The first week that I went full time with my business was a scary week. Actually, it was a terrifying week.
My expectation was that as soon as the week started, I would make money. Instead, I ended the week with -2,000 dollars. That's right--that's a negative sign in front of that 2,000.
I found that whenever people get scared, they revert to back to bad habits and wrong ways of thinking. Everything becomes twisted and distorted, and they can't tell reality from fiction any more. The whole experience can be jarring.
This is what happened to me. I went into a swirl of "I'm not going to make money" or "I'm going to have to beg to get my job back."
But guess what? That was all fiction. None of that happened.
Fears are real, but they're also liars.
If we call them out, we can push past them--plugging our ears from their noisy lies and getting back to the truth again.
If the fears seem overwhelming--like they're stopping you from moving forward with your business--here are some ways I've learned to fight back against them.
1. Imagine yourself in a burning room.
Here's something crucial I learned in my early days of entrepreneurship:
Business is only as hard as you make it.
I say this a lot, but at the end of the day, all business is simply selling something to someone--meaning, all you need is something to sell and someone to sell to in order to have a business. Be careful not to complicate business too much beyond that.
I've seen way too many aspiring entrepreneurs never start because they place layer after layer of excuses in front of them. For instance, they need the best website ever in order to start, or they need to write up a 100-page business plan.
Truth is, these unnecessary complications are really the byproduct of our fears.
We complicate our way forward when we get scared. This is how fear lies to us. It makes us think that the way forward is a lot harder than it is, when it's not.
So for entrepreneurs just starting, I tell them to imagine that they're in a burning room.
No one who is in a burning room will sit there and plot a way out. They'll run. They'll take action to find the exit as quick as possible.
If you are not taking action on your passion, imagine yourself in a burning room, where your true desire is being suffocated. You need freedom. You need to get out. Once you put yourself in that situation, there's no more room for complication. There's just you and the exit. How will you get there fast?
2. Exhaust your resources.
It's easy for entrepreneurs to think that no one understands them. This again is a lie.
Never isolate yourself when you're pursuing your passion. Doing so will make the path forward a lot harder.
Instead, reach out to your network and ask for help or advice.
I know most people who set out to follow their passion want to be able to say that they made their dream possible all by themselves, but this is typically not how it happens. People who are successful know how to gather and keep support.
After my first week being full-time with my business, I reached out to my network, and I was honest. I told them that I feared not making money. And guess what? They supported me. They encouraged me until I got that first sale. They gave me action steps that allowed me to stop overcomplicating things, and start making sales.
When you hear the lying voice of your fears, reach out and exhaust all of your resources. Don't let your fear further isolate you. Instead, ask for help.
3. Don't buy into qualifications.
You know what will further exacerbate your fears? Believing you're not good enough.
The one thing I hate about most of the videos on entrepreneurship that circle around social media is that they seem to place qualifications on what it takes to be an entrepreneur. You know what I'm talking about if you've ever stumbled upon a video of a man yelling at you to hustle.
You see, we've been led to believe that we need hustle, grit, and stamina in order to be an entrepreneur. We've been led to believe that we need to be the offensive, go-getter, stop-at-nothing sort of person in order to succeed.
But truth is, there are no qualifications to being an entrepreneur. You learn hustle, grit, stamina, or whatever as you go along.
All this to say: you have everything you need to start as an entrepreneur. Don't buy into believing that you need to be someone else in order to be an entrepreneur. This will only exacerbate your fears.
So next time you see another entrepreneurship video telling you to hustle and be better, realize that you already have the qualities to get started as an entrepreneur. The only question is if you'll start.
Fear is a tricky foe to tackle as an entrepreneur. The simplest of things can trigger fear at any moment.
But if you believe the lies that fear tells, then you make you and your business a victim to it.
As hard as this is, learn to build your armor against fear. Get comfortable with its unnerving presence. And most importantly, learn to keep moving when fear sounds the alarm.
This is quite possibly one of the hardest things to do as an entrepreneur. But once you get the hang of it, you'll be fine. Believe that, and keep moving forward.
And if you need an audience to sell to so that you can get started with your business without fear, I recommend you join my upcoming webinar.
It's the perfect kick-in-the-butt action you need to get started and move past fear.
CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP FOR THE FREE WEBINAR
Hope to see you inside. And P.S. it's okay to bring your fear with you to the webinar. My hope is that it'll get bored and decide to leave by the time we're done together.
This article was originally published on EssentialHustle.com.