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For most of us, 2020 was a brutal year. I’m hopeful that 2021 will be better, but it’s going to be a slow improvement, likely with many false starts and surprises.

So how do we remain optimistic in an environment like this? It’s about the learning.

Challenges, problems and failures provide a richer learning environment than when things go well. I find that a bit annoying, but it’s true. It’s about being observant and thoughtful despite the emotional turmoil of things not going according to plan.

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We laid my mother to rest recently. Given that it’s 2020, we weren’t able to have a proper funeral, and had a short outdoor service with extended family on Zoom.

It wasn’t the ideal. But you know what? It was plenty good, and respected everyone’s limitations.

That’s what this whole year has been about. Making the best of what we have. And if you think about it, this is nothing new. We’re always making tradeoffs.

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No doubt you’ve heard the term that’s been in vogue with entrepreneurs for a few years: Pivot your business.

Photo by Jeremy Perkins on Unsplash

As a skeptical outsider, it looks like an excuse for someone getting bored, who can’t commit to the hard work of building and running a company. And there is some truth to that.

But it’s not the whole story.

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There are many times in business where it feels like you don’t know where you’re going. Employee issues. Customers giving you grief.

It just feels like the formula isn’t working anymore.

So what do you do when it feels like a need for change somehow?

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