3 Surprising Things Holding You Back from Success

When confronted with starting your own business most people become fearful, filled with worry and often paralyzed when it comes to next steps. Fear and the “what if’s” prevent most people from living the life of their dreams. So, what separates successful entrepreneurs from others?

It may be hard to hear, but the most surprising thing holding back your success is YOU. It is true. Sometimes we just get in our own way of success – by over thinking the plan or by telling the wrong people our big ideas – and we get criticized, discouraged and our success is derailed. I’ve spent my whole life surrounded by business owners, both small and big, successful and unsuccessful and I’ve noticed a few surprising things that can derail success. Here are three surprising things holding you back from success.

Embrace Fear for Success

Fail fast and stop waiting for the perfect time and start doing. If you are waiting for the perfect moment to start your own business, you will be waiting for the rest of your life. Entrepreneurs don’t let fear stop them and successful ones have a solid strategy and tactics to back up their passion.

“Obstacles are those fearful things you see when you take your mind off your goals. Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of your fear. “ Ed Vicinanza

Fear  is crushing your dreams. Every successful person I know has had to overcome the obstacle of fear.  Fail fast, is often a motto of entrepreneurs. They try new things, fail fast, learn from it, and do better next time. Let go of the fear or better yet embrace it and use it to move forward.

Failure to Plan is Planning to Fail

This famous quote from Benjamin Franklin still rings true today.  What’s your plan? What do you want out of life and do you have a plan to achieve your dreams? Most people spend more time planning their annual vacations than they do on planning their life. It all comes down strategy and tactics.

According to ancient wisdom, detailed in the book The Art of War written by Sun TZU, an ancient Chinese Military theorist “Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.”  In other words…

Driving fast and skillfully in the wrong direction will not get you to your destination. Success in life or in business requires a balance of strategy and tactics.

What’s the difference between strategy and tactics?  To sum it strategy, describes the overall plan of going to your destination and tactics describe the specific actions you are going to take along the way.

  • Strategy is the plan that defines your long-term goals. This is the overall plan detailing the what and the why planning to achieve them. In other words, your strategy is the overall map to your destination.
  • Tactics are the actions or the“how to guide” that details the short-term goals.  These are the turn by turn directions that accompany the map. Including time frames, best practices, and progress towards the overall goal.

So does strategy determine tactics or do tactics determine strategy?  According to the 2nd edition Sun TZU The Art of War for Managers, The strategy or the plan should always come first followed by the tactics or actions.  BUT the strategy must be sound, or the tactics now matter how, great will fail.

Beware of the Success Naysayers

We all know that one person or perhaps you know a few. They are the idea zappers the success naysayers. We have all been there. You have a great idea and you can’t wait to tell someone. Most often that someone, ends up discouraging your idea with negative feedback and derailing your success before you have even started.

I have learned rom successful people, never talk about ideas or goals with small-minded people. Instead they talk to success experts. These are the trusted advisors, mentors, gurus whatever you want to call them. They are the experts that have proven success in what you want to do. The advice of a mentor is invaluable. It can protect you from the success naysayers

The person who says it cannot be done, should not interrupt the person doing it.” Chinese Proverb

Developing a network of people that can provide sound judgement and good advice based on true experience versus empty opinions is the truly the key to success. Don’t surround yourself with naysayers that want to hold you back. Good information is critical to success, and a good plan backed by a solid network is priceless.

If not now, then when? So, what’s holding you back from achieving your dream? Don’t get caught up in the fear of the unknown. Small changes can truly make a big impact. So, take that first step. Fail fast and get over the fear. Put together a solid strategy and tactics. Surround yourself with solid mentors that will help support you instead of giving your reasons that will keep you trapped in mediocrity.

About Edward Vicinanza

Ed Vicinanza speaks from experience – a successful entrepreneur, lifestyle coach and keynote speaker – Vicinanza came from humble beginnings in the bronx and has achieved beyond his wildest dreams. Raised by hard working parents in the family business, Ed Vicinanza learned the value of hard work and working for yourself. The breakthrough came when he met mentors who guided his unbridled passion and perseverance with a plan.

Ed Vicinanza now travels the globe with his beautiful wife Elise for speaking engagements to help others re discover the American dream. Together as one, Ed and Elise Vicinanza are passionate about living a legacy and helping others achieve their dreams.

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