And why you can’t rush entrepreneurship!
Sydney came to me at the start of 2022, and we spent a large part of the year together, meeting nearly weekly. During that time I have seen her shed a lot of her self-doubts, confusion and deep-rooted stories from her past. Sydney is a vocal coach in Austin, Texas, and a very capable, pro-active person, and she was ready to grow her vocal coaching business NOW.
She wanted to leave her teaching job at the local school, attract better clients, and launch an online course. She had tons of ideas, and even more energy, only to discover there was still quite a bit of work and personal development to be done before getting to the next level.
Sydney’s case is a prime example of how many of us creative entrepreneurs start out; we can’t wait to leave our 9-5 jobs, we feel energised and ready to go fully into our business, only to find out it is not that easy, and it actually takes some time to build a solid foundation, structure and find a pace that feels sustainable.
Sydney, in the end, found a happy balance by easing into entrepreneurship, and combining a part-time job (within her vocal coaching niche!) with her own business venture. That way, the financial pressure is alleviated while building her new coaching business, while having enough time to grow her online audience and client base for her 1:1 work. No doubt, that online course will come, and she will be flying when the time is ready.
Here is how she experience working with me, in her own words:
How would you describe your situation before we started working together?
Before I started working with Nina I was feeling frazzled – my creative teaching business was a year and a half old with enough momentum to make me believe it was worth it to keep building, but I felt like I had no plan or structure for how to keep it moving in a tangible way.
With a thousand ideas and questions running through my head, I wanted to seek out a business coach who could appreciate my creative brain and help me find a holistic approach to managing/growing my work. When I found Nina’s website I thought to myself, “Here’s a woman who feels human, relatable, and is also a creative go-getter! She’s leading from the reality of her own creative successes as well as losses – I’d love to see what I could learn from her experience.”
What were the biggest light bulb moments during the 6-months programme?
Having the accountability and partnership of a coach helped me to really face down some of my biggest fears! Committing to face your own imposter syndrome on a regular basis may not sound fun at all, but you learn to actively deal with it and build a resilience towards it.
Now that I can more clearly see the root of some of the biggest obstacles that hold me back, I feel more equipped to do the work necessary to move through them and fulfill the true purpose of my creative work.
How would you describe your situation now? What are the biggest takings from working with me as a coach?
I feel grounded in a very peaceful way – I’ve learned to acknowledge where I was a bit too ahead of myself and to be more patient with the process of building a business that makes sense for where I’m at and for where I’m heading.
Building a business requires taking action while remaining open to change, and I often struggle with where to spend my energy. Nina helped me recognize where I need to allow myself to carry things more lightly and courageously try things out, rather than hyper-analyze every decision I make.
What would your advice be to other new entrepreneurs who are trying to grow their creative business?
Finding the balance between being patient with yourself while also being proactive in your business can be tough. In the beginning, it might feel like a tug of war with yourself; one moment you’re bursting with energy and ideas, ready to connect with your audience and share your business with the world – the next moment you want to hide in a hole and not be responsible for being/doing anything interesting or creative at all.
It takes time to find your personal capacity as a creative business owner – how your strengths and weaknesses will co-exist together in what you’re building and what you need to sustain both yourself and your business in a healthy way. There is no one-size-fits-all method. But if there was, would we creatives really want that anyway? The juice is in the journey – enjoy it!
Check out Sydney’s online voice lessons here: www.singingwithsydney.com