Self-Awareness for the Emerging Entrepreneur



Sometimes the process to learning to say no in business is the same as in personal matters, and sometimes it is different given that you have employees, systems and revenue to think about (amongst just a few other things, right?). I offer you some questions to ask yourself when deciding yes or no in business:

  • If I say yes to this, what else am I saying yes to? What would I be saying no to? Let me explain this a bit more via an example. Say you will be launching your new business soon, and you are thinking about establishing a home office. If you say yes to establishing a home office, what else would you be saying yes to? You’d be saying yes to a rent-free space. You’d possibly be saying yes to a work day with no commute. Or perhaps you’d be saying yes to seeing your children more.


On the flip side, if you say yes to a home office, what would you be saying no to? You’d possibly be saying no to a team environment where you could feed off of others’ motivation. You’d possibly be saying no having a set schedule that is easy to maintain with less fun distractions. Or, you may be saying no to a monthly office raffle that is silly but also breaks up the daily monotony. None of these answers (or any other answers you would provide) are good or bad, right or wrong. The point is to put yourself in the position to see the big picture of how your decisions affect you.


  • Am I making a long term or permanent decision based on a short-term situation or circumstance? This question is a particularly good one when times get tough. This is a good question to ask yourself to help you keep your eyes on the prize when you have just received your 5th rejection in a row, or your cash flow is lower than you’d hope for it to be, or you’re thinking about postponing your website launch another three months because it’s not yet perfect.


Those are the moments when your fears and old “stories” of who you’re not or what you can’t accomplish try to sneak in. This question can help you counter that. Entrepreneurs bravely step into the risk and fear battle zone daily, and sometimes it’s inevitable that the emotions will want to take the lead. Eyes on the prize.

Stay conscious, stay connected, stay curious and stay true to you and your business. We’d love to hear from you now. What other questions would you add to this list?

The next installment of  “Self-Awareness for the Emerging Entrepreneur”  I will discuss Strategies to Create and Sustain New Habits. Similar to decision-making awareness, successful cultivation of new habits requires self-awareness, conscious belief and habit tweaking and commitment to new choices.

Related articles:

Success Can Be Risky Business

Productivity Means Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff

Achieving Success Means No Excuses

The “C” in COURAGE is for Commitment

Liz Garcia
Liz is a Speaker, Life Coach and Leadership Trainer with Stay Limitless, which she founded in 2011. Liz has been coaching and developing leaders for over 12 years, 10 of those working in the educational non-profit arena. She has guided and overseen the development of over 1,000 leaders. Liz recently served as a Group Facilitator for the Latina Global Executive Leadership Program founded by negotiation expert Dr. Yasmin Davidds and run in partnership with the USC Marshall School of Business. Liz is a former member of the Boards of Directors for the California Latino Caucus Institute’s Madrinas Padrinos Leadership Program and the National Latina Business Women Association – LA Chapter. Liz has a Bachelors in Sociology from San Jose State University and a Masters in Education from Harvard University. You can find more about Liz and sign up for her free newsletter.

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