๐‘…๐’พ๐“ˆ๐’พ๐“ƒ๐‘” ๐’œ๐’ท๐‘œ๐“‹๐‘’ ๐“‰๐’ฝ๐‘’ ๐’ฎ๐“‰๐‘œ๐“‡๐“‚ by Christina Nsiah

Company: Laces By Co

Owner: CoCo

 So, Iโ€™ve hesitated on writing my story for months. Not because I didnโ€™t want to share, but more so what I wanted to share. Should I be completely transparent, or should I just give the people 50% because I donโ€™t want anyone judging me? I also hesitated because I canโ€™t show people the result of overcoming challenges while I am currently in the stage of overcoming them. Then I realized this is the perfect time to share because I am in the moment of one of the roughest periods of my life. 

To start off, my 2018 was lit!! I felt so free and happy! I had a 6-year tenure with a major corporation that I just up and quit from. I moved to Atlanta where I started my business, didnโ€™t have to worry about money and funded my business entirely on my own. I was able to build my credit over the years and purchased a home and a new car. I still was able to travel, wasnโ€™t stressing about a 9-5. Even though I didnโ€™t make $100k in my first year, I still felt that I had a successful year based on what I learned. I was able to end my year with a bang by visiting my family in Ghana after 20 years of being away with my sister and my friends! I truly had an amazing year! However, as for 2019โ€ฆ. shit has been real! Lol From the day I landed back in Atlanta in January, it has been a major struggle. For starters, I realized that funds were depleting faster than profits were being made and I had no idea what to do. Happy New Year to me lol. 

This has been a major learning experience for me. I love traveling, but I now understand that until I get to a certain level of success, being unavailable when a client needs a service is detrimental to my business. Even though I am a firm believer in work/life balance, as a growing entrepreneur, that mindset doesnโ€™t correlate with the needs of this business in the beginning stages. So far, I have lost contact with most of my clients, my social media marketer ghosted me, and I must work some side hustles to stay afloat which are not substantial enough to contribute to my business.  

After going through a short stint of depression and feeling discouraged my mind was so cloudy. I couldnโ€™t even think about my business at times because I had no money to put into it.Gaining as much knowledge as possible on the ups and downs of entrepreneurship and attending events that inspire you is soimportant. The problem is, I wasnโ€™t doing that. Without the knowledge, you canโ€™t prevent or avoid certain struggles. Without attending those events, you may lose momentum. In order to be successful, itโ€™s important to be honest with yourself. Understand your strengths and weaknesses so you can strategize a plan and continue to move forward.

I considered going back to a 9-5. I attempted to go back, not because I was quitting, more so because I knew that if I didnโ€™t get my finances together, I couldnโ€™t focus on my business. That didnโ€™t work out due to the break I took away from the corporate life to start my business. The company I interviewed praised mefor having the courage to start a business, but I was also denied employment because of it. I was disappointed at first, then I was reminded that everything happens for a reason and that job just wasnโ€™t for me. Since then I have put more time into networking and strategizing a plan which includes building a team, attending upcoming networking events, reaching out to sponsors, etc.

I knew I needed to boss tf up! I had a friend yell at me and say,โ€œYouโ€™re a hustler! You do what you have to do to survive!โ€. Thatโ€™s what I needed to hear. It helped me overcome somefeelings of shame. Itโ€™s good to have a support system and I am so thankful for the family and friends God has blessed me with. I have some of the best friends in the world who I get to learn from daily. Some have more experience in me in cosmetology and they have no problem teaching me skills theyโ€™ve learned over the years. Some have done months of research on all the back-end paperwork needed to start a business and gave me steps on what to do and where to go. Some who knew my financial struggle and even though they were dealing with their own financial issues, gave me money without expecting it in return. Some who are so business minded they always have ideas on ways to make money and theyโ€™ve reached out to me to provide me with options on ways to have multiple incomes. I am blessed beyond measure for the support I have, for my family praying for me daily, and for God providing me with strength and the confidence knowing that I will succeed.

Itโ€™s so easy to get lost in the chaos. You get overwhelmed and have feelings of defeat but what helps is having a clear idea of the end game. What is it that youโ€™re doing all of this for? I was recently reminded of the saying โ€œyou eat what you killโ€. That statement is so powerful to me as a full-time entrepreneur because we donโ€™t have any other choice. If you donโ€™t kill you starveโ€ฆliterally. Itโ€™s a tough game and itโ€™s so much to learn but if you stay motivated and consistent, youโ€™ll be fine.

I am extremely proud that I had the courage to make this leap. Even with all my current struggles Iโ€™m not worried. The struggle is what fuels you and in order to truly rise you must come from somewhere lower therefore your appreciation will be different. I have faith as small as a mustard seed; I will push through, and I will prosper. Thank you for reading ๐Ÿ˜Š

-CoCo

 Facebook: Laces By Co

Instagram: @lacesbyco

Website: www.lacesbyco.com

 

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