I am a new business owner. I say this because I completely re-branded by business, I even changed the name. So I’m technically starting from over, and that got me thinking about where all businesses start.
That’s right each and every person who has ever started a new business has started at zero. Zero clients. Zero sales. Zero social media followers. Zero blog posts.
I could easily feel bad about all those zeros but I don’t. If anything, I look at my zeros as possibilities. My zeros represent areas I can grow in my business. My zeros are my motivators and I am proud of them. I am proud because they represent the fact that I started.
So how do you not fall into the trap of feeling like a zero when your business is full of zeros?
This is probably the hardest thing in the world for any business owner to do, but it’s probably the most important thing you can do to grow your business.
Comparison, if done wrong, can lead to a serious loss of motivation. And let’s face it most business owners compare themselves to other, more successful, businesses in the wrong way. Comparing your startup to a business that has been around for a decade doesn’t do your business justice. It completely overlooks the accomplishments you have made and only focuses on the accomplishments you haven’t reached yet.
Why would you want to put yourself in a position to feel bad about your business when you have already done more than a lot of others out there? You did take a leap of faith and actually started a business and most people out there only dream about actually doing it. You did it! Be proud!
Instead of comparing yourself to someone else and their business try reaching out. Learn from their success. Ask them what it was like for them when they first started out. You might be surprised to learn that they were in a very similar situation that you find yourself in now.
Starting a business is scary stuff. It’s easy to let your fear of failure hold you back from achieving your goals. It creeps in when you least expect it to and it can sabotage you and your business.
I have plenty of fears surrounding starting a business. What if I fail? What if no one ever reads this blog post? What if I never get new clients? The list of things I fear is long but I push my fears aside because I know if I let those fears run the show those fears will come true. I have to believe that I have enough drive and talent to make this small business into what I dream it will be in 10 years.
Have you ever felt like a fraud? I have, and I’m not afraid to admit it.
Writing my very first blog post I struggled with this feeling. What if everyone read that post and knew I had no idea what I was doing? Ugh, the struggle was real. But I pushed through those feelings because while I may not have known everything when I first started the post, and I still don’t, I learned a great deal of new information and put it to use.
I will be the first to admit that when it comes to running a business I don’t know a whole heck of a lot. But the more I learn the more empowered I feel. The more empowered I feel the less those zeros bother me. They no longer look like things I can’t do but things I haven’t learned how to do yet.
If you spend any amount of time with me in person or on my blog you will see that I am a big believer in the power of setting goals. Goals have a purely magical ability to turn something that seems insurmountable into something you can and will accomplish.
All those zeros you see are goals waiting to be set. There is nothing in your business that you cannot accomplish if you choose to accomplish it. So challenge yourself to turn one zero into a number any other number you choose. Make it a goal and don’t stop until you get where you want to be.
Who doesn’t like a good celebration? (hand raised from my side of the screen).
We celebrate a lot of milestones in our lives. Birthdays, graduation, weddings. But who said celebrations are only for the big events? Believe it or not no one said celebrations are only for major life events. I mean it. It’s there’s no rule against celebrating the small things.
Want to know what I did when I launched my website? Champaign and cake. Why? Because for me that was worth celebrating. For some people that may seem like just a part of doing business and not really a big deal. But for me, it was a huge step in the right direction and I partied like it was 1999.
Now I may not have cake and champaign every time I accomplish something in my business but I do celebrate my success. I encourage you to do the same. Pat yourself on the back every once in a while or better yet have someone else pat you on the back. Don’t be afraid to brag a little from time to time. You’ve definitely earned the right to be proud.
Starting a business from scratch is no easy feat. It’s long hours and lots of hard work. But if you only pay attention to the zeros you’ll never see all the millions of things you’re doing right. Don’t let the zeros be your downfall. Let them be your motivation.
I hope if any of you have been feeling down on yourselves that this post has helped you see that you’re amazing. You have already accomplished so much more than most people ever will and that in itself is worth celebrating.