What it Means for Me to be My Own Boss and How You Can Too

If you think you can’t be your own boss because you’re not talented enough, then I’ve got some news for you: I failed as my own boss for almost 20 years before finding success.

Everybody can become a successful boss if they are willing to put in the time and energy to develop a few skills. These are the top 3 things I wish I had known 20 years ago that I believe to be essential if you want to be your own boss.

#1 Recognize your shortcomings and appreciate your strengths. The best advice I can give someone who wants to be their own boss is that you need to be willing to look at the mirror and see the areas of your life that need improvement.

Let me be clear that I do not mean self-loathing!

Recognizing your shortcomings means that you are able to reflect on ways to improve. It means celebrating your strengths and appreciating the work you can do to better yourself. Everybody has room for improvement in some way, shape or form.

Be confident in what you know and what you can do, but be equally confident in what you’re working towards. People want to see a leader who is authentic and able to share their struggles. Be open with others and watch how others will open up to you.

When I first started seeing success, I was embarrassed to tell people that I had failed for 17 years first. I never told anyone. I was ashamed of my past. Now, I am proud of how my failures made me who I am today.

Being able to recognize your shortcomings takes courage. Making the choice not to improve is the first step towards strengthening your ability as a boss.

#2 Praise the success of others. Be the type of boss that doesn’t see the success of others as taking away from your own success. When one person succeeds, we all succeed and that should be celebrated. Always praise the hard work of people on your team or in your community.

Cheering for others will develop a mindset of gratitude, positivity and joy.  You can’t genuinely cheer for others if you are caught up in negativity.

People gravitate to someone when it’s obvious that they care about others. Watch how things change around you and opportunities open up when you make an effort to be the biggest cheerleader to others.

#3 Mind over matter is key. See success by cultivating a strong mindset. When you are your own boss, there will be days when it feels like nothing is going right and you’re ready to give up.

Don’t. Push through it.

When you take a “Mind Over Matter” mindset, you are choosing to focus on what you know is true, regardless of what you feel at the moment. Mind over matter is all about choosing to believe in yourself, even if nobody else does. Don’t quit on yourself like I did for 17 years. It won’t lead to success.
Decide that you can achieve your dreams and then commit to succeeding. Your mindset is most of the battle, show it who’s boss.


Connect the Dots

Look at the three categories listed above that are vital for a successful boss. In each category, write down 1 way you can put this into practice today. For #1, pick a shortcoming and a strength. Celebrate your strength and reflect on ways to overcome that shortcoming. For #2, pick a person you want to praise today. Send them a kind note or message sharing in their joy and excitement. Do this everyday with somebody new. 
For #3, develop a mind over matter mindset. Visualize your dreams each day and commit to achieving them. 

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