I often tell the story of how I started my business. From getting a pink slip to the fear of ending up homeless, it seems to resonate with folks. But I don’t often share the fact that looking back I really wish I’d been brave enough to start my business before I was forced to due to that pink slip. I spent years working in a job that literally had me in tears most days. I longed to leave it. I even went to school for medical coding and billing (which was a complete waste of my time and money). But not once did I seriously consider that I could work from home as my own boss. Unfortunately, I spent way too much time crying on the commute to and from work because I believed the myths about starting your own business.
Don’t let the following 5 myths keep you from starting your own work from home business.
You need lots of money to start a business.
This is a lie. I started my business with less than $200. Home based businesses often have a low startup cost. For some it might require purchasing a computer, for others it may be materials for creating a product or packing materials for shipping said product. Just be aware that as you make money, you will want to reinvest it in your business if you want your business to grow.
You have to provide something totally unique.
Have you ever heard the saying,” There’s nothing new under the sun.”? While occasionally someone in the business world has a breakthrough idea or product, that’s not true the majority of the time. Some of the most lucrative businesses have simply built on old ideas and presented them in new and unique ways. It’s not what your business provides that needs to be unique, it’s how you provide it that needs to be different. And this isn’t as hard as it may sound since everyone is different and brings different skills and expertise to their business.
You have to do a lot of networking.
While this may have been true 20 years ago, you no longer have to attend every local Chamber of Commerce meeting or networking event to market your business. With social media and apps like Zoom that allow you to meet face to face via computer, you can connect with others without the need for traditional style networking.
You need legal counsel to guide you when starting your business.
While having legal counsel is a great thing to have access to when starting a business, it’s not a requirement. There are plenty of resources that will allow you to research the legal aspects of starting a work from home business. With that said, you should also be aware there are many attorneys out there that have ‘unbundled’ their services, meaning instead of being a part of every aspect of your business startup, you can go to them for one off items like reviewing your services contract or registering you as an LLC. You can also get help from organizations like SCORE.
You have to quit your job before you can start a home business.
While it may be ideal to be able to devote all of your time to starting your work from home business, in many cases it’s just not possible. Even if you’re lucky enough to have a good-sized savings or aren’t relying on your income to keep a roof over your head you may still need the benefits that your current job provides. Lots of people start their businesses while still working for someone else. Starting out with a part time home business allows you to maintain the income and/or benefits you need while still starting your home business. This will allow you to grow your business until it’s able to support those needs. When it gets to that point, then you can give your two-week notice and commit yourself to your own business, working from home.
When I look back at those years of crying during my commute it’s frustrating. The fact that I never considered starting my own work from home business because I believed myths like the ones above is just sad. No one should cry about work, nor should you feel stuck in a job you hate. Being your own boss and loving what you do isn’t a myth, it can be reality.
These myths about starting a business are an example of how a mindset can sabotage you both when you want to start working from home or when you’re trying to grow your home business. Be sure to join me in my private Home Business Jumpstart Facebook Group and attend the free livestream “5 Mindset Shifts You Must Make to Move from Employee to Entrepreneur” on Friday, September 10th at 7 pm ET where I’ll share actionable tips that can help you overcome mindsets that are holding