Are you taking your first steps in your online business journey?
Perhaps you’re teetering on the brink of this big adventure or maybe you’ve already taken a few steps into entrepreneur land.
Whichever stage you’re at, the important, most vital idea to bear in mind as a woman in your 40s, 50s and beyond, is that you’ve already made many journeys into the unknown before in your life.
Maybe you’ve been to college, started a job, got married, had children, ended a relationship, started again. All of these, is just one in a series of adventures that begins with our exploration of a new world when we are very young and ends with our final journey into the great unknown.
"You are already a master traveler. You've developed expertise in taking journeys through your experience built up over a life time."
So no matter what your level of comfort in starting a business, remember you are already a master traveler. You’ve developed expertise in taking journeys through your experience built up over a life time.
Because no matter what your personal journey combination, each of these expeditions has experiences in common, there are underlying patterns in all journeys that can help you in this new one of building a successful business.
The pattern of journeys
We all know that a journey starts with a single step but there are other similarities they often share.
They begin with a decision or commitment or if, as in the case of a journey that is thrust upon us, an acceptance that this is a journey we must take. Until this happens, we are simply hovering on the edge.
We have a destination of some form in mind although life experience shows us that sometimes this will change along the way.
If this is a journey we have chosen for ourselves we experience an exciting alchemy of anticipation, excitement, nervousness with perhaps a tinge of self doubt and our energy builds as we take our first moves forward into this new journey.
Later, we may be faced with obstacles, with challenges, our energy and self confidence may drop, we may have triumphs along the way, we learn to adjust and keep going until we gain confidence as we near our destination.
Eventually this particular journey ends and we realise that in some way we have changed. We can look back down the path we have traveled with a new perspective knowing that we are a different person from the one who started. Older certainly, and hopefully wiser and more self aware.
And then life moves us onwards once more.
Tools for the journey
On a journey over unfamiliar terrain, we take tools to keep us on track and to prevent us getting lost. A map, a compass, a guidebook all can help us navigate our way, highlight attractions along the way and pitfalls to avoid.
By all means use guides to show you the way, entrepreneurs who have built a successful business and experts who can help you at different stages of this journey. But don't underestimate the value of what you already bring with you.
As a master traveler, you know there will be times when everything flows, when you’re running down the road towards your goals and your feel as if you’re flying. At other times, it will feel as if you’re climbing an impossible hill but your experience of previous journeys will keep you going and in particular these mindset tools will support you along the way.
You know that any problem, any difficulty or area of uncertainly will pass.
A strong, clear view of where you want to go that will keep you going through any setbacks
Curiosity to learn and develop
Courage when it if feels as if you’ve lost your way and you doubt your ability to keep going
The ability to adapt if a different route needs to be taken
Tenacity to overcome obstacles and the absolute faith that any problem or setback is only a temporary blip, that there is always a way to solve a problem
Pitfalls to avoid on this journey
Perfectionism – thinking you have to have every aspect and detail of the journey perfected and planned before you even start
Procrastination - Waiting for the correct configuration of the stars / the perfect experience or qualifications / or your family circumstances to be exactly how you would wish before you start the journey and take your first steps
Trying to take too many shiny objects with you and suffering from content overload and major overwhelm
Convincing yourself that others have already made this particular journey with more panache and success than you could ever muster
Fear of all possible calamities that might possibly, at some point, hit you along the way. Fear of failing, publicly humiliating yourself, fear of getting lost or even of succeeding.
The truth is that we can flounder into any one of these pitfalls at any time. But especially when we're starting off as an entrepreneur, there is no momentum to help us navigate our way through. So we can get lost and circle round for an eternity. The best way to deal with them is just to get started and travel light. Let go of your mental baggage, throw away your long lists of tasks you feel you have to complete before you start and just get going.
Your business journey
Starting as an entrepreneur in your mid-years is for you, one journey of many. And maybe you fear that the territory is unfamiliar, that younger explorers are more confident of their way but I’m here to tell you that you already possess many valuable skills. It’s a question of bringing all of that forward in your suitcase of magnificence and reflecting a little before you start.
What lessons, skills and experiences are you bringing with you from previous journeys?
Which mindset tools do you already have? Which could do with strengthening?
Which particular pitfalls are you likely to fall into and what can you do to minimise their impact?
If you’d like to discover more about starting your business journey and you know you want to do more with your midlife (and beyond) even if at the moment you haven’t the foggiest what that might look like, get on a free Flourish call with me.
Together we’ll explore what your version of a great midlife looks like and we’ll get you moving forward.
My guarantee: You will make progress during our conversation.
We'll also talk about whether 1:1 coaching with me is the right next step for you. For details of my current coaching package there is more info here.
I look forward to talking to you.