Top Three Lessons I've Learned in My First Year
I am coming up on almost a full year since I began posting on Instagram as Your Social Statement, and it's already been a bit over year since I've been plotting and scheming this business venture. It has been quite the ride so far with plenty of ups and downs, but all worth the while. So I decided to share with you the top three things I have learned in the past year, and I hope that they resonate with you whether you're just starting out or you've been around for many years.
You Must Set Boundaries
I really do enjoy going above and beyond for my clients. In fact, when you are providing a service, I do believe it is a must. I want to be there for my clients whenever they need me, and when I first started out, I could. I only had one client. ;) But then I got two, then three, then four and things got busy and hectic. There was a point when I began to wonder what I had gotten myself into because I wasn't sure how I was going to give everyone the attention that they deserved. I began to figure out the time needed to be set aside for each client instead of juggling everything all at once. This meant that my clients didn't have access to me 24/7 but they did have time dedicated solely to them. Communicating that is key, and everyone is much better off for it. I definitely feel more productive, and feel sure that everyone has been taken care of.
You Must Take a Break
As an entrepreneur, I know we are always working. I know that we are passionate, and we love the challenge, and the benefits, and everything that comes with pursuing our dreams. In the beginning, I was BUSTING my butt. I did not let myself relax, and you can probably guess what happened next. I got burnt out, and I was no where near my goals! I learned that in order for me to give my very best, I need some time to rest and recharge, and I know that you do to. This probably goes with setting boundaries, but it's ok to tell your clients that Sundays are your off day. It's ok to tell yourself you don't have to answer phone calls after 9pm, clients or not. After a short break, I feel even more ready to tackle my to-do list. I know those busy weeks when all your deadlines seem to hit at once, but even if it's just for an hour, sit down, and enjoy your lunch. I talk more about taking a break here.
Feelings of Fear and Guilt are Hard to Overcome
I think this is the hardest thing to learn or get though, and these feeling still show up for me although not as often as in the beginning. These feelings are probably why my previous lessons exist. Feeling like a fraud or the feelings of guilt when you're not working are rough. I don't really have an answer about how to handle these emotions when they rear their ugly heads. I sort of stop, and tell myself that it's ok to set boundaries, it's ok to take a break, that the pros of doing these things far outweigh the cons. I try to be nice to myself, and tell myself that I do my best everyday. I talk to other entrepreneurs often, and I know that I am not alone in these feelings, and if you are feeling these things, you are not alone. You started a business! That's incredible, and I want you to believe in yourself every single day.
I'd love to hear about any lessons you've learned whether you had your business for ten minutes or ten years or if any of this resonated with you, leave your thoughts in the comments.