“You either win or you learn. If you want to be successful, there’s no other option.” –Dan Sullivan
Growing a private practice locates you squarely in the entrepreneurial world.
You go from being a therapist to being an entrepreneur with a specialty in therapy.
This may sound like a small shift. It isn’t. It’s an enormous identity transformation.
Being an entrepreneur puts you in direct contact with reality in a way that’s very different from being an employee or a contractor in someone else’s venture.
One of the big reasons many people never set out on their own to build their own practice is the fear of failure.
Failure is a concept rooted in a non-entrepreneurial perspective on the world.
If entrepreneurs feared failure or beat themselves up after a given failure, they’d never get very far. Because “failure” is part and parcel of the entrepreneurial adventure.
Actually, to go back to the quote that I started with here: failure has nothing to do with it.
Instead of failure, reframe your trips and falls as learning and watch what happens.
Fire Up Your Gratitude Engine
Failure sucks, we all know it, and we do everything we can to avoid it (if we’re thinking remotely clearly).
Failure is also hard to greet with gratitude. It’s far more likely, when failure presents itself, that we crumple into a frustrated heap and struggle existentially for a bit.
Learning puts you in a much better place to actually feel gratitude for whatever obstacle or challenge you’re currently dealing with.
Gratitude generates energy. It generates goodwill. It generates curiosity.
Gratitude causes things to grow – it’s like emotional sunlight.
The reframe from “failing” to “learning” is hugely helpful in large part because it gives you better access to your gratitude.
Who doesn’t love a solid bit of learning? You make a new distinction and become a whole new person. Your brain literally changes as new connections are made. In a very literal sense, when you learn something, you’ll never be the same again.
Avoid Gratitude’s Nemesis: Entitlement
I’ve had the unique opportunity to work closely with hundreds upon hundreds of clients. I’ve done my best to help these clients along their entrepreneurial path to grow a successful private practice.
When you have this type of exposure, it isn’t hard to spot obvious trends in what distinguishes those who succeed from those who fail. Or should I say, those who sign up for extra intense learning.
The primary differentiator I have seen, the root cause of success vs. the root cause of prolonged agony and frustration, is where on the spectrum of gratitude vs. entitlement they fall.
When someone is predominantly grateful, they’re very easy to help. They take action and learn through the feedback they receive. They enjoy the process. And they tend to be giving and helpful to others as gratitude engenders a feeling of “more than enough to go around.” Abundance flows.
Entitlement creates the inverse of the Gratitude reality I just described. The more entitled you are, the less fun you’ll be to help. The less grateful you’ll be. The less you’ll be inclined to jump in and take imperfect action. Which then influences your results to be less than they’d be otherwise. Which then leads to an experience of scarcity and competition, which causes you to be less willing to help others freely and generously.
Entitlement is the greatest predictor I’ve seen for whether someone is going to have an easy fun fast ride to a full practice vs. someone who is going to struggle and take a long time to go almost nowhere and blame others all the way down.
Just the fact that gratitude and entitlement can’t coexist is reason enough to ground yourself as deeply as possible in gratitude.
(And if you aren’t sure how to spot entitlement, as it can be devilishly clever in how it camouflages itself in our body/heart/minds, it often sounds like: “Why is this so hard?” or “It shouldn’t be this much work.” or “Why isn’t anyone calling me?”)
Gratitude is the Antidote to Failure
As long as you’re grateful, you’re learning.
As long as you’re learing, you’re growing.
And if you keep on learning and growing, success will eventually arrive. It might take longer than you would ideally hope for (or, it might come way faster than you expect). But gratitude will guide you right where you want to go – because a grateful heart feels good for its own sake and shines its light on everything it touches.
We love helping clients who are apprenticing to gratitude. We’re doing the same, and when we find professionals who understand the journey of gratitude and how to ride it upward, the results are consistently spectacular.
If you’re ready to take a big leap into more learning than you’ve probably ever experienced for the business side of your practice, we’d love to chat.