My first business was a disaster. I was nerve-wracked and exhausted. My friends stopped reaching out to me as I would never respond – I was ‘the busy business owner’, right? It was supposed to be my last year at the university, but I couldn’t make it. I had to postpone my graduation, as I couldn’t even make it to the lectures, not to mention researching for my dissertation. At some point, I wasn't even sure if I was going to make it at all. How did wasting five years of my life feel back then? Pretty awful.
I put all my money into the business, and I was absolutely petrified of losing it. Money means a lot when you are 24, especially if you were raised with a belief of not having enough of it and the perspective of not being able to break that paradigm. Other people’s money was at stake as well - and you don't want to lose other people's money. The vision of failure was haunting me every day. On top of it, I was being intimidated and threatened at that time - not everyone wanted me to succeed.
My mom was diagnosed with cancer.
For many reasons, I was so scared that I didn’t want to go full steam. I decided to do everything myself. I served clients every day. I was the sales guy and the marketer. I managed inventory, I swiped the floors and cleaned the toilets. I organized workshops. I was angry with everything and everyone.
One day my mom stopped by to cheer me up (who was supposed to be cheering up whom?!), so I told her that I wanted to quit – no matter the debt and consequences (the fact of being intimidated wasn't helping at all). She grabbed my shoulders firmly and said:
‘You are not going anywhere. You will finish what you started, and you will find the way out when the time is right'. She was serious as never before. I had no other choice than to listen.
I started asking for help, knocking at many doors and allowed more opportunities to come to me through the same route. People wanted to support me. I found interns, recruited dietitians, partnered with personal trainers and fitness clubs. I learned how to turn the negative thoughts and emotions into neutral ones so that I could focus and function properly. I kept going.
One year later, I exited the business and started a new chapter in my life.
Did I make a sh** tone of money that allowed me not to work anymore in my life – like every other entrepreneur wishes? No.
Did I learn something? Absolutely.
1. Don’t quit halfway through.
2. Ask for the support, and it will be given.
3. Have faith that will brighten up your darkest days.
4. Take care of yourself first – only then you can take care of others.
5. Find a way to release negative emotions. Stay neutral; don't let the emotions take over.
I won the fight with myself and turned the biggest 'failure to be' into not only a learning experience but a pleased ending. I refused to give up and quit halfway through.
Ps. My mom won her fight as well:)