Updated: Oct 3, 2019
For months, in fact years, I was constantly thinking "X, Y or Z is such a great business idea, I should do something about it." and then, nothing. What was stopping me? Two things, lack of time and the fear of failure. So, I addressed them.
Lack of time
I’m the first to say, “I have no time, I’m so busy!” When I was working full time, work was my excuse, now that I’m a mother, my toddler is my excuse and both are very valid excuses! But I realised that they are only excuses after reading this quote;
“Lack of time is lack of priorities”
- Tim Ferris
I didn’t have time to work on my business ideas, because I didn’t MAKE it! So, I started to plan my week by;
1. Making a list of my priorities - including personal admin and business goals
2. Completing a schedule for the week - including meal prep, lunch times, my little one’s classes, activities, play dates, nap times etc
3. Looking for free time each day and scheduling priorities - aiming for one a day
4. Making free time - waking up earlier, falling asleep later and watching less TV!
My plan is a guide and I limit my priorities to 3 - 5 a week, it gives me direction and when my priorities get done, I feel good. Some weeks, life happens and things don’t go to plan and not all my priorities get done, and that’s ok! There’s always next week.
I also try to schedule ‘me time’. 15 minutes a day is enough time for a brisk walk or a meditation, it helps me feel good and keeps me motivated.
I was so afraid of failing and the embarrassment that comes along with it, I would find cleaning the bathrooms more of a priority than working on my lean business plan. Sometimes, I wanted support, someone to hold my hand, share the blame with when the business didn’t work out and involved partners that were not right for me or the business and of course, we didn’t get anywhere near the failure stage.
Then I started to read about successful entrepreneurs to try and motivate myself to get started, this is where I realised a common theme in all of their stories. ALL had either started at least one business that failed or had been fired from a position in their professional career. And none of them quit pursuing THEIR definition of success. Instead, they took these “failures” and used them to learn and grow from and start successful businesses or be placed into very senior roles. If you google “Business failures of... Elon Musk, Oprah Winfrey, Bill Gates, Arianna Huffington, Donald Trump, Steve Jobs, J.K Rowling, Richard Branson, Sara Blakely, Tory Burch” (the list goes on) hundreds of articles are returned and in each one, a variation of the following quote is mentioned.
“Take action and make some mistakes along the way because that’s how we learn”
So, I don’t fear failure anymore, because I now realise by doing so, I stand still and never know what I could have learned or achieved by taking that first terrifying step.
Don’t be afraid, make time and start planning.