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You Might As Well Quit!

I’ve been reminded recently by quite a few small business owners that they felt that they didn’t really feel like they had much choice about becoming self-employed and also reminded that some of them still resent what they consider their options being limited, due to no fault of their own.

They find they are struggling to make a serious go of building a viable business and feel totally out of their depth with what they consider to be very little practical supports for them.  The ones that are there, from their perspective, are extremely limited or out of their price range and they are really struggling.

So what makes someone who would prefer to be an employee become a business owner? Well there are many reasons and I’m sure you will know some people who fit into these descriptions, do add others that I have omitted from this list:

They’ve been made redundant (or, worse just let go with no redundancy package at all) and can’t get employment in their current field of expertise.  They feel the pressure to do something as they still have a family to feed, a mortgage to pay along with the other commitments they made while they were still in paid employment with a rosy future ahead.

They have been told that the company they currently work in is downsizing, their position will be outsourced in future and it has been suggested that they apply for the consultancy position as a self-employed person.  This happened to many tradesmen in the building boom, many of whom had serious problems getting support when the downturn came.

They have gone to college, got the degree, sometimes a post-graduate degree and can’t get a job in their field of expertise. They have difficulty even getting an internship in their area as the competition for these is so great.  They know they have the skills, what they are lacking is a matching amount of experience.

They have switched careers, trained in a new one because they saw the downturn coming and decided to take action, re-train so as to be employable when it hit, only to find they are in the same boat as the college graduates, top heavy in knowledge, yet lacking in experience.

The one thing all of these people have in common is a reluctance for where they currently are in their careers.  This very reluctance is putting all sorts of obstacles in their way.  What they don’t seem to realise is that a simple shift in mindset could make all the difference to how they not only run their business, but how much more they would enjoy being self-employed.

We all have choices to make, on a daily basis and how we view them, then act upon them affects our results.   Okay, so the job has gone down the Swanee and you are up the creek without a paddle, so use your hands to move instead of waving them about in the air.  Become pro-active.

Setting up in business reluctantly and then whinging and moaning about how hard things are is not being pro-active.  Putting your hands in the air when you come across a few obstacles and sighing in defeat is not being pro-active either.

I know it can sound trite to say have an attitude of gratitude, yet it really does work once you practice it.  Yes it is difficult, now, but consider how much more difficult it would be with nothing to get out of bed for every morning.  Keep at it, put your very best efforts into it instead of just enough to make it work and you will start to see the results you want.  Find the positives about being self employed instead of the negatives.

Be willing to ask for help in areas other than the conventional ones, you’ve already stepped outside your comfort zone by becoming self-employed, now step a little further and ask for help from those who have been there and done it already.  Find out what they did when they said to themselves: “you might as well quit…!” but didn’t.

What do you say to yourself when you hit a wall or it all seems a little too much?  Please share them here, let’s see if we can build up a good motivational list for everyone to use on their bad days.

Mairéad Kelly developed the Cute Honey System - Business training, coaching & mentoring for Mumpreneurs & Mum Biz Owners who want to buzz their business into a hive of productivity while raising young children & often can’t get out to training events, morning or evening network events due to family commitments and/or a lack of finances.

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  • Anonymous

    u00a0Great post Mairead.nI really dislikeu00a0wastingu00a0time for example. The problem is that I have it so incorporated that sometimes, when hitting the wall, the feeling of wasting time and going backwards takes over. That doesn’t make sense, especially knowing already that we fail way more compared to the wins we achieve.nRecently I managed to digest that “waste of time” as something more natural and started to incorporate a bit more a good friend called “patience”. Once youu00a0acknowledgeu00a0that it is OK to try again, you “let go”. This means trying again and not feeling stressed afterwards (thinking about the time wasted).

  • Hi Mairead, It’s understandable that staying motivatedu00a0isu00a0difficultu00a0for a lot of business people right now;nmy attitude has always been to look for the opportunity that exists in every situation. Too many of us continue to think that there is value in trying to push boulders up mountains, thereu2019s not! u00a0Too many of us believe that there is value in trying to sell stuff to people that really donu2019t want it, thereu2019s not! Talk to customers, find out exactly what they need now and build your offering around this. When things are difficult, this is the very best time to innovate, to be creative, to explore new ways of doing.

