We're with you in this: starting a business can be both exciting and terrifying. On the one hand, it can give you financial freedom and be a fulfilling source of livelihood. On the other, there's the pressure to succeed, especially if you're doing it in exchange for a secure job and a steady paycheck.
So, yes, of course, it's scary. All big decisions usually are. You just have to find the courage to take the first step and anticipate every possible hurdle so that you can prepare yourself for them.
With that said, let's talk about some of the most common fears of starting a business, and ways to overcome each of them.
Fear #1: Not knowing what lies ahead
This is probably the most crippling source of anxiety for soon-to-be entrepreneurs. If you're just starting out, chances are that you’ll be working with a blank slate. You don't know exactly what to prepare for, how people might respond to your big idea, and just how much of your resources you'll be expanding in your bid to build a business from the ground up.
But remember, short of consulting a seer, there really is no way of knowing the future with certainty.
You simply have to wholeheartedly commit to your idea and do your research ahead of time. Read up as much as you can about the industry, ask fellow entrepreneurs, and familiarize yourself with the process of starting the business. The more you know, the less daunting it will all become.
Fear #2: Losing a steady paycheck
Let's be real: we all need money to survive. Naturally, you want to make sure that your business venture will not eat into the budget that feeds and clothes you.
One way of mitigating the risk of using up all of your savings is by slowly easing into your new role as a business owner. You can do this by working part-time on your business while still working on your regular job.
Use your weekends and free time to develop your business plan and test out your products/services. This way, you can try your hand at managing your business without committing to it full-time yet. As your brand builds traction and attracts more clients, you can eventually transition to becoming a full-time entrepreneur.
Fear #3: Being too overwhelmed with your to-dos
If there's one thing that we know for certain, it's that starting a business takes a lot of work. Between polishing your business plan and filing for the right paperwork, there's an inordinate number of details that you need to worry about.
So, how do you even start to chip away at your to-do list?
Well, it starts by setting goals and splitting them into smaller and more manageable tasks. As much as you might want to hit the ground running by doing large chunks of work at a time, this can result in early burnout and a feeling of being overwhelmed. To make this less intimidating, start small and be consistent in putting in the hours.
And don't forget to delegate too. You don't have to do everything alone. If you need help in building your website, for example, you don't have to do the work by yourself. We here at Bloom iDesign can help you create and launch a website to get the word out about your business as soon as possible.
Fear #4: Not finding the right support system
We know that when you're starting out, it can be hard to find the right support system. Sure, you might be able to make headway through grit alone, but without the support from a community to help you out of tight spots, your business will stall.
Luckily, you don't have to look far. Social media has helped entrepreneurs find communities of like-minded individuals who are more than willing to lend a hand or give some tips on how they were able to do it themselves.
And if this still doesn’t work and you can’t find a community, then build one. Reach out to investors and even your customers and build each other up. Share what you’re most passionate about regarding your business and listen to their stories as well.
Fear #5: Not being able to cope with the pressure of success
Now let's take a look at the other end of the spectrum: what if you succeed?
A lot of new entrepreneurs will have thought of every possible scenario of how their business might fail, but are you really prepared for when it takes off and you get overwhelmed with its success? And if you have, does this scare you as well?
Some of you might hold back from starting a business because you fear that you're going to start something that could be bigger than what you're capable of. But this is when proper planning and scaling your business accordingly makes all the difference. If you find yourself becoming an overnight success, then you simply have to adjust. Hire new people, consider taking on a managing partner, and outsource some of the work that needs to be done. All of these can help your day-to-day life be more manageable while you take a step back and finally enjoy all of your hard-earned success.