Most massage therapists at some time in their career make the leap from employee to massage business owner and start their own practice.
Making the leap often brings up many fears of the unknown and fears of failing. The benefits will have to carry you through the transition times: more flexibility in your work hours, no one telling you what to do, working the way you want at all times and more income opportunities. Just look at the way it is talked about – making the leap…leaping is defined as ” jumping or springing a long way, to a great height, or with great force. ”
It doesn’t have to be a leap.
Start where you are at. But you have to remember–it’s not a quick fix for when you dislike your job. It’s committing to a dream and persevering through daily challenges that come with business ownership. Making the transition gradually can take some of the fear out of the many changes that will be happening. You will never know if it is the right time or not but you won’t know until you try.
Save money to make the move
It is important to save enough money so you don’t have to worry about making the move from employee to business owner. Many say to plan for 1-3 years of living expenses and don’t quit your day job. I would say that most rarely have a month of savings and they quit their job as soon as possible.
Start where you are at
One of the easiest ways to start is to rent space from someone else and start slowly…or just jump in with both feet and go for it! Either way, you will either sink or swim. Learn fast or fail. I have rented space for 30 years and never held the lease on a space which means I don’t have the overhead and responsibilities that go with signing a lease and running an office space – supplying water, copier, computer, laundry etc. Keep it simple!
Do the Math
How much will you need to survive and get by and how much will you need to really make this work to thrive and grow?
The thing that is difficult to figure is your expenses and how much you will make because your income and expenses will vary depending on how many clients you have, the rent you pay, the cost of doing business and the cost of not having the clients you need to pay the overhead.
Getting the clients you need
It takes time…or does it? It takes the amount of time it takes but there is so much you can do to make it happen. Remember all those things that you thought were the reasons why you wanted to have your own business?
more flexibility in your work hours, no one telling you what to do, working the way you want at all times and more income opportunities.
That goes right out the window when you are starting out and maybe for a year to three years. You will need to take the time to build your business. Set strict hours and go into the office even if you don’t have a client and work on getting them in each day. Work on your website and getting referrals when you don’t have clients. Work on getting repeat clients from the few clients you get each week. Every client should be rebooking for the next week or next month…preferably next week.
In the beginning you may want to be more flexible with your hours and boundaries to give people more chances to get on the schedule, but don’t be resentful when they do things like not show up to an appointment that they scheduled with you outside of your regular hours. It is just part of building your business.
Begin with the 5 Pillars to success here!