I had no idea that when I finished my first yoga training in ’13 and decided to become a yoga teacher, that I was taking my first baby step into the world of entrepreneurship. I had never before dreamed of owning my own business or being my own boss; I was still young and finding my way in the world and into my true self.
Those first two years of teaching yoga were up and down; it’s hard work to make a living as an entrepreneur, as well as a yoga teacher, as well as in Los Angeles. When I subbed a class at a studio, hosted a charity event with a friend, and got my first paying private client, I was over the moon. But, failing at finding more clients and studios to work at, those were frustrating times. I filled my extra time with even more teacher trainings, studying, and practicing.
It wasn’t until after I moved from LA to Athens, Greece in ’15 that I settled into a nice weekly teaching schedule, as well as really settled into some confidence in myself as a yoga teacher – which I believe will be a life-long, growth process. But, even then, work was unsteady… I did move to Greece at the height of the financial crisis
So, it took me two whole years to feel a solid foundation and confidence in my yoga teaching.
The biggest thing I’ve learned so far about running a business is that it takes DEDICATION You must stick with it even through the hard times – which are a guarantee you’ll go through when running your own business – because the pay off may take some time to come back around to you.
It was also in ’15 that I started studying to become a holistic health coach with the Institute of Integrative Nutrition. It was in this school that I was actually walked through the steps of what it takes to start and build a business. It was also then I realized that I’d been essentially trying to run my own business on my own for the past two years without knowing; it’s not like I’d been to business school. But now, I had the advantage because I had the tools and support to build a strong foundation for my business, which I try to remember everyday is the business of helping others – my business is not about me, it’s about you.
Even though I was all in, I went through basically the exact same fearful, frustrating, doubtful feelings that I felt when I first started teaching yoga. I launched my blog, which I called my website, and graduated from IIN as a holistic health coach in ’16 with fears of, “Who would want to work with me? How will I ever find someone who wants to work with me? Who would pay me for my work? I’m not worth being paid yet. I’m not worth that much.”… That sort of bullshit.
I needed support on all levels, first some emotional and inspirational support, then technical support. That’s the second biggest thing I’ve learned about starting a business: you need HELP and SUPPORT; it’s never a one-woman show, so outsource the tasks that aren’t your strengths.
It wasn’t until less than two months ago that I and my website designer/tech guy/friend launched my first official website. I COULD NOT HAVE IT DONE ALONE, AND THAT’S OKAY! In fact, it’s more than okay because I DON’T WANT TO DO IT ALL!
Now it’s been almost four years since I became my own my boss, and I finally feel like a boss; not a complete newbie boss – I’ve got both feet in the door on semi-solid ground – but a always remembering my beginners mindset, learning, and seeking and making opportunities boss.
Have I made a ton of money? No. Do I love what I do? More than ever. Are there days that I don’t want to work? Definitely. Is it worth the financial insecurity and hardships of not having a steady paycheck? Hell yes.
Some other tools I use: connecting with other entrepreneurs in and out of my field via social media and in person, podcasts (check out my podcast blog for those), books, and most importantly, being inspired and fueled by others work and accomplishments instead of jealous.
Sending you love and support on your badass business endeavors,
P.S. If you want to check out our work go to thornewellness.com and if you want the contact info for my web designer, e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org