Eight months ago I left a secure job as a manager for a small boutique spa to venture on my own. To say the least, I wasn’t really prepared for it, but I went ahead and still did it. I took a leap of faith and hoped things will work out. Now, 8 months later, I find myself looking back and thinking “what the heck?!”
You may ask me why I am responding in this way and the simple answer is – I don’t really know how I have done it so far! My business life has been one big, massively, majorly disorganised mess. And with that mess I mean that there was no structure, I was disorganised and overwhelmed with many different projects. Along with this came stress and anxiety. Yet somehow I got through it and thankfully I am still holding my stature. I have to.
When I went self employed, one thing that kept me going was my stubbornness to fail. In fact, this is still the case. Believe me, throwing in the towel and sitting in my little corner feeling sorry for myself crossed my mind more than once. Feeling overwhelmed and impatient with the slow progress of my business also didn’t help – we all want things to move fast in our business, but those high expectations are unrealistic and not sustainable for long term success. So yet again I had to remind myself today to breathe in deep and look at how I can stay consistent without losing my drive to grow a sustainable business.
So, here’s the deal. If you are thinking of starting your own business, you need to prepare for it, you must do your due diligence and understand your goals. Starting off in a slap dash manner like I did does not cut it, believe me, after only 3 months in I was ready to give it all up and just go back to managing someone else’s business and massaging peoples backs to relieve their tension whilst adding to mine. But deep down I knew that to work for someone is not what I want in the long term. In fact, I have always disliked working for other people.
HOW HAVING MY OWN BUSINESS SAVED MY LIFE
Besides wanting to go stirr crazy at times and feeling that I couldn’t really give a damn anymore, a few valuable things took rise when it came to my personal development. If you have read some of my older posts, you would have seen that just a year ago I suffered from depression. I was ready to give up on life, I took no interest in anything, not even a simple house chore. My marriage was suffering, my friendships were feeling it and I didn’t care if I was alive or dead, I was just there.
The depression all started around mid 2015 – mostly down to my job. Long story short, I became emotionally attached to the job and it wasn’t a healthy situation. One would think that when you are in this situation that you would understand where it came from, but I didn’t see it until I was in too deep. My attachment to this job in particular was down to my need to have control over a business of my own. That desire to build something from the bottom up and make it successful. I did pretty well. It was only 8 months old when I joined the company. Maaaan I was chuffed to bits working there. I was left to make my mark and pretty much call the shots, be the boss and directing the business into a now popular company. I had fun. But I also became obsessed with it, like it was my own. And when the time came that my employer came back in to regain control over a business that was left in my hands, I was angry, resentful and felt forced to sit back quietly in my corner and wait until I have permission to speak. I didn’t cope well with it and I started sinking into depression.
Anyway, that is beside what I want to talk about today…
In the past 8 months something phenomenal started happening. I learned to be strong. People who know me would say “but Elize you have always been strong” Not like this. My inner strength is a different kind of strength. The strength that I have now is that of a person that won’t let anyone stand in the way of her dreams, who have been fighting months of rejection “no”, “I am not interested”, “not right now” or “I decided to join someone else’s company”. The reality is that even though these rejections were hard (and they are still hard some days) I am able to deal with it much easier now and move on quicker from it. I am also a whole lot firmer with people that otherwise waste my time or drain my energy. These things are big for me because I am becoming much less of a people’s pleaser and more focused on achieving my goals.
My business journey is only beginning, but I am doing well. Is it easy to have your own business? No. Are you successful from day one? Hell no. The reality is that any business takes time to grow! And it takes effort, consistency and dedication.
What is your business story?