ou’ve probably read a story or two about an individual who grew up in less-than-ideal conditions and went on to be successful. What about those individuals who are recovering from one of life’s hardest trials – addiction? According to Psych Central, “Many people, once they are in recovery, begin to thrive creatively and professionally and open their own businesses,” many of whom go on to use these skills to tap into their entrepreneurial instincts. This quote is followed by the stories of 10 individuals who turned their life around post-recovery and became business owners. If starting your own business sounds appealing, check out these tips.
Use the Skills You Learned in Recovery
Have you ever stopped to think about just how much you learned in recovery? While the ultimate goal was for you to learn the skills you need to stop your addictive habits, you unknowingly developed skills that will be helpful in your career. For starters, you won – you remained strong and motivated to overcome a challenge that life presented you, which is a common occurrence in the business world. You learned to solve problems and have a genuine understanding that determination, hard work, and a support network of like-minded individuals are a recipe for successful leadership.
Take Your Interests and Passions a Step Further
During rehab, your mind was occupied, but now that you are on your own, your mind is free to wander. Boredom can be a dangerous road for a recovering addict and can potentially lead to a relapse. For this reason, now is the perfect time to explore new hobbies and activities and turn them into a side business. Not only is it the ultimate learning experience, but it also keeps you busy, occupied, and moving in the right direction – forward.
According to Mashable, “Side hustles often lead to accidental discoveries of new interests, which stem from exploring a novel experience without a planned outcome.” Don’t let the fact that it’s on the side trick you into thinking it can’t provide a profit. Rome wasn’t built in a day remember? Start small, test the waters, and work your way up.
Let’s Talk About Funding
Starting a business, even if it’s a side gig, is going to take a little bit of funding. When you are first getting started, the key is to take advantage of helpful resources to keep costs down. Sites such as Etsy and Fiverr provide you with the platform you need to get started without the headache (and confusion) of creating a professional business plan. Think of it as a low-risk way of testing your business idea. Social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and blogs are great, free marketing tools. Not only can you build a client base, but you can also easily interact with clients and gather important feedback.
There are also more formal ways of securing funding as well, such as a line of credit, business credit card, or a loan. A business credit can help you keep track of expenses and revenue (which is important when tax time arrives), while a line of credit provides you with capital to get your business up and running, serving as an extra cushion. Small business loans are a good option too, but just be sure you know what you are getting into. This lending guide courtesy of Fundera will help you make an informed decision.
Take Care of Yourself
After recovery, there will still be days when you struggle. Adding a side gig to the mix adds extra stress as well. Be sure to take time for yourself via healthy coping mechanisms such as exercise, yoga, meditation, or journaling. Continue meeting with the support network you built while in recovery, and go to meetings often. Your side gig might keep you busy, but you’re never too busy for self-care. Find a sponsor who can be there for you day and night, and surround yourself with family and friends that are supportive of your sober journey.
Life post-recovery can be a little scary and filled with unknowns. Take charge and pick up a side gig to ease back into work and fill your days with meaningful tasks. The options are limitless, so explore, learn, and grow.