Starting your own business can be challenging, but it can also be one of the best things you do! In this podcast (episode #230) and blog, I speak with certified life and business coach, bestselling author and podcast host Christy Wright about tips to overcome your fear and put yourself out there, how to manage your mental health and stress when starting or running your own business, how to overcome parent guilt, how to deal with sexism in the workplace and become your own advocate, the best ways for dealing with failures in business, and more!
As Christy notes, the barrier for entry into the marketplace is lower than ever before. These days, you can start a home-based business or side business as early as tomorrow. It is very accessible—you can learn to make your schedule work for you and do what you love!
However, many people disqualify themselves from starting their own business or pursuing their passions because they think that they are not business-minded or don’t have the necessary knowledge or skills to do what they want to do. But this doesn’t have to be you! Christy has made it her life work to show people how simple starting their own business is by giving them practical steps to pursue their dreams through her Business Boutique Academy.
As Christy discusses in her bestselling book, Business Boutique: A Woman's Guide for Making Money Doing What She Loves, the three most important steps someone needs to take to start their own business are:
- Start with what you have: your skills (your education & experience), your strengths (your natural talents) and your stuff (what you already own). This will give you confidence and momentum to keep on keeping on!
- Choose an idea and run with it. This is not set in stone—you can change your mind if it doesn’t work out. Just choose the easiest idea to make money and start there.
- Put yourself out there. Don’t wait till you are not afraid to do what you want to do. Take the risk, be courageous and put yourself out there. Do it, despite the fear!
Yes, this can be scary, but fear or anxiety is not necessarily a bad sign when starting your own business or pursuing something new. Don’t think that if you are supposed to do something, you won’t be fearful or anxious. Fear is a sign that you are doing something bold, not something bad. Normalize this fear—see it as a sign that you are doing something new. And, over time, your fear will lessen! It will get easier and easier as you move forward. The antidote to fear is action, which will not only decrease your anxiety, but also boost your self-confidence!
This also means accepting that failure is a part of any business, just as it is a part of life. Yes, when it comes to business, you want to be wise. Start small, go slow and put good business practices in place. But, more importantly, know that you will fail occasionally. Don’t be afraid of failure! If you start something new, you are bound to make mistakes and fail at times—this is normal.
Don’t see failure as a sign that you are not worthy or good enough, which often happens with women in business, since we are often taught from youth to internalize our failures and be more risk-averse. Remember that failure is a stepping stone to success. Even really successful people fail!
At the end of the day, we all need to be willing to suck. We need to be humble enough to be a beginner, because this is where everyone starts! Don’t just cross your fingers and expect overnight success. Indeed, if you learn how to be faithful in the small things when you start a business, you build the foundation for big success. It shapes your character, talent and skill set.
There are always challenges associated with starting your own business, and if you are aware of this, then you won’t be blindsided when you are faced with failure, setbacks, or issues like parent guilt! This kind of guilt often comes from focusing on where you are not or what you are not doing. But you can’t live your whole life looking in the rearview mirror—you will miss out on the moment you are in and lose sight of where you want to go. Shift your focus to where you are and choose to be present in the moment—this will help you deal with guilt as a working parent. Yes, there will be moments where you will miss things and feel guilty, but day-to-day you will be able to embrace where you are!
Another challenge many women deal with in the marketplace is sexism. When you face sexism at work, one of the wisest things you can do is be strategic as to how you present your case. Fight for yourself, but fight well, so that they cannot ignore you. Speak up in a way that will lead to the results that you want. Be confident in yourself and your content, and work on strengthening your sense of your own worth, which will make you feel powerful and give you the courage to speak up.
It is also important to always be aware of the language you use when describing yourself or your business. Try to avoid small words like “little”, “just” or “sorry”. When you use insecure language to describe what you are doing, you not only change how people see you, but you also change how you see you!
For more on starting your own business, dealing with parent guilt and protecting your mental health in the workplace, listen to my podcast (episode #230) with Christy, and check out her website and podcast. If you enjoy listening to my podcast, please consider leaving a 5-star review and subscribing! And keep sharing episodes with friends and family and on social media. (Don’t forget to tag me so I can see your posts!)
For more self-care tips to improve your mental health, pre-order my new book 101 Ways to be Less Stressed, which is now on sale at 20% off!
You can also check out my app SWITCH, which is a great tool for helping you learn how to manage your mind and go beyond mindfulness by dealing with the roots of your choices and overcoming thought patterns and behaviors that are affecting your health through the mental process of reconceptualization.
To learn more about dealing with mental health issues in the workplace, register for my Virtual Mental Health Summit this December 3-6! For more see drleafconference.com. CME and CEU credits are available for PAs, NPs, RNs, MDs, DOs, and other medical professionals, and certificates of attendance will be given for physical therapists, occupational therapists and social workers!
2:20 What is the Business Boutique Academy?
4:43 Tips to start your own business
7:49 How women can reduce their anxiety and fear in the workplace
15:33 How to deal with the fear of failure
24:00 How to deal with guilt as a working mom
27:23 Dealing with sexism in the workplace
32:50 How to be more confident in business
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