A man without a smiling face must not open a shop

This is so true. If you’re in the right frame of mind and if your outlook is positive; when customers come along your personality radiates, and a potential client on the end of the phone will be more likely to hire you than if you’re feeling negative. Your frame of mind will influence the words you choose, maybe even so subtly you won’t notice yourself, but people will get either a positive or negative vibe from you depending on how you feel.

On the other hand, during those times when you are feeling down on your luck; appearing upbeat can be exhausting. If you have a good business idea and if you really believe in yourself, your tenacity will get you through the tough times. Persevere. Don’t give up. Rest well and do all of the healthy stuff, and it’ll help you stay on top form.

Don’t compare yourself to others.

Starting a business with very little or no budget (like I have), can be tough. When you scroll through Instagram accounts and see the never-ending, glossy images others are posting, it can seem like they have an unlimited budget, but comparing your business to theirs only makes you feel bad. It’s just not productive.

Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.

Arthur Ashe


This quote is one I’ve started to live by. My interpretation is that if I work as hard as I can, with all the resources available to me, ticking off my goals as I go, then I’ll succeed. If your ideas are good and you have the talent, that will shine through. You’ve just got to have the determination to keep going.

There’s free stuff out there, and a lot of it’s good.

I did a free online business course with Future Learn that helped with my business plan. It took me a while; I used to study on the long commute I took into the city, but with time (and earphones to block out the hordes), I finished the six-part course, buzzing with plans and ideas that have helped shape my business.

The Google Digital Garage has been worth its weight in gold to me. Tons of free business advice and courses that I imagine if I’d had to pay for would have cost me my life savings. If there’s a Digital Garage nearby that you can actually visit, I would really encourage you to go and milk it for all it’s worth.

As a creative business, there are many design based podcasts you can turn to for help, but the one I find most valuable is The Futur Podcast for its honest and inspiring advice.

Have a plan of attack for social media

I have a strategy and a calendar. My strategy I wrote after attending a course at the Google Digital Garage in Birmingham, it’s got my goals mapped out and it outlines what/when/where I post. My calendar for these social media posts I plan a month ahead; although ideally I’d like to be 3 months ahead. I do try to keep the calendar flexible to allow for changing priorities to keep up with the needs of my audience.

Further reading:

The minefield that is social media

How a tiny little business card can help you

How to network if the idea terrifies you


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