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‘I Have A Dream’ Is NOT Going to Get Your Business Started

3 simple, but powerful steps to help women over 50 move from dreaming to doing and finally starting the business they've been thinking about for decades.

Every woman over 50 who wants to have her own business should have her own business and can have her own business.

The greatest challenge, however, is often transitioning from dreaming to doing. It’s scary. Moving from ‘thinking about‘ to ‘action‘ is where the dirt hits the fan, where your idea starts to become real. Fear, doubt and lack of clarity may begin to rear their ugly heads, sometime stopping us in our tracks. 

It’s important to know, however, that the negative thinking which is keeping you from real action is usually unfounded and can easily be overcome. 

To begin with taking action to start your business does NOT mean you are IN business. You’re not suddenly married. You’re not committed (not just yet at least). 

It means you’re working towards starting a business. Making a preliminary plan. Considering ideas. Determining if your idea will work or not. Uncovering what your business might look like. 

You’re not designing business cards. 

So, don’t let the idea of moving from dreaming to doing stop you before you even start. Consider taking these small, but concrete steps to gain momentum and make the move from thinking to doing.

1.) Write It Down

The very first thing you need to start a business is an idea. Take out a piece of paper and start brainstorming. 

Write down everything you LOVE to do and everything you’re GREAT at doing. Don’t censor. Dig deep. Nothing’s off limits. Don’t forget the things you loved to do in earlier years, but haven’t done for ages. And, now is certainly not the time to be shy about bragging. Let your ego rip. List everything you know you’re good at; what friends or colleagues compliment you on; and, what others often ask you to do because you do it well.

Next, put the lists side-by-side and start putting ideas together. Look for items that are an obvious match, such as I love writing and I am great at research. Could this be the seed of a freelance writing business? 

Then, go crazy. Start mashing-up ideas. Look for items on both lists that are not obvious matches, but that somehow grab you. What would happen if you put I love dogs and I am excellent at organizing and time management together? How can you make a business from these ideas? A pet service for busy pet owners?

You get the idea. Start writing. Start putting your ideas together. 

2.) Begin defining your goals 

Again, no commitment yet but, if you were to start a business, what would you want it to look like in your life? 

Would you love to be able to work from anywhere so you can travel with your recently retired husband? Are finances a huge consideration – do you need to replace a full-time income from the job you’d like to leave? Or, would you simply like to make a side income that pays for the ‘bucket list’ trips you’ve been talking about. (Personally, one of my goals is to never have to fly coach again… still working on it…)

Understanding your financial, time commitment and lifestyle goals will help you define your business model. Remember having your own business means you get to create a model that fits your life, not the other way around. You need to be clear on your goals to make sure you create the best business model for you.  

3.) Do a little mindset work

Having your own business means total ownership. This is a big responsibility. Now is the time to begin adopting ways of thinking that will serve you well in your business. 

Learn to use fear as a motivator rather than a detractor. You can never really get rid of fear. We’re human and we feel vulnerable in unknown situations, but you can relegate it to the passenger seat. Learn to not let fear be your driver.  

Find your confidence if it’s lacking. People want to do business with people they know, like and trust. I am sure you’ve heard this before. People trust people they perceive as experts. Projecting confidence in what you do is the easiest way to build this trust. 

Start practicing adaptability. One of the great benefits of modern business is the opportunity to quickly change and tweak our business to meet market needs and movements. Technology enables us to move quickly. However, if you’re inflexible you’ll miss this opportunity.

…Speaking from experience having your own business may be one of the greatest gifts you can give to yourself. The chance to use your creativity, skills, passions and interests as a business is life-changing.  You’ll feel more alive than maybe you have in years.

Yes, it’s a big leap, but it’s a step you’re equipped to take. You have life experience and more smarts than maybe you’re comfortable admitting.

Take the first step. Move from dreaming to doing and don’t look back.

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