Making the jump & following your idea

I’ve been asked a lot of times, what convinced me to ‘jump ship’? Meaning, why did I leave my well paid, executive job running an ad agency to start my own business, struggle with cash flow and live month to month? Well, I didn’t quite see it that why when I wanted to ‘jump ship’ but to be honest, as hard as it is running my own business, I don’t think I’d have it any other way.

I had my idea for Habitots for many years and worked of various iterations of the business plan, tweaking and adjusting the idea several times. The yearning to ‘own my own business’ never died despite speaking to other business owners to get reality checks, hearing about bankruptcy stories and issues relating to cash flow. The thing that never died was my creativity that was dying to get out.

I never thought of myself as creative or ‘a creative’ as they say in ad land. When someone introduced me as a ‘creative entrepreneur’ recently, I nearly spat my coffee out. But I guess, she was right. I am a creative entrepreneur and looking back now, that’s what was yearning to get out, when I was pounding the pavement working at the ad agency.

I’ve always been a risk-taker, the 4th child who always had something to prove. I’ve always also had lots of ideas. And I’m impatient. When I come up with one, I want to see it happen. This is a good thing in the land of the entrepreneur, because so many people talk about ideas but never actually follow through with them. I’m not afraid to jot the idea down, research it a bit and give it a go. I suppose that’s what’s got me here. I had an idea, eventually found the right timing to ‘jump ship’ (more about that later) and gave it a go.

I encourage people with ideas to start them, write them down on a piece of paper, in Evernote, or in a journal. Then start building it. Don’t worry about the finer details – register the URL, start building a website (yes, YOU can build a website…I’ve built quite a few now), make or get a logo made and so on. Just stop thinking about your idea and start building it. It will be different in 3 months but that’s the whole point. You’ll see that some parts of your idea were great in principle but not in practice. You’ll adjust, you’ll see new opportunities and you’ll just keep going.

I too am adjusting, pivoting, trying new things every day. It’s scary, fun and energising at the same time but at least we’re giving it a go, right?!

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