James and I have been enjoying some time away in Vail, Colorado, and it’s been amazing! There was over a foot of snow last week so we’ve been hitting the slopes, cozying up next to the fireplace in our suite, and enjoying the wintry weather.
Being in Vail has also given us the chance to spend time with dear friends of ours who’re also vacationing here. These friends are entrepreneurs, like James and I, who’re doing big things in their businesses. They have been some of our biggest sources of encouragement and support along our business journey, and I love getting the chance to share stories and bounce ideas off of them face to face. We only see them a few times a year, but when we do we come away from our time together feeling like we just received an extra boost of energy and support from them.
You see, when I was starting out as an entrepreneur I remember feeling pretty lonely. I didn’t have many (if any) other entrepreneurial friends at that time, and it was sort of tough going down this new path that many people just didn’t quite relate to.
As an entrepreneur, you’ve probably had moments when people you care about just don’t “get” you. This is something that’s come up for me a number of times along my own journey, and something I hear all the time from my clients who’re really starting to make big changes and in their lives and businesses.
After all, being an entrepreneur takes serious guts. It usually means shaking things up and creating your own (new) path. Maybe you’ve left behind a “successful” career and your family’s telling you they just don’t understand why you’d do that. Maybe you’re investing in yourself and your biz because you know that’s what it takes to get to where you want to be, but your partner thinks you’re being too risky. Perhaps you’re boldly celebrating your goals and successes, and certain friends think you’re being too showy.
It can be painful to not be understood or supported by those we’re close to, but it’s often because they haven’t been in your shoes and just aren’t able to fully relate.
And that’s why I’ve found that finding people who are walking a similar entrepreneurial path can be such a source of encouragement and support. They’re going through some of the same challenges, experiencing similar successes, and share a like-mindedness that only comes from venturing into the world of entrepreneurship. I’ve learned so much from the friends I’ve made who’re also running their own businesses, and they continue to be an important support network for my own journey.
In fact, I’ve partnered with them through live events, online programs, and much more – which has been an incredible addition to my own business.
I share this to encourage you to reach out to others who can relate to your journey. Trust me, I get it – it’s not always the easiest to find those people.But I’ve discovered a few ways to connect with other entrepreneurs that I’d recommend you try:
Join an entrepreneurial-minded Facebook group (my I Heart My Lifers group is a great place to start, if I do say so myself!).
Is there an entrepreneur you admire who seems to be at a similar place as you in her biz? Reach out to her to offer the opportunity for a partnership of some sort. (Or just start by meeting up for coffee.)
Join a co-working group in your city – these are groups of entrepreneurs and/or remote workers who get together to work in the same space once in awhile – it’s a great way to overcome loneliness and make new connections!
Sign up for a group program or mastermind. (The ladies I’ve been vacationing with are women I met through a group program I was a part of!)
Bottom line – don’t be afraid to reach out. Entrepreneurship can be a lonely road in the beginning, and I’d be willing to bet that the person you reach out to will be both honored and eager to connect. (And if not, there are plenty of other fish in the entrepreneurial sea, so keep at it!)
There’s a world of amazing people at your fingertips who’d love to connect with you,lovely, so be willing to take that first step. You’ll be amazed at the impact that those connections can have on your life and biz down the road.
P.S. James and I are just about to start a brand new year-long mastermind with the one and only Brendon Burchard (he works with Oprah and Arianna Huffington!) in San Diego tomorrow. I can’t wait to share my biggest takeaways with you next week. Stay tuned…!