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Confessions of an entrepreneur

If someone tells you ‘its fun to startup ‘, ‘its a great experience being an entrepreneur’, please do me a favor and simply slap them across the face and feel free to tell them that I asked you to do it. I know it’s a very strong opening statement but it echoes my deepest feelings and insecurities at that particular instant. No, It is not fun to be an entrepreneur.

And if you are a 20 something and have a budget of 10-15lakhs and wish to open a decent and ‘safe’ business and earn some nice money, God bless you, entrepreneurship or startup is not for you.

Do you know what running a startup means? And what it is like to be a business owner? While all the websites show and write only about the glamorous side of entrepreneurship, here is what it looks like on a daily basis.

Running a startup is equivalent to being a mother; like your business needs all your attention and ‘I’ comes after everyone (customers, employees, product, bills etc) is taken care of. Running a startup means having your courage and spirit intact when things are all over the place.

Running a startup means walking through store windows and beautiful mannequins and resisting that urge to shop and settling for a pair of black pumps from Catwalk while those beautiful suede ones you saw online from Tory Burch have cast a spell on you and are whispering to you “Come, get me!”.

Running a startup means when bills start pouring in, to be able to pay them you start consulting for another startup (of-course with one that has money!) and then you are torn between taking care of your baby and babysitting the neighbor’s baby.  And then, you wallow in self-doubt thinking maybe you are not cut out for this big game and you are better off being that meticulous employee who works his a** off.

Running a startup means wearing several hats at one time and juggling multiple roles.

Running a startup means being strong and confident at all times and never losing focus and above all, faith in oneself. Running a startup means not whining and coming up with excuses but taking responsibility for the product and the people.

Running a startup means bouncing off your last ounce of energy in creating something exciting exhausting it at the end of the day and then doing it all over again day after day. It also means hitting rock bottom and going to bed feeling low, only to wake up the next morning with the rejuvenated spirit and more determination to take on the world.

Running a startup means sacrificing a few materialistic things for the greater good and feeling satisfied while your friends flaunt their fancy stuff and complain about their banal work and reporting to the boss they hate on a Monday morning.

Do you identify with at least one of the above? What does running a startup mean to you?

PS: I am not a pessimist. I just want to make people aware of what it takes to run and sustain a business.

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