Overcoming your fears is never an easy feat, but when there is a community of others to support you along the way, those fears often seem much more manageable and, oftentimes, beatable. Sara Davidson understood this concept when it came to launching a business and decided to help fellow female entrepreneurs get over their fears, transforming them into profitable business owners by starting Hello Fearless, a biz school for biz ladies. Today Sara takes us through her career journey and shares the many lessons she learned along the way. –Stephanie
Read the full interview after the post…
Why did you decide to start your own business?
I wanted to wake up every day being wildly excited about what I’m doing and the impact that I’m making in the world. I wanted the freedom to live the way that I want to live. And what I realized is that I could build a business based on my passions and experiences.
When you first decided to start your own business, how did you define what your business would be?
With my first business, oftentimes I didn’t know what I was doing. I didn’t feel supported, I didn’t have mentors or other people to turn to for help. When I started to connect with women all around the world, I realized that this was a common problem among ambitious women, which is where the idea of Hello Fearless was born.
Hello Fearless is the School for Female Entrepreneurs, where we teach women exactly how to start and grow profitable companies, but in a way that it is 100% aligned with who they are, the impact they want to create in the world, and the life that they want to live. And so we do that by partnering with the world’s leading organizations, experts and coaches to leverage their genius to produce proven, online education, resources and support for these women. What sets us a little bit apart is that we not only focus on providing the key foundational pieces that they need to focus on their business, but we also focus on the personal growth of the entrepreneur to figure out who are they, what are their strengths and weaknesses, what do they want out of life, and how do they overcome fears so that they can unleash their full potential and truly create businesses and lives that they are obsessed with.
What was the best piece of business advice you were given when you were starting off?
Trust the process, and enjoy the journey. What I mean by that is you shouldn’t get frustrated about where you are and compare yourself to other people who may be “more successful.” I learned very early on that you have nothing to lose by taking risks. It’s natural to doubt yourself, and at times, to contemplate or question whether you’re making the right moves. You have to be patient, because making your dream a reality takes time, and if you don’t enjoy the “building” part of it, then it’s going to feel twice as long. Be thankful for where you are, and know that this is exactly where you’re supposed to be. The key is to take action, to make big steps towards your dream every single day, to celebrate all the little wins and to fully enjoy the entire process of building a business. Because it’s not the destination that matters, it’s the journey in building your dream.
What was the most difficult part of starting your business?
Overcoming your fears and winning the mind game. It’s very easy to listen to other thoughts or fears that live in your mind on whether or not your dreams are even possible. And if you listen to them, it can paralyze you from taking action and making things happen. So once you get a fearless mindset and truly believe with all your heart that you can have it all – literally, everything you want out of business and life, and then some – you become unstoppable, and magical things start to happen.
Can you name the biggest lesson you’ve learned in running a business?
You can’t think of your business and life separately, they are completely intertwined. If any area of your life is suffering, it 100% impacts your business. You have to take a look at your life holistically, because the success of your business is entirely dependent upon your relationships, health and happiness as a person.
Can you name a moment of failure in your business experiences?
I don’t know if I would necessarily call this a failure, but I’ve definitely had moments of weakness where I doubted myself or considered giving up, or I’ve made decisions based out of fear, which tend to not work out as initially planned. But our company and I fundamentally don’t believe in failures, because every seemingly “bad” thing always ends up being a good thing in the end. What’s most important is to have a perspective that everything is a gift and an incredible learning opportunity.
What has been the biggest sacrifice you’ve made in starting your business?
Both my cofounder and I have had to cut back on certain amenities and things because we’re currently investing all of our money and time into our business. We realize it’s short-term loss for longterm gain, and you’d be surprised that all these things that you “had to have” could never make you as happy as building your dream and watching it come to life.
Can you name your greatest success in your business experiences?
Our biggest success to date is when women reach out to us and tell us how much Hello Fearless has impacted/changed their lives, because at the end of the day, that’s all that matters.
What business books/resources (if any) would you recommend to someone starting a creative business of their own?
The Big Leap, by Gay Hendricks – this book showed me in my first business that I wasn’t truly existing in my Zone of Genius and wasn’t building a business that was completely aligned with who I am, what I’m good at, and what I want to do.
The Desire Map, by Danielle LaPorte – this book taught me how to get really clear on how I wanted to feel in all areas of my life and my business, and helped me manifest opportunities that made me happy and fulfilled.
In your opinion, what are the top three things someone should consider before starting their own business?
Why are you starting your business? – Being grounded in who you are and your motivations behind your new venture can make or break you when the pressure gets tough. Your big WHY is the motivating reason, or the “driver,” for why you get up every day to do what you do. It’s your reminder for why you decide to take risks for a bigger purpose or mission that you have. Do you want to provide a better life for your family? Do you want to change people’s lives by offering your unique product or service? Most people understand their “what” (their business idea, product or service) or their “how” (their unique competitive advantage, marketing/distribution, etc.), but forget the big WHY. Once you get to the root of it, you become unstoppable because you remember your unbelievable motivation for creating your business.
Do you have a solid support system? – Not just friends and family who are able to root you on, but a community who can understand what you’re going through, and mentors who can help guide you when you get stuck. Entrepreneurship is impossible to go through alone, and it’s so important that you have people around you that you trust and admire. In fact, research has proven that mentorship and support is key for longterm entrepreneurial success, so it’s time to stop trying to do it alone, and start asking for help.
Are you ready for the craziest time of your life? – Entrepreneurship isn’t easy, but with the right mindset and a positive attitude you will be surprised where your journey will take you. Plus, it’s so much fun and so, so rewarding.