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Failure vs Learning

It is easy to see your attempts to pursue your dreams as a failure if things don’t not go as you planned. A lot of us jump on a bandwagon of quitting 9 to 5 leaving the establishment. You will hear about success stories from personal development gurus and big names. Those are only a few comparing to the ones that did not get what they wanted. But those guys keep quiet for many reasons. One of them is a fear to be judged as a failure.

I would like to share my story with you. Before I became a coach I like a lot of us out there I had a dream of quitting my job and retire. I looked at real estate businesses – house flippers, foreclosure bargain hunters and so on. Then I came across of online shop idea – selling goods on amazon and shopify. I loved it – researching potential products, design labels, manufacture them in China and sell them all over the world. All without leaving my house.

I registered a company and worked around the clock while I had my 9 to 5. Waking up at 4 AM to have sessions with my mentors and mastermind groups. Speaking with suppliers and label designers. It was fun. I finally quit my job thinking that business will take off however that did not happen. Watching the indicator of my savings fuel tank approaching red “empty” indicator I had no more funds to invest in the new stock and products, things were moving really slow comparing to what I expected.

I was still doing coaching on the side while attending communication and personal development courses but the online business was taking up most of my time. It was driving me insane – here I am supposedly free from establishment man only I was not free. I felt more stressed than I was when working in banking. Unable to admit that I won’t be able to focus on both coaching and online business I kept going until I could no longer invest in the online business.

Then the clarity came in. Firstly while I was having fun creating my own products to sell it was not my true calling. I was there for the money. Secondly once I could focus on one thing at a time it made everything easy. Shortly after having a conversation with my accountant I closed the company that I spent so much time and effort building. So some may say – Jay what a disaster you could have used that money to go on holidays, buy a new car, etc. It felt a bit like that for some time. Friends who remembered that I started the online retailers company asked me hows things were going and I felt embarrassed to admit that it wasn’t going anywhere at that point.

But gradually I started seeing how much I learnt from that experience. Dealing with vendors overseas took my communication skills to the next level which helps with my building relationship with my work and coaching. Seeing the product lifecycle from completion to the end (heck I had to arrange custom clearances, warehouse storage, filter eligible suppliers, learn about paper grade and adhesives used in some of my products) made me understand the bigger picture when it comes to delivering services in my industry. Being able to track progress with goals helped tremendously in my personal development and helping my clients to get where they want.

So looking at all that was it worth the experience? Yes! Would I do it again knowing the outcome? 100%! Otherwise I would not have the learnings, meet those people and would always guess what would happen if I did try to open my online business.

If you could take anything from my story it would be this – get rid of the word failure in your language. It does not belong there. There is no failure only learning and feedback. Have a beautiful day everyone.

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