Business owner stress

Rich Dad Poor Dad Author, Rober Kiyosaki, suggests you can earn an income by being a business owner, self employed, an investor or an emplopyee. Most are happy to be an employee becuse it’s how we were condioned in our school system. Get a good job and work hard was the only option most of our parents knew, so that’s what they taught us kids.

Need for security

My recent attendance at Tony Robbins’ UPW event taught me our need for security is often what keeps us grounded in a full time job. Unfortunately very few jobs are secure these days because loyalty has declined, jobs are being sent overseas and our narrow minded focus is on our short term performance for this quarter. If you fail to tick shareholder’s boxes for a single quarter, you could be gone like last week’s pay. How’s that for security?

So, some of us venture out to build something of our own. Something bigger. Better.

Most people who become business owners actually graduate from being an employee to self employed … not that there’s anything wrong with that. What it means is that you’ve bought yourself a job, instead of a business. If you get sick, take a day off or enjoy a holiday any given day, your business will slow significantly or stop.


You will find it more challenging to enjoy a holiday, have a day off, find flexibility in how you spend your “work hours” or grow your business beyond a single full time income.

Business owner vs self employed

What happens if you call in sick?

Everyone gets sick sometimes. So what happens if you get sick or suffer an injury that prevents you from working for the day? Will your business still make money that day? Ideally, you should aim to build a business where a day off doesn’t mean your business stops.

Can you take a holiday?

Holidays are essential when you create your own business or you run the risk of burning out. As a business owner, you need to make sure what you do is sustainable. Sometimes that means taking a step back to recharge. Can you afford to take some time off if it means your business will perform better in the long term? Instead of focusing on what you earn this quarter, take some time to think about the kind of business you can create over a decade.

Can you multiply your income?

When you’re self employed, you need to show up to work. When you charge for your time, you often end up debating what an hour of your time is worth. How much someone pays for you to be there for an hour should be irrelevant… here’s why you should never charge for your time. When you are simply asking someone to pay your salary, the most you are likely to make is the equivalent of a full time wage working for someone else.

Sole traders vs solopreneurs

Do you work by yourself in a service based business? If you do, you’re probably what’s known as a sole trader. A sole trader’s business is almost entirely dependent on the business owner being there. So, what’s the first step into a business that runs itself.

A solopreneur is a single person business, which doesn’t depend on the business owner being present 100 percent of the time. Solopreneurs outsource work, use automation and create systems to keep their business running like clockwork. I previously publised an article on Savvy SME detailing the difference between a sole trader and a solopreneur.

Micro-business design

Tim Ferriss was the first I know of to suggest a concept called Work-Life Design. I’d suggest you can design your own micro-business in much the same way. You can take gradual steps to create the business you want, which support your lifestyle.

Creating the right business systems is what will set you free in your own business. As a solopreneur, this might be something as simple as creating the right habits to enact, day in day out. Alternatively, it might include outsourcing of non-core activities or automation of routine tasks.

Run like Clockwork

Mike Michalowicz wrtote an excellent booked called Clockwork, which helps any small business owner design a business to run itself (well, almost). Indeed it’s a great place to start if you’re looking to grow.

Million dollar micro-business

As a solopreneur, you’re likely to also be interested in Elaine Pofedlt’s book, Million Dollar One Person Business. One person businesses don’t have a team to delegate to yet, so they need to take advantage of habits, automation and outsourcing non-core work.

Owners steer

Whether you’re self employed now or on the path to creating your million dollar, one person business, I hope I’ve inspired you to think bigger. When you step back from the day to day operations in your business, you can start to work on your business. When you become a business owner who steers the ship, that’s when you can have the greatest impact.


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