Starting Up when Locked Down

As we all continue to muddle through this Covid restricted year it can be harder to get into gear to move forwards with our plans or ideas. Our brains are operating from a place of uncertainty and that can, understandably, make it even trickier than normal to take a leap of faith.

But what if this is an opportunity to try out something new? What if you've always wanted to set up your own business and now could be the perfect opportunity to give it a whirl? Well here would be my top tips on how to get going.

1. Allow time for yourself

Whether it's kids, pets, Zoom calls or Netflix binges our days still get filled with things no matter how locked down we are. Begin to ring-fence an amount of time for yourself every single day, start small with 15minutes, have a cup of tea, write down your thoughts and slowly increase the time you give yourself. This space can really give your brain time to just be calm and is especially important at the moment while we are surrounded by 24/7 news and updates.

2. Trial and Error

Most business owners will tell you (if they're being honest!) that they have made many mistakes on their way to making their business a reality. It's easy to start small with online marketplaces such as Etsy or Folksy, they make great platforms to try out a new product idea as they have big audience reach. You can then look to larger more customisable stores such as Shopify as your business grows.

3. Find your People

If you care about what you are making, or the service you are providing, people will connect with you. You need to share your ideas with others in order to find the customers who are the right match for you, yes that's right! You'll never please everyone but finding the people who love what you do and who will invest in you and your business can be the most rewarding experience. I have many 'customers' who have become great friends over the years and I love that they have stayed with me over my business journey. Use your social media channels to find your people!

4. Share What You Do

If people don't know, then how can they go right? You need to be you biggest supporter as you launch your new venture! Get on socials, be active, be visible, keep telling us what you do/make. Showcase your skills with great photographs, reels, stories etc. Ask pals if they will help you share your work amongst their own networks. Maybe create a collaboration with someone you admire to help raise your profiles together? You could approach some podcasts to see if you could do an appearance? Reach out, use your networks, be kind and be real.

5. Have a Plan

Now I'm not a huge one at sticking to plans, and I do admit to getting myself 'too busy' to pay too much attention to business planning all the time BUT I do make sure I set myself goals and that I review them regularly.

When you know where you'd like to end up it really can help in making decisions along the way. Sure, you'll make a few wrong turns, we all do, it's part of life and business, but if you have some milestones up ahead that you'd like to get to it can really help get you back on track if you are pulled too much off course. 

Have fun! I think with more of us realising we can work flexibly, remotely and with more choice in what we do then it's important that we snap up this opportunity to enjoy our working lives more than before. Setting up and running Bonnie Bling is such a fulfilling experience and now, ten years on, there's still new directions to take and new paths to head along.

How exciting!

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