So you have a 9-5. Yep, a day job, and you are trying to start and build your side hustle from just a hobby to a full blown business. Well if you’re like me then you are SKRESSED, not stressed but SKRESSED pretty much 95% of the time. This post is all about how I recognized what was stressing me and how important it is to have a supportive advisory group of friends, family and mentors in your corner to talk to as well as ways to identify the perfect person to include in your group of advisors.
So I’ve always had a lot of shit going on in my life. I’m the girl that went to school and had 3-4 extracurricular activities outside of school. I’m currently working in finance at an investment bank (in NYC no less), producing a monthly podcast, starting a jewelry business, writing an eBook (more on that later) and hosting brunches and seminars for young girls and women on following their dreams. It’s a lot!!
The key to keeping it all together is writing lists! There’s be a post about this no worries lol! Imagine hiking through a desert and needing to stay hydrated. That’s how much I need my to-do list!!
Anyway, here’s the thing, every morning (and throughout the day) when I look at my to-do list my anxiety skyrockets! I mean Apollo 13 skyrocket, straight to the moon, land on the moon then blow up on the way back to earth sky rocket. (Like Apollo 13 I always land safely back to earth so no worries lol!) For a long time I couldn’t understand why. But after careful monitoring and many conversations with trusted friends I started to realize that my overthinking and thinking about things to come is what was stressing me. NOT what is actually on my to-do list.
Take this example: Since I work in finance and also starting a creative business I am writing an eBook on how to add and create value to your business through the lens of the income statement, the most important of the three financial statements. I go over how to understand the income statement, understand your businesses profits and losses and Warren’s Buffett’s unique take on valuing companies through their profits and losses.
Sidenote: You should join my mailing list to receive my monthly newsletter and get first dibs on the ebook. I’ve just completed writing the first five chapters and if you hate finance but love your business you’ll want to check it out.
Anyway, On my to-do list for this week I listed, creating an outline and writing the introduction and conclusion as tasks to be completed. However, every time I looked at my to-do list I started thinking about how I needed to do those two tasks but also when would I actually write the book? Or when would I design the cover? Or course the cover has to be designed asap. And what about naming it? I don’t have a name yet, so that has to be done as well! And who am I going to get to read my first draft and what if no one even wants this. WHY AM I EVEN WRITING THIS THING!!
You see how I went from 0 to 100 REAL QUICK!!
My to-do list had two very easy tasks to be completed this week and instead, my brain skipped over those two easy tasks and went into overdrive about everything else that needed to be completed.
Now maybe this is just me, but I just worked myself up and SKRESSED myself out thinking about everything but the two tasks as hand. I realized that I am a worrier. And the worry about what is to come is what is stressing me not what is actually at hand. You know how I figured it out? I figured this out by having conversations with trusted friends and advisors.
What I learned is that having conversations with people you trust and love about not only your business but about the steps you are taking to complete tasks will teach you more about yourself than just reading self-help books ever will. When working as solo-preneur it’s easy to keep to yourself and keep your business affairs separate from family and friends. But if you’re like me, you are so passionate about what you are doing and all you want to do is talk about it. So why not create a group of trusted friends or find a business mentor or even a parent to talk things through. Ask them to critique your process and your logic. Ask them to listen to your struggles and what’s getting you worked up. I bet they will be able to offer insight into why you are stressing or give you ideas on how to dissipate some of your stress.
It sounds simple I know, but I’ve gotten many insights from family, friends and even coworkers that don’t know me very well. Things that I’d never come up with myself believe it or not.
If your goal is to turn your hobby into a successful business, you are embarking on one of the most difficult things you’ll ever do.
If your goal is to turn your hobby into a successful business, you are embarking on one of the most difficult things you’ll ever do. Before you continue I want you to establish a list of 3-5 people that you trust and who can speak to about your business and the inner workings of what you’re dealing with. I’m talking people that either know you well, have done what you’re trying to do successfully or have insights or experiences that you value and believe could help you on your journey.
I am a huge proponent of building a team and I want you to do just that. Even the president has a group of trusted advisors! You may be a solo-preneur but you need help. I’ll say it again, you need help and I want you to recognize the relationships you have or need to nurture to allow you to successfully navigate entrepreneurship.
Here are a couple of questions to ask yourself when creating your advisory board:
1.) How long has this person known me? If not long, have we worked on any intricate projects together or been in situations that allowed open and honest conversation?
2.) Can I trust this person?
3.) What success or experiences does this person have that I want?
4.) Can I be myself and vulnerable with this person?
5.) How can I contribute to this person’s growth?
6.) What am I trying to gain from this relationship?
7.) How often will I need to call on this person and does he/she have time to contribute to my growth?
8.) What is this person’s communication style? Will this person be brutally honest with me and how will they deliver the message?
These are just some of the questions I’ve asked when creating a team as well as when looking for mentors. There are tons more and some that relate specifically to your business but these are some of the most important.
Let me know if you’ve had success building a team on twitter and Instagram or just comment below if you have additional tips for the other readers as well.
If you know someone who is stressed and needs to build their own advisory board share this with them. Tell them they are not alone in feeling overwhelmed and I too know what they are going through!! We can get through this together!!
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