By Alka Chandiramani

Embarking on a new venture is always daunting, and setting up a business can be a rollercoaster ride. New York Times bestselling author, Dr. Brene Brown, summarizes the value of courage and vulnerability as the key to wholehearted living, and starting a business pushes the realm of vulnerability to a certain degree. She reiterates that this is especially true of people who rumble with failure. “These are people who choose courage over comfort, accountability over blame, and are able to embed learnings from failures into their lives”. The gnawing questions that can surface unconsciously could be: What if my idea is not feasible? What if it doesn’t work? How will I overcome possible roadblocks?

Setting up any business is like climbing up a mountain without a clear visibility of the summit; it is more than just taking that leap of faith with determination and confidence. The ability to take risks in adverse situations and pure perseverance is paramount. The emotional stress can be mitigated, though, by having a circle of accountability partners and/or a coach during the journey, particularly ones that can be called upon when the going gets rough.

One of the principle factors in preventing your own stress is taking the steps to design a well-researched business plan. Some of the key components to evaluate are:

  • Understanding the phases of starting your business: Where you are and what you hope to accomplish?
  • Identifying your vision, mission statement and the value proposition of your business
  • Conducting a SWOT analysis
  • Identifying your target market/customers
  • Researching business registration regulations in a specific country before the assignment
  • Filing accounting, taxation and all the necessary formalities and/or documentation
  • Connecting with the appropriate business partners
  • Understanding who your competitors are
  • Establishing branding, social media, outreach and website (where appropriate)
  • Investigating angel investors and/or start-up grants available
  • Setting key business goals in the first 90 days/six months/first year
  • Creating a SMART action plan forward

I recently read that positive emotions broaden our sense of possibilities and open our mind, which allows us to build new skills and resources that can provide value in other areas of life. Negative emotions, however, do the opposite. Why? Because building skills for future use is irrelevant when there is immediate threat or danger. What does this mean for us when we undertake anything new in life?

It is of utmost importance to take the time to pause and reflect on our inner self-limiting beliefs. This, in turn, can enhance our state of being emotionally, physically and mentally bringing our adventure to fruition, without being overwhelmed by the overarching question: If not now, when?