I did my MILP program in 2020 May and like everyone else’s it was a great journey. On the last day I created my MILP project, to achieve my BIG HAIRY AUDACIOUS GOAL. As the name suggests, the goal was everything it said to be; BIG, AUDACIOUS, SCARY! I remember the moment I wrote down that I wanted to start my own organization, I was overwhelmed. I started crying and Manisha had to call me to calm me down.
The next morning when I woke up and there was no MILP to go to, I thought to myself “What the hell did you do?” I was not an entrepreneur; I never considered myself as entrepreneur and here I was talking about starting an organization. My first thought was “Let’s get some things in place before I lose heart “. So I contacted a few people to become my mentors. That’s when the first MILP lesson came handy. Ask without attachment to the answer; make a request giving the person equal opportunity to say yes or no. And thus when the person I was secretly hoping would say yes, said no, there was no regret. I took it with a smile.
A few weeks passed before the first worm of doubt crept in my mind. Many of my well-wishers suggested that I shouldn’t think about starting a company. That I should give it at least a couple of years before I even start thinking about it. That the right thing to do was prepare the base, get a good amount of partners and projects in place and then think of starting an organization. Many asked me why I needed an organization. Couldn’t I do without one? I spent time going back and forth wondering whether I was doing the right thing or not. So then the second MILP lesson came in handy. I grounded myself and connected with my being. It was telling me that I was on the right path. So I heard everyone and decided that I wanted to go ahead with my organization.
Then came the tedious part where I generally lose interest; getting the documents ready, finding the right people to do the work, etc. There were many days when I procrastinated even the simplest of things because I was scared that if this happened, if my company started, then there was no going back. There were days when things looked difficult and I wanted to give up. By then I was also doing my Sorcerer’s journey. This is when the third MILP lesson came in handy. I decided to print my letter to the future and paste it on my wall. In that letter, I had spoken a great deal about my business, about being scared, about not giving up. It inspired me to keep going.
Finally on 2nd June 2021 my OPC, N-abl (Nurturing Abilities Beyond Limits) Management Consulting Firm was registered. I had mixed feelings that day. There was of course a sense of achievement (Yes, I did it), a fair bit of apprehension (Oh God, What did I do), a bit of anxiety (How am I going to do this), and joy (It’s going to be so much fun). I won’t say that since then I haven’t had my doubts and step-backs. I remember the day I opened my bank account. The manager came with this hope that I would open, if not the highest, but the second-best account which had all these perks of dealing with numbers in millions. I looked at her with wide eyes and said,” give me the most basic account that you have”. She gave me a patronizing indulgent smile and said “Ma’am with the kind of work that you are doing, you are sure to make this kind of money in the next six months. How much are you projecting? A minimum 60k in the next six months at least right?” And a part of me realized that I couldn’t even commit to that. I didn’t know if I could manage to earn 60k in 6 months!!! Me, who has earned 80k for one day workshop, wasn’t sure if I could earn 60k in 6 months through my company. That was a big shocker and my anxiety levels rose.
There was also a sense of pride when I had the title of Director written on my visiting cards and LinkedIn profile. I could call myself the Founder, Director of a profit-making (in theory) company. (Now all I have to do is make the profit….hahaha). I was scared of the expenses that I had to incur for the company, the CA, CS etc. The first month all I could see was the money going, nothing coming in. By then I had also enrolled in the coach training program and working towards my ACC accreditation. In one year, I had invested a lot of my in my skill development and owed Manisha and Sunil money.
That’s when I got my first paying coaching client. It was a very meager value, but there was a sense of immense achievement that I had. I had my first paying client who sent money to my organizational account. My bank account showed a deposit transaction!!
My business is very new and I still go through these stages of immense worry and feeling of not being able to do this. Most times it gets very lonely. Many till me that starting a business during COVID was not a great idea. But I remember to keep faith in myself, in my skills, and my ability to do good work. That’s the beauty of the MILP BHAG project. It’s scary, as it’s supposed to be. It’s big as the name suggests. But it leaves you with a sense of immense pride and joy to see something that was merely on paper come alive.