As an entrepreneur, it is CRITICAL for you to guard your confidence.

You’re doing things that most people don’t do.

You’re out blazing new trails and going places that most people aren’t willing to go.

When you’re experimenting with new ideas and trying new things, there are always going to be CRITICS and people who will try to bring you down.

Because guess what? It’s easier for people to bring you down than to raise their game up to your level.

Internet Trolls

When you are an entrepreneur, you have to guard your confidence.

I’m going to give you three tips on how to do this.

But, before I do, let me just share how this all came about:

Recently, my wife and I were having dinner with some friends.

One of our friends, knowing that I was preparing for my own product launch, asked a question:

“What do you think about doing your own launch versus all the launches that you’ve done for somebody else? Do you feel any difference?”

I was like, “Heck yeah, I do.”

Because I’ve been behind the scenes helping strategize and develop launches for many, many people. For example, during the last year of my partnership with Michael Hyatt, we did four seven figure launches throughout the year.

It was a huge year, but doing a launch for somebody else is totally different than doing it for yourself, and here’s why:

When you do it for yourself, there is a ton of mental baggage.

What do I mean by mental baggage?

I’m talking about self-doubt and limiting beliefs and all that fun stuff.

There’s all kinds of mental baggage that we carry when it’s our own product, our own course, our own membership, our own launch, whatever it is.

We have to guard our confidence because, if we don’t, it’s very, very easy to get derailed.

When you’re trying new things, you’re going to have people who cast all kinds of doubts. You’re going to have people who throw sticks and stones as a way of projecting their OWN mental baggage.

I’ve released several videos sharing my views on business and entrepreneurship, and recently somebody left a comment.

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He wrote:

“I didn’t even watch the video to know that this is nothing more than a travel blogger who comes from a rich wealthy background and that’s why they’re able to do what they’re doing.”

I was like what? Dude, obviously you didn’t watch the video because (a) I’m not a travel blogger (b) I definitely did not come from a wealthy background. Everything I’ve created, I earned, and it’s because I had great people around me who supported and believed in me, but I started everything from scratch.

His comment annoyed me, and I had to remind myself that comments like this happen all the time. When you are sharing a message, product or service with the world, haters and trolls are absolutely inevitable.

It’s not your job to combat the trolls. All you need to worry about is guarding your confidence.

Here are three ways to do it:

3-ways-to-guard-your-confidence

 

1) Have a clear strategy.

When you have a clear strategy, it is very hard for you to get derailed because you know exactly what your next steps are.

I see entrepreneurs who stumble because they don’t know what it is that they’re going to be doing next or they don’t have a clear strategy and what happens is that when somebody casts a little bit of doubt their way, they second guess themselves and then they backtrack and then now they’re completely off the rails.

Get clear on your strategy so can focus on simply executing.

 

2) Have supportive voices in your life.

Being an entrepreneur isn’t easy.

You’re going to have your ups and our downs, and when you have your downs, you need people who can bring you right back up.

There are two sides to this coin:

One, seek out those supportive voices.

Look to family, friends, mentors, mastermind partners – whoever – who can help coach you and support you and encourage you.

And be that supportive voice for others!

Don’t just vocalize but demonstrate your support by taking ACTION.

This doesn’t need to be a huge gesture. Just reaching out to show your support is enough. In fact, when I’m finished here on my way home, there’s somebody that I’m going to send a voice message to because I just listened to their podcast and it was amazing.

Supportive voices are incredibly important. Seek them. Be one.

 

3) Know your “why?”

As in, why did you become an entrepreneur in the first place? Why did you start your business?

When you are super clear on your why, that’s like the guiding star that keeps you focused.

When I first started out, my why was simple: to provide a better life for myself and my family.

But as I started experiencing some success and discovering the impact my business could have, I found another why.

My wife and I started a charity where we build schools in Kenya. At the time of writing this, we’ve built eight schools, and two are currently in construction.

So the more money I make, the more I can contribute to that project, and that motivates me daily.

When you get clear on your why, people can say what they want and they can try to derail you, but none of that matters because you have complete confidence in the path you’re on.

 

guard-your-confidence

 

Summary:

  1. Have a clear strategy.

  2. Have supportive voices (and be a supportive voice, too).

  3. Know your “why?”

It’s not easy being an entrepreneur. But you and I, we’re the ones making things happen.

Entrepreneurs have the power to change the world and that’s why I love and believe in entrepreneurship so much.

Keep your confidence up. The world will thank you for it.

 

Your turn: What do you do to guard your confidence? Let me know in the comments below.


 

  • Tom Rubens

    Great questions, Stu! The only thing I’d change–and it may be splitting hairs–is that I’d change the order in this quote: “Supportive voices are incredibly important. Seek them. Be one.” My suggestion to anyone truly looking for support is to first offer it, then ask for it. People tend to be far more eager to help, after they’ve been helped. Love your work, Stu!

  • raspyni

    Fantastic… want trolls and naysayers? Become a professional juggler 🙂 All the best.

