Business Tips and Tricks

What Are Your Obstacles?

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When I graduated college, work was all about moving up in the corporate world.  I never thought about being my own boss.  To me that was a lonely life – I needed people.

My first home-based business was “Special Tots” a line of premature baby clothes.  I designed them, cut them out, sewed them and then marketed them.  I loved it but I was not ready to be my own boss.  Then came “H.O.P.E. Consultants”, a grant management and consulting service for non-profit agencies.  A success but I missed the daily connections with people.  When I closed those doors to go back to non-profit development, I never thought I would be by own boss again.

Then life changed – Belinda was living in North Carolina, the commute to work was 4 hours round trip, I got married and there were some health struggles.  The pros of being my own boss: making my own hours, no commuting and doing something I loved far outweighed the BIGGEST con which was the lack of people.  YUP, I was ALONE.

Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE my business.  But it tends to be solitary work. I write alone. I sit in the office alone talking to people on the phone.  I coach alone, mostly by phone.  I work from home, my team scattered about this and other states. The crazy part is that I question my passion when being “alone” gets lonely.

What’s missing is the connections!  Connection isn’t just “networking.” Connection isn’t just collaboration. Connection isn’t just communicating with people. I love how Valerie Burton describes it: “Connection is love. It is the moment, however brief, when your soul aligns with another and you serve one another’s needs in some way. It could be a smile, a touch, an idea, a word of encouragement, or act of support. But connection makes life and work juice”.  This is just one of the hurdles that you can expect when you work a solo-preneur.

How about blending Your Work Life with Your Home Life?  Most people enjoy the fact that an office job gives them the ability to leave their work at the office. This is tricky if you’re working in your home, and even tougher for those you live with. I have a separate office space in the house – a spare bedroom.  It prevents my business from intruding into every aspect of our personal lives– for the most part.  At least the physical aspects of it.  The advantage is that there is  no commuting!  Blending is a lot easier if you build your business around something you’re personally passionate about.

How about working longer and harder than ever before?  Many entrepreneurs say “I work from the minute I wake up until the minute I go to sleep.”  That may be the case some days, but it will be especially true in the beginning.  You will do whatever it takes to get your business going.  The advantage is that you will work longer and harder, but it’s ultimately for your own gain.  Nothing is more satisfying than that!  While you will make time sacrifices, you’ll also have more flexibility.  I ultimately have the ability to change my schedule when I need to. There are certainly sacrifices toward owning your own business, but for successful entrepreneurs, the advantages far outweigh the difficulties.

No matter what the obstacle in owning your own home-based business, there is a solution.  The passion you have for your business combined with the desire to reach your goal will help you find that solution.  Need help finding those solutions, reach out… I will be more than happy to help you on your journey.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

 

 

Hope Wissel, So You Want to be a Leader?

Will You Ask for Help

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Today is the first “official” day of the Beacon of Hope Leadership Retreat and I am sure it will be a roller coaster of emotion for me.  How do I know?  Because we are going to be working on our vision and tying it to our emotional why.  YIKES!

For those who know me, they will probably agree that asking for help is not one of my strong points.  I will readily admit my weaknesses but I always feel like I am “bothering someone” when I ask for help.  I remember watching my dad build and fix everything when I was growing.  Mom never asked for help either – even when my parents divorced and things were tough.

I leaped into my first business “Special Tots”, handmade premature baby clothes with both feet.  I struggled because I had no real business sense.  I was a crafter who loved making the clothes and helping parents of prematures – long before there was a market like this.  I ended up closing that business because I was not ready for the next growth spurt AND I didn’t ask for help.

When Belinda arrived on the scene, I was a single mom working full-time and in the midst of my addiction.  Did I ask for help?  NO!  Family offered and in only extreme cases I did ask or should I say “drop subtle hints” for help.  I often felt alone and very unprepared for this season of my life.

Then came recovery from my addiction.  WOW!  If that wasn’t a wake-up call.  I needed to ask for AND accept help.  Although people were willing to help, on the outside I was gracious but on the inside, I was a mess.  I felt like I was a burden, inconveniencing people, whining and so unworthy of any praise for accomplishments along the way.

There’s a world of wisdom, open hearts, caring arms, and gentle smiles just waiting for an opportunity to give in some way. (Matthew 5:16)

How I wish I could have realized this truth sooner. How many tears I could have saved and how much stress I could have relieved myself from! Satan wants us to believe the lie that no matter what our “need” is, we are a bother to someone or an inconvenience. 

Whenever I hear that lie being whispered in my ear, I think of the people that I know who would drop anything and come running to help or encourage me.  I freely give the gift of me to others but when it comes to receiving, I definitely struggle.

So, as I seek my emotional why today and visual my goal; I will ask for help.  I will not believe Satan’s lie that I am a bother, a complainer or unworthy.  I will receive the gift of someone’s help so that they can feel the same blessings that I feel when I give to someone else.

All of this was on my heart as I prepare for today and I hope that it has touched someone who is struggling.  Struggling with asking for help whether it is in your personal life or your business.

We all fall short and sometimes it is not easy to admit that we need help. That we need someone to pull us out of a deep abyss.   If you are one in need, ask for help, trust me – someone is just waiting to be asked.