPEED kicks in again for another 8 feet as she successfully reaches the other side. (Each step brings with it highs and lows, but the focus is still there, NOTHING will keep Emily Entrepreneur from reaching the "other side!")

For a few, this whole process may take months; for most, though, it will take years or even decades! But, just like the squirrel, we keep going because we are determined to make it to the other side!

We're not afraid of the oncoming cars, or even how fast they're going! We're going to make it!

What about you?​

What is your "other side"? What are the "cars" in your way?

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