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"You Are Not Alone"

by Dave Balch, "The Stay-at-Home CEO"ô

(c) 2000, A Few Good People, Inc.

The life of a home-based businessperson can be a lonely one.  Some home-based businesses are just that: home BASED but there is plenty of outside activity.  For example, a home-based plumbing business may have an office at home but all of the work is done outside the office.  They are the lucky ones.  Most of us sit in our home offices with our telephones and computers, marketing, selling, and doing all kinds of things to promote our businesses, but no one is around except the dog.  Who do we talk to?  Who do we interact with?  Who do we bounce ideas off of?  To whom are we accountable?

This is a common problem among us bathrobe-types, but do not despairÖ you are not alone.  There are several ways around this problem, but you have to work at it to make it happen.  One way is to join your local Chamber of Commerce, and attend all of their events.  The idea is to get out there and talk to other business people.  Find out what they are doing, and tell them what you are doing.  Just the process of talking about it will help you think!  And hearing about other peopleís activities will give you ideas.  Finally, you just might stir up some business with other members!  You just canít go wrong attending Chamber events.

Another aspect of this problem is accountability.  You know what you have to do, but if you donít do it you donít have to answer to anyone.  Sometimes things can slip if you donít have to explain why.  Sounds kind of silly doesnít it?  

If you have to do something, just do it.  Right?  Wrong.  It can be very difficult to do what you have to do, especially if itís something you donít like to do or if you just donít feel like it.  And if there is no one to answer to, itís just too easy to let things slip.  I know I often have that problem, and it helps to have someone to answer to if you get lazy.  

The trick is to find someone who you can work with that will help keep you on track.  It doesnít have to be a professional personÖ ideally, it can be someone else with a home-based business that has the same problem.  Schedule a 10-minute phone call once a week so you can check up on each other.  Itís amazing how much of an incentive that can be!  And, there is always the added benefit of being able to bounce ideas off of each other, network, and learn from each otherís experiences.

Running a home-based business is a dream come true for many, but as with most things in life there are trade-offs.  You donít have to be alone if you donít want to be.  So donít.

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