6 Pro Tips for Becoming Your Own Boss (Yes Even Now)
We're halfway through Brit + Co's Selfmade business course and our coaches are killing it! We were so inspired by their motivating/genius/fear-crushing advice that we had to share a few gems with y'all!
Ever dream of starting your own business? Imagine waking up every morning EXCITED to go to work. We all have an idea tucked inside, that career sliding door that makes us wonder "what if"? But the same excuses creep up and keep us from taking the leap (and granted, legit ones like paying bills).
Selfmade is a 10-week interactive virtual course, led by Brit + Co co-founders Brit Morin and Anjelika Temple, that helps you figure out how to make your dream actually possible. Here are some ways the amazing female founders behind Selfmade turned a passion into a purpose.
Ignore the naysayers (and your inner critic). That one naysayer or negative voice in your head can crush your dreams in an instant with a flippant comment or thought. Don't let it happen. Why? Because every new entrepreneur meets someone who doesn't get their fresh idea. Even Google had VCs who said no. Instead, find the people who lift you up and remind yourself why you should do this. "Don't second-guess yourself or your qualifications," adds Lauren Maillian CEO of DIgital Undivided.
If you have an idea that you *think* will work or that you feel passionate about, just go for it. Remind yourself of all the successes you've had so far in your career - if you can succeed for someone else, you can succeed for yourself. "Stop catastrophizing, start where you are. What is stopping you from taking that next step?" adds Naomi Powell, founder of @thelifestyleedit.
Don't just think about your idea, engage with it. Having the idea is the first step, and sometimes the hardest, in a world with already a million ideas in the works. Be the one who actually does something about it. "That spark, you know this little flicker, and what happens when we engage with our ideas, that's when they start to take shape," says Jess Ekstrom, founder of @headbandsofhope. "So we can think about our ideas all day long, but it's when we actually engage with them that we're like, maybe it's going to turn into something else." That can mean reaching out to others in the industry for information, finding resources like books and podcasts that you need to get started, or hatching a business plan. This doesn't need to happen all at once but start somewhere to turn that spark into a flame.
Practice confidence. "Confidence is something you have to practice. It's not something we're born with," says Jungalow founder Justina Blakeney. So how do you actually practice confidence? First, says business coach Maxie McCoy, break out of your comfort zone. "Challenge yourself to try something new and squash any fear of failure. Go into it saying, 'I don't know how this is going to go but I am going to learn from it and maybe I'll be good at it, and maybe I won't and I'll try something else.'" Adds Anjelika: "When you're tackling something that you're not feeling particularly confident about, how can you channel that person that's confident about other things, how would your most confident selves handle whatever comes your way?"
Create a vision people want to buy into. A fun and creative way to start your vision is to create a vision board for your business: what does your brand look like, what do you need to get there, who do you need to get there? "If you want to build your dream you need to make sure: 1. you're able to execute the vision. 2. You surround yourself with people in a position to stretch and grow. 3. And that you find people that are so great you risk they outgrow you," says Justina. Taking the time to think about the big picture and then break that picture into smaller tasks can make getting started seem less daunting and give you a solid foundation. (Of course you can make tweaks as you grow and learn - it's not a linear path!).
Know your worth. If you have a creative talent that people love, charge for it! Creative business coach Ivirlei Brookes says, "It wasn't even something I was taking seriously so I started charging for it. And believe it or not, then I started actually having real clients. I signed on my first big client who's a corporate person. I'm like, oh my god this is real. I made a real business out of it." If someone finds value out of what you can offer, you should too.
Think big. "It doesn't have to be something that's like Tesla," says Brit. "That said, it doesn't mean it can't become a big business, either. In Selfmade, we're not trying to teach you to think small, we're trying to teach you how to think about the problem you want to solve with the passion that you have to solve it." Set an intention and know that if you keep taking the steps to get to your end goal you'll get there, and what might surprise you, is that you'll get there and beyond. "Never allow anyone to tell you you're dreaming too big," adds Justina.
Get more inspiration and practical tips for creating a profitable business. Selfmade fall session kicks off Sept. 28th. Sign up now!
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Theresa Gonzalez is a content creator based in San Francisco and the author of Sunday Sews. She's a lover of all things design and spends most of her days momming her little one Matilda.