Reflections of an entrepreneur…so far

I’ve been asked a few times to speak to students considering a career in the fitness industry, and to an audience about being an entrepreneur,  and I thought I’d take the opportunity here to record some of the frequently asked questions.

My motivation…
I deeply feel the need for my work to be doing something that has a positive knock-on effect for humankind and the planet. I couldn’t be passionate about mass manufacturing and selling random plastic gadgets that serve no real purpose and will end up in landfill a year after purchase. I am extremely passionate about advocating active, thrilling lifestyles and creating positive social change. The health and fitness industry has incredible diversity and infinite opportunities for making ripple effects like this.

game changer
Some of the biggest lessons I’ve learnt in business to date…
(1) You can’t run a business, particularly a bricks and mortar one with a large team of employees and customers without encountering a fair share of legal issues! Accept its part and parcel of the job, deal with it and move on.
(2) Overnight business success is like a unicorn – it doesn’t exist. Maybe magic happens occasionally and there have been some stories of instant success, but for the most part success comes with persistence, asking lots of questions, being brave enough to try a lot of different things, being well informed, constantly educating yourself and, as an entrepreneur, be willing to do things that others aren’t.
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How I juggle being a mother and running multiple businesses…
It’s a never ending jigsaw puzzle – just when I think I’ve found a way to make all the pieces fit, my children change to a different stage in their life and I need to take the puzzle apart and figure out how to make it all fit again!
I am very deliberate in my decisions on how I spend my time.
My biggest advice is to be very clear on your understanding of opportunity cost. For example, what is the opportunity cost of ironing? Or, what do you do that that you don’t really need to do? How else could you use that time?
That’s actually a theme in one of my eBooks about making time for physical activity, which I consider to be an essential ingredient for a healthy life.
An acknowledgement to my mentor…
When I was 20 years old finishing my law degree, I became one of the youngest Judges’ Associates in the District Court, and my successful appointment to the role took me by surprise. I was one of those people dressed in a black legal gown sitting with the Judge at the front of the courtroom.  The Judge was a remarkable man and evolved into a valued mentor. He told me that he thought I could become one of the best Barrister’s in Sydney. I’m not sure I agree with that and I didn’t end up pursuing a career as a Barrister, however is unwavering confidence in my ability planted the seed that perhaps I really could be successful doing something I had previously never considered. Often (probably wrongly) I think our confidence in ourselves is much lower than others’ confidence in us. In my experience, confidence from others goes a very long way in pursuing our dreams and I will never forget the conviction the Judge had in my abilities and greatly thank him for that.
If I were speak to the younger me who was just starting out in business, what would I say?
Be braver, be bolder, speak up. Just because it hasn’t been done before, doesn’t mean that it can’t be done or shouldn’t be done. I love the concept of being a game changer.  The Thankyou group have done this brilliantly and I have utmost respect for them.
And if you want to do something, you need to be prepared to give it a good crack. Persevere with it and be objective in your decision making.
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My advice to others considering a career as an entrepreneur…
Do something that makes your heart sing. When you are working on something and you get in a zone of flow – you know that place where you think you could keep on working without stopping – that’s when you know you’ve the right thing.
Know however that if you choose to be an entrepreneur operating your own business, that thing that makes your heart sing will only be part of your work.  You will also need to do lots of things that you could possibly hate (for me, it’s bookkeeping!). Running a business is extremely multi-faceted and you need to ensure that everything that needs to be done, does get done. As your business expands, you may be in a position to outsource tasks, but there will always be crappy jobs that you’ve just got to do!
entrepreneur mindset

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