I have this interesting conversation with one of my friends. Let’s call him Jake as he wishes to be anonymous. Jake is a Chef and has plans to quit his job. He has more than 5 years of experiences. But he is not sure whether to take the plunge. Curious, I ask him the reasons and his options available. He did not want to slog in the kitchen for a long period of time and will like to do something different. So, if he plans to advance further in this direction - he can start his own business (specialising in new cuisines), be a private Chef or progress upwards to be Chef de Souza. Possibly, Jake is also able to branch out to other trades like Bartender, Mixologists. Problem is, Jake is worried to take the first step out from his current job.
Here is what he says.
Jake: “I will like to start my own restaurant business. However, it’s tough and challenging.”
He further lamented “You will not understand, Coach. Because you are not in the kitchen. Things are tough here. If I quit and strike out on my own, I think I will fail. Can't introduce new recipes and sell new concepts. Too competitive. Look at restaurants in Singapore. Most can’t survive after some time……furthermore, I don’t know how to promote myself as a Private Chef…”
Seems that there is a mental block in Jake before anything is initiated. Too many “I” and “think”.passion and the need to get answers, rather than assumed scenarios which may not happen in reality.
Falling into the mental obstacles of:
1. He says it’s tough and not easy
2. I think I will fail…
3. Too overly affected by the external environment…most can’t survive…”
4. I don’t know how to promote myself as a Private Chef
Not purposeful. These are psychological barriers that will give him doubts about next steps forward. So, Jake needs to get his mind into shape first.
A possible solution for Jake is to write down positive affirmations and develop his thoughts into constructive processes.
For example, this sentence:
“I will like to start my own restaurant business. However it’s tough and challenging”
“I will like to think about how I can start my own restaurant business. Firstly, I need to identify something special that will attract patrons to dine in.”
See the difference? Jake is able to adjust his state of mind to concentrate where he is able to add unique value that differentiates his business.
“I think I will fail cooking up new recipes”
“I will spend the next 1 month writing down new recipes, trying out exotic flavors and find what works and what doesn’t”
See the difference again?
What this means is that your first reaction should be in a “can-do”, “can-explore” attitude without having the invisible line of negativity immediately. Too often, we shun away from life’s toughest tests. It’s natural for humans. However if you can combat your negative emotions, you may uncover characteristics that you may not know of. I also do understand that it can be difficult in the early stages as we grow with a set of values and experiences, some of which have turn into perceived assumptions, a world of “not possibles”. Therefore, the early affirmation exercise helps.
My second alternative for Jake is to ensure he gets acquainted with a network of people who are superbly encouraging and has values which Jake can leverage. The vibe and energy will influence Jake to explore angles of solutions. Jake may look for people who fit into his weaknesses such as:
A. Forward-looking Planners
B. Action-oriented Builders
C. Industry-trained Marketers
For each group, Jake will gain insights into the future (Planners), how to rollout actionable strategies (Builders) and promote his restaurant concept through different channels (Marketers).
I wish Jake the best of success always.