As an entrepreneur, Anna Akbari learned that one of the best things about startups is their ability to “pivot” quickly—basically a euphemism for failing and starting over. And she quickly found that personal success is no different. It’s not just about developing and following the right process but also having a good idea. And that demands rigor and daily maintenance—far beyond a few positive affirmations. Like any Silicon Valley startup, the business of life is not as glamorous as its Instagram account would make it seem.
What do you do when planning is not an option? When control is out of your reach? You isolate the small stuff, experiment constantly, and use the results to lay a more sustainable foundation for the future. You validate your idealized vision by testing it out in bite-sized increments. You see what sticks, integrate, and move forward. And inevitably, you experience a series of failures along the way, but those failures are key to your next success.
Living a start up life is about maximizing flexibility and measuring on-going results, not avoiding failure or reaching one particular end goal. It's about embracing defeat, analyzing it, and failing up. After all, it's often the stumbles that pave the way for real happiness.