It’s 8 months since you resigned from your 9am-5pm job because you couldn’t cope with its demands; now you are more worried because you assumed that by now, you should have gotten a new job. I mean…everyone knows you are really good at what you do.

Suddenly it occurred to you that all these while, you have been talking about this great business idea you have which you’ve never worked on.  Rather than just continue dreaming of how many lives this idea could impact, money to be made from it or even going as far as dreaming of the day you would open up different branches of your store in various locations why don’t you begin to act.

There is a popular saying that goes ‘the only obstacle between you and your dream is action‘ talking alone won’t help you realise or achieve your dream. It pays to put in work into something you really want instead of only speaking about it.

But it is also important to know that there are several things you should put in place in other to have a solid foundation for that business idea you have been nurturing. This would help to pave the way and make the road a bit smoother. There are also some pitfalls and potholes along the way, and being aware of them in advance will allow you to travel past them with greater ease.

First, Assess Your Goals

There are many good reasons for wanting to be your own boss, but be aware that it is hard work, and becoming a successful entrepreneur takes discipline and perseverance. If you want more freedom, or the flexibility to balance home and professional responsibilities, freelancing may be attractive. It is difficult though and it requires planning. Both sides of your life may need some adjustment to make it work.

You are likely to need the support of family and friends, even if it’s only in the emotional realm. Be certain to obtain all proper permits, and comply with legal requirements. Open a business bank account and consider consulting a tax adviser. Lastly, you will need the financial resources to provide for yourself in the beginning stages. It becomes a much easier task if you have amassed startup capital and if you have the necessary credit rating and financial stability to carry you and your new business forward.

Most importantly, do you have a plan?

Define Your Goals, Make a Plan

It has been stated that no business succeeds without a dream. On the other hand, no business succeeds with only a dream.

Take the time and effort to define realistic goals. Write out your mission and objectives, chart logical steps and methods, and draft at least a preliminary timeline. You need to have benchmarks along the path and you need to plan for specific actions at certain mileposts.

Try not to overthink the plan. It is also vital that you set it in motion, but remember that no points are written in stone; periodically reassessing your methods as well as your goals is part of the business.

Ensure Financial Health

Recognise that a business is a continuum of effort. “Overnight success” is rare. There will likely be detours and roadblocks to traverse along the way. You can smooth the way by getting your personal credit standing in order before proceeding to launch your business enterprise. Make no mistake: As a sole proprietor or an entrepreneur, your personal credit report is of prime importance.

An impeccable credit rating may contribute more to your initial business success than any other single factor. If you have access to financing, and your personal affairs demonstrate an understanding of the need to manage debt, repay loans and monitor finances, you are a step ahead.

Establish Good Habits

Eradicating bad habits from your life will help to improve your productivity, creative thinking and, more importantly, your work-life balance and mental health. Once you’ve battled out your bad habits, it’s time to create some good habits that will catapult you onto the road to success. But first, you must decide what success means to you. Examples of good habits include being goal oriented, result driven, health conscious, honesty and self-disciplined.

If you are persistent in your approach, starting your own business can be extremely fulfilling and profitable.

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