1. The hardships:
I experienced quite a few. There were no guidelines, offering advice or telling me what to do, step by step. So I had to figure it out.
That was very hard to figure out where to start. So I just jumped in and decided to start. Another obstacle was connecting with established business owners. They did not want to help offer tips or give any information. Once I got started I was able to connect with one Woman from Chicago,she gave me valuable information and resources and she was very helpful. I’m still connected to her. It’s a scary & exciting experience starting out all on your own, and I was the happiest I’d been in several years and some people didn’t like that. It’s isolating; trying to launch something great. It took a lot of hours in front of the computer and a lot of time spent alone. I couldn’t share what I was building, until I was done. I had to find encouragement, hope, joy within myself and what I was creating. That’s what motivated me to keep going.
2. Support system I had a small support system, mostly because I didn’t tell anyone what I was building. I had three co-workers (non-black) who gave me advice, critiqued my writing and helped me fix some grammatical errors in my website. I’d look at the site so long, I couldn’t see the mistakes. They gave me choices of what company I could use to host my website, how to get my tax ID, etc.
Once I launched my business one of my friends was supportive and a lot of my family members were. Then I started trying to connect with other business owners to get moral support. I found connecting with Women from California, South Carolina, Charlotte, New York and Georgia very helpful.
3. Time line: It took me three weeks to get everything ready. I personally recommend taking more time. I created a launch date without looking at the calendar and boxed myself in. It was a lot of sleepless nights but it was worth it.
4. Giving up; I didn’t think of giving up, but so many times I thought my idea want going to work out. I felt very silly for wanting to create something great. I had to fight against the negative voices in my head that were telling me “this is dumb” or “no one is going to buy your stuff”. That was difficult. And it’s scary to have an online launch date and wonder if ANYONE is going to buy your products.I have had the thought of just selling it all and letting go, because it’s a scary journey at times. Giving up would prevent me from seeing what my business can become.