In the online marketing space, there seems to be a false equivalency between the “freedom of quitting your 9 to 5” and “being an entrepreneur.”
More appropriately, there’s the misunderstanding that becoming an entrepreneur won’t mean putting in many, many more hours than 40 per week; this is especially true if you’re hoping to ever be able to replace, let alone exceed, the salary you made in your previous ‘normal’ job.
Not everyone’s cut out for it, and that’s ok.
If you are one of the brave few who’s going to go it alone or has already started working from home or on your own business full time, well, here are a few things you should keep in mind.
#1) Being an entrepreneur means more discipline than ever before.
Working for yourself, “being your own boss,” etc. all sound pretty sweet, but they also mean that you’ve got to really be on top of things.
Organization and discipline need to be far above average to succeed as an entrepreneur.
You will spend long hours starting at a computer screen, even on the activities you aren’t that excited about doing, so make sure you can keep yourself in line.
#2) Being an entrepreneur means sacrificing ‘you’ time.
Not only will you need the discipline to keep hacking away at important tasks, you’ll also need to change your mindset to include less ‘you’ time. As you look at people who have become famous for their entrepreneurial spirit and success, you’ll notice they don’t often subscribe to the same personal reward system that the rest of us do.
For example, you’re worked 9 hours today already, so you should reward yourself with a beer and an hour of your favorite show, right? It sounds great to me, but top tier entrepreneurs are going to shun that time in favor of getting more done.
#3) Being an entrepreneur means managing others.
Whether you’re after “work from home” freedom or want to build a company that someday hits the Fortune 500, you will need to interact with and manage others. Whether their regular employees in an office, or freelancers completing online contracts, smart entrepreneurs know that the biggest key to their own success is the people that they associate themselves with.
Not only that, it’s how they interact with those people. Make sure you’re ready to make the swap from being the one who asks questions to being the one who is constantly asked for direction. Can you keep sane balancing your own tasks with the needs of others?
#4) Finally, being an entrepreneur means leveraging.
Starting out on your own is scary, and so the quickest (and most comfortable) way of growing fast is learning to network with other people who have already been through what you’re going through.
Find out what you’re good at that others aren’t and use that skill to barter early on. Maybe you evaluate someone’s website for SEO for them, and they give you advice on your marketing funnel, etc.
Whatever you have to do, be scrappy and don’t stop working until you’re where you want to be (then build something new).