"Don’t be afraid to fall because you will rise stronger"

Do you still remember the international POPRI competition, EUSAIR POPRI Youth, that took place in May 2021

and moderator Sašo Papp? No? Click HERE to refresh your memory 😊

Sašo Papp, moderator at events EUSAIR POPRI Youth 2021, businessman and a journalist, has written an interesting article for all of us... enjoy reading!

Do you realize how few entrepreneurs and businesses have succeeded without setbacks? I would bet that there are no people and businesses that do not have or have not had setbacks to learn from. And yet, I feel like we do not talk about it enough. Probably because such a debate is not too "fancy". But you know what we always say everywhere, right? That you should learn from mistakes. Without them, there is no development.

"It's the journey that matters, not the destination," to paraphrase the thinking of many smarter, more experienced, and much more successful people than me. Gary Vaynerchuck, among others, talks about this often, saying that he enjoys the challenges of the journey every day. And that's a mindset. It's not easy to get into such thinking, but I believe that such a "mindset" is one of the extremely important points for success.

Having two young daughters (ages 6 and 3) at home, I cannot help but compare the downturn in the economy to how a child learns to walk. Not by being held by the arms and leaning on us, as we see parents and even more often grandparents of toddlers do, but by clinging to the things around them and searching for balance. In doing so, of course, it is necessary to fall many times. Each fall is recorded by the toddler in his little brain and from this mass of falls and large amounts of data, he then tries to find a better solution. The parent's job, of course, is to provide a safe environment for the child to fall often and gain experience. Here I see a parallel with supportive startup environments like Primorski tehnološki park, which takes care of you, a safe environment, encourages you, provides support and knowledge.

Let us stick with the infant analogy for a moment. There are at least two things that most parents have gotten wrong in recent years. They are far too protective, caring far too much for their toddlers, and another problem is the use of modern technology (television instead of nature walks). The result is that we have a lot of pre-schoolers who do not know how to run, how to make a pass, and are practically motor disabled, which is not a good way to live by any means.

Even in entrepreneurship, on the one hand, we can be too cautious, for example, we do not dare to test a new idea, or we rely too much on technology and do not understand that we can reach customers in many "analog" ways and not only through social networks. But as many entrepreneurs become more anti-social and communicate digitally, it's just much easier and more convenient for us to communicate digitally instead of going to a live event and getting a chance to present our product or idea, make new contacts and get potential new customers. You have probably read somewhere before that it's not what we know, but who we know that matters. So, expanding your circle of acquaintances can only be a good journey and a darn good investment of time. And live dating still far outweighs digital opportunities to do so.

And here I cannot help but think of the comfort zone. You must know that most of the time we humans are our own greatest adversary. Our brains are made to protect us from acting as our protector. That voice inside us that keeps telling us that it's better if we do not do something, do not do it, rather stay on the couch, etc. You know why? Because if you do not go hunting, nothing bad can happen to you. You cannot take a bad fall and get hurt; you cannot get eaten by a wild beast...

Our brains have thought so limited for millennia. And then you do not go hunting until you are really hungry, right? Then the survival instinct kicks in and then we can move mountains, catch mammoths and have unlimited energy and focus. Well, until we run out of energy from hunger. To prevent this from happening to us on our entrepreneurial journey, it's extremely important to artificially build a true "state of mind". Alone. To purposefully change what we say to ourselves. To overcome the protective thinking of the inner voice or our brain.

It's important to step out of your comfort zone, kick yourself in the butt every day, multiple times if necessary, and be 100% willing to fall. To failure, to rejection, to the fact that the next phone call or email will bring you rejection, which is always hard to accept. But if you practise, you'll know up front that one or 64 rejections does not equal failure. It may not take away your desire to win. But you may be just one call or contact away from success.

And remember. Growth only happens when the instances we learn from are also present. So look in the mirror every morning and say to yourself, "No problem if I fall today. I am not afraid because I know that without falls there is no progress, no success".

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