Five Things We Learned in Our First Year of Owning A Business

Warriors, we're absolutely stunned.

How on earth has it been an entire year since we began our mission with Weighting For Warriors? The last year has been stressful for everyone, to say the least, and we are so grateful that you've been with us on this journey.

We honestly couldn't do this without you. We've said it before, and we'll say it over and over again because we started W4W for this community. We would not be where we are without your love, support, and dedication to us--even during our growth phase.

You've helped us work towards our dreams, and we hope to inspire you to follow your dreams as well. Although Weighting For Warriors primarily focuses on physical wellbeing, we also care about our community's mental wellbeing. This includes helping you be the best version of yourself and living the life you want to lead.

If you're considering opening your own business or you're looking for new ways to grow in your current career, we want to help you. We're sharing the top five things we've learned over the past year.

1. Make a Business Plan.

A business plan is your best friend. It was easy for us to be excited over our goals and dreams for the business. Still, we're glad we took the time to sort it out on paper before we really hit the ground running.

When you begin talking to people about your business, you're going to want to tell them every single detail. But most of the time, all you need is a quick "elevator pitch" to get your idea across. After that, people can explore your website or social media profile to learn more. If you write out your elevator pitch, it'll give you more focus.

It's okay if your plan changes from time to time. It's okay if you stray from your plan every now and then. What matters is that you refocus your efforts on why you started the business in the first place.

2. Understand That You Will Fail Occasionally.

This doesn't mean you are a failure.

Many things will feel like it's one step forward and two steps back, even with things you don't even expect to happen. Becoming "big" on social media, having people turn you down, selling out of your products—it doesn’t happen overnight.

The thing is, it takes most new businesses at least three years to turn a profit. Celebrate your victories (even the little ones), and don’t dwell too much on the drawbacks.

The best thing you can do is learn from your mistakes and keep moving forward.

3. Don't Be Afraid of Change.

Starting a business is great, but understand that as you grow, things change for the better if they need to. A significant benefit of working for yourself is adapting your business to look the way you want it to.

If we learned anything from 2020, it’s that everything can change at the drop of a hat. Samantha was in the middle of doing a show while Will was at Ranger School when the pandemic hit. Will got deployed with 48 hours’ notice within a few months of starting Weighting For Warriors.

Expect the unexpected and roll with the punches. Be honest with yourself about what you need—and what you don’t need—for your brand.

4. Compete Against Yourself, Not Others.

The more time you spend comparing your business to your competitors, the less time you’re spending focusing on your brand. Take inspiration from those who have become successful but understand that you and your business are unique. There’s enough room for you and your competitors.

It’s also necessary to know the difference between your competitors and others who are simply trying to distract you. Healthy competition is a good thing. It makes you want to work that much harder to be your personal best.

As Ashlyn’s personal hero, Elle Woods, states, we “have to stick together. We can’t look good by making each other look bad.” We are all athletes, for god sakes!

Focus on yourself and your goals.

5. Don't Give Up.

This takes time. And patience.

But most importantly, this takes communication. Learn to talk to your co-workers, partners, clients, and those GIVING YOU ADVICE face to face. Always.

There will be good days, and there will be bad days. Don’t give up. Ever. If there’s something in your way, find a way around it.

We know you can do it.

As always, we’re here to help you in any way we can. Don’t hesitate to reach out.

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