Many people dream about independence. About life without a nagging boss. About living on their own terms. What many of them don’t know is that this dream is much closer than they realize.
A very good friend of mine has had a business plan for a long time, and not only that, but he also has potential customers willing to pay him. They can hardly wait for him to start offering his services. Despite this, he is still hesitant to start his own business. He always finds an excuse to not start working on his business at any given moment. First the excuse was school. Then he wasn’t sure how he should present his services. Then it was about life abroad. Then a breakup. And then it was school again.
But one thing is certain: A perfect opportunity never comes. One will never say that now is the perfect opportunity to start doing something new. There is always a reason for procrastinating and putting your dreams off.
The important thing is to start. Even when you don’t feel ready. Even when you think that you should wait. Maybe you attend school and you’re busy, but when you finish school, you’ll have a job. And you’ll be busy again. Once again, there is always a reason for procrastination.
Start. Right now. Every busy person, even the busiest one is able to find 2-4 hours a week to work on his/her business or dream. How to begin? My article about setting goals will surely help you – if you haven’t read it yet, make sure to read it.
How not to be be afraid of a big project
Yes, big projects are scary. And starting a business is surely a big project. Maybe the biggest one you’ve ever undertaken. So what should you do, to avoid going crazy and to stop putting work off till tomorrow?
1. Break down a large project into smaller steps
- Grab a piece of paper and a pen
- Write your goal on the top – for instance ‘creating a website for your new business’’
- Below that, start writing the tasks you need to do in order to accomplish your goal. In the example above of creating a website, you have to research how to buy a domain, what hosting service you will need, whether you need someone to help you in creating the website, etc.
The point is to divide that big, scary project into smaller tasks so you’ll be able to progress easily and check them off your list. As you start to check these small tasks off, your ego will be boosted and your motivation will increase. Suddenly the project won’t be as challenging as it had originally seemed to be. You are slowly moving forward. And you see it in black and white.
2. Block out time for working on your project
One day a week, have a 2-hour window set aside in which you’ll work on the project. And do so every week. You’ll notice that a month from now, you’ll have a lot of the work done, your motivation will have increased and in fact you actually work on your dream more than 2 hours a week. The important thing is to start. In a month you’ll create a habit that will be hard to break.
If you have a problem remembering that you should be working on your project regularly, set an alarm clock or a reminder on your phone. You surely won’t forget it this way.
3. Don’t expect to succeed on the first try
Plenty of people procrastinate, because they aren’t sure of something. They don’t know how they should present their services. They aren’t sure what to start with. But because of this uncertainty they do nothing. It’s called analysis paralysis.
Realize that it is better to decide and start, than hesitate to decide and do nothing. You’ll never be certain of anything. And when you choose a path, you can calmly change it later. A business is not like school where you have to decide in advance what you want to study for the next 3 or 4 years of your life. And believe me when I say that good entrepreneurs change and modify their plans. They adjust a plan to the market conditions, according to their new experience and to customer feedback.
Back to our example of creating a website, realize that even if you create it, you’ll still change and adjust it many times. That’s why it doesn’t matter that much what structure you choose or how you choose to promote your services. You’ll also change the prices later. Everybody does that and it’s completely normal. Realize it now and you’ll worry less.
4. Stop telling yourself that you are busy with something else
Once again, don’t tell me you’re busy. Everybody is. But even despite that, some of us still manage to create new things, while others are “busy” on Facebook or watching television.
I constantly hear people around me complaining about how they hate their jobs, because of an idiot boss or because they don’t get along with their co-workers. And this is often the main reason why they leave their jobs and instead rather go to the unemployment office. It’s sad but that is how it is – and not only in Slovakia.
Is this how you want to end up? Do you want to be employed? Do you want to hear your boss complaining every day? Do you want to make money someone else money? Or do you want to have the freedom to work on your own? Make money for yourself. Be your own boss. I chose the second thing and I really can’t even imagine being employed somewhere now, being in the office early at 8:00 and sitting there everyday listening to other’s dumb orders.
Choose your priorities. And follow them. Once you start, nothing will stop you.
Lubo Jurik, October the 22th, 2014, Yao Yai Island,Thailand
Do you need help?
If you still have questions and you need some help with starting your online project, write me an email, or check the services I offer on Evolution Startup. I have been helping entrepreneurs get started for many years. Maybe we’ll create something awesome together. Do you want that?