THREE YEARS AGO, I TOOK THE PLUNGE! I QUIT MY FULL TIME, CORPORATE, CUSHY JOB AND JUMPED IN HEADFIRST AS A FREELANCER AND A BUSINESS OWNER. I CAN’T BELIEVE HOW MUCH TIME HAS GONE BY ALREADY, AND HOW FAR I HAVE COME. I HAVE LEARNED SO MUCH, GROWN A LOT AND REALLY TOOK A RISK TO FOLLOW A DREAM AND LISTEN TO MY GUT, MY HEART AND JUMP INTO SOMETHING THAT HAD COMPLETELY CHANGED MY OUTLOOK AND GIVEN ME A CONFIDENCE I NEVER THOUGHT I HAD.
They say the first year in business is the hardest. It was. I won’t lie and say it was all champagne popping, ‘making it rain’ and having to turn away all the clients who were rushing to work with me. The first year was filled with me building the confidence to talk about my business to the world. Establishing my brand, getting clients to trust in my knowledge and expertise, and HUSTLIN’.
SOME WORDS OF WISDOM IF YOU ARE THINKING OF LAUNCHING YOUR OWN BUSINESS:
Talk About It I was embarrassed and self-conscious to talk about my company when I first started it. I felt like I was an imposter and that people would see me as an amateur, not qualified enough to have my own company. Once I started talking about it, I was pleasantly surprised by my peers and loved-one’s reactions. I knew it was the right path for me.
Hang in There There will be many dark days, doubts and setbacks. KEEP AT IT! The good, sparkly, and happiest days have outweighed the bad. The flexibility I’ve had to create my own schedule, take vacations, visit my family, spend time with my spouse and take on hobbies that I only dreamed of was the exact reason I chose to be my own boss.
Network & Collaborate Vancouver has by far been the most influential and inspiring community I have ever been a part of. The amount of incredibly talented, creative and risk-taking individuals I have met in the past few years has provided me with so much wisdom, confidence and ideas. If you take ANYTHING away from this post – PLEASE listen when I say NETWORKING & COLLABORATING is by far the BEST way to grow, market and sell your business!
Get Out of Your Comfort Zone Two years ago, I was asked to be a speaker at my first conference in Calgary on marketing and social media. I was EXTREMELY humbled that I was asked to speak, but then was EXTREMELY terrified at the same time. In the past few years, it has been my goal to find more speaking opportunities for myself and my business, and without even telling anyone about it, I wrote it out on a list of “WANTS” and then it happened. My promise to myself and my business is to ALWAYS take the opportunity to be absolutely scared to death. I never want to feel so comfortable that I am bored, not challenged and no longer growing. That is why I have left every single job I have ever had. Now I pull the reigns and I want to ensure I am always growing and always putting myself out there.
Never Forget Who Has Been There Since Day One I had a call with a client the other day and what she said really stuck with me. She said, “I am only just beginning. Whoever is willing to work with me now will be the first people I think of once I break that barrier and get to the top”. This really stuck with me because I truly believe the same thing in my business. Those who have supported, promoted and cheered me on since the beginning, are the people I want to take to the top with me as well. I will never forget them.
Surround Yourself with Like Minded Individuals I have decluttered a lot of “excess baggage” in my life in the past few years, and it has only made me a more positive, selfless and confident person. Rid yourself of all the negativity in your life that is holding you back. You will feel so free, and you make room for all of the amazing things that you can fill your life with instead.
Always Remember Where You Came From My goal is to always stay humble and stay true to my beliefs, values and goals. I never want to forget the reasons I chose this path. This year, I took on a mentor and it was an incredibly fulfilling experience. I always want to be someone who gives their time, energy and knowledge to those who are just starting out or who needs support and encouragement.
I am so excited and ready to take on the challenges, goals and work of my third year in business. I think this next year will be a really defining year for me and I can’t wait to see what I take on next.
I wish every entrepreneur/futurepreneur the strength, confidence, wisdom to follow their dreams and take risks in building a life they no longer want to run away from.
Creativity & Love, Lindsay