You need to dig deeper than you think.

Image for post
Image for post

As a startup mentor and a coach, I witnessed so many entrepreneurs going through the trenches of selling their idea to the investors, creating momentum in their business, and finally “making it”. Some made it, so many didn’t.

As for why so many can’t make it, I knew the usual reasons such as product-market fit, the team experience and dynamics, timing, and luck, etc. But, connecting deeper with entrepreneurs, now as an entrepreneur myself, I’ve become fascinated by the internal process that strongly influences whether we can achieve our goals.

The internal process consists of constant self-awareness to cultivate the right thoughts and behaviors for success. It is also repeatedly choosing to embody the characteristics and actions of a successful person. Coaching dozens of people, and self-coaching on a daily basis, I noticed that there five major questions to help us master this internal…

Know thyself, take your power back.

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Matheus Ferrero on Unsplash

An a**hole boss, who puts you under their thumb, nitpicks what you said and did, randomly messages you saying what you did wrong, and pushes you to play on your weakness is your ticket to stand up as a leader. Counterintuitive?

A close friend — let’s call her Brittney — told me about her struggles with her boss at one of the top tech companies. ⁠This boss was expecting her to be creative yet super detailed (though it’s not her strength), and work extra hours with no extra pay. She cared so much about looking good to others, therefore she’d push her team for perfection and fake positivity. Brittney resisted these behaviors. …

And what you can do to become a successful once and for all.

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash

I remember listening to the podcast “How I Built This” and feeling enamored by the stories of entrepreneurs that I admire like Yvon Chouinard (owner of Patagonia), as well as experiencing deep despair.

I often heard successful entrepreneurs talk about their stories of going after their calling consistently, and I thought: “Oh, that’s for other people!”

Me? I just had a “potential” but not the guts, skills, or the persistence to create what I wanted. Plus, I was supposed to pay my bills and help my parents with their debts.

Taking risks was for “other people.”

Then I realized I wasn’t missing the skills or the guts. Mind you, I got an engineering degree and an MBA, as well as moved to the US from Turkey, not knowing a single person. But, I was driven by a few key mental blocks keeping me as an aspiring entrepreneur. These roadblocks caused me to be inconsistent, get overwhelmed, and call it quits in my previous entrepreneurial attempts. …

And how to stop them.

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Anthony Tran on Unsplash

There are countless times I wanted to go after my dreams. Most times, I found myself paralyzed, unable to move a finger to start my endeavor or just after starting, drenched in anxiety and overwhelm. Through studying my mind and other people, I am now well versed in recognizing and stopping the sneaky patterns, the murderers of my dreams. So can you.

I got to tell you that it hasn’t been quick or easy. It took a lot to say no to my perfectly comfortable, secure corporate job to travel around the world, get in touch with my calling, and start building it consistently. …

It is the key to building trust, true connection, and spiritual growth.

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Scott Broome on Unsplash

My partner and I are currently visiting my family in Turkey. I’ve lived in the U.S. over the last 8 years and only have only been able to visit my family a few weeks a year up to this point. Now that we’ve quit our jobs to build a new life, we are free to spend time with family as much as we want. As much as I love being with family, I am challenged by the old dynamics—you know, the ones that make your hackles rise. …

“When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.” — Lao Tzu

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Jared Erondu on Unsplash

Do you have big dreams that give you butterflies in your stomach? Immediately after the sweetness of that excitement, do you sink into a paralyzing emotional hole made of confusion, disbelief, and impatience– generating arguments on how/why you can’t get there?

I certainly have. People I coach have. My friends have.

Scarcity is a destructive lie we created collectively as a society. It is the only thing in between us and our glorious dreams of prosperity and equality for everyone. We’ve believed that there are a limited number of opportunities and resources, therefore we must compete. Competition creates a comparison which makes us feel “not good enough” because if there is only one winner, the other side must be the loser. …

Sometimes, you just need to ask a different question.

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Mr TT on Unsplash

“I want to live by my purpose. But, the moment I start looking for it, I feel lost.” said my coaching client Jackie. She looked somewhat resigned– she didn’t think there was anything to help her. After all, she had tried various jobs and read many books, only to go around in circles. She told me that she was too old to find her purpose anyway.

I worked with Jackie for a few weeks and discovered that she took many actions to figure out her calling. But it never occurred to her to ask different questions and listen in. Jackie spent plenty of time in “doing”, not enough in “being”.

Nonviolent Communication Technique can transform your relationships.

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Jason Rosewell on Unsplash

One of the most moving quotes I read is by Rumi and says “Out beyond the ideas of wrongdoing and right-doing, there is a field. I’ll meet you there”. This quote gently urged me to take an honest look at my perception of the people around me. I realized that I am too quick to label and take sides– which manifests in the way I communicate. Unfortunately, I mirror the collective human behavior; the “me vs. you” or “good guys vs. bad guys” point of view is pervasive in the news, social media, and even in our family gatherings.

Sure, we live in a world of contrast and we have moral guidelines and preferences. It seems that instead of figuring out how to make our guidelines adopted or preferences heard, we spend way too much energy in trying to “be right”. The desire to be right shows up as pushing your truth, blaming/shaming the other party for not abiding by your truth, giving in to the insatiable need for winning…

Play, so that you live lightly in a serious world.

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Sharon McCutcheon from Pexels

A few years ago, insomnia took over my life while I was so eager to start a business on the side and knock off my “personal development” goals. I tried all the therapies and known remedies, but nothing truly worked until I realized something so obvious yet completely unnoticed in my life: I was just marching towards milestones with no focus on joy or play.

This realization shook me; I looked back at my 30 years of life and saw that I achieved almost everything I set my mind to without ever enjoying the process. If I were to continue spending my life like this, by the time I am 80, I would only have empty and short-lived moments of happiness, and a whole lot of anxiety, struggle, and stress.

We can heal the world by starting with ourselves.

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Tobias on Unsplash

As a society, we are going through much-needed, long-overdue change. The #BlackLivesMatter movement is finally moving people, helping them acknowledge the truth and take ownership. The byproduct of this unrest and uncertainty is that we will have to go through discomfort to dismantle the old systems and patterns to create true equality.

It can be difficult to admit the blindspots, mistakes, and biases, whether you intentionally played a part or not. With Covid-19 prevailing and racial-social injustice outcry raising, we are being pushed to realize that we are all connected. …


Gizem Cetgin

Digital nomad, leadership coach writing about overcoming imposter syndrome, following your bliss, and relationships. Follow me:

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store