Just starting out? Be creative and resourceful.

Dear Shi, 
I’m just starting out in my interior designer business and have big goals to turn it into a big, well-known brand.  I want to become a leader in the industry but get stuck when I realize I don’t have the money, well-known contacts, or business know-how to be able to get there.  I get discouraged when I see the obstacles in front of me.  Where do I even start?  


Just Starting Out Shi Chen

Dear Isabelle, 
How exciting!  Dreaming big dreams with the intentions of becoming a leader to make a bigger impact is what lights up my soul (and hopefully yours)!  I love the phrase, “If your dreams don’t scare you, you’re not dreaming BIG enough.”  So keep dreaming, but let’s also get you unstuck so you can keep doing 

Just Starting Out Quote 2 Shi Chen

There will be obstacles along your entrepreneurial leadership journey, the BEST way around them is with a simple REFRAME.  Instead of focusing on what you DON’T HAVE, let’s focus on what you DO HAVE.  

Here are some examples:

Instead of thinking “I don’t have the money."
Let’s think: “How can I work with what I already have?”  “What can I do to earn the money that I need?  or “How can I provide value to others in order to fund my most important current expense? 

For example, starting off with a simple design package and selling it to people you know as you build up more connections can be a good place to start.  

Instead of thinking: “I don’t know any well-known contacts.”  
Let’s think: “Who do I already know that may benefit from what I have to offer?”  “Who’s something I look up to in the industry?  How can I help them and make a connection?”  
Who is someone in the industry that you admire?  Reach out and offer to help.  Or, find a business bestie, or accountability buddy by joining an online group or going to a local meetup.  

Instead of thinking: “I don’t have the business know-how.” 
Let’s think: “What do I know that I can apply to business?”  “What specifically do I need to learn, and what can I do or where can I go to learn it?”  
Experience is the best teacher.  How can you get out there and just start talking to people and offering what you what?  Business is one big experiment, so honor your own ideas, voice, trust your instincts and try to see what works and what doesn’t work.

Just Starting Out Shi Chen Quote 1
By using the power the the REFRAME, you turn your DON’Ts into DOs and operate from a much more creative and resourceful head space.  

You’ll get better results too because you’re more motivated to make it happen when you feel like you can do it.  When you reframe what you don’t have into what your do have, you’ll turn your obstacles into opportunities.   

Leadership is about stewardship and taking care of what you already have so you can multiply your resources and get even more in return.  

If you are faithful in the little, you can be faithful in the big, so start practicing NOW as if you’re already there. 

So, Isabelle.  There you go.  You already have everything within you to succeed, it’s just a matter of REFRAMING to focus on the positive so you can grow what you’ve got.  
If you found this letter helpful, please share it with your friends.  If you’d like more insight into turning your ideas into action so you can create a successful business and intentional life, then subscribe to the “Letters For Leaders” and receive your free “Vision Into Action” workbook.  

With Joy,