I think in entrepreneurship, you have to have a certain amount of guts to succeed. You'll almost certainly fail and end up with absolutely nothing at least once or twice. You have to be willing and able to push through. I think the competitive nature of entrepreneurship is absolutely essential, otherwise we'd end up with good ideas that are absolutely horrifying as an end product.
I'm always curious to hear why people decide to pursue a career in entrepreneurship. For me, it's always been a goal, but I used to be terrified to quit my job and start something with no assurance of success. I obviously got over that fear. I ended up reading a book called The Evolution of the American Dream (http://entrepreneurial-america.com) which really inspired me to follow my version of the American Dream. Fellow entrepreneurs - what facilitated your decision? How did you see past the possibility of failure?
There have been several studies done evaluating the happiness of lottery winners after they have experienced the life-changing experience of winning millions of dollars. Surprisingly (and to the point of the article above) the studies show that lottery winners are less happy post-million. One study even found that lottery winners had more difficulty adjusting to their new status than accident victims who became paraplegics.
I read a book recently called "You Never Know" which was inspired by these studies, where the author (http://www.lilianduval.com/) explores the impact of both good luck and bad luck on a person and which elicits the most rewarding experience. It is a fascinating look into human psychology and echoes the view that perhaps rewarding experiences lead to "happier" lives more so than having lots of money or an easy life.
Techdirt has not posted any stories submitted by Justin.