In a recent conversation with a Third Circle Theory & Secret Academy student, a question came up about how to handle family members who are not supportive of their ventures but also lack awareness. While it is easy to handle if it is a relative that does not live with you, it becomes a bit tricky if it is your spouse or significant other that you have to deal with on a daily basis. How do you handle that?
Entrepreneurship is like a sport, it has players (yourself) and then everyone else (spectators). Just like in sports, both share a significantly different outlook and perspective on the situation.
Have you ever watched a game and noticed that fans get rowdy, irritated, or annoyed when their team doesn’t play well? Yet they have probably never played a day in their life but their feelings, looking from the outside in, is very passionate despite holding very little relevance to the reality behind the situation.
When you are an entrepreneur, you accept the burden of taking on larger than expected problems to create solutions. You choose to do so based on vision, belief, and the power of overcoming your fears; three things that many people will never experience in their lives especially not while being spectators.
The one mistake, you as an individual (player) can make, is to expect spectators to understand and be as aware as you are while on the field, which unfortunately is something that never happens (why they are spectators).
Your level of awareness, dedication, vision, and belief will never be matched by those around you who do not share them, understand them, or work within them and it would be foolish to believe that they should. Not everyone will share your awareness level making it even more difficult sometimes to stay the course especially when the cause of petty frustrations comes from someone who will directly benefit from the rewards of the success.
The problem is that you shouldn’t look at it that way and instead understand that as spectators, it is more likely that those who do not understand still share a common need to give their emotions and perspective even if misguided.
It is no different in sports when players themselves never have a need to justify their stance on the matter because they realize that people looking from the outside in will never really understand. They are not providing value or criticism but rather appealing to their very own selfish need to belong to something they do not know how else to belong to.
Learning to block out all the white noise is part of becoming a successful entrepreneur and should be looked at as just that, white noise that cannot deter or slow you down, unless you allow it to.
The best way to deal with petty frustration is to understand when to fight back and when to educate the source. Fighting back is sometimes necessary but very few times does it create true change without the educational piece attached to it. Educating those who are really a forced influence in your life is part of the journey and convincing them of the support system you need in order to succeed is no different than convincing a customer as to why they should buy your product or service.
At the end of the day, there are spectators and players, passengers and drivers, and you and them. Either way you look at it, only one is leading the way and that person is YOU.