Sunday, March 22, 2009
Thoughts on Starting Your Own Business
When I decided to begin my own business, I was riddled with fears and doubts:
1) I was very doubtful about the idea of 'selling.' The entire idea of 'selling' made me feel uncomfortable. I didn't--and still don't--like the idea of pressuring anyone, so I thought maybe I was too wishy washy.
2) I was afraid that no one would come to my Kick Off Show, and I was afraid that I would never be able to develop a network. You know, like being a kid and being terrified that no one would come to your birthday party.
3) I was afraid of failing. And, if I'm completely honest, looking and feeling stupid. There is already enough in my life I feel like a stupid failure, and I'm not too fond of the thought of adding to that list.
When I decided to take the plunge, I had a long talk with my director supervisor, Rae Ann, where I shared all of my doubts and fears with her. She helped me work through each one by sharing her own experiences, as she too had the same set of fears prior to beginning her business.
As a close to our conversation, she mentioned what a blessing this business has been to her life. She commented that she feels saddened because some people are so close-minded to this opportunity, and she wishes they could understand just what a blessing it can be.
I now understand what she means.
Financially, the blessings have been undeniable. In the 3 months, I've had my own business, I've made more per hour than I ever have in my life. In fact, I made more in the first 7 weeks of my business, averaging about 1 show a week, than I made in working 15-22 hours a week for 3 months at the payment process center. What I find really amusing about that is I purposely started myself off at a "slow" pace. I didn't want to set my sights so big that I would burn out or become discouraged. I wanted to baby step my way into this. So imagine what I can do when I get up to full steam speed ahead!
The benefits are so much more than financial. My enthusiasm and positive attitude towards my business has spread into my life. I feel more confident and more upbeat about situations. I like the fact that my children see me excited. I like the fact that they see me helping other people improve their home environment and family life and health.
My kids love my Norwex business. Everytime an order arrives for me to process, they clamor around the kitchen table and help fill orders. One calls out the orders, the other grabs the items, the third bags them. They act and feel like a team.
Last week I received my first Consultant Reward Kit for reaching one for the company sales goals in February. You would have thought I won the lottery by my excited reaction! To work hard for myself and then to be rewarded for myself was something entirely new! Prior to this, I was used to working my tail off in a law firm for a full year, to earn my measly "cost of living" adjustment, plus a 1-2% raise. While the partners earned $75,000 year bonuses. I'm not saying that it was wrong of the partners to earn that, but I now question my wisdom in finding that structure acceptable for myself and settling for it.
Yet I think the greatest blessings I have received is knowing that I have helped other women make their lives easier (okay, that is a completely sexist statement, but I have yet have a man attend a show, so I'm only speaking from experience.) With every item purchased, I know that someone has made their home cleaner, their lives healthier, their pocketbooks fuller in the long run, their trashcans lighter, and their stress levels lower because cleaning because so much less time consuming and difficult.
When I see the postive returns, I am feel ashamed of my initial fears. But the important thing is that I did not let my doubts and fears define my life and actions. It took me a long time to learn that lesson, but now that I have, I am so excited to see what life will bring tomorrow.