Rapid fire lessons from my first year in business

First year in biz image

So, I’ve been in business for a few years now. But, actually running my business, by myself, full time? I celebrated my first year as a full time #girlboss and solopreneur recently. It’s been a fun, interesting, challenging and amazing year. I have learnt so much and I wanted to share with you a few insights that I feel might be helpful to fellow solopreneurs out there or those looking to leap into their business full time.

So here are a few rapid fire lessons I have learnt along the way:

+ Start before you are ready

During my talks, workshops and when coaching someone I find myself often repeating this one phrase: “Start before you are ready”. Often times we want to wait until the conditions, feeling, timing and everything else is perfect and just right before we get started on something – be it a business, a project, a new venture or whatever it might be. The thing is if we wait for perfection we might never get started.

+ Invest in yourself

Whether that is finding the right coach for you, attending courses or workshops  – invest in yourself, your journey and your education. You are worth investing in.

+ Hire a coach

Finding someone who can support, challenge, guide and hold you to a higher standard is critical. It also helps massively if the person has been were you are and can offer some perspective for you.

+ Be strategic.

Treat it like a business, not a hobby, from the beginning (it will be so much easier). Create and implement a strategic plan to grow and maximise your business efforts. Look at opportunities that you can leverage. Focus on income producing activities from day one.

+ Surround yourself with positive and empowering people who get you and what you do

Find and surround yourself with people who get what you are about and who support the journey that you are on. Finding people who are on the same wave length, who support you unconditionally, who lift you up and are positive with lifts your vibration and makes achieving your goals that much easier.

+ Find what works for you

Test and see what works. If it doesn’t work dont be afraid to shake things up and try something different.

+ Don’t be afraid if you need a bridge job/side gig

There might be a time when things get a little tight and finding a side job / some contract work / a bridge role to keep the money ticking over is a smart move. There is no shame in following your dreams and doing what you have to do to pay the bills.

+ Take time out from social media

In an effort to be connected in this day and age many of us have our smart phone glued to our hand most of the time. It’s created habits were many of us aimlessly check our Facebook every few minutes / hours. Take a breather from social media every now and again. It will give you space to think, grow your business and be creative without the white noise of what everyone got up to on the weekend and its so liberating.

+ Outsource what isn’t your zone of genius

Not a fan of accounting or taxes? Find someone who is. Not the best with Mailchimp, SEO or design work? Find someone who is. Working this way will allow you more time to focus on and do what you are passionate about and what is your zone of genius. Always hire a reputable vendor and someone who has experience with your kind of projects. If you think hiring a professional is expensive wait until you hire an amateur. If you have small odd tasks sites like Fiverr, Odesk and Elance are great and might to help you out.

+ Outline your overall vision for your business

A compelling vision will act like a magnet and draw you towards it. What do you envision for yourself and for your business in the next 1, 2, 5, 10 years?

+ Each area of life is inter connected. If one is going well others tend to be going well too.

I’ve found each of life has a ripple effect on the other.  Sometimes by focusing on something other than my business it has had a profound effect on that area of my life.

+ It’s okay if things change. As you change so will your business and what you offer.

Life is a journey as is business and being a solopreneur. Remaining adaptable and fluid is key.

+ Put yourself out there. Even more than that. Push the boundaries on yor comfort zone.

Put yourself out there just a little bit more than what you think you should.

+ All you need is one insane moment of courage

People think courage is the absence of doubt but its not. Courage = Doubt + Commitment + Action. One insane moment is all you need to get started. If you leap the net will appear.

+ Leverage your time 

Work smarter, not harder. How can you work strategically and leverage your time? This relates to my point above about focusing on your zone of genius which will allow you to leverage your time.

+ There is no such thing as failure, only feedback

When you’re a solopreneur a setback can sometimes hit you right where it hurts and feel almost fatal. It’s your time, your sweat and energy that have gone into making this venture what it is so when something doesn’t quite work out it can sting a little (read a lot). Realising there is no such thing as failure only feedback changes your perspective. You soon look at things that didn’t work out as planned as an opportunity to go back to the drawing board.

+ Comparison is lethal to your creativity

Comparisonistis is a thing. it sucks. Let it go. Keep on doing your thing.

+ Perfectionism is just fear in fancy dress

Perfectionism kills more dreams than anything – because perfectionism won’t even let you start if it isn’t just right. Perfectionism is just fear. Version done is better than version none. Don’t let perfection keep you from getting started.

 

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Are you a solopreneur or girl boss? What have you learnt by being in business? Or are you looking to leap into your business full-time? What do you struggle with? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.

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