If you’re an entrepreneur, or aspiring to be one, a gem of a book to add to your wish list this year is penned by Darren Hardy, author of the best-seller, The Entrepreneur Roller Coaster.

Part business autobiography, part self-help inspirational guide, Hardy (who is the publisher of Success), gives us the highs and lows of entrepreneurship. More importantly, how to avoid all the pitfalls that–according to Hardy–point to why 66 percent of all new businesses fail.

Hardy says people making the jump into entrepreneurship just aren’t ready, prepared, or equipped. They haven’t developed the skills that are unique to entrepreneurship versus being an employee, and they certainly haven’t been prepared emotionally for the journey.

How to Succeed as an Entrepreneur

In his book, Hardy ties winning in the game of entrepreneurship to starting off the gates well. There are three critical parts you need to master along the journey to success:

1. You need to be warned about what’s ahead.

It’s the unexpected twists and turns that knock people out of the process, says Hardy. If seasoned mentors further down the path of the entrepreneurial rollercoaster can warn startup founders of the challenges and obstacles, the naysayers and doubters, and the general nastiness they will face along the journey, they’ll be expecting it and be ready for it. Hardy says having that understanding ahead of time makes entrepreneurs “emotionally bullet-proof.” It’s evidence of progress so that when they’re blindsided and disillusionment sets in, they won’t say “I’m out.”

2. You need the skills akin to successful entrepreneurship.

Entrepreneurship is not the same as a corporate job. The skill set is different. Hardy breaks it down into 4 specific skills entrepreneurs need to grasp:

3. You need to overcome your fear.

This is the most important of the three. Hardy says fear is the biggest obstacle to success. The entrepreneurs that get over this emotional hump gain a realistic perspective into their situation, which keeps fear from hijacking them along the journey. It’s realizing that life will go on when you make mistakes or experience rejection. It’s getting to know yourself at your core so that any drama you make up in your head is merely that–drama. It’s starting with a clean slate after each failure, and avoiding attaching a bad experience of the past to your current reality. When it happens, you quickly call it a lie, and declare that it has no power over you. In fact, to unpack this further, Hardy shares six profound ways that any entrepreneur can overcome fear by “hacking your system.” It’s worth a read.

Next Steps

Every entrepreneur is in a different season of life. As you look into the lessons above, which of these have helped you along your own entrepreneurial journey? Which one can you honestly self-assess and say, “I need this now?”

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