5 Lessons From A Profitable First Year In Business
I wanted to share some of the biggest lessons I learned from pursuing a God-given dream that I didn’t expect but absolutely love — and making it profitable. So let’s not waste another minute.
LESSON #1: Confidence is key. But it doesn't come from you; it comes from Christ and connecting to your work.
This was a hard one … mostly because I really love to be in control… of everything if I can. Ha! I need to feel on top of it, and for most of my life confidence was ALWAYS the area that I was lacking.
I remember getting compliments and not being able to believe them because my confidence was so diminished. And when it came to starting a brand new business (that I didn’t have any clue how to do — or so it felt), I knew that was an area I needed vast support in.
And what I discovered was that confidence wasn’t something I could turn off or on — because it doesn’t start with me. Confidence (trust and faith in myself) comes from Christ. He’s given me my identity, and I know that He has me no matter the circumstance. I can trust Him, so I can have confidence.
Second, confidence came when I got to connect to the work — even when I wasn’t making money from it. There was a dry period when I didn’t make any money or talk to anyone on the phone for anything. I was working hard and not seeing the fruits of that labor, and it made me start questioning my ability as a coach.
Then I started doing some free sessions and found that I was able to help. Facilitating light bulb moments is what lights me up, so getting to do that helped me remember WHY I do this and helped me believe even more that I could.
And when that happened, so did momentum in my business.
LESSON #2: Your position and message matter more than you think.
There was a time when I was SUPER clear on what I was here to do. And that’s when I was getting instant clients. Then somewhere along the way, I started to blend in with everyone else. I wasn’t unique, and I definitely wasn’t living my calling anymore.
Then my coach helped me really dig in and see what the missing link was. It turns out it was my faith. When I started acting like all the other coaches, it totally took away the thing that made me me. But when I shifted, I instantly saw a difference.
People engaged with content. They asked me questions. They booked discovery calls. All because I shared my message from my unique perspective. And I’ve seen this happen over and over with clients too.
When they find their “thing,” their hook everything changes. Suddenly they stand out and it becomes oh so easy to become the go-to gal. But you have to know your unique selling point — your secret sauce and work it into EVERYTHING you do.
That changed everything for me and for clients. So finding your position and sharing that with your message is SO crucial to your business. As a bonus, it helps kicking comparison to the side even easier!
What makes your business unique?
LESSON #3: Surrender makes the journey sweeter.
Here’s a thing I believe isn’t very popular. Everyone wants you to know that your success is inevitable. And, frankly, I see brilliant people fail all the time. I also see amazing people with very little in their lives.
So I can’t believe that I’m gonna get everything or that success is a guarantee. But what I do know is that I have a calling and I know what I need to do. And the rest I can lay down at the feet of the Lord and let Him show me how He chooses to move.
Sometimes that’s been in big gestures. And sometimes it’s been in big failures. I was not only able to handle it, but also move on because I know I’m in His hands.
Surrender has literally been the #1 strategy in my business since preparing to leave my job. I knew so much was out of my hands that I had to trust He would show up. And He has every single time.
I didn’t make 6 figures in a year. But I do make more than what I need by serving people that I love in a way that brings me joy. And I have space for one of the first times in my life. THAT is success. And while I could be filled with worry about whether or not it’ll last, I don’t… because I’ve surrendered.
So stop getting attached to the outcome and get attached to your calling.
LESSON #4: You can't hide and build success. You've got to show up and serve.
For a long time I built a barrier between myself and potential clients. It was called content. I’m good at content. And it was easy. And that’s how I built my first business.
The trouble is that’s a LONG-TERM game in a lot of ways (the way I was doing it anyway). And the people who did show up for that reason were so NOT ideal clients. The truth is you have to take it a step further… connections.
I couldn’t hide behind my computer screen and I definitely couldn’t just hide period. I had to get visible and use that as a platform to serve and connect. Suddenly, when content wasn’t about ME and all my smarts but became about the people I served and not being afraid to disagree, things changed.
It allowed me to build a tribe and go deep. And y’all allowed me to be me and that made me NOT be afraid to sell because I knew I was serving every time I did. It changed the game to stop hiding and start serving.
What’s a fear that’s keeping you from showing up and serving in your business?
LESSON #5: Success isn't as complicated as we make it most of the time.
For a long time, I felt really stuck. Just before summer I was on the verge of burnout and I wasn’t seeing results in my business — at least not the ones I was looking for.
I didn’t understand the disconnect I was feeling. What was wrong? I’m a smart person, and I just couldn’t figure out why I wasn’t seeing progress. Why was this so hard?
Turns out, I was working hard, but all at the WRONG things.
I was getting visible — but not setting myself apart — and doing free coaching calls — but never selling… ever. I knew I was called to this but I never shared it with anyone or offered help. It turns out that when you focus on the right things done in the right spirit, everything changes.
It comes down to visibility that establishes who you are and how you uniquely serve and sales activities that help you serve and sell every day. It really is pretty simple.
But FEAR is what makes it complicated. COMPARISON distracts us with strategies far ahead of our time. And COMFORT keeps us from taking risks. There is power in simplicity — especially when we put God into the picture.
It’s how I came up with my Heart (kicking out fear), Soul (replacing it with faith), and Strategy (finding your simple path to success) framework because those 3 things will make the most difference for you.
What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned as an entrepreneur?