1 Thing You Don't Have to Do to Be Successful

1 Thing You Don’t Have to Do to Be Successful

This past week I was coaching an entrepreneur and she said something that really made me think. What she said was a reflection of the type of mindset I find common in many entrepreneurs, including myself.

In fact, what she said was something I have struggled with and still think about and face on a regular basis.

If you're a high achiever, or an entrepreneur, you may his face this problem too.

What is that problem?

The problem is… we falsely believe that we must reinvent the wheel if we're going to be successful or start something new.

Reinventing the wheel wide

When I first started Empoweringthe80Percent, I knew I wasn't the only person writing about leadership, personal development, or personal branding.

Actually, I knew of (and read) at least a dozen other writers who blogged on similar topics.

However, I wanted to do my own thing. I wanted to use my own voice, share my own experiences, and put my message out into the world.

Then, when I started WhatsNextBlogging.com, something I'll share with you more about in the near future, I realized I wasn't the only person teaching people how to build fantastic blogs and websites.

If you're like me, you've had similar thoughts, or at least gotten temporarily fixated on being late to the game.

Also, if you're like me, you have asked yourself,

Why should I do this? Other people have already been there, and done that, why should I?

And that question, that self-doubt, brings me to the comment this young entrepreneur made during our recent coaching session.

As we were reviewing the business of someone she admired, she said,

Well, I could just copy what he's doing.

When she said that, I immediately stopped our conversation to point out the brilliance of what she had just said.

Too often we think we have to reinvent the wheel in order to be successful. We believe we have to do something completely different in order to call it our own and achieve what we want to achieve.

If that were the case, Wendy's wouldn't have opened nearly 30 years after the very first McDonald's.

If that were true, Walmart would have never opened its doors after Target had already been in business for 60 years.

Sometimes we just need to copy the methods of someone who has already gone before us and been successful doing something we want to do as well.

You are unique, your ideas are unique, and your message will be unique.

That's one of the greatest things about being a little late to the game, you can see what everyone else has done, and see what worked and what didn't.

As you go out into the world today, or lay your head down to go to sleep tonight, remember this:

You don't have to reinvent the wheel to be successful. You just have to learn from others mistakes. (Tweet that!)

One last take away from our coaching session.

Instead of trying to plan everything out before you begin, take the first step and course-correct along the way.

Challenges will pop up that you could not have predicted. There's little use in making a detailed plan when you know you can't see the whole playing field yet.

I'd love to coach you too! If you would like one-on-one personal coaching, click here.

Question: Have you fallen victim to thinking you had to reinvent the wheel? How did you overcome that roadblock?

 

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  • Fantastic! I fought with this problem for many years. When I would try to think of new inventions or business ideas would to me, I’d inevitably throw away so many ideas based on the fact that it already existed. In the case of inventions, that’s easy to do, especially when considering patents, but like you said, things can be made better. Businesses only fall into a finite number of models, so replicating something else doesn’t make it any less relevant.

    Unique perspectives and gifts can be leveraged to make something that is a different.

    Thanks for writing, Ellory.

    • Ryan, thank you for commenting! I’m glad I’m not the only one out there who falls into this trap.

      Can you believe those year gaps btwn Walmart/Target and McDonald’s/Wendy’s? I’m so glad our ideas don’t have to be completely unique in order to succeed.

      I appreciate your feedback!

  • Fantastic! I fought with this problem for many years. When I would try to think of new inventions or business ideas would to me, I’d inevitably throw away so many ideas based on the fact that it already existed. In the case of inventions, that’s easy to do, especially when considering patents, but like you said, things can be made better. Businesses only fall into a finite number of models, so replicating something else doesn’t make it any less relevant.

    Unique perspectives and gifts can be leveraged to make something that is a different.

    Thanks for writing, Ellory.

    • Ryan, thank you for commenting! I’m glad I’m not the only one out there who falls into this trap.

      Can you believe those year gaps btwn Walmart/Target and McDonald’s/Wendy’s? I’m so glad our ideas don’t have to be completely unique in order to succeed.

      I appreciate your feedback!

  • kentsanders says:

    I had no idea Target had been around for that long. Great post!

  • I had no idea Target had been around for that long. Great post!

  • Love this: “That’s one of the greatest things about being a little late to the game, you can see what everyone else has done, and see what worked and what didn’t.”

    That strategy has worked so well for so many people. Apple didn’t release the first smartphone or tablet; they sat on the sidelines, figured out what they could do differently and what they could bring to the table, and innovated that way.

    I think that with pretty much every idea you have, someone else has probably thought of it before. Ideas aren’t that original, but it’s the execution around ideas that is. Great post.

  • Love this: “That’s one of the greatest things about being a little late to the game, you can see what everyone else has done, and see what worked and what didn’t.”

    That strategy has worked so well for so many people. Apple didn’t release the first smartphone or tablet; they sat on the sidelines, figured out what they could do differently and what they could bring to the table, and innovated that way.

    I think that with pretty much every idea you have, someone else has probably thought of it before. Ideas aren’t that original, but it’s the execution around ideas that is. Great post.

  • Good post, Ellory! Just recently discovered your podcast and really enjoy it. Love this: “You are unique, your ideas are unique, and your message will be unique.” So true.

  • Good post, Ellory! Just recently discovered your podcast and really enjoy it. Love this: “You are unique, your ideas are unique, and your message will be unique.” So true.

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