As we begin to take strides to re-open our economy, entrepreneurs and small business owners must get their heads back in the game. The last few months have been extremely tumultuous and it’s been the greatest test that many of you have ever had to face. However, you’re still standing, so it’s time to gear up for a fight. And the first step along the journey is for you to get in the right mindset.

There are four main things that you need to check off the list when it comes to building a successful mentality going into life after lockdown: tempering the ego, openly seeking knowledge, ridding negativity, and developing a killer instinct. If you haven’t checked these things off your list, you probably want to take a step back and work on these things before you dive headfirst back into the business.

Balancing Ego

It’s joked that ego is an invisible line item on every start-up’s profit and loss statement. But it’s no laughing matter when an entrepreneur puts their own priorities and self-esteem before the needs of their start-up. To keep it simple, don’t be an arrogant know-it-all looking to only do what’s best for you instead of looking at the greater good of your company. An inflated, pathological ego will get in the way of your objectivity, skew your perspective, and sabotage your efforts for success sooner or later. However, you have to keep in mind that everything in life is a balancing act. Ego is a double-edged sword, therefore entrepreneurs need a healthy ego to succeed. This is what allows you to believe in yourself. Otherwise, you’ll lack the confidence in your ability to rebuild your business back up. While recent circumstances have been more than enough to humble you, remember that winners in all fields are confident in their ability to achieve their ideals. When the ego is kept in perspective and used to complement our skill-sets, our knowledge, and our goals, it can be a powerful, positive force. So find a way to strike a good balance and move forward in confidence, not cockiness.

Knowledge is Key

Hopefully, you spent a lot of time during this lockdown to seek knowledge because knowledge is going to be key in regaining your footing as you get your business back up and running. Please understand that getting things going won’t be as simple as 1, 2, 3. If you’re going into this reboot thinking “my company was making money; therefore, I must know what I’m doing,” it’s going to be a recipe for disaster if it isn’t backed up with actual knowledge and experience. Sure, you can go off of pure instinct, however, knowledge is the essence of the subconscious that drives that instinct. Don’t fall for the misconception that you inherently know exactly what to do because you’ll be leading yourself down a dark hole. Even in those moments where gut feelings have led you to success in the past were driven by the knowledge that you had soaked in and had stored in the back of your brain. As the leader of your business, it’s going to be up to you to drive life back into your operations, and leadership requires a lot of practical knowledge and savvy. If you’re left feeling like you have no clue where to go from here, invest the time to hire smart people that intimidate you with their knowledge, drive, and passion to help lead the way.

Detox from Negative People

Negativity spreads like wildfire, therefore if you’re not surrounded by the right people, you’re setting yourself up for failure. You know, they say you’re an average of the people you spend the most time with. So if you spend all your time with people who lack drive, ambition, confidence, and knowledge, you’re bringing down your own value. Not to mention, negative energy transfers and will have you feeling down without even realizing the reason why. That’s why it’s important to pay attention to who you’re with when you feel the best. Also, be mindful of those who continued to try to find the silver lining throughout this epidemic. People who think more in terms of turning a negative outcome into a positive potential have a much better chance of riding out the rough times. Those are the people you want to keep around as you push forward past this global crisis. Trust me when I say, building your business back up is going to take hard work, confidence, and a positive mindset. Detox your surroundings and prevent those negative people from keeping you down.

Capitalist Instinct

As I’ve said once before and I’ll go on to say it again, capitalism is what drives success. Not because it makes you a lot of money, but because it gives you access to freedom. Now that these government restrictions are starting to be uplifted, it’s time for that capitalist instinct to thrive. As a capitalist, you use your knowledge, you use your resources and you get down in the trenches and you figure out how to make things work. That’s exactly what needs to happen as you rebuild. Let’s not forget that you have survived the major blow that COVID-19 bestowed upon us. You didn’t just lie there and get steam-rolled. You put up a tough fight thus far to support you, your family, and everyone associated with your business. You tapped into your resources, you got creative, you adapted and you pressed on to find a way to keep some sort of capital flowing in. Don’t let up now. The fact that you have made it this far through a global pandemic shows that you have that killer capitalist instinct flowing through your veins. Now that the gloves are off, it’s time to really harness in that capitalist drive and unleash it on to the world.

The uphill battle that you are about to face won’t be easy by any means. It’s going to take a lot of patience, drive, support and a strong mindset to take on the road ahead of you. You can improve your odds of success by not becoming a slave to your ego, absorbing every bit of knowledge that you can, surrounding yourself with positive people, and using capitalism to propel you beyond any force that stands in your way. So before you dive back in and grind it out to the finish line, make sure your mind is in the right space. After all, the mind is your most powerful tool.

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Written by

Ziad K. Abdelnour, Wall Street financier, trader and author is President & CEO of Blackhawk Partners, Inc., a private family office that backs accomplished operating executives in growing their businesses both organically and through acquisitions and trades physical commodities – mostly oil derivatives – throughout the world.