I read recently that the average age of a first-time entrepreneur is 39. I started my company at 25. That is not a flex, it is a fact, a blessing and a curse. I love running a business and know in my heart that I was meant for it. At no point has it ever been easy but I’m grateful for the journey.

My 30th birthday was on January 30th and what I know for sure is that regardless of where I am or where I go from here, I’ve learned……

  1. To invest in myself & my team first.
  2. That there are no shortcuts. I repeat: There. Are. No. Shortcuts.
  3. Relationships are the most important part of business and life.
  4. That a company that does everything will do nothing. Choose a niche. The more authentic the better. 
  5. Not to try to build a business on something you’ll lose interest in because you will and quickly. 
  6. To be comfortable being uncomfortable because comfort is an illusion.
  7. Every mistake that I’ve made was custom made for me.
  8. How to take devastating losses and keep going.
  9. That selling a service is not the same as selling a product. 
  10. That I am not my business. 
  11. To be brave with my asking.
  12. That deciding what kind of founder I wanted to be was just as important as deciding what business to build.
  13. To feed fear with love. 
  14. To focus more on my wins than my losses. 
  15. How to choose faith, as a practice, not a last resort.
  16. It will always feel like I’m behind but I’m often much farther along than I realize.
  17. To seek out advice because I don’t know everything.
  18. It is not my job to know everything.
  19. Much of my distress comes from not accepting what is.
  20. How to apologize.
  21. There’s truly levels to this sh*t and they go UP and DOWN.
  22. To value myself & my life despite where my revenue line sits.
  23. That everything & everyone is a work in progress, including my business. 
  24. To seek inspiration, not isolation.
  25. How to meditate.
  26. When to let go.
  27. My first instinct is always my best.
  28. Regret is inevitable, repetition is not.
  29. Discipline is a daily decision.
  30. Sacrifice is guaranteed.

*feature photo credit: Nappy*