January of 2018 was the first time I considered becoming an entrepreneur and started taking actions to make that a reality. A year later, it’s January of 2019 and I can officially say I’m an entrepreneur with my own writing business. It hasn’t necessarily been an easy journey to entrepreneurship, but it’s been a very rewarding one. I don’t regret for one moment choosing this path. Along the way, I’ve learned some valuable lessons that have completely changed the way I approach my goals. I’m sharing them here, and hope they help you as much as they’ve helped me.
Mindset is everything. Henry Ford once said, “Whether you think you can or you can’t you’re probably right.” And he’s right. If you think you can’t accomplish something, you won’t put effort or energy into it. You’ll just write it off and tell yourself you made the “reasonable” decision to go for a realistic goal. But the truth is, you let your own fears and doubts get in the way. If you think of your goal, however grand or outlandish, as something possible, you’ll start putting in the work to make it a reality. And eventually, because you’ve put in the work, it will become a reality.
There is no “perfect” moment. It’s easy to want to wait for the opportune moment to learn a new language, start a business, take up a new hobby, etc. But really, there is no perfect moment. If you keep waiting, that moment will never come, because waiting is just a way of procrastinating and protecting yourself from failing. If you really want something, you have to take steps towards your goals today, regardless of any fears or doubts you may have.
Invest time in your goals. It’s also easy to say there’s not enough time in the day to get everything done. But that’s not strictly the truth. I know that if a new book by a favorite author comes out, regardless of what else I have to do, I will make time to read it. By the same token, most people will make time to scroll through social media or watch tv instead of doing something that will help them reach their goals. If you want your life to change, you have to decide what actions will help you reach your goals and invest your time in them.
Break down large goals into smaller, achievable goals. The sheer scope of a big goal can overwhelm you until you feel like giving up from the lack of progress. For sanity’s sake, it’s much better to break down large goals into smaller, attainable ones. Small, consistent actions add up to big successes; they also allow you to see how far you’ve come since starting.
Create the business you appreciate as a customer. What do you value when you shop online or in stores? Quality products? Customer service? Free items and information? A personal touch? Whatever it is, make sure you do that for your business. Chances are, others look for those same things when they shop. If you create a business with your customers in mind, you’ll not only gain the type of reputation you respect in others, but customers who value your business.
Tell others what you are doing. If you want to start your own business, you have to be your own biggest cheerleader. Nobody is going to be aware of what you can offer unless you show them. Share what services or advice you have online in communities relevant to your business. Tell people you meet offline about what your goal is and the actions you are taking to reach it. You never know what connections or ideas other people have that may help you grow your business.
Give yourself permission to make mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes—even professionals. Everyone’s human, after all. Any time you make a mistake, tell yourself, “All right, I’ve made this mistake, what do I need to do to move forward? What have I learned that I can apply to my next project/action?” If you focus less on the failure and more on how to fail forward, you’ll be able to move on with ease. After all, each failure only brings you closer to success.
Look forward, not backward. It’s important to reflect a little on the past so you can learn from it, but ultimately you have to keep your eye on the future you want to build for yourself. If you focus too much on the past, you’ll be trapped in the way of thinking that keeps you in your current situation. Start imagining how it will feel to think and act like a person who has your dream career, lifestyle, relationship, etc. and soon you’ll have new ideas that can make it into a reality.
Keep learning. No matter how much you already know, there’s always more to learn. Change is inevitable. Whether you’re just starting out your career or you’re already an expert, you probably can see new trends and technologies affecting how your job is done. If you want to succeed, you have to be knowledgeable about these changes so you can best help your clients. Watch webinars and YouTube videos. Read articles and books. Visit libraries and attend conferences. You’ll never know how much you don’t know until you learn it.
Author: Rachel Niemczyk
Author Bio: Rachel Niemczyk is the founder of Words with Impact. She works to make a positive difference in communities, one word at a time, by providing writing services to nonprofits and businesses alike. Her Twitter account @WordsImpactLLC offers daily writing tips, resources and inspiration to her followers. For more information on her services, or to read her weekly blog posts, you can go to her website www.wordsimpact.com.
Link to social media or website: https://www.wordsimpact.com