The last couple of weeks have been insane. Nonstop insanity, I tell you. Sick kids, overbooked with client projects, falling behind on my personal writing projects, last minute school projects, squeezing in parent/teacher conferences, mentoring a couple of Muslimahs starting their own businesses, meeting my business coach’s goals (yes, I have one, and she’s invaluable) and staying on top of the requirements for my certification course. Is it Friday yet? No? Ah, well…
I’m also in the process of putting the final touches on my one-on-one mentoring program, insha’Allah. Details will be coming soon! Speaking of mentoring, last week I was wrapping up a Skype session with one of my mentees. Masha’Allah, this sister is one of the kindest sisters I’ve ever had the pleasure of “meeting.” She’s just a lovely person with a good heart. She has an absolutely wonderful business idea that she’s slowly transforming into reality. Her business will not only benefit her family financially while she works from home, it will also be a huge benefit to the ummah (community), insha’Allah.
As we were ending our early morning session, she said something that really bothered me. She explained that she has had this business idea for a couple of years now. One day she shared the idea and her goal of forming her own business with a good friend. Her friend immediately discouraged her from going further with the idea, explaining that it didn’t seem realistic. The sister was so disappointed, and her friend’s lack of faith caused her to lose faith in her own idea, so she did nothing to move forward – even though her husband tried convincing her not to give up.
This sister’s business requires highly specialized knowledge that she is in the process of obtaining. She is taking her time because she has young children at home who are her priority, but she is making very good progress toward her goal, masha’Allah. What’s really excited her is learning how much the service she plans to provide is already in demand. She’s been approached by several sisters in her community already wanting to to hire her services – and she hasn’t even officially launched the business!
This happens a lot. A loved one who thinks entrepreneurship is risky, or they don’t understand your business idea. This person just doesn’t want to see you take what they consider an unnecessary risk. When I decided to freelance full-time, my father and older aunties were concerned. They couldn’t wrap their minds around the concept that I would be able to find people willing and able to pay me while I stayed at home. Six years later, they’d become my biggest supporters. Or maybe you’re dealing with a classic case of “hateration.”
Being an entrepreneur is hard work. There will be enough days where you’ll doubt the choices you make-you don’t need anyone else putting doubts in your head. One of the best things you can do when you decide to strike out on your own is build a network of support. You need people who will provide unconditional support . Family, friends, community groups, online forums, blogs and social media sites all present an opportunity to surround yourself with the positive encouragement you need.
Have you ever had someone question your business idea, or ability to earn an income working at home? If so, how did you handle it?