When I first got started online way back in 2006, it was a hobby for me. I was helping my mom to downsize by selling used goods on eBay.
Gosh, I learned so much from those early days of doing business online, even if it was a hobby, it was valuable information that sticks with me all these years later.
So as I sit here reflecting and setting new goals for my online business I thought I would share with you 5 lessons I’ve learned along the way, for new entrepreneurs.
1. Seriously. Take your business seriously. My business coach from back in my eBay days, Lisa Suttora says “Treat your business like a business and it will pay you like a business, treat your business like a hobby and it will cost you like a hobby.” Words I have been living by.
2. Planning. I used to think I could just “wing it” and plan as I go but by following this strategy I never knew where I was going nor did I know what was working or not working. I’ve learned you need a plan to know where you’re going and how you’ll get there, you need a road map and setting goals will help you do this.
3. Location, Location, Location. My office space used to be in a creamed bedroom with a tiny desk where I never had room to work. I hated it there and never liked working in that space. Now I’ve moved my office to the biggest spare bedroom in our home and have made it my space, it is off limits to everyone else in the house. I love it; I painted and decorated it to my liking with a big beautiful L shaped desk given to me by my wonderful sister. If you work from home I highly recommend you find your own space to work in, with your own computer, desk and supplies. I love my new office!
4. Take Care of Yourself. I’ve been stressed at times, learning new things, that I’d let the frustration of not understanding something get the best of me. I wasn’t always the nicest person to be around. But I’ve since learned to recognize when I’m stressed and to walk away when I’m not getting it. I now do meditation and have recently started yoga. I feel so much better these days and I now ask for help. I’ve met so many wonderful people online who will help and have been such an inspiration for me that things don’t seem as bad anymore, even when I can’t figure out how to get my report transferred to the right folder in my hosting account.
5. Never Stop Learning. Just like in nursing, you’re learning new things every day, it’s the same in your online business. It is a steep learning curve at the beginning but it does get better. It feels great when you get those “ah hah” monuments, everything you’ve been learning is now coming together. Online business changes constantly so never stop learning! Stay up to date on what’s new in your industry and what you’re clients want and need. If you don’t you’re competition will, and you don’t want that right?
So to recap- never stop learning and learn all you can but make sure you implement what you learn. It won’t help if all that knowledge just sits on you desktop or in your brain and never gets used, what a waste! Take care of yourself and recognize those symptoms of stress, it will kill you. Get help and don’t be afraid to ask for it, and create your own inner circle of go to people who are willing and able to help you. Find your own space, plan ahead and take that business seriously! You’ll grow your online business into the business and life you love!