Some people are afraid of flying but I happen to love it. (Which is great since my family lives in Poland and the only way I get to visit them is to hop on the airplane and fly to Europe.)
What are you afraid of?
Maybe you love flying like I do, but you are afraid of failing in your daycare business. Or maybe you are afraid to confront your daycare parents about an ongoing issue. Perhaps licensing visits give you a lot of anxiety.
We are all afraid of something.
Let me share with you the beginning of a scary adventure called "Living My American Dream."
I remember landing in Chicago and going through customs, which took forever, and finally meeting my friend Marcin who was picking me up at the airport. I was very excited, yet somewhat nervous about starting college here in the US.
We arrived on campus late at night. Since I was not assigned to a dorm room yet, I had to stay in a guest room.
I was alone - laying in bed, dealing with jet lag, and out of the blue I started to cry as I wondered, “What have I done? Was moving here a mistake?”
I couldn’t sleep, so I called my mom just to talk. When she answered, I was sobbing and unable to form sentences. I was terrified, to say the least. I was scared of this new country, new culture, new language and my new unknown adventure.
New beginnings are not always easy, are they? Starting an in-home daycare can feel very similar.
Perhaps you have just opened a daycare and now you are asking yourself “What am I doing?” Or maybe you have been running a daycare for a while, yet still those voices in your head are questioning: “Did I make a mistake by opening daycare? Was I foolish by quitting a full time job and starting my own business?"
Fear tells us to quit, to give up before we even start. Fear moves in on us and causes us to doubt ourselves and the abilities we have within us. And fear would win the day if it had it's way - but we are tough women, and we don’t surrender easily, do we?
The obvious way out for me would have been to never unpack my luggage and move back to Poland before school even started.
But I decided not to give up on my college education here in the US. And - you do not have to give up on building a strong and successful daycare business.
So how did I do it? How did I not allow fear to totally overtake me?
Here’s my secret…
After my first sleepless night at college, the morning finally came. I was exhausted both physically and emotionally, but I needed to get up, meet with my advisor and register for classes. While I was getting ready and fighting tears, I heard a "knock" on my door. It was my friend Marcin, who attended the same college I was about to enroll in.
He offered to walk me around campus, show me classrooms, and introduce me to his friends and his beautiful wife, Bethany.
Suddenly things did not seem so scary anymore!
Instead I was very excited because I realized I did not have to do my new life in America alone. Marcin and Bethany were there for me not only on my first day of college, but they have been there for me ever since. I am forever grateful for their investment in my life - I know I couldn’t have done it without them. They modeled to me what a successful mentorship looks like.
And guess what? YOU don’t have to do life or run a daycare business alone either!
It’s so much less intimidating when you have somebody by your side. We all need mentors and friends who will be there for us when we are scared, walk with us when things are challenging, and believe in us when we have no faith.
Just like Marcin and Bethany were there for me, I would like to be there for you.
And even though we might not be able to avoid every daycare struggle that comes our way, when we approach them together we can overcome the paralyzing fear and become bold and confident daycare owners.
You don't have to do it alone, my friend. Let's do it together!
PS - If you want more guidance and practical tips how to run a successful daycare business without feeling alone and misunderstood, the Fabulous Provider Guide might have the message you need to hear. It is packed with personal stories and inspiring advice.
Check it out!