Do you ever feel like a failure in business? Watch this video.

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Hi guys, I’m Lou, co-founder of Reliable PSD, and today I’m going to share with you some advice on what to do when you’re feeling like you’re not good enough or like you’re a failure in your business.

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Note: The text found in this post is the transcript of the video above.

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Now, this is a topic I’ve wanted to talk about for a really long time, because I feel like SO many of us face it and struggle with it, and it’s really a challenging thing to deal with.

I know for me, and a lot of other entrepreneurs and business owners that I’ve spoken to, that message of “you’re not good enough” really comes out when you do decide to carve that path for yourself for and find your own way in this world, live by your own rules. Oftentimes people just don’t get that. Your family doesn’t get that. It’s a big risk. Especially compared to going to college and becoming a doctor or a lawyer and choosing what is seen as a much more stable path in life. 

I experienced that pretty intensely especially with my grandmother when David, my partner and husband, and I decided to leave college to start our creative agency Unexpected Ways 8 years ago. 

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She was absolutely devastated when I told her that and while I love her very much and I did understand her concern, the underlying message I was getting was: “the path that feels right to you in your heart, in your gut, is not good enough, and it’s not worth taking any risks for, and you should not listen to that. You should stay in college and get a degree and that’s that.” 

Interestingly, no matter what level of success I’ve achieved, her tune really didn’t change. Even 8 years later after Unexpected Ways became established and successful, after we created our second company Reliable PSD, and that company became successful and even grew to over 20 employees, in one of our latest conversations, my grandma suggested to me that I go back to school and get a degree in web development. 

But I think that’s so much part of the reason, where no matter what level of success we achieve, what milestones that we have for ourselves we cross, there’s always that little voice there in the back of your head just gnawing at you saying “you’re not enough.” I know I go through periods where I struggle with that, and when that’s what you’re feeling any tiny little mistake you make or anything at all that you can perceive as failure is so devastating.

And that’s also why you can be a billionaire, and from the outside your life can seem absolutely perfect, but on the inside you still feel exactly the same. 

So what do we do with this feeling? How do we change it? 

Today, I have two messages for you: 

The first one, is that you are enough exactly as you are. There’s nothing you have to prove to anyone, even if you didn’t take any risk or get any accomplishment for the rest of your life from this point forward, YOU ARE GOOD ENOUGH, exactly as you are. 

All the things you accomplish, and succeed in and grow, are all just an added bonus to the base fact that you are good enough just for being you and for absolutely no other reason in the world. 

The second thing that really helps with this feeling is this: 

First, you have to start recognizing this voice that’s telling you all of these terrible things about yourself and comparing you to other people and just making you feel awful. And once you’ve recognized it, it really helps to show this part of yourself compassion. This is really hard to do because we’re so not used to showing compassion to ourselves. So something that really helps with that, is to imagine if your best friend, or a person you really care about in your life, came to you and told you all of the things you’re telling yourself at that moment with that critical voice. What would you say to them?

Like if my best friend came to me and said, “I feel like such a failure, like nothing I do is good enough, like I’ll never be a real success,” I’d tell them in a heart beat: 

Are you kidding me? You’re amazing! Look how dedicated you are, look how much you’ve accomplished and all the things you do every day, look how much you care about the people around you. 

Yet when that voice in me says “Ugh, you’re such a failure,” my reaction is, “You’re right!” 

How messed up is that?

So close your eyes for a moment and say those things to yourself that you’d say to someone else you care about. It really makes a difference.

I know at first it might seems strange or weird, but trust me, this really does work. And if you do it enough times it really helps change that inner dialogue that you’re constantly having with yourself and make it a much more positive one. And it also helps ground your feeling of worth and value, just in your own being, just in being you, as opposed to that feeling being based in accomplishments or successes or things that you do in your life. 

Alright guys, I hope that this video was helpful for you. I feel so strongly that this topic is so important and I’d love to continue the conversation about it with you guys below in the comments, so let me know your thoughts, how you feel about this, if this is something you’ve struggled with before or experienced, and I will catch you next time. 

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About Lou Levit

Lou (Louisa) Levit is the co-founder of creative agency Unexpected Ways, as well as the co-founder of Reliable PSD: a web development partner for freelancers, agencies, and companies in HTML and Wordpress coding. She lives in Portland, Oregon with her lovely husband and biz partner, David Tendrich.

More about Lou’s business: Reliable PSD is what happened when a group of designers got fed up with the available web development and design to code solutions out there…and created their own. Check them out, and see why Hundreds of agencies & freelancers love having Reliable as their partner for HTML & Wordpress coding.

Leave a Comment



  1. Lou,
    I too have struggled with that voice telling me I’m not good enough, I’m ALWAYS concerned my work is going to “dry up”. I haven’t signed a new client in a month! My mind races to the spot where it tells me that I must be doing something wrong if I’m not getting new work. I really needed that message today.


    • Hey Mike!

      Thanks so much for sharing. I totally get that and I’m so glad this message could help you today 🙂

      Sometimes the universe gives us a much needed break and then we get more work than know what to do with! 🙂


  2. Thumbs Up! Enjoyed the video.

    I have also stated a dialog in my head that says, “Embrace Failure.”

    This allows me to learn to correct my mistakes for the Stormy Times.

    • Hey Rich!

      Thanks so much for your comment. That is a great dialogue to have as well! Thanks for the great suggestion :-).

      Have a great day!

  3. Thanks for the video! It helps to get through some of those tough days.

  4. Thanks Lou . I was so much doubting myself that I was seriously considering going back to working for someone else. Listening to you lifted my spirit; I will stick to my guns and continue being self employed. Vero

    • Wow Vero! That’s AMAZING! I am so happy for you and so humbled my words had such an impact. Yes, stick to your guns. You are awesome and you are worth it!


  5. Really glad to have watched this. Thank you, Lou. I hope you continue sending messages like this. It’s encouraging. 🙂

    • Thank you so much for your comment Charity! It really means a lot to me to hear the impact as my goal with these videos is to really help and inspire as much as I can 🙂

      Talk soon!

  6. Great video with wonderful words of wisdom and encouragement. I’ve always felt that people older than Millenials were brought up to believe that you graduate from high school; you then go to college or go to the military; get a job with an established corporation or big stable company; and then you draw a paycheck & get benefits until your retire or die (not to mention all of those other expectations). So, when I started my own design company, I was faced with extreme criticism from close relatives and friends. Fortunately, I had a few that believed in me. But the harsh words from the ones closest to me really hurt me. But thankfully I kept on, even through setbacks & negative-speak. I still feel encouraged and I thank you for your words of encouragement.

    • Hey Audra!

      Thanks so much for your comment. I’m so glad the video made you feel encouraged – that’s exactly what I was hoping for :-).

      I totally agree with you – I do think that has been ‘society’s standard’ for a long time, but I think (and am hoping) that the world is awakening and culturally we are seeing more and more people take charge of their lives saying “my life is MY life” and really living how they want to live, doing what they are passionate about.

      The harsh words do hurt the most from those closest to you, but I’m so glad you stuck with it and here you are today! 🙂

      Talk soon,

  7. Thanks for the Video Lou. I’ve been really struggling with this of late. Tried to ignore the feeling and push on but it’s just grown and started spilling over into everyday life. Your video helped so much. Just knowing it’s not just me, that it’s a common thing others who start a business go through has made me feel better.

    And the tell yourself what you would tell a friend trick is a great idea! Have been doing it. 🙂

    Thank you

  8. Your words came to me at the right time! Thanks a lot!


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