Years ago when I started looking for my first “real” full-time job (and I mean yearssss ago), I didn’t think twice about starting my journey on a traditional career path. Most of my life up to that point had been about getting good grades in school, getting into a good college (and eventually grad school program), and landing a good job that paid well. I always believed that if I worked hard, I could eventually get a good job that would allow me to do well for my family and myself.
Now when I reflect back on the path that I took, it’s interesting to realize how this was framed in my mind. My thought that if I worked hard I could get a good job… and basically work for someone else. I didn’t grow up thinking if I worked hard I could BUILD MY OWN BUSINESS. That just wasn’t in my train of thought. In addition, the thing that most people wanted to do to be “successful” when I was growing up was to become a doctor or a lawyer. So that’s what I also considered – becoming an entrepreneur just wasn’t on my radar.
But it is now. And, boy do I love it.
Why? Because just the thought that you can turn your idea into a business that not only helps others, but also allows you to support yourself and your family makes me get all excited and energized. Becoming an entrepreneur truly is a special thing – especially when you’re building a business that’s driven by your passions and purpose. Of course, it’s not easy to do. It doesn’t just happen overnight, but it is possible. And possible means just that – it’s something that CAN happen… And I’m all about that.
So if starting your own business is something you’ve considered, here are five reasons I think you should give it a shot.
- You were created for this. That special gift that only you have… Well, you have that “thing” for a reason. We each have unique abilities, talents and contributions to offer the world, but oftentimes we don’t think they’re “enough” or “special”. Don’t sell yourself short. No one can replicate you. No one can combine the life experience, knowledge and insight that you bring to the table. Because of that you’re going to connect with someone on a level that no one else can, and you’re going to build a business that embodies that in a way that no one else can. Someone needs exactly what you have to offer in the way that you have to offer it. You just have to put yourself out there so that you can find those people and they can find you.
- You need to be doing work that you feel more connected to. We spend A LOT of time at work. And, I mean a lot. When I got my first real job after grad school the amount of time we spend at work really hit me. I had previously worked full-time jobs while in school, so working that amount of time each week wasn’t new to me. But something felt different about it. That something was the realization of the new “norm” that was going to be my life. It was no longer about balancing school and work for a semester or school year. It had turned into work all day everyday, and that was it… potentially forever. I realized that if I was going to be spending that much time at work for the rest of my life – time away from other priorities and things that were important to me – I wanted to make it worth it. I wanted to do work that I felt connected to. Of course, you’re not going to love everything about building a business, but at least you’ll be able to build something with purpose behind it that feels meaningful.
- You don’t have to make the full leap now (and it’s probably best that way). I’m sure there’s a lot of anxiety that comes up when you think about leaving your current job and starting your own biz. Will you make enough money to support yourself? Are you throwing away all the time and money you’ve invested into building your current career? Are you crazy for even considering this? Trust me. I get it. These are all things I struggled with for a really long time. Although I did end up quitting my full-time job, I did so after a year of serious planning and intentional saving. For the most part, I always recommend that people start building their biz while they’re still working. Starting a business is not easy and building a business takes time. Give yourself some time to try out your business idea, while you still have the security of your regular paycheck. That will also give you the space to explore if you really want to go with it, because you could find out that starting a business is not for you or you could realize you’re really not into the idea you thought you would love. I’ll never say it’s an easy thing to start a biz on the side while still working, but I will say it’s a wise thing to do.
- IT IS NOT TOO LATE. Can you tell that I’m emphasizing this one? How many times have you told yourself that it’s too late? That you’re too old, or everyone else is way ahead of you and you’re too late into the game to get started? Listen… Stop. Just stop. The only thing you’re doing by having these self-doubts on replay in your head is slowing yourself down and mentally bringing yourself down. You can’t change the past. Sure, maybe it would have been great if you started your business five years ago, but you didn’t. And that’s okay. You have NOW, and you can do something now. Don’t take that for granted. In addition, you have to let go of constantly comparing yourself to others. Maybe so and so is way ahead of where you are right now and is doing exactly what you want to be doing. That’s okay. Be happy for her and her success and know that you can get there too. But you have to start, and there’s no better time to do that than now.
- You can make money doing what you love. Maybe you think there’s no way you’ll ever be able to make money doing what you love. Let me ask you this: How do you know until you try? You have no idea what’s possible until you give it a shot. And if you experiment and try things out while also maintaining your full-time job, there’s less risk involved. Besides that, it all depends on what you want and what you’re looking for. Some people know they want to create a full-time career out of their passions, while other people just want to make some extra money on the side. Either way works; it’s just a matter of personal preference. If you’re passionate about something and it allows you to bring in some extra income on the side, that’s a win. If you know your ultimate goal is to turn your idea into a full-time business, that’s also a win. There’s no one-size fits all solution when it comes to building a business. You can structure your business to grow as a side-hustle or full-time business. Either way, you’ll have the opportunity to make money doing what you love.
So there you have it. Five reasons I think it’s worth turning your passions into a business. I want to hear from you. What’s been holding you back from turning your passions into a business? What do you think it will take for you to make the leap and try out your biz idea? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.
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