Is Starting a Business Worth It? Dare I Say, “Do Your Own Thing”!

Maggie Karshner
7 min readFeb 14, 2023

The average American is not an entrepreneur. 84% of the adult workforce in the United States has already asked themselves the question, “Is starting a business worth it?” — and come up with a resounding, “nope”.

Why Don’t More People Start Their Own Business?

I’ll start by sharing the top 5 reasons people don’t start a business:

  1. It takes a lot of work
  2. It feels like a risky decision
  3. Other people might judge you
  4. You’re not sure you have what it take
  5. It can take a long time to see your business grow

There are pros and cons to any venture you take, whether you’re going on vacation or starting a new business. So, you’re thinking about starting a business. Great! Let’s explore both sides of the coin.

What are the Pros and Cons of Starting a Business?

You’re stepping out of the mold and into your true calling. Business ownership is one of the most rewarding decisions you can make, in my opinion.

Some of the reasons I listed above concerning why people choose not to start a business are valid concerns. A few cons to starting a business include:

  • There are no set hours — you make your own schedule and while it’s tempting to think this means you will work less, many new entrepreneurs find themselves investing quite a bit of time while starting a business.
  • It can be quite the lonely venture — remember, most people don’t start their own businesses, so it can be a bit isolating if you don’t intentionally create a network for yourself.
  • You no longer have a boss — as an employee, you work for someone else and their job is to do the higher-level thinking, strategizing, managing, etc. As the business owner, there is no one “above you” to keep you on track or make sure your actions are in line with the company’s goals.
  • It can take a toll on your mental health — starting a business can be overwhelming because of all the steps involved. Also, growth (which is inevitable with entrepreneurship), can be pretty darn uncomfortable.

I can’t guarantee your new business venture will feel wonderful all the time, but I do know starting a business can be incredibly rewarding. Here are just a few pros to branching out and starting your own business:

  • You’re in control — you answer to no one and the direction your business takes is completely up to you. This is empowering and freeing.
  • There is no income ceiling — you’re not a salaried employee anymore, and “promotions” are unlimited. You can make as much money as your heart desires.
  • You choose who you work with — you’ll no longer have to settle on choosing friends from the pool of folks HR deemed “good fits”. As the business owner, everyone you work with is ultimately up to you.
  • You’re creating something you can be proud of — you may have heard the phrase “your business is your baby”. Well, just like raising a child, your business can bring you so much joy as you see it grow and succeed.

It’s great to weigh the pros and cons before you get started on something new.

What’s Keeping You From Starting Your Business?

You, like most people, might believe the “best” way to succeed is by getting a “good job”, i.e. through employment for someone else, and that starting a business is not “for you”.

Maybe you’re someone who struggles to branch out and meet new people. Or maybe you’re a social butterfly worried about missing office life. Either way, starting a business can feel pretty risky.

Taking the leap into entrepreneurship is often the first step to becoming the person you always dreamed of.

What do I mean by this?

You likely have a pretty clear vision in your mind of the things you want, like:

  • A two-story house
  • An electric car
  • A certain amount of money in the bank

You’re also aware at some level which people you want in your life. Maybe…

  • A partner
  • Close friends
  • One or more children

How close are you to having all the things you dream about?

This is when you feel like you become “who you want to be when you grow up” (even if it’s different from what you dreamed of in high school).

You are at a stage in your life where you see the pit-falls of corporate life, the danger of group-think, and the frivolity of “sameness”. You don’t want to be another invisible cog in someone else’s machine.

This is exactly why you might think to hire someone like me as you dip your toes into the world of self-employment.

Should You Start a Business in 2023?

If you’re thinking about diving into entrepreneurship but you’re not sure if it’s worth it, know this: it is not a life requirement that you work well in office environments.

You don’t have to suffer through it any more. Say goodbye to

  • crappy bosses
  • oppressive work environments
  • offensive co-workers
  • the expectation that your work is 100% of your life
  • regulated time off
  • regulated time all together

Your life doesn’t have to be this way.

We trade so much of our power and freedom for the “security” of full-time employment. But what is that “security” worth when a company can easily downsize you?

Where’s the security in cut benefits? How do you feel mentally, physically, and emotionally when a company introduces a policy that goes against your values? How secure are you then?

My Idea of Starting Your Own Business: Do Your Own Thing

If I were to start a movement it would be the Do Your Own Thing movement. We don’t have to work exclusively in office environments. Independence is not a problem to be solved with more meetings and “professional development”.

Earning a living doesn’t have to be tied to corporate employment and it’s not a character flaw or a sign of laziness to escape the confines of your office environment.

In fact, escaping office environments demonstrates great strength of character. In order to launch your own employment opportunities, it takes

  • The creativity to transform your ideas into offers,
  • the discipline to turn your passion into profit,
  • and the courage to invest in yourself.

In fact, investing in yourself is one of the most important steps you can take as a business owner, whether you’re just starting out or you’ve been at it for years.

You no longer need to accept the groups forced upon you by a CEO who only cares about their bottom line. Instead of suffering through whoever HR decides to hire, you can build community with the professionals you choose to work with and make your business anything you dream of.

Are You Ready to Be A Business Owner?

You may think you have nothing to make a business out of, but I want to challenge that mindset.

You are an expert at something, and therefore you can sell that expertise, either as a consultant or a coach. All it takes is realizing you truly have a wealth of knowledge in an area that others know less about than you.

There are people out there right now searching for someone like you to help them grow and learn. It’s amazing what you can build in business with the foundation of first believing in yourself.

Building a network of support with people who also believe in you will make all the difference. You already have people in your life who compliment your knowledge or skill in certain areas. They ask your advice on topics because they trust your intuition and experience.

Those people who recognize your skills are your network. Your coachable areas are those topics on which they need advice.

In addition to building your network or community of potential clients, it’s also important you build a network of professionals who inspire you, provide insight, offer accountability, and be there to let you know you’re not alone.

It’s a great balance for independence. You get to be the boss of your own, self-run business, while also crafting an authentic-to-you group where you do fit in.

How to Start a Business From Scratch

This year, join me in doing something radical: Do Your Own Thing.

Take steps that are genuine and healthy for you.

Maybe you can start by…

  • wearing “business casual” in a more “you” fashion.
  • negotiating with your boss for a more optimal work schedule.
  • make real strides toward turning your passion-project into a profitable business creating your ideal work environment.

However you choose to begin the “Do Your Own Thing” movement, your unique talents will shine brighter for it.

Are you looking for some professional accountability but not sure where to start? My group coaching program is perfect for you!

My groups are designed to propel you forward! More than ordinary business training, the more intimate small group experience allows for advice to be tailored to your unique process.

Being in a small group, you’re able to bounce ideas off others in the same self-employed boat as you. You’ll have immediate access to insight from me and your peers alike, plus a sense of community.

You get the support you need to take tangible steps toward your self-employment goals. When you work with me, it’s like putting on a jetpack. Boost your way into entrepreneurship by knowing exactly what steps to take next, and see your progress each week.

Click here to learn more about my group coaching, and book a call with me before getting started.

Originally published at https://www.maggiekarshner.com on February 14, 2023.

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Maggie Karshner

Maggie is a business coach who helps launch and grow self-employed businesses. Learn how she could help you at https://www.maggiekarshner.com/