Be stress free and start your own business or not?

Last week’s blog on retirement brought in many comments with people writing to tell me that they were thinking of starting their own small business.

In 1987, I established my stress management and counselling consultancy – and for me it was the right decision.   However, being one’s own boss requires a specific mindset plus a commitment that is different from working for someone else within a corporate environment.

What it takes to start

Before embarking on a self-employed career, you need to give consideration as to whether you are really suited to what will initially be a 24 hour job.  A majority of people would rather work alongside others rather than being an entrepreneur, working all hours and having to make all the decisions.  Going ‘solo’ is not right for everyone and it is important that you find out at the early stage before you put time, effort and finance into your new career. Continue reading

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Learn How to Manage Your Anger

How many times do you feel angry but don’t know why?  How often do
you become aggressive and say things you don’t really mean, and then feel upset and guilty afterwards?  Similar events happen to most of us, at some time, and we fail to understand the reasons.

Very often, the answer has to do with excessive pressure that has caused you stress, which has turned to anger as you realise that you appear to have lost control of the situation. Then you take that anger and frustration out on others around you.  Sometimes that may be your family, or if at
work, your colleagues

Low self-esteem, in addition to stress, can also be at the heart of an angry outburst.  You may not identify this factor and it is only when you start to suffer the consequences of that low self-worth that you may start take a close look at the root cause within yourself. Continue reading

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International Women’s Day: Celebrating Women’s Power

Today, is International Women’s Day, and in looking at their website, it is interesting to see so many international events taking place, ranging from large, national conferences to small informal ‘get-togethers’.  However, the message is the same which in the words of Jude Kelly, Artistic Director is: “To celebrate the formidable power of women to make change happen, to remind us of our history, to draw attention to injustice and to enjoy each other’s company as we set out to achieve a fairer world”.

Tales from South Africa

This made me think about all the special women that I have met over the past year.  I visit South Africa at least once a year and there I work with women who are budding entrepreneurs.  These are women who have not usually received a formal education, but still want to create and grow their own businesses so that they can send their children to school, so that they can be independent and not have to sit on street corners, begging for money.  I have met women who are so completely focused in their endeavours that it puts many of us to shame.  They have a strength and determination of which many of us can only dream.  They have
no cars or large houses but their township homes in which I stay are spotlessly clean and tidy and I can only stand back in amazement at their resilience and fortitude.  Many of these women are single and don’t have the support of a man in the home and yet they survive in bringing up their children.  However, what they do lack are the marketing skills to promote their small businesses and this is what I offer to them through my 1:1 coaching programmes.  Some of the skills are specific such as helping them to write their own business cards and business plans, but other skills are those that come from encouragement and motivation. Continue reading

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