Scared of Entrepreneurship? 6 Ways to Fight Your Fears
Our age is the age of the entrepreneur. Do you want in too? Taking a leap of faith and becoming a full-time, successful entrepreneur can seem like a daunting prospect, but there are many smart ways to control your fears. Whether you are afraid of failure, or just aren’t sure where to start, get some fresh perspective on a potentially challenging situation. Here are six proven ways to start your entrepreneur journey full of enthusiasm and hope, not apprehension!
Visualize your success — starting now
Positive visualization is a strategy that a lot of top entrepreneurs swear by. The idea is that if you concentrate and visualize your success, then you will start to stand taller, breathe freer, and believe in your own ideas more.
- Start small. Try some easy visualization sequences to get your started — it might make you feel slightly awkward at first, but it’s a proven way to invite confidence and success into your life. You can also use visual cues like mood boards to help you ‘see’ success.
- Having a negative mindset will be a huge drain on your energy and motivation levels, so try to find exercises, affirmations, and methods that work for you. Not everyone needs to create a dream roadmap, but a little positive imagination can make all the difference.
Test the waters with your customer base
Jump before you are 100% ready to — you might find that you’ll fly!
Go out there and test your ideas and brand using surveys and questionnaires, and you will quickly start to pick up positive energy from all the feedback. Especially in today’s social media age, there is NO EXCUSE for not testing out your ideas. Create a Facebook page or Twitter poll in minutes, and then outreach it to all your contacts.
Based on initial feedback, you may need to tweak your value propositions or ideas. Take on constructive customer criticism, and use it to grow and refine your business idea. Being out there and having real conversations with people about your business is an amazing motivational kickstarter!
Hang out with the right people
Being an entrepreneur is a lifestyle choice. And trust me, there are people in your life who are going to want you to walk away from it. Whether it’s friends who don’t get why you’re ‘always working’, or an ex-colleague who is seeding doubts in your mind, you need to learn how to block out the negativity. Other people’s negative opinions and thoughts can quickly pollute your own.
You can’t always escape from other people’s toxic opinions, so you need to counterbalance them out by hanging out with people who are going to inspire you during your journey. This could be simply sharing a coffee with a trusted mentor, or meeting with someone who has already made the transition and succeeded at becoming an entrepreneur.
Even if you can’t directly hang out with them, listening to entrepreneur podcasts is a really easy way to get access to positive people fast. Just learning from their experiences, and hearing them describe their journey, will inspire you on your own. Get listening on your commute around town and feel your levels of motivation soar.
Get an entrepreneurial headstart
You don’t have to do things the hard way in 2017 anymore. Yes, starting from scratch is satisfying, but there are so many ways to automate and growth hack entrepreneurial growth. If you are feeling a little unsure, getting a little headstart with your business is a great way to instantly boost your confidence.
- Buy a business that’s already making money and take it on yourself. For ecommerce businesses, browse websites like Exchange, or then head to ecommerce groups on Facebook and express interest in buying a store. Make sure you have a realistic budget in mind, and clarify what exactly you’re getting in the sale — you might have to pay extra for design assets, stock, or supplier contacts.
- Join a course or an online community aimed at people starting their first business. There are plenty of great courses out there that give you an awesome launchpad, but it’s wise to stick to the bigger vendors so that you’re sure you’re getting a good deal.
Start a blog
Blogging is one of the easiest ways to get out there and start testing your personal brand and resilience. Committing to sharing content and developing your blog’s audience are both great ways to see whether you are ready to run the show.
Getting feedback on your content and developing your own readership is a really empowering and positive journey. Many people love blogging so much that it ends up becoming their full-time gig, and there are a ton of cool ways to monetize a blog: from affiliate links to advertising and brand partnerships.
Be honest about your fears
By saying something out loud, we reduce it. If things are playing on your mind, getting them out there in the world can be a great way to put them into perspective.
As a budding entrepreneur, you are probably worried about things like time management, stress levels, financial stability — all of these problems can be managed by breaking them down into bitesize chunks. Don’t worry about the state of your finances ten or fifteen years down the line — look ahead to the next few months instead. Speak to a financial advisor to get some perspective, or go into a bank to talk about funding options if you’re really concerned. (And don’t forget to explore crowdfunding on sites like Kickstarter).
Stress and time management can be managed, taught, and learned. From breaking down complex tasks into 25 minute activity bursts to daily meditation — there are plenty of ways to manage a seemingly endless workload.
Don’t let fear of failure, or fear of the unknown, stop you from following your dreams. Running your own business is full of ups and downs, but it’s a great way to grow as a person. Be ready to square up and face your fears, but also be gentle with yourself. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither is a successful business!