The truth is, we tell ourselves we don’t know what we’re doing, we don’t know how to attract clients, we’re not good at selling, and we’re confused about how to take the next steps. But just because we tell ourselves we’re confused doesn’t mean we don’t have options for moving forward. So, in this episode, I’m showing you why you aren’t as confused as you currently believe, and why this is all just the journey of entrepreneurship.
Tune in this week to discover a new way to look at your confusion. I’m sharing why confusion doesn’t mean anything about you and what you have to offer as an entrepreneur, and what you can do to see that you have the resources to find a solution, just like you do in your work as a physician.
Hi docs, welcome to The EntreMD Podcast, where it’s all about helping amazing physicians just like you embrace entrepreneurship so you can have the freedom to live life and practice medicine on your terms. I’m your host, Dr. Una.
Well, hello, hello, my friends. Welcome back to another episode of The EntreMD Podcast. As always, I am super pumped to be in your ears. I want to say a big shout out to everyone who has written us a review. You are part of the cavalry who is changing medicine because people read those, it helps the algorithm get really happy and show our podcast to other doctors. And you are literally changing medicine.
So if you’re listening and haven’t had an opportunity to review or to share, if I could ask you for a favor, please review, please share. There are a million physicians and in the EntreMD world our goal is to reach 100,000 of them and help them build profitable businesses so they can live life and practice medicine on their terms. Of course, I cannot do that by myself, but together we can, all right?
So today I wanted to talk about how to deal with confusion. How to deal with confusion, and I bring this up because as entrepreneurs this comes up a lot. I talk to entrepreneurs a lot, of course. The EntreMD Business School, we have served over 200 physicians and we have over 100 in the school currently and I do weekly sessions with them. I do orientations, special orientations for the new cohorts and stuff like that.
So I talk a lot to physicians. And one of the things that comes up a lot is oh, I’m confused, or oh, my business is a mess, or I don’t really know what I’m doing. And when I talk with them, within 60 seconds I can take what they’re saying, reframe it and show it back to them. And they’re like, oh. I’m like, yeah, you’re not half as confused as you think you are, right?
And that comes up a lot. And it came up a lot for me where I’m like, I don’t really know what I’m doing. And it will come up at any stage, like I don’t know how to attract the clients, I’m not good at asking them to work with me. I’m confused about this podcast thing, I’m confused about the profit and loss statement, I’m confused about how to hire and all of that kind of stuff.
I thought there was something wrong with me. I thought I was a bad entrepreneur, I was not a competent entrepreneur and all the things, right? And then I started going in bigger and bigger rooms. And so I started going in rooms full of entrepreneurs and I noticed that it looks like everybody’s having the same experience that I’m having.
I started going to rooms with successful entrepreneurs, so six figure businesses, seven figure businesses, and when they raise their hands to be coached, you’re like, “You have that business and you’re this confused?” Like “confused,” right? And I’m like, man, maybe I’m normal.
And then the highlight of it was when I started going to these rooms where to get in at all you had to have to have brought in seven figures in the last 12 months. And that’s when I realized that this is not real confusion, this is the journey of an entrepreneur.
And so when you have somebody who is running $100 million business talk about how, oh, I don’t know how to do this. And so how do I handle this hire? Or what do you do with your mindset when you’re dealing with this situation? And I’m like, hmm, even at 100 million it doesn’t go away.
So I want to invite you to look at confusion very differently. Like when you feel like you’re confused, you’re unsure and all of that, I want you to look at it very differently. I want you to look at it as a normal process of an entrepreneur.
And so that that way you don’t let it throw you off, you don’t let it make it mean anything about you like you’re a bad entrepreneur, you don’t know what you’re doing, or any of that. Because this is the way of an entrepreneur. An entrepreneur is a person who solves problems, and they solve problems for people and they solve problems for themselves in the process of building their businesses.
Entrepreneurs solve problems. And wherever there are problems it will seem like there’s confusion and all of that, but we’re really good at walking into chaos and walking into confusing situations and building something beautiful out of it, right?
And so someone may listen to, for instance, a highlight reel of the EntreMD Business School. So the EntreMD Business School recently turned two, which is a sobering moment for me, really that’s the way it played out. But I think about it, it started when I wasn’t fully ready. I was almost embarrassed. I was like Emory has a business school, Harvard has a business school, and Dr. Una has a business school. What a joke, right?
And I didn’t let that stop me, right? I couldn’t figure out Kajabi. I had somebody who works in Kajabi come join the team like a week before we launched the EntreMD Business School and kind of put the membership site together and all of that. I didn’t even know that, right? There were so many things I didn’t know, but I still started it, right?
And then so we started and the very first time I opened it 22 doctors signed up. So 22 doctors signed up and then we started the journey. And I was like, so how do I lead the 22? How do I help them get bigger results? How do I get a team on board to help me? How do I, it was how do I, how do I? It was just one thing after the other.
But it’s been two years and we’ve gone on to serve over 200 doctors, and we’ve gone on to make such a difference, not just in the businesses of the doctors who are part of the business school, but in their personal lives, right? Because the way you do one thing is the way you do everything. And we built such a phenomenal community, there’s no way I could have seen that coming, and all of that.
