We have been through some business “woes” lately and we know that what we have been facing is what a lot of entrepreneurs deal with. We want to expose the common battles that face us entrepreneurs and some truths to try and remember when those feelings start creeping in.
1. They didn’t like me.
Whether it is trolls on the internet, someone local bashing your work or business, or a client who didn’t choose you.. Feeling less than is a common feeling in entrepreneurship. This is one of those feelings that is inevitable. It is going to happen. It is impossible to please everyone! The quote “The larger the empire, the more enemies made” is so true but what you don’t know on the other side of that is the supporters and those who love and care for you. As you grow and your business grows so does your supporters. Focus on them. Focus on those that you made a difference in and the ones you still have the opportunity to serve.
2. Why are we so BUSY? I need a break! THEN— Where is all of our business? What are we going to do now?
Seasons. Seasons are good but that doesn’t mean that some are not hard. A lot of entrepreneurs have to learn to change with their business. What worked last month may not work this month. We crack up that we are chasing our high tail in the summer and then in the winter we are begging for something to do. Though we hope for a day where the business doesn’t have as big of a break between on and off season we also know that each season is there to teach us something. The season we are in now, Andrew and I could complain and say we don’t like it but the truth is that it wont get us anywhere. There are things we have to rethink, challenge our vision, creativity and more. In seasons of the unknown and seasons of BUSY we have learned so much. When your business goes through its motions I ask you not to complain and get mad but rather look at it and see what you need to learn in this time. Maybe balance is something you need to learn more of and the busy of life has taught you what you KNOW you need to take the time for. Maybe you always thought business was going to come and when it stopped you were shocked. Maybe you can learn something there too. Or maybe its a season you need that you didn’t know you needed. The truth is every entrepreneur has highs and lows. How they respond to them is what makes them or breaks them.
3. I am alone.
Entrepreneurship can be lonely. Not everyone in your life totally understands the way your mind thinks. Your go get em attitude and your ability to work work work. Whether you sit behind a desk all day or have to manage a handful of employees and have social interaction…you feel alone. Who understands what you are battling? If there is anything we have learned is that being an entrepreneur itself will not automatically surround you with like minded people. You have to take the time to get out and connect and I don’t mean in Facebook groups. The most beneficial relationships for us to know we are not alone in our “woes” have been from attending conferences, workshops, and networking meetings. Don’t let the feelings of isolation keep you from going. You are not alone and there is someone else out there that needs you just as much as you need them.
4. Will I ever MAKE it?
Everyones definition of success has to be defined for themselves. The truth is though that many of us have false expectations for us and our business. Being “famous”, well known, or making a certain amount, or booking a certain amount of clients does not necessarily mean success. For us we don’t want to necessarily set a place that we say “I have reached it!” because then that would mean there was an end in sight. Our heart is we should humble ourself in every season and know that there is ALWAYS more to learn, something that needs changed, and even failures we have to learn from. To me I believe success should be defined by what you overcome and not just what you reach. I also believe success should be based off whether you have lived out your vision in your business for that year or not. Remembering at the core what your WHY in your business is. It is easy to lose sight of why you do this and start looking at numbers. At the end of the day the core of your business being healthy, steered around your vision and living out its purpose is most important. In that, a healthy foundation, the success we all try to chase finds you.
Well I got all my work done but I haven’t showered, cooked dinner in a week, and my kids have been staring at the tv for days. Sound familiar? Oh, thats just me? HAHA! When being an entrepreneur and a business having its waves, it can be so hard to find balance. And as soon as you do find balance everything changes. We look at the big picture and get overwhelmed and our go get em mentality creeps in. We work our bones off and sacrifice whatever we have to along the way. One thing I have learned is small steps make a big difference. I know not all of you work from home and may work in your office but for us working at home provides us small opportunities. We can take breaks as a family. I can set aside 15 minutes of intentional time with my daughter. Instead of being overwhelmed and looking at the day or week, looking at my hours and minutes helps me feel less overwhelmed. Stopping also helps. Going for a walk, clearing your mind. Andrew just spoke at our church last Sunday about urgent over important. In our culture we make things very urgent and sometimes lose what is important because of it. For example being sick and going to the doctor is urgent but taking care of your health so you don’t get sick is important. In this case when your busy is psycho it can be URGENT to take care of it. But what is really important is finding a way to prevent the psycho from happening and putting things in place to better handle the waves. When you constantly focus on maintaining your business you can sometimes forget that there are things you can do to not just survive but CHANGE to provide an easier way and better balance in the future. Changing to a studio system was just one way we have calmed the pyscho in the past and created more time for us to focus on what is important and not feel so rushes.
Sharing, serving and celebrating,
Andrew + Chrissy