In “The Tale of Two Wolves,” one is evil, and the other is good. When asked which one wins the battle, the reply is, “The one you feed.” That same analogy applies to Entrepreneurship.
If we want it to grow, we must nurture it—no ifs, ands, or buts about it. IT MUST BE FED! And there is no better place to start than with those who hold the key to the future— our youth.
So, what we are really talking about here is SURVIVAL. I am certain we can all see how vital young entrepreneurship is to the successful survival of humanity.
What does it mean to nurture?
When you hear the word “nurture,” what comes up? Is it a mother with a newborn? Is it a beautiful rose garden? What about an idea, a business, or a mindset? The latter may not have popped into our minds, but what if we took that same care that a mother gives to her newborn or a gardener to those precious blooms and use it to cultivate entrepreneurship amidst the young people of today? How would that shape our society? What generational shifts could we expect to take place? How much further ahead could we be in the race to cure cancer, end hunger, or homelessness?
Here are a few tips for nurturing that young entrepreneurial mindset.
1. Support Their Beliefs
“Whether you think you can or whether you think you can’t, you’re right” – Henry Ford. This is as true today as it ever was. At some point in life, we all needed someone to believe in us. We needed someone to support us—someone to say, “I believe in you.” Those four little words can literally work miracles in mind. Oftentimes it is the belief of others that provides the fuel needed just to keep moving–keep trying. We can believe in others before they even believe in themselves. Young entrepreneurs need support rather than criticism or ridicule. The entrepreneurial journey will be difficult enough; a good, strong support system is paramount. We need more people to be that support system! Young entrepreneurs will someday be the backbone of society.
2. Encourage Letting Go of Status Quo
Oftentimes, there is a desire to fit in: wear the same clothes, speak the same slang, and binge on the same shows. TikTok videos aren’t likely to encourage entrepreneurial growth. There must be a willingness to step outside the comfort zone. Rather than obsessing over the actors and actresses on different shows, encourage them to start living their own dream. Don’t get me wrong, all of that is fine–in moderation. But entrepreneurs think differently. Read “How Successful People Think” by John Maxwell. They value their time differently. They associate with different types of people. The youths need encouragement to let go of the status quo and venture out on their own.
3. Motivate Them to Move!
Now, this one is good for all of us, regardless of age. It is not necessary to have the entire journey mapped out. Jump in the car and start driving! Take a swing around that one block—just get moving! We see things along the way that we wouldn’t have if we waited for the whole entrepreneurial journey to unfold. All we need to see is the few feet right in front of us. Motivate the young minds to move! They may have more time, but the world is moving and rapidly changing.
4. Make Mental Maintenance Priority
Like that newborn mentioned in the beginning, he/she must be fed, cared for, and loved. This too applies not only to the youth. Have a daily mental maintenance plan that is non-negotiable. Nurture the mind with positivity and gratitude. Things like journaling, meditation, and reading are good for mental maintenance. In addition, set aside time to research and study your area of expertise. Nurture and use the brain, and time, wisely. This is especially important for the young people of today. It has been a crazy year or so, with lots of anxiety and fear. These future entrepreneurs need to appreciate the importance of self-care. Mental maintenance must be a priority for the health of the young entrepreneur.
AND MOST IMPORTANTLY—DON’T GIVE UP!!!
Be in it to win it for the long haul.
And this applies to ALL.
There is absolutely no question of the importance of nurturing the entrepreneurial mindset. This generation and those to come are dependent upon the young entrepreneurs of today. Alex Banayan talks about that “Third Door” in his amazing book; we as a people must keep it open. By encouraging and nurturing that entrepreneurial mindset amidst the young people of today, we do just that!