It was October of 2006 when I decided to get SERIOUS about developing a business that would be sustainable and profitable. It took me years to learn the ropes and many mistakes later before I could safely say that I was supporting my family without dipping into savings, retirement, life insurance or credit cards.
Yes! I used all four to keep body and soul together while struggling to build something I could be proud of. The divorce came at a very inopportune time.
Business was rolling along and I was making ends meet. Barely making those ends meet – but they were meeting!
And then the economy crashed and what I provided to my customers became expendable.
I was no longer needed. I was wanted. But in those days you purchased what was needed and not wanted.
So my income plummeted and it was a couple of years before I recovered. I blame the slow recovery on my inability to learn what had to be done in enough time.
The same things happen to small businesses around the country every year. Whether they are small home based businesses or brick and mortar businesses, the owners must pay attention to the changes in the economic landscape and determine if their product will make the grade.
Originally my small business was a way to express myself creatively and enjoy a bit of income. But after the divorce it was how I put bread and butter on the table.
Having a business has provided me with more than income. I’ve learned skills I’m using with other companies to help their business grow. I’ve gained strength I never thought possible. I’m learning the fine art of networking – when I’m really just a homebody and prefer to stay behind the scenes.
And, I’m putting food on the table without worrying about paying the rent every month.
Have you considered the benefits you’d reap if you spent an hour or two a day building something you could call your own?
Most people start their own business while working for someone else. And, that’s the best way to do it.
You have the safety net of a consistent salary, while building an additional income. Eventually you might make enough to quit your day job and stay home with your children.
What would that mean to you and to them?
Independence is a hard won process, especially as a single mom. You may not want your independence. Down deep inside you might want a partner by your side who can share the burdens of everyday living. But the reality is that right now, it’s not happening.
So how can you assert your own independence, teach your children the value of hard work and ingenuity, and be satisfied each night when you lay your head on your pillow?
The additional income is a great resource. You’ll be able to go out to dinner a little more, have drinks with your friends, go to the movies or buy those special pair of boots your teenage daughter has been drooling over.
But it’s more than income.
It’s independence. And with independence is the ability to CHOOSE dependence. You have the option to choose a partner and not to feel as if you need one to fill the gaps in your life – both relational and financial.
Because with a business that you own, marketing will force you to develop relationships with other people, create a circle of friends if you don’t have and will put you outside your comfort zone.
Truth be told, the growth that yields the most is that done outside of your comfort zone, and often during a time you feel you’ve failed.
Failure isn’t failure until you refuse to get up and try something new. When you get up and keep learning you’ve started growing.
Looking back these last seven years I am blessed by the growth I’ve undergone. Whether it’s personal pain or financial instability – I’ve been growing by leaps and bounds.
It’s time to identify the areas in your life that need some tweaking and developing.
Your children are watching you. Whether you know it or not – whether they say it or not, they are watching.
You are their compass. It’s a great responsibility and an awesome future that lies before you. Your actions will affect your children and your children’s children. When you can fully grasp that concept you may be completely overwhelmed.
That’s good – it’s the start of a whole new beginning and a whole new you!
I started this article with the intention of talking about why it’s important to have your own business and how you can get it done. But I realize that there are multiple opportunities for you start something at home, and multiple people who are willing to show you how to get that done.
What I needed eight years ago was a kick in the pants to get the thing started SERIOUSLY. I don’t mean dabbling daily in checking email, reading sales copy or checking out the newest and greatest way to drive traffic to a website.
I mean getting serious about choosing a business – not a website, not a scheme, not a process – but a business.
If you want to see yourself bringing home a little extra cash every month and growing that into a thriving business, then it’s time to get serious about doing things with intention and not getting up each day, putting your head down and getting the work done.
Now is the time to look up, take stock of where you are and determine where you want to be.