Being an entrepreneur takes sacrifice. You’re going to live the first few years struggling. You won’t have time for friends, family, or for yourself. That’s how it is because you need time to build your business. But once those few years are over and you leave your 9-5 job, you will feel amazing. You will have the freedom and the money that you’ve always wanted. Join Kendra Perry as she shares why you need to just hang on if you’re a brand-new entrepreneur. All your hustle and sacrifice is going to be worth it on the other side. Entrepreneurship is living a few years of your life like most people won’t so that you can spend the rest of your life like most people can’t.
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Pep Talk: Why You Need To Keep Going
In this episode, I’m going to share with you a recording from one of my coaching sessions inside Health Coach Accelerator, and this will be valuable for you if you’re feeling frustrated in your business right now. Maybe you’re feeling like this is way harder than I thought it was or you’re feeling like, “Is this even worth it? I should give up.”
I want to tell you that it’s very normal to feel this way at the beginning part of your business. When I say beginning, I usually mean the first year to three years. It’s a little bit different for everyone. Let’s be honest, building a business is hard, and if it were easy, wouldn’t everyone be doing it? However, they’re not. You have chosen a path that is much more difficult than the other path.
The other path is being a stable corporate job with a consistent paycheck, you’ve chosen the harder path, but the payoff is much higher, in my opinion. I’m going to share with you this little pep talk I did for my students inside HCA. I think you will find it very motivational, so let’s dive into it. The first thing I want to talk about is that I posted this quote in the group and I’m obsessed with it for some reason.
I can’t stop thinking about it because I love it and I think it’s so true. You guys may have seen that in the group, but if not, I’m going to read it out. The quote is anonymous and I don’t know who wrote this, but the quote is, “Entrepreneurship is living a few years of your life like most people won’t so that you can spend the rest of your life like most people can’t.”
I love it because it speaks to the sacrifice that we have to make in the first couple of years. It could be a year of sacrifice. It could be more. It depends on what pace we’re moving at and how long it takes us to get into a little bit of a flow. The first year especially. I always like to say that the first year in your business is f***ed because it’s hard.
It’s because you’re learning so many new things and doing something that is so different from anything that we’ve ever been socially conditioned to. Unless, of course, you grew up with entrepreneur parents, which a lot of us didn’t. My dad was an engineer and my mom was a teacher with standard jobs from 9:00 to 5:00.
They worked a lot. I had nannies growing up because they were gone a lot. That’s what we think we need to do. We need to have these 9:00 to 5:00 jobs, where we work a lot and don’t get much time. We can warrior sort of thing. When we go into entrepreneurship, it’s very different. There’s no one telling us what to do or when we have to get up in the morning, unless we have kids. I’m sure they’re telling you when you got to get up, but no one is running our workday and giving us a pat on the back when we do a good job besides ourselves and struggle.
I think that where a lot of the struggle comes with is because we want to know that we’re doing a good job. The only way to know that we’re doing a good job is through money or clients. When that’s not happening, we wonder, “Are we doing the right thing?” Maybe what we’re doing isn’t working or we’re not good at what we do because we run a business alone unless you have a business partner, but most of us are solo. We’re alone in our homes or offices. Our partners might be away at work all day, kids are away at school or whatever, and we’re alone and spinning our wheels.
It can be lonely in that sense. That’s why it’s amazing that you guys are in this community because we have each other to lean on. Definitely don’t forget about reaching out to each other for support, but there are a lot of sacrifices that go into the first few years and there is a lot of hustle that needs to happen.
I feel like hustle has gotten where people are like, “F**k the hustle. No hustle.” I don’t think that’s a good thing. I’m not someone who thinks you need to hustle. I think chronic hustle is a problem. Hustling at the expense of your health and your relationships is not good, but there are seasons of hustle in your business. The beginning is one of them, and you’ll go through other seasons of it, especially when you’re looking to scale like the jump from multiple 6 figures to 7 figures. It requires hustle because you have to redo your whole strategy.
You have to like, “There’s another big jump that happens there.” It depends. You might get to making $60,000 to $80,000 a month and be complete and happy with that. Maybe you’re happy to maintain and keep it at that level and you’re cool, but for some of you, you may have bigger goals. That’s fine.
If you don’t have big goals, that’s cool. If you do, that’s cool too. We all want something different. Some people want an empire and other people don’t. There is this hustle and sacrifice that happens in the first couple of years. I get frustrated when I see a lot of stuff where you should feel aligned and in flow.
I love that. I love to feel aligned and in flow, but you don’t get to start there. You can feel aligned in other ways, but a lot of hard work and sacrifice goes into the beginning of a business because there’s a lot of stuff that needs to get done. The thing I love about that quote is it speaks to the better thing than the other.
