We always tend to celebrate entrepreneurs for all of their greatness; but we don’t think about the other side to entrepreneurship, the side that unless you are on a journey yourself, you wouldn’t even begin to think of. Have you ever asked your entrepreneur friends how they are feeling? Or celebrated them making it through a bad day?
Yes, we see our friends winning and we support that, but before we start on my journey; let me start by telling you about the REAL journey!
When I first made the decision to be my own boss, I remember being SO excited. I had a ton of ideas running around in my mind, I couldn’t sleep. I was obsessed with the idea of how I was going to better my life. However, then your expectations don’t live up to your realities and you come to a sudden crash. People who you were sure would support you, don’t and very few share the same excitement as you. Welcome to phase one.
This first phase is an emotional rollercoaster, you will start to doubt your own abilities just because someone has questioned them, just because someone hasn’t understood your end goal or just because you have come across some haters or a hurdle. I won’t lie, it took me a very long time to snap myself out of this phase, I think it had a lot to do with my current circumstances and the mind frame they were putting me in at the time; but that’s a story for another blog post. The most important thing to remember when you get to this phase though, is your why. WHY are you on this journey? WHY do you want to succeed? WHY did you start? Your why will always drive your passion.
Don’t let people not supporting you or sharing the same enthusiasm as you hold you back. I’ve come to realise that a lot of people that know you don’t support you because they don’t know the “entrepreneur” you, so they will sit back and watch the ride and then jump in when they see you are successful. I’ve seen many of my fellow entrepreneurs go through this exact phase. You will feel like they are waiting for you to fail, but don’t let that stop you. I promise you the people that don’t believe in you now, will be the ones that boast about you to everyone when you’ve made it. Unfortunately, you will lose these people along the way, I’ve lost quite a few myself.
The journey itself is EXHAUSTING! No one tells you when you sign up to this lifestyle that you will make yourself feel so uncomfortable, it will feel like you are dying; but if anyone did tell you this would you have started in the first place? Building a business is mentally and emotionally draining, but you have to be willing to spend a few years of pure sweat and tears in order to live the rest of your life the way a lot of people can’t.
I know my end goal is going to give me the ultimate freedom, and this is something very important to me; those that know me know how much I love to travel. I want to have the freedom to get up and say “Right, I’m going to work from a beach house in Bali this week”. One of my biggest goals was getting out of the “rat race”. The horrendous 9-5, exchanging my time for money. Thankfully I was able to break free from this race in December 2019- but again there is another story behind that.
Freedom aside though, entrepreneurship is bloody lonely! There will be days where you feel like your whole world is crashing before your eyes. There will be days you lack so much motivation that you just want to curl up in bed and cry. I mean there HAS been days I’ve done just that. People will see you thriving but they won’t see you on the days you are crying and are tempted to throw in the towel.
The one thing I miss from the corporate world is the sense of community.Yes, I have my entrepreneur friends, but 80% of the time you are very much alone, in your thoughts with no one to lean on. This was something that I struggled with for a very long time, but thankfully I have an amazing mentor who helps keep me focused when I’m starting to slip and is also there to encourage me to be the best version of myself. I would recommend everyone to find a mentor that they can confide in throughout this journey. You don’t have to be alone in this.
And when things do start to feel like you’re being suffocated; go back to your why. Take time out to invest in your personal development and read a book. I have a reading list longer than my arm of personal development books, so if anyone wants a recommendation feel free to drop me a message.
There will be days were you will doubt yourself and will ask if you are good enough for your journey. Take a moment to reflect on how far you have already come. You may just surprise yourself. Celebrate those milestones, write down your goals; no matter how small they may be, you will be amazed at how this simple step right here can make a difference.
Become comfortable with being uncomfortable, it’s not going to be an easy journey, but I PROMISE you it will be one worth making.