If you’re reading this, you’ve had the moment. You remember. That instant when you suddenly knew beyond any doubt that you would not be tied down to a desk, would not commute to the same building everyday and be stuck there on someone else’s schedule, attending endless time-wasting meetings and expending your precious creative energy navigating office politics.
After that moment, your focus turned toward gaining your independence, no matter what it would take. So you figured out how to make it happen, and you did it.
Buh-bye expense report deadlines and regimented schedules. Hello self-defined days of working your own way, in your pajamas if you feel like it, maybe even throwing in a load of laundry between emails.
Well done! You created a lifestyle worth celebrating every single morning.
And if you’re like me, you also created some new challenges you never knew you’d have to face.
Like those nasty fears about the future. Overmixing your business and personal lives. Forgetting when to put work away for the day and start enjoying the freedom you’ve intentionally built into your daily life. And finding inspiration and support from other people like yourself.
So how do you keep the entrepreneurial party going when the going gets tough? I’ve developed four tools that get me through, and I’m happy to share them.
- Have faith.
When the security of a steady paycheck, benefits and paid vacation time vanish, keep fear at bay by cultivating a strong belief in yourself. It will help you stay positive and trust that your business will thrive and prosper.
- Create space.
It’s hard to make greatness happen on a coffee-ringed corner of the dining room table. Find a proper space for yourself and make it beautiful. Feeling visually stimulated fuels your creativity and productivity. Having your own inspiring space also helps you value your work and your time when others ask you for favors.
- Find balance.
Office schedules, annoying as they may be, do have breaks built into them that help you create balance. Conversations at the coffee machine and lunches with colleagues feed your creativity and refuel your energy. Now that you’re working solo, it’s important to take time away from your desk. Getting out for a walk, meeting people for lunches and keeping in touch with what’s happening in the rest of the world are investments of time that pay off by making your work better.
- Find community.
No one ever really does anything all alone. Surrounding yourself with good people who understand what you’re doing and want to help you succeed can get you farther than an angel investor ever would. Create a robust community of other make-it-happen women. Brainstorm together. Support each other’s projects. There’s nothing more powerful for growing your business, and, bonus—it’s fun.
What challenges do you find yourself facing in on your own? You’re not alone. Let’s talk about them together and share solutions.