I’ve always been a bit of a loner. This statement may surprise some people who know me, as I am generally seen to be the life and soul of the party, always surrounded by people and always up to something new. But yet, I’m also a total control freak and I have to work very hard to overcome my desire to control every situation and allow people to make their own decisions and mistakes. Can anyone relate or am I out here on my own?
Often it feels like I’m steering this ship alone.
Although I have great people who work for and with me, I haven’t yet found someone who truly shares my values enough to hop on board and steer this entrepreneurial vessel through rough waters. Sometimes I just would love someone to sit down with and bounce ideas off. Someone who gets what I am about and cares as passionately as I do. Not a business partner as such, but someone who is treading a path similar to mine and can relate to my struggles.
But years of experience has taught me that the bad feelings pass and my motivation returns. Now when I’m feeling alone and unmotivated, I use these three steps:
Step 1: Recognise that one of the hardest things about starting your own business is the loneliness that ensues when you are doing all of the hard work to get it off the ground.
We women are naturally herders. We congregate en masse to share and relate. We feel safe and happy when we have someone to listen to our ideas and understand. When you’re still sitting at your desk at 11.30pm, the house is quiet and even your husband has gone to bed, it can be easy to give in to your tired body feeling and question if it’s all worth it.
Step 2: Know that you’re never alone.
I’ve yet to meet another business woman who hasn’t considered giving up when the going was tough. Feeling alone doesn’t mean you’re not strong or that you’re not going to make it. It means you’re human and have feelings, and that you are not a machine. It also means that you probably just need a little R&R or just a little sleep.
Step 3: Be gentle with yourself and most importantly, don’t give up.
Being human means embracing every part of yourself, the good and the bad. And without the bad, you wouldn’t be able to appreciate the good. Being human is about having feelings, both positive and negative: the yin and the yang. However, the more you master your reaction to the negative feelings the easier it will become to handle them when they arise. You’ll recognise that they don’t mean you’re failing. You’ll know that the feeling will pass, and things will be positive again. You’ll build persistence and start to achieve more than ever before.