  • Derbhile

    It’s like you said before. You have to experience the bad days in order to experience the really good ones.u00a0

  • Having a bad day? A bad week? A bad month? I have had them all!nEvery good moment/day/week/month passes. By default, every bad moment/day/week/month also passes.nnSo it will pass, the trick is to accept that (like Fred below) explore new things (like Niall below) and appreciate that we are privileged to experience both good and bad days because as Derbhile says, we have to see the bad days to experience also the good days.nnAcceptance and non-resistanceu00a0 I find work well (and then, move on…) 🙂

  • Absolutely Derbhile.u00a0 The point is most of us are positive about being self-employed and enjoy it.u00a0 For those who feel/felt it was thrust upon them often need to take the blinkers off to see the wonderful opportunity they have in front of them.

  • We wouldn’t be human without the bad days Elaine, to me they are reminders to take stock of where I currently am compared to where I was previously and note the distance travelled.u00a0 The trick for those who feel pushed into it is as you say to accept it, from there moving forward becomes easier.

  • We all need “down time” Fred.u00a0 Sometimes we become so impatient to get where we are going that we consider “non actively productive time” as a waste of time when often it is a “reflective time” instead.u00a0 Another lovely name for it is Patience, lol.

  • u00a0Ah you are a rare breed Niall that looks for the opportunity that exists in every situation.u00a0 Many people only look for it in the situations they like being in and forget about it in the one’s they’d rather not be in.u00a0 nnPart of the problem as I see it is many people have set up in business using old their old mindset beliefs because that is what they know and resent where they are, when a simple mindset shift like looking for new opportunities in the way they operate could and often do make gigantic leaps in their results.

  • Anonymous

    Great post Mairead. u00a0Coming from a background of eternal worriers I always need to challenge myself to remainu00a0positive and look on the bright side. u00a0Always made much easier by having great posts like this to read on Bloggertone :-)u00a0u00a0

  • It’s taken me a long time to cop on, so I wouldn’t suggest I’m that rare! I just managed to buy a lot of tee-shirts along the way and survive. I come from a traditional sales background, results were about the hard yards. That was my mindset and the my results reflected it, I generally got there but I had to work very hard for it. Now because I see thingsu00a0differentlyu00a0the results are much easier to come by :)the results are much easier to come by 🙂

  • Greatu00a0post Mairead. When I hit a wall I try to think about what advice I would give someone else in the same situation. Sometimes we can’t help ourselves but stepping back from the situation can really help to gain perspective. I think that a break can also be a great idea and not being afraid to change. I am starting to realise that the only limits for my business are me so it is me that needs to grow and change.

  • I think you are being too hard on yourself.u00a0 Where you you personnaly rank yourself in your field of expertise (public answer not required)u00a0 I’d say that you are fairly high up it, then you DO think differently and that your results reflect that.u00a0 You are still years younger than me, HAVE learnt quickly and embraced the changes, there are still far too many knocking their heads against the wall saying “it’s not fair, it’s just not fair”.u00a0 A great book to help with making that simple mindset change is Who Moved My Cheese?u00a0 Powerful reading with a simple and extremely effective message.

  • u00a0Thanks Frank, I wonder sometimes if I’m posting useful information and it is the feedback that I get back here and on my personal blog that confirms that I am.

  • u00a0Great insights Beatrice.u00a0 That is a fantastic idea to put yourself in the 3rd perspective and see how you would advise someone else, it helps us to detach emotionally from the issue and think in a clearer manner. nnAs you grow your business will grow with you and the more you grow the more it will.

  • Anonymous

    Mairead,nnYour post points to something that cannot be emphasised enough!u00a0A positive mindset can make even the most miserable circumstances tolerable. nnMyu00a0best tips for keeping your chin up:nnTalk to someone you can trust. There are more establishedu00a0business owners who want to share their wisdom and mentor someone. If not a mentor, a peer thatu00a0has a positive mindset also and is willing to be your accountability partners.u00a0 Someu00a0peers I met through a networking group setu00a0up a mastermind group. These are au00a0few of the options thatu00a0have either low cost or no cost. nnThere’s no guarantee that your business will survive.u00a0However, running your business from a gloomy and fearful mindset will limit your success. u00a0If you aren’t thinking clearly, you can’t plan foru00a0and respond to the good stuff when it crosses your path.

  • Thanks Elli, some really brilliant tips there for helping when it gets on top of us and having a positive mindset can help taking those steps much much easier.u00a0 nnIt’s very true a fearful mindset fogs up our thinking and it’s bad enough driving in fog, even harder living surrounded constantly by it, a good gust of fresh clear thinking can make a huge difference to how you deal with it the next time it starts to settle around you.

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