I know several people who’ve recently left their comfortable corporate career, and are now going it alone; having decided that running their own business will be much more rewarding, they’re now going solo. 

They’ve ditched the support of the corporate machine, and are now in business for themselves. 

Fabulous idea in principle, working for yourself has great potential – but it’s not long before self-sabotage and procrastination can kick in, and you’re not attracting the clients and income that you really need. 

When we go it alone in business (or in a social enterprise), it’s hard enough as it is without having the additional burden of our ‘mindset’ getting in the way. 

To thrive in business you have to step out of your comfort zone, and that requires a huge change in mindset…


“When you’re going it alone, to survive and thrive in business you need to work on your mindset…”

When you’re going it alone, to survive and thrive in business you need to work on your mindset. 


If you’re established in your corporate career, performing a function as part of a team, you know what you’re doing, and for the most part you can feel comfortable and confident.  People respect you, you know you’re doing an effective job.  

You can feel proud that you’re making a contribution and doing the best you can.  


Maybe you were a big fish – a senior manager, or lead consultant, in your previous career.

You could command respect from everyone you dealt with, because they saw you as someone who could deliver. 

When you go it alone – all of your support structure evaporates.

Suddenly, there’s just one of you. You need to be the marketing, HR, sales, customer service, delivery all rolled into one. 


It can be really hard to stand up and say “I can do this” – when you’re now a tiny fish in a huge pond. 


When you’re going it alone, you need to work on your mindset, to get out of your own way. 


You’re still the same person – with the same skills, experience, and ability to do the job as you were when you had a team around you. 

Now that you’re going it alone in business, and it’s just ‘little you’ calling all the shots (and having full responsibility for everything) – your confidence can take a nosedive, so you need to be prepared for that, and work on your mindset. 

Your mindset is the only difference between you being able to do the job as yourself, rather than as part of a big team.  

(Yes, ok it was nice to be able to bounce ideas off people, get their input, but when the rubber hit the road, the actual job was done by YOU – remember that?!) 


How do you change your mindset for success in business? 


All that’s standing in your way of using your skills and experience going solo is changing your mindset and taking effective action. 


1) Be aware of your negative self talk… 

What are you saying to yourself when you even think about taking action … ?

“What will they think of me?”,

“I can’t do this on my own”’

etc, etc. 

That ‘nervous’ feeling is there because of things you are saying to yourself; once you know what those things are, you can change them. 


 2) Remind yourself of the skills and experience you used in your corporate career …


You still have all the skills and experience inside you – you just need to bring them to the front when you need them. 

Remember them in detail and write them down.

  • Bring to mind happy clients, happy boss, grateful colleagues. 
  • Hear again the congratulations and thanks you received for doing what you do best. 
  • Re-live that feeling you got from a job well done.
  • Clearly remember the difference that you made when you did what comes naturally to you. 



3) Be clear on the action you would take if you had no fear …. 


What would you want to do if you knew you couldn’t fail? 

Maybe you’d ring up that big client you used to work for when you had a team around you – let them know you’re now freelance and available to work for them. 

Maybe you’d email those people you knew in your corporate life – let them know how you can help them now that you’re going it alone.


4) Do some inner work on your mindset and be aware of your physiology 


Adopt the same body posture as you would have done if you were still working in corporate.  The way you sit, the way you walk, the way you hold your body when you move – they all have an impact on how you feel, and what you believe you are capable of. 

Listen to what your inner critic has to say and then change that message to a more positive one. 


5) Take the action! 


All that’s standing in your way of you using your skills and experience going solo is changing your mindset and taking effective action. 


Make the call.

Send the email. 

Pat yourself on the back when you’ve done it (or punch the air with joy!) 

Small stretches outside your comfort zone will make a permanent difference to how you feel and what you believe is possible for you. 

Once you’ve taken that scary action – your comfort zone will have stretched and it will be so much easier to repeat that action next time!


If you know this is a problem for you and you’d like some help with this, book a call to chat with me privately

Alternatively, sign up to receive my free 7 Steps to Success guide, or  come along to one of my workshops in Gartmore (between Glasgow and Stirling). 

Photo by Zack Minor on Unsplash

Over to you:

I’d love to know how this lands with you.  Do you any tips or experience to share about how you’ve made the transition from corporate to freelance ? 

Please share by leaving a comment in the box below. Remember you might just help someone else!

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