10 things that I wish I had known before starting a business

Are you caught in start up hell?  Or some sort of small business purgatory?

Do you even remember why you thought that going into business for yourself was a good idea?

Perhaps you thought that business was going to give you freedom?  And, a lifestyle that dreams are made of?

Here is a list of the ten (10) things that I wish that I had known before starting my real estate business five years ago.  I am sure that you may have some others to add to the list; but I hope that it gives you some comfort that you are not alone.

1. You will need to be resourceful

The skills that supported me during the startup phase, proved to be useless in the next phase.  My ‘excellent’ technical skills became redundant once staff and customers arrived.

You will need to find a better way.  A better option.  A better answer.

2.  You will need to be abundant

Being in start up phase was terrifying for me.  I knew what needed to be done, but my ‘to do’ list didn’t match my bank balance.

It is in these moments, when money is tight, and it will be, that you need to keep your eye on the big prize and have faith in what is coming.  Hard work and an abundant mindset will fix most things.  Better days are coming.  I promise.

3.  You will need to be mindful

Start up is, and was, lonely.  In this phase, I found myself catastrophizing the worst of the worst.

Practice mindfulness and deep breathing.  Otherwise your monkey mind will chatter to you about all of the problems.  Tell it to be quiet and keep focused on the big picture.

4.  You will need to be creative

I let my creativity run screaming out of the building at times.  Usually when the bank was demanding something from me.

But, simply, the same thinking that got you into the mess, will not get you out of it.

5.  You will need courage

Over and over again.  I found that starting the business was the easy bit.

That rush of blood to the head and excitement during start up won’t last long.  Keeping going will be the tough bit and when you need your courage the most.

6.  You will need to be tough

Some how, in the early days, I didn’t understand that the ultimate responsibility stopped with me.

No need to be an arse about it, but no-one else is going to make the hard decisions that will need to be made.

7.  You will need self belief

Starting out, I made use of the social media arena to get our message out.  Guess what?  It wasn’t, and isn’t, always kind.

Leave the critics to their job and get on with yours.

Truly, there are enough people ‘out there’ that will find fault with your work; back yourself in with an unwavering self belief.

8. You need a North Star

During my darkest moments, and on the days that I want to quit, I will bring myself back to my ‘North Star’ or ‘why’ I started this journey in the first place.

Getting clear about your big arsed ‘why’ will help you.  Especially on the hard days.

9.  It’s actually nothing to do with ‘them’

When times were tough, I found it really easy to fall into the blame trap and find fault with ‘them’.

Really, it comes down to you.  Each and every time.  What are you going to do about it?  How are you going to fix it, influence it, change it.

10.  And, it is the singular best personal development journey

I love learning.  Full stop.

But nothing prepared me for just how much learning there is small business.

And, I am not talking about technical stuff, but all the big stuff.  Stuff about you.  Stuff about humans.  Stuff about growth, decision making and leadership.

Truly business is the singular best personal development journey of a lifetime.

Nothing can ever beat what I learnt about myself, other humans and business in the five years since launch.

Want to chat about business, life and leadership.  No pressure. Just a life health check?

Flick me a line and let’s compare stories and see what we learn.

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