Six Great Life Lessons Learned Through Self-Employment
written by: akua hinds
march 30, 2020
There are so many lessons to learn each day, and I have found that self-employment has taught me more than I ever thought possible. Being self-employed means that you are pursuing a leadership position in your life. Working for an employer is perfectly fine for many people, but for others, working as an employee is not the path they want to pursue. It takes a person with a certain type of tenacity and vision to pursue entrepreneurship. People who are in complete control of their work schedules see the world in different ways. Here are six great life lessons that you learn through being your own boss:
1. Creating an Action Plan is Important. It can be so easy and tempting to live each day just like the previous one. Slipping into a routine can feel comfortable, even if that routine is not a particularly healthy one. Entrepreneurs do not have the luxury of being able to just coast on the job or treat their businesses casually if they expect to see consistent profits. Entrepreneurs do not have unions protecting them. An entrepreneur must be self-disciplined and chart his or her own path because they simply have to set certain examples and create a certain momentum in order to attract and keep a customer base. Every successful company becomes successful because the leaders created a formula for success and they enforced the formula. A leader of a small business needs to do the same.
2. Small steps lead to larger successes. Every journey begins with small steps, and building a business begins one step at a time. Through my work, I have seen how important it is to learn from each step and to treasure each lesson being learned. You may not see how certain steps that you need to go through in building your business will be beneficial to you later on in life, but those small steps towards success are all leading you towards other situations that you will face in life and in business.
3. You Really Can Have It All. I think a lot of people talk themselves out of pursuing entrepreneurship because they are sceptical and don’t believe that they really can make it on their own. It can be very challenging to change your mentality from that of being an employee to being an employer. Even now, after years of working as an independent contractor, I still struggle at times with being motivated to make decisions for my business. However, I realize that it is important to be proactive in all areas of life if we want to see success.
4. One Size Does Not Fit All. It is true that you really can have it all with regards to being an entrepreneur, however, one person’s path to entrepreneurship will not necessarily look the same for you if you decide to become your own boss. You can build a business in many different ways; some ways will include working alongside other people, or, you could run your business completely solo. The choice is up to you. While it is good to learn from other business owners, you will be responsible for charting your own course and forging your own path. Your success might look different than another person’s success, and that is fine. Just do what you feel you need to do to achieve your goals.
5. The Work is Worth It. Last year during the month of February, I was able to visit my family in Barbados and I am so glad that I went! I booked my flight two weeks before I traveled, and I did not need to ask anyone for permission to take time off from work. I was able to go to the Caribbean to see my relatives and the money I make mainly through my voice acting business and my online dating website businesses paid for the entire week that I spent abroad. The money I earn from my other businesses were helpful too, but the voice acting and online dating sites paid for the majority of my trip. Even though I had already visited Barbados in September, 6 months prior to that February trip, I was able to visit my relatives in Barbados again and book those travel plans quickly without any major planning or preparation. I had simply let the people I work with as an independent contractor know that I would be out of town and that I would continue working with them after I returned from my vacation. I truly treasure having the flexibility and choices that entrpreneurship provides.
6. There is Always More to Learn. This is the part of entrepreneurship that I absolutely love; there is something to learn through business each and every day. And I often find that the lessons I learn through my business are lessons that I apply to other areas of my life. There is a lot of learning that I still need to do. Instead of allowing that to overwhelm me, I am going to embrace it all. Learning means that there is something to look forward to, and that is a wonderful feeling. Embracing the unknown can feel so freeing.