Words By Tara Wagner

Advice I’d Give to New Entrepreneurs After 20 Years Self-Employed

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I had someone ask me what advice I would give to new entrepreneurs having been one myself for 20 years now, and after thinking about it really I think it all boils down to two things.

Watch here or read below.

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2 important things about this blog/video

#1 – This was recorded just before the current crisis exploded, so while the advice does not specifically talk about the struggles you’re currently facing it’s still extremely applicable and I encourage you to start here.

#2 – In my follow-up blog/video to this one, I share strategies to survive the financial crisis we’re all facing and/or fearing with tips to make your business recession-proof; drawing on my 20 years of experience as a full-time entrepreneur who’s actually started a business during a recession.

So dive into this one, but make sure you don’t miss 12 Recession Proof Business Tips to Help You Survive and Thrive

My trials and errors

I have had service-based businesses, product-based businesses, and direct sales businesses online and offline.

Some of them wildly successful, some of them wildly nightmarish, but had I understood these 2 things 20 years ago my first business probably would not have made me as sick as it made me.

Let me actually take you back to the beginning when I was 18 years old. I first got certified as a massage therapist and started working for myself part-time when I was 20. I went full-time and I was kind of freelancing – meaning I had the license and I would work or contract with other companies that would send me out to do mobile massages in homes or in hotels, such as through the concierge.

After about only 6 months of doing that one of the main gals that contracted me decided to close her business and I looked at what she was doing and I was like “you know what… I can totally do that“. So I did what everybody did back in theday I put an ad in the phonebook.

Now, we live in Vegas the phone book that back then was SUPER thick, it was like a booster seat for children – no one ever uses it, and that was my main form of marketing.

Over the next 8 years, I built my business. First independently building my own practice, then contracting other therapists to work with me. But because I didn’t understand these 2 things I worked myself almost to death. I was working 7 days a week, 16 hours a day… my family was suffering at my health started suffering, my body was suffering, and ultimately

I ended up closing that business – I sold it – but practically gave it away just because I had reached such a level of burnout.

Fuel Your Passion in handwriting-esque neon lights
2 Fundamental Things

Here’s the thing – my business and your business can only grow when we are consistently working on two things pretty much simultaneously and that is:

  • Our foundational skills specific to our business
  • Our mindset

I didn’t understand this in my first business. I didn’t understand that the level of skills and the level of thinking that brought me to one level of success were not going to bring me to the next one. You ARE your business. You are the most important tool of your business, you’re the most important strategist in your business, you’re the most important everything in your business. And you will be the bottleneck if you are not constantly developing the things that will allow you to develop the business.

I want you to write down 2 questions:

  • #1 – What skills do I need?
  • #2 – Who do I need to be?

I just did a video on creating a personal development plan that takes those 2 questions (and several more) and helps you to actually create a plan – something that you can execute every day or every week that’s gonna allow you to continue to develop the skills and the mindset that will allow you to grow your business.

And yes I do think that we need to be working on one or both of these at least for a few minutes every single day.

If you’re too busy to work on these 2 things you’re too busy to have a successful business.

The habits that you’re working on today, both personal and professional, will determine the trajectory of both yourself and your business – whether you are steadily inclining or steadily declining – because the thing is: things don’t naturally grow without a little bit of help, without some support, without some protection, without some strategy…

If you’re ignoring the things that allow you to innovate, to continue to solve problems, to develop, and to evolve your business in the way that needs to be evolved in the next 10 years… you’re going to be slowly falling apart instead.

If you leave a car out in the middle of the desert, what’s gonna happen to it? it’s gonna fall apart. It’s gonna rust it’s no longer gonna work unless you are taking care of the things that matter – they will fall apart over time. You may have a level of success right now that you’re happy with, but even in order to maintain that you need to consistently be growing the things that will allow it to maintain itself.

Ignoring it – just getting caught up in the day-to-day activities will actually enable it to slowly fall apart.

If you’re not sure exactly how to uplevel your mindset –

If you know that it’s a good idea, you see all of the Instagram posts, you hear the quotes and they all make sense, but wonder “how do you actually do it?”

I have a free training called Bottlenecks to Breakthroughs that will help you out. It’ll show you the only 5 areas that you must be addressing and it includes exercises to get you started.

You can learn more about that here or grab it by clicking the button below.

What about you, boss, lady?

What advice do you wish you’d gotten as a new entrepreneur?

Scroll down to leave your comments!

xoTara-teal

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