Starting your own company is really, really hard. Entrepreneurship is lonely, your odds of making it are slim–and when you do achieve success?

In some ways, the stress of holding on to what you’ve built can be just as significant as the stress of building it in the first place.

In the end, though, building a business is a challenge entrepreneurs willingly embrace.

What about the challenges we never see coming?

What about the challenges we never asked for?

What about an unexpected illness in your family? Or a disease you never saw coming? Or the stress that comes from family in general? What about an unexpected job loss? Or the stress that comes just from scrolling through your newsfeed?

Regardless of the challenges you wake up to, you have two choices:

Or you can let your day attack you.

There is no third option.

You can choose to let your life or your community crumble beneath you, or you can roll up your sleeves and do something about it. You can wonder why everyone else gets the opportunities you wish you had, or you can do whatever it takes to grab a few of those opportunities for yourself. You can lay blame for your challenges at the feet of whoever it is you think is responsible–or you can realize that the first sign of weakness is telling someone else why it’s their fault that your life didn’t turn out the way you hoped.

Last week I had the privilege of attending the Winter Innovation Summit at the Sorenson Impact Center in Salt Lake City, Utah. The focus was on Opportunity Zones. If you are unfamiliar with OZs, the term comes from a provision within the late-2017 tax legislation that encourages investment in economically challenged communities.

Because throughout the event, leader after leader stepped on stage to explain why they refuse to accept the reality they were given, refuse to blame anyone else for their challenges, and instead rolled up their sleeves and got to work.

It was a lesson in what can happen when entire communities attack their day, and it was a lesson all of us should take to heart, regardless of what we do for living.

Our individual challenges can break us, and a collection of broken people creates broken communities, broken societies, and a broken world.

It doesn’t have to be that way.

And it won’t be that way, so long as you attack your day, rather than letting your day attack you.

Published on: Feb 10, 2020

The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.



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PAUL WALKER

PAUL WALKER

Lonely traveler, l like to explore with my camera and my laptop every part of the earth.
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