Do you resonate with wanting more than a check-the-box kind of life? As an entrepreneur, my guess is you answered, “YES!” You want the time and freedom that working for yourself provides. Perhaps you want to make an impact on the world. Maybe you just want to do life and business on your own terms and actually enjoy your life, not just tolerate it.
I ditched my 9-to-5 job two years ago for many of these same reasons. As a mom, I struggled with work/life balance and mom guilt to a crippling degree. I desperately wanted more time freedom so that I could be with my young daughter more and actually appreciate our time together rather than be distracted by the incessant knocking of my to-do list at the backdoor of my brain. I felt a calling to do more than maintain a job that looked successful on the outside and filled my pockets, yet felt like a slow death on the inside. I didn’t want to regret not going for something bigger, something more meaningful and fulfilling. After all, I had a daughter who was learning how to do life from my every move. I wanted to model a life well lived, not a life well tolerated.
While I don’t regret leaving my 9-to-5 at all (like ever!), I’d be lying if I said running and trying to grow a business is easy. Growing a business from the ground up is effing hard and is not for the faint of heart. The struggle is real and it can bog me down sometimes when I don’t make as many sales as I thought I would or when a social post is met with crickets.
I know I’m not alone.
All entrepreneurs have times when they feel the same, regardless of their level of success and how long they’ve been in business. I know this to be true because I see and hear other female entrepreneurs voice their struggles and challenges in networking meetings and online.
It’s normal for us to sometimes question whether we’re cut out for entrepreneurship and whether or not we have the resilience it takes to attain the level of success we seek. To that end, I wanted to share two key antidotes I’ve found to self-doubt: growth and connection.
As a life and mindset coach, I work tirelessly to help others adopt a growth mindset. Entrepreneurs encounter new challenges frequently, making us question our capabilities and our ability to stretch outside our comfort zones. A growth mindset allows us to see problems as opportunities, not as struggles to fix or resist. That perspective shift carries a completely different energy, one that is lighter, creative and solution-driven, enabling us to grow our businesses faster and easier.
Connection with other entrepreneurs, especially female entrepreneurs, is essential to combat our inevitable doubts. When facing new or unprecedented challenges (hello, pandemic), it’s easy to feel like we’re alone and stuck.
Sharing our struggles with other business owners, attending networking meetings or even participating in a mastermind can help us see that we’re not alone and help to spawn ideas and offer perspectives that we couldn’t have reached on our own. Those connections may also lead to collaborative efforts that yield incredible results for all involved.
I believe the growth of our businesses is commensurate with the rate at which we’re willing to grow ourselves, mentally and emotionally. And connection with others is not just vital for our well-being and our continued ambition, but the diversity it brings to our business strategy might just accelerate our efforts beyond our wildest dreams. And living a life beyond our wildest dreams is definitely more than a check-the-box kinda life.
Tina Unrue is a certified life and mindset coach and the founder and owner of Selfish Mama. She helps moms learn to live from the inside out so they can actually enjoy life, not just survive it. She can be found at: www.selfishmama.com and on social: IG @realselfishmama | FB: @selfishmama