There are three words people use interchangeably, where they really shouldn`t be doing so: Faith, Belief, and Conviction.
The difference between conviction and belief is that the latter
resolves down to nothing at all other than a statement to oneself.
Conviction rests on demonstrable evidence of some tangible form. Faith
is a belief, but mostly associated with theology or some sort.
The problem in modern times is that people can`t seem to distinguish
between facts, truth, and convictions, versus faith, belief, and
fantasy. It`s what`s called an epistemological crisis if you`d like the
$64 word version of it. ;-)
Mostly it comes out of today`s "modern" education, where children are
told that nothing is real, nothing is absolute, nobody can ever know
anything for sure, and reality is all a matter of opinion.
It sounds to me as though you`ve come through this educational system, and now have to deal with the consquences.
The evidence is all around you. It is in the hundreds, no, thousands of people who have taken the "leap of conviction". Perhaps you need to look outside of your own self and experiences to find it, which of course is what you`re doing here at SuN. Besides educating yourself with business in general, you might have to educate yourself further with the entrepreneurial mindset of others.
This thread caused me to think about how I finally took the leap. It sort of came naturally to me but when I think about it, I picked up a lot of inspiration from reading business stories. I am an avid business book reader now but it started with reading stories about people who built companies and how they happened. What I got from those books were who these people are. It made me feel like anyone can do it. So I found "conviction" from others` successes. The proof is out there.
Yup...Steve`s right, and the best way to become convicted...um...okay,
maybe convinced...is to start doing things. There`s nothing that builds
confidence more than accomplishment.
By the way, at 39, you were smack dab in the middle of the so-called
revised modern education, which was the start of this whole nonsense
the kids of today are dealing with.
Put together an outline of the business, then set up a meeting with
your local SCORE group. Talk with the retired execs, see what they say.
I`ll bet that when you have some objective outside analysis, you`ll
find that it helps you determine you`re not crazy, you have a good
idea, and with some work, it could likely begin to take shape.
Remember, conviction is based on tangible evidence. That means real
events, real successes, real accomplishments. It doesn`t mean you have
to have a finally successful business to become convinced, only that
you take the first step and succeed. Then the second step, and succeed.
Before long, with enough initial steps, you`ll find that you become
convinceder and convinceder. :-)
I must support Craig`s statement. (Also Nike`s slogan, sort of) Just do something.
I was stuck for nearly a decade trying to figure out "the thing" that would be best for me. Then I started doing little things that have nothing at all to do with business or even hobbies, but were obvious, beneficial, and fun. Next thing I knew, I was here with an idea. Nothing succeeds like personal success. I suspect our subconscious cares not whether it`s a tiny success or a huge success, just so long as we do something and finish it.
Heard a great line a couple of weeks ago: If something is worth doing, it`s worth doing wrong, at least at first. Seems to be true.
New Ideas for a New World
Depression will do the trick. I`m not even kidding. I just launched my business, which I credit 100% to the StartUp Nation book (well, and of course, to my own imagination). I had my concept for years, and though my life wasn`t going the way I wanted it to professionally or personally, I just couldn`t seem to put my "great idea" to the test. This past October I hit rock bottom, and because I felt like things couldn`t get any worse, I decided to take control, dusted off (literally) my Start Up Nation book, and just started reading it. No pressure. Just read it. The life plan exercises were very illuminating: how could I create a business completely revolving around the things I love and the daily life style I want (as an artist, this was a tall order). Nevertheless, my idealistic and far-fetched concept started to take shape. And the next thing I knew, one foot in front of the other, I had started a company. It has taken off with flying colors, and people are jumping on board to support it because "it is so unusual" and "so much fun" -- the very things that I thought would be its downfall. Anyway, just this afternoon I took a nap, woke up, and there was more money in my bank account than I normally make in three weeks! What I`m saying is: do it. Even if it fails, it will work wonders on your self-esteem. The very act of taking steps feeds on itself and propels you forward. Start with the life plan, even if you have a concept already. And good luck. Think of it as "taking a teeny step" before bed tonight. Not as "the leap". That phrase kept me stuck for years. And please check out my newly launched website, www.eatingtheirwords.com