And even if we DO unravel, I guarantee there is a maker out there that can gather up that yarn and knit it into a beanie or infinity scarf! Being an entrepreneur isn’t for everyone and many days leave you wondering why you are doing it in the first place...but it seems that once the entrepreneur bug bites, there’s no going back, I think it’s the control freak in our Type A personalities. After featuring many kickass women who decided THEY need to be CEO, whether with a part-time side hustle or a full-time rewarding career, I’ve uncovered some common threads (maker pun intended) and will list them for you now, 8 things that keep entrepreneurs from unravelling:
Let’s admit it, the following phrase we keep seeing on mugs everywhere hits us at our very core... “first I drink the coffee, then I do the things.” Oh and us women in business LOVE to take pictures of our coffee, all the better with a notepad and pen casually/strategically placed within the frame (guilty!) This is the best way to document that we indeed are working on our businesses, even if after that picture we then scrolled through Pinterest for an hour and Googled “geocaching” before REALLY getting down to work.
A planner system
I don’t care if you spackle it in glitter and stickers from Michael’s, but a system to keep you organized and on track is a necessity as an entrepreneur. As long as you use it....and look at it. Actually, it’s probably better to have more like three systems in place, and definitely one that sounds an alarm.
No, your mom doesn’t count. She is going vomit love all over every post you do and is probably handing out your business cards at the mall. You need a “person” who just seems to get you, and who seems to want to shout it from the rooftops! Have you noticed someone always liking or sharing your posts....THIS is the person you want to connect with on those days you want to bang your head against the wall thinking maybe someone will notice THAT.
You need to find a place where you can connect with other entrepreneurs, feel validated, get ideas, take a break and laugh. I’m pretty sure the cheerleader referred to above would boast “you don’t need to compete to feel complete!” There is so much love to go around, and each business will have a unique style to reflect the personality of the rockstar behind the business name. We can support each other through this crazy journey! Have a cupcake business and you need some killer pictures for your portfolio? If you are part of a community of other like-minded entrepreneurs I bet you can link up with an amazing photographer in minutes! Doesn’t this all sound lovely? #arrowitforward
A list of achievements
Don’t freak out, I don’t mean amazing accolades and honourable awards (unless you have those....so um....how did you get those?) What I’m talking about here are what is often called a small-scale victory. Did you sell your first item to someone who isn’t a friend or family member? Great, put it on the list. Did someone you admire (or totally stalk on social media) like a post of yours on Instagram? Awesome, write it down. Did you finally figure out how to reposition a menu on your website? Cool, tack it on. Sometimes we need reminders that being an entrepreneur is a journey, with many ups and downs along the way, but always with things to be proud of! On the other hand, if this idea is already making you feel that it’s one more thing to do (ugh...doing stuff), then try this: write “I TOOK INITIATIVE” on a big post-it note to see every morning. You COULD be watching reruns of Grey’s Anatomy every night, but instead you are writing blogs, networking, editing pictures, making soap, carving wood, packing your car for a vendor show, etc. Get it? Got it? GOOD.
A suit of armour
People are assholes. There’s no getting around that. Some will disguise their jealousy as simple lack of interest. Others can even be downright mean and take time out of their day to post a negative comment. It’s so important to our dear little hearts to remember that not everyone will like everything we make, write, or create. This actually may be the hardest thing about being an entrepreneur, at least initially, before you’ve produced enough sweat and tears to turn a bit of profit and purchase that shiny suit of armour. Also, TRY to keep in mind that while YOU are obsessing over your venture constantly...that doesn’t mean that all of your friends are! Remember having your first kid and your friends with no kids never asked about your kid and you were all like “ask me about my damn kid you evil demon with no soul!!?” Well a non-entrepreneur may just not think of asking you how things are going with your business, it’s just not their world, it’s as simple as that (or at least that’s what I tell myself to protect said dear little heart).
Most entrepreneurs have the fortunate/unfortunate reality of having a brain that WILL. NOT. STOP. (brainstorm?) I know for me, a glass of wine (no I’m not talking about a bottle....although sometimes a bottle WILL FIT into one gigantic guilt-free-because-it’s-just-one-glass goblet) triggers the TINY part in my brain that shouts, using a megaphone in the hopes that the desperation will be heard, “shut the &@%# up and zone out for a bit will ya!”
All the feelsAnd finally, ask yourself WHY are you an entrepreneur. This is different for everyone. It could be that you love connecting with others, putting yourself out there in the world, and being an entrepreneur gives this to you. It could be reaching monetary goals that you never thought possible. It could be the validation you get from your peers, people liking what you created with your heart and your hands. Whatever it is, make sure that you are getting what you are seeking from this rollercoaster journey we call entrepreneurship....make sure it keeps giving you all the feels.