  • Jennifer

    Great post and reminder. I usually prefer to have everything outlined and planned before I even mention something I’m working on to anyone else. Sometimes I get really excited about something and blurb about it before I really have a good plan; I get flustered by any criticism, but that is just because I wasn’t prepared with a good strategy.

    • Steve Gould

      I do the same thing all the time…The problem I face is that talking with people helps me refine my thoughts. I think I just need to be more selective on who I share them with…

  • Steve Gould

    So important! I was just talking with a buddy about this same topic this morning! Thank you for sharing.

    I go for a walk every morning and meditate on three things, gratitude, vision, and focus. Giving specific attention on what I have to be thankful for helps remind me that I have been immensely blessed and that I have come a long way. Meditating on my vision every day helps remind me what I am aiming for and why I do what I do. Getting focused helps me prioritize my day put first things first.

    I find that I lack in having supportive voices and that is something I need to intentionally seek out.

    • Jayney Goddard

      I love the idea of your morning walk – can you explain a bit more of how you meditate on both vision and focus? (I have the gratitude one down already 😊). Warmest wishes to you.

      • Steve Gould

        My meditation on gratitude, vision, and focus are all in prayer form. I start out by thanking God for the abundant blessings in my life. Then, as I shift to vision and I start by stating some of the affirming truths of my life, such as, “thank you for creating me and giving me tremendous talent to impact the world with.” After affirming truths I state my envisioned future (vision), what it looks like when I am living the life I was created to live. During this time I also seek, direction and guidance (Proverbs 3:5-6) Lastly, I start to focus in on the day ahead, what is top priority, where I need to be spending my time, etc. When I get back to the house I feel refreshed, energized and ready to take on the day!

  • Great post Stu. For me guarding my confidence is about regular routines of prayer, meditation, exercise and doing those things I know from experience fill me. One important aha moment for me was realising when times get tougher to actually do more of those things rather than less. That is counter intuitive as we tend to think we don’t have time or energy to do that, but it usually is so important.

  • Katie Betts

    This is perfect 🙂

  • Estelle donoghue Harder

    Found way to clear focus i have the time place at home to do so .i have learnt the hard way being way to open yet always helping others with idea’s to increase own business.am now thinking event to do so this side of Christmas WORKING LATE at night to finish first batch sold immediately, Mum’s love them this allows me to help the kids i wanted to help .thanks Stu.

  • Celeste Jensen

    Awesome article, Stu. Love the troll comic. Negativity from others is so often a reflection of where THEY are in their lives, rather than a measurement of the quality of your work. To keep my confidence, I STAY FOCUSED ON SERVICE. When I’m in the game to support others through my business, I don’t take things so personally. As long as i know that my intent was to improve someone’s life through my efforts, and that maybe ONE life was improved because I put myself out there, I can feel confident. My feathers do get ruffled by the haters, I do feel their negativity, but i don’t need to hold on to it. I can wish them happiness and health, then release them to the universe.

  • Well said! Those naysayers and self doubts/limiting beliefs can be really harmful. If only there were troll insurance!

  • Mark Tiderman

    preach! Good word Stu. Thanks for the reminder.

  • Justin Baeder

    Great stuff, Stu! Clarity, support, and purpose—love it! And we really need to expect failure—that not everything is going to work out, and that’s OK. We keep taking action, keep learning, and keep experimenting.

  • kanaleaglobal

    Thank You Stu for sharing your experience, inspirations & wisdoms 🙂

    Would love to learn if you replied to the person who thought you came from a well-to-do background …?

    In answer to your question, I invest my energy into each of the antidotes you reminded us of and in addition, I have also written a number of my answers to common questions, challenges, confusions & projections from people of all angles – to feel as prepared as I can be when these occurrences happen. They’re forwarded to one of my pieces, whether it’s a blog piece, a meditation, one of the books, courses and / or programs working on specifically that node 🙂

    I get to create, feel empowered through sharing & teaching, and I learn about myself that much more as well. Most importantly, I don’t feel drained when these messages & interactions come up, I embrace them as potential interesting stories to tell ! 🙂 Perhaps you would consider using this technique for Guarding Your Confidence and balanced energies …?

    Keep up your good work Stu, big fan and look forward to supporting you further as the decades roll on ~ *High fives* Kana Lea

  • Carol

    Great post and very encouraging. I’d add comparison to the list. Comparison kills my confidence in a hurry.

  • Great Post Stu. And at such a time as this. I host a Prayer Blog Talk Radio show and felt after listening and receiving Encouragement from my own words I would leave a comment for the Ideal Person, who this show is for. Sure someone had something troll-like to say…
    (I did not edit my message as apparently that person did not read the Show Summary or Listen to the actual Show). 💗 ** Leaders are Optimists their Vision is beyond the Present. **

  • AHH this is so timely! I’m in the middle of building my first online product and BOY are there doubts. It’s kept me tentative and apprehensive and has definitely gotten me off track a times. But I know my why. I have a pretty clear strategy. And I have great support.

    Thanks for sharing this, Stu. You’re helping thousands 🙂

  • Stu, I refocus on what I uniquely offer to people and remember that since everyone is subjective not everyone will be willing or able to receive it.

