The times that make you wonder why you are putting yourself through this pain often come down to one of two things. Money and people.
With the money, you are worrying about getting sales, whether they are profitable sales, whether you have enough money in the bank to to pay your current bills while you wait for the money to come in from the sales, chasing debtors and then working out whether you have made any money at all at the end of each month.
With people, it can be that you have tough customers who do things like ask you to show them exactly how you do what you do so that they don't have to use you anymore. Or you have some tricky relationships at work where you feel as though you are not entirely on safe ground because your boss is being particularly distant from you.
Dealing with rejection
The hardest thing that people have to deal when they are running their own business and selling for the first time is the fear of rejection. Getting turned down by the customer who you thought would buy your product or service without doubt is a hard thing to deal with in business when you are not used to it. That's why cold calling is loathed by most sales people. Rejection after rejection, day in, day out is not only demoralising, it's boring.
But dealing with rejection from prospective customers is one thing. Dealing with rejection from friends or family is another. When you start your own business, you start it with optimism, enthusiasm and fear. You are giving up that regular salary and the certainty which that brings. The support that your friends and family give you is vital to making you feel as though you are not entirely on your own.
But when you don't get that support, it can be very difficult to deal with. Belief in your products or service is what holds you together and the determination to win against all odds is one of the characteristics of an entrepreneur.
Someone I know well has started their own business and that person is one of the most determined people that I know. In five years, they have taken their business from zero to £500,000 in turnover having started it part time. That person is now being joined by their spouse in the business who has given up their highly pressurised but well paid nine to five job.
But their family does not see their business with the same enthusiasm as they do. In fact, they don't see it as a proper business because it is a network marketing business. And that's not really a 'proper business'. Network marketing is regarded with quite a bit of snobbery in this country. People think you are selling them some sort of 'pyramid-ponzi' scheme where they will have to buy a load of ridiculous water filters or similar which you can't sell.
But this is old thinking.
For sure, some network marketing schemes in the past have given the model a bad name. But this is not the same. Network marketing is becoming a phenomenally successful and influential route to market for many companies who do it well. If network marketing is bad, why do you see so many brands using social networking to get their name out there to help them sell products?
The plain fact is that the world has become wise to the effectiveness of networking, network marketing and social networking. The days of brands marketing at you are declining rapidly. We no longer accept what marketers tell us about their products. We tell them what we think about their products and not just by refusing to buy them.
Networking is a people-centred activity. People buy from people they trust. People buy from people who sell good products. Network marketing is built upon that principle but people seem to think that just because the product was purchased in this way that it is less than legitimate.
You know what? If that's the way you think then all I can say is "Get over it". The best network marketing companies are strong, profitable, growing and they are quietly making the people who work in the businesses a lot of money. In fact, I might just join them.
Network marketing - the new old way of doing business