No one tells you about Entrepreneur Isolation when you're starting out. Not many people mention Entrepreneur Isolation even when they're doing well in their businesses. But not talking about it is costing us dearly.
Entrepreneur Isolation - it's a thing
I sat in the bath and cried big, hot salty tears. I felt desperate and pathetic and like I was failing at everything. I’d had a row with my husband, my daughter had told me how mean I was, and to top it all I hadn’t had one sign up for a course I was running.
As the tears came so did a familiar thought:
“I’m not cut out for this. Running my own business is too hard. It’s time to quit”.
This particular experience happened around a year ago. But those same feelings of self-doubt and despair happen way more regularly than you might think.
My friend and fellow coach Sheri calls these times the ‘burn it all down’ days. We all have them from time to time.
Sometimes they’re triggered by a big disappointment (a course doesn’t fill, a client cancels, no one buys your thing), Sometimes they’re caused by the intensity of running your own business. Sometimes it just a combination of things - life + business + the human experience = bit of a meltdown.
The first time it happened to me it triggered a downward spiral that took me weeks to emerge from. The fact that I was feeling so down on myself and my business just reinforced to me that I wasn’t cut out for this life. I stopped putting my stuff out and just retreated. I didn’t reach out to potential clients, stopped blogging, and felt like the last dredges of my confidence were ebbing away.
The thing that turned it around was a conversation I couldn’t get out of. It was with another coach - someone a friend of a friend had connected me with and I really didn’t want to hop on the phone for our ‘meeting’, but I couldn’t think of a decent excuse to cancel. So I talked to her. And immediately felt lots better. It was so lovely to talk to someone who knew what it was like working online, trying to build a business, shared my pain of wrestling with MailChimp automations. I felt like a weight was lifted.
And then she said: ‘there are some days I feel like I should quit trying to do this.’
“The two most powerful words when we’re in struggle: Me Too” Brene Brown
Because there is NOTHING like having someone else let you know the ‘get it’, the feel your pain, they’ve been there too.
But who do you have in your life right now who really gets it? Who knows what it’s like to have those ‘I’m not cut out for this’ moments?
My ‘real life’ friends and family who no idea what I do to earn my crust. Sure, they know it’s something to do with coaching and the internet, but any more than that and they’re lost.
They don’t know the joy of FINALLY getting your opt-in PDF to download in the way you need it to, or the frustration of wrestling with a tech issue for so many hours you’re bum has gone numb. Or the sense of satisfaction when a client has that breakthrough, takes the step or signs up for more coaching sessions.
Nor do they know how to help when you’ve not had a new client in weeks (months), have followed every single bloody step in someone’s foolproof blueprint with barely any results …
Or when you feel like everyone is having success except you.
For those moments you NEED people in your corner who get it. Who will celebrate, commiserate and talk you down from the ledge.
People who will say, ‘me too’.
The antidotes to Entrepreneur Isolation are Community, Sisterhood, and Support.
Find your people. Seek out the ones who ‘get it’
This is just one of the key components of The Supernova Collective - connecting you with your very own community of fellow travelers who share your experience.
When we work in community, we build strong supportive bonds that make all the difference. We get to rise together. We develop confidence, build strength and get to practice being visible in a supportive, sisterhood.