Thursday, November 17, 2011

Set Your Expertise and Build Confidence Around It

Many people dream of becoming independent by starting their own businesses. In the current economy, even large, established companies cannot be relied upon as safe and stable sources of income. They may downsize to reduce costs or even close down. Being employed by a large, established company once was a status symbol. It meant safe and stable earnings and the ability to make a living. In contrast, starting a small business was regarded as risky and unstable. This no longer appears to be the case. Being employed by any company right now seems as dangerous as running one's own business. If the risk factors are the same, I would rather be self-employed.

Upon realizing this, however, most people become fearful and back off the idea of self-employment. I have listened to people say they did not have the right level of expertise or the necessary skills, abilities, qualifications, or licenses. They were not confident about running a business. They seemed to force themselves to draw negative conclusions. They would list all the reasons they could not, in their minds, run a business.

From the ages of three to eight, Hitoshi was always terribly weak and sick. He had a high fever about every five days. When he had dinner away from home, he was always sick to his stomach the next day. He could not do any physical education in school. In running competitions, he always came in last.

He worried about his health and became depressed. His doctor sent him to get some fresh air in the seaside village for one month.

Because he was born in downtown Tokyo, Hitoshi's experience in the village was something totally new. He enjoyed swimming with local boys and could not have time to be sick. Occasionally he had a fever due to too much playing, but he gradually regained his strength. He loved swimming with his new friends in the village. By the time his stay was over, he could swim as well as his local friends could.

He came back to school. His physical conditions were still not as good as those of others. He had changed, however. He no longer took days off. He went to school every day and took part in physical training. One summer, he was selected to be a representative for his class on a swimming team, competing against other classes. On the day of the competition, Hitoshi surprised his classmates with his fast swimming. Thank to Hitoshi, his class won first place. He successfully built his confidence around swimming.

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