My Startup Failed and just imploded, and I feel terrible. I’ve disappointed so many people. How will I possibly be able to recover from this when I’ve failed so miserably? What will everyone think?
At the moment when our startup ship is sinking to the bottom of the ocean, everyone has jumped on the life rafts, and we’re wondering what the world will think of us; what goes through our minds? We’ve all run through the same scenarios, whether we fail or not. The only difference is when we fail for real, we get to see what actually happens. We get to see what kind of support we really have and what people will really think about us. But what’s both sad and comforting is how few people will care at all…
My Startup Failed! No One Actually Cares
We’re sitting around thinking that everyone is against us in our minds. Every investor, employee, partner, customer, and even random people we don’t know is sitting around taking turns bashing us. In every one of our social circles, people talk nonsense about us. We’re the butt of jokes and a cautionary tale, right?
People don’t care. And believe me, now, in the aftermath of the recent COVID pandemic, people have become even more self-absorbed and don’t care!
Yes, the people who were told the bad news will be upset for a minute, and then they will go on doing whatever they were going to do all along. We may want to believe that our life situation will forever command the rest of the world’s attention, but as it happens, it won’t. The world is so self-absorbed in their own world (I can write a book about this) that they aren’t wasting their time thinking about what went wrong in your life and with your career. They are on to the next Facebook meme, the next YouTube video, or whatever notification just popped up on their phone.
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My Startup Failed! No One Remembers
Unless we go out in an epic fashion, the reality is that 6 months or a year from now; no one will even remember what we were working on. It’s hard to believe, right?
In a Startup Founder’s mind, we think that our failure will go into the “Startup Failure Hall of Fame” and will be forever remembered in infinite detail. But people don’t work that way. However raw the emotion is right now, it’s only raw for us. Everyone else, even the people that we are connected to, will write this off into a distant memory before we even find out what we’re going to do next.
My Startup Failed! What Matters is What’s Next
While we’re so wrapped up in what happened, we lose sight of what matters, what we are doing next. This is a single chapter in our story, and it’s a crazy chapter, but we’ve got many more to write.
If we want to worry about how we will be remembered, we need to worry about what we’re doing next. It doesn’t have to be another startup (probably a good idea for now); it has to be somewhere else for us to point out attention. People will remember or think about what we tell them is current. It’s our job to make the past the past, and we do that by rewriting the future.