Take your business seriously.
Detaching your self-esteem from your salary doesn’t mean you shouldn’t care about money at all. In fact, wedding photographer Cassie Valente is grateful to “[her] parents for raising [her] the way they did… [with] an immensely strong money-focused mentality.”
Before quitting her corporate job, Valente listed all of her expenses, then asked herself, “How many weddings would I have to photograph at my current price point in order to just cover groceries and rent and emergency money?”
With this data in hand, she felt confident enough to try full-time photography for six months. Whether you want to quit your day job or just have a serious side gig, make sure you’ve done your homework: write a basic business plan, figure out a budget, save up living expenses, and have a backup/bailout option.
Sometimes spending money actually costs less in the long run than not spending money.
Sure, it costs time and money to hire and train an assistant, but the hours you spend invoicing or messing with your website is time you could have spent working with clients. (And earning money!) Nobody likes fees and taxes, and it can be tempting to take cash only, use personal payment systems like Venmo (which is against their terms of service), or charge your clients credit card fees (which is illegal in some states).
All this scheming could save you a little money, but could ultimately cost you growth potential and bigger money. (Or worse, land you in a costly audit or lawsuit.) And running your business under the table, which is an unfortunate necessity for some people, could end up creating a lot of fear.
For many people, fear of not having enough drives every action, from clipping coupons to hoarding grocery bags under the kitchen sink. There’s nothing inherently wrong with being thrifty, but fear of scarcity is a self-fulfilling prophecy: if you’re always afraid you won’t have enough, you could end up making decisions that limit your potential.
You can conquer (or at least manage) your fears by facing them head-on with data and knowledge to support you. If you want to grow your business in 2020, start by committing to an honest accounting of your income and expenses. With that knowledge, you can plan to raise your prices, develop new service or product offerings, or even quit your day job. The only way to get over limiting fears is to do the thing you’re afraid of and show yourself that it can be done.
Wishing you a fearless new year in business!