Do You Have the Courage to Start Your Own Business?

October 6, 2011

Three years ago, I decided to leave my six-figure paying job to pursue my passion and start my own business.  The decision required months of deep thought, planning and opportunity analysis.  Most of all, it required a lot of courage.

Dale Carnegie once said, “Most of us have far more courage than we ever dreamed possible,” which I did not fully understand until I took the leap of faith to pursue my entrepreneurial dreams.

Often times, the decision to quit one’s job is made more easily based on circumstances such as:


  1. Experiencing consistently high stress levels that wreak havoc on your health and wellness.
  2. Inferring that your place of employment is on the brink of disaster or that promotional opportunities are limited or nonexistent.
  3. Identifying that your side-business has grown to the point at which it requires your full-time attention and can provide for you and/your family’s financial and social wellbeing.
  4. Being asked to do something that you consider to be ethically or legally wrong.
  5. Uncovering a new opportunity, such as partnering with a friend or colleague to start a business or choosing to become a franchisee.

Other times, it can be extremely challenging to ascertain if and when leaving employment to start one’s own business is the right decision.  I recall lying in bed awake at night wondering, “Will I be able to generate enough income to keep my home?  Save for my son’s college?  Take an annual vacation?  Pay for health insurance?”  Also, “Will I have any time to spend with my family???”

Any time our survival is at risk, it is normal to lack courage and become fearful.  As human beings, when we encounter such fears our instincts instruct us to retreat and stay on the ‘safe’ path.  I argue, however, that those fears should trigger our desire to start researching so that an educated decision can be made based on facts, not fears.

Over time, one will become more courageous in his/her decision, whether it’s to ultimately quit a job for a new opportunity or remain in the current position.  I think Dale Carnegie would agree as he said, “Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.”

If you are considering starting your own business and  have the financial resources to become a franchisee, but aren’t sure which franchisor is ideal for you, attend the Meet the Franchisors Expo on Weds, Oct. 12th from 12:30 – 4 pm CST at the Cahaba Grand Conference Center  in Birmingham.  The event is free when you pre-register, otherwise the entry fee at the door is $10.  Each attendee with receive a free membership into the Alabama Franchise Alliance.*  View schedule. by clicking here.

Meet the Franchisors is an educational and interactive Exposition co-hosted by FranNet of Alabama & East Tennessee, Alabama SBDC, Alabama Franchise Alliance, Central Alabama Women’s Business Center, and Duell Hunt, Attorneys at Law.

This post is brought to you by the good folks at Dale Carnegie Training of Alabama, providers of professional development and management development courses and information in Huntsville, Alabama. We would love to connect with you on Facebook and Twitter @DaleCarnegieALA.

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