  • William Ripley

    Words of wisdom

  • I take the time every day to center, ground and reconnect with my Why. Daily morning affirmations are a great way to start a morning practice that keeps you confident. Example: “I love to see the results XX (the people you serve) achieve with my guidance.”

  • Beto Espinosa

    Thank you Stu. Really very good reflection!!
    I appreciate so much your words. I’m beginning a new stage in my entrepreneur life and your comment about the confidence touched me in deep.
    Thank you again GurúStu.

  • Bill Quinn

    Thanks Stu, great post, I listen to a lot of the great motivational speakers like Earl Nightingale, Les Brown, Zig Ziglar, who advocate the same message. Guarding your confidence is a daily task. Thanks for helping me today, I just did the same for a client, its amazing how it keeps coming back to you!!!!

  • Cesar Alvarez

    Great Post Stu. I came to your blog via Michael Hyatt. And unlike the troll that posted that comment. I see the work and effort you put in every post. Greeting from Australia

  • Bright

    Thanks Stu. This is a timely message for me.

  • Sarah Hamilton Halberg

    Thanks Stu, I’m just starting out and although I’m generally positive and optimistic, I find some days my confidence drops. I appreciate your advice, and I will try to follow it as I continue down this wild but thrilling road! You are an inspiration 🙂

  • Hi Stu! Great post. Thank you! I have regular spiritual connection practices I do daily so I always feel deeply connected to my core and higher power even when humans throw speed bumps and doubt in my direction. My favorite is visualizing myself in a bubble of love and protection. I picture the positive bubble bumping negative people and situations out of my way and I feel all cushy inside. 🙂

  • chrissie21

    Hi Stu, thank you for your very inspirational and timely post. This totally resonates. I used to find it very difficult to ask for support from others. My life continues to be enriched and transformed by working with an intuitive supportive coach, going deeper into my spiritual practice, reconnecting with the deep roots of my faith…and developing a network of friendships, communities, that encourage, support and nurture one another. Wishing you every blessing on your journey.

  • Adrien Plavsic

    Thank you Stu! Since I am starting out, it is nice to have someone share what possible obstacles one can experience. When I was a young hockey player and made the decision I wanted to play in the NHL, many said that was not a realistic goal. Well, I played for 5 years and I believe if I then knew how to guard my confidence, I would had a great career in the NHL! My experience tells me that if you are yearning for something, you must follow that path. I believe there is something guiding us from within and only you know what path feels right for you. It might not always be easy but the growth you experience will lead you to great places.

  • Stu, thank you. I keep making up ways to reach more people. I work deeply with my clients to release their fears. Self doubt can kill you before you even get started. So I guard against it with writing down and celebrating my growth. And whenever anyone compliments me I ask for their testimonial so I can read it aloud to myself every day. I have an accountability buddy who has gotten me through the worst times. A good coach is crucial. Hope this helps someone out there.

  • Ilovewisdom

    When I first encountered trolls, it really shattered and disillusioned me for 2 reasons. 1) When they were building their businesses/ministries, I was there to encourage them and support them when things became hard. They expressed appreciation BUT when I began to build my own, they lashed out! I couldn’t believe it. No reciprocation, only betrayal. I would have rather chosen silence then their evil FB comments and setups. 2) Several were in church leadership. And it was the main preacher that spewed the most hateful comments. But I learned this: When one acts like a troll, universal law happens and one will be dealt with as a troll. Don’t ever think they will get away with it. Their hatefulness will be multiplied back to them (and it’s best that it not be through you – just recover and rebuild)

  • Cathy Hay

    Thank you Stu, a post like this is *always* timely. I think protecting your confidence is a message everyone needs to hear because it *is* so very easy to get derailed, and when we’re in that place it seems like everyone else is crushing it and we’re the only one struggling. It’s good to hear you admit how easily it can happen to ALL of us. We’re all in this together!

  • Masara Dziruni (Mr. Move it!)

    The best way to guard your confidence is to BE CONFIDENCE. I did not say to be
    confident. I mean to BE CONFIDENCE. In this state of BEING you have confidence
    on your side then you can deal with the other issues. If you are an
    entrepreneur you have got to BE an ENTREPRENEUR, then you deal with all the
    other issues that are part of BEING an entrepreneur.

    There is a catch though it takes a lot of hard hard laborious work, that type of work that
    most will not do TO BE. Give yourself 36 to 60 months and you too can claim your GIFT!

    Every cell in my body is an entrepreneur now I just have to deal with the issues of an
    entrepreneur. 🙂 M!

  • Valentinos Filippou

    Great post! I am actually in the middle of this doubt thing and this post was what I needed! 🙂

  • Rainee Carlson

    Stu, thx, this post gave me a few points to think about going forward as well as the comments from the other TRIBE members. One thing that has changed for me is limiting conversations with negative people and not opening myself up to fuel their opinions. Then if asked what I’m working on, I keep it generic.

  • mazi eze

    Wow, Stu! Great stuff you got here.

    Nobody ever made meaningful progress looking backward perpetually.

    That’s what confidence is: having a sharp focus and moving forward.

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