As a teen, I never thought in a million years that I would ever go the entrepreneurial route and start a business. Basic math was a breeze, but I was dreadful at algebra, geometry wasn’t much better, pre-cal and calculus sabotaged all chances I had of academic scholarships, and accounting actually gave me nightmares. (No, seriously, it did!)
I’m a determined, optimistic little blonde, though, so I stuck with it, and you know what happened?
I got up one day and it all just… clicked.
I seriously almost spat my tea all over my laptop because it felt like someone flipped a switch in my head and made numbers easy.
Except no switches were flipped to bring on this magical click.
I made that happen myself.
Wanna know how?
I shifted my mindset. Basically, I woke up that morning determined to start my business come hell or high water, and that mind-numbing fear I felt every time I thought about “the numbers” as they related to my business just went poof and disappeared.
(I won’t lie, calming tea helped, too. But not as much as one might think.)
What led to this drastic mindset shift, you ask?
I had a damn good idea.
Or what I thought was (and still think is) a damn good idea, anyway. For the first time in a long time, I felt crazy passionate about something outside the arena.
Normally, the wild, passionate, “I’m gonna do this!” feelings come with being on a horse and jumping anything over 2 foot or finally achieving a decent frame or proper bend on a green horse. But not this time.
This time, I felt all those things about business.
So yeah, my confidence was through the roof.
I wanted this.
Specifically, I wanted this for myself and for my horse, Sunny. (Sunny deserves the world, anyway, but that’s a story for another time.)
I couldn’t stop thinking about my idea, I wanted it so badly. After a while, my business just sort of sprang to life in my mind. From the mission statement and the color palette to what products and services I would offer and how I would market them, it came to me.
This sounds sooo corny, but oh my giddy aunt, it felt like I finally had a purpose: to see this business come to life.
(P.S. 10 points to Gryffindor if you understood that reference.)
So I got to work.
Nothing on God’s green earth was going to stop me, either. So over the course of about a year, I planned everything, down to the most seemingly insignificant detail.
I planned my products.
I planned my services.
I laid out goals for the next five years.
I set up my home office, cheesy purple string lights included.
I pinned up every motivational quote I found that spoke to me so that I’d have something to look at when things got difficult.
I got to work on a business plan…
...and that’s when things got extra difficult.
One of the most important parts of a business plan is the financial section.
AKA “The Numbers” section.
Boy, I almost gave up.
It was the morning of that fateful, almost-spewed-my-tea day, and I’d been riding a year-long business planning high. I knew that I’d have to face my arch enemy, The Numbers, soon enough, but it finally happened.
I looked at my business plan outline again, swallowed my fear with a sip of tea, and thought about what all I really needed since I was the only person who would see this business plan, anyway.
Well, what would running this business cost me?
What would I sell? How much would I sell those things for? How much would I have to sell to break even, then to turn a profit?
How much should I have in my business’s savings account in case shit hits the fan? (This is a serious concern for me because bad things happen to me a lot more than I think is probably normal.)
Cue magical switch flip feeling.
I literally just laid out exactly what I needed to know by simply asking questions!
Better yet, with minimal research, I could figure out exactly what I needed to do to answer said questions.
After that, it took me less than a day to cross dealing with my arch nemesis “The Numbers” off of my to-do list.
That said, I'd love to help you out if you're struggling with financial planning, too, which is why I put together this super simple, cost-effective mini course all about financial planning for newbie equine business owners (or anyone who wants to join, really). So, if you're in the same boat I was & you'd like a bit of guidance as you trudge through this most annoying of business planning steps, check out my new mini course Don't Fear "The Numbers" below.
Additionally, I put together a quick checklist of what I did to help you deal with "the numbers" to help you get started.
How did the business planning process go for you? Did dealing with “the numbers” work out okay, or did they leave you in a cold sweat, too? Tell me all about your experiences in the comments!