As most businesses do, Cranky Girl Tie Dye started out as a dream. A vision! Dropped into Cranky Girl's lap like a blessing. The idea of launching it was delightful, letting people smile because of our artwork and watching them enjoy it. However, the actual action of physically starting it up was very unclear and very uncertain.
There are MANY factors that go into the creation of a small business. There are MANY avenues to start with. There are MANY different opinions on how to start. Small Business Big Dreams blog will be Cranky Girl's take on the topic.
We truly hope it helps you, whether in your current job setting or starting up your own business in general.
We will be talking about the good, the bad, and the ugly. Some of the stuff will not be sugar-coated. It's not meant to dissuade you from achieving your dreams but to potentially prepare you for what may come your way.
So let's jump right in!
First off, let's think about one of the most important questions: What is your dream? The question sounds so simple but when you take a step back and physically ask yourself this question you might find yourself overwhelmed.
Some of you may have a dream already and some of you may not. Those of you who have your dream may be struggling on how to make it into a reality while those who don't have a dream may be struggling to come up with a dream to put a plan into action to make it reality.
Contrary to popular belief, Cranky Girl believes that if you don't have a dream yet that it is okay! Do not stress about it otherwise you can get trapped in the cycle of "Who am I?" and "What's my purpose?". These questions, while great questions, can actually cause you to stress to the point of depression so this is where we should start for part 1.
The whole point of the question "What is your dream?" is not to stress you out. It's literally an arrow that helps point you to a potential path you could take. To take some time to think about what you want is a good thing. To stress out about it so much it causes you to mentally and physically decline is not a good thing.
For those of you who don't have a dream currently. Do Cranky Girl a favor. Take a deep breath and relax. Cranky Girl has talked to many people over the years. There is one thing that all people who don't have a cut and dry dream seem to do: stress.
At this point, it's a good idea to change the question from "What is my dream?" to "How do I figure out my dream?" instead. Why should you change this question? Well, it does a few things. Primarily, it changes how your brain processes the question.
With 'what' questions we seem to need to answer the question right then. For example "What are you doing?", "What's your name?", "What's your favorite color?" There are so many "what?" questions that have definite answers like these that when we ask ourselves "What is my dream?" it seems to put the brain in panic mode for those still figuring our their dreams. To ask, "How do I figure out my dream?" will put the brain in a different mode for thought process.
How so? Simply put, what is the most commonly asked how question? Cranky Girl's answer would be "How are you?" Asking "How are you?" causes the brain to stop and actually think about the question even if all you say out loud is "I'm fine." It runs through a checklist. Are you hungry? Are you thirsty? Are you feeling okay? Why are there negative feelings? Why are their positive feelings?
So if our brain processes "what" and "how" questions differently doesn't it make sense to change the question from "What are my dreams?" to "How do I figure out my dreams?" if we are unsure what our dreams are and are struggling to answer the question?
So ask yourself, "How do I figure out my dreams?". Ironically, this can actually be answered by some "What?" questions that do give you some cut and dry answers about yourself already!
What do you like?
What do you not like?
What's your favorite thing to do?
What is your least favorite thing to do?
What have you smiled about today?
What have you frowned about today?
Each and every one of us has likes and dislikes. For example, if you dislike traffic you probably don't want your dream to be starting up a cab service. You will be miserable.
But, on the reverse side, if you love organizing you might consider starting up a planning business of some sort instead.
Create a list of things you like and don't like. If that doesn't come easily then create a list of things you smiled about and a list of things you frowned about. Then ask yourself "What made you smile?", "What made you frown?", etc.
Sounds crazy, right? Well, listen to this! Cranky Girl had someone approach her and the person didn't necessarily have a dream and also struggled with the same questions. They felt stuck in limbo and struggled to answer what their likes and dislikes were. They felt like they had no personality.
So Cranky Girl asked her "What was one thing that made you smile over the weekend?"
The person answered "Believe it or not, when I was putting dishes in the dishwasher. I was so proud of myself for placing them perfectly in there. They all fit and it felt good."
Cranky Girl simply asked, "Why?"
The person ended up shrugging and saying "I don't know. I guess because it looked organized."
The next question was also simple but it paved the way to a new way of thinking. "Do you liked being organized?"
The answer from the person was an immediate "Yes. When things are organized it makes me smile."
From there, many questions opened up. Questions the individual hadn't thought about before. "How about cleaning?", "How about planning?", "How about puzzles?", "How about things being in patterns?"
All of these questions were answered with yes, no, or kind of. Well, that opened up to "What do you think about being an event organizer? What about cleaning up other people's messes? What about a cleaning business? What about creating puzzles for people to solve? What about becoming a librarian to put books in order? What if it wasn't a physical book store but a digital?"
Question after question that turned out to be cut and dry answers. It took the big question "What is my dream?" and broke it down smaller so the brain could process it, effectively deducing the individuals likes and dislikes and expanding the possibilities in a way that the individual hadn't previously thought of because of the stress the question "What is my dream?" had caused.
There are so many options and so many avenues that the question can be very overwhelming so we hope your take away from part one of Small Business Big Dreams is it's okay not to have a dream yet. Figuring it out can be step number one.
Look forward to part 2 of Small Business Big Dreams!