I went to review my LinkedIn profile yesterday and almost teared up. My current job posting showed that I've been working for my firm for an entire year. You read that correctly! Year One is almost in the books. I'm still a little in shock about the moment. I felt the same when I realized that I had been a homeowner for an entire year. You never really realize how long, or short, a year can be until you look back and reflect on the date. Years seem forever, until the year is over. That thought is kind of appropriate considering we are coming upon New Year's Eve. The time of year when people my age start to wonder what they have accomplished in their life so far that will leave a legacy.
I say all that to help those that my firm intends to counsel understand that you can't get that year back. If you want to start a business, write that novel, paint that painting, whatever. Today is the best day to get started. It's not going to be easy in any respect. There were many times that I was ready to be done, completely done and just quit. So many struggles and not all of them have been overcome yet, though the firm is still in operation. That says a lot. It says a lot about you as well if you launched your business this year.
Everyone always sees the success stories yet never look back through everything necessary to stay in business, not just open a business. Opening the business is the relatively easy part compared to staying in business. I have a previous post which cites to other well-known business individuals, authors, and creators. None of them were overnight successes. There were years, setbacks, failures, and sleepless nights. Major well-known individuals have slept out of their car, job-hopped to make room for reaching their dream, and overcame people telling them just to give it up and get a real job. Make no doubt about it, your business is your real job. Even the person that could hire you if you quit and "got a real job" started and went through exactly what you are going through now. They just didn't give up.
I was able to attend a conference a while back. One of the speakers said something that made an impression on me. I even gave the quote away to a few people. One of the people that I worked with a few weeks ago proved its validity.
The particular individual, who shall remain unnamed, needed to get over a few obstacles in their path. With every attempt, they could only ever get past the first obstacle. I stood waiting for where they were supposed to meet me. On their second to last attempt before heading home for the day, I asked them, "Are you done?!" Not signaling that they should quit; just gauging their determination. The response was a resounding, "No!" They went back and tried again.
The quote from that speaker went like this: "Don't stop when you're tired; stop when you're done."
There are going to be many days when you're tired and ready to be done. I'm, however, looking back over the year and realizing that I've been tired, felt defeated, and completely alone trying to figure everything out. Yet here it is the end of Year One and my firm is not done yet. Could it happen by the end of the month?... Could. There's always enticing offers that seem better. Yet when I look around and see and read other testimonies, I know that I will really consider my options and think, "Will I wonder whether I could have made it as a law firm owner? Do you really want to work for another firm or are you just tired and overwhelmed with the insecurities that come with starting and running a law firm?" When you're tired and feel defeated and ready to quit, ask yourself those questions. I know I'm going to do so.
If you've been here before or looking to get here, leave a comment and encourage someone else, even me, with your testimony regarding entrepreneurship.