When I first started my business back in 2013, I had no idea the hurdles that I was about to face. I had no idea the successes either. To be frank, I didn’t know much about running a business at all. I was kind of just winging it.
So when I inevitably began to run into obstacles I found myself in total panic mode. Being the stubborn gal that I am, I tried to do, fix, and be everything myself.
You can imagine how well that turned out.
Giving up the power of control for me, even control over things that would rightfully be better in the hands of someone else (like social media maintenance, graphic design, anything tech related), was so difficult for me that I hung on, continuing to stretch myself so thin that I eventually completely burnt out.
Worse, I wouldn’t talk to anyone about these feelings. I felt ashamed, like a total fraud. It really chipped away at my confidence and my ability to think clearly.
One day, after moving to a new city where I knew no one, and sending out about 20 emails to city specific blogs hoping I could drum up a feature piece on myself and my new business, I got an unexpected email back. It wasn’t the answer I wanted, but it was the answer I needed. (Funny how that works sometimes, isn’t it?)
I was invited to a weekly meet up where everyone from my industry gathered for 2 hours from 8am-10am every Thursday morning without fail, to discuss strategy, moving forward, and how we could support each other.
It was life changing.
Going to those meetings every week changed my life, and it changed my career. For the first time I didn’t feel so alone in my business, and I had a network of people I could lean on for advice and support. Through their stories I got to see that I wasn’t alone in the way I felt, in the struggles I faced, and through their presence, we got over those hurdles together. Equally important was having them to celebrate the successes with, to validate the way I felt, to cheer me on, to just be there.
Pretty powerful, right?
I know how difficult it can be to let go of the idea of doing it all alone, especially when we’ve been at it so long. But ask yourself—are we really meant to go it alone? Are we really better off stretching ourselves so thin that we hardly remember why we started? What if surrounding myself with the right people could change everything?
Then go out there and find your tribe.
Leave a comment and let me know some of your favorite online and in person communities, and how joining them has changed your life and business.