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Authors Posts by Melissa Kirkpatrick

Melissa Kirkpatrick

Melissa Kirkpatrick
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Melissa Kirkpatrick is a Transformational Coach and Motivational Speaker. She’s been featured in Cincy Magazine , CincyChic online magazine and is the author of the impactful self-help book “5 Steps to Your Own D.R.I.V.E.” Melissa offers one-on-one services, motivational speaking and hands-on workshops, allowing individuals and teams to shift their drive from stuck to unstoppable. To learn more, visit http://www.findyourowndrive.com or email missy@findyourowndrive.com.

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What are the three things needed to be a successful entrepreneur in any arena? Read on as our new life coach columnist explains.

Does one really know they are ready to become an entrepreneur? 

Or is it something that lives within and emerges one day when the soul is ready?

I often wonder how individuals make this decision. If you are, or currently considering, an entrepreneur path, let me shine some light on the work that’s required to be successful, as I have learned during my journey.

So, if you know how hard being an entrepreneur can be, all the work and hustle, late nights, and continually striving for the next best move, and yet you still say YES! –Why is that?

I believe that with the abundantly available multilevel marketing and online businesses that have sprung up, and now surpass what one could have ever imagined and expanding to new heights, it opens the opportunity for anyone to go it solo as a business owner, especially online.

When I became an entrepreneur, I was at an age that I had no idea I was going into business for myself, and the word entrepreneur had never been uttered nor could I even spell the word.  And yet, my 10-year-old-self stepped right into growing a business.

I had a magazine that I ordered stationary from so I could pen-pal with my cousin in Alaska.  Since I was without income, my mom had to supply the money for my purchases.  When the items I wanted began to grow in value, I had to figure out a way to find money to buy more.  And there in the catalog was a way to do just that – it stated if so much was ordered get so much for FREE!

I found my customer base which was the farmer’s wives.  I lived in the country, so I jumped on my bike and rode house to house asking for a sale.  And it worked! 

And from that place something emerged within, and I knew my desire to own and operate my own business was my desire and passion.  

Connecting the dots looking back, I saw clearer that the first step in becoming a successful entrepreneur was to have an Action Plan! How to get from island A to island B as one of my coaches always described. 

I used an Action Plan again when I turned 30 and attended college to earn my teaching degree in business and technology education.  I did not know at the time it would serve as a catalyst to my future businesses.

As a mother of two small boys and working full time, I had to develop a solid Action Plan to be on target to complete my degree in four years (my own personal goal). And I did just that!

After graduation I began teaching technology at the high school level.  Being able to teach, mentor, direct and lead a classroom of students making an impact on their future was just the beginning. An opportunity in the form of a brick and mortarbusiness came to us and we became golf course owners.

This step into a bigger entrepreneurial opportunity allowed me to leave teaching and grow the business successfully we were able to buy a second course.  

This is where the second step in becoming a successful entrepreneur comes in to play.  I hired a business coach.

Having never worked with a coach, the opportunity was a new experience.  Her support allowed me to learn business practices, how to grow and expand revenue, work with employees, etc.  My goal was to be a successful business owner.

What I discovered during this work with the coach is that everything is interconnected.  My ah-ha was when I realized that how you do one thing is how you do all things. What was going on with the business was often relating to what was going on in my personal life.  They intertwine and without having someone see past those blinders you can miss a lot and begin a downward spiral and get out of control without even realizing the magnitude. 

This relationship with my coach, opened my mind up to a new possibility which was stepping into learning the game of golf, especially since I am know an owner, and taking those principles of life/business on the golf course where I taught women the game of golf AND how it relates to the game of life!

My entrepreneurship business was in such alignment with my talents and gifts.  What I learned on the golf course is now being translated to others on their own course of life.

Stepping into being a mentor and personal coach was my next opportunity to be available for those wanting to make a difference and live their life by design.

What happened that was unforeseen was my use of alcohol, smoking, spending money, and gaining weight to go numb and unconscious to my decision making and plans for success.

This is where step three become the focus for up-leveling out of my current circumstances and situation.  I realized that using the alcohol was linked to all the other uses so if I eliminated the drinking, I’d be able to manage my business with a powerful and businesslike mindset.

So, I did.  My self-care become my priority.  If I was going to continue as a successful badass business woman, I had to take care of me first.  Like on the airplane to put your air mask on first before helping others.

In all of this I learned four powerful words “You Make It Happen” as learned by Melanie Griffith character Tess McGilfrom the movie “Working Girl”.

Now I am playing on a bigger course in the game of life with being on stage giving motivational speeches, teaching teams and groups how to work together, grow their bottom line, and keep reaching for the next best thing that lights them up, and columnist for Cincy Chic, and many other opportunities just on the horizon.

I leave you with this: What’s needed to really be a successful entrepreneur in any arena?

1. Action plan
2. Support
3. Self-care
 

These three simple things can be super challenging if you aren’t aware of their value for the bigger picture.

Action Plan is what keeps you going from the up and down cycles, much like that feeling after Christmas.  You’ve planned and prepared and in an instance the day comes, and everything is over and done with in a blink of an eye. The next day it sets in to the “now what” feeling.  Much like growing a business if there isn’t a solid action plan these moments will take you under.  

I’ve learned to create the list out for the months ahead.  Much like a flow chart in a sense that when this happens its followed by this, but if it doesn’t happen then this next step takes its place. Through my experience and working with others this is a very time-consuming step that most folks don’t even want to take the time to work on and yet it is the most powerful tool in the tool box.

Support! Even athletes have proven that having a coach is what leads them to their successes.  And they not only have one coach but multiple.  A food and diet coach, a trainer, a mindset coach, etc. So, if their success is foundationally proven with the support of a coach, then why would going through life and running a business would be any different.

Self-care comes in many forms and is usually the one that is mostly overlooked.  When I find myself struggling, I stop to see where has my self-care expired? 

I hope these tips have helped you. Please feel free to reach out with any questions or inquiries. 

Learn more at http://www.findyourowndrive.com/

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