Change Your Mindset, Change Your Life. An except from Charlene Walters’ new book Launch Your Inner Entrepreneur:
One day, you will be happily working for someone else: exceeding monthly goals and growing their profits. And then, another day, you’ll realize that you’re not getting the recognition or opportunities that you deserve. It’s at that moment that you’ll wonder why the heck you’re doing this to yourself and—bam!—your entrepreneurial lightbulb will begin to glow. Are you a woman who wants to take control of your earnings and your life? Are you dissatisfied with the corporate grind and want to follow your passions professionally? Are you tired of getting paid less than your peers for doing the same work? I’ve been there before, and I know what you’re experiencing.
Perhaps you’ve already struck out on your own as an entrepreneur, or maybe you hope to do so in the near future. It’s a big jump either way, and you’ll need extra support to give it your best shot. If you’re like many women (myself included), you are also the primary breadwinner in your household and have a burning desire to bring in additional income for your family. I don’t blame you: you want to take care of them and give them the best. If any of these statements ring true, then this is the book for you and now is the time to take action, as there will be many new business opportunities for female entrepreneurs resulting from morphing industries in the aftermath of COVID-19. You deserve this chance!
You won’t be alone, either—more women are starting businesses than ever before. In fact, 42 percent of all small business or franchise owners are women, and there are 13 million female-owned businesses contributing to $1.9 trillion in revenue. Current trends suggest it’s likely these numbers will keep rising—so it’s time for you to grab your share of the revenue, and today is the day to get started.
Your transformation will begin in the mind. After all, entrepreneurship is an inside job. If you’re a woman who is ready to take the plunge into becoming a company founder, then there are important mental shifts that you must make before you kick off your journey. You must put aside your insecurities and doubts about the success or failure of your venture, as well as the fears associated with no longer receiving a steady paycheck, so that you can move forward to become an effective business owner.
This is a tall order, but taking action is the first of 10 Mindset Shifts you’ll read about in Launch Your Inner Entrepreneur that you must embrace as a “fempreneur” (a female entrepreneur) if you not only want to make that initial entrepreneurial leap, but also hope to continue to grow and expand your business over time— launching your inner entrepreneur and unleashing the startup within.
It Starts in Your Mind
As an entrepreneurship mentor who has worked closely with countless female entrepreneurs, I can testify from firsthand experience that for women, there is so much about becoming an entrepreneur that begins with transforming the way you think. Research shows that many women suffer from deficits in confidence and feel more doubt and insecurity about their abilities and talents than men do—insecurities that can hold them back from ever starting down the entrepreneurial path. So let’s begin by talking about the mindset adjustment required for a woman to become a true entrepreneur. Are you ready? I hope so.
A Mindset Shift related to taking action will be central to your success in terms of not only having the confidence to get your business off the ground, but also in regard to what you’ll need to do every single day to keep moving your business forward. Taking action is a key component of an entrepreneurial mindset. Thriving female business owners are doers, not merely dreamers (although I do encourage you to aim high). This Mindset Shift will show you a few of the ways you can take action and get started.
Getting Ready to Flip the Switch
Motivation to become an entrepreneur is one piece of the puzzle for women who aspire to be company founders. But a mental switch must flip in your brain when it comes to actually becoming an entrepreneur—a switch that, once activated, will trigger changes in your thinking and behavior, helping to create an entrepreneurial mindset that propels you to action. You must be ready to embrace the power of this new way of thinking to catapult your career in a more independent direction.
Starting as a Side Hustle
While taking action is your ultimate goal, you don’t have to jump headfirst
into it without a trial run. The path of a fempreneur requires a huge career
commitment, which is why beginning with a gig or “side hustle” while
you’re still traditionally employed is a smart way to test the waters. A recent
study found that more than 44 million Americans have some sort of side
Further, 51 percent of the women surveyed had side hustles compared
to only 35 percent of the men surveyed.
What are the benefits of this more measured approach? Establishing a
side hustle provides aspiring fempreneurs with both the security of a stable
income and the freedom to experiment with growing a company separate
from their day job. Building your business more slowly after hours while
still working full-time can take the financial pressure off, allowing you to
continue to bring in pay while potentially growing your venture’s revenue
at the same time. If and when you’re financially and emotionally ready to
turn your side gig into full-time entrepreneurship, then you can quit your
day job. A side hustle is how I got started, a little at a time.
There are countless possible launching pads for a side hustle that you
can grow into a full-time business, such as teaching, writing, digital marketing, tutoring, coaching, child care, pet care, AI, IT, training, product
development, photography, real estate, and graphic design. You might also
consider food preparation, catering, cleaning, repair services, landscaping, market research, event planning, house-sitting, beautician/stylist
services—the list goes on depending on your own skills, interests, and
expertise, and is limited only by your imagination. Do you like to work with
people, throw virtual parties, or create things? Are you eager to showcase
your writing talent? Consider where you can provide the most value while
reaping the highest reward. What better way to develop yourself than to
start a company? And I would add that there is no smarter way to reach
that goal than greasing the wheels for it with a well-planned side hustle.
Going for It
With your decision to launch a company, you jump-start your life, your earnings, and your potential. Founding a startup also gives you a chance to create a business that exactly matches your values, vision, passion, and expertise. Rather than taking this ability for granted, consider whether it makes sense in your career and your life to seek a more innovative path. Do you want to embrace this power to make a move and seize control of your own destiny? If you heard your mind screaming “Yes!” as you read that question, then your independence may be just around the corner. It all starts with a desire and a plan—the pace and practice of the Mindset Shift is up to you. You’ve got this, girl.
“Excerpt from Launch Your Inner Entrepreneur: 10 Mindset Shifts for Women to Take Action, Unleash Creativity, and Achieve Financial Success by Charlene Walters (McGraw Hill, February 2021).”