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How To Start Your Business When You’re Scared

Stuck in indecision? Terrified of making the wrong move and losing everything? Wanting so badly to quit your job and start your own business but absolutely petrified of what might happen? This article talks about the key to succeeding in your goals and making your dreams a reality: taking action. The 4 reasons we resist taking action, why taking action is critical to your success, and how to take action sustainably so you don’t burn out. If you want to start or scale your business but you’re scared, this article is for you.


Audacious dreams are terrifying.

Starting your own business, paying off your debt, losing the extra weight, reinvigorating your marriage… changing anything about what you’re used to is a big step.

I see so many people full of immense potential settle for less than amazing lives because they are afraid of doing what it takes to change their realities.

And then I have the honor of working with the people that decided to step up and commit to building fulfilling lives exploding with joy!

Over the course of my own entrepreneurship journey (from working 12 hour days making 5 figures a year at a soul sucking corporate job, to working 12 hour WEEKS making 5 figures a MONTH doing what I love, read more about me)…

And over the many years of helping business owners start and scale purpose driven businesses….

I’ve learned a lot about what holds us back from success.

I want to share with you the 4 reasons we resist working on our dreams, why the key is taking scary, messy, massive action anyway, and how to achieve success in a sustainable way.

If you’ve ever thought to yourself, I can’t do it, this article is for you.

I “don’t do” entrepreneurship

When I first start working with clients who are miserable in their corporate jobs, they always have one thing in common…

The limiting belief that they can’t run their own businesses.

If you believe that the fact that you

  • Have never started a business
  • Don’t know a single entrepreneur
  • Are feeling a serious amount of self doubt

means that you cannot start and scale a successful business, I’ll be the first to tell you that you’re WRONG.

You are limiting your potential if you put “entrepreneurship” into a box in the corner and dismiss it as something you’re not qualified to do.

I know it can be tempting, in fact I was there myself.

When I first started my “little project,” I didn’t call it a business for almost 12 months because entrepreneurship felt out of reach for me.

I was just “trying this thing” to see if it might work, but I was only half committed because I was so sure I’d fail.

Related post: How To Boost Your Confidence

Sound familiar?

Often, we resist taking action on our dreams because it falls outside of our narrowly defined identity. We don’t identify with the words entrepreneur or business owner. We classify it as something “other people” do.

So, if you have a dream firing up in your belly but you’re burying it deeper because it looks different from a stable, 9-5, corporate job… believe me when I say that you can absolutely start your own business.

In fact, with the right support, you can start a business and leave your full time job within 12 months!

That’s exactly why I do what I do, because I can’t stand to see ambitious women stuck in mediocre jobs when they could be out there lighting up the world with their brilliant business ideas.

If you’re thinking about starting a business, join our community to leap from thinking into acting

I don’t know enough

Wanna know my personal favorite way of self sabotaging my success?

Believing that I don’t know enough to take the right next step.

This is something I see my clients struggle with all the time as well… 

They think that they just need the next course, the next freebie, the next webinar, the next workshop, and then five more after that… AND THEN they’ll know enough to take action.

The problem is they never seem to get to “enough.”

While I 100% agree that learning and growth is vital, here’s what I know to be true:

When you take messy, scary, imperfect action in your business, you LEARN and IMPROVE real fast… 

Taking action is the BEST way to get closer to your goal.

When you buy into the belief that you just need to research more, what you’re *really* saying is I can’t trust myself; I’m not good enough, and I’m terrified of making a mistake…

There may be gaps in your skillset, and there’s nothing wrong with learning alongside doing, but you cannot learn in a silo without applying it through real, raw, action.

It just doesn’t work that way.

So if you’re using “learning” as a crutch to avoid taking a risk and putting yourself out there, you’re never going to break through to your next level.

Related post: Impostor Syndrome: 4 Tips To Overcome It

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“It’s not the right time”

Remember when you didn’t have a job, didn’t have a mortgage, didn’t have kids, didn’t have a partner, didn’t have debt, and didn’t have any other firm commitments in your life…? 

That would have been the “perfect” time to start a business!