I don’t know if any of you guys ever did traditional. I think Justy went to college. You said you did a couple of years of college. I went to university for a degree and I’m sure some of you guys went to traditional schooling as well. If you have had that experience, you will probably remember how f***ed up it is.
You have to do so much and if anyone has ever been through college or university exams, it always feels like, “This is impossible. I have to do five exams. I have no time to study. I don’t see how it’s possible that I do all these exams I passed in that amount of time.” That’s usually what we feel like. That’s what I felt like. I felt like school was so intense and stressful, but I did it. Why did I do it? Because I thought there was something better on the other side. For my university degree, there wasn’t necessarily, but that’s the promise. That’s what we think. We think we do this. We sacrifice now.
We don’t go out as much with our friends. We don’t do all these other things as an acceleration for mental illness. I totally agree with that. It’s crazy, but we do it because there’s this promise of something better on the other side. That’s why I love this quote because it’s showing you you’re living a few lives that most people wouldn’t do. Most people need security. They don’t like taking risks. They want their paycheck and that stability. You have to live a couple of years, like 1 to 3 years, I would say it depends, without that stability. That’s hard and most people would never do it.
The fact that you’re even pursuing this path speaks to the person you are, what you want for yourself, and what you’re meant for because all of you guys are meant for amazing things. The fact that you’re in this program means that you’re meant for great things because people don’t pursue this path who want more for themselves.
Yes, there is sacrifice. That’s going to look different for all of us. That might look like not seeing our friends and family as much. It might look like working on a weekend, working in the evening, or getting up at 4:00 AM to work. It’s going to look a little bit different for all of us. My sacrifice was not seeing my friends as much and missing out on certain trips and fun things that I wanted to do. It meant working in the evenings sometimes. It meant picking up a lot of boring, odd jobs to pay the bills until I could make enough money on my own.
I’ve talked about trimming weed. I made a hash in someone’s garage for a month like a dirtbag, which was so shitty. It was the work that was available and that I could do and it paid the bills. I worked for FDN and Melissa Ramos. I worked as a practitioner in other people’s businesses until I could get things off the ground.
That was hard because it meant that there was a lot going on and a lot of balls in the air. If you can get past the first few years of sacrifice, what is on the other side is super worth it. Again, it’s living your life like most people can’t, but most people can never imagine how much freedom you can have.
People like my friends and family are amazed that I can do what I want when I want. I’m like, “It’s a Wednesday and I’m at the farmer’s market. It’s random two weeks in the fall and I’m on a trip.” I’m still working maybe a little bit on the side, but I can take my business on the road with me. I’m not constrained by the fact that I have to go to a job every day. I can run my business from anywhere so that gives you a lot of freedom. I don’t worry about money. These are all the things available to you on the other side of the sacrifice and the hustle phase you are currently in.
Stacy is not on right now and I can’t remember if it was on the call or in the group, but she had shared that she’d taken a month off because she was feeling down. She’d come to the realization that she was doing more marketing than she was coaching. What she’s passionate about is coaching and helping people, but she wasn’t doing that. She was spending all her time creating content marketing, and it is a harsh realization and nobody prepares you for this. I think that’s why it’s even harder because you’re given a lot of false promises.
I’m not putting down the educational institutions. It’s not what they do. Most of them don’t give business training and a lot of them aren’t going to be ever willing to give that because it’s not what they do. You’re sold the promise of, “I need to get this certification and then I’m going to be able to start a business.”
You come out of whatever education you did, it’s 100% unprepared to succeed unless you have a marketing background. Even at that, I can’t tell you how many corporate marketing people we’ve had come through this program and they’re like, “I know nothing about marketing.” It’s because it’s different. Corporate marketing, online business, and building a personal brand are not the same. You can have all the marketing experience in the corporate world and then you try to build a personal brand as a coach and it doesn’t translate.
It’s like a hard pill to swallow and I wish that people or someone would tell you. For example, I have this girlfriend and she’s doing a health coaching certification program right now and we’re close. I let her know and I’m like, “By the way, you’re going to do that, but you’re still going to need business training, so you should factor that into your budget.”
She was like, “Great to know.” She ended up going for a certification program that was a little bit cheaper and more affordable so that she could put money aside to hopefully come to this program, but if not for this program, she’ll go into some other business coaching program. It’s the shock of that realization that you feel like, “No one told me this. What the hell? I didn’t know I was a marketer.
I don’t want to be a marketer. Now, what am I going to do?” In the beginning, obviously, there’s a lot more weight on being the marketer. That’s the way it is because you can’t start a business and have clients, but the balance shifts and it will shift if you stick with it. It shifts to the point where you get to do the fun stuff more than you do the marketing stuff. At some point, you can have someone else that does all that stuff for you. You need to show up on video, create your content, or whatever. Someone can distribute it. They can repurpose it or that sort of thing.
