When I was first starting my business, I hesitated to build my team, hire mentors, or reach out for help because it made me feel scared and weak. Then I realized – commitment doesn’t care how you feel.
A couple weeks ago, I did a Q&A in my Infinite Impact Challenge group, and I got a lot of really interesting questions that got me reflecting on how my life has changed since I started in business and the lessons I’ve learned along the way.
One of the questions I got that really hit home was what advice would I give to my former self?
At first, a LOT of ideas flooded my mind. If I could go back in time to talk to Marley 3 years ago, I would tell her to build a team sooner. Or hire mentors sooner… but here’s the thing: at that time, I had one huge fear standing in my way. If I went back in time right now and told myself to build out my team and stand on the shoulders of giants, I truly don’t think I would’ve listened.
I was afraid I couldn’t do it alone. T all my entrepreneurs, I bet you can understand and empathize with where I was coming from here. Entrepreneurship can feel so solitary and so lonely… but I felt like I needed to prove to myself that it was possible for me to build my business alone. If I couldn’t do it myself, I didn’t think I’d feel like a REAL entrepreneur.
In a way I am glad because it gave me space to make A LOT of mistakes. I fell down, got myself back up, fell down again, and eventually built out my dream team and hired mentors. If it didn’t happen this way I might now have this circle around me that means so much to me.
In fact, I’m pretty sure that independent way of thinking is what led me to becoming an entrepreneur in the first place. When I look back now, it seems so obvious that a 9-5 wasn’t right for me. It seems crazy that I was ever NOT seeking the life of an entrepreneur, because it feels like such a natural fit for my personality. As much as I’m glad to have let people in and eventually learned to stand on the shoulders of giants, I’m also glad for that laser-focused, independent version of me that pushed me towards my dreams.
Was I scared to hire a team? Absolutely. I felt like I was weak for asking for help. But here’s the thing: commitment doesn’t care how you feel. If you’re committed, it’s the deeds that are important – not the words or the feelings associated with them. And when building out my team the number one thing I was focused on was commitment. I needed to have people who would follow through and stay committed.
So ultimately, my response to “what advice would you give to my former self?” is… none. You have to go through mistakes and failure to realize your strength, skills, and expertise.
We all feel like we have to get to a certain level before we feel good enough and give ourselves permission to feel successful, but every now and then, you’ll look back and realize how much you know. Remember – all you have to do to be an expert is to know more than the person who’s asking or paying you. If you’ve ever seen or heard the Catch Me If You Can story, Frank Abagnale taught a university class by – in his words – “staying one chapter ahead”. That’s all you have to do – stay one chapter ahead, and see where that takes you.
Go ahead and ask your favorite entrepreneur or mentor how they got to where they are today, and I guarantee their answer won’t be “by having all the answers”. So my advice to you is to trust your commitment from the start – because commitment doesn’t care how you feel.