Original Link : https://marker.medium.com/the-universe-will-provide-is-not-a-viable-business-strategy-c5ae1f586d45

An #abundancemindset is great, but it won’t read your contracts, keep your books, or build your financial model

Launch. Iterate later. That was my mantra when I first launched my business. It was either that, or remain paralyzed with overwhelm. I always had passion projects while climbing the corporate ladder, but to make my side hustle my main hustle was a whole other level of petrifying.

When I came up with the idea for my business, a 4-day retreat that helps people rewire patterns after heartbreak, my plan was to make it just another side hustle while I continued to work my nine to five.

After a year of planning, I finally set a date to launch the first Renew Breakup Bootcamp with a friend of mine, who was both a psychologist and a seasoned entrepreneur. As long as she was by my side, I felt comfortable to move forward. So I booked the venue, put a deposit down, sold spots, and invited the press.

A few weeks before the retreat, she had to drop out. I panicked. I couldn’t do it alone and my automatic reaction was to postpone. The thought of cancelling the retreat was like getting a shot of mental morphine — I could feel my angst dissipating with warm fuzzy relief. But my friend, knowing I was letting fear get the better of me, convinced me to keep the launch date:

“You’re not cancelling. You need to start at some point. Stop delaying the inevitable.”

Her advice (or more like, her orders) was the push I needed. She was right. There would always be some other excuse about why I wasn’t ready.

If not now, then when?

Perfectionism is procrastination in disguise

I didn’t feel ready, but figured I probably never would. How does one ever feel fully ready to put themselves out there in such a raw and vulnerable way? If you get fired from a job, you can always blame bad management or budget cuts. If a side hustle fails, you can always blame it on your real job for sucking up too much of your time.

But if the company you create fails — that’s all you. It’s telling the world, “Hey I put everything I got into this and couldn’t make it happenI’m a loser.” There’s no scapegoat to pardon your failure.

No more taking payments via Venmo. No more trying to save a dollar by doing everything myself. No more signing contracts without reading them.

I don’t think anyone who takes great risks is ever truly ready. Despite my emotional unease, I went ahead and did it anyway.

On February 10 of 2017 I launched my first bootcamp. I was flying by the seat of my pants, but somehow, nobody could tell. It was a success. The company was featured in FortuneNY Magazine, and Glamour. As media begets more media, the inquiries came flooding in. Shortly after I was being interviewed on national television as a breakup expert. I didn’t have time to foster my imposter syndrome. It was go time whether I was ready for it or not.

Luck or hard work?

I attributed the success of my first few retreats to luck and worried that the luck would run out. Maybe I would be found out that I was really just an imposter. I couldn’t fathom how everything was running so smoothly. But after seeing the same positive changes in the participants, retreat after retreat, I realized, this was no accident. My success wasn’t beginner’s luck. I created a program that worked with repeatable results. I think this is what business folks term “minimum viable product.”

The participants became my biggest brand ambassadors, the company was featured across national media including the front page of the New York Times, I got a book deal in the process, and each bootcamp sold out with waiting lists.

Building things that last

On the outside, it looked like I was running a professional business. After all, having spent my entire professional career in marketing, I was an expert on making things look beautiful on the outside. But if you were to look behind the curtain, my company was running like a mom and pop shop. I didn’t have any systems in place and avoided dealing with the things I wasn’t good at — numbers, legal contracts, and human resources.

You need to have a quality product and the marketing to get it out to the world, but you also need systems in place — the pillars that keep the dream from crumbling.

But I soon realized that I was reaching a precipice. I would either stay small with a glorified passion project or I’d create a real business — on the outside and the inside. I had to build the foundation of the business or become just another marketing trend. And trends fade, just like beauty. If I wanted to build something that lasts, I had to “grow up” as an entrepreneur.

No more taking payments via Venmo. No more trying to save a dollar by doing everything myself. No more signing contracts without reading them.

Abundance mindset and lawyering up

I’ve gone through life with a mentality that “the universe will provide.” And for the most part, it has. Starry-eyed idealism can work wonders for a visionary when getting something from idea to execution. But I’d soon realize that #abundancemindset is not a business strategy.

I was hosting my largest workshop and had a problematic client who was disrupting the experience for both the teachers and participants. I realized I didn’t have any legal protection if the client got out of hand. Fortunately, I was able to keep the situation from escalating, but it was a good wake-up call of what could happen in the future if I didn’t get proper legal agreements in place.

So I hired a lawyer. I hired a business coach. I hired an assistant. I put a proper accounting system in place. I created a financial model. I started to learn about the areas of the business that I wasn’t formally versed in. I felt pushed to my edge and each time, all I wanted was to get back to doing the fun things. I’m a visionary godammit, I don’t do numbers! But I had committed to not just building a business, but growing it. In order to do so, I needed to start from the ground up, one spreadsheet at a time.

During launch phase, taking action and building momentum takes precedence over perfection. Otherwise, it’s easy to get stuck in fear and procrastination. To override the “overwhelm,” you just have to hit the go button, and learn the hard lessons while you’re on the ride. But once you realize that your passion project has legs to become a real business, you mature into the next phase.

You need to have a quality product and the marketing to get it out to the world, but you also need systems in place — the pillars that keep the dream from crumbling. The reality is, it doesn’t matter how great your idea is. Great ideas are born every day. It’s the great idea built on a solid foundation that creates a business that lasts.