You can get a lot of help. Know that the balance shifts and you’re in the trenches right now. This is the hardest time in your business and it’s okay. Remember the thing that’s on the other side of this and connect back to those why’s. That’s selfish why of, “What do I want for my life? What am I meant for? What am I meant to do? What’s my legacy? What impact am I meant to have on this planet?”
Anything that is worth it in life is never free and easy. If you’re up for it, as you wade through the trenches, hustle, and hard times, a lot of growth can happen. That’s where all the growth happens. Growth doesn’t happen from the easy times. It happens from hard times. Entrepreneurship pushes you to be a better version of yourself, to learn about yourself, and to evolve personal evolution.
That’s a beautiful thing, but personal evolution never comes from ease and comfort. Lander was like, “I need to hear this now. Thank you. I’m all in tears because these last months have been trying to say the least. I’m back working at my family’s restaurant so I can make ends meet and continue on this path.”
There’s nothing wrong with having a part-time job. I had one. I didn’t start my business full-time. I was working for people for the first three years of my business. I was working these wee jobs for my friends. I was working for FDN and in other people’s businesses as a practitioner. I was thinking I was even the meat girl. I used to buy a whole cow and then I’d divvy up all the cuts into a $200 box and I would sell it with delivery. I’d be driving around town with my car full of meat delivering meat to people. I got to figure out what to do and what to make it work.
What I will say, Lander, is you’re making some amazing progress. You’ve gotten clients and you haven’t even been at this for that long. You’re almost there. It’s a great thing that you’re working for your family’s restaurant because it’s something to pay the bills. Take off the financial stress. It’s hard to go full-time in your business when you’re new without something to support you because it does take time to make a consistent income. I remember and this is about a year and a half into my business, I started dating Ryan, my partner. We’ve been dating for maybe 6, 7, or 8 months.
I remember we were gardening and I started melting down. It was the first time I cried in front of him, the first of many times to come, but I broke down and I started crying and I said, “My business is failing. I feel like a failure. I’m not getting clients,” because it had been a while since I’d gotten clients.
I felt so defeated. The attitude that I always have and the reason that I made it is because I was willing to do whatever it took. Giving up was never an option for me. I knew what I wanted. I knew I didn’t fit in to the corporate world or the 9:00 to 5:00. I’ve never had a traditional job. I always felt like a square peg trying to fit into a round hole. I didn’t belong there. I don’t think you guys belong there, either.
Know that you’re on the right path and there is sacrifice. Maybe that’s working at your family’s restaurant right now and I think that’s beautiful. That’s great. It’s amazing that you have that and you don’t need a ton of time to build up a business. I was working probably 15 to 20 hours a week for FDN. I only had fifteen hours a week to work on my business. Sometimes 10 and sometimes I’d get 20, but it was enough time.
As soon as I quit FDN, I had my first $10,000 per month because it opened up the space to focus on. By then, I knew more about what I was doing. Allendria, especially and for anyone else who’s doing that, it’s not a failure. It doesn’t mean anything about you. There’s no shame in working for your family’s restaurant or some job.
I’m speaking with someone on my Instagram DMs about this and they’re like, “I took on this other job.” I can’t remember what it was, but she’s like, “I haven’t even told my husband or my family because I feel ashamed because my business isn’t working.” There’s no shame in that. We’re all surviving and doing our best and it doesn’t come easy.
I think what we see when we look at other experts and influencers online is we see the other side. We don’t see them in the trenches because when they’re in the trenches, their presence isn’t out there. We don’t typically see them. We see everyone on the other side, which makes it look easy and awesome, but if you speak with any entrepreneur, there’s always been a lot of sacrifice, hard times, and humbling times that went into the time before.
It’s very hard to shine when you feel like you’re trying to crawl up out of a grave. Anything to make the climb out easier is worth it. Take the pressure off. I wasn’t even able to officially start my business until I got a part-time job. I graduated from FDN in 2013 in the spring and I took people on the side. I was taking people on the weekends, but I was still working in forestry, which is a 50-hour week job through the summer and it was exhausting.
You then get laid off in the fall and then you collect unemployment because you get laid off and then you get your job back again in the spring. On unemployment, I was making $1,600 a month. Once you start making your own money, you can’t collect unemployment anymore. I was like, “How do I go from making $1,600 a month, which is paying my bills, to replacing that every month?” That felt super crazy.
I was spinning my wheels over the whole winter. I was working on my business, making freebies, working on my website, doing things, putting it out there, and taking clients for cash, but I didn’t know how I could do it. When I saw the FDN job posting, I decided I was going to get it and I did. The day I got that job, I stopped filling out my unemployment reports and that was the end of that. Know that you need to do what you can and there is something better on the other side if you’re willing and if you’re up for it. I hope that was motivational.