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Lessons Learned with Hindsight

 

5lessonslearned - for Lessons Learned Blog

I love working with new entrepreneurs, there’s a fresh passion, determination and optimism that their business will succeed no matter what.

My role as a coach is make sure that bubbling positive energy isn’t extinguished by ensuring they’re prepared for the challenges along the way; and that they not only have the necessary tools they need to make their business succeed, but also know how to use those tools.

Anyone who has a business, no matter how successful will tell you it’s incredibly hard work; especially at the beginning.  There are a few things I’ve learned, either from my own painful experience or those around me – clients, family and friends. For those who are either thinking of starting a business or are already in it, you may find these useful:

Live well Below Your Means.  We all want to look fabulous (my favourite word 😊); it’s easy to be seduced by the Jones’s and want to keep up with them.  But if you want to start with a good foundation, simplify your life and do try to live as inexpensively as possible.

Always, Always Have Savings.  If you don’t already have savings, please try and start, even if it’s £5.00 a month and it’s increased over time.  Start with any amount you can consistently afford.  But the key word is CONSISTENT.  Whatever amount you can start with, it must be done regularly, i.e. monthly.

You may want to have three savings for the following:

Financial Freedom/Your Dream – to clear your debts or and your business website, marketing, etc.

Short-Term – for car, furniture, etc.

Golden Goose – towards your retirement (no matter your age).

Education – for books, courses, events for your self-development.

Never Eat Your Golden Goose.  Don’t spend the money you’re saving for retirement.  Not everyone agrees with me on this one, I know people who have used money in this account, given themselves a deadline to pay the money back and paid it back with interest…and I know people who have not yet been able to pay all the money back.

Never Spend Your Tax. I know it’s soo obvious that you shouldn’t spend the money set aside for your tax; but it’ll look very enticing when there’s an emergency.  Don’t touch it!  Do not do it!  You’re better off getting multiple jobs to get the money you need.

People will Disappoint You (including friends & family).  There’s nothing you can do about this one.  Sometimes people do what they say they’ll do, other times they’ll disappoint you. They may not mean to, but it’ll happen. Saying ‘Be prepared for it’, sounds pessimistic; so, I’ll just say ‘There’s a lesson to be learnt from it.’  C’est la vie.

I know there are many more, these were the ones that seem to be the most painful.

Having a business is still 100% worth it, but it’s always much better to be prepared. 😊

What lessons have you learned from your entrepreneurial journey?

 

Sow those Wild Oats

A friend of mine, a lover of chick flicks, Mills & Boons, finding ‘The One’ and ‘happily ever afters’, is getting married.  I am thrilled for her, will obviously be attending the wedding and I’m looking forward to my trip to Selfridges Shoe Hall and wearing my slinky Herve Leger bandage dress. 

She has already been hinting about my current marital status or should I say the lack of it and how she ‘so wants me to find ‘The One’ just like she has done’….I held back my reflex action, which was to spit out my recently sipped scrumptious red wine. 

Could have been me!

Could have been me!

Oh hell, the torturous matchmaking has already started!  Please God, let her not put me on the singles corner table on the day!

I used to think my friend was sensible and she normally is on other things; however, when it comes to romance she lives by chick flicks and romance novels.  I use to love chick flicks like ‘Dirty Dancing’ ‘Love Actually’, and ‘Pretty Woman – a movie I’m convinced made prostitutes work that much harder.   I just believe that real life is nothing like chick flicks. 

Personally, I think chick flicks are made to deceive us, they make us think that being in a relationship, any relationship is easy and better than being single…news flash, it isn’t!  They convey the message that your life is empty and lonely until you get the guy or girl, and then once you get ‘The One’ all your problems cease to exist….it doesn’t. 

Real life isn’t that straightforward and I can happily tell you that being single is an absolute blast and your life is as empty and lonely as you choose it to be.  Come on people, we live in one of the greatest and most vibrant cities in the world! 

Single and fabulous!

Single and fabulous!

If you’re miserable as a single person, you will be miserable as a ‘coupled’ person, even worse you’ll likely make someone as miserable as you are 🙂

I can’t tell you the amount of parties, events and functions that I’ve been to, jokingly flirted my way round people I’ve come in contact with, stayed up partying all night, and travelled – admittedly not as extensively as I would like.  I may not have been able to do all of these things… and more 🙂, if I was coupled up.

Cocktails, anyone?

Cocktails, anyone?

I have childhood friends who got married very early and who admit that they’re not the same person they were when they got married.  They read romance novels, watched chick flicks, dreamt of happily ever after but were not prepared for the reality of being married. 

I’m not saying having someone is bad or boring; I’m just saying being single is not a bad thing and can be great, especially if the alternative is settling for second best.

Personally I think everyone should figure out who they are and what they want as individuals before getting seriously coupled up.  I believe that the ‘single’ period is when all ‘wild oats’ should be sown, get it out of your system, unless you both believe in Polygamy – well that’s a whole other blog 🙂.