Reclaim your independence through entrepreneurship
July 2, 2019 | Uncategorized
For most entrepreneurs, the aim of the game is financial, intellectual, and emotional independence. Being able to control your brand and when and how you make time for work means you can create a life lived on your terms.
But that assumes things are going just how you planned. You might be a necessity entrepreneur who works freelance because you can’t find a suitable job in your area and are struggling to pay the bills. You might be a first-year bootstrapper who always feels at the behest of a difficult client you can’t afford to lose. If so, it could feel like the life you wanted to build is a little too far away.
Try these six ways to take back control.
Take back your financial independence
Pay yourself first
Maybe you’ve been putting all of your money back into your business because you’ve worked so hard to build it and think your returns will be higher. It’s time to pay yourself first. Committing to your personal wealth shows investors you’re serious about your business as a viable, long-term way of making money, rewards you for the time you put in, and allows you to invest and diversify your income.
Protect your personal credit
Maybe, like many female entrepreneurs, you’ve had to rely on personal loans to finance your business. If you’re worried about the impact your business could have on your personal financial standing, try some techniques for building your business credit score so that you can conduct your business separately.
Take back your intellectual independence
Make the time
Maybe you want to make plans but find yourself doing administrative work and and answering emails all day, every day. Kerry Preston from Growtality told attendees of our March event to look back at your calendar and think about where you spent your time in the past five days. Was it doing busywork, checking a to-do list, or something that will help you reach your goals? Know what your biggest derailer is. If you don’t know what dragged you down last week, you’re doomed to repeat it this week.
Then, take at least one hour a day to work towards the things you can’t delegate, that can move you forward and produce a significant result: inspiration, research, making plans, and mapping goals.
Imitation does not flatter your brand
Maybe you want to create something unique, but look at the brands around you and think you can’t compete with their big budgets and agency teams. Brand strategist, Jasmine Bina, says, “Don’t play in someone else’s backyard.” Your competitors might have smart ideas and big budgets, but trying to replicate them doesn’t allow you to get in front of them or say anything unique. Bina goes on, “Box’s brand is a better version of DropBox, but that does nothing to differentiate them. Better is actually worse. Different is what matters.”
Take back your emotional independence
Slay the dragon
Maybe you’ve been putting off a difficult conversation for a while, and it’s taking a toll on your outlook and the faith you have in yourself to manage a tricky situation. Forbes suggests tackling the conversation head on and:
- be direct, get to the point quickly and forget about compliment sandwiches.
- be specific, offer concrete examples about why things have got to this point.
- plan out the conversation, think of questions the person may ask and have answers prepared.
- offer a solution, if you’re breaking up with a bad consultant or letting your first employee go, still come prepared to offer suggestions that could help them in the future.
Chunk your problems
Maybe you feel so overwhelmed by having all bucks stop with you, that you haven’t been able to feel in control of your work life. Chunking is the process of taking those big, overwhelming problems and projects and breaking them down into batches of small, manageable tasks. Not only does this help to make the smaller portions feel easier to tackle and give us some optimism about our ability to get things done, but it’s also helpful for our memory.
We hope you get some time this holiday to take stock of how far you’ve come and make a toast to the future you.
Kerry Preston continued:
“When you consider your obstacles–depletion, tiredness, lack of credibility or funds–go home and make a list of everything you’re doing that’s sabotaging you. Then do the opposite. That’s your action plan.”