I once had a dear friend who had a clothing line idea. I thought it was great because the particular market segment she was looking to serve was under-served. She had some clothes made and then a photoshoot. The idea was to create a social media page to advertise. This she did.
After a couple of days of loading the items to her new page, I asked her how things were going. Her response was, people are liking the pictures but no orders are coming through. I told her it would take time and work and that she should keep pushing.
Well, long story short she gave up within a few months. Probably because things were not going as she thought it would. Let’s just say that for now, her beautiful dream is on hold.
Personally, the urge to quit with the launch of each new event/program is almost always assured. Last month for instance, while I was still marketing the Women Leaders Workshop I got to that point. At that point, I was thinking ‘who kroaa has asked me to organize this event. It is too hard’ At that point, I shed a few awam tears to pacify myself right before I kept pushing. At the end of the 2-day event, I was like ‘I am so happy I didn’t give up’. I felt the impact, especially when the participants kept writing to thank me.
Similarly, 2 weeks to our last event, I totally wanted to give up. I rationalized that the timing was super poor and I had too much going on at the moment. While I was at that point, I said to myself ‘2 weeks from now you will feel very different. You will be so happy you didn’t give up’. With that, I kept pushing. And yes, last weekend after the event was over, I was dancing to God’s glory.
You see, after over 6 years of organising events I am applying the knowledge gained from the experiences. That is wisdom; knowing from doing and applying the learnings. In my line of work, I have come across new women in business who want to give up when the going gets tough too. I get them, I have been there several times. BUT thank God, I usually keep pushing anyway.
In today’s blog post, I want to share 5 things I do to help me not give up on my dreams.
Put your why front and center
When gurus say we should know our why, they are not kidding. A strong why is what will keep you going when you get to that point. For most new women in business I know, their why is not just to make money. The extra income takes care of children, aging parents, help the poor, etc. Many of us are very passionate about social issues which go beyond just our families. And so with this strong why in mind, you will be motivated to keep going.
Learn from others
One of the best things I did for my business – without even knowing – was to share stories about women. Just in case you are new here, The Fabulous Woman Network started with us sharing stories about women on Facebook. We had no idea that it would become a business.
In the beginning of course, we had nothing to sell and so our problems were few haha. It was when we started monetising that we began to see reality. Oh those loooong days of sales calls with the back aches! Interestingly, whenever I felt lonely and miserable because things were not going right, I would remember the stories. You see, by this time I had interviewed so many women entrepreneurs who had shared their struggles. Remembering their struggles and where they are now gave me so much hope.
Another way of learning for me has been reading books by other entrepreneurs. These are a few of my recent reads which have kept me going:
Fact: there is nothing new under the sun. Chances are others have already been where you are, so learn from their stories. By the way, there is a special palace in heaven for people who share their authentic stories OK?
Be accountable to someone who gets it
Coaches, Accountability Partners, Mastermind groups, etc are very helpful people to lament to. Because they have either been where you are or are on a similar journey with you, they will know how to help. God knows the value I’ve had from surrounding myself with some really fantastic women in business. They don’t just help me brainstorm, they provide support without judging.
Document and learn from your successes
Especially in the beginning of our businesses, we do lots of trials and errors. This is why it’s important to document so you can literally retrace your steps. This also means you have to reflect on your actions. One of my biggest mistakes has been my inconsistency in documenting actions which led to desirable results. I’d always start new projects without referring to blueprints which would have made my life easier. Anyway, we learrrrn and we meeuuuve!
Remember who your God is
This final point is EVERYTHING! Seriously! It changes the game for me. When I find myself worrying, doubting and panicking, I know why. This happens when I think I am alone in this and that whatever I’ve achieved is due to my hardwork. Haha that is such a ridiculous thought. Yes, I work hard of course but I know without a doubt that God’s favour is the X factor for my business.
These days I remind myself that God is way more interested in the success of my business than I can fathom. Dear reader, the purpose of your business idea goes beyond making you money, you were born to serve His purpose. With this in mind, just keep going. He’s got you.
OK, have I convinced you?
Do you promise not to give up?
Do you promise to put your why front and center?
Do you promise to learn from others?
Do you promise to be accountable to someone who gets it?
Do you promise to document and learn from your successes?
Do you promise to remember who your God is?
I promise to do the above as well. If you ever find me even smelling the idea of giving up, would you remind me of this post please? We are all fabulous!
Photo by: Vera Obeng Photography