And so I’m saying that to say even in the midst of all the confusion over the two years, when you look at the highlight reel, we built something really beautiful. And I’m saying that to say, don’t let the confusion stop you, don’t let it mean something like what I’m doing is not good, or I’m not good as an entrepreneur. Embrace it all, okay?
So I want to give you kind of three steps I use to navigate through that. So yes, there is “confusion.” Yes, there’s uncertainty. Yes, it feels like it’s a mess. It feels like I’m not sure what I’m doing and all of that, but I still accomplished what I set out to accomplish and actually surpassed what I set out to accomplish, okay? So let’s look at that.
The first thing is to recognize it as a normal part of entrepreneurship. You are not abnormal. One of the things that happens a lot in the business school, especially when we do live events, so like our retreats. One of the things that happens there is that people are like, “Wait a minute, this is normal. All these experiences that I thought were bad, and it meant I’m not good at this stuff, it meant I should quit, it’s actually normal.”
I remember our very first vision retreat in person, it was in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina and people would come up and the thing about it is that we’re open about trials and triumphs. So it’s not a strange, unreal positivity, that’s not what happens there. People share really challenging challenges and share their really big wins.
And so when we got there, people were talking like, you know, this is the challenge I was having, and this is where it ended up and all of that stuff. And a doctor got up and she’s like, “Wait a minute, I’ve been looking at you guys like you guys are the real entrepreneurs. And I’m like, you know, I’m a fake, I’m a wannabe, I’m an imposter and all that. And to think that you all have the same stuff, same drama I have, like all of you.” She was like, “Oh my goodness, I should lean into this then.”
And I mean it’s been almost two years at this point but it’s something that really stuck with me because that’s the truth. It is normal. It is not abnormal for you to feel, “Wow, this is a mess.” It is not abnormal for you to feel, “I’m not sure of what I’m doing.” It’s not abnormal, you’re an entrepreneur, okay? There’s a little bit of chaos, and confusion, and messiness that goes with it and this is normal.
Same like the process of having a baby, okay? That’s how L&D is. L&D is a place that can be really noisy, there can be fluids everywhere and all of that kind of stuff. But a beautiful baby comes out of that. You see what I’m saying? And so I want you to recognize it as it’s normal, okay? It’s normal.
Now, does that mean don’t go after the knowledge you need? No, you’re going to attempt to fix it, you’re going to go like, “Okay, what do I need to know? What do I need to do?” And all that. So you’re going to respond to it, but I want you to recognize that happening in your business, that happening in your life as an entrepreneur, that is normal. That’s normal. So that’s the first thing.
The second thing is in the midst of all that “chaos and confusion,” and all of that stuff, and you think about all the things you need to do and all the things you don’t know how to do and all of that, in the midst of that you want to go like, “What is my next step?” You’re one human being who has 24 hours a day. And no matter what you discover, you can’t do all of them right away, right?
You can’t do all of them right away. And so what that means is one of the best things you can do is develop this muscle of in the midst of that going, “What is my next step? What is the next thing that I need to do that will move the needle, that will resolve this?”
And so you may be sitting in confusion because you’re like, I built this business, it grew faster than I wanted it to. Now I’m working so much harder and I don’t know what to do. Things are falling out of place, things are falling through the cracks and all of that. Well, it seems like your next step may be to hire a team member to take things off your plate, or to look at your processes and tweak some of them and make them more efficient so you get some of your time back.
So you don’t have to do everything, you need to zero in and do that, right? You need to do one thing. You don’t have to do everything. And you might say but I don’t even know how to do that. Well, then you can learn how to do that and that becomes your next step.
So in the midst of all these things, what I need to do is I need to figure out how to hire one team member, this critical position that will make a huge difference in my business. You learn how to do it and you’re golden, right?
So you’re going to identify what is that next step? Overwhelmed because I started this business and nobody knows about it. And I’ve been posting on social media, and I’ve been releasing podcast episodes, and still nobody knows about it, nobody has any interest. And then you have to identify your next step. What is the problem? The problem is that your business is obscure.
Where are the people that are going to use your services? Or the people who will subscribe to your podcast and comment on your social media stuff and become clients and all of that stuff, where are they? They’re out there. And so your next step is to put yourself out there.
That could be being a guest on someone’s podcast. That could be going to speak at somebody’s event. That could be going to a networking event. That could be doing a joint IG live or Facebook Live. That could be telling the people in your life, “Hey, I started this business, if you know anybody who needs these services, please send them my way.”
Those are the things and you’re like, okay, well, let me just do those things, right? You don’t have to stay confused, you don’t have to stay overwhelmed. You don’t have to do any of that. You identify what is the next step? There may be 100 steps, but I’m going to do these steps one step at a time, so what is the next step?
And the third thing, it will sound so weird that I will say it, but the third thing is to then do it. Don’t talk about it, don’t make Facebook memes about it, don’t think about it, don’t just write it in your journal, do it. Do it. The steps you take that are the next steps you should take are the things that get you out of that place of confusion or help you make progress in the midst of it.
