It's not what you think that's preventing you from getting started... It's THIS
Before I started my first ever side hustle seven years ago, I had so many fears around starting a business. I remember working for months and months on the launch of my first blog, Daily Inspiration Board, and everything had to be PERFECT before I went live. (Although in retrospect, it definitely wasn’t perfect anyway! Sometimes, you’ve just gotta go live and tweak as you go along the journey).
My main fears were, I now realised, pretty normal and average.
(At the time, I thought there was something wrong with me or that I was unique in thinking these things but nope - pretty much everyone does!).
These fears included (but were not limited to):
Being ‘seen’ in the world and judged
Not having enough time and/or burning myself out
Giving too much to my side-hustle and not enough to the important relationships in my life
Spending money on self-development, business support etc - and not making as much progress as I’d like
Having a client rejection (ie not winning the business), or complain or ask for their money back (if you’re someone that holds this as a hugely important factor, trust me, like me you’ll go above and beyond to ensure your clients are more than happy!)
Worry that I would have to work from home alone and would hate it
Launching something that ‘fails’ or doesn’t do as well as I want it to
The list could go on.
ALL of these fears crossed my mind (many times). And at times they felt insurmountable. There are endless ways the mind can create resistance and procrastination to prevent us from creating amazing things in the world. I’ve experienced most of them, I’m pretty sure. But still, I create. I am now full-time in my business as a senior freelance PR and communications consultant and side-hustle coach for start-ups.
But you know what? Most of those fears never eventuated, or if they did they were way less drastic than I thought they'd be and in fact, barely even a blip on my radar. The worry and fear around starting my side hustle were WAY worse than anything that has actually come to fruition.
We live in a culture that is driven by fear and lack but it doesn’t need to be the case.
In fact, the key factors that most often prevent us from moving forward in our businesses (or starting at all), regardless of all the fears that may run through our mind, are actually self-driven:
Being overwhelmed by too many ideas, resulting in a lack of clarity; being stuck and unable to move forward
Procrastination, excuses (e.g. I have no time) and other forms of resistance. (Cleaning the sock drawer, anyone?)
You CAN create a different reality. You CAN wake up on Sundays and look forward to the week. You CAN create a successful side hustle and step into it full-time. You CAN do work in the world that you enjoy, and make the world a better place while doing it. You CAN enjoy the creative process and have fun working on your business.
Fear and resistance doesn’t ever go away - not when you’re doing something truly important and worthwhile, and challenging yourself to step out of your comfort zone.
But there are ways to successfully move through it, and as you develop the skills to do so, it will become easier and easier to move forward as you get to each new level rather than staying stuck for long periods of time in fear and resistance.
Why bother? This was a question I asked myself over and over again as I sought to find a way through and over the other side of resistance.
You continuing to work in a career that you’re bored of or that you outright dislike and that doesn’t fulfil you, to feel burnt out and unchallenged, to live small and stuck… These things are not going to go away, and only YOU know if you are feeling this way. If you’ve been putting off doing what you truly want to do for days, weeks, months or years - I get it. Sometimes, we get very far down a path when we realise that it’s not what we thought or wanted - or it may have been, at one time and place, but it’s not anymore.
How would it feel to continue ignoring your desire for something more for further days, weeks, months, or years?
I know the feeling of sitting on the fence when it comes to big decisions. It’s UNCOMFORTABLE to take risks and create massive change. It’s uncomfortable to think up a business idea from scratch and launch it into the world. It’s uncomfortable to get creative and let people see this part of your soul.
But it’s WORTH IT! You just can’t do it alone - that’s all.
I have always had support in my businesses, and it’s the key way that I’ve been able to overcome resistance, fear and overwhelm to find clarity and take massive steps forward. I’m not talking about a mentor, although those are great. I am talking about investing in yourself - putting some skin in the game. Once you start to invest money into your idea and start getting the support to take strides forward to create a profitable business, that’s when you truly commit and reap the benefits of all of the lessons of someone who has walked the path before you.