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Happy Independence Day for Women Entrepreneurs!

Susan L Reid

Independence DayJuly 4th is the day when everyone in the United States gathers for barbecues,  parades, baseball games, and fireworks to celebrate our Declaration of Independence from Great Britain.

So, too, this is a perfect day for entrepreneurial women like you. Whether you are in the process of making or have already made the shift from working for someone else to working for yourself, this is the time to stop and reflect upon the declaration of independence you made when you decided to become a small business owner.

Why did you decide to declare independence?

Was it because you wanted more flexibility and freedom in your life? Perhaps you were tired of working for someone else and wanted the independence that comes from working for yourself. Maybe you wanted to be at home with your children.

Whatever your reasons, this week, when you watch the splendor of the fireworks rain down in the distance, think about how your personal declaration of independence has opened up and changed your life.

What's your story?

My Story

Freak OutIn June of 2004, I finally did it. I handed in my resignation as an associate professor, and began packing up the formidable accumulation of books, music, and files from four degrees and 24 years of academic life. Distilled onto one little piece of paper that began with the words “kindly accept my resignation” and ended with “sincerely,” my academic career ended. And my life as an entrepreneurial woman began.

Taking this step to become an entrepreneur seems, in retrospect, the most natural thing for me to have done. The trek from resigning from a prestigious academic post to starting up my own small business, though, had a lot more start-up woes than start-up goes. At first, I felt euphoric with the feeling of being liberated. Then, I was slammed by the twin emotions of panic and fear.

Since I had always been a full-time, traditionally employed woman, finding myself out of a job with no idea what I would do next was bloody overwhelming. From one day to the next, I couldn’t tell whether I was feeling exhilarated at being free to do, be, and have whatever I wanted, or shocked by disbelief as the reality of what I had done began to sink in.

I felt 98% excited and 2% scared, or was it 2% excited and 98% scared? I just didn’t know! This is what I think makes becoming a woman in charge of her business so intense for us all.

Entrepreneurship: Is It for You?

Becoming an entrepreneur and small business owner is not for every woman. For many people, the very thought of not having a steady paycheck is enough to put them off. For some it’s the cost of starting a small business (paying for health insurance, social security, and other future needs) that becomes too much of an investment and risk. For others it’s the stress of working in isolation, the lack of knowing where to turn for feedback and support, the endless distractions, and being, at least for a time, a one-woman show that sends them running for the door.

For the fortunate few who feel the call of the entrepreneur, however, this is about as exciting a time as it gets to start up and launch your new business!

Top 10 Characteristics of Women Entrepreneurs

OpenFortunately, psychologists, sociologists, and historians have been studying the behavioral characteristics and traits of successful women entrepreneurs for long enough to have come up with a composite list of attributes and characteristics. 

Read the list and mentally keep count of how many times you said, “Yes, that’s me!”

  1. You have a strong desire for autonomy, to be your own boss, and to live life on your own terms.
  2. You are an independent self-starter, not needing or wanting others to tell you what to do.
  3. You have a powerful drive to make money and accumulate wealth.
  4. You are a calculated risk-taker with a higher-than-normal tolerance for failure or even consider failure a non-issue.
  5. You like to be in control and call the shots.
  6. You are highly self-motivated and are indefatigably fearless when it comes to getting the job done.
  7. You had childhood experiences as a budding entrepreneur and/or entrepreneurial parents, grandparents, or relatives.
  8. You have a high level of energy that is sustainable over a long period of time.
  9. You are creative and innovative, a strong decision maker, and able to think quickly on your feet and set things in motion.
  10. You are a big-picture thinker capable of seeing how many things relate to each other.
So, how’d you do? Did you see yourself in this list of characteristics?

Women entrepreneurs are extraordinary people. They value freedom, autonomy, independence, and control. They are creative, driven self-starters. They have courage and conviction in spades and don’t see failure the same way that other people do. They are remarkable in their inner toughness. Their strength helps them rise above self-doubt, apparent failures, and the din of their critics. They value themselves and their ideas so much that they decide, once and for all, to make their own personal declaration of independence.

To you, my fellow woman entrepreneur, Happy Independence Day!

Copyright © 2010 by Susan L. Reid

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Copyright ©2010 by Susan L. Reid, DMA

Dr. Susan L. Reid is a Small Business Expert and Business Catalyst for spiritually conscious women starting up businesses. She is the award-winning author of Discovering Your Inner Samurai: The Entrepreneurial Woman's Journey to Business Success.

If you're interested in finding out more about what steps you can take to ensure your lasting business success, then get instant access to your own free copy of Turn Your Business Dreams Into Reality Toolkit at

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