Things don’t have to be perfect. It doesn’t have to be all together. When you’re like, well, so I know the next thing I need to do is to go be a guest on a podcast so I’m going to go take a whole course on speaking. Oh my goodness, go get the podcast spot already. And do an excellent job. What does excellent mean? The best you can with the resources you have.
And so I’ve done a lot of podcast episodes on how to prepare to deliver a great talk, how to create a good talk and all of those kinds of things. Go listen to them, listen to people on podcast episodes, fine tune your stories and all of that, and then just go do a really good job of it. Really good job of it, right? And then take it from there.
The first one you do will be the worst, and then they’ll just start getting better from there. But the idea is you cannot do a perfect one, you can only perfect it, which means you do one, make it better, do one, make it better, do another one, make it better, right? Now this may sound really simple but this is one of the things that will make you an entrepreneur who has momentum, an entrepreneur who has results, an entrepreneur who enjoys the process.
When I started my first business, my private practice, I was constantly living in that place of I don’t know what I’m doing. The other entrepreneurs are better than me. Who would want to follow me? Who would want to be on this team? Who would want to be my client? I lived in that space.
And because of that it was kind of like having a baby and you’re like, oh my goodness, the baby looks at me cross eyed, the baby poops in a diaper, the baby spits up so you don’t take any pictures. You don’t enjoy that process. You’re just like, oh, I can’t wait for him to be a cardio thoracic surgeon. That’s kind of how I treated my first business.
And so I don’t have any documented, well, I have some documented milestones now. But I didn’t document milestones. I didn’t celebrate the many firsts. The first time I saw five patients in a day, the first time I had a full schedule, the first time I hired an MA, the first time we moved to a new building, the first time we hit 100,000.
I didn’t celebrate any of that because I was so busy being upset by the fact that I was confused and unsure and all of that stuff. And you know that, if you’ve listened to my episode on how I handle regret, I don’t do regret. You know what I mean? And so what am I doing here? I went through that for years, and I’m trying to spare you that. And I’m like enjoy the journey, right?
Don’t let the confusion mean anything. That is the path of an entrepreneur. I have so many friends, so many contacts in my world who are doing multiple, multiple seven figures, eight figures, on their way to nine figures. They are all dealing with it, it doesn’t go away. The reward for fixing problems in your business is new problems.
So this thing doesn’t go away. So the sooner you learn how to handle it and be okay in the midst of it, the better for you, right? Because you may think, if you’re starting up you may feel like, oh, my business is so complicated, how do I get to 100,000? Well, the person who is building a multiple seven figure business is like, “Oh my goodness, this is so complicated. How do I build a C suite?” It doesn’t go away.
So recognize that it’s normal. Identify what your next step is, this is critical. Be that person who is like, in the midst of all of this, in the midst of all the things I don’t know, what’s the next thing I do?
So the example of the person who needs to build a C suite, you need to find a mentor who’s done a C suite or a program where they will teach you how to do that. And you make a quality commitment that it’s going to be uncomfortable, it may even hurt, but I’m going to do everything they tell me, right? That’s kind of the way that works. That’s your decision, right? That’s your decision.
So what is my next step? And then you take the next step. It won’t feel comfortable, like all of that. But the sooner you get to that point where you’re like, this is the way it goes, the sooner you can enjoy your journey with all the chaos, with all the confusion, just like L&D, just like labor and delivery and the outcome is a beautiful baby, your business.
All right. So I want you to take a moment, I want you to think about the thing that in your business right now you’re either confused about, you’re not sure how to do it, you’re not sure how to go about it, all of that stuff. I want you to take one thing, pick a thing. And you’re like, okay, I recognize that this is normal. People who are startups experience it, people who are on their way to 100 million experience it, and beyond, they experience it. So number one, this is normal, nothing’s wrong with me.
Number two, hmm, so what is my next step? What is the next thing that I need to do? Identify that and then schedule it, get it done. If you can get it done today, get it done. Just get it done so you can move on to the next confusing thing and fix that too, right? And so do that.
And the idea is this makes you a person who, you end up enjoying your journey as an entrepreneur, you are always moving forward, you’re always in momentum, right? So granted some faster than others, but you’re always in momentum. And, yeah, that will be so good. Imagine that. You are an entrepreneur, you enjoy the journey and you’re always moving forward. So good.
So that’s what I have for you. And I have a favor to ask of you, I know I did this at the beginning, but this is actually serious. For this episode, anybody you know who’s a physician entrepreneur or wants to start their journey as a physician entrepreneur, please share this episode with them. Because what you’ll be doing is you’ll be helping somebody go through their 20 year career as an entrepreneur enjoying it, versus having a really hard time with it. Really, really hard time with it.
So you will be saving entrepreneurs by sharing this episode. So share it and you do your homework, and I will see you on the next episode of The EntreMD Podcast.
Hey, if you love listening to The EntreMD Podcast I want to invite you to join EntreMD On Demand. It is my signature subscription program that gives you access to a library of business courses designed to help you do one thing as a physician entrepreneur, and that is to thrive. Just head out to entremd.com/ondemand and I’d love to have you join us. See you on the inside.