2023 Is The Year and a Fear of Uncertainty. Here’s How to Navigate It.

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As we approach 2023, there is a buzz of uncertainty, amplified by headlines warning us of an impending recession, or, as one article described it, “a massive reset,” – a term used to describe widespread layoffs across the country. technology sector. The latest report from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics only adds to the collective discourse that we are, well, doomed, saying that 263,000 new jobs were added to the workforce – more than expected – despite the Hiring economy remains very tight. .

The truth is that uncertainty never rises – it’s always there. What is rising, in fact, is our fear in uncertainty. And we, as leaders of the company, try to do everything in our power to minimize it, analyze it and want it to go away. But the truth is, uncertainty is always there. We can strengthen our supply chain, reduce inflation and vaccinate ourselves against Covid-19, but a new health scare may strike, a war may break out or a natural disaster.

As we begin 2023, businessmen have the opportunity to develop a relationship that is less secure and more comfortable with its existence. In fact, according to the Kauffman Foundation, a staggering 57% of Fortune 500 companies were started during a recession, so despite the fear of what’s to come, there is a path to success. Here are seven ways to use the unknown and find opportunity within that uncertainty:

1. Recognize what is and is not in your control

No matter how much we plan, research and analyze, there are always forces beyond our control. Instead of worrying about ridding ourselves of these situations, we need to analyze our challenges and categorize them according to what we can and cannot control. For those that we cannot control, we should be aware of them but also not think of trying to predict their results. No one can predict the impact of a pandemic on their individual business. However, we can now reflect on the lessons learned, appreciate the innovation that has taken place and reflect on how we can act more proactively in the future.

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2. Frame your insecurities

Our tendency, as entrepreneurs, is to correlate uncertainty with a negative outcome. We don’t know if we will raise the amount of capital we need, we don’t know if our product will find market fit once it’s launched, we don’t know if our company will survive. The truth is, we also don’t know if we will exceed our biggest dreams, an unprecedented event will come our way that will open a new door, or an unknown need. for our product or service will arise. As Steve Jobs once said, “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward. Uncertainty can be your greatest advantage.

Related: How to Protect and Stay in Control of Your Business

3. Listen to what your sense of uncertainty is telling you

Many times, we as entrepreneurs feel a strong sense of uncertainty or fear about areas that affect us personally – which means we are more sensitive to topics that evoke a sense of fear based on prejudice. which is the result of our own life experiences. If you had a bad experience living in a different city, state or country, for example, and years later were offered an opportunity to expand there, chances are your uncertainty bias will affect you. You’ve probably raised money from a venture capital firm at some point in your career and that situation didn’t go well. You may hesitate a second time, which may block an opportunity for a profitable investment relationship.

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4. Detachment from your desired outcome

There is an old Yiddish proverb: “We plan. God laughs.” Many entrepreneurs start their businesses with their own definition of success in mind, and they get married to it. Any deviation is a failure. However, in order to properly navigate the reality of our uncertain future, we must separate our own definitions of success – removing the ego from the outcome – and be open to what may reveal itself. on the road. Uncertainty is thus also bliss.

5. Understand the bigger picture of life

There’s a bigger world out there, and it’s important that we have perspective. Take a walk in nature and realize that the things we worry about are the things in our little universe. Uncertainty is inevitable, and it is foolish for us to believe that we have the power to control much of what is going on. Your life does not depend on the success of your business. Now is a moment in time and we are just specks in a vast universe. Perspective is required.

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7. Recognize your survival instinct

The human brain has been formed over millions of years. We have an innate survival instinct that dates back to the early days of cavemen/women. For example, scientists postulate that our need to be accepted by others stems from the previous reality that if we were kicked out of the group, we would be far from fire and easily attacked by predators. This level of uncertainty has a completely different scope at that time. Even today our brains are still wired in the same survival-based fight-or-flight framework.

Related: Many People Are Overwhelmed by Fear. Here’s How I Understand It.

8. Approach with a beginner in mind

All of our lives are made up of unique experiences that are unique to each of us. These experiences form the lens through which we view the world. A child is not afraid of a stock market crash. However, he may be afraid of being alone or without food. As traders, we must remove our prejudices and retrain our minds to approach our trades with the wisdom of past experiences but also a sense of youthful foolishness.

As we begin 2023, we, as entrepreneurs, have the opportunity to change our relationship with uncertainty. There is an opportunity to work with the feeling of uncertainty by acknowledging its existence, questioning what it is trying to tell us and comfortably placing our own boundaries with its partner: fear. Uncertainty can serve as a pathway to our future path to success. Let’s just be friends first.


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