Last year, Americans were plagued by emotional turbulence from natural disasters, tragic mass shootings, celebrity suicides, and numerous cases of gender and racial discrimination. As many entrepreneurs know, you must “exude success” to attract success in business. When you’re emotionally distressed, it’s no easy task. In fact, we’ve discovered just how many Americans are dealing with mental health issues. 2018 saw a sharp increase in suicides, as well as cases of depression and anxiety, bringing mental health awareness to the forefront of the national agenda.
Though some of these mental health issues are extreme,emotional trauma is an inevitable part of the human experience. Afterthe death of a loved one, the end of a marriage, or a job loss, it’s hard enough to survive, let alone “exude success” and run a successful business. So how can an entrepreneur, who’s put everything they own into his or her business and run into personal or financial setbacks, “exude success” and not let mental or physical anguish affect his or her mental, emotional or physical well-being?
Like many of you, I’ve faced the stress of building a business, making payroll, and surviving life’s ups and downs. My own life story is laced with deep tragedy and wild success. From that, I developed a philosophy of achievement and positive thinking that’s helped me battle the emotional roller coaster entrepreneurs and business owners constantly face. I’d like to share a few of my insights with you.
One of the most important traits human beings have is the ability to communicate. If you’re suffering from emotional trauma or personal or financial problems, don’t keep these issues to yourself. Share your struggles with family members or friends. Tell them what you’re experiencing. You might find other people have encountered similar problems. At the very least, you’ll understand you’re not alone.
You also can share work-related problems with your employees. Many business owners fall into the trap of believing they have to handle everything themselves, whether it’s expanding their product line, advertising their services, or dealing with employee issues. When this happens, it’s wise to remember no man is an island, and your employees will appreciate honest feedback and open communication.
#2 Be Adaptable
Human beings are incredibly adaptable, and we can adjust to changing circumstances. However, if you’re not the type of person who “rolls with the punches,” you’ll have a difficult time adjusting to the ever-changing business environment. Issues will arise and problems will come up. Your best strategy is not to hope bad things won’t happen, but prepare yourself to address them when they do occur.
You need a positive outlook instead of a pessimistic way of seeing things. To survive in business, you must have a “yes-we-can” attitude, and you need to understand it’s not what happens to you, it’s how you deal with it. You can’t control circumstances, but you can control how you react to them. So prepare yourself to anticipate, take charge of a situation, and focus on solving problems instead of lamenting setbacks.
#3 Trust Your Instincts
Human beings are good at overthinking and overanalyzing every decision we make. Listen to that inner voice that tells you whether something is right or wrong. Have you ever made a major life decision you later regretted? I did. After I finished my business degree, I got a job in France managing food production packaging for a food products company. One day, I learned the company was diluting the products we sold with water, even though consumers thought they were buying 100 percent food in every package.
My supervisor told me it was completely legal. I had a well-paying job with bonuses and a company-financed apartment. It would have been easy to keep the job and know I was misleading our customers. However, I couldn’t square what I was doing with my conscience, and I quit. It was scary at first because I was unemployed and I wasn’t sure how I’d be able to pay my bills. Eventually I found a career in the fashion industry, and in time, I started my own successful fashion business. My lesson is: Don’t take a job that asks you to violate your conscience, or settle for a position your inner voice tells you is wrong. You’ll come to regret it later. Wouldn’t you rather have peace of mind? I know I would.
#4 Think Positively
Many people mistakenly believe positive thinking is an escapist, head-in-the-clouds attitude that denies serious problems or reality. Nothing could be further from the truth. Positive thinking doesn’t ignore negative realities.Insteadpositive thinkers try to overcome negative realities by focusing on those aspects of a situation that are positive and using them to overcome the negative aspects of what they’re facing.
For example, even though I’ve had a lot of personal tragedy in my life, I focus on the good things I do have. My first marriage failed, but I builta veryhappy second one. I could regret quitting a well-paying comfortable job. Instead, I focus on my successful career as a fashion industry expert, author, andpublic speaker. I urge you to findsomething positive in your life and build on those positive feelings, rather than letting negative events from yourpast or present dictate your future. Think positively instead. You may find your problems aren’t so insurmountable, and you’ll have people who want to help you solve them.
Ulrich Kellerer is an inspirational business leader, international speaker, and mental health activist from Munich, Germany. For more than 20 years Kellerer worked in the European fashion industry as the founder and CEO of the German clothing line, Faro Fashion,which took over distribution rights for the brand, CLOSED(the leading European fashion company for women’s and men’s sportswear) in Bavaria – south Germany. Kellerer is the co-author of “The Soul of Success”with Jack Canfield and the author of “One Moment Can Change Your Life: Extraordinary Stories about Ordinary People.” Today, Kellerer’s life is dedicated to fighting the depression epidemic and promoting mental wellness in the workplace. For more information, visit: http://www.ulrich-kellerer.com/