Taking risks in business is a prerequisite to becoming an entrepreneur. None of us would have made it as far as we have if we weren’t able to tolerate a certain level of discomfort when it comes to risk-taking.
In 2011, I took my first big risk and left a high-paying, salaried, managerial position to teach yoga, run workshops, and travel around the world. Financially, that risk didn’t pay off, but mentally, emotionally, and spiritually, it was one of the best decisions I’d ever made. It launched me into the world of being an entrepreneur, and I’ve never looked back. It took 4 more years before I started figuring it all out and was able to replace and then exceed the income I’d made as a salaried employee.
Fast forward to today, and taking risks hasn’t gotten any easier.
That doesn’t mean I don’t take them (my wife tells me regularly that she would never be able to tolerate the amount of uncertainty in her professional life that I encounter on a daily basis!). On the contrary. At a certain point, a successful entrepreneur understands that the greater the risk you are willing to take, the greater the reward (potentially)!
In 2015, when I first opened my private practice and quickly became successful, I imagined that I would be a counsellor and therapist until I retired. I did not expect that 6 months later, I would begin coaching other therapists to open successful private practices. And I certainly didn’t anticipate that 2 years after that I would create and serve a community of mental health practitioners across Canada who were all dreaming, launching or growing thriving private practices.
Now, my business is at another crossroads.
I could continue to follow an easy, low-risk path ahead of me whereby I continue to offer counselling and therapy and guide a relatively small group of practitioners, along with offering business coaching.
Or… I could take the leap that scares me (but secretly lights me up inside)!
Build Your Private Practice has the potential to serve tens of thousands of therapists and counsellors across Canada. There is a need for more business coaches, more courses, and much more fulsome support for practitioners in all stages of private practice. But in order to get there, I need to create the space, time, and energy for it. Currently, 90% of work time is filled with seeing counselling clients and offering 1-on-1 business mentorship. I enjoy this work immensely, but it doesn’t leave me with enough time to bring BYPP to the next level.
For the first time this week, I turned down two requests from potential counselling clients. Not just because my practice is full, but because I’m currently not taking on new clients so I can grow other aspects of my business. This feels scary and somewhat surreal.
Am I really beginning to step away from counselling? Am I really moving away from the career I thought I would have for the next two or three decades? The one that I spent tens of thousands of dollars obtaining a Master’s degree for?
The answer is a resounding “yes”. I’m scared … but as they say, if your dreams don’t scare you, they’re probably not big enough.
I know that I wouldn’t be where I am now without becoming a therapist, without running a successful private practice, and without being willing to take both big and small risks along the way.
If you are already knee-deep into being an entrepreneur, you may already be familiar with how your business takes on a life of its own and begins to call you to bigger challenges. How do you handle these crossroads? Do you play it safe? Or do you say “yes” to what scares you and take the leap?
If you need help navigating these crossroads and allowing yourself to be called to something bigger, I welcome you to book a free 20-minute Business Mentorship Consultation.