I’ve always wanted to have my own business and I believe at the age of 19 that’s when the thought of entrepreneurship started creeping into my head. I was good at so many things and still am to this day, but I couldn’t figure out which one to start with in order to build from the ground up to stick with for a while.

So, what did I do best? I started to experiment and dabble in all of my interests for starting a business. I started with designing t-shirts and literally would hand paint each shirt to give to people to wear and help promote my t-shirt business. Then I decided to leave that behind and focus on creating a bridal lingerie line. I don’t remember the shift in my plan but maybe after a year, I started making accessories to sell. That plan didn’t last either. I finally decided to create my own digital lifestyle magazine where I wrote articles to help empower women of color.

Through that, I created live events around my digital magazine and searched for sponsorships to help create a buzz for brand participation getting involved during my live events. I used local businesses, high-end recognizable brands, and more to help create the attraction to my platform. The events were absolutely successful. However, the digital magazine didn’t catch on with online traffic when trying to reach my potential target audience.

Years later, I shut down my digital magazine due to personal issues and not having the motivation to want to keep or maintain the website anymore. To be honest, I was actually forced to let go of my digital magazine but that’s an entire story for a different time.

Where am I today? I’m now creating my own lounge wear and accessories online boutique store while also building my own athleisure wear fashion line. As I dedicate my time wisely in building and creating something so beautiful to contribute to the world, I’m realizing the real truth of being part of the entrepreneurial lifestyle…..

It’s NOT as glamorous as many people who are already successful try to make it seem to those who are beginning their own business journey. Being an entrepreneur takes a lot of hard work, dedication, heart, and consistency.

Many times, in the beginning, people don’t realize entering entrepreneurship consist of much research to get the ball rolling. Without actual facts to help back up the business to move forward, it will barely thrive on the results needed and required.

Creating a business is not necessarily about what your passionate about to sell to others. It’s more of what can you sell to others that will help improve their lives. What are your target audience needs and wants? How will they benefit from your products or services? What are you offering that is different from your competition? Where is your target audience and how can you reach them to expose your products or services to them?

It goes on and on and the research never really ends until you have everything covered from point A to Z.

If you want to have your own business and be your own boss, my advice to you is to start building thick skin. That means when many doors close in your face you will have to force yourself to continuously and consistently create your own door. That’s the whole point of entrepreneurship.

Don’t take anything personally when business is involved. This is when your faith is being tested and you have to keep pushing through to get to the finish line. There will be a lot of people who won’t see your vision but you can’t allow that to deter you away from your goals. If you believe that the vision will work then you must be obedient to the vision.

Keep in mind you may not see your business flourish for a while because you will be busy funding, investing, marketing and strategizing for your business to really take off. Planning is a huge requirement when building a business. You have to be willing to invest in your own business before anyone else does. In the beginning, you will do a lot on your own unless you are lucky enough to find someone who’s willing to help you if they believe in your dreams. If you do work alone, don’t let that overwhelm you to the point where you get distracted by it. Simply go with the flow because it’s part of the process.

Take the time to learn as much as possible when it comes to building your business. This can be understanding the requirements of an LLC, knowing when to file your business taxes on time, having the appropriate business licenses affiliated with your business, building relationships with vendors and wholesalers, sourcing/sampling, manufacturers, and more.

Now, if you find some difficulties maneuvering around certain topics that you absolutely don’t understand or need help with then the best advice is to hire a professional. They can help guide your business goals perfectly such as hiring an accountant for your taxes.

Also, try to seek out a business mentor that can be good and trustworthy to help guide you in the advice and tips needed to grow and build your business. This will help you stay encouraged and not waste time or money making common mistakes that can easily be avoided with the right guidance given.

Being the BOSS is liberating and with much business success, it can also be financial freedom to your life. However, if you’re not willing to put in the investment in yourself, sleepless nights, and the tears to get there, then you are wasting your time. It’s not always sweet and pretty being an entrepreneur. It can be very ugly and tiresome. If you stick to the end to see how your business will grow, I promise your reward will be worth it all.

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