5 Things No One Told Me About Female Entrepreneurship
One of the things I've learned throughout my journey through female entrepreneurship is that there there is A TON of things no one told me about or prepared me for. Things like mind-games, mansplaining, how to schedule and more!
Today I am sitting down to talk all about them, along with a few pointers when jumping the ship into female entrepreneurship. (Which I truly believe everyone should do at some point in their lifetime!)
01 Comparison is a game. Play the game and you lose!
You've probably heard this time and time again (and I know we've all done it) but I am just here to reiterate it. STOP COMPARING YOURSELF TO OTHERS. I don't care if it is a clone of yourself or a twin, or however you want to spin it. You compare, you lose. This became a HUGE problem for me a while ago. Oh, what are they doing, who are they working with, how is their engagement percentage going up?! You want to know what happened next? I stopped creating as much. I started creating based on what was making people grow. I started losing my individualism because I was focused on the majority. The minute I separated myself from the game I started seeing a shift in my work life. I was so excited to shoot, I would spend all day creating/working with Bryce that I would forget to check Instagram (also forgetting to stalk) and I realized this is how I needed to work.
In addition to this I wanted to point out a new feature that Instagram holds that I think is important to soooo many people and it's a little thing called "MUTE" — if you feel yourself slowly falling down the path of being obsessively watching someone or that it is weighing on your own self-confidence. You can now mute accounts. It won't notify them, it won't cause tension, but it is a way to keep you from losing yourself to the (comparison) game. I highly recommend it.
02 It's all about perspective
Look at yourself and the growth you have done from the last 2 years. Now look at your idol, the person you look up to the most in your creative field. See how different the two mindsets are? Those mindsets are your perspectives and they can change a lot about your creative process. If I sit there for hours as I'm working like I need to be here, I need to be dong this, this is where I should be. I completely negate what I have done to get where I am, and that is not fair to myself. You have to allow yourself to be proud (not too proud) but enough that it motivates you to continue moving towards those idols (but those can't be everything either!)
Keep your perspectives (just like the comparison game in check) no one told me how much both of those things would weigh on my self esteem, my thoughts of my own work, and my productivity. I am here to tell you to start now, so you can have a grasp on it for the future! :)
03 Mansplaining is REAL!
Whew. This one can get me heated if I really start to think about it. MAN-SPLAINING. A man explaining something because he believes he is higher than you. Now you guys know I typically keep things pretty equal in regards to gender in my quotes and such. If it says "she" I say "they" because I truly believe anyone can rise up and chase their dreams, even though majority of my audience is female.
I first learned about this when Bryce & I were shooting a quick photo in Starbucks in Downtown Indianapolis. I noticed a man (mid 20's) starting at me while Bryce shot my photo. He made small comments here and there asking if we were shooting for a school project or as homework (typical) I noted that this was our job and that we were curating content for a brand. We decided to leave and as I stood up he asked for my follower number and engagment, and said it had to be above a certain level before he could get my business card (mind you I never asked) I told him I had 20k followers and was proud of an audience I had curated organically. But then he started telling me where I should be at and if I have 50k soon which in his mind I had to have soon then my numbers should be x. Then proceeded to say "I'll give you advice if you're willing to take it" Bryce is standing behind me just in pure shock of what this guy was saying to me and I was on a mission now. "Sure!" I said. Next thing I knew he was explaining to me how I needed to be following a guy named Gary Vaynerchuck (someone who has been a driving force for my business and personal growth for over 2 years prior to this conversation) and that he would try to "get me in on gigs" this continued for about 10 minutes telling me what I should be doing and why him being in school is the "right path" essentially saying mine wasn't. Shaking in anger that someone who didn't even know me and had the audacity to talk this way to me I simply said "well that's cool, noted" and walked out.
The next day he slid into my DM's trying to get my number and to go out with him. YUP. I'll leave that there.
04 Scheduling can weigh on your productivity
Whether or not you are someone who feels the need to make a schedule, when you start in on entrepreneurship to me it is a necessity. I begun to get overwhelmed with all of the ideas going through my head and things I wanted to do that I wasn't doing much of anything.
One day Bryce had me sit down and write out a list of everything in my head on my to-do list. I mean EVERYTHING. Then he started picking things from the list and adding them one at a time to a calendar. Slowly but surely I had a morning, afternoon, and evening plan build out where I started finishing 1-2 projects a day. A DAY! Ones I had been worrying about and planning for for way too long. If you don't feel like scheduling is your jam because trust me for me it's not. I like the creation, not the planning of the creation — I recommend having someone else who is good at it to sit down with you.
Another thing I curated (and will talk more about in an educational series coming soon) is having 3 different calendars. For each part of my business. It sounds crazy but I promise you it changed everything! Stay tuned for that!
05 You won't really get it until you do it. :/
One thing I realized about myself is that I can research, read, plan, write until the days end. I would spend so long trying to prepare myself for entrepreneurship that I wasn't doing. I wanted to have all the knowledge and know about every little thing, but — you can't.
You won't really get it until you do it. Every day I feel like there is some point where I say "oh I get it" so much about working for yourself is learning about yourself and learning along the way. I saw a quote my Junior year of high school when I would read business books at lunch that said "entrepreneurship is: someone who jumps off a cliff and builds a plane on the way down" that has stuck with me ever since and been a driving force is learning to love the unknown and realize that it is what makes entrepenruship, ENTREPRENEURSHIP!