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Overcoming Fear: The 5 Hardest Things About Being a Solopreneur and How to Handle Them

Are you sick of all your hard work benefiting someone else’s business? Are you ready to set out as a solopreneur? You might be a little afraid or unsure how to begin and to be honest, setbacks will likely occur. On the positive side, setbacks are an opportunity for growth. Here are ways to handle five common concerns that will help you on your way to becoming a successful solopreneur!

So what is a solopreneur? A solopreneur shares some similarities with an entrepreneur. Both are business owners but a solopreneur runs a business completely on their own. They are a one-person team, in charge of every aspect of a business. Many solopreneurs become entrepreneurs the moment they hire another person.

1. The Isolation Can Get Rough

Many people love solopreneur careers because they can work from home without worrying about the politics of working with others. However,extended isolation can become upsetting to even the deepest introvert. Spending days at home can become very dull and lead to a staid work environment. As a result, you should work up some options: Work at a coffeehouse occasionally, consider renting an office, or join a co-working space to help you get out of the house periodically.

When working outside your home, you can interact with others to meet your socialization needs. One benefit of co-working spaces is that they offer the chance to make new business connections, which you can utilize to enhance your solopreneur opportunities. And don’t forget to take breaks to see friends regularly.

When all else fails, you can attend a gym to work out and be around other people. You never know, you can meet potential business partners anywhere.  Stay active, keep circulating to reduce isolation before it becomes a problem.

2. Health Insurance Is Your Problem

As a solopreneur, one of the biggest challenges is finding high-quality health insurance. Say you’re making a livable wage (or more)in this profession but suffer from a sudden health issue that threatens your well-being or temporarily affects your ability to work. Without insurance, you will end up suffering from potential financial loss.

In many cases, that kind of financial loss could set you and your business back while you recover. Thankfully, many types of insurance options are available for solopreneurs.

For example, group health insurance is possible for a solopreneur, though this may not always be the best option. A group health insurance plan is a discounted health insurance plan available only to people in a certain group or company. Many large companies offer these plans to their employees as a benefit. Freelancers or solopreneur have options like these as well that are offered through professional or industry organizations. Some plans are offered   A private health insurance option could be the best choice, though these may be too expensive for some. A tax-free health savings account is often popular because you can add as much money as you want and draw on it when you need it.

3. Taxes Can Get Tricky

Being a solopreneur is an exciting adventure for many people but can quickly become a nightmare if you don’tadequately prepare your taxes. Making errors while calculating your business taxes can complicate your return — and even a few hundred dollars can become an issue if they’re contained in a mistake you make repeatedly.

In light of the potential consequences, you should consider hiring a professional accountant or tax preparer. These experts skillfully gauge how much money you owe and find a way to minimize your payments. (And yes, you’re going to pay almost every time as a solopreneur, unless you end up taking losses.)

Before you visit a tax professional, though, you may want an idea of where you stand first. Consider estimating your potential tax payments with aself-employment tax calculator. If you find that your tax prep expert’s final number is wildly different, you can consider other options for next year.

4. Branding May Be Complex

As a solopreneur, you need to make sure that people understand what services you offer. Unfortunately, any vagueness about your branding can sabotage your success. However, branding can be expensive when you are starting out. Thankfully, a large number of inexpensive branding options are available, including:

  • Simple copywriting – Focus your website to explain what services you offer. Use social media channels and even your blog, if you have one, to help increase your target audience
  • Specific business focus – What kind of service or product do you provide to your consumers? Let them know by highlighting a specific focus that quickly showcases what you have to offer on your website.
  • Compelling logo – A solid brand needs an alluring logo that stands out from competitors and captures the eyes of potential partners and customers.
  • Attractive headshot – A professional headshot can be used for multiple purposes, including on advertising, business cards, your website, professional online accounts, and various other areas.

When incorporating any of these elements into your business portfolio, you also need to make sure that you protect your intellectual property. Contacting a competent copyright lawyer will ensure that your brand or logo aren’t pirated or co-opted by another business offering a fraction of your service quality.

5. Work and Home Life May Merge

If you’re a parent who works from home, it’s likely your home life is already pretty complicated. Creating a balance between work and family can pose a significant challenge. Many individuals struggle at this, and end up neglecting their loved ones. However, you can’t afford to let your solo business fail, or to neglect your children.

So what can you do to achieve the right balance? A good partner can help, if you have that luxury. They can take the children when you need to work, caring for and entertaining them until you’re done. Regardless of your division of labor, though, you should consider taking “family breaks” as you work to ensure that you don’t get too overwhelmed or wrapped up in your work. Try this method: Work 50 minutes straight and take 10-minute breaks to avoid fatigue and tunnel vision.

Starting and maintaining your own business can run the gamut from inspiring and fulfilling, to exhausting and disheartening. Knowing the potential pitfalls in advance can help you prepare to move through the confusing, complicated, or lonely parts and get to the part where you make your entrepreneurial dreams come true.

About the author

Laura Gayle

Laura Gayle is a full-time blogger who has ghostwritten more than 350 articles for major software companies, tech startups, and online retailers. Founder of www.BusinessWomanGuide.org, she created her site to be a trusted resource for women trying to start or grow businesses on their own terms. She has written about everything from crowdfunding and inventory management to product launches, cybersecurity trends, web analytics, and innovations in digital marketing.

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