When There Seems to be No Way, Make Your Own: A Theory on Entrepreneurship
Orig. Published 8/14/2014
You see this shirt. I own it — figuratively and literally. In fact, I’ve owned this shirt since my sophomore year in college. Did I know I would become an entrepreneur? No, but I know that I have always lived my life by this creed. Perhaps it was destiny, but it seems to me that business was meant to be.(You see what I did there?) I have a penchant for problem solving and a quick mind. With that being said, I am currently unemployed. Having recently graduated I found myself in this predicament. It wasn’t that I started late. In fact, I had an offer with a great organization. I just ended up turning it down for various personal reasons. I chose my current position, and in a way I struggle with that decision everyday.
I have been fighting for employment from the moment I made that choice, and I have seen little come of it in the past few months. Frustration has become a very real friend of mine. Often times I find myself drowned in doubt. Doubting everything — my ability, my ideas, my choices. In these moments, I fear that I will never make it. What have I done? What will I do? It all seems to be very existential. Then, I am reminded of a quote from Doubt, A Parable by John Patrick Shanley. “Doubt can be a bond as powerful and sustaining as certainty. When you are lost, you are not alone.” “You are not alone…”the words resonant in my ears and slowly creep into my soul. I am not alone. So, I start over. Utilizing as many resources as I can, applying everywhere, and then, applying everywhere again.
The problem is I have not been able to nail down an offer. I have had a few interviews, but I have not made it to the “Super Bowl” if you will. So, what is one to do when they are “Young, Fat, and Ambitious?” Start something all their own. For me, it was this blog. An idea that is beginning to turn into what I hope will be a movement — a means to empower other young people like myself. And soon I found myself fiddling with numerous ideas, other means of expanding my skills and knowledge. Lately I think of this century’s greatest entrepreneurs, Zuckerberg, Huffington, Jobs. And I wonder if they found themselves in similar situations. Forced to forge their paths for the lack of a “traditional” one. So, I have formed a conclusion. Entrepreneurship fills a very real necessity for a purpose when someone has an extreme vision and unyielding ambition, but lacks “conventional” opportunities.
In essence, entrepreneurs see what others can’t — whether it is their own potential or the need to innovate. Entrepreneurs make waves in still water. They strive, seek, find and do not yield. They are pioneers — frontiersmen in their fields. They believe when others doubt. And so, I have come full circle. Granted, I am not entirely sure which, if any, of my ideas will be a success, but I am doing something. I am utilizing my time. I am adding value to others and myself. I cannot doubt why, when I am doing X. “I do, therefore I am.” It’s just a slightly different take on Descartes’ famous words.
So, if you are not sure what do to, or where to go, fear not! Look within yourself. You have the ability to create your opportunities. Take the leap, but don’t forget to stretch. Entrepreneurship may be the answer you’ve been looking for.