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How Hard Is Starting My Own Business? I Mean Really.

Why not learn from others that have gone before you?

Starting my own business was the hardest thing I've ever done in my life.  I'm not exaggerating.  If you are thinking of starting your own business and you think it's going to be hard, I want you to multiply what you think is hard by 10.  I really mean it.

If you think sales will start at $1000 a month, assume it will be $100 a month.  If you think you'll start matching what you make today in a year, assume it will be 4 years.  And all your planning, assume everything will be much harder than what you expect it to be.

Why am I saying this?  Because I've done it.  I'm in year 6 of my business.  I'd love to tell you this is already a walk in the park, but it isn't.  I know how hard it is...and still.  If I had to do it all over again, I would.  The thought of going back to working for someone else sounds like a death sentence to me.  I'm doing this no matter what.  I'm not giving up.

That said, let's be real.  Let's not make this any harder on ourselves than it has to be.

Story time.  My 98 year old grandfather passed away last year.  He was one of those guys that always had some good advice to give.  And he was the type of granddad whose advice you welcome.  I am very blessed.

Back in the 40's, my grandfather was living in Cuba and wanted to start a bicycle import business.  He saw an opportunity and wanted at it.  What he told me concerning that is you never learn on your own time.  "Business it too hard," he told me.  Work for someone else doing what it is you want to do.  Learn from them and make your mistake working for them.  There's nothing like learning by doing what it is you want to do working for someone else.  You get first hand access to an expert.

In order to prepare, my grandfather moved his young family from warm Havana to Long Island, NY in the winter time.  He was set to work for a guy that was in that bicycle business.  He told me it was so cheap renting a place in Long Island because no one wanted to be there in the winter.  "It was freezing," he told me which is anything under 60 for a Cuban.  So my warm blooded granddad, grandma, my mom and uncle stuck it out in NY so he could learn.

My point here is to do your homework.  Forget about gut feel, hunches and blind dreaming.  Find out what it is you want to do and figure out a way to learn from people who already do it.  You will be up against so many, many, many (did I say many) things.  The last thing you need is to be blind sided by things you should have known before you started.

Question:  What steps can you take to become an expert in your business field so you can avoid mistakes that could be what forces you to shut your business down?