First things first, congrats lady! You did the thing! You quit your job to start your own business! Pop some champagne and toast to yourself because, you my friend, are incredible!
Now, if you found yourself here, I’m guessing that the high of walking away from your corporate job and launching your business is starting to wear off a little. You’re feeling a bit alone and possibly going kinda stir crazy in your apartment.
How did I read your mind?
I’ve been there.
It’s easy to get a bit down when all of a sudden the not so fun parts of running a solo business (taxes, being alone all of the time, no more free snacks, etc.) start to feel all consuming.
Your friends may look at you like you’re killing it because you did the big scary thing (which you are by the way!), but at times you might feel like you’re the furthest from “killing it” you’ve ever been. As a result, it’s easy to get stuck thinking about how far you still have to go to make this the true business of your dreams, rather than recognizing how far you’ve come.
Unfortunately, spiraling into self-doubt can have real consequences on you and your business. It can do a number on your creativity, your efficiency and your overall ability to visualize a positive future, which any coach will tell you is important for success.
But don’t worry, my friend! There are some pretty simple (and highly effective) things you can do to get out of your slump and stay sane so that you and your business crush it!
Find a community
Now if all of your friend still work a typical 9-5 job, it’s easy feel like your daily work experiences have nothing in common anymore. While you’re super excited about having started your business, it can be extremely isolating and frustrating when no one around you totally understands your experience.
The best way to fix this? Find a community that does!
Not sure where to start? Look up some local MeetUp or networking groups for female entrepreneurs. Check out some of their events and see who you meet.
Yes, it takes getting out of your newly minted work wardrobe of yoga pants and a messy bun, but the emotional support you’ll gain from befriending even one other female entrepreneur will be 100% worth it.
And trust me, there are plenty of other women just like you who are craving that sense of community too. Go find each other and become business besties. Even if they aren’t in the same industry or line of work, having someone to swap war stories with or bounce ideas off of will make you feel much less isolated and oh so supported.
Remember, the community you build can be both local and virtual. For example, I’ve made some great female entrepreneur friends here in the Boston area, while also relying on support from online networks like Biz & Bubbly. The great news is that there are lots of Facebook and other online communities bringing amazing people together these days. That means, with just a little bit of searching, you can find the support you need.
Get out into the world
Whether that means going for a walk around your neighborhood, working a few hours a week from a local coffee shop, or joining a coworking space, get out of your home office or off your couch and be among people!
You don’t necessarily need to interact with anyone, but just being physically around people and seeing that other people do in fact exist outside of your apartment can get you out of your head.
I find that when I’m feeling stuck or alone, all it takes for a quick attitude adjustment is walking down the street to my favorite coffee shop and planting myself at a table near other laptop warriors. I have no idea who they are and often we don’t say a word to each other, but just having some proximity to other people goes a long way.
Bonus: You never know what sources of inspiration might come your way or who you might meet during your adventure into the world!
Just the other day, I was at a coffee shop and the guy next to me overheard me talking about wanting to bring some local female entrepreneurs together. He stopped me on my way out, introduced himself and asked for my card so he could connect me to his friend who is looking to do the same thing. It was like a two-for-one special! Getting out into the world AND building my community? Yes please!
Move your body
When doing something you love and trying to get a business off the ground, you can easily look up and realize that you’ve been sitting in the same spot for 4 hours straight. Not good…
Unlike being in an office with coworkers who are constantly coming by to chat or going to grab coffee to get away from their desks, working alone at home has fewer distractions to get you out of your seat. Yes, there are of course the obvious online distractions like Facebook or cute puppy videos on YouTube, but most of those just keep you glued to your computer screen.
Yet, your body needs to move in order to stay healthy and promote your creativity. So get movin’, lady!
Schedule some time throughout the day to get your body going. The great news about running your own business is that you get to create your own schedule.
So if you want to go to a 2pm spin class, you can do that! Or simply go on a walk with an inspiring podcast (a personal favorite of mine as it gets my body moving, plus I get some awesome ideas – win win). Or you could even just do 10 sun salutations in your living room to break up parts of a project.
Experiment and figure out what works best for you. Your body will know when you’ve found the right thing.
Being a solopreneur is amazing, but it’s not always easy and sometimes you need a little help. Use these 3 strategies to find the right people and routines to support you on this awesome journey! They’ll save you from going a bit nutty after being cooped up alone in your apartment all day. Trust me! You’ve got this!
Have any additional strategies that keep you sane as a solopreneur? I’d love to hear about them in the comments below!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Carolyn Birsky, Compass Maven
Carolyn is a Certified Life & Career Coach based in Cambridge, MA. Through her business, Compass Maven, Carolyn helps ambitious women in their 20s gain clarity and confidence so they can get unstuck and turn the lives and careers of their dreams into reality. A born connector, Carolyn loves finding opportunities to introduce amazing women to one another and watch the incredible things that arise from these relationships. When she’s not coaching or working on her business, you can find Carolyn traveling, discovering new coffee shops and restaurants, and making the most of her time with friends and family.
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