After leaving my corporate job, I started working independently. There was no time-clock to guide me and nothing to set boundaries for me, except ME. For every entrepreneur, freedom is one of the most important values that they uphold & cherish. They are visionaries and risk-takers too. The reason for them to break-free from the 9 am to 5 pm work cycle is to have freedom, choice, their dream lifestyle and of course their passionate purpose which they want to work upon. Once you move from a structured system to a highly flexible system, where all the time is yours; the idea is both exhilarating and daunting too. Exhilarating because you enjoy the whole time thinking about your dream, planning, articulating, ideating and then acting on those plans. While doing so, you tend to immerse so much into the process that you forget time and finally you land up working more than what you had aspired for. You are left with no control over your time and it just flies. You land up picking more assignments to fill your calendar and generate more business/income because now you are all on your own. There isn't a fixed salary every month, you need to manage your funds, your time, your energy, your being etc. That's when your leadership agility comes to play. The more depth you have in your leadership ability, the more you can lead yourself well during this journey. You know very well that entrepreneurship is not for faint-hearts but for those courageous few who can surf through the occasional tides without losing the very zeal, energy and spirit which propelled them to take this first step towards exceptional self-leadership called entrepreneurship.
Few years back, I would have dreaded even thinking about myself as an entrepreneur. I never thought on those lines because I was a person who adjusted in the default systems unwillingly ofcourse. But, when I took plunge, I just took it because there lay a vision that is much more powerful than my fears, inhibitions; there lay a purpose much bigger than my small goals; there lay an inner commitment that is much inspiring than external curbing forces. Yes, I am a Coach Entrepreneur! Only when you see yourself this way, you actually move ahead in your path towards becoming a Master Coach and a successful entrepreneur. I guess I am digressing a bit here. So, let's get back on track. It's all about leading yourself than you lead others. As entrepreneurs, you are majorly alone in this journey, at least in the initial phase. So, it is very important to be able to lead yourself effectively. Everything you do will be reflected and so will your energy. If you move ahead with fear, you will attract more fear. If you are feeling insecure, you will attract insecurity. If you walk the path without being mindful, you will attract distractions, stress and other negativity along the line. Undoubtedly you have a lofty dream, a lofty purpose; you are a master in what you do and hence you have chosen to move forward alone. But, what will determine your success eventually is your ability to lead yourself every time you fall, every time you feel low, every time you want to give up, every time you doubt yourself, every time you loose focus.....the list is endless. Here are few areas for you to ponder & lead yourself well.This is from my personal experience. If I can do it, you too can. This isn't a destination but a journey of self-discovery and mastery. A journey to connect with your essence.
1. Lead yourself towards cultivating an effective entrepreneurship mindset. You are playing the game for the long haul and not just for couple of years. There are times when you will forget your "WHY" for doing what you are doing specially during challenging and low times. That's when your entrepreneurship mindset will come to play. Lead yourself towards mastering that.
2. Lead yourself towards managing your energy and not time. Time is a limited resource but energy is limitless. Be mindful of your physical, mental, emotional and spiritual energy. Be mindful of what fills you up and what drains you. Lead yourself towards putting focus on those things that fills you and dropping things that drain you.
3. Lead yourself from a scare mindset to an abundance mindset. There is high possibility for an entrepreneur to develop the scare mindset. What you think and belief, you create. If you think of scarcity, your actions will show up and obviously the results will follow the pattern.
4. Lead yourself towards becoming a profound giver. The very reason for starting was to solve a pain point that is prevalent in your community and you are set out to solve it to add value to it. Never forget this while you create abundance for yourself. In giving you receive. Receiving is a by-product.
5. Lead yourself from becoming a workaholic to creating your dream lifestyle where you not only have a thriving business but loving relationships, happy & joyous family, your nurturing time. No point in becoming successful sans joy, love and happiness in your life. Integration is the key. Have real happy life and not just a virtual social life.
6. Lead yourself from being an individualist high performer to an inspiring leader seeking & harnessing support along the way.
7. Lead yourself from being a safe player to a risk-taker. When you feel uncomfortable, remember you are growing.
8. Lead yourself from being used to certainty to appreciating uncertainty. You might think that now everything is set, but the truth is, higher you go, you will have different challenges to overcome. So, the key is to develop your depth to be able to take on challenges as it come.
9. Lead yourself from being excited to being joyful. Excitement dies down quickly, but the state of joyfulness is the state of being that you must cultivate and be. Be joyful always.
Last but not the least, hire a good coach who will be able to support you during this transition. During our difficult times, we tend to lose our ability to decide and think. We get stuck in our habitual patterns and blind spots. That's when we hold ourselves back. It's important that we challenge ourselves during these times and keep going. Undoubtedly you will reach your destination, but with external support, you will reach it much faster, joyously and have an exponential growth.
Coach to People Leaders, Start-up Founders & Transitioning professionals