For as long as I can remember, my mother always said to me: “Don’t be an ‘also-ran’ in life. If 5 000 people run a marathon, 4 999 of them just serve to legitimise the winner. Go out and change the world.”
I remember thinking to myself: Lay off me, woman. I’m only three years old!
But this sense of purpose has led me to achieve dreams that other people may have shared but never pursued or managed to make real. A dream is what inspires you to change the world.
It is what gives your life meaning and existence. But dreaming is one thing; at some point you need to wake up and do. There are a lot of people who live in dream state. A state of ‘one day I will…’
The time is now
The right time is now. There will always be a thousand reasons why you can’t start your business right away. The truth is, these are just excuses – the real reason is fear of failure. What I found helps me get around the paralysis and fear is breaking down any task into small bite-size chunks.
Even the longest journey begins with a single step.
The first step is articulating your dream in simple terms. What do you want to achieve in your life? The second step is finding a business idea that is consistent with your life’s ambition and dream?
Everyone has an idea that they would like to execute. It doesn’t mean that every idea is a good one, but finding your unique idea is definitely a good start.
Forget about capital
You do not need capital to execute your idea, but you need a will to execute. It is often much easier to convert an idea into a product than you think. Think big, but ‘do’ small. When I started my business, it cost R600 to set up a grill at the local farmers’ market. That’s all it took.
All you need is a good product and a market to sell your product to. To be honest, many of my early products were okay but definitely not great. However, because I was at the market every weekend, I could see which of the products were performing well, and which needed work.
More importantly, because people were buying what I was selling, I knew there was demand for what I was selling.
So here are some quick takeaways:
- Running a businesses is damn hard, and if your business is not congruent with your life’s dream, you will quit. This is the reason I believe there is such a high failure rate in small businesses.
- Wake up and do.
- Everyone has an idea, don’t be paralysed by fear.
- Dream big, but start small.
- You don’t need capital, you need to be resourceful with what you have.
- Don’t overthink it, just do it.