People often say to me – “You’re so lucky doing what you love”.

Actually, it has nothing to do with luck and everything to do with hard work, determination, vision and courage.

So many of us do not take opportunities to create positive change in our lives because of fear.

Fear of what others may think. Fear of failure. Fear of success. Fear of the unknown. Fear of not having ‘enough’. Fear of losing people. Fear of how we might need to change in order to live the life we truly want.

“Change” is a broad term, and it can apply to many things. It’s an amorphous issue that we don’t think about because it manifests itself subtly in so many ways. Whether a relationship ends, you’re moving house, you’ve got a new job, you have a health scare or you’ve lost someone you love; change in any area of our lives – often causes stress.

Coping with change well, only requires an adjustment on your outlook and a little evidence of not only surviving, but thriving in various circumstances in your past.

You don’t have to be radical in your approach regarding change, you can just take it one step at a time.

Having finished my professional dance career 20 years ago – I’ve been working for myself ever since.

Doing work that I love has always been high on my list of values.

Working for myself, exploring my creativity, living life on my own terms and supporting conscious change and empowerment in people’s lives – is deeply fulfilling. The bonus is that I get to travel and meet interesting people in the process.

People ask me how I did it? Well for starters, you need to identify what it is that you love to do and then be honest with yourself around your skill-set.

If you need new skills to create the kind of work that you want to offer – then you will need to either go back to study, get some practical experience or do a lot of research.

Wouldn’t it make sense to foster a career that is fulfilling, of service, inspiring for yourself and others and something that you could see yourself doing for the rest of your life?

It’s definitely not easy to leave solid employment – where you have set work hours, a steady income, paid holidays and some semblance of security.

But neither is coming to the end of your life and realising that you didn’t have the courage and determination it takes to fulfil your dreams.

When people say, “What should I do with my life?” or “What is my life purpose?” what they’re actually asking is: “What can I do with my time that is important, that is of value, that will fulfil me?”

In the past whilst building my business, I’ve also worked in ‘day-jobs’ that included working as a receptionist, teaching dance and yoga in the education system and making sure that I had income flow whilst creating my dream life.

You see – you need to be prepared to do the work, and that involves a little more than just talking about or dreaming about your new life and career.

At the end of the day – all change begins with the decision to ACT.

Here are some suggestions below for those of you wanting to start your own business:

Earn money whilst you build your dream life

If you want to start a small business, don’t quit your day job – yet. Launching a successful start-up business is a process.

Build your business in stages and gradually transition from employee to entrepreneur.

As a new business owner, it will take some time to earn a good income. Keep your nine-to-five job and work on your business during your spare time – this will help those parts of you that are in fear during those challenging, first stages.

Once you have a healthy inflow of cash from your business, you can work on your business and continue creating the life that you love – full time.

Speak up about your business

One challenge many business owners face is that they don’t know how to sell.

It can be intimidating to share your business or ideas with the world, especially when you’re new. If you’re worried what people will think about your business, you seriously need to get over it. If you can’t convince people to support your business, or to buy from you – it’s difficult to make any money. Be ready to speak confidently about your life and your business, even if it makes you uncomfortable.

In my early days as an entrepreneur, I had to do public speaking for the first time. Back then, I didn’t have any training or experience in talking to large groups of people, but I knew that if I wanted to succeed, I needed to get out of my comfort zone and share my message. This came in the form of planning and hosting global retreats, doing public speaking gigs, facilitating workshops and creating mentorship programs.

Know your Why

Rather than starting your business idea with what to sell, think about what it will OFFER the world.

Know the reasons why you want to start your business.

For example, I didn’t create my business just because I had a passion for empowering and inspiring people.

I started my business because I believe that real change in the world begins with each individual healing and transforming the stories that keep them small, so that they can impact the world in positive ways.

Understanding your WHY will help you create a brand, keep your vision alive and market your business.

Know what challenges your target audience face and how you can support them in solving them.

This life is so short – spend it wisely – doing work that you love, with people you love, and create a life of deep meaning and value.