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.