We’ve started a new video series with I Am a Mom & Pop where we focus more on the “heart” of stories. We originally started BB to get stories from entrepreneurs on how they started and what they’ve learned but now we are sharing the true struggles of what it’s like running a business and how it can affect your everyday life too. There are so many small and family businesses that have so much knowledge to share and we wanted to share our stories first to kick off the new series.
I know, I know…I haven’t updated this in a while. For one, I’ve been busy and two, I’ve lacked inspiration…
About 8 months ago I was struggling with being uninspired and honestly I was exhausted. It seems like everywhere you turn, you have to update this, instagram that, tweet somebody before you miss that small window etc. I was becoming burn out and felt like at one point that was all I was doing ALL day.
Struggling with this was one thing but then an unexpected curve ball took the wind out of my sails about 6 1/2 months ago, my middle sister was killed in an motorcycle accident. That was enough to make me want to curl up in a ball and separate myself from everything. Which is what I did for a month or two. In that moment, you don’t feel like anything matters and stumble wondering why we actually do what we do each day. Is it to have the things we have? Be on top? Finally have that dream house we’ve always wanted? None of that really ever mattered to me but it really didn’t matter after having to swallow losing my sister.
That in itself is a whole other story that I will share very soon, so stay tuned…
At some point in business you’re always going to have a burn out moment, it’s just inevitable. Anyone who disagrees with that is just lying to themselves otherwise. When we originally started Business Beware it was to help fellow business owners and share stories with others to inspire those wanting to start a business of their own. The show has been a great way for us to share the stories across the boards and we even have a ton of people contact us to share their story with us. For a show, that’s exactly what you want but the problem is that so many of these people were only wanting to share something to say, “What’s in it for me?” I actually recall one person I contacted about doing an interview with (who originally reached out to us) asked about all the outlets we were in, where it was aired, how many viewers etc. That was fine but I told them they were missing the point of what our show was all about – sharing stories to educate and inspire others, not about getting something in return for sharing your story. As a side note, they were also a startup business who thought they deserved the royal red carpet rolled out for them. I told them they were in for a rude awakening if they thought that everything just goes according to plan and people come busting down your door to talk to you.
Now granted, I had just lost my sister and I was in a fog as it was but I was blown away by how selfish some people were. I’m on the phone thinking, “To be honest with you, I don’t care because there are more important things in life than being worried about how many twitter followers you have. Oh by the way, my sister just died…” It’s not like I could just bust out and say that but there were many times I wanted to just to make someone take a step back for a moment.
I remember talking to a friend one day and they asked how everything was going and I just replied with, “I’m burned out and at this moment could throw everything out of the window.” They said to me, “Why? Everything you do helps others around you and I even get something from the stories I read on I Am A Mom and Pop AND I’m not even a business owner.”
I don’t know why but for some reason that’s exactly what I needed to hear. We go about our day, doing what we do and sometimes we think to ourselves, “Does anything that I do matter?”
Yes, it does.
I was struggling with trying to balance and keep up with everything that I forgot to focus on the root of what I do. I think many of us lose sight of why we started something because of all the static going on around us from having to keep up with social media, experts telling you this and trying to get ahead of the person next to you. Here’s what I can tell you:
- You don’t need to constantly update your social media accounts like everyone tells you to.
- Don’t settle for something less than what your ultimate mission is just to get ahead.
- It’s okay not to answer an email within 10 minutes of when you received it, it’s not going anywhere.
- It doesn’t matter how many followers you have because anyone can buy them these days (your mouth just dropped didn’t it?).
- Before you assume that someone is ignoring your emails, calls etc. just consider that something else might be going on in their life you have no clue about. – Be cool.
I could honestly sit here and list a lot more but I’ll spare you on that. You might be thinking about walking completely away from what you do and you’re already over it all. That’s okay.
Here’s my thought on that – Isn’t it better to walk away from everything and everyone than ultimately losing who you really are?
That’s my advice on that so take it and figure it out but make sure it makes you ultimately happy. Am I going to walk away from all of what I do? No. But now I’ve refocused myself and know what I need to accomplish and what I need to let go of. Sometimes things in life happen to make you remember what’s truly important. I firmly believe that everything happens for a reason. Whether you agree or disagree with me, figure it out and make sure you’re truly happy with whatever it is you do.
We share the politicians views on small business and why it’s about time they start listening to us. Thought about using Instagram for your business? Check out our thoughts on doing just that and some great examples we’ve found. Also, what should you expect when you make the transition in adding a family member to your new business.
As a small business owner you pay the price with a lot of things. And many times people don’t see what all you do behind the scenes, they only “see” the perks you get or the time you can take off because you own the business.
I know that I am more sensitive to this subject because I have been involved with the family business atmosphere for quite a few years now but it still gets under my skin every time. I can’t stand when employees take for granted how well they are treated, the days they get paid for vacation even when no where does it say that they HAVE to get paid or when they smile at you and then complain to other employees. It’s just not cool.
As a small family business you have more bills than actual money that you bring in. Everything from insurance, loans, rent, employee expenses, gas, licensing and the list goes on. Many employees don’t understand what it takes and that’s why they always stay an employee and there’s nothing wrong with that. But as employee you should realize that next time you want to complain that you didn’t get to take off or get a “paid holiday” I would like you to step into the business owners shoes for a day….I 100% guarantee you would change your attitude. They can let you go and get someone in there just as good or if not better than you too.
Think before you act.
Joy and Southern Comfort,
P.S. Check out My Biggest Start-up Challenge