You can be on Entrepreneur’s cover!

Lessons from a Serial Entrepreneur

By Kushal M. Choksi

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.


We entrepreneurs are an irrational bunch. Who else in their right mind would choose a path with a probabilistic expected value realization of close to zero? The entrepreneurial journey often gets painful. Lonely. You realize very quickly that life doesn't owe you anything. And knowing all of this, some of us still go back right to it, wearing a badge on the sleeve that reads "serial entrepreneur'. Logically this makes little sense!

I was triggered to become an entrepreneur after I survived 9/11 attacks in New York. I felt that life was too short to be playing safe after getting a new lease on life. I left my promising Wall Street career with the top investment bank to join a nondescript startup. Over a period of time, one failed startup and two successful exits later, I still can't claim to have hacked the code of entrepreneurship entirely, but I've picked up a few learnings along the way that I wouldn't trade for anything.

The loser is the winner

It is a game of losing. Losing your fear of the unknown. Losing your false sense of control. Losing your attachment to perfection. It is the game of losing all the noise, till you can hear your own heartbeat. Losing all those also-ran ideas, till you meet that one that refuses to go. In this game, the seeker is a finder. The loser is the winner.

Get out of your own way

As humans we are programmed to label ourselves. I am good at A. I can't do B etc. While it's important to play to one's strengths, we often become the scapegoats of our own conditioning. This results into holding back one's self, not taking enough risk for the fear of failure, and validation-seeking behavior that has never helped any entrepreneur.

Everyone's path is different.

In this non-deterministic game of survival, there are no definitive formulae that apply. External circumstances and all other background parameters like personal finances, relationship status, age etc. are laid out uniquely by nature for each one of us. Respect your reality and take a leap.

Market research has its place. In a bin.

All the studies, surveys, and research suffer from a strictly backward looking bias. When you believe in yourself and in your product, you have the power to create the need. Your passion supports you until your product finds the right market. The past few years of running an artisanal chocolate company has been one of the highlights of my journey. However, if I had relied on market research for a go/no go decision, I would have never gone for it.

Listen to your most underrated organ. The gut.

We are trained to think logically. But logic is only limited to what we know. And what we know is limited. So, relying on logic entirely would be like driving while looking in the rear-view mirror. That's where the gut instinct or intuition comes in play. Time is a scarce commodity and intuition can help save a lot of it. A refined intuition is a lubricant against the massive friction that one experiences when starting anything new.

Dorothy was right. There is no place like home.

Put yourself on your to-do list. We entrepreneurs are good at justifying why we have time for everything but ourselves. I benefited immensely from my practice of mediation and breathwork. Just taking out a few minutes to connect with ourselves every day makes a huge difference in how we show up for everything else that we do. An arrow must be pulled back before it tears forward.

Entrepreneurship after all is nothing but a dance on the edge of a sword. A delicate balance between passion and dispassion. Being uncomfortable with being comfortable and being comfortable with being uncomfortable.

Kushal M. Choksi

Author & Entrepreneur


One Factor Is Helping This Entrepreneur Tackle Business Ownership Later in Life. Now, She's Jumping Into a $20 Billion Industry.

Stacey Howell has reinvented herself multiple times. In her latest move, she leverages her extensive corporate career, history of public service and experience running a nonprofit as a Woodhouse Spa franchisee.

Business News

A Look Inside the Company That Is Making $500 Million a Year Serving Italian Beef Sandwiches Made Famous by 'The Bear'

Portillo's CEO Michael Osanloo shares his secret to keeping hungry customers coming back again and again. (Hint: It requires a lot of napkins.)


This Is the Framework You Need to Create a Brand Worth Your Customers' Loyalty and Make More Money Doing It

The first impression your customers will get of your business in this day and age is your website — so it needs to be created with intent. Here's how to use compelling storytelling on your website and one specific framework to capture their attention.

Growing a Business

Stanford Professors On the Counterintuitive Strategy That Helps Google Hire Top Talent

We assume that the best processes are seamless, but a little friction can go a long way.

Making a Change

New Users Can Take 20% off Lifetime Access to Babbel for a Limited Time

Take a lifetime to learn as many as 14 languages by using code ENJOY20 for an affordable subscription that could boost your business.

Side Hustle

How to Get the Most Money Out of Your Side Hustle During Tax Season, From an Expert Who Raised $75.2 Million to Make Filing Easier

Lauren Myrick started Found to solve the common problems she saw small business owners face.