When times are tough, it's a lot harder to believe our own bullshit.
Anyone can self-rationalize when there's money in the bank, clients in the pipeline and projects in the works. That's like riding a bicycle downhill and assuming our legs are strong.
But when the phone stops ringing, when the obligations start accumulating, and when we're not sure where the next check is coming from, there's only so much manure we can shovel. Eventually, we have to get radically honest with ourselves about what's working and what's not. And we have to wake up to what's true about ourselves at the risk of seeing something we couldn't see back when business was good.
Otherwise, under the weight of our own delusions -- even if we've managed to convince the rest of the world that everything is going fine -- we'll know the reality. We'll still have to look at ourselves in the mirror every morning.
And it might not be a pretty sight.