Except you were also probably 10 years old…

I hear this excuse all the time on discovery calls: I’d love to start my business but it’s just not the right time.

Here’s a question, do you truly believe there is ever going to be a “perfect” time to pursue your dream!?!?

Related post: How To Recommit To Your Goals

There will never be a perfect time to start a business unless you decide that the perfect time is right now

ANA MCRAE

Things will always come up.

Bills will always need to be paid.

Depending on your employer will always feel safer than trusting yourself…

So many dreams and great business ideas never came to life because there wasn’t a “good time.”

And so many dreams and great business ideas DID come to life EVEN THOUGH it wasn’t a “good time.”

The only difference is the one you get to choose:

Will you DECIDE that you are WORTHY of pursuing your dream, or will you continue to AVOID your fear?

Related post: How To Overcome Self Doubt

Because that’s what it comes down to.

When I hear “it’s not the right time”, what I know to be true is you’re thinking “I am not worthy of making myself and my dream a priority in my life.”

And that makes me so sad.

If you’re choosing not to pursue your dream, that’s okay, but you must be very honest with yourself about why that is and realize it is an intentional choice you are making.

Related post: How To Reduce Anxiety During Uncertainty

If you think you may be hiding from your dream because it’s wild, and scary, and completely outside your comfort zone, let’s have a conversation about what it would look like to step into your full potential.

Schedule your complimentary discovery call today to help you decide what to do next.

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“it won’t work”

You know what I LOVE?

The absolute certainty with which we can convince ourselves that we don’t have what it takes.

It’s crazy how fast we can have a good idea, think up the steps to make it happen, and then convince ourselves that there is no way it is ever going to work.

This happens ALL THE TIME to people everywhere (no, it’s not just you!) and it’s exactly why coaching is so powerful. Because you have someone who knows your full potential coaching you off the ledge of giving up on all your hopes and dreams.

You see, all of this self doubt is actually part of a very normal process: the change cycle.

It’s a psychological process our brains go through when we do anything that falls outside of our current (narrowly defined) identity

  1. We feel discontented with our current situation (like your crappy job)
  2. We reach a breaking point where it is no longer bearable (your boss is a d*ck again and you’ve cried 12 times that week)
  3. We declare that we’re going to make a change (you’re going to quit!)
  4. We feel intense fear around making said change (how the heck are you going to pay the bills!?)
  5. Our brains literally block out the memories of how unhappy we were before (your job really isn’t THAT bad)
  6. We backtrack and forget about pursuing the change (here you are, showing up to the same job again on Monday morning 5 years later)

If you would just take a moment to work through your fears instead of accepting them at face value, you could get from where you are today to where you want to be in the future!!!

But instead of doing that and seeking out the support we need to work through it, so many of us stick with the thought that “it’ll never work” and give up on the dream.

Related post: The 4 Biggest Things Holding You Back In Life

Here’s my question… how do you know it will never work?

Where is the evidence for this conclusion?

Often, there is none, except for the “reasons” we make up in our minds.

That’s the biggest thing standing between you and your dream… the space between your ears.

So start questioning your assumptions and looking for evidence IN FAVOR of beliefs that SERVE you, rather than beliefs that hold you back.

How would you feel if you shifted your thinking to:

  • I am worthy of pursuing my dream.
  • I have everything I need to succeed.
  • I can trust myself.

Everything changes.

If you’ve got a dream that you’re convinced is too far out of reach for you, let me show you otherwise. You’ve got nothing to lose, and a wildly amazing life to gain.

Related post: How To Find Your Purpose In Life

Why taking action is necessary To Start Your Business

Here’s the reason it is CRITICAL that you start taking action on your dream TODAY.

When you take action, EVERYTHING becomes easier.

Related post: 17 Ways To Change Your Life

The voices of self doubt become a little quieter and you build up your confidence in your ability to do this sh*t!

The creative ideas start flowing easier and you realize you know much more than you thought you did!

The glimpses of a successful future become more frequent and you learn and grow and realize how far you’ve come since you started.

Your dream starts to come together when you take action.

Even if that action is imperfect, terrifying, and messy… it creates real learning, real growth, and real results.

One of my clients who is building up a coaching business so that she can quit her corporate job and pursue work she LOVES mentioned that now that she is actually taking steps in her business, everything is much less overwhelming.

She mentioned it casually but it’s a HUGE realization that a lot of people don’t realize:

Action creates momentum. Momentum creates results.

Sitting in indecision will kill your dream

ANA MCRAE

Taking action will get you there.

If you’re at this fork in the road, you get to decide which path to take, and it’s pretty clear which one will serve you in the long run.

Do. The. Thing.

Related post: How To Change Your Life When Your Job Isn’t Right For You

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How To Start Taking Action Consistently And Achieving Your Goals

Have you been stuck in your business or stalled in pursuing your dream?

Have you started and stopped so many times that you’re not sure whether it’s worth starting again?

Have you made a plan before and then not followed through on it?

Are you sitting there right now, having a very dramatic internal monologue about ALL THE THINGS you could do, and which one is the “right” thing, and whether or not you SHOULD do it, and maybe you’ll just wait and decide when you know for sure…?

Related post: The Ultimate Guide to Setting Goals and Achieving Personal Growth

If you’re stuck in a rut right now, here’s what you need to do.

  1. Journal about all of the thoughts in your head.

    Fill 3-5 pages (without censoring yourself) with all your hopes, dreams, fears, doubts, and overwhelm. Get it all on paper. You may resist this and claim it is time consuming, or terrifying, but you’ll feel 1000x lighter when you do it.
  2. Recognize that the fear you are feeling is 100% normal.

    It does not mean you’re on the wrong path.

    So many people stand still because they have this misconception that unless you’re 100% confident in your idea or your plan, you can’t move forward.

    The reality is, entrepreneurship doesn’t get any less scary, you just get better at managing your fear and learning that it is PART of the journey.
  3. Pick ONE THING to do that brings you closer to your dream every day.

    And do it. Become the person who takes action.

It doesn’t matter how long your dream has been sitting on the shelf.

The fact that it is still tugging at your heart is evidence that you were meant to pursue it.

This is where my zone of genius lays… helping overwhelmed women ditch the 9-5 and move into purpose driven businesses so they can double their income and their impact doing what they absolutely love.

What is ONE THING you are going to do today to move you closer to your goal?

And if you don’t know the one thing, let’s work together to get you the clarity you need to make massive momentum.

Be Wary: The Downside To Too Much Action

I go all in.

Whenever I pursue anything in my life, it’s an all or nothing approach.

  • If I’m going to start mountain biking more often, it’s going to be every single Wednesday night at 5:00pm sharp. No excuses. No deviation.
  • If I’m going to clean, it’s going to be the entire house and every closet. No way would I just vacuum one room.
  • If I’m going to eat healthier, it’s going to be 0 sugar, 0 carbs, 0 processed meat every single day. Just try to get more vegetables in? That’s not grand enough.

And here’s where this mentality bites me in the *ss EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.

I find myself completely overwhelmed.

In my business, this used to manifest as rollercoasters of productivity.

I would either be taking a TON of action every day and following through with a massive plan to hit an insane goal… or I’d be doing nothing…

The all or nothing mindset only “works” (and I use that term loosely) because you HAVE TO balance the ALL with the NOTHING.

It is unsustainable to be ALL in, all the time.

And so I would repeatedly face burnout.

At one point, I realized it was a cycle. I had it down to 9 weeks! 6 weeks of massive productivity and then 3 weeks of questioning my life, avoiding anything to do with the business, and feeling really bad about myself.

It took me longer than I would have liked to create the balance I needed to succeed in the long run.

That’s why I am SO DILIGENT about supporting my coaching clients with finding a structure that works for them as they launch their businesses…

I know for a fact that this is a marathon, not a sprint, and you need a system that works for YOU.

So, I want you to take action on your dream, I really do. But what you should avoid doing at all costs is reading this post, getting super inspired, and making a plan to do all. the. things… starting 4 minutes ago.

Let’s stick with one thing, and add more on slowly as we go.

If you feel yourself on the edge of burnout trying to start a business while working a full time job, grab my business success workbook to help you identify the needle movers in your business and create a sustainable schedule for getting them done.

You get free access when you join our email community, and we are all excited to support you in creating the future of your dreams!

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What your first steps “should” be

If you’ve read this far down the article, you understand why you haven’t been taking action, why you should be taking action, and how to do it sustainably. But you might be asking yourself where to start.

Related post: Are You Working On The Right Goals?

What is the right thing for me to do right now?

What is the right answer to solve my current problem?

What is the perfect strategy for hitting my big goal?

The realization I came to (a little too late) in my entrepreneurial journey, is that there is no RIGHT answer.

And here’s why I struggled so much with that…

One of my “saboteurs” is The Stickler, who believes that

  • Right is right and wrong is wrong 
  • There has to be a right way
  • If you can’t do it perfectly, don’t do it at all

So instead of taking action in my business, I kept trying to figure out what the perfect strategy was.

Related post: 10 Tips To Be More Motivated

I was spending more time listening to “gurus” on Instagram about what I should be doing with my business, than connecting with my audience and putting my work out there into the world.

Learning about success was always easier than working toward success

Instead of picking a strategy and following through with it, I would pick a strategy and then switch it, and then switch it again, and then switch it again.

The new shiny approach always seemed more enticing than following through with my current approach.

So instead of sitting down and writing marketing content, I would sit down and dream of my future life 10 years from now and ponder the best way to make it happen so that I don’t waste any time…

When, in reality, I was wasting time sitting there doing nothing instead of taking real steps forward.

If you’re stuck in strategizing, let’s move you into action.

Try integrating the following affirmations into your morning routine (this is a game changer!!)

  • I am ALWAYS doing the right thing
  • I am ALWAYS making the right decision
  • EVERYTHING always works out for me.

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The 3 Keys To Taking Massive Action

I love helping successful people break through to the next level.

This means working with driven, ambitious, and passionate changemakers, who are also overwhelmed, busy, and stressed.

Sound a little too much like you?

My zone of genius lies in helping people create the momentum their business needs to take off, and I do this in three ways.

I help my clients get in touch with their authentic purpose, why they wanted to start this business in the first place, and why it is worth pushing through the hard parts to get to lifestyle they didn’t think was possible for them.

I help my clients focus on a strategy that is right FOR THEM, not a cookie cutter approach that *should* work for them because it worked for me. Everybody’s situation is unique, and I am here to help you build a business that serves YOU while you serve your community.

I help my clients create the balance that will sustain their success in the long run. It’s easy to let a dream swallow up every ounce of your time, money, and energy. When we are passionate about our work, we can get caught up in what we “have to do” to reach success, and we fail to balance the other parts of our lives that are bringing us joy and happiness RIGHT NOW. I help my clients prioritize their physical health, their mental health, their families, and their happiness WHILE they put their magic out into the world.

If you’re feeling the pull to start or scale your business but you find yourself saying

  • I’m too busy
  • I’m not an entrepreneur
  • I don’t know enough
  • It will never work
  • I have no idea what to do next

I am here to SUPPORT YOU in making your dreams happen.

Schedule your complimentary 90 minute coaching session to experience my magic for yourself!

The world is not setting you up for success.

Starting a business with a full time job, and a family, and a whole lot of other things you need to do is challenging.

But it is not impossible to achieve financial freedom, be your own boss, travel the world, and work from your couch in your pajamas IF…

If you are passionate about your purpose and committed to a future of excellence.

The first step in taking scary, messy, massive action toward a life that you love is deciding that you are worth it.

The second step is reaching out for support, and you know where to find me.

Start today.

Make bold moves right now.

Stop hiding behind your excuses and justifying your fear.

Related post: Overcoming Fear To Achieve Success

You have everything you need to build a life that you are proud of.

Now get out there and make a move!


I would love to know what has held you back from taking action in starting your business in the past. Please let me know in the comments below. 🙂


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