Let’s talk finances. *shudders*
It’s not exactly my favorite topic either…that is until I got a grip on them.
I used to be embarrassed to talk about money because I was in literally tens of thousands of dollars in credit card debt. So trust me when I say… I know what it’s like to lose sleep over your finances.
However, when my business started making more money, it taught me a lot about my finances. With actual income coming in (my first shop brought in $0. Yes, you read that right), I knew it was time to get serious.
If I wanted to sustain this income in a way that would take care of me for years to come — ya know, instead of paying that minimum credit card balance every month (which is just paying on interest accrued BTW) — I had to get smart.
Owning a business is great and can give you a lot of freedom to pull yourself out of debt and financial strain. But not without a solid plan.
Because I know that struggle firsthand, I wanted to pass on some of the lessons I’ve learned being a business owner, and what financial mistakes I see new entrepreneurs make (and ones I’ve even made myself).
The glorious thing about having your own business is that nobody else can really, truly, tell you what to do. This means no one gets to define success for you.
And yes, I do know that everyone gets to define success in their own right no matter where they work, but with the flexibility of having a business comes more flexibility in defining your goals. You don’t have the limits to income that you might have at a “regular” job. If you want to make more money, you can do that. If you want to work less, you can do that.
But coming from someone who started my business with $78,982 in credit card debt, I can tell you that defining what financial freedom means to you is a must. It helps you stay focused and it helps you stay motivated on those days when you feel like giving up.
By doing so, I paid off all of that debt in a year. And while I can’t just contribute that success to defining what financial freedom means to me, I do have to give credit where credit is due.
If you aren’t allocating a fixed amount of money each month for savings, you’re setting your business up for failure (potentially). It doesn’t always happen, but on the off chance you need that money, and you don’t have it, you’re screwed. Period.
If something were to happen in your personal life that made you step away from your business for any amount of time, you need that cushion. Expenses will still need to be paid in the meantime.
But you can’t do that if you don’t have savings. Trust me on this one, you will need some amount of cushion money because life, and business, are unpredictable at times.
This is about so much more than just writing things down in a planner or to-do list. While those things help support bigger pictures, what I mean is getting your business ideas organized. As someone with ADHD, I’ll be the first to admit this isn’t easy.
But it’s so important to get organized in your business and with the projects that are making you money.
What are you doing with your content? How is it driving leads to your business? You need to get a robust content strategy in place to make sure income keeps coming in.
And do you know when things need to be published? An ad hoc content schedule rarely ever performs well. Create a plan, each month, each quarter, whatever works for you, and stick with it!
This may be a controversial one, but I try to limit who I’m following.
Because it keeps me from becoming distracted. And fewer distractions means more headspace to focus on the things that are working in my business.
I’m not saying there aren’t loads of people out there with great advice, but when you’re listening to a lot of people at once, that information tends to get jumbled up in your head and causes shiny object syndrome.
Maybe what they’re talking about is true and it may even be a good idea, but that doesn’t mean it’s always a good idea for your business right now.
Yes, hiring help is a huge upfront investment. Unless you have a chunk of change just sitting around waiting to be spent on your business, you’re going to feel it a little bit in your pockets. But you’ll get used to it. And better yet… hiring the help you need means the needle keeps moving forward, which means more money for your biz.
How can you be the CEO with all the money-making ideas if you’re so strapped for time that you don’t have any to be a CEO? Because you’re invoicing and reviewing client paperwork all the time? Or trying to manage several social media accounts?
When you can take that plunge, you’ll know. Just don’t put it off forever.
I know, I know. Another thing someone is telling you that you “need” to have in your business. I get it. There’s a lot of noise online. I feel it too.
But because I’m also someone who has tried running a business with several different ideas (teaching yoga, freelance graphic design, opening an Etsy shop….) I can tell you that I didn’t hit a gold mine until I started selling digital products.
Digital products are the foundation of my business because they can help me bring in money without running myself into the ground. And they can do that for you too. They can make you money in your sleep, all by just creating a product one time.
If you want to know how to make digital products work in your own business, I highly encourage you to check out Simple Sustained Shop Sales™.
I get it, digital products aren’t for everybody. Sometimes people just wanna hustle and grind for their supper. But I’m telling you though…there is a much easier way. One that doesn’t end in tears of frustration and financial stress every day. It IS possible to create a whole new revenue stream for yourself.
A year from now, you’ll wish you would have started today. So why wait?