Dear Me in 2017,
I sit here 2 years on and there are some things you really need to know. So much has changed and yet in some ways it feels as though nothing has changed. This is not going to be an easy journey but it will be worth it…
When I made the decision to set up my own business, I was pregnant with my baby girl. I knew I didn’t want to go back to work full time. I knew I wanted to be a ‘real’ mum to my baby, watch her first steps, see her personality develop and capture all of those firsts I had coming my way.
It was terrifying. Did I really have the skills to make this a success? Would it give me the life I wanted, the income I needed and the time at home I dreamt about?
I knew it was going to be hard work, but I never imagined it would take this long. Naive? Absolutely! Surely everyone knows you can’t build a business overnight.
But I was excited. This was a challenge, an opportunity to prove my worth and I was going at it full force. I joined some fantastic groups that gave me the advice I needed to get set up. I completed some courses that gave me the tools, covered all the bases and started to get my name out there.
Then, falling pregnant again so quickly with my second, still on maternity leave with my princess, those doubts crept in again! What am I doing? I can’t raise two kids and build a business! I still hadn’t even secured my first client. Was this a pipedream that would never come to fruition?
So everything takes a sideline – the business, my ‘job’, my social life, even to some extent, my marriage. I had to come to terms with being a mum of two tiny little people that depended on me for EVERYTHING!
This was the hardest part for me. I had some really low moments when I believed I would never be good enough. I had no idea what I was doing. I struggled with the thought of being a mum to two. It took me a while to bond with my little boy because I was scared. Scared that I couldn’t love him as much as my first. Scared I couldn’t divide my time equally. Scared I would end up failing both of them, emotionally, physically and financially.
Don’t get me wrong, I had a fantastic support network around me but they didn’t really know what I was feeling. I couldn’t tell them. I was on my own, stuck in my own head and not really knowing where to turn.
After the realisation that I had no choice, I HAD to make this work, I got some help and my focus began to shift. The business became a priority. I reviewed everything I had set up 18 months previously, got my website up and running, started managing my social media and very quickly secured my first client. It began to feel like everything was slotting into place. My time with my family began to feel more natural and I began to feel more in control.
‘It is still very early days but I can promise you one thing… YOU CAN DO THIS!!
You have the knowledge, You have the experience and every new enquiry builds confidence in you that you will make this business work.’
Of course I still have days where I question everything. Yes every time an enquiry doesn’t convert to a contract I feel disheartened but I know the most important thing is to just keep going, keep showing up, keep doing me. It will all pay off in the end.
I look forward to what the future will bring because I know that I am on the way up. I haven’t yet met my first set of goals but I have a fire in me and it will get me through.
Whenever things start to get tough, I look at those beautiful babies and I know I am doing the right thing. All of this is for them, to give them the life they deserve and because of that, I will keep going and I will be the success I know I can be.
What do you wish you would have known before starting your entrepreneurial journey?