BECAUSE OF, AND IN SPITE OF, OURSELVES

Sometimes we succeed because of ourselves.  Sometimes we succeed in spite of ourselves.  Nowhere is this truer than in entrepreneurial endeavors.

Mika Street took a job in 2001 with global consulting firm Accenture right after college.  Within a couple years, she realized there was a business within her begging birth.  She wanted to open a Pilates studio.  And so she pursued it.

In 2003, Street became certified as a Pilates instructor.  Simultaneously, she saw an opportunity in the Manhattan, New York, marketplace.  In 2004, Street opened her business, Uptown Pilates (uptownpilates.com).

Although the first few months were slow, within two years she already had to open another location to handle the demand.  Shortly thereafter, she opened a third location in Sag Harbor, New York.

Alexandra Wolfe wrote a profile piece on Street and her entrepreneurial experience (“Finding Her Form” Bloomberg Businessweek, 7/23/12–7/29/12, p. 76).  Wolfe relays Street’s best advice for any entrepreneur.  In so doing, we find the reality illustrated that entrepreneurs–with the right inspiration–do sometimes succeed because of themselves and even in spite of themselves.

Street’s first point is:

“Trust your (highly toned) gut:  There will be a great deal of doubt and reevaluation as a new business incubates.  However, there will be an epiphany moment when, despite misgivings, you just know it is right.  That is the time to go for it!”

Sometimes, trusting your gut can be a mistake.  We are all human.  Nevertheless, there are those moments when everything about who we are and what we know just screams at us, “Now is the time–just do it!”  I believe when those moments come, we cannot afford to ignore them.

Street’s second point is:

“Don’t overthink it:  I started Uptown Pilates when I was too young to comprehend failure.  I was able to focus on the future opportunity without being saddled with the burden of doubt.  Going into it so doe-eyed enabled an early success.”

The point of not overthinking it is good, but that does not mean being slipshod in your approach and preparation.  It does mean dodging the paralysis of analysis.

Street is an inspiration to us all.  She is a poignant reminder of the paradox: we often succeed because of, and in spite of, ourselves.





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About James Meadows

Currently I serve as a training team manager for Tyco Integrated Security at a customer-care center in Kansas City. Additionally, I am a business consultant, a freelance corporate writer, an Assembly of God ordained minister, a Civil Air Patrol chaplain, a blogger, and a University of Phoenix Associate Faculty member. I believe we are living in the most fascinating times of human history. To maximize the opportunities these times present, I have a passionate interest in leadership development and organizational success, both of which I view as inextricably linked.

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