Overcoming the fears that hold us back.
Earlier we have put forth our arguments on why every person with one source of income (employment income) should start a side business, whilst early in their financially growing years.
What are the fears that hold most of us back from starting a side business? Fears that actually freeze us, till we do not even try to search for solutions.
I believe that these fears should be listed and torn to shreds. Then the potential of so many wage earners to start and to excel in their side businesses can be “defrosted and unleashed”.
Coming back to these fears. The main culprits (I really think that it would be more of a combination), would be:
a) No idea what side business to do
This should rank up there as one of the principal fears, or maybe mental block to our starting. Many of us simply cannot formulate an idea of what we should do as a side business. This is indeed surprising, given the tremendous number of resources, (many of them free), giving ideas on what we can do to create another source of income. Websites such as ,
and blogs such as
Dane Carlson’s Business Opportunities WebLog, Yaro Starak’s Entrepreneur’s Journey, Brian Armstrong’s blog on how to get out of the 9 – 5 grind, Dmitry Davydov’s Uncommon Business Ideas that Work are,
but the tip of an iceberg of highly relevant and most useful resources when it comes to getting advise on what businesses we can do.
In fact, when we read some of the success stories, very often, a spark will go off in our head, saying, “hey, I could have done that!”
Well, the difference is we did not.
b) Lack of Capital
This is another biggie. Thinking of a business, side or otherwise, often conjures pictures of the boss needing oodles of money to set up and run the business. Since we are just starting off in our financial lives, and not having oodles of money, the wish or desire to start the side business just dies off.
c) How do I survive without my regular salary
It is immediately assumed that we have to leave our present jobs and work full time. Without the safety net of the employment salary to pay our daily and monthly bills, we just tune out.
We end up saying to ourselves, “once I have $XXXXXX, I’ll start this business of XXXXXX.” And never ever start.
How do we overcome these fears?
Just face them and eliminate them!
All we have to do is to find a side business that :-
i) Is based on a doable idea that we think up or even copy from someone else who has done it successfully, (I am certainly not talking about copyright violations here). Examples of these would be a successful side business done by someone else in another neighbourhood, State or Country, which we can emulate.
ii) Is based on skills (whether through our hobbies or formal training) that we already have.
iii) Has a demand in the area where we are.
iv) Can be done in the evenings or weekends when we are free, hence not affecting our day jobs.
v) Needs little capital.
Harrison in his Journey to Financial Freedom asks us bluntly if we have what it takes to start a side business. Whilst he acknowledges that external factors like capital etc., may be issues, the key requirements are all internal. He lists these as energy, desire, willingness to learn and take action, self discipline, a business plan, and family support.
The history of personal financial management is filled with success stories of people who started off as gardeners, newspaper boys, drivers, tuition teachers, baby sitters, dog walkers, cooks, handymen, electronics equipment repairers, etc. All of which can be side businesses that fit the requirements listed above.
Can’t we set up a side business along these lines, and make it our first step to diversifying our employment income?
And to close off this post, please read this inspiring story about “How to build a four million dollar business with a hundred bucks”.