I suppose I’ve been an entrepreneur ever since that summer day, aged nine, that I set up a lemonade stand with my childhood best friend and sold cups of refreshing-amazingness to the (few) passersby who happened to meander down her street. It wasn’t a particularly successful business venture, and soon we gave up. By sundown we were throwing water balloons at cars and running to hide in the bushes instead.
I didn’t know it, of course. I just thought I liked to create things. I just thought I had a lot of ideas, and it wasn’t until I found myself pressured as a young adult to conform to society’s rules that I realized I totally wasn’t cool with them.
I dropped out of University in my third year (rebel) and got my real estate license (entrepreneur). I quit my career in real estate (rebel) and started doing freelance writing for various businesses (entrepreneur) while traveling Europe like a gypsy (rebel).
And for the last year, I’ve been building my clothing line, Sutie Skirts, becoming more and more of an entrepreneur while battling my incessant need for freedom and travel – with a healthy dose of rebellion.
I’ve learned so much over this past year, but when it comes down to it, these are the 5 things I never knew about entrepreneurship that I kinda wish I had. You know, just for preparation’s sake.
1. It requires you to be a voracious reader
I like to read things like Eat, Pray, Love and Girl Boss, but now I have little time for that, and instead I find myself reading out of a complete necessity to learn. From website SEO, to marketing strategies, to wholesale, down to ridiculous details like shipping and duties, the list of things to learn is literally endless.
2. If you don’t have cashflow, you don’t have a business
Only having run a service-based business, I never realized how insanely expensive getting into a clothing business could possibly be. I love having a product-based business so much more because I feel like I’m creating something outside of myself, but damn, is it ever expensive! If I don’t have cashflow – ie. if I’m not able to pay for product – I do not have a business. Period.
3. It’s the most wonderful opportunity for personal development
Forget relationships and therapists! If you want your deepest insecurities to be made alarmingly clear to you in a seeming instant, start a business. Okay, maybe don’t forget the therapist. You’ll be needing her. But, even though this may seem like a negative thing, we all have insecurities – entrepreneurship just has it’s way of making them more obvious, and providing you with ample opportunities to grow and develop as a human being.
4. Entrepreneurs have the rebellion gene
As noted above, rebel and entrepreneur are one-in-the-same. I don’t think I know a single entrepreneur who isn’t a bit of a rebel, because that’s kind of why we do it: we want to be free, and we are so not up for living by your rules, society!
5. Everyone possesses the ability to be an entrepreneur
I am a believer of this, because I think we are all creators. If you were to ask a group of 5 year olds about their creativity, each and every one of them would have something wonderful and unique to offer. If you can dream up an idea, an invention, or virtually anything at all, you can be an entrepreneur. The question is: do you want to be?
Well, that’s that. I’m still terrible at writing conclusions, so instead of trying to fumble one, I’ll just say this:
It’s okay to be too creative for a nine-to-five.
Ps. I stole that. Kind of.