Today marks my one-month anniversary of being my own boss and getting my Virtual Assistant business off the ground. I have been blown away by the support I’ve had from friends, family and former colleagues. I cannot thank them enough for encouraging me to keep going and believe that I will succeed.
I’m fortunate to have signed my first few clients, all of whom are a dream to work with. However, for so many positives there are, of course, some aspects which have been tougher to manage. So, I continue to travel a steep learning curve on my journey as a business owner.
Here are my five key takeaways from month one:
1. The support of family and friends is invaluable
Whether it’s liking and sharing my posts, passing my contact details on to anyone who may be remotely interested in my services, helping with childcare or just lending an ear, having a solid support network is absolutely vital. You all know who you are so THANK YOU!
2. It is VERY easy to become overwhelmed by social media
I am very much an all-in type of person so I have thrown myself into the VA and business owner world which is all very exciting. It is also terrifying. And hard to keep up with. If you are unable to spend all day, every day, online it’s easy to fall into the FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) trap and then when you DO manage to keep on top of it all, Imposter Syndrome is ready and waiting to freak you out and pop demons onto your shoulders telling you everyone is doing things better than you are. I, therefore, try to ensure I carve out dedicated time to catch up on social media, utilise scheduling tools wherever possible and remind myself I have every right to be here.
3. Pushing myself out of my comfort zone is required on a daily basis
As an introvert, being the face and voice of my business was an uncomfortable prospect but crucial to master if I am to have success at any level. Of course, like all things that initially terrify us, once you actually DO them, they’re not so bad and can even be enjoyable. I feel as though I’ve started to find my voice on social media and every response I receive to a post encourages me to keep going and believe in myself. The idea of conducting meetings with prospective clients by phone or video initially filled me with dread but now I’ve started doing them on a regular basis I really don’t know why I was creating extra stress for myself by worrying about them.
4. It’s impossible to learn everything at once
I LOVE to learn. It’s one of the reasons I undertook a degree alongside my full-time job a few years ago and why I’ve already enrolled in my fourth course this year alone. I’m a strong believer that self-education is the only way we grow and achieve things way outside our comfort zone, but I’ve had to cut myself some slack and accept that I can’t learn all aspects of a running a business inside-out in a matter of weeks.
Much as I want to be clued-up on every piece of software out there, master Google Analytics and become an SEO whizz, it’s simply not possible and my time is better spent focusing on ONE area and getting that right. So, I’ve limited the number of webinars I sign up for, cut down the hours I spend reading ‘how to’ articles and blogs and devised a plan for working through my ambitious list one step at a time. I’ve also promised myself I won’t purchase one more business book until I’ve read the ever-increasing pile accumulating beside my bed.
5. Self-care is critical
This one has taken me far too long to fully understand but is something I am working on and try to factor into my working week wherever possible. With a young family, a growing business and multiple other commitments on my calendar, it is easy to put myself at the bottom of the list. However, I am also the glue holding everything together and if I fall apart, so do all these things around me! Therefore, in the last few months, I’ve taken up running again, been horseriding several times and spent time creating magical memories with my children on some fantastic days out. Definitely work in progress but it feels good to be on the right track.
All in all, I am happy to report that month one has been a success and I’ve already learnt so much. I’ve been incredibly fortunate to make some fantastic new connections, meet some amazing people and, of course, work with some lovely clients so onwards and upwards to month two!
If you’re interested in working with me, please contact me for further information or schedule a free consultation.