b&b113 All the parts that suck about running a business
Don’t get us wrong. We wouldn’t have it any other way. But there are just some things (lots of things) about running a business that just really suck.
From no one caring about your business, to crippling self doubt, to realizing you have to be a salesperson, to comparing yourself to others, it can all feel like a whole lot of work for a whole lot of nothing.
So after we spend some time talking you out of it, we tell you why we still do it anyway, day in and day out. What makes all of this really worth it?
If you’re thinking of starting a business or you’re right in the middle of it, this show will make you feel like you’re not the only one. We promise!
Dyalekt: The thing about hard work is hard work can be so distracting…When you’re in it you’re too busy to worry about the other stuff that you would worry about.
Pam: The hardest thing about running a business, period, and one of the shittiest parts of it, is really just trying to get it off the ground. Having that first year growing pains of you have this idea, nobody knows about it yet, who do you start to tell about it? You tell your friends. You tell your family. Maybe they care, maybe they don’t, but the reality is that you’ve decided to do this and getting off the ground and even getting that first customer is so hard.
Dyalekt: If you’re selling a thing where it’s not like a one-on-one practice where you can fake it like you’ve done it a million times, going in to that previously untouched place, or having someone be like “Yeah, you’re my first thing.” First of all clients are put off by it, and for you, it’s hard for you to maintain that air of a business.
Pam: Anytime you try to do anything new, even in your existing business, you feel like a fraud. Trying to put on a group Brunch & Budget for instance, for the first time, and having one person show up and two of your friends, and that one person who paid realized…and then the best part was that she was a blogger so she wrote about it….The best thing to do is just to do it again, and to see how it feels to do it again.
Pam: Especially right at the beginning, it’s so easy to get caught up in stuff that doesn’t really matter. And what I mean by that is: What does the website look like? What are my business colors? I need business cards. Should I have swag? What’s my tagline gonna be? I need to start marketing. I need to have shiny marketing material…It’s one thing to have copy on your website that people really understand, it’s another thing, where I’ve made this mistake, of nitpicking on my website instead of going out there and meeting people, because meeting people is the hard part.
Pam: Your biggest worry isn’t that someone is gonna steal your idea. Your biggest worry should be that no one is actually going to care.
Pam: You’re not trying to sell this to everybody. Your business is not for everybody.
Pam: Once you realize that not everyone is a fit for your business, then it becomes much easier to try and figure out “Okay, so who is a fit for my business? Who am I actually speaking to?” It makes the copy much easier to write on your website. It makes it much easier for you to decide which networking events to go to. What blogs to spend time commenting on. What kind of content to write. What kind of podcast to run. All of that kind of stuff just becomes way easier when you realize “Hey, I know who I’m talking to.”
Pam: There’s no one telling you whether or not you’re doing a good job, and this is where the self doubt comes in, ‘cause you’re like “What the heck is the point of all this anyway?”
Dyalekt: And that’s why they’ve got handlers at your job. Because you can wonder all this at your job too, but someone will be there to keep ushering you along and be like “Eh, doesn’t matter. Keep doing this anyway.”
Pam: The other hard thing about running your own business is when you have an off day, that doesn’t mean you still get paid.
Pam: No one is telling you to pick yourself back up and keep going. If you let this happen for too long, then your business suffers at the same time.
Pam: One of the things that really helped me in my first year and really anchored me….is to do cash flow projections. And cash flow projections is just a fancy way to say “What are your financial goals for the business?” And I think the benchmark can’t get any more clear than that when it comes to running your own business. And that’ll give you a place to anchor all of these fears in a lot of ways, and all of these questions about whether or not you’re making progress. I think making progress as concrete as possible is one of the most critical things that you need to do for yourself as a business owner, and you have to do it when there’s no emotion.
Pam: When you’re in that situation where you’re in that trough of sorrow, I think you need to not be thinking about the business. I think you need to figure out a way to remove yourself from it because that’s where your emotions are coming from. So this is where you need to start taking care of yourself a little bit. And you probably got in that position in the first place because you burnt yourself out from trying to run your business that you ran your personal self into the ground.
Pam: It’s not like a job where you can separate yourself when you leave the job anymore. When you are running your own business, it’s your life…It can take over your personal life in a way that you weren’t expecting it to.
Pam: To build a skill that has nothing to do with your business but will indirectly enhance it is a really great way to make you feel like you’re doing something for your business but also something that gives you a little bit of that self-care.
Dyalekt: If you’re an artist, or if you’re a creative type, when you distract yourself it’d be nice if you could find yourself a non-work project to be your thing…So as a way to distract yourself, doing the same thing that you’re doing anyway but do it for fun.
Pam: If my goal is to make sure that everyone has an amazing financial planning experience, I have to realize that…it’s not necessarily going to be with me. And I have to be okay with that.
Pam: It’s from us but it’s not about us.
Pam: You don’t need to connect with everyone. You just need to find your people.