Secrets to Entrepreneurship #10 – Survival to Strategy
Whether you realize it, or not, when you first start out as an entrepreneur – you will be functioning in survival mode. Survival mode is different for all of us, as some will have more of a nest egg than others, but the truth is, unless you are able to carry yourself for min. 5 years without making $1 – you are in survival mode.
Being a survivor can invoke negative feelings – in this case it is actually quite the opposite. It is POSITIVE! It means you have taken the risk to live your dream, and you are moving forward, giving everything you have to this quest. When you start, it is hard to reverse the habits, schedules, spending patterns, connections that you had at a corporate job. These routines were firmly part of your life for (most likely) a number of years Changing over night (or seemingly so) to a completely new schedule, or pattern, will be met with resistance and prickly feelings. Even though you dreamt of this your whole life, as humans, we crave routine and stability. You have just blown both of those wide open!
The survival stage can sit with you for months, even year, but the true moment it switches from survival to strategy is when you fully accept that this new way of life, is your life. When I first started, every Sunday night I still felt like I was going to my corporate job in the morning. I still got up at the same time, still followed some of the routines. I missed my friends, clients and even some of the routine tasks I used to do – simply because I KNEW what to do in that world. In this new world, I had a bunch of questions, and I had to figure things out quickly – without a road map. I was prepared, but I was still scrambling every day to feel like I could make this happen for myself, and that I was strong enough to stay the course.
On April 24, 2017 – 4 months (minus 2 days) from the date I embarked on the entrepreneur train I FINALLY felt like – I can do this! On that day I had a moment where I switched from survival to, what I call, strategy. Making the switch meant I wasn’t holding onto every little thing that happened. I let myself finally breathe a little (not all the way but enough to switch out of survival mode). In that moment – my confidence quadrupled! I suddenly felt valuable in the services I was offering – I felt alive! As for my business – I switched form taking everything that came my way to turning down some business. Instead of solely thinking about money, I was thinking about what would happen in 1 year, 5 years and what type of business I wanted to be. What did I need to let go of (scary!!!!!) in order to nurture the parts that I wanted to grow?
This is such a turning point in the life of an entrepreneur because it is the moment that you are starting to take control of your company, your offering, your client base – your future. You feel strong enough to push back what doesn’t fit and to fiercely go after what you want. It is narrowing down the steps to the ultimate goal, and fine tuning, in a way that you never dreamt possible.
This moment of bliss for me was SO welcome – as doubt is a terrible hurdle to have to leap over everyday. Being able to leave doubt behind (most days) and just march forward with SUCCESS on the brain is an energy restoring blessing. You go through this amazing transformation, and suddenly, you’re in a whole other place. You are granted the luxury of making decisions based on a goal, rather than, simply keeping your head above water. And that, my friends, is the beginning of building the business you really want and creating the strategy to get there. YES!
Until next time – dream, experience and love your life.
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