Here are the real things business owners don’t share. Let's be honest here!
1. It is harder than it looks, and way harder than I thought. Starting and operating a business is like an ongoing rollercoaster. There are so many highs and lows and sometimes you may feel sick because you invest every inch of your body, your entire heart, and soul into it.
This venture, this project, it’s your baby. It’s everything to you.
2. As a business owner you carry a huge load of responsibility. Not only are you responsible for the business itself but you now have employees who depend on you. You need to be there for them, without being there too much, and for anyone like me, it is difficult. I feel for everyone I connect with, and I'm the most selfless person out there - I truly just want to see the people around me grow to their full potential. Your future, your lives - it means something to me. I want to help you, and I know I can.
3. As a business owner, you try to schedule days to balance life, family, school, and work- but because you’re involved in the industry, you’re committed ….. Work is oftentimes pure love and sometimes leaves you questioning… is it worth the long hours and the personal sacrifices? I admire anyone taking the initiative to balance everything life has to offer. Isn’t it so infuriating when people know you make your own schedule? People think you have alllllllll the time in the world, when you don’t. OH - she isn’t doing clients, I guess she has more time. THE OPPOSITE- this girl ain’t doing clients because SHE IS FULL TIME WITH STUDENTS AND PRODUCTS. As much as I love clients, family, and friends reaching out to me - I stopped providing services because another area of my business rapidly evolved.
4. Sometimes you doubt your own decisions and have debates in your head. You don't let this show because you would not want others to think you are stressed about your business. Doubting yourself is normal and helps rationalize your decisions. Seriously, no one understands this unless they own a business. Your decisions are seen and analyzed by the public so of course it isn't easy. Also keep in mind that people misunderstand things ALWAYS. JUST DO YOUR OWN THING.
5. There are days where things do not go as planned. I think it is a common perception that business owners are living a luxurious dream which most likely is not the case. The business comes before everything! I mean everything! Likewise, it only takes a couple of rude customers to show you that you are not even seen as a human being anymore.
6. Everyone wants everything for free. This is just the world we live in right now. As business owners, we work our ASSES off. You may have people asking for freebies and only buy when things are on sale. I know everyone likes a deal… I am guilty too! But from a business perspective it is a loss. We have participated in so many giveaways that did not benefit us. Why? Because our audience isn’t the general population, it’s a small localized area.
7. You have to spend time on things that are not profitable. For example, paperwork. This is time consuming and does not make the business money but needs to be done. Paperwork does not pay your expenses so it gets pushed to the side and feels like a complete burden. It is also a very important part of operating a business. This area is never fun, it’s tiring and stressful and unorganized.
8. FYI - Business taxes suck. There is no getting around that one!
9. Social life primarily consists of co-workers and customers. The guilt I feel about missing out on certain family or friend events is always there! Someone will ask why you weren't there. When you tell them you have to work they are confused because everyone thinks when you own a business, you can do what you want, when you want. However, it is the complete opposite. So many times I am asked “Can’t you just take the day off?” … I mean I could I guess.. BUT how is that beneficial to my business when I have a HUGE list of things scheduled to do that day? I feel anxious when I am not working for my business! Taking a day off is honestly hard! Having a business partner is the greatest gift of all! Someone who understands and truly relates to your feelings and thoughts. I can’t express how hard this is. But you need to be bolder, be stronger, and stand up for yourself - if you don’t, your business won’t succeed. You won’t thrive - this is life.
YOU either stay a leader, becoming a leader or be nothing but a follower. I encourage you to lead, to express your opinions, be yourself and follow your heart, in everything you do.
Seriously, as you get older it is harder to keep up with social networks- but keep in mind, the friends you have, the true friends, will always be there for you - regardless of anything.
This is not to deter you from starting a business. But it's the reality of business that I wanted to bring to light and let other business owners know, we go through this and you are not alone!
It is not all glitter and glam…, not all rainbows and sunshine - it’s a rollercoaster.
That being said, I wouldn't change it for the world. The passion I have for my businesses drives and empowers me! There is nothing more exciting than seeing your vision come to life.
I wake up every morning excited to help other people create the life of their dreams.
Kristie Lawlor, BA
Director of Operations
Co-Owner House of Glam Inc.
Co-Owner